Thursday, March 07, 2013

Hot! Live! Music!

James Mercer, "Simple Song"
A quick history of me and the Shins.  Like most folks, I first heard of them through "Garden State," though not even Natalie Portman's breathless endorsement got me to actually listen to the music.  Nevertheless, when they guested on SNL soon after, I was like alright, the Shins, they're cool.  Then they SUCKED.  Honestly, I'm probably over-exaggerating how bad their performance was but my memory was that it was just a terrible mash of every indie rock stereotype imaginable.  This was my dominant opinion of the band until they guested on Saturday Night Live again last year, played this song and were awesome.  I suppose one of these days I should actually listen to some Shins music and create an opinion that isn't based on brief outings on sketch comedy shows notorious for poor sound mixing of live performances but meh.  I'll give it another decade.

Beck, "Clap Hands"
I'm pretty sure I've actually linked to this in an old Hot! Live! Music! post before but that video is long dead.  It occurs to me that I could keep this feature going in perpetuity based on the same 40-50 videos since they'll inevitably keep getting taken down from YouTube and then re-posted in the future.  As Leonard Nimoy would say, the cosmic ballet…goes on.

David Byrne, "Psycho Killer"

Metric, "Gimme Sympathy"
Jesus Christ.  So I'm already kicking myself for getting really into Metric JUST as they conclude their tour, thus making me wait for at least a couple of more years before I can see them live and really confirm my fandom.  Then, I find out that they ended their damn concerts with this acoustic version of "Gimme Sympathy" and yeah, watch this Lisa, you can actually pinpoint the moment when my heart ripped in half.  (BTW, I guess you don't always need to see a band live to "confirm your fandom."  Like, if you never saw the Beatles in concert, I won't look down on you for liking them.  But, if they ever figure out corpse re-animation, I fully expect you to be first in line for tickets for the Beatles' Sgt. Pepper's Fusion-Powered Hearts Club Band tour.)

The Watchmen, "Any Day Now"
Canadian content!  You'll notice there are more than a few acoustic performances here and frankly, it's an easy out.  It's not hard to find great acoustic renditions of virtually anything online but come on, aren't songs like this fun?  The album version is full o' guitars and is kind of sludgy but as we see from this stripped-down version, "Any Day Now" is a helluva song.  Who knew?  Was there an entire generation of Canadian alt-rock music that was secretly great but buried under grungy production since, as How I Met Your Mother taught us, Canada invented grunge in 1996.  Also, hey wait, the FIRST auto-fill for Geddy Lee on YouTube "How I Met Your Mother"?  The man's been a big rock star for over 40 years!  All that is outflanked by a random sitcom cameo from three months ago?

No comments: