Jul 14, 2007

the TOUCH ME NOTS "It's Not Right But It's Okay" 7inch EP and the TOUCH ME NOTS/RED ROCKETS split 7inch EP

What the hell?!?!? Do Andrew and Kelly Touch Me Not have tunes stashed all over their home?!?! Are they stashed away in drawers? Held onto by a magnetic clip on their fridge? Lost in the recycling bin cuz they got mixed in with the newspaper? In the pocket of a jacket that's been on a hook the last few months cuz the warmest of year's weather set in??? And how is it that they have released over 20 songs to the record buying public within the last year and have a better batting average than Tony Gwynn pulled off in his best season. Granted, there were some covers peppered through the song list so far...but even their choices of those makes one wonder "How do they always pick out such charmers?"
Take the Nasty Product single for example. Two songs originally done by someone else and one credited to Andrew. Side one's "It's Not Right But It's Okay" has 5 names listed in the credits. I knew I had heard the song somewhere before but couldn't figure out where (working many a job somehow musically related over the past 100 years or so though this is not uncommon for me) At first I was thinking maybe it was some R-n-B song from a few decades back cuz if ya ever read or watched any history of Rock-n-Roll stories ya know how there was always some guy tacking their name on the song to get a piece of the royalty pie. Obviously whatever the original version sounded like it's been stripped to practical nakedness with just tumultuous drumbeats-n-impetuous guitars both there to make a point in some kinda roundabout junk food waltzbeat. Adam's voice blaring out words of getting busted for deceiving. The more I listened to the song mentions of credit card receipts and caller ID got me realizing that's the song's got to be of a more recent vintage. The better half walks through the room and see's the look of lostness of my face. "You looked too puzzled again, dearest"
"Who the hell did this song?"
She perks her ear towards the speakers waiting til the chorus comes around. "For a hint...Hmmm, think about an out of tune jewelry box music."
"You had stories about middle aged black ladies saying she lost it when that song came out and they were all blaming her husband. It sold okay in Europe though. I think she did the song on the MTV awards too." We've been together for eons. Every year or so there's a new twist on that same story. There's always some R-n-B (well, R-n-B as they consider it now. Not Rhythm-n-Blues music as what people should mean when they say R-n-B) singer that's crackin up..and their buying public not biting they ain't putting out the right thing. Hmmm...Husband?
"Tina hasn't been with Ike in ages darlin'..."
"No. Not Tina Turner."
We volley back and forth for about 15 minutes and I'm still stumped. She's just fed up at this point. "BOBBY BROWN! 1999! Compute it old man!" Yeah, It's her last card and she's ready to fold 'em.
At first I was gonna throw out a joke about the chick that was in Warrant's "Cherry Pie" video but I could tell she was done at playing the game. "What? Whitney? No way! I've never heard that song."
She tries to convince that I probably had a 100 times but never acknowledged it. Sure enough though-She was right. I still don't recall it but I mastered the art of blocking out music I don't wanna hear quite a long time ago now so maybe that's why I don't. I guess it was a big club hit in Europe though...but what isn't? Okay, I guess it's time to admit at once time I thought it would be funny to cover "I Wanna Dance With Somebody" but given the time frame I thought of the idea though nowadays it would be even a smaller footnote than say, some tune Seaweed or Lucy's Fur Coat contributed to a compilation/tribute CD a decade and a half or so (did Seaweed or Lucy's Fur Coat ever contribute some kinda song to the rash of such releases at the time? Fuck if I know for sure. Lots of bands from that era did...and when's the last time either of those band has came up in conversation) or these newish kiddie emo pop bands that think it's all wacky and/or ironic to cover a song by Britney Spears, Backstreet Boys and so on. Ugg! No thanks, dude. The thing is though that the framework the Touch Me Nots operate in-such things don't sound corny...they end up sounding like loud and raw rock-n-roll songs. Someone should send a copy of this version to Whitney just to see what effects it would have on her cracked addled head. Maybe it would cause it to blow up. Hell! I should do it and make sure I take a camera and have of the supermarket get into a bidding war over exclusive rights to the pics. I could sure use the cash. Speaking of which-the flipside kicks out with "Bag Of Money" (how's that for a segue), the TMN's original for this little bisquit, a good little rocker about something we can all use. A take on Francoise Hardy's "Only Friends" (aka 'Ton Meilleur Ami' ) caps the record off done a way only the Touch Me Nots can pull off and get away with it.
On the split single they treat us to two of those tunes I was speculating that they have stashed all over their digs. "Life Of Crime" is one of their best one's yet. If you can't dance to it or at least want to join in singing "WOO!" the way Kelly does behind Andrew's belting I don't know if there's any help for ya. "This Kind Of Music" ain't far behind it either.
The Red Rockets have a bit of an Oblivians meet KBD thing going on. Sort of in the manner of the Strong Come Ons but not as much in a way where it sounded like the SCO's could tear your head off but ya can't knock 'em for trying. After all they're from Utah...What the hell else has Utah given the world of music but the Osmonds (and don't say "What about 'Crazy Horses' dude?" Yeah...that song is funny for the novelty aspect but that's it. One of these day all that irony is gonna kill the cat) and the Used? Red Rockets get an B+ for effort but I'll have to wait to hear what else they do down the road before I give an overall solid grade.

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