My Weekly Five (Susan Dolan)

1. “Cannons” by YOUTH LAGOON (Upcoming Release on Fat Possum, 2011) ::: New Discovery Pick

The songs from Youth Lagoon’s upcoming album really get me lost… in a “staring out the backseat window” kind of way. The use of reverb, distant-sounding vocals, and indecipherable lyrics paint fuzzy nostalgic images. I guess, without the distraction of detail, it’s easy to slip into a dream state. Two songs “July” and “Cannons” are available for free download on his bandcamp page, and the stellar full-length is due out on Fat Possum September 27. Really good!

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Free downloads here: http://youthlagoon.bandcamp.com

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/youthlagoon

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2. “L.A.” by THE FALL (from This Nation’s Saving Grace, 1988) ::: Personal Song Pick

Sometimes I can’t help myself from music supervising moments in my own life– driving through Hollywood at night, for example. And for that, the perfect track is “L.A.” by The Fall. The pulsing forward-motion and attitude that comes across in this song is unbelievable. It matches street-energy perfectly. Lyrics aren’t necessary. It’s all about the vibe. Besides, Mark E. Smith’s shit-hot mouth noises and “L.L.L.L.L.L. A.A.A.A.A.A.A.A...” kind of say it all.

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http://www.visi.com/fall.intro.html

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3. “Crowned In Chrome” by CROOKED FINGERS (from Crooked Fingers, 2000) ::: Under-Appreciated Song

Archers Of Loaf is getting a good amount of well-deserved praise right now, considering their reunion shows and reissues, etc. However, it’s the catalog of Eric Bachmann’s post-Archers project, Crooked Fingers, I tend to revisit more often. I like the minimal instrumentation on songs like “Crowned In Chrome” because it really puts front and center Bachmann’s captivating voice and mastery of lyricism: “There comes a time a man just cannot trust his freedom, leeching off a host that will disease him, shining up the shoes that send you on your way, into your darkest hour.” Slaughters me every time.

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http://www.crookedfingers.com/
Twitter: @crooked_fingers

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A new album by Crooked Fingers is due out October 11 on Merge.

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4. “Edge Of Seventeen” by STEVIE NICKS (from Bella Donna, 1981) ::: A Personal Theme Song (for somebody)

Someone asked me recently, “What’s your personal theme song?” I drew a blank. I mean, there are a lot of songs I would consider as my anthem. Those of Bob Dylan or Sleater-Kinney maybe? It depends on what I’m going through that day. In any case, it’d be difficult to commit to just one song. I will admit, however, “Edge Of Seventeen” would make an excellent theme song for somebody. To me, it has always been like a female version of “Eye Of The Tiger” (from Rocky). Maybe it’s that chugging guitar rhythm or Stevie’s mega-tough vocal delivery, as if she’s about to destroy someone/something. After all, Nicks did write the song to express grief over John Lennon’s death (“Words from a poet and a voice from a choir…”). Heck, that being said, maybe it is my anthem after all. I’ll meet you in the boxing ring.

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5. “Love Me” and “Bedazzled” by DUDLEY MOORE and PETER COOK (from the film Badazzled, London Records, 1968) ::: Music Placement Love

Fans of British comedy, this is for you! The story goes something like this: Peter Cook is the Devil–he gives Dudley Moore seven wishes but then sabotages each of them, crushing Moore’s chances of finally making it with Margaret. In this sequence, Moore’s wish is to be a pop star. Just when he thinks he’s won Margaret over with the melodramatic “Love Me,” Cook shows up out of nowhere with the emotionally detached “Bedazzled” and the girls go wild. Dudley, outsmarted once again! (Moore doubled as the film’s real life composer, just so you know.) Clearly these are spoofs based on what were modern day pop stars. Yet, when taken out of context, the songs are actually pretty incredible. In fact, the production quality is spot on (if not better) than what you would’ve heard on the pop charts at the time. I think the reason why this scene is brilliant/hilarious to me is the same reason why Lonely Island from Saturday Night Live works so well. Goofball lyrics are one thing, but it’s total authenticity in the execution that makes them priceless.

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The Lonely Island – “I’m On A Boat (feat. T Pain)”

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