30 October 2009

"And it's sink or swim, like it's always been..."

Not much is going on this week, as you can probably tell. Hull City are all over the papers but I'm not going to bang on about it here. I'm three quarters through the terrific autobiography of Chris Evans. And that's about all. So, as if it were the Red Adair of this small segment of the blogging world, we indulge vehemently again in a round of .... iPod roulette!

1: Hanging On The Telephone - Blondie
"Did she go to work or just go to the store?" Frantic, simple and fabulous stuff from Debs et al. It has the fewest airs and graces of any Blondie record and I love the controlled desperation within the lyrics as the intended recipient of the call stays away from the phone. There is a Def Leppard version on the ether, and the song title was borrowed for a fanzine for Huddersfield Town after one of their ex-managers told the local press he was "hanging on the telephone" when trying to secure the services of a new player.

2: Victims - Culture Club
"Show my heart some devotion..." The one song of Boy George's career which should mark him as a great composer first, prior to great singer, great showman and great figurehead. Phil Pickett's piano playing is wonderful.

3: Jessie - Joshua Kadison
"She asked me how the cat is, I say 'Moses? He's just fine'..." Oooh. Now I don't believe in guilty pleasures at all - you like what you like and folk who sneer can bugger off - but there is something nagging at me that says this simply isn't a song for a man. It is a tug-of-love bit of schmooze that women love but having played it on endless radio shows (it tests well) over the years I've listened to it properly and grown very fond of it. It is a terrific bit of storytelling, even if the story itself makes you shiver uncomfortably, and I will always enjoy it. I'll get some real stick for this...

4: Acceptable In The 80s - Calvin Harris
"It was acceptable at the time..." This is looped as backing music on thousands of television programmes these days and as a consequence has suffered from over-exposure (it dies on dancefloors, despite being eminently danceable) but I still like it. The title of it appeals, naturally, but it's just a smart, funky tune and that's perfectly fine.

5: Tap Turns On The Water - CCS
"Come and ride a river, come and find the sun..." Collective Consciousness Society, or something. The line about looking at your sister "in the raw" remains most dodgy to this day but I love the brass inserts and the multi-layered chorus as it fades out. It sounds like a record where everyone was having a really good time and, surprisingly, it fared quite well on the dancefloor when I did 70s nights, although I only played it after last orders when everyone was ratted.

So there we have it? Joshua Kadison, hmmm...


Jon Peake said...

I'm surprised the Calvin Harris track dies on the dancefloor. I thought it would be packing them in. I like it too, but I cam to it rather late. I'd heard it, but didn't realise what it was.

That CCS song line about the sister always makes me think twice too. It's very dodgy indeed.

Carry On Up The Missus said...

You can tell a song has a bad rep when iPods use the "shuffle" function to make comment on it. Joshua Kadison? Acceptable in the... well, mid 90s, but you get the idea.

I, and my iPod, share your pain! But by now, you should know better, your dreams are never free.

Kolley Kibber said...

I liked that CCS song, but the 'sister' line always made my flesh crawl, and I was only about eight when it came out. Nice to know I wasn't the only one.

Charles Nove said...

Another vote for Joshua Kadison. A marvellous song. I also have a recurring problem with Charlene's "I've Never Been To Me". No, wait. It's the overall noise it makes. Yes, the lyrics are spectacularly awful but, if you can partially disengage, it's a beautifully made emotional soup.