It's Just The Way I Smile

I've posted about this before, and I'll say it again. This is my favorite Marie Antoinette moment. Pure majesty. (I watched the movie again, last night).

The Cure > Plainsong


Wrap Your Arms Around Me, Baby

I recently started (slowly) collecting Hip-OSelect's Complete Motown Singles box sets, so there will probably be these random Motown posts of hidden gems I'm running into. This one in particular is Frances Nero's Keep On Loving Me.

I've never heard of her at all, but according to the wiki article, Frances won a contest out of 5000 contestants and won a dozen long-stem roses, $500, and a one-year recording contract with Motown. This is her one Motown single, and it's absolutely wonderful.

Frances Nero > Keep On Loving Me


Light or Dark?

Nina Persson's hair, that is. I can't decide which I prefer.

The Cardigans > My Favourite Game

The Cardigans > For What It's Worth


What You Don't Know, Find Out

I can't believe it's been twenty years, but there ya go. I was listening today to the Katydids' self-titled debut album. Produced by the original Jesus of Cool, Nick Lowe (1989, man...I still can't get over it), it's chock full of jangly pop goodness. It won't blow you away with originality or powerful, emotional lyrics, but it's a very pleasant and catchy album. It's light, breezy and sounds good turned up on a sunny, spring day.

One of my favorite songs on the album, Lights Out (Read My Lips), finds vocalist Susie Hug being playful and coy, egging her partner on. She tells him he "can have a chapter in the middle of the night", and encourages him to "read more, read on". It's kinda cute and has a high sing-a-long factor. They released said song as a single, as well, and included an acoustic version as one of the b-sides. The b-side is pretty straight ahead, and is practically the same as the original, sans drums. They released one album, Shangri-La (produced by Ian Broudie of the Lightning Seeds), after this one and broke up after they were dropped by their label. You can probably find this album in the used bins for a fiver or less, it'd be worth a pickup.

Katydids > Lights Out (Read My Lips)


I've Got A Joke I've Been Dying To Tell You

One of my favorite Elliott Smith songs is Pitseleh, which means "little one" in Yiddish. It's so filled with anguish, despair and even self-loathing. He knew he had this great thing, this relationship, except it was doomed because he's so flawed. So he tried, but it just didn't work out. And as he realizes it'll never work, he ends with the line, "I never meant to hurt you", and shuffles away underneath grey skies. Being a seasoned veteran of a million fucked up relationships, my heart just breaks when he sings "The first time I saw you/I knew it would never last/I'm not half what I wish I was." I guess it's not necessarily a good thing to be able to relate to his songs, but there is beauty in this sorrow.

Elliott Smith > Pitseleh


How do you begin again?

Last week, the new PUFFY single finally arrived in my mailbox. I have to say, I'm not entirely taken with it. It's fine, but it doesn't jump out at me and make me want to listen to it over and over like some of their other tracks and records. That said, one of the b-sides, My Story (variation by agraph), caught my interest. I like the music on this track, but the vocals kinda clash with it. Maybe if they could have redone the vocals with something more low-key, sinister and sexy. I do like this idea, even if it's only a remix at this point.

I've been thinking lately that there are some artists who could use a change of pace, PUFFY being one of them. Don't get me wrong, I love the power pop stuff. I think, for example, that the association with Butch Walker isn't a great one. Last summer's Avril Lavigne-penned/Butch Walker-produced All Because of You single was a travesty. It's just time to move on from that sound. Either that or somehow talk Andy Sturmer into coming back.

I think, though, if they could reinvent themselves in a sort of an electronica mode, not necessarily subdued but not dance-y, maybe something whispery, it would be interesting even if it were not a success. You've already got the cash, you've already got fans; why not try?

PUFFY > My Store (variation by agraph)


One Room Disco

Speaking of new singles, Perfume have a new one coming at the end of the month, called One Room Disco. There are a couple covers for it, the red/white/blue cover is the limited edition (includes a DVD) and the dollhouse one is from the standard version. I'm not exactly sure how I feel about this one, it might be a grower. The last one, Dream Fighter, bolted out of the gate and knocked my socks off the first time I heard it. This one lacks the immediacy of DF so far, but I'll be giving it more of a chance when the actual disc shows up in my mailbox. If you're actually interested in making a purchase, I usually head over to yesasia.com as they've got a ton of cool stuff to add to your collection.

*EDIT* sorry, I just kept the one pic of the limited edition, they were breaking so hopefully this work. If you'd like to see them both, head over to Perfume City.

Perfume > One Room Disco


Long kiss goodbye

I just discovered Halcali's Long Kiss Goodbye the other night, it looks as if it came out a few months ago so I'm obviously late with this. Is it a rock song? Is it a hip hop song? I don't know, but I like it enough. The chorus is insanely catchy and the video itself is pretty cool. I love those reflector hoodies they're wearing. I totally want one, although I'd look pretty retarded trying to rock that.