Day 147: The B-52’s – The B-52’s

25 Jul

Rock Lobster

I love it when people suggest weird music for me.  Honestly, that’s what keeps me going.  So if you know of any off-kilter artists or bands, then by all means, hit me up.

The B-52’s make some weird music.  You know that song called Rock Lobster? The one about a lobster that rocks? Of course you do.  Well that’s on this record.

The strange lyrics and twee-esque instrumentation isn’t unique to that track, though.  The band’s eponymous self-titled debut has a lot to like for fans of that songNo, not every tune is a clone of that infamous one, but they all have a similar kitsch-ness to them.

The B-52’s is definitely more lyric-based than anything.  Of what their lyrics are about, I remain uncertain.  The point is that it’s the words that take center stage on this record.  It’s the fact that I’m not entirely sure what the lyrics are about that makes them so good.  If I understood what was going on between the lines of Rock Lobster, I’m not sure it’d be as awesome.  Or maybe I’m reading too far into this, and it really is just about a musical crustacean…

Anyway, weird lyrics are what give this band its strange, unconventional, but charming sound.  It’s almost as if they’re a predecessor for all the weird indie bands that were to follow in The B-52’s footsteps.  Strange has become the standard in today’s indie scene, so it’s interesting to hear strange from when it was actually strange.

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4 Responses to “Day 147: The B-52’s – The B-52’s”

  1. Dave Chops July 25, 2011 at 8:24 pm #

    LOCK RO!

    If it is truly off-kilter that you seek, I can do no better than to suggest The Residents who have been doing off kilter for about 36 years while dressed as eyeballs. Like concept albums? Try their Commercial Album – 40 songs each exactly one minute long.

    • David Chops July 26, 2011 at 4:54 am #

      Further reflexion, more off-kilter:

      1. Kid Creole and the Coconuts: Tropical Gangsters (U.S. title Wise Guy) – Squirrel Nut Zippers go dancing in Spanish Harlem and make a concept album that has things in common with Mamma Mia.

      2. The Jazz Butcher: Cult of the Basement – Dry absurdist British humor meets upbeat, catchy arrangements. I really want to recommend the excellent 3 disc compilation Rebecca Wants Her Bike Back but I hear you are not a fan of the compilation. I just cannot see you not loving The Jazz Butcher.

  2. Yuanny Dollar July 26, 2011 at 4:10 am #

    Okay SE — now you have to listen to Iggy Pop’s duet with the B-52’s Kate Pierson — Candy. Maybe that will help you embrace Iggy. Maybe not. Iggy purists just think the song is a sell out.

    As for The Residents — Chops is right. Listen to them while reading the Incandenza filmography footnote in Infinite Jest and your head may spin.

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