Oh *beep* yeah, wooooo!! The history books will forever say I won the first ever MERMICORN CARD! I'm tearing up! This will come in mighty handy.
Cherry: Okay so I really know nothing about this band, other than Murr talking about them all the time. Like...some stuff Murr likes are really great, and some are questionable. Like, to be honest I am just assuming The Church will be questionable, but there is a small chance I will be wrong. He assured me when he picked the theme that these guys just STARTED in the 80's and they are still currently making music...but of course all of you picked their 80's songs. Thanks, guys. It's not like I talk about how gross 80's music is all the time or anything like that. Sigh. This started, and like...it legit sounds like every generic 80's British band. Except apparently these guys are Australian instead. Whatever. Like obviously this is not the worst song I have ever heard in my life, but it is not something I particularly enjoy, and I am annoyed that I have to listen to it. THANKS GUYS.
Murr: So, to start, I listed the songs in chronological order... largely to make a point. This is a band that's been consistently making music for 36 years, and only 3 people chose songs that weren't from the '80s... and most of you know that Cherry hates '80s music. I assumed that was implied in the theme... I even gave you guys a link to see they've been making music constantly since 1980... including well past the '80s. The Church had some huge pinnacles in the '80s, but their output in the '90s and '00s has been consistently better - more detailed musically, and around the late '80s, Kilbey really hit his stride as a lyricist. My heart sank a bit when I saw all the early/mid '80s songs coming in. Also, since I love The Church, I will be judging more harshly than usual, to make sure my scores actually count. Anyway, as for "The Unguarded Moment"... it was their first big hit (I think they released "She Never Said" in 1980, but with minimal impact). While it's not a favorite, it's definitely a solid song. Your back-ups - particularly "Myrrh" and "Tear It All Away" are 2 of my favorite pre-Starfish Church songs, so I wish you had picked either of those as your first choice. Still, this is definitely a solid song and shows their post-punk roots really well. "So long - long between mirages / I knew you'd find me drinking..." Well said, Mr. Kilbey! My complaints aside, there are very VERY few Church songs I hate, so I'm loving this round. Just wish you guys would've went for their '90s, '00s, and '10s material to help me sway Cherry.
Cherry: The title sounds like a nostalgic Valentine's Day card. Speaking of Valentine's day, legit the day after Christmas we set up a Godiva Valentine's display at work lolz. The boxes are really pretty though, can't wait til they go on 50% clearance in a month and a half if there's any left <3 Anyway, you know what is even worse than 80's songs? 80'S SONGS WITH SUPER LONG MUSIC INTROS, ESPECIALLY WHEN THE VIDEO HAS CHEERING FANS IN THE BACKGROUND. You know, some days I imagine inviting Murr with me when I inevitably move to Iceland to start a new life. But then I hear songs like this and realize this is the stuff he will play all the time, and I think about abandoning him in a fjord. That's true friendship, guys. Next time Murr insults the lyrical content of any song, ever, I'm just going to type WHEN YOU WERE MINE, WHEN YOU WERE MINE, WHEN YOU WERE MINE over and over until he shuts up, because it's not like lyricism is the strong suit of this song.
Murr: So, this is one of the few Church songs I'm really not crazy about. Overall, I really like The Blurred Crusade. It's when their sound, that would stick for years to come, first really started forming. But "When You Were Mine" is such a throwback to the first album. Like, they wanted a hit with a familiar sound, and this is what they came up with. But it really does just sound like post-punk by-the-numbers. I still like it, mind. Ordinarily, I'd give this a better score. But in an all-Church round, it's not like I'm comparing it to some Father John Misty crap. heh.
Cherry: So I saw the song title and thought about flying, obviously, and then I thought about how brilliant it would be to write a song about a fly, and like, people would see the title and think "oh another song about flying, cool" but then they'd listen to it and be like...wtf is this about a fly? NO CLICHES HERE, KIDS. Anyway, despite this not exactly being innovative, this is definitely the best song so far. The music fits the flying theme nicely, too, kind of has a floating into space sound.
Murr: I'd say Seance was their first great album. It was also Kilbey's first conscious attempt to write a hit, and failed miserably. Also, interesting factoid: the person on the cover, all colored pink with silent film star lipstick, is actually Steve Kilbey himself... I think this was still the era that he wanted to be the '80s Marc Bolan/David Bowie, mind. Makes me admire him even more. Anyway, this song is beautiful, and it might just be their first *haunting* song, a style he took to the extreme later. It's usually a little overshadowed because it's followed by one of my all-time favorite Church songs, "One Day", so it's interesting to listen to it on its own. Really, this song is more an introduction to the album than stand-alone song, or at least that's how it was intended. But for that, it's a great song. You can kind of picture this character opening her eyes, pointing up into the sky, preparing for this Odyssean seance to come. "Baby left as she lost her breath / hastens off to some unknown death / trapped inside her painted eyes / takes herself into a new sunrise..." That, especially followed by the force that is "One Day", is just incredible to me.
Cherry: I like the title of this one. I'm so cold, omg. Like I am all dressed for work so I don't want to go grab an extra sweatshirt or something, but it is freezing in my house. WISH I COULD JUST LAY IN MY MERMAID BLANKET ALL DAY. I am rambling as opposed to talking about this song, because it's not that good. The lyrics are alright, but the music is just more of that generic alt-Brit done Aussie styled stuff.
Murr: Ha! I actually love this song. You can see the remnants of Steve's glam era sort of fading away in the video (just a bit of eyeliner), which has always amused me. Also from Seance, though by far the poppiest song on Seance, for better or worse. Definitely a jangly '60s type sound here. As cheesy as this can be, it's kind of a beautiful love song. "Electric lash of trees in the studio - a bite, and then caress / Only the voice of the girl on the radio, drifting from the rest / I turn to leave as if in a cameo: a room, a knot, a 'yes' / Only one thing you ever really know: if it's day or night"... Definitely not their most exciting or innovative song, but as a '60s by way of '80s styled pop song, this is lovely
Cherry: There is no explanation for why you all picked crappy 80's songs. Does this band have better songs? Murr will claim yes, but I mean, none of them have exactly been good so far. There are a few good lines in this one: "Dream tongued man from the golden land, Standing with the keys to your door, I had to laugh as I shook his hand, Didn't know he'd been here before" I admit I like that. So I guess lyrically this one is pretty good, but musically, still not a fan.
Murr: The Persia EP wasn't one of their high points, except maybe "Shadow Cabinet" which is incredible. It's a nice song - very endearing as a jangle-pop break-up song. But that's not really when Kilbey was at his best, lyrically... thankfully he realized that shortly after this and stopped writing songs like this. "You pull the sheets around your throat, talking like a harpy again..." and "Dreamtongued man from the golden land, standing with the keys to your door / I had to laugh as I shook his hand / Didn't know he'd been here before" are pretty great lines for what they are. It's a good song, again - it would get a higher score if this weren't the theme - but I'm definitely glad he stopped writing songs like this.
This is the last one I listen to before I finish getting ready for work. Stupid closing shift. The song starts, and I am pretty sure he is singing 80'S 80'S 80'S 80'S MUSIC 80'S MUSIC 80'S MUSIC. And I am like no, thank you. I don't blame any of you, and I don't blame myself. We all know who to blame here.
Murr: I have no clue why everyone wanted to send this. Don't get me wrong, it's definitely a good pick. But... Heyday was the first album they started adopting a more layered, atmospheric sound, largely inspired by Scott Walker (even worked with his producer). But this song comes after "Myrrh", "Tristesse", and "Already Yesterday" (one of my favorite Church songs of all time), all powerhouses. Then it kind of sinks a bit with this song. Still a great song, but nowhere near the first 3, and nowhere near "Tantalized"/"Disenchanted" when the album picks up again. Speaking of "Tantalized", I'm kinda bummed no one picked any of the angrier/more aggressive Church songs. The chorus to this used to make me kind of uncomfortable... but then one day I listened to it and realized the cheekiness, that he's not actually speaking in his own voice. The song is more or less portraying this kind of insecurity in the lowly plebes, sort of in line with "Myrrh" or "Tristesse". Don't know why it took me so long to get that... maybe just because the line is so raw... "you don't supposed there'd be room in here somewhere for me? I think I just need someone's words to reassure me". In context of the song, it works beautifully... it just sound so uncomfortable on its own. But for that, I actually like it a lot now. Funny enough, just a couple months ago I went through a phase of being addicted to this song. Still a weird choice, but I love it, anyway. Overall, great pick.
Cherry: I have high hopes for this song going into it, so if it isn't at least decent, I'm gonna be disappointed. Murr and David were just talking about this song on the thread, so I don't know if you picked it because of that, or if it's a coincidence. OR, THIS IS DAVID, AND YOU ARE TOO LAZY TO GET A NEW SONG . Oh wow, this one is actually legit good. I'm kind of impressed. It doesn't even sound 80's! It has a 90's sound, haha so I guess, ahead of the time? The lyrics are nice, kind of dreamy. Congrats on your mermicorn card.
Murr: Their one true bonafide hit! Funny enough, this wasn't the first Church song I ever heard. That title belongs to "Destination", also from Stafish - the song right before this, which is a masterpiece. But really, this entire album is a masterpiece. This is the moment where his lyrics started to get way more cryptic and involved, where he started going with this symbolist-like approach to writing lyrics... songs that really mean nothing, but create a feeling perfectly. "And it's something quite peculiar / Something that's shimmering and white / It leads you here, despite your destination..." Indeed it does. Such a subtle but great arrangement... 2 guitars, same chord in different shapes, playing the rhythm... then you have Peter's weird wah'd/E-bowed chaos, making it just lovely.
Cherry: Aw, they are trying to teach me the directions! It's like, if you're lost in the woods or something, just listen to this song. Or I guess lost in the ocean, cuz you know, mermicorns. Um...I like how his voice sounds, but not really feeling the music. It's too like, I don't know. Guys, it's so cold and windy outside I had to wait 20 minutes for the bus, and then a 15 minute walk home. CAN'T WAIT TO GO TO BED AND CUDDLE UP IN MY MERMAID BLANKET. THAT'S RIGHT, I HAVE A MERMAID TAIL BLANKET! I'm going to get Murr a unicorn horn, and then like, put us together and we can REVIVE MERMICORNS. Ugh why is this song still going. Omg, he is listing the directions now! He kind of said west in a sexy way.
Murr: lolz @ your uncertainty over this. It's a great song. It was written about Los Angeles in the '80s, but it seems oddly apt for most every major US city today. Kind of reminds me of modern day San Francisco, sadly. "Dream up a scam and then rake in the clams..." I guess, actually, he does kinda throw down in this song. "The face of today is just a scalpel away - hey / Restore your lost soul for 2 dollars plus toll". I always like it when Steve gets grumpy. But honestly... Like, this entire album has this vague sense of "destination", or searching for a destination (a mythical land in "A New Season", eating humble pie and having it taste of the road in "Antenna", wandering under prehistoric skies and following some girl to talk to some god who never speaks to you (because you're never listening) in "Lost", etc... This may be the more aggro form of that, disillusioned with his current destination in particular, but it's pretty damn powerful. "Backs are patted when calves are fatted (in this city) / The emperor's clothes are the best for the proles (liquidity) / The guys with the brains are all bitter and vain (stupidity) / The guys with the luck get the bimbos and bucks (liquidity)". Brilliant
Cherry: Reptiles are kinda cool. I went out with a guy who had a snake once. It was fun, the snake wrapped around my arm. Anyway, he's singing about this girl slithering away and stuff, I imagine the song is about a forbidden Gryffindor/Slytherin romance. You GET that snake girl, Mark! Whisper some sweet Parseltongue love songs in her ear. Oh, fakeout. I thought the song was ending, but then there are 2 more minutes. Anyway, nothing a pattern here, either Starfish is their best album, or this band gets better as the years go on.
Murr: Something about this particular recording sounds like it's clipping, and kind of overcompressed. It doesn't sound like this on the album... must be something done to it for this here video. Another great song. Again, Starfish is a masterpiece. That delayed guitar part by Marty, those slow wailing sounds by Peter... The song sounds like it's coiling and lashing out, which is kinda brilliant. "And I should've believed Eve when she said we had to blow / She was the apple of my eye, it wasn't long ago" Get it? GET IT? "I see you slither away with your skin and your tail / You flicker tongue and you rattle your scales..." Not my favorite song from the album, but it's an album with absolutely no weak songs.
Cherry: Hotel Womb is a gross song title. Dammit though, aside from the gross title, this song has some great lyrics. "I paid 80 dollars for this wedding ring, I couldn't take it off if I tried. And the cactus sure tastes strangely sweet as it goes down the inside" and "Morning comes at last, and she's lying by my side. She's got the face of the widow that keeps following me, and the body of my bride" I don't really care that much for the music on this one, wtf guitar solo, but the lyrics are fantastic. Like, can there be an acoustic cover of this song, plz?
Murr: This is probably my favorite song ever. Maybe tied with Van Morrison's "Sweet Thing"... sometimes, maybe even above it. There has never been a time I've listened to this song passively. Every time I hear it, it gets my full attention. I'm guessing you knew that, since I put it on my playlist for your game and someone sent it. I think I ranted the most epic rant ever for that comment, I'll try to semi-abbreviate it here, but... This is legit the perfect song. Musically, it kind of just rises from this formless, primordial mess, and then it takes off, in all its Rickenbacker through Vox glory. Lyrically, it's like absolutely nothing else. This surrealist journey through, like, thought and fantasy and longing. "Sudden voltage in the night with a rainforest girl / As we float downstream to the Amazon river, where the black waters swirl / I say, 'why are you people all wearing those masks?' I say, 'can we be reconciled?' She says, 'the mother of the storm has to roam the sky, searching for her child'. There's this live performance - solo, acoustic - where he doesn't play the solo, but just explains it's this guy waking up in a hotel room, everything rushing through him, the imminent feeling something is just around the corner, then... "Morning comes at last, and she's lying by my side / She's got the face of the widow that keeps following me, and the body of my bride". And I think that's it... the song doesn't necessarily mean anything, but it has this sense of isolation ("I dream I'm safe in my hotel womb") and sort of a collapse, but this almost divine longing for everything that's been and everything that could be. Where everything is just this sense of possibility, and that's fcking beautiful. It's a love song, but not... doesn't seem to be about anyone, or any particular relationship sentiment, and can apply to any relationship (with a person, or an idea, or a dog, or whatever). More this feeling of the veil opening and being part of it. I can't explain what I mean, and I've ranted a lot. Anyway, THIS song is why I've been scoring pretty hard. Because nothing else lives up to this.
Cherry: Amg, 90's songs, finally! So I guess this is a song dedicated to his mistress, that's hot. Hmm, this song is kind of reminding me of another song or band, but I can't think of what. I like that this is slower, with kind of softer music. It's more my speed than the 80's guitar stuff, although it kind of borderlines that cheesy 90's ADULT ALTERNATIVE.
Murr: ... however, this comes close. Priest=Aura might just be their best album, and I'm really sad that only 1 person sent a song from it. It's at least on par with Starfish. So, the album was basically written to reflect his experiences with heroin... Not in a moralistic way, but to literally represent how he felt while on it. Some of the lyrics on this album get pretty intense, and some are just these beautiful, if slightly creepy, depictions of, like, swamps where mandrake grows and Nebuchadnezzar's parking zone. And then you have songs like "Feel" that are just this sense of oneness, or some divine connection with some stranger... whatever. Anyway, this song is beautiful, and slightly disturbing. Heroin is the one with the halo... heroin is the mistress here. To this languid 6/8 groove with random piano flourishes, then it just explodes in the chorus. "Everything is going wrong - all my songs are coming true / And another thing! That halo you wear on your head, I haven't seen one of those for years..." His voice was also probably at its all time best on this album, too. I know no one will disagree with me, but this is one of the best vocal performances of all time. Raspy, cracking, but so smooth. It's such a beautiful, lulling song, but with this slightly uneasy, dream-like feeling. Which I guess is what they were going for. Love this so much. Screw it, another perfect score.
Cherry: So now I bet Youtube is going to get confused and think this is my favorite band and start recommending them to me nonstop, t.ears. This song is like, I don't know. Honestly, I'm getting kind of tired of these guys. It's alright, not one of my favorites, but also, not terrible like most of the early songs.
Murr: Lolz. I gather you didn't enjoy your experience finding this song but, by whatever process, you picked a great one. This is another one of my favorites. "I tried my best but I transgressed... it used to be fne / The chances are used up, the finances used up / The energy is low... I suppose you'd say she made a slave of me / Oh, but she has authority". <3 I'm guessing they were trying to repeat the glory of Hotel Womb for this solo, too. Musically, this is edging on wall-of-sound, where most of it is barely distinguishable... most of the arrangement is actually just feedback and ebows creating this orchestrated, glorious mess. "I guess that that's all / The curtain comes down, the circus leaves town, leaves begin to fall / I guess that that's it / THE WORLD KEEPS SPINNING, PEOPLE KEEP SINNING; ALL THE REST IS JUST BULLSHT!" One of the best lines ever. "You sleep like a baby, precious as a ruby; goodbye everything". This is lightyears beyond their earlier music. Sorry, people who sent their earlier music!
Cherry: Last one, finally. Weird song title, you don't normally see Japanese cities and French pet names in the same title! Omg, it says Box of Birds. Is that the album title? YOU CAN'T PUT BIRDS IN A BOX! I don't really have any thoughts on this song. It's like, whatever. I ran out of good comments, sorry. The music is kind of repetitive
Murr: OK, so... this is an Ultravox song. The Church's version, from A Box of Birds, which was a cover album. Funny enough, it also has a cover of "All the Young Dudes"... I think you sent Mott the Hooples' once? idr. I'll keep this one short. Nice cover of a good song, but it really sounds like they threw this together. You probably just scanned a list of songs and picked something with French words.
Say the double song card is played at the same time as I play my song steal card.
French New Wave... that horrible period in cinema.