Thursday, August 30, 2007

My Bloody Valentine - Lose My Breath

The Cocteau Twins purchased the land. The Jesus and Mary Chain laid the foundation. Galaxie 500 put up the walls. However My Bloody Valentine threw a roof on it and called it a house. The house of Shoegazeee! Since I'm now realizing I have yet to actually explain where the term "Shoegaze" came from, it was coined by the press to describe bands with motionless live shows, ones who would play their instruments and gaze at their shoes. Thankfully these days the word is just associated with the music and most don't seem to care about the origin or the term. The guy who coined it sounds like a prick anyways. Yeah, stick it to the NME and celebrate the term. It does sound pretty psychedelic at face value.

So in 1988 My Bloody Valentine put out their first record, Isn't Anything. They had a few EPs before that, but for the most part they aren't worthwhile. I think this album a lot of the time gets overshadowed by Loveless. Yeah, Loveless is definitely a masterpiece and the better album, but Isn't Anything has its greatness too. I actually like this one song, "Lose Your Breath" more than anything from Loveless. I've already done an entry on this song, albeit focusing more on the Deerhoof cover, but I don't have much new to add here.

My Bloody Valentine - Lose My Breath

"Keep coming now
Possessed of nothing more than hell
Before I can speak
My world is wishing me asleep

Weigh me down
And when the darkness comes around
Repeating heads
Remember nothing I have said
Where are you
Come back again I want you to
'Not now girl' you say
But I was born to lose my breath"

What the hell... here's the Deerhoof version too. It's one of my favorite covers ever.

Deerhoof - Lose My Breath

My Bloody Valentine - "Lose My Breath" Live in 1989

My Bloody Valentine - Isn't Anything @

Wednesday, August 29, 2007

Galaxie 500 - Tugboat

How much can I say about Galaxie 500? How about that it's such a sad realization that nothing Dean Wareham is involved in ever truly gets the respect it deserves. He's an absolutely brilliant songwriter and guitarist, and the best songs from this year's Dean & Britta album shows that the guy still has it. But prime Galaxie 500... good lord. This was one of those bands that when I heard for the first time I was absolutely floored and began to question my life and how I could have lived without this band in it. Within a week I had all three of their incredible albums, pursued rarity collections, bbc sessions, the works. The jewel of my collection however is a "Blue Thunder" 7" signed by the entire band. I napped that on eBay for the unheard of price of $12. What a day that was.

So "Tugboat," possibly the band's greatest song....what can I even say about it?! For one it's in my top 10 songs ever and its lyrics have remained in my aim profile for a period of months. How does it make me feel? I sometimes hate describing music and what it brings out in me, as its both far too complex to fully explain and somewhat pointless when you could just play the damn thing. Many artists with vague lyrics claim their songs can be about whatever the listener makes of them. However, a lot of the time I feel like that's bullshit and the artists don't even know what they're writing about. I know Dylan has said that about some of his own work. But then in contrast to the abstract nothing songs there's ill-defined lyrics that are about everything. "Tugboat" is one of those songs. The background on the song is that it was inspired by Velvet Underground bassist Sterling Morrison who in his later post-VU life became, well, a tugboat captain. In a way you could view the song as Sterling's 'fuck you I want to captain a boat.' I think that'd be doing the song injustice. I feel that this song pleads the listen to explore the world, and drive your own tugboat. I see it as taking charge of your life to find the one thing you love the most. Sterling is the embodiment of this. He was in one of the most influential bands of all time and was busy studying for a Ph. D. To abandon those and drive a boat? A boat? On water? Insanity? No...that's bravery. As of now I don't know what I want to do with my life. I'm attending college majoring in psychology, as that's the course I'm most interested in. Yes, I'm interested, but am I devoted towards it? Wouldn't we all like to think so. I think all too often we get too caught up in what we've been told is the right thing to do, what the correct path to follow is. With this we get too caught up in succeeding at this that we forget about ourselves along the way. I really admire those who when they finally have the moment of realization, the finding of their true passion, they take action upon it. It's easy to brush off....we hate abandoning things we've put significant time and effort towards. But if we're only doing something to please others, then why do it at all? Granted I feel we should meet halfway between the two extremes here: irresponsible gluttonous prick who indulges his every need
and the passive assembly line mechanical man who never thinks what actually is in his best interest.

Well...this certainly took a different tone than most entries here. I love the Galaxie 500, I really do. "Tugboat" comes from their debut album, Today. I can never decide if I prefer that or their second release, On Fire. Both are pretty amazing.

Galaxie 500 - Tugboat

"I don't wanna stay at your party
I don't wanna talk with your friends
I don't wanna vote for your president
I just wanna be your tugboat captain

It's a place I'd like to be
It's a place I'd like to be
It's a place I'd like to be
It's a place I'd be happy
It's a place I'd like to be
It's a place I'd like to be
It's a place I'd like to be
It's a place I'd be happy"

"Tugboat" Promo Video

"Tugboat" live in a High School gym

Galaxie 500 - Today

Tuesday, August 28, 2007

The Jesus and Mary Chain - Never Understand

Invented Shoegaze while digging Post-Punk a grave....One of the most important bands of the last 25 years.... Psychocandy....Melody + feedback... The Velvet Underground & Beach Boys.... Gig riots.... Kevin Shields was an obsessive fan.... Cool hair... Way awesome... Pixies cover....Lost in Translation....Coachella....The Jesus and Mary Chain.

The Jesus and Mary Chain - Never Understand

"The sun comes up another day begins
And I don't even worry about the state I'm in
Head so heavy and I'm looking thin
But when the sun goes down I wanna start again

You never understand me
You never understand me

Don't turn around until you look at me
Why don't you take a second and tell me what you see
Things I see you only disagree
You never understand that's what I want to be

You never understand me
You never understand me

Not wishing to hide but you just can't see me
I tell you the truth but you don't believe me
Thinking of love but I can't hear what you're saying
Tomorrow I'm leaving
Cause I'm not stayin'
(Uh huh huh)"

I love this band so much.

"Never Understand" promo video. Omgsobadass.

The Jesus & Mary Chain - Psychocandy (though it is way overpriced there)

Monday, August 27, 2007

Cocteau Twins - Lorelei

Welcome to Shoegaze week. Though "week" in this context would normally describe 7 days, on this blog one of my week-long series usually ends up lasting two weeks or more. My "Summer Songs Week" for one continued for over a month. I already have 14 songs lined up for entries, and that list may continue to grow.

I'll be doing these entries in chronological order by year. This takes us back to 1984, when the Cocteau Twins released what many regard as their greatest effort, Treasure. The Cocteau Twins began as another band influenced by Siouxsie & the Banshees and the artsier side of post-punk. However by their second album they developed their own sound, a sound that was unlike anything else at the time, requiring the creation of a new genre to be categorized. Thus dream pop was born. You can get a good idea of the sound from the name alone. Songs are driven by atmospheric textures and extensive instrumental layering often sounding like a collage of sweeping sounds. The mood the song conveys is more of a focus than anything else. The Cocteau Twin's guitarist Robin Guthrie stated that he felt that the way the guitar was recorded was more important than the notes being played. Dreamy, yes.

Their vocalist, Elizabeth Frazer also sounded unlike anything else at the time. Her high-register voice combined with her Scottish accent still sounds unorthodox today. Additionally, making out the lyrics is practically impossible to do by ear, another precursor to shoegaze which more often than not has undecipherable vocals.

Here's "Lorelei" my favorite song off of Treasure, along with someone's best guess at the lyrics.

Cocteau Twins - Lorelei

"Get off the car
Kick his chain, Kick his pride
Get him soaked hit run
Lift up your toes
In my mouth
And we can make love
And we can go
We're covered by the sacred fire
When you come to me, you come to broke

Without a doubt

We're covered by the sacred fire
When you come to me, you come to me broke
Guilty girl, Guilty boy
Get to make out
Him chocked with mousse
Lift up your toes
In my mouth
And we can make love
And we can go"

"Lorelei" Live

Cocteau Twins - Treasure

Saturday, August 25, 2007

The Magnetic Fields - Lovers from the Moon

Ah, another Magnetic Fields entry. This should be Friday's entry, but instead it's a rare Saturday one. Yesterday was much too exhausting. All the trekking around campus for the various activities makes my feet and calves feel like I put in a 12 hour + day at Disney World. Tomorrow all I need to do is register for classes, so I intend to do next to nothing.

With this entry I will now have covered all three Magnetic Fields song that appeared on Pete & Pete. However Lovers from the Moon is the only one of the three to feature Susan Anyway instead of Stephin Merritt on lead vocals. The first two Magnetic Fields releases, 1991's Distant Plastic Trees and 1992's The Wayward Bus are oddities in the catalog, as Stephin doesn't sing even one note on either of them. Stephin started to sing when Susan needed to leave the band to live in Arizona. Claudia Gonson would later fill the female vocal gap.

"Lovers from the Moon" was used in the episode Valentine's Day Massacre. Like so many Magnetic Fields song, I find this track so comforting. It's like a huge luxurious blanket that I can just immerse myself in while drifting through the cosmos. I can't find much information on what Susan is up to these days, but I've found that she's had a few exhibitions of her metalwork sculptures in Arizona. What a voice.

The Magnetic Fields - Lovers from the Moon

"They say everyone you touch turns to gold
They say we're too young I think we're too old
Ugly as sin, pale, and thing
They've been wrong before

They say you're a frog prince swollen with pride
Always a bridesmaid, never a bride
Getting confused in Santa Cruz
Living in a dream

Touching across the room like lovers from the moon
Dancing all night to the tune of lovers from the moon

I'm not afraid to walk hand in hand
I think we were made to lie in the sand
Decadently by the sea, under the sun

Touching across the room like lovers from the moon
Dancing all night to the tune of lovers from the moon"

The Adventures of Pete & Pete 2x05: Time Tunnel

Because of this episode, I make sure to time travel every daylight savings time in the Fall. Wait until it's midnight, turn the clock back and hour, and relive your life. You're in bizarro time: do something you'd always wanted to do but were too hesitant to try before. Make sure to have plenty of riboflavin!

This also marks the episode where Pete and Ellen finally go on a date. No fog, no fun? We'll see.

Part 2

Part 3

The Magnetic Fields - The Wayward Bus/Distant Plastic Trees

The Adventures of Pete & Pete Season 2 DVD

Thursday, August 23, 2007

Magnetic Fields - The Flowers She Sent and the Flowers She Said She Sent

Well look who's back. Despite an exhausting day of orientation and various assemblies, I'm really happy with my new school. It suits me so much better than my previous university, and I have high hopes for the next two years.

But that's enough about me...onwards with the Pete & Pete!
As I said with the possibly of this entry, I would bring gifts of the Merritt kind. Well here it comes, "The Flowers She Said and the Flowers She Said She Sent," one of my favorite songs from the Magnetic Fields most consistent and concise record, Holiday. I know the song was in several episodes, but I can only say for certain was that it was prominent in "What We Did On Our Summer Vacation." I participated in my annual summer's end ritual last night, and it was, like always, rewarding. If there's one episode that can neatly summarize my love for the show, that's the one.

The Magnetic Fields - The Flowers She Sent and the Flowers She Said She Sent

"I saw you standing at the airport
With your chihuahua in your hand
Crying on the moving sidewalk
On your way to Disneyland

And the flowers she sent and the flowers she said she sent
Are all equally dead
You don't care anymore, she said
And the books she read and the books that she said she read
Are all spread on the floor
You don't care about them anymore

I saw you closing your antique shop
With a boa 'round your throat
And you tremble like an ostrich
In your ostrich feather coat

And the flowers she sent and the flowers she said she sent
Are all equally dead
You don't care anymore, she said
And the books she read and the books that she said she read
Are all spread on the floor
You don't care about them anymore"

For the Magnetic Fields' album, I cannot recommend it enough. Though I'll always love 69 Love Songs best, as that's what introduced me to the band (and that there's so many brilliant songs on it,) but for a quick fix of the band, I always turn to Holiday. One thing about the record that's missing from their later albums is the production. All pre-69 releases were produced by Stephin Merritt, and his lack of engineering expertise is incredibly charming. Actually, I cannot say for myself, since as far as I know Stephin could know worlds about producing music, but just chooses to take the lo-fi route. The thing with the early Magnetic Fields albums, all typically in lo-fi synth pop style, is that they sound unlike anything else I've heard. Electronic music has been done to death in this day and age, and sometimes it's hard not to just yawn at the thought of another "indie act" with a synthesizer. Also with all the presets and compression, it's difficult to hear so called electric music that doesn't sound plastic coated, cold, and utterly dead. The Magnetic Fields on the other hand are very much alive and well, sounding as honest as the sing-song recordings a little kid makes with a pocket tape recorder. However there's a significant difference between the two: musical expertise and innate songwriting chops. Of course I'm talking about Merrit here, unless the name of the little kid is Brian Wilson. Then again, he's actually a big fan of the Magnetic Fields... for real.

The Adventures of Pete & Pete 2x02 Fields of Pete

The episode that introduced the world to the Orange Lazarus. Only on this show could take something as prototypical and predictable as the big-game baseball episode and make it entirely their own. To be honest, this is one of my least favorite episodes, but that's probably just due to the sports connection. Not really my thing. Still, it's fantastic, which is a real testament to the quality of this series.

The Magnetic Fields @ Merge Records

Adventures of Pete & Pete Season 1 DVD
Adventures of Pete & Pete Season 2 DVD

Wednesday, August 22, 2007

Tara Key - Long Trail, Racecar - Wonderment

For me today marks the last day of Summer. I'm heading back to college tomorrow morning, and depending on how rigid the orientation schedule is, this might be the last entry of the week. If I do have time, it'll for sure be a Magnetic Fields entry. However for today, It's two more obscurities that outside of the Pete & Pete universe are virtually ignored.

First up is "Long Trail" by Tara Key, a song which could be heard in "Das Bus," the episode from yesterday's entry, among others. Tara Key is better known as Antietam's front woman. According to allmusic, "Antietam is the South's answer to Yo La Tengo." They also describe the band as a "post-punk Lynyrd Skynyrd," so really...I haven't the faintest idea what to think. Post-punk Lynyrd Synyrd? For reals?

Well I've never heard Antietam myself, so I won't pass judgment. I also can't give much of an opinion on her solo material as this one song is entirely instrumental, perhaps as a transitional piece. The song does recall Yo La Tengo at their least sprawling moments. Coincidently, Yo La Tengo's power couple Ira Kaplan and Georgia Hubley play on the song's respective album, Burbon Country. The two are actually good friends with Tara Key and her own band sharing husband, Tim Harris. We love bands with married members!

Tara Key - Long Trail

The second band, Racecar, applied for the spot of school dance band in the episode "Dance Fever," however were turned down in favor of Luscious Jackson. However the good execs behind the show decided give some some of the brilliant Pete & Pete pie anyways, by featuring a song of theirs on the show instead. The band formed in 1993 in Washington D.C., released one album, and then went on hiatus. Their official website hasn't been updated since 2002, so I can't be sure what they're up to now, but it looks like they broke their hiatus and attempted to release a 2nd album. Oh well- "Wonderment" is a good song.

Racecar - Wonderment

The Adventures of Pete & Pete Episode 3x05: Dance Fever

Dancing...Little Pete's one secret fear. In an attempt to be excused from his first school dance, Little Pete chugs 15 gallons of creamed corn. After a trip to the hospital, Pete obtains a jar of glowing gut juice. Impressed, Nona suggests that Pete along with his gut fludge go to the dance and begin a get-rich-quick scheme to charge for looks at the the jar. In addition Pete could protect Nona from dancing with her "pop" (played by the one and only Iggy Pop) who is chaperoning the dance. However, sworn Little Pete enemy Pit Stain may put a bit of a damper on Pete's plan. Meanwhile , Older Pete is smitten by Luscious Jackson's guitarist and tries desperately to get her attention.

This episode also features a Larisa Oleynik (aka Alex Mack) cameo as a nurse, as well as some pretty fantastic Iggy Pop on stage moments.

Part 2

Part 3

Adventures of Pete & Pete Season 1 DVD

Adventures of Pete & Pete Season 2 DVD
Adventures of Pete & Pete Season 3 DVD Petition

Tuesday, August 21, 2007

Nice - Circuit Diagram, Theme from Nice

Nice are from New Zealand. That is the beginning and end of what I know about them. The majority of my searches for the band lead to The Nice, the much different British psychedelic/prog act. The mystery of Nice also makes me wonder how the fellow Pete & Pete obsessor who I grabbed the mp3s from a few years back even got a copy of their album. Apparently both the songs featured on the show are from the same album, and the album is titled "Nice." Sigh. I guess that rules out searching for the band + album title to get more info. Actually I just just tried that- it leads me to a band called Nice Nice.

Edit: I have searched for their label, Feel Good All Over, and have actually found their page! They have the album listed as "Apple Pie" and with a completely different track list than on allmusic. Oh well.

The first Nice song is entirely instrumental, and appeared in truncated form many times throughout the series. Well, there is one spoken line: a seductive uttering of "niceee" at the end. Hey, it's their theme.

Nice - Theme from Nice

Their second one is better known (but still obscure in every sense of the word.) It was notably featured during Nightcrawlers, X=Why? and New Year's Pete. If you're not careful the bass on this track could blow out your speakers, or the lint from your belly button. The almighty E chord. This song wasn't in that episode.

Nice - Circuit Diagram

The Adventures of Pete & Pete 3x12: Das Bus

This episode features a young Selma Blair as Penelope Ghiruto, Big Pete's love interest. Pete's High School is holding a job fair and under the influence of temporary love smitten insanity Pete has signed up for a week as a bus driver with Stu as his mentor. After an uninspired and frankly terrible first day, Stu prematurely fires Pete. However once Pete notices that Penelope is the last off the bus and there's some intimate alone time with that lone passenger, Pete has a new found enthusiasm for the job. He does everything in his willpower to convince Stu he is mature enough to drive the bus alone, including beginning a hot towel and haircut service, as well as serving grilled mesquite tenderloins for passengers. Can Pete manage to nab that ride alone with Penelope, or will Stu see through him?

The t-bone steak napkin scene in this episode is definitely one of the series' most absurd moments, though this episode is full of them. Also, look out for the 6ths' "Falling Out of Love (With You), Nice's "Theme from Nice," Chug's "Flowers," and Semi-Gloss' "The Sunburn Song" in the soundtrack.

Part 2

Part 3

Nice - Apple Pie/Nice

Petition for Adventures of Pete & Pete Season 3 DVD

Monday, August 20, 2007

The Gothic Archies - Your Long White Fingers

The Gothic Archies are Stephin Merritt's self-parody project. The songs are hilariously dark and bleak, a take on what the general public's perception of him as a person seems to be. The band has had only one official release, the EP The New Despair in 1996. After that, Merritt used the project to release songs for the audiotape versions Lemony Snicket's A Series of Unfortunate Events books. Merritt and Snicket (real name Daniel Handler) are good friends in real life, with Handler playing accordion on the Magnetic Fields magnum opus, 69 Love Songs and conducting the interview for the box set's extensive booklet. Last year all the audiotape songs were compiled and released in the Tragic Treasury compilation.

Continuing on my Pete & Pete binge, "Your Long White Fingers," a track from the original EP was featured during the series countless times. Just about every moment of profound realization or lingering sadness was set to this song. It's a fantastic track that evokes intense feelings of desolation and melancholy. The acoustic guitar, slide guitar and harmonica combination is always the perfect formula for a depressing song. However the way the instruments are arranged in this song sound unlike anything I've heard before. Rather than the long winded harmonica parts that come to mind, the playing in this song is short and concise, following the vocal melody. The structure is consistent throughout, the song beginning like a broken form being melded together only to disintegrate at the end.

The Gothic Archies - Your Long White Fingers

"Your long white fingers slither and glide
No gloves will hold them
They cannot hide
They frighten children, and
They make dogs howl
They glow in darkness, and
Fill the faithful with doubt

Your long white fingers
Passion and grace
Gesticulations from some dark place
They look unnatural
Faintly obscene
They loom large in all the strangest of dreams"

Now one of the best things you can see on YouTube, a Gothic Archies appearance on a local Atlanta news show.

As that Archies song is only a minute and a half, I'll include a bonus song. I've already done an entry on this track, but man oh man does it deserve another. Plus the mp3 link there is dead and this will be fulfilling a request for a re-upload. One of the best songs the world has never heard:

Semi-Gloss - The Sunburn Song

"The sun is strong and we still haven't learned
Your skin is pale and it's gonna burn
Little white flakes falling down to the ground
Dead and gone without a sound
New skin cells being born together
Trying to live in this nasty weather
Fighting hard just to say alive
But in this bright sun it's hard to survive

Oh the sol
goes down
So slow
on the western coast

A little trip to the beach for the day
You've got your shades and her bain de solei
You look so nice in the waves together
You wish this moment would last forever
Well don't look now but there's that other fella
Long sleeved shirt and a beach umbrella
They can't say that you never tried
But now your skin is red and you heart is fried

Oh the sol
goes down
So slow
on the western coast

Don't be afraid to get burned
Everybody has their turn
It's gonna hurt
You're gonna peel and scratch
But sooner or later you'll be back"

The Adventures of Pete & Pete Episode 3x13: Saturday

This episode marks the series' close...the final adventure ever. It's a unique episode with 5 unique plot lines that finally converge with the episode's end. There's Big Pete trying to break the years of haircut silence between him and his barber Dan, Little Pete who takes on a mobster identity to help his brother get some answers regarding what makes Dan tick, Monica who is busy searching for the Wellsville Ninja, Wayne whose new pair KrebStar shoes can't wait to be tried out, yet throughout the day reach times of close doom, Ellen, in bunny suit attire, who must deliver a pizza within the "Quick as a Bunny" time limit, and lastly, Bus Driver Stu who faces an impenetrable red light. This is another one of my favorites and ends the series on a perfect, fulfilling note.

Part 1

Part 2

Part 3

The Gothic Archies - The New Despair EP
Semi-Gloss - Semi-Gloss (get it for a penny!)

Petition for Season 3 DVD of the Adventures of Pete & Pete

Friday, August 17, 2007

Fat Tulips - So Unbelievable

Pete & Pete week is now coming to a close. With the looks of things, I'll have to extend this "week" into the next. I mean, I haven't even gotten into the Magnetic Fields yet.

Today's entry, the Fat Tulips, might steal the "most obscure band ever posted about on ISYES" award that I initially gave to yesterday's entry, Chug. Fat Tulips however at least have an artist description and a website, so I think that standing still belongs to Chug, for now at least. If I do an entry on Nice next week, that'll be another landmark post: the first by a band who seemingly have no pictures of themselves, or any merchandising links anywhere. Perhaps they're a band that truly died out before this internet age.

Here's what I know about the Fat Tulips: They were a UK twee band from the late 80's who only put out one full-length album, 1994's Starfish. However they've released over ten 7" singles and have appeared on even more compilations. Their current website is fantastically designed, and although small, they seem to have an enthusiastic fan base.

"So Unbelievable" was featured in the episode Splashdown, an episode I already featured in an entry for the Apples in Stereo song "Tidal Wave," a proto-Pete & Pete week entry. It would have made more sense to feature Nightcrawlers in that, as that's the Apples in Stereo episode, but perhaps I wasn't aware of dailymotion at that time. Whatever- it's all hindsight.

But back to the Fat Tulips... I love this track. The only downside I can see to it is that the lyrics will recall that terrible EMF song of a similar title. Shudder..

Fat Tulips - So Unbelievable

"Well hello boy do you remember me?
We met at a party a couple of years ago
I gave you my number
but I guess you threw it away
Like you threw away your virginity
She didn't like you anyhow
And anyway she's dropped you now
Arrogance your middle name
You're unbelievable! Unbelievable!
So unbelievable!
Well hello my friend it's me again
Do you still love that girl you're with?
Or is she just another way to pass the time?
I heard you're up to your old tricks
You've been sleeping all round town
With anyone who'll fool around
Moan when she says that you're unfaithful
Unbelievable! Unbelievable!
So unbelievable!So I guess you think I'm perfect
I'm nothing but, but I don't lie
Cos when I speak my mind I'm honest...
And you're unbelievable, unbelievable!
So unbelievable!"

The Adventures of Pete & Pete Episode 2x04: The Big Quiet

This is a bit of an underrated episode in my opinion. Little Pete has his first experience of the death of someone close to him, in his case his pet lizard Gary. While he organizes an epic funeral, Big Pete struggles with the distance he feels from his Dad. Conversations have become incredibly awkward between the two, to the extent that Pete keeps a sandwich on hand to stuff into his mouth for times of prospective conversation, and even to taking up sign language so speaking can be avoided all together. When a trip to the lizard farm to get Little Pete a new pet is mentioned, Pete just about loses it. A 2 hour drive with just him and Dad...conversation the only thing to pass the time. Can Pete memorize enough "Dad Facts" and conversation topics in time to avoid a lifetime of awkwardness?

"I don't want to wear a sock!"

The Magnetic Fields' "Why I Cry" gets a lot of play during this episode. But alas, I've already covered that song.

The Adventures of Pete & Pete Season 2

Thursday, August 16, 2007

Chug - Flowers

Chug = the biggest obscurity ever posted about on this blog. I don't even know what to say about them: there's practically no information anywhere. The only information I've found, a mere quote, is wholly inaccurate, or at least in my experience of Chug, which is this one song. "Noisy sludge-filled garage metal:" If I don't want someone to listen to a particular band I'll be sure to use that quote. This song has appeared in several episodes of the show, "X=Why?," "Das Bus," and the episode I featured yesterday, "35 Hours," playing during the Wrigley 500. Though it's near impossible for me to hear these songs objectively and without the Pete & Pete context, I'd describe "Flowers" as lo-fi garage surf punk, if categorization was absolutely necessary. It's an exciting song, perfectly suitable for a bicycle race, but also has an imminent quality to it. You're having a blast at the moment, but soon things will be out of control. In a brilliant way of course. Just don't think you'll be hearing the song's "...Looking for the fucking flowers" chorus anywhere in show.

Chug - Flowers

The Adventures of Pete & Pete Episode 1-10: What We Did On Our Summer Vacation

This Pete & Pete episode was one of the 5 full-length specials made before the show was given the green-light for a full series. Another one of my favorites. I actually have a yearly tradition with this episode where I watch it the day before I head back for classes. If this episode doesn't take you back to the summers of your childhood, I pity you. In it, the two Petes and Ellen attempt to befriend local ice-cream man and hero of all Wellsville's children, Mr. Tastee, after realizing that apart from his customers he's without any real friends. Their concern unfortunately drives Mr. Tastee out of town, much to the dismay of kids everywhere who hear the bells of the Tastee mobile as the most beautiful sound on earth. With the ice cream shortage driving residents to the brink of insanity, the Petes and Ellen begin a strenuous hunt to bring Mr. Tastee back to Wellsville before the summer's end.

The episode features cameos by R.E.M's Michael Stipe as Captain Scrumm, proprietor of the Sludgesickle and the B-52's Kate Pierson as Mrs. Vanderveer, the blind millionaire who once was involved with Mr. Tastee. Another interesting thing to watch out for is the blurred out phone number on the"Have You Seen Mr. Tastee?" flyers. During the special's initial airing, unbeknownst to the creators, the 800-number listed was currently in use by an insurance company. After the company was swarmed by hundreds of calls with kids saying they've seen Mr. Tastee, the number needed to be censored for later airings.

Oh the guy in the Mr. Tastee suit? It's Toby Huss, aka Artie.

Tuesday, August 14, 2007

The 6ths - Falling Out of Love (With You)

Day two of Pete & Pete week. This 6ths song is one of my favorites to ever air during the series, yet it was only in one episode, "Das Bus" from season 3. Apart from Polaris, Stephin Merrit has contributed the most to the show's soundtrack, with a total of 5 songs (3 from the Magnetic Fields, 1 from the Gothic Archies and 1 by The 6ths.) Having written an album of 69 love songs as well as a record where every song begins with "I," Stephin Merritt is no stranger to conceptual projects. Also no stranger to irony, Merritt claims he started the 6ths after he noticed that there was no tribute album for himself. All the 6ths songs are thus written and played by him, however each song has a different artist providing the vocals. "Falling Out of Love (With You)" is sung by Dean Wareham, previously of Galaxie 500 and Luna, currently playing with his wife under the moniker Dean & Britta. It's my favorite song by the 6ths, and even one of my favorites of all-time. I cannot recommend this song enough.

The 6ths - Falling Out of Love (With You)

"In an old Silver Line
I was yours, you were mine
I was hoarse, you were mean
We designed drum machines

But every day in every way
I'm falling out of love with you
Every kiss means less and less
I'm falling out of love with you
Every hour kills a flower
I'm falling out of love with you
You just bore me more and more
I'm falling out of love with you

They made sounds much like drums
I was young you were dumb
Now you're older and I'm wiser
We design synthesizers

But every day in every way
I'm falling out of love with you
Every kiss means less and less
I'm falling out of love with you
Every hour kills a flower
I'm falling out of love with you
You just bore me more and more
I'm falling out of love with you"

I'm also including a great article on the show which perfectly summarizes why I love it so much, and feel that it's the best thing ever to grace the television set.

Smiling Strange: The Adventures of Pete and Pete
by Luke Geddes

A superhero in pajamas and horn-rimmed glasses; 12-year-old Pete, tattooed like a sailor; his similarly redheaded brother, also named Pete; a passive-aggressive school bus driver; the metal plate in mom's head; a mysterious costumed ice cream man; Mrs. Blowtard's hypnotic arm flub; the wailing vocals of "Marmalade Cream". Such unique and beautiful imagery may explain why devoted fans have not forgotten The Adventures of Pete and Pete since it first aired on Nickelodeon in 1993. It certainly left an indelible mark in my mind. With seasons one and two already out on DVD, lifelong fans like myself can give the DVD sets to their parents to explain why they turned out to be such warped individuals. The resonance stems from the show's truthful approach to childhood. It's not overtly nostalgic like The Wonder Years, nor is it bitter and cynical like Todd Solondz' Welcome to the Dollhouse. Pete and Pete's depiction of childhood is trumped only by Lynda Barry's Marlys comic strips in terms of being accurate, funny and downright revelatory.

When you watch Pete and Pete, you will be transported to a time when a staring contest is a perfectly legitimate way to settle an argument and a family road trip is no less than an Odyssean journey. The recurring "International Adult Conspiracy" recalls those early feelings of that dichotomy between grownups and kids; their ways were incomprehensibly foreign and superfluous, and vice versa. In one of many shockingly true moments, little Pete interrogates Dad, "So you don't like the taste of coffee, but you drink it anyway?" No other TV show has accomplished such a precise portrayal of childhood, except perhaps The Simpsons (when it used to be good). The definition of wacky, Artie The Strongest Man in the World (Toby Huss, AKA "The Wiz" on that episode of Seinfeld) is what every young viewer expects himself to grow up into. It's heartening to think the program had a small hand in forever subverting its viewers' opinions on our sterile, money-obsessed world.

Though in the tradition of the early-90s fad of "quirky" representations of small town America (stemming from seminal series like Northern Exposure and Twin Peaks), in the creation of enigmatic every-town Wellsville, we have a place like no other. The setting combines a 1950s pastiche with 1990s hipsterism. In Wellsville, the drive-in is still where the teenagers hang out on Friday nights and the REM-esque jangling of Polaris will always be heard from Mrs. Chicutti's garage. Wellsville is viewed through a child's perceptive and mercurial lens. Mundane events like bus rides and shop class are presented as the epical "today's adventure" they actually can be.

Pete and Pete seems shockingly aberrant in that it never condescends to hackneyed moral reasoning or black-and-white explanation —— things unavoidable in today's crop of children's television. Pete and Pete accepts ambiguity, albeit with an exaggerated, very surreal bent. On the commentary track for season one's "Day of the Dot", creators Will McRobb and Chris Viscardi discuss the reasons why important aspects of the show —— why both brothers are named Pete, Wellsville's specific location, the actual names of Mom and Dad —— are left unexplained. "Everything [in TV] seemed so overexplained... the idea was to put some mystery back into kids' life," says McRobb. Director Katherine Dieckmann adds, "those mysteries are part of respecting a kid's POV."
Season two features "Farewell, My Little Viking", possibly the strongest episode of the entire series. In it, Little Pete's personal superhero Artie is run out of town by the International Adult Conspiracy, which is concerned with Artie's unusual lifestyle —— he lives in porta-potty, is in love with the smell of tire air, views slacks as a form of currency and encourages kids to act like kids. The two-part installment serves as a strikingly clever and surprisingly insightful allegory of a child's transition into adolescence, as well as a showcase for the show's zany humor. If your parents were too cheap for cable of if you're just unfamiliar with Pete and Pete, this may be the place to start.

It should be noted that the show had the coolest rock and roll and celebrity guest stars including: Iggy Pop, Adam West, Michael Stipe, Marshall Crenshaw, Debbie Harry of Blondie, Steve Buscemi and even Hunter S. Thompson. And it was all rounded out by a catchy, post-grunge alternative soundtrack of that newly-nostalgic 1990s zeitgeist.

Considering it originally aired on Nickelodeon, The Adventures of Pete and Pete balances quiet subversion and heartfelt schmaltz to a remarkably sophisticated degree. This is children's television too smart for even adult TV. Finally, here I must regretfully note that the third and final season, originally scheduled for February 28th DVD release, has been inexplicably cancelled. However, I can't help but conclude with the most poignant words of Artie, The Strongest Man In The World: PIPE!

Episode 1x03: Nightcrawlers

In this episode Little Pete has had enough of his 9PM bedtime. Using reverse psychology, Mom decides to let Pete stay up as late as he wants. Her plan backfires when Pete decides to one-up her and attempt to beat the world record for sleepless nights, 11 days. One of the series' best.

The 6ths - Wasps' Nests

The Adventures of Pete & Pete Season 1 DVD
The Adventures of Pete & Pete Season 2 DVD
The Adventures of Pete & Pete Season 3 Petition

Monday, August 13, 2007

Polaris - Hey Sandy

Welcome to Day 1 of the Adventures of Pete & Pete week! I'll begin with no other than the classic theme song, "Hey Sandy." This song has been subject to some controversy, as neither the creators, nor the band will reveal what exactly the third line of the song is. However, if you go pretty much anywhere on the internet, you'll see it transcribed as "Can You Settle to Shoot Me?" This makes sense in context, as the song is rumored to be about the Kent State shootings of 1970. The song's Sandy may be Sandra Scheuer, a victim of the shooting. Now this is obviously a morbid subject for the theme of kid's show (yet it's so much more than that), so it makes sense that those involved are reluctant to speak about it. However, in 1970, Harvey Andrews had also written a song entitled "Hey Sandy," directly and indisputably about the shooting. Why would Polaris do pretty much the same thing 23 years later? Polaris' song could be about nothing at all, and the mystery third line may just be gibberish. In any case, I doubt we'll ever get a straightforward answer on the issue.

Polaris - Hey Sandy

"Hey smilin' strange
You lookin' happily deranged
Can you settle to shoot me?
Or have you picked your target yet
Hey Sandy (ai yai yai yai)...
Don't you talk back (ai yai yai yai), Hey Sandy
Four feet away
End of speech it's the end of the day
We was only funnin',
But guiltily I thought you had it comin'
Hey Sandy (ai yai yai yai)
Don't ya talk back, Hey Sandy"

(ai yai yai yai...)Hey Sandy
Don't you talk back
(ai yai yai yai...)Hey Sandy
Don't you talk back
Hey Sandy ay ay..."

Alternate, Kid-Friendly lyrics:

"Hey smiling strange,
You're looking happily deranged,
Can you sale the shim-ba?
Or have you picked your dog out yet?

Hey Sandy!
Does your dog bite?
Hey Sandy?

Barking away,
End of species is the end of the day.
We was only funning.
But guilty, I thought she had it coming."

The Adventures of Pete & Pete Episode 1x01: The King of the Road

The Adventures of Pete & Pete - Season 1

Music from the Adventures of Pete & Pete

Friday, August 10, 2007

Of Montreal - Tim, I Wish You Were Born a Girl

Of Montreal are easily one of my favorite bands that are still actively making music today. They've been together for 10 years, have put out 8 albums, 6 compilations, and 4 EPs. Simply choosing one favorite song by them is practically impossible. However if I had to cut it down to my top 5, "Tim, I Wish You Were Born a Girl" would undoubtedly make the list. It comes from Of Montreal's first album, Cherry Peel, released in July of 1997, when Kevin Barnes was 21. It's a perfect little song, incredibly sweet and pure, catchy, and lovable. Of Montreal make me love life.

Of Montreal - Tim, I Wish You Were Born a Girl

"Tim, wish you were born a girl,
So I could've been your boyfriend.
I know it's not possible now.
I just never met a girl I like half as much as you.

And we could lay around in bed, stay there all day,
Or at least until the afternoon
And I could make you spaghetti with tomato sauce
With just a touch of oregano and a parsley stem.

And then when you got sick,
I could take the day off work.
I could've made you chicken soup,
And we could watch soap operas
- oh, those TV dramas!
I could catch your cold
and you could take care of me.

If I could've met you at school, or met you at work,
It would have changed everything.
Those years of losing, confusion and insecurity,
They would have been shared,
they would have been easier.

Tim, wish you were born a girl,
So I could've been your fiancé.
I'm not saying you can't be all these things for me,
But it's just not the same because you're a man,
and so am I".

A pretty decent homemade video for the song:

Of Montreal - Cherry Peel @Polyvinyl Records

Thursday, August 9, 2007

John Cale - Paris 1919

John Cale is a musical genius. His creative influence on the Velvet Underground exceeded that of any other member, and yes, that includes Lou Reed. It's apparent the impact he had on the band by comparing the sound of the first two VU records, The Velvet Underground & Nico and White Light/White Heat, and then the following two Cale-less albums, The Velvet Underground and Loaded. Band members has claimed that the sonic change has to do with the band's equipment getting stolen in the LAX airport, but that obviously should be taken with a grain of salt. John Cale's departure wasn't exactly on the best of terms. Though Lou Reed and John Cale reunited for a one night Paris show in 1972, otherwise they practically didn't speak until beginning to work on the Andy Warhol tribute album Songs for Drella in 1989. The two just went in different directions after the VU: Lou Reed becoming more of a glam rockstar while John Cale embraced his composer upbringing, working on Nico's more avant-garde follow-ups to Chelsea Girl, The Marble Index and Desertshore, as well as with Nick Drake on Bryter Layter. He released his first solo album Vintage Violence in 1970 which was met with significant critical acclaim. However two years later he recorded what to this day is regarded as his masterpiece, Paris 1919. It's simultaneously Cale's most accessible yet most rewarding record. It's exquisitely composed yet marks Cale first venture into pop songwriting. I'll be featuring the title track here. It's absolutely gorgeous. I especially love the bridge around the 2:20 mark with the understated bird chirps in the background.

John Cale - Paris 1919

"She makes me so unsure of myself
Standing there but never talking sense
Just a visitor you see
So much wanting to be seen
She'd open up the door and vaguely carry us away

It's the customary thing to say or do
To a disappointed proud man in his grief
And on Fridays she'd be there
And on Wednesday not at all
Just casually appearing from the clock across the hall

You're a ghost la la la
You're a ghost
I'm in the church and I've come
To claim you with my iron drum
la la la la la la

The Continent's just fallen in disgrace
William William William Rogers put it in its place
Blood and tears from old Japan
Caravans and lots of jam and maids of honor
singing crying singing tediously

You're a ghost la la la
You're a ghost
I'm the bishop and I've come
To claim you with my iron drum
la la la la la la

Efficiency efficiency they say
Get to know the date and tell the time of day
As the crowds begin complaining
How the Beaujolais is raining
Down on darkened meetings on the Champs Elysee"

Now John Cale performing "Venus in Furs" on Later with Jools Holland

Final Fantasy's cover of "Paris 1919"

John Cale - Paris 1919

Wednesday, August 8, 2007

Feist - Somewhere Down the Road

Feist has been blowing up lately. She's one of Vh1's "You Oughta Know" artists, and apparently it's hard to avoid "1234" if you're in a mall clothing store, or Canada. It's hard not to see the appeal in her, as though her music is very accessible, it's quality as well.

"Somewhere Down the Road" is brand new, but as the case with Cat Power two entries back, it was written by Jesse Harris. Though I could go on for a week about the Hottest State soundtrack itself, me posting all the best tracks wouldn't exactly be fair to them. I'll be keeping it to these two. Despite the film looking to be a suckfest, the soundtrack is still worth picking up. It'll look good next to the Wicker Park and Garden State soundtracks, aka, good soundtracks for terrible movies.

Feist - Somewhere Down the Road

"Somewhere down the road
I’ll see you again
I don’t know when
But I know you’ll be the same
And I know I’ll be the same

You’ll free me again
But I’ll never be free
From memories
And I know your life will change
And I know my life will change

Unchained unchained
We drift away
Like roses on the sea

Stars in the sky
They’re always alone
They’re on their own
But you know they’ll always shine
And I know they’ll always shine
All time"

The Hottest State Soundtrack

Tuesday, August 7, 2007

The Slits - Shoplifting + Typical Girls

The Slits were one of the first significant all female post-punk bands. Though they could barely play their instruments when they first started, they toured with the Clash on their "White Riot" tour, along with the Buzzcocks, and would be an important influence for the Riot Grrrl movement. Additionally, they were friends with the Pop Group, a band I covered a few entries back, sharing a drummer with them as well as releasing a split EP.

The band only released one true album, 1979's Cut. Their 1981 follow-up Return of the Giant Slits had a more intentionally commercial sound, something that alienated many fans, making the album a disappointment that and never even received a US release date.

I'm now posting two songs from Cut, as "Shoplifting," one of my favorite tracks, is only about a minute and a half long. The other song "Typical Girls" is one the of record's poppiest songs, and not surprisingly was promoted as a single.

The Slits - Shoplifting

"Put the cheddar in the pocket
Put the rest under the jacket
Talk to the cashier, he won't suspect
And if he does...
Do a runner!

Ten quid for the lot
We pay fuck all
Babylonian won't lose much
And we'll have dinner tonight
Do a runner!

Camera's trying to watch us
Mirrors and TV
But they're not gonna catch us
'Cause we're gonna gonna gonna run run run
Do a runner!

Ten quid for the lot
We pay fuck all
Babylonian won't lose much
And we'll have dinner tonight
Do a runner!

(I've pissed in my knickers)

The Slits - Typical Girls

"Don't create
Don't rebel
Have intuition
Can't decide

Typical girls get upset too quickly
Typical girls can't control themselves
Typical girls are so confusing
Typical girls - you can always tell
Typical girls don't think too clearly
Typical girls are all predictable

Typical girls try to be
Typical girls very well

Typical girls are looking for something
Typical girls fall under spells
Typical girls buy magazines
Typical girls feel like hell
Typical girls worry about spots, fat, and natural smells
Sniky fake smells

Don't create
Don't rebel
Have intuition
Don't drive well

Can't decide what clothes to wear
Typical girls are sensitive
Typical girls are emotional
Typical girls are cruel and bewitching
She's a femme fatale
Typical girls stand by their man
Typical girls are really swell
Typical girls learn how to act shocked
Typical girls don't rebel

Who invented the typical girl?
Who's bringing out the new improved model?
And there's another marketing ploy
Typical girl gets the typical boy

The typical boy gets the typical girl
The typical girl gets the typical boy

Are emotional"

"Typical Girls" Promo video

"Shoplifting" Live on 2006 Reunion Tour

The Slits - Cut

Monday, August 6, 2007

Cat Power - It's Alright to Fail

Today's entry is a brand new Cat Power song off of the upcoming Hottest State soundtrack. I can't attest for the film (though the advance reviews haven't been particularly favorable) its soundtrack is definitely solid. In addition to Cat Power, it features new music by Feist, Bright Eyes, Emmylou Harris, Willie Nelson, M. Ward, Norah Jones, and others. The catch is that the new music wasn't written by their respective performers, but rather entirely by singer/songwriter Jesse Harris. For a guy whose greatest triumph was a collaboration with Norah Jones, he's sealed himself a pretty respectable line-up here.

The song Chan chose to cover is excellent, and if you didn't know that it wasn't before hand, both musically and lyrically, it may as well have been written by her. It's a sparse take, only vocals and minimal guitar, a sharp contrast to her live show as of lately. More often than not, I like my Cat Power this way the best.

Cat Power - It's Alright to Fail

"Out on the corner you look so pale
Your ghost is wandering home
But oh, baby, it’s alright to fail
Your tongue is twisted
Your teeth are nails
They drove your voice in your throat
But oh, baby, it’s alright to fail
Tell me, don’t leave
Tell me, tell me
Your heart is beating
I hear it pound
If you’ve got something to say
Oh, baby, please don’t let me down
Tell me, don’t leave
Tell me, tell me
The night is coming
I hear the wail of people crying alone
But oh, baby, it’s alright to fail
Oh, baby, it’s alright to fail"

The Hottest State Soundtrack

Friday, August 3, 2007

Teenage Fanclub - The Concept

Teenage Fanclub are a band that I discovered before my time. I picked up their album Bandwagonesque used for $3.99 when I was 14. I can't remember how I had heard of them, but I'm betting it had to do with at least one of these three facts:

1) They were one of Weezer's contemporary influences
2) Kurt Cobain proclaimed them as "the best band in the world"
3) Bandwagonesque beat out Nevermind for Spin's #1 album of 1991

At that age I was always hesitant to blindly buy albums. I had to be familiar with at least one track to justify a purchase. However at that price and the word about it, I guess I had to make an exception. I'm glad I did. While I really liked the album at the time and had a few personal favorite tracks, I was hearing the album in a different way a few years after and was appreciating it a lot more.

Here's "The Concept," a fantastic song with all the ingredients you want. I somehow never checked out any other Teenage Fanclub albums. It's about time to change that. Especially considering how so many of their albums have a $6.99 retail price.

Teenage Fanclub - The Concept

"She wears denim wherever she goes
Says she's gonna get some records by the Status Quo
Oh yeah...Oh yeah...

Still she won't be forced against her will
Says she don't do drugs but she does the pill
Oh yeah...Oh yeah...

I didn't want to hurt you oh yeah...
I didn't want to hurt you oh yeah...

Says she likes my hair 'cause it's down my back
Says she likes the group 'cause we pull in the slack
Oh yeah...Oh yeah...

When she's at the gig she takes her car
And she drive us home if it is in a bar
Oh yeah...Oh yeah...

I didn't want to hurt you oh yeah...
I didn't want to hurt you oh yeah..."

Teenage Fanclub - Bandwagonesque

Thursday, August 2, 2007

The Pastels - I'm Alright With You

The Pastels formed in Glasgow, Scotland during 1982. In the 80's, Scotland had a pretty significant indie scene, also spawning the Jesus and Mary Chain, The Vaselines, Orange Juice, and Teenage Fanclub. Also, along with the Field Mice, and Beat Happening, they were one of the most significant twee bands of the 80's.

For the song, there's not too much to say. It's pleasant, reassuring, and catchy. For a day like this, that's all you need.

The Pastels - I'm Alright With You

"If you are feeling down
And want some reason to come around
You know it won’t be wrong
And you are upside down

If you begin at the end
Or halfway through or somewhere else
It makes some kind of sense
When you are my best friend

I’m alright with you

If you are inside outside
Some people might call you stupid
I don’t care what they said
When you are by my side
If you are back to front
And find your mind somewhat absent
You better hang on to what you got
It’s everything that I want

I’m alright with you

You know I’d cross the desert wastes for you
Watch the sun burn up the sky
You know I’d wait a thousand years for you
I love you ‘til there’s nothing left"

Now the video for "Crawl Babies," another song from Up For a Bit With the Pastels:

The Pastels - Up For a Bit With the Pastels

Wednesday, August 1, 2007

The Shaggs - Philosophy of the World

The Shaggs are a bad band. Often considered to be one of the worst ever. Normally that wouldn't be much of a recommendation, but for the Shaggs it's what makes them what they are. You see, they're terrible in the way that The Brain that Wouldn't Die is... charmingly bad. Rather than being repulsed and wishing it would go away, you instead smile, laugh, and keep listening. For a bit. Despite it being only 30 minutes long, I can't make it through their one and only album, 1968's Philosophy of the World in one sitting. The instruments are all out of tune, the playing is jarring off-time, and their musical skills are rudimentary at best. Despite this, the band gained a small but loyal fan base, and were surprisingly influential, specifically in the development of twee-pop. Beat Happening and Deerhoof both embrace the band, as well as Kurt Cobain who put Philosophy of the World in his top 5 albums of all time and Frank Zappa who claimed it as his third favorite.

The story behind the band was in the mid 60's, Austin Wiggin Jr, the poor father of the three girls (in an attempt to fulfill a dream of his) took his daughters out of school, bought them instruments, and gave them music lessons in order for them to be "a famous band." He arranged for them to play shows every Saturday night at a local club, as well as to record an album, driving down from their rural New Hampshire home to an obscure studio in Massachusetts to record Philosophy of the World in one day. Some may view the father's drive as unrealistic, or even insane (saying that they needed to cut an album "while they were still hot"), or maybe it was all out of love, him truly wishing that his daughters would become something. However, it's hard to deny that he was overbearing, forbidding his girls to date and to mingle with most other kids in town, and restricting their activities to a rigid daily schedule, always including hours of exercise and practice.

There's an in depth article about the band at this site, going into more details about the personal lives of the band, such as times when the band was pelted with trash at early gigs, and rumors of sexual abuse. Unfortunate and unsettling stuff..

The song I'm posting is the title-track from the album, one that Austin was never satisfied with during the girl's practice time. However in an ironic turn, the one time they played the song in a way he approved of was the same day he died in 1975, suffering from a massive heart attack at age 47 (It's even more ironic considering the song's last line.) The band then was no more, but however re-formed in 2000 for a reunion show in NYC. Dot Wiggin, the lead guitarist, vocalist, and songwriter currently runs the website for the band.

The Shaggs - Philosophy of the World

"Oh, the rich people want what the poor people's got
And the poor people want what the rich people's got
And the skinny people want what the fat people's got
And the fat people want what the skinny people's got

You can never please anybody in this world

The short people want what the tall people's got
And the tall people want what the short people's got
The little kids want what the big kid's got
And the big kids want what the little kid's got

You can never please anybody in this world

Oh, the girls with short hair want long hair
And the girls with long hair want short hair
Oh, the boys with cars want motorcycles
And the boys with motorcycles want cars

You can never please anybody in this world

It doesn't matter what you do
It doesn't matter what you say
There will always be
One who wants things the opposite way

It doesn't matter where you go
It doesn't matter who you see
There will always be
Someone who disagrees

We do our best
We try to please
But we're like the rest
Whenever at ease

Oh, the rich people want what the poor people's got
And the poor people want what the rich people's got
And the skinny people want what the fat people's got
And the fat people want what the skinny people's got

You can never please anybody in this world"

Here's a bonus song hosted by another Shaggs website, written about the girl's lost cat, Foot Foot

The Shaggs - My Pal Foot Foot

"My pal's name is Foot Foot
He always likes to roam
My pal's name is Foot Foot
I never find him home

I go to his house
Knock at his door
People come out and say
Foot Foot don't live here no more

My pal Foot Foot
Always likes to roam
My pal Foot Foot
Now he has no home

Where will Foot Foot go
What will Foot Foot do
Oh, Foot Foot
I wish I could find you

I've looked here, I've looked there
I've looked everywhere
Oh, Foot Foot
Why can't I find you?

Foot Foot, where can you be?
Foot Foot, why won't you answer me?
Foot Foot, Oh Foot Foot
Wherever you are
I want you to come home with me

I don't have time to roam
I have things to do
I have to go home
Oh, Foot Foot, where are you?

If Foot Foot didn't like to roam so well
He would still have a place to dwell
Foot Foot, please answer me
I know where you are
You're behind that tree

Foot Foot, please come to me
Foot Foot, now that you're here
Won't you come home
Foot Foot, promise me this
That you will never again roam"

A video for the song:

The Shaggs - Philosophy of the World