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Wow! Chief Inspector Blancheflower? Amazing that you picked that out. It's one of my faves but it seems too buried within the Blueberry Boat album and a little too weird for me to think it stands out with anybody else.
Off the top of my head...
1. Blueberry Boat
2. Here Comes the Summer
3. Chief Inspector Blancheflower
4. Benton Harbor Blues
And Jackson mentioned wanting to get into Fiery Furnaces... you have to listen to Blueberry Boat... it won't be as sweet or as direct as Here Comes the Summer but it's one of the most satisfying epic and eccentric listening experiences you'll ever have. It's like listening to every cool band's experimental and extensive closing track (i.e. The Who's "A Quick One, While He's Away", Zappa's "Brown Shoes Don't Make It", etc.) over and over again. That the album seems to keep a steady pace is amazing.
Now ends my semi-annual rant about Blueberry Boat! Back to your regularly scheduled programming.
The Shirelles - Baby It's You /
I don't really like the sound and the chorus of 'Here Comes the Summer'. 'Baby it's You on the other hand is alright. Although I do not like the 'shalalala'-parts.
Lal Waterson & Oliver Knight - Flight of the Pelican /
'Trouble' is a bit too eighties and soft-rock-y to my taste. It's definitely not bad and reminds me of 'Rumours' quite a bit. 'Flight of the Pelican' is
great and probably my favorite song of this week. Just beautiful.
Luke Kelly - Scorn Not His Simplicity /
It's not just the title that I don't like a lot about 'Happiness Is a Worn Pun'. The only part of the song that I think is good is the title repeating part. Although 'Scorn Not His Simplicity' is maybe a bit too folky and overdone (the flute...), the song is nice enough and the lyrics are fine.
Faces - Ooh La La /
'Ooh La La' doesn't seem very special, but it sounds quite good. Maybe even better every time I hear it. And then 'Liquid'... Well, that's probably my least favorite song of this week. The monk choir wasn't a really good idea. I could accept the rest of the song, if the singer had a better voice.
The Fiery Furnaces - "Here Comes the Summer"
The Shirelles have a lot of really great songs, but "Baby It's You" isn't one of them, in my opinion. I think the haunting mood was done better by the Shangri-Las in "Remember (Walking in the Sand)".
The Fiery Furnaces is not a band I'm familiar with. I agree with some others that the intro was fascinating, though I felt like the song didn't quite deliver on its promise. The piano chords and "Remember" refrain got a little repetitive. Still, I give the nod to the new(er) kids on the block. At least I had some desire to listen to this song again.
Lal Waterson & Oliver Knight- "Flight of the Pelican"
While the Yo Yo Ma original was better (j/k), I like the sparse simplicity of "Flight of the Pelican". It reminds me of one of my favorite Bangles songs. No, you are not hallucinating. "Following" is a virtually unknown track by the fab fourettes, but if you like "Flight of the Pelican", you might want to check it out.
I never realized "Trouble" was Lindsay Buckingham. "Trouble" fades into the background of early 80s soft-rock to me, and doesn't really do anything to stand out. My favorite song by the Fleetwood Mac guitarist is "Go Insane" - I'd definitely vote for that one!
Luke Kelly - "Scorn not his Simplicity"
This is the most bizarre matchup of the day.
I guess "Happiness is a Worn Pun" is a song I could put on when I need to dance away the anger, but the song seemed unremarkable to me. I like the guitars, but that's about all. I know SFA gets much love here, but I haven't bought a ticket on that bandwagon.
I really liked "Scorn not his Simplicity", certainly my favorite of the songs I'd not heard before. I'm not sold on Luke Kelly's vocals in this one...I'd be interested to find other performances of this song. While the vocals are adequate, the music is very good.
Plus, I'm a sucker for the Irish. What can I say? :)
Jars of Clay - "Liquid"
As soon as I cranked up "Ooh La La", I remembered that Rod Stewart released a version of the song in the 90s. I like the jingle-jangle of it, and the piano, though Ronnie Wood's vocals are a little too Randy Newman-esque for me. I like Stewart's vocals better.
But hey, "Ooh La La" is up against my pick, "Liquid", so that's that.
Kudos to Moonbeam for setting this up! I'm enjoying listening to other people's picks, even when they don't strike a chord with me personally. And I agree with Bill that it's fun not having any idea who will win!
Analysis: I have never heard (or even heard of) the Fiery Furnaces before, but I quite enjoyed this song! As much as I love "Baby It's You," and think that it stands as one of the greatest compositions, the Shirelles' recording itself has been bested by covers to follow in the years, namely by the Beatles, and most notably, Smith.
Winner: The Fiery Furnaces, "Here Comes the Summer"
Analysis: This was actually the closest race for me. I enjoyed both songs, but neither jumped out at me. "Trouble" has the initial hook, but after multiple listens, it seemed to lose its magic, whereas the more unique "Flight of the Pelican" tends to grow.
Winner: Lal Waterson & Oliver Knight, "Flight of the Pelican"
Analysis: I am not familiar with Super Furry Animals, but this song certainly did not sell them for me. Even though I usually appreciate songs recording artists wrote themselves, Luke Kelly's "Scorn Not..." is a beautiful cover of a beautiful song, that I am being introduced for the first time. This is hands-down my favourite song from this round that I wasn't already familiar with. Could end up on my next all-time favourites list.
Winner: Luke Kelly, "Scorn Not His Simplicity" by 2 miles
Analysis: I do love both songs, however, I actually like Rod Stewart's 1998 re-recording over the Faces' version with Ronnie Wood on lead vocals. This is my favourite Jars of Clay song, and I am glad you nominated it, Larry!
Winner: Jars of Clay, "Liquid"
I will also second Sixpence None the Richer.
I was very skeptical of getting into their music, mostly because of the aforementioned "Kiss Me" was a bit too sugary for me. CCM Magazine listed their eponymous 1997 album as one of the greatest Christian albums of all time (#19 on their list), and so I gave it a listen. Great stuff.
I have also found that Christian music with melodies and production that I actually enjoy is hard to come by.
Some of my favourites include:
Newsboys (from their '94 Going Public album to Thrive '02 and everything in between)
dc Talk (Jesus Freak is my favourite CCM album)
TobyMac (hip-hop soloist from dc Talk)
Jars of Clay (especially their eponymous debut album)
Audio Adrenaline (who seem to have that rocky edge a lot of Christian rock groups lack)
Chris Rice (singer/songwriter)
Michael W. Smith (not exactly the same style of music as the others listed, but enjoyable nonetheless).
Jars of Clay's "Liquid" will probably grow on you after multiple listens.
I’ll echo my friend Honorio’s first reaction : Damn, I got no time for that, but how can I resist such a good idea ?
I’ll only comment the songs I nominate.
The Fiery Furnaces- "Here Comes the Summer" (2005)
Very tough match : indie pop vs. Girls groups. I’ll go for the first one, for its freshness.
Lindsey Buckingham- "Trouble" (1981)
Again, a great contrast. Moonbeam, you’re great !! This is one of the greatest games this site has ever hosted !
Lindsey wins by a thin margin with this great FW song. I love the Spanish guitar chorus. Thanks to my man Greg.
Luke Kelly- "Scorn Not His Simplicity"
I’m a huge Dubliners fan. Beans, thank you for this great clip ! I see that a lot of people posted music from their own country or state and that’s great. And a lot of folk songs !! This song is just magnifique, sorry to use a French word. Great lyrics. You just can feel that the song is autobiographic : Songwriter Phil Coulter's first son was born with Down's syndrome (trisomy 21). Very moving. Now that i have kids, I really love those "parents" songs. You'll see what I'm talking about. The fiddle solo is just great, only Celtic folk musicians can make it sound like this.
Faces- "Ooh La La"
Nice acoustic jam. Rod Stewart was one of my teenage idols. Little did I know.
I'm happy that this game is doing so well! It really is exciting. In fact, I've purchased 3 of these songs through Itunes- we'll see if that extends to purchasing albums!
Voting for Week 1 is now over.
And here are the results of week 1!
The Fiery Furnaces - "Here Comes the Summer": 17
The Shirelles - "Baby It's You": 11
This one went back and forth for awhile, and The Shirelles held an early lead, but The Fiery Furnaces managed to build a lead toward the end that The Shirelles couldn't quite close.
Lindsey Buckingham - "Trouble": 8
Lal Waterson & Oliver Knight - "Flight of the Pelican": 20
Lindsey Buckingham staked an early lead, but was quickly overwhelmed by "Flight of the Pelican", which flew on to a big win.
Luke Kelly - "Scorn Not His Simplicity": 17
Super Furry Animals - "Happiness Is a Worn Pun": 10
This one was also quite close, although Luke Kelly always maintained a lead. The gap closed to 10-9 at one point, but Luke Kelly dominated the remainder of the votes to clinch the win.
Faces - "Ooh La La": 22
Jars of Clay - "Liquid": 5
A blowout from the start, Faces scored the easiest victory of the week.
The winners advance to the Winners Bracket 1 (W1), while the losers can take heart in the fact that they are not out of the game yet, and move to Losers Bracket 1 (L1).
Up-to-date brackets are available here.