Wednesday, April 11, 2007

Dial "L" for Low.

First a note to say that, as of tomorrow, my domain and web issues will have been resolved, thanks to donations from readers like you. Thanks! In addition to my being able to afford to host my own stuff, my longtime Internet pal Mikey has also offered me some of his space/bandwidth, which may afford me the luxury of posting more frequently. Today's songs are on his server as a test to make sure he can handle the mighty power of the Copy, Right? downloaders. Mwahahahahaha!

  • Komeda "Mushroom" (Can cover)
    I was late on the Can bandwagon. Admittedly, this was partially because a slew of pretentious, music-snob types I knew would stand around at parties clamoring on and on about them and how music today sucks and I didn't want to have anything in common with those assholes. But good music is good music and sometimes music snobs are right, albeit narrow-minded and incapable of embracing the future. I first started obsessing about Ege Bamyasi and Tago Mago in 1996 around the same time I was obsessing about Komeda's The Genius of Komeda. Little did I know at the time that a mere two years later these two great tastes would taste great together in B-Side form. Or did I create that reality? Time will tell.

  • Ergo Phizmiz and His Orchestra "Hollaback Girl" (Gwen Stefani cover)
    God, what I would have given to exchange this sort of surreal Klezmeresque sound for that of Gwen and Eve's "Rich Girl." Gwen tries to play it off as if she's eclectic, but come on.

  • Tokyo Ska Paradise Orchestra "Sesame Street" (TV theme song)
    It's always a funky jam, isn't it?

  • Alyssa Milano "Da Doo Ron Ron" (The Crystals cover/Comp. Phil Spector)
    It kills me a little to know that the man responsible for the hits of my favorite girl group ever, The Crystals, is such a violent, murderous nut now, but not nearly as much as it kills me to hear Alyssa Milano "singing" this song. Makes the Shaun Cassidy version seem brilliant. I hate sax solos.

  • The Mini Pops "Video Killed the Radio Star" (The Buggles cover)
    Well before Kidz Bop, the Mini Pops destroyed then-modern pop hits. Unlike the Kidz Bop overlords, whoever was in charge of the Mini Pops actually let the kids sing the main vocals as well as the background vocals. And, I'm guessing from a few of the really bad notes, perhaps allowed them near the synthesizers as well. (Brady, I bet you're regretting sending me those free iTunes downloads now that you see this is the type of crap I got!)

  • Gun "Word Up" (Cameo cover)
    This sounds to me what it might sound like if INXS were to have played a hard rock bar band in a really bad '80s movie with which I probably would have become mildly obsessed.

  • The Associates "Love Hangover" (Diana Ross cover)
    For every Bronski Beat, Spandau Ballet or Soft Cell that had a hit or two in the States with some '80s New Romantic anthem, there is a band like the Associates who were as good or better but never caught on here. This is one of my favorite covers of the genre and the era.

  • The Drones "Downbound Train" (Chuck Berry cover)
    Blues rock has never really been my thing, even when coming from bands who dabble in noise rock as well, but I have a friend who is absolutely obsessed with the Drones. This is for him.

  • Captain Smartypants "Xanadu" (Olivia Newton-John/ELO cover)
    There have been many times in my life I've wished to be a gay man, most of which involved having sex with my gay male friends. But I would also have made an awesome drag queen. And have excelled in a gay men's chorus. Especially singing this.

  • Frank Rogala "Fuck and Run" (Liz Phair cover)
    Speaking of the gays, here's another thing I would do: Cover songs women wrote about men without needing to change the gender of the subject. In fact, if I were a gay man, I might become a one-man Liz Phair tribute artist, covering every song she's ever done. Well, from the good albums anyhow.

    Dane said...

    But the Shaun Cassidy version was brilliant! :)

    Thanks for the latest downloads. I took Xanadu and Love Hangover. Oh, and some time back, I took Giant Sand's "The Beat Goes On" and love it so much I gave it away on my blog (with a thank you to you, of course.)

    Anonymous said...

    That is like totally what I do!
    I mean, as a gay man, I'll go to karaoke bars and sing women's songs about loving men. So much fun~ And no one bats an eye since it's karaoke.

    prince pence said...

    Love your site. Great to see some Tokyo Ska Paradise Orchestra up here.
    Their bassist has a side project called Tsuyoshi Kawakami & His Moodmakers and they do some covers worth checking out, like their groovy version Caldwell's "What You Won't Do For Love."

    Jess said...

    that liz phair cover is great! as always, thanks.

    p.s. - i started a blog and linked to you on my blog roll, if you'd like to reciprocate that'd be awesome!

    Kenny said...

    Party Fears Two by the Associates was recently voted the best Scottish single of all time - see

    I've always loved the Love Hangover cover as well.

    Sadly, Billy Mackenzie killed himself 10 years ago. With top singles #2 and 4 also done by a suicidee (Stuart Adamson), it makes for depressing reading!

    Gun were also from Scotland and flirted with the big time, but were never that great. I do remember this from back in the day though...

    Anonymous said...

    I love it! I musical directed a couple of shows by the guy that arranged Xanadu, I'm assuming he did, I know he does alotta stuff for Captin Smartypants. I don't know if you remember me playing the church lady, but he wrote that show. Eric Lane Barnes.

    fairest said...

    wow. not sure it gets worse than the hollarback girl cover.