Sunday, March 15, 2015

Vol. 6 Episode 9

So, a while back I talked about the Restorations single from the Call + Response IV art project. I dug into the question that I had and found out that it was my own fault. I recorded the record at 45 RPM and it was supposed to be played back at 33. I did this because there was no indication that it should have been played back at either speed and I just chose the one that sounded right to me. I downloaded a copy from the bands Bandcamp page to verify the sound of the track. I like the song at 45 better than the way that it was originally recorded so I will keep my original copy and will keep the download just for reference.

There is a new radio station in my city called Go 96.3. I have been listening to the station on and off. I have found two new bands that I am interested in. One I will be talking about in this post (Saint Motel) the other is called Big Data. The latter will have a full length CD out later this month. The radio has been playing the singles from each of these artists and I have been enjoying them quite a bit.

One of my favorite indie bands, Golden Grrrls, broke up a while back. Two of the members have come together to form a new group called Sacred Paws. They have a new EP coming out. You can listen to the whole thing over at Clash Music and read about what is going on with this new project.

Here we go...

MC Hammer – Please Hammer Don’t Hurt ‘Em

This is MC Hammer’s third album. It is the one that put him on the charts. This album was released in 1990 and was one of my father’s favorite albums at the time. This was odd to me since I grew up hearing my dad listening to the “oldies” station in the garage. So to hear my dad pick up on something new and not rock was kind of weird to me. I do give credit because of the use of some great samples probably hooked him in. Hammer got a lot of flack for being a pop-rap artist. There were others that backed him up for doing what he does as well, Ice-T for example. The big singles from this album were utilized all over pop culture from TV to movies. You couldn’t get away from these songs.

There were five single put out from this album. The first single from the album is U Can’t Touch This. It was a major hit on the charts. Rick James has credit partially for the song because a sample from Super Freak is prominently used in the track. The lyrics for the song that became pop culture were, “Stop: Hammer time” and “You can’t touch this.” The latter is still used sometimes in today.

The second single from the album is actually a cover called Have You Seen Her. Originally recorded by The Chi-Lites. The lyrics had been updated for the 90s with references to The Cosby Show for example. The song becomes a sappy R&B track with Hammer looking for “Her”. Not my favorite track from the album but has good meaning.

The third single from the album is called Pray. This is another good song from the album. This song samples When Doves Cry from Prince as well as the song We Care A lot from Faith No More. The sample helped propel the song up the charts just like the Rick James sample in the first single. Obviously the song is about talking with the higher power before doing the things in your lives. It is a good song and he lays out his words in a way that make sense to me. I respect the song.

The next single from the album is called Here Comes TheHammer. This song samples from the song Super Bad from James Brown. It is a fun rap song with not much substance. It is mainly Hammer talking about himself and lightly taking down his competitors. The chorus and bridge parts of the song are simple lyrically but overall the song is fun.

The last single from the album is called Yo!! Sweetness. This song was not included on the vinyl release of the album. This means that I don’t actually have a copy of the song. This song uses samples from Give It To Me Baby from Rick James again and from Your Sweetness Is My Weakness from Barry White. Hammers’ song is good but basically pulls the Barry White chorus as it is.

This is a fun album even with the slow sappy tracks on it. It may be a bit nostalgic for me but it is an album from 1990. The year just before I was a freshman in high school. I think that nostalgia is OK from this album for me.

Saint Motel – My Type EP

This EP was put out last year, 2014, on both 7” and CD. The 7” is only two songs where as the CD has four different songs. They have a full length album that was out in 2012 as well. The original version of this EP has six tracks. The version that I got has only four. The two extra tracks that are on the six track version are from their full length so you don’t need to feel like you’re missing something. If you like this EP you can get the full length and have everything. I bring this up because one of those two tracks is call Benny Goodman and is a really great track too. I got both the latest version of the CD and the 7” record. The record comes with a download card. That is always nice. There are probably a lot of younger people out there that listen to music more on the go that have the time to sit down and listen to a record.

I got the EP for the title track, My Type. I have a big thing for disco and this song is totally in the vein. From the cow bell to the saxophone intro. It is so disco. It reminds me of Franz Ferdinand a little too. The opening sax intro becomes a full horn section in the choruses as well adding to that disco feel. The song also makes use of a Rhodes or Wurlitzer keyboard in the verse sections.

The second track is called Ace In The Hole. It is kind of a slow jam that talks about talking to a specific girl. The song uses gambling references to get the person in the song to talk to the girl before she leaves. It is kind of convoluted but is still somewhat entertaining. I could see this almost being a James Bond song that opens one of the movies.

The third song on the EP is called Cold Cold Man. It is a peppier track that talks about love again. It is more about the couple that are in a more permanent relationship. They sing about looking forward to and knowing that they will be sleeping in the same bed. This isn’t about sex though, it is about love and having someone to count on day after day. It is a sweet song that caters to people who in monogamous relationships.

The last track is called Midnight Movies. It is a moderate rocker that has this cool lead instrument that could be a guitar or a Rhodes like keyboard but distorted. It is a very interesting sound. I am not exactly sure what the song is about other than watching movies at midnight. I am not even sure if it is at the theatre or at home but they do talk about stories being told at the midnight movies. This doesn’t make any sense to me as the stories would be told at daytime movies as well.

I like this EP and am thinking about getting more from them.

April March & Aquaserge – April March & Aquaserge

This is the latest album from April March. This time she teams up with Aquaserge. April March wrote all the songs except for two, Des Tics Et Des Tocs by Benjamin Gilbert and How Was Your Day? by Julien Gasc. Aquaserge wrote all the music for the album except for Spirals which was written by Frederic Jean. That being said the album has a smooth feel overall that reminds me of if Stereolab wrote all the music for April March. This is a compliment to Aquaserge because I really like Stereolab. Stereolab are not together any longer so this is a nice nod to the group. I get to hear Something I never even thought about before. I really like this album but there were no singles released from the album that I know of. I do know you can still get the album either as a download or as a physical CD from the Bandcamp page. It is a genius album that deserves more attention here in the US.

That's all for now...

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