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


Kari said...

Wonderful! Thank you, for this and the for entire series of Pete & Pete flashbacks so far. I'm pretty sure 'Your Long White Fingers' was playing in my brain somewhere the first time I read that the Season 3 DVD had been canceled. Tragic!

Anonymous said...

Hey I'd love it if you could send me "Your Long White Fingers", I can't find it ANYWHERE :(


Anonymous said...

Totally new to me! Who is this guy? Well, anyways... I'd better go and buy kamagra for the night instead of reading blogs.. my wife could kill me!