Trust the Gene Genie

Wednesday, December 06, 2006

Wax on, wax off

Yeah, it's been a while. Thanks for the reminder, Thom. So we'll take care of a little housekeeping first. If you look to the right, you'll notice I've updated my links. Surface Tension now has its official welcome mat.

Second, it's time to add to the Perfect Pop Songs Vol. 2 list. Refresh your memory here and here. This one's got a chip on its shoulder. Some of you out there -- I won't name names -- turn your nose up at indie bands because you claim it's just too inaccessible, too hard to listen to. So, in this pretty-much all indie installment of the Perfect Pop Song I give you three tunes that are such stellar examples of pop songs it's likely they'll all be stuck in your heads for months.

Fujiya & Miyagi's Collarbone: F&M is a band from across the pond that has yet to get its debut album "Transparent Things" released stateside. I can't remember where the "Fujiya" comes from, but, yes, "Miyagi" is a shout-out to Mr. Miyagi. They've got a serious groove, and mix style, beat and crazy guitar hooks with very slick production. "Collarbone" is probably the perfect sum of all the band's influences and talent. It's got a killer beat and an insanely addictive bassline. Not to mention they work in the ol' nursery song, "Footbone's connected to the anklebone/the anklebone's connected to the shinbone" and on up the skeleton. Does this song have a proper title? Anyway, it's fun little number sure to get your head nodding.

Grand National's Talk Amongst Yourselves: The song is a track from the band's 2004 "Kicking the National Habit" and features an unrelenting, driving beat matched up with this low-key, understated vocals. The band, like so many that would come after in 2005 and 2006 to midling success, takes '80s pop new wave and updates it in a way that's pretty hip and little surprising, evinced in the song's 20-second electronic pulse opening. Once the guitars come in and the vocal start, it's hard to shake the song. "I made it all myself/'cause I can't anything down/Anything down/However hard I do try." It's a cool track.

Jarvis' Black Magic: Jarvis, who is Jarvis Cocker, is another Brit who's recently come out with an album that has yet to find a distributor stateside, but has killer pop and rock instincts. He's been around since the late '70s when he fronted a pop-punk band called Pulp as a 15-year-old. Anyway, he's soloing it now and producing some very cool music. "Black Magic" is pop song for sure, but it's dark and velvety and very rewarding as it gets better after each listening. And like all good pop songs, is about anything to which you apply it. Is the titular black magic a perfume, a lady-friend, a favorite liquor or maybe actual black magic? Who knows and who cares, the song just grooves. "You only get to see the light just one time in your life/Black Magic/That blows you mind away/And takes it somewhere that you want to stay." Jarvis' voice is deep and full, giving a lot of his songs this twisted Elvis/Johnny Rotten feel. Trust me, it works.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

indie music is inaccessable only to people who have closed their own minds - or have let corporate Big Brother convince them what good music is. Rock on, TheRobRogers, rock on.

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