Today’s super-deluxe double-date comes courtesy of two different Townspeople. Can we manage the riches, pay proper attention to both contestants? I think so. Must we then choose between these two potential beauties? Of course! Rock Town Hall does not support swinging. Enjoy!
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 #1[audio:https://www.rocktownhall.com/blogs/wp-content/uploads/2012/01/01-Mystery-Date-012712a.mp3|titles=Mystery Date #1]
Mystery Date #2[audio:https://www.rocktownhall.com/blogs/wp-content/uploads/2012/01/Mystery-Date-012712b.mp3|titles=Mystery Date #2]
MD#1 I’m getting a late 60s London vibe here. Someone who has the same influences as David Bowie.
MD#2 is a frigging mess. At one point it sounds like Bjork singing. It’s not his style but I could see Les Claypool involved in something this. I can’t put a time or place with this.
I don’t particularly like MD#1 but I actively despise MD#2 so I vote for #1.
CDM, you’ve pretty well summed up my thoughts exactly, I think the first one might possibly be some Britpop early nineties thing by someone who has listened to the Bee Gees, Syd Barrett, Robyn Hitchcock and a bunch of early Oasis b sides.
The second one is horrible, it sounds American but reminds me of the sort of thing Chumbawamba used to do in a really irritating “look at us aren’t we clever and amusing” way, apparently believing that being trendy and left-wing and all living in a house together excuses them from having to put some consideration into the construction of a song occasionally.
#2 smells like Jon Spencer. However, the vocals and other “contributors” don’t sound like his usual suspects (Butter 8, Boss Hog, etc.) so I’m guessing he’s not involved.
So my next guess would be something Sean Lennon – he’s been going for all sorts of wackiness and although I like a lot of the things that he’s been involved with, I’ve also heard some complete cacaphony.
#1 does have a Britpop eccentric thing. I think it is more current than the 60’s. Like a one man bedroom Beatles thing. Karl Wallinger?
#2 is kind or dreadful. I used to go see a local band here in Philly called The Daves that used to do this kind of schtick. What has their lead singer Bekka Eaton done lately?
Whoa, she’s got a Wiki page?!?!
Parts of track #1 sound like Love’s Forever Changes is the model. The problem is that no one involved has the chops to pull off a track like this. The playing is sloppy and there’s no compensating energy. Or anything really. I believe I’ve heard this before, but I can’t place it.
Track #2 was made by people who do have chops, but it comes off as simply clever. There’s a faint Zappaesque vibe, but the whole thing feels kind of plastic.
I can’t bring myself to vote for one or the other.
What’s that siren I hear?
#1. BigSteve is spot on with the Forever Changes model, but the vocalist sounds a little like Sean O’Hagan from the High Llamas.
#2. I kind of like it. I’m 98% positive the group is black or mixed. Part Zappa, part Sly, part Bitches Brew, part Stevie Wonder.
Ok ok I voted for #2, because I like when people know what they’re doing, even if I don’t like it. #1 is more the kind of music I like (and think the style of music is the reason it’s leading in the poll), but ambition is no substitute for skill.
A lurker friend of mine guesses that #2 is Mr. Bungle.
You know, the High Llamas crossed my mind too, cliff, but my memory of them is that they’re slick to a fault, so I’ll be surprised if it’s them.
I know it’s not but #! sounds like Roger Daltry’s solo Leo Sayer stuff…#2 FZ/Belewy or Antibalas without all that yukky political frosting….
#1 reminds me a little of “Cups & Cakes”.
#2 is less clever than it thinks it is….I think.
Rock on, BigSteve. Thanks. I voted #2 for the same reason, although I would more likely listen to #1.
Yes, I’m pretty sure #2 is mixed on a few levels.
Good guess, but innnnncorrect.
Great description of both tracks. Good to have you back, Telewhacker!
Is #2 related to Zappa in some way?
I don’t know if he’s involved in this recording, but I’m pretty sure a member of Zappa’s band has also played with one the members of one of this band member’s regular band, if that makes any sense.
Big reveal coming Sunday, most likely.
I couldn’t get all the way through either of them. I agree, the first one sounds like something that could have come from someone involved with Forever Changes, but they can’t pull it off. Then again, Love barely pulled off Forever Changes, so I think it’s really hard to do that and make it work.
The suck of the second song is unbelievably high. I can’t believe how much I hate that.