Thursday, July 17, 2008

OK Blunstone June 14, 2008

Today I was buzzing through the internet looking up something about the song "This Will Be Our Year" by The Zombies, when I found that the band OK Go did a cover of it (of course it's on my playlist now).

I was late to the party when it came to OK Go, but when I arrived, hot damn it rocked! I think I first saw Damian Kulash on The Daily Show of all places, and believe me, if I have a type, he is so it. He's the lead singer/guitarist for OK Go and even though I found him highly lickable, I wasn't about that song with the treadmills. That was all I had seen at the time and I didn't pursue it further until one of my best buds, Bonnie, schooled me on their finer points.

Sweet chocolate Christ, I can't believe it's been 3 years since "Oh No" was released. It's OK Go's second album and I would marry it if I could (please don't tell Pat Robertson as I'm sure there's something in the Bible that claims this act is cause for one sort of damnation or another and we don't want to open that can of blue suits now do we?). This album is just that - an ALBUM. Most efforts out there nowadays are a collection of songs, but this is a work in totality. The songs that are not portrayed in treadmill videos show the smokier side of Kulash's vocals, and the warmth in some of the recordings…you can almost smell the wood in the studio (not that kind of wood, geeze).

Upon first listening of "A Million Ways", I definitely felt a Franz Ferdinand vibe and thanks to Google, I knew why in a matter of seconds. Tore Johannson of Sweden produced "Oh No" and FF's self titled debut. You're a big fucking deal if your production leaves that much of a mark, so Tore is now in my mental producer rolodex hanging with the likes of John Leckie, Alan Moulder (heavy hitters in the 90's), and of course George Martin, aka the 5th Beatle.

I could definitely tell that OK Go was heavily influenced by The Zombies, who are one of my all time favorite bands. I would even go so far as to say that Colin Blunstone possesses the most beautiful voice that ever slipped across my ears. All of their recordings were done before I was sent down to this planet (or up, I really can't remember), but to me, "Odessey and the Oracle" is one of the best pieces ever made. And, yes, "Odessey" is spelled like that on the jacket. It was a 1967 misprint, but they ran with it.

There isn't enough digital space for all the great things I have to say about The Zombies and that album, but they did reunite for a US tour this July, and if you're lucky enough to be near one of the venues DO NOT miss it. I've seen Blunstone on his own, and my mouth was on the floor during the entire performance, I can't even imagine…well if you get good tickets, let me know. If Southwest flies to that area, I'm there. Same goes if you get good Radiohead tickets too! My neighbor works for Southwest. I watch his cats when he travels, he gives me tickets =)

Ok, so Kulash isn't quite Colin Blunstone, but close enough. On "Lately, It's so Quiet" the swoon meter busts out on top. That silky voice with those slightly dirty chords completely does it for me.

"Maybe, This Time" is probably my favorite. I can hear a Les Paul in there, and the simplicity and spacing of each part is nothing short of captivating. It reminds me of some 80's song that I can't quite recall, but someday when I'm overmedicated and bitching about social security (or the lack thereof), I'm sure it will come to me. Probably won't be able to hear by then, yeesh. (If you know me at that point, please help me load the gun.)

I've never seen OK Go live, but that's definitely on my "to do" list for this lifetime. You should see the list for my next life. =]

Currently listening :
Oh No
By OK Go
Release date: 2005-08-30

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