Oct 152013

Let’s review the ground rules here. The Mystery Date song is not necessarily something I believe to be good. So feel free to rip it or praise it. Rather the song is something of interest due to the artist, influences, time period… Your job is to decipher as much as you can about the artist without research. Who do you think it is? Or, Who do you think it sounds like? When do you think it was recorded? Etc…

If you know who it is, don’t spoil it for the rest. Anyone who knows it can play the “mockcarr option.” (And I’ve got a hunch at least one of you know this one.) This option is for those of you who just can’t hold your tongue and must let everyone know just how in-the-know you are by calling it. So if you know who it is and want everyone else to know that you know, email Mr. Moderator at mrmoderator [at] rocktownhall [dot] com. If correct we will post how brilliant you are in the Comments section.

The real test of strength though is to guess as close as possible without knowing. Ready, steady, go!

Mystery Date 101513


  15 Responses to “Mystery Date”

  1. cliff sovinsanity

    Sounds like competent 90’s power pop from the likes of the Posies or Cotton Mather. Although it sounds like the lead singer is possibly from another era or genre. The lead guitarist probably produced the track because his instrument is very present in the mix.
    I don’t know what to make of the “bridge” with the reggae beats. This might be a clue.

  2. trigmogigmo

    To me it has a lot of that west coast power pop sound of the 80’s but somehow sounds a bit later. But more “jangle pop” than “paisley underground”. I was hearing a little Plimsouls, a little Smithereens, a little Cheap Trick, and a little Knack. And yet, lurking around it is a big Beatlesque British feeling. But the singer doesn’t have a hint of an accent that I can hear.

  3. H. Munster

    I also thought “Beatles influence” when I heard it. They sound a bit like Crowded House to me, though that band would never write anything with such puerile lyrics. And the reference to “family values” means that it can be only an American group.

  4. I’m hearing a scrappy regional band like the Clarks from Pittsburgh or EIEIO from Illinois. Guys who have been at it for a while despite no real commercial success.

  5. ladymisskirroyale

    Correct decade.

    Very insightful. But wrong.

  6. ladymisskirroyale

    Scrappy regional band: correct. But not the correct region.

    No real commercial success: correct! (Despite a very well known producer.)

  7. mockcarr

    My guess would have been a mid-90s british band given the Weetabix reference. That production seems really dead-center power-poppy.

  8. H. Munster

    I missed that reference. Good point.

  9. ladymisskirroyale

    Correct! Good sleuthing!

  10. ladymisskirroyale

    The band includes a member of one of the seminal British bands of the late 80’s/early 90’s. This band was the next musical project of that artist.

    Any more hints needed?

  11. BigSteve

    There’s certainly a lot more guitar twiddly bits than you usually hear in this kind of power pop. If it weren’t for the Weetabix reference I would have guessed it was that guy from the Decemberists. The singer has that same kind of theatrical style.

  12. I know who this is, where it’s from, etc, but I’m pleased to see the angles people are taking on the song. I got the same range of impressions the first time I heard it.

  13. ladymisskirroyale

    Yes, the guitarist is the central and founding member of this group.

  14. Is it John Squire’s band? I forget their name.

  15. ladymisskirroyale

    Ding ding ding! MrHuman guessed correctly!

    The band is The Seahorses, formed by John Squire from the rapidly-cooling ashes of The Stone Roses.

    Their one album is produced by Tony Visconti – there appears to have been high hopes for the band! The album is interesting: a combination of Oasis-style English rock, blues and some power-pop thrown in. Squire’s guitar style sounded to me (a non-guitar player) quite different from what he was creating with the SRs.

    Squire is also a very good visual artist.

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