From The Smithereens‘ Green Thoughts Lp, released as a single on August 3, 1988.
Born on this day in 1942, in Inglewood, California, musician Brian Wilson. A founding member of The Beach Boys, Wilson’s talents and accomplishments are too big and numerous to be written here.
Head On A Swivel
When The Beatles broke big in America, American groups started cropping up everywhere, intent on capturing that same Beatles’ magic. Bands like The Knickerbockers and The Cyrkle were looking to do much more than most of the also-rans, though. Their aim, inspired by the lads from Liverpool, was to create something with the same level of enthusiasm and electricity.
Here, well-known popster Gary Ritchie continues that tradition, with a wink and a nod, and his heart in the right place. He is, after all, along with musical partner Jeff King, responsible for the cult-favorite release, Beat The Meatles.
“Maybe It’ll Be Tonight”, takes a post-punk stab at what might’ve been an early MTV hit, when power pop was really becoming a thing. The title track, reminiscent of The Dave Clark Five’s “Over and Over” is another winner, and gets seriously-close to that ’65 energy.
My fave of the set, however, is “Arms Around A Memory,” which boasts a catchy melody and jangly guitar sound that pop dreams are made of. In a perfect world, that’d be the A-side of Capitol Records vinyl single, spinning on the Dansette.
Yep, it’s been in a million movies and commercials, and a lot of people are sick of it. Not me. I still love the song, I still love the video. I remember hearing it on the radio and how much I loved it. It sounded like the 60’s, just when everything else was sounding so much like the 80’s. I went to my local record store and bought the single the very next day.
I don’t know what is is with the music beds on these tracks, but I’m in love with them. Contemporary music, digital music, is usually so heavily processed and compressed, that there’s a complete lack of depth and sense of space. Manic is an atmospheric wonderland.
“Clementine” begins with ghostly acoustic piano and other-worldly, knocking percussion. “Dominic’s Interlude” echoes like a vintage Dusty Springfield recording. Halsey’s voice serves as a splendid guide through these places, although I’d enjoy it more without the current trend of trying to jam an “I” into the last word of each vocal line. She would sound just fine without it.