Song of the day: The Offbeat – "Where Is The Girl"

October 31, 2010

Some time ago I had a hideously long post about UK band The Offbeat and their recent album, In Love Field (2010). I mentioned at the very end of the post that the band had sent me three copies of the album and that I was more than happy to give two of them away. I kept one copy (I like this album a lot), and I’m pleased to say that someone emailed me last week which resulted in one CD jetting its way to wherever it went. (I have a poor memory, and it’s more than a day ago, so I’ve forgotten exactly where it went.)

However, I still have one copy left that I’m keen to hand over to someone. Due to a lack of responses to the original post, I’ve come to one of three conclusions:

1) Almost no-one got all the way to end of the post where it said “I’ll give you a CD!”
2) People who read the original post hated what they heard, hate The Offbeat, and want nothing to do with the CD.
4) Hardly anyone reads this blog.

(I’m going with option 1. It was a very long post.)

Now, to help you decide whether you want to email me for a complimentary CD, here’s a track from the album that I didn’t play you in the original post:

The Offbeat – “Where Is The Girl” (2010)

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And to help make up your mind even more, here’s another track from the album:

The Offbeat – “A Love To Last” (2010)

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So, would you like a CD?

The Offbeat official website
Buy In Love Field at CD Baby ($8)
Buy In Love Field at Kool Kat Music ($8)
Buy In Love Field at CD Universe ($11.45) (Huh?)

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Song of the day: Sia – "The Real Thing"

October 30, 2010

I received an email from a chap named Terry (Hi, Terry!) who alerted me to a new version of the greatest psychedelic song ever recorded an old Australian song:

Sia – “The Real Thing (2009)


Trippy.

Thanks for letting me know about the song, Terry.

Sia’s version of “The Real Thing” appears on Compassionism, a compilation album made last year for the stop-pestering-animals organisation PETA. It’s one of those albums where the proceeds from the sale of the album go to the organisation. Surprisingly, though, it’s 100% of the proceeds that go to the organisation. How’s that for generous?

By the way, I think there may have been a bit of false advertising in the blurb written by whomever wrote it. The blurb starts off like this:

Compassionism features fifteen heart-pumping tracks from some of the most creative and diverse artists to come out of The United States, Australia and Canada.”

I must admit that whilst listening to Sia’s version of “The Real Thing” my heart wasn’t pumping any more than it usually does. If anything, it may have slowed down a little.

Anyway, that has nothing to do with anything.

Here’s the original:

Russell Morris – “The Real Thing (1969)

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This is now officially the first time that a song has been made Song of the day twice on this blog. So if you want to read more about the song, head on over to the previous “The Real Thing” post. I must warn you that it consists mostly of me gushing about how stupendous “The Real Thing” is.

Sia Furler official website
Sia Furler on Facebook
Sia Furler on MySpace


Frank’s Faves on Fridays

October 29, 2010

The Keys – “I Don’t Wanna Cry” (1981)

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Although I’m usually mildly allergic to skinny-tie songs, I liked this. And the more I played it the more I liked it. (I’ve played it five times now – in a row.) And I like the lyrics, too. There are only two things I wasn’t keen on:

1) The melody in the verse has an octave jump (e.g., at 0:08: “…our last GOOD night…”) that I find a little disconcerting. I sounds a little like a yelp instead of being part of a natural and flowing melody. It’s a very minor thing, and doesn’t stop me from enjoying the song, but it’s just slightly jarring;

2) One of the song’s recurring riffs has a passing note that made me screw up my face the first couple of times I heard it. (One example is at 1:21.) I’m used to it now, but I thought it just a tad sour in amongst the rest of the song.

But I like this song a little more every time I play it. (I think I’ve already said that.)

The Tonettes – “Oh What A Baby” (1958)

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A thoroughly enjoyable 50’s song. These are the kind of songs I love grabbing a guitar and playing along to. I laughed out loud when I first heard that guitar chord at 0:05. It sounded more like a child squealing (or a bird squawking) than a guitar. Now that I’m listening to the rest of the song, I’m thinking that this may be a novelty song, considering the fabulously nonsensical background singing (what are they singing?). But besides – or maybe because of – the thoroughly cryptic lyrics (apart from the occasional “baby”, I don’t understand anything they’re singing), the song is a great bit of 50’s fun. And I love that guitar solo (at 1:10) – it sounds like the guitarist is doing his or her best to imitate a train whistle. Great stuff.

The Soul Survivors – “Expressway To Your Heart” (1967)

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What an odd song. It starts off as a Motown/Funk hybrid (love the beat and that bass), but then the funky music comes to an abrupt stop to make way for a sort of soul ballad (at 0:29) as the singer pours his heart out. I sort of enjoyed “Expressway To Your Heart” but it sounded ‘bitty’ to me: bits of different songs and styles were grafted on to each other, but the whole thing didn’t sound cohesive. Consequently, I liked some bits of it, but not other bits. Another odd thing for me is that I thought the song was way too short. I was surprised when it faded out. I thought the song was going to keep going, but it faded out at the strangest moment (at what I thought was going to be the middle section, where the singers were expanding on their woes). I wouldn’t have minded it going on for much longer. I’ve heard the song a few times now (three), and each time I’m surprised and mildly disappointed when the song fades out. Ah, well.

The Chips – “Rubber Biscuit (1956)

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Now, this must be a novelty song from the 50’s. The words here are even more nonsensical than the ones in The Tonettes’ song. The main lyrics are actually gibberish. This song is silly. And I liked it. I didn’t love it, though, because of the verses staying on the one chord which was way too monotonous for me. And I winced at the bad harmony singing at the end of the song (1:58-2:02). Still, it’s a fun song.

Bonus instrumental:

The Doobie Brothers – “Slack Key Soquel Rag” (1975)

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Very nice guitar playing. I could go on and on about the various aspects of the guitar work, but it would waste my time and yours. However, I do want to point out the excellent guitar harmonics at the end of the track. They’re marvellous – as is the guitar playing everywhere else in the rest of the track. By the way, and this won’t be of interest to anyone, but I’ve always like The Doobie Brothers (I’ve had Best Of The Doobies for years and love it), and I have to admit that my all-time favourite driving song is “Listen To The Music”. If ever I’m cruising down a highway with the wind in my hair, “Listen To The Music” is the perfect song to listen to.


Song of the day: Zoot – "One Times Two Times Three Four"

October 29, 2010

Here’s the Zoot, a band who early on their career sounded like they wanted to be Australia’s answer to The Who (maybe not all the band members, but the drummer certainly), with a nice little sing-along:

Zoot – “One Times Two Times Three Times Four” (1969)

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And here’s this week’s most useless information for you:

Zoot was a band that not only spawned Rick Springfield and Beeb Birtles (Little River Band), but also came from Adelaide, the capital of my home state of South Australia and near to the city in which I grew up. Yay!


Song of the day: Flash – "Small Beginnings"

October 28, 2010

I was all set to play you a super-duper power pop song from Australia today, but I’ve been listening to Super Hits Of The 70’s: Have A Nice Day (yes, all 26 discs) and was amazed by one song in particular. I just had to share it with you. The song is “Small Beginnings” by Flash, a British prog rock band.

If you’re familiar with today’s track, then please pardon my ignorance. I’d never heard the song before, or even heard of the band. The first time I heard it I was stunned by how much it sounded like… well, I’ll let you figure it out:

Flash – “Small Beginnings” (1972)

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I must admit that I’ve never ever heard a song that sounded like a cross between The Who and Yes before.


Song of the day: Sins Tailor – "Let’s Lie"

October 27, 2010

I received a fabulous* email from a musician called David (Hi, David!) the other week. David told me that he used to be in a band called Sins Tailor and then asked if I wouldn’t mind playing some old tracks he’d dug up from an album the band made many, many years ago. (It was 1998.) The album is called Ticket For A Destination.

Now, before I play you a track or two, I’m here to tell you – and anyone else reading this – that if somebody wants to hear some music, whether it’s by them or their favourite artist, all anybody has to do to is ask. I’ll play anybody’s music. Anybody’s.

(I may have mentioned this before, but I’m of the opinion that if someone goes to the trouble of emailing me to let me know about their music, the very least I can do is let you know about it, too.)

Right. Now on to the music.

Of the 10 tracks I heard, these three are the ones I found the most interesting:

Sins Tailor – “Let’s Lie” (1998)

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This next one (well, the start of it anyway) reminded me a bit of Led  Zeppelin’s “The Song Remains The Same”:

Sins Tailor – “And Your Little Dog Too” (1998)

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And (all of) this one reminded me of The Beatles’ “Slow Down”:

Sins Tailor – “Way Too Fast” (1998)

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If you like what you heard and want to buy the CD, I’ve been reliably informed (i.e., David told me) that there are still a few copies floating around (i.e., David has them). Just email David and he’d be quite happy to sell you one. Easy.

One last thing: when I saw the name of the band I thought that it was a sort-of Spoonerism. I thought that somebody had first come up with the name “Tin Sailor” then decided to: a) swap the first two letters of each word; and b) make the first word plural. In other words, I think someone decided to go from the fairly comprehensible “Tin Sailor” to the completely incomprehensible “Sins Tailor”. (Well, the transformation made sense to me.)

Sins Tailor official website
Sins Tailor on MySpace

(*If I receive an email from a musician I’ve never met before, I automatically consider it fabulous.)


Song of the day: The Rutles – "With A Girl Like You"

October 26, 2010

Why? Because it’s brilliant:

The Rutles – “With A Girl Like You” (1978)

“With A Girl Like You” appears on The Rutles’ incomparable* album, The Rutles (1978).

(*Well, I suppose you can compare it to an album by The Beatles.)