I know you're gonna do that violin thing again... Song for Odin, let's go. And I wish you a very happy Hallowe'en e'en, I'm sure. It's a bit of a shame that I have no spooky or vaguely seasonal song to offer. We did "Andromeda Klein", which is kinda close, as a SfO last year (see notes below for link.) The flip side of that single, "Bethlehem" could also bear some minor secreting, but the rules for Song for Odin require a unique video resource and (as yet) I have none. It's not like I haven't written any such songs: in fact I have quite a lot of magick songs floating around, but none have ever seen the light of day. So, it's just an ordinary Wodnesdæg here at Song for Odin, and what we've got here is the MTX of 1997 doing a rough-hewn "Somebody Who Cares" at the Rivoli in Toronto. https://youtu.be/cuOPVjXLZIg The only thing I remember about this particular set was that I was deathly ill during it, and you can kind of tell. Still, that guitar sounds great and that's the important part, And the song, well, all self-deprecation aside, is pretty, or at least substantially, great as well. This is the lead-off track of the rather peculiar though belatedly much loved MTX album Our Bodies Our Selves. I'm sure we did play it as a Doctor / Aaron / Alex three-piece live in the handful of shows we did in that configuration, but no video of that line-up has ever crossed my radar. It was only occasionally in the set during the subsequent three-piece line-up. I remember thinking of it as an "oldie," like a blast from the past, even though it was, here, only four years old. Well a lot can happen in four years, even if it's mostly a whole lotta nothin'. And I was a different man in 1997 than I was in '93, that's for sure. The song was among those written, or at least begun, in Fall 1992, in that bare Oakland apartment that contained only a futon, a Marshall half-stack, and me seated on the floor against the wall despondently cradling that white '57 Les Paul Jr. once reputedly owned by Johnny Guitar Watson and trying to figure out if I had any more songs in me. (It proved to be a productive environment, yielding e.g. "Swallow Everything," "More than Toast," and other songs that people still know and listen to today, which ain't nothing.) Things I like about it: the loose but consistent play between the double entendre in the title, dependent on how you punctuate it (essentially it's "Somebody Who Cares" vs. "Somebody, Who Cares?") Plus the repeated "who cares" refrain that goes from losing one's puppy who cares, to needing some money (who cares?) Get it? It stops just short of heavy-handedness, which is great for a wry effect, and not that easy to pull off. (I've done it worse, anyway.) Plus the violin line, which still "paints a picture" that makes me smile just a bit. And the mock (or is it?) earnestness in the final verse, which puts all that who-cares-ing into a new context, if you think the narrator means it, which he may well not. Pretty good, I'd say, for a guy who didn't know what he was doing and was ready to hang it all up. Also the guitar solo is ace, though understated, except at the end where it just gets ridiculous all of a sudden. Things I don't like: the bridge is lazy, and more could have been done with it. And the recording, in which the drums are way too aggressive sonically and basically overpower the song. Even the memory of that snare hurts my ears. It doesn't "gel" as a rock and roll song like it should, because the drums are a separate entity, while the song itself filters in and settles tentatively around them as though it has come from another building, if not indeed another planet. A remix would sure be great for any OBOS re-issue, especially as it's the lead-off track and all. It could sound so much better! However, the tape archive and documentation for this album is patchy. There are two 1 inch 16 track reels extant dated 12/92 and 6/93. The first is labelled "reel 2", and includes the songs "More than Toast," "Together Tonight," "Don't Go Away Go Go Girl," and "Swallow Everything." The other has no documentation beyond the date. Maybe it contains "Somebody Who Cares" (and when the time comes I do intend to find out) but quite possibly it does not. Four songs max per reel is just about right here, meaning that, basically, at least half this album is missing, and a comprehensive remix is logically impossible. This breaks my heart like the nothing ever has in my sorry little life. Also missing by the way: 100% of the analog mixes. The mix only survives in compressed, processed, already-mastered form in the 1630 digital tape cartridge format, which isn't ideal for remastering, though obviously better than nothing. A whole lot would have to happen for an acceptable re-issue of this album, even as is, to be feasible. But, as always, we will jump off that bridge when we get there. Finally, I've told this anecdote before, somewhere, but here it is again: Quite often people will leave lyrics behind in studios, and it is a sort of ritual to check them out, read them aloud, sing them to a tune, especially if they are really funny or really terrible. (Which they almost always are.) This led to my leaving fake awful lyrics behind sometimes, just as a kind of prank and also to brighten up the day of the next band coming in. One of the ones I remember was called "Don't Play Yahtzee with My Heart," a title I liked so much I used it in King Dork years later. Anyway, in keeping with this tradition, during one of the OBOS sessions at Dancing Dog, someone found a lyric sheet and started passing it around. Kevin Army recited it aloud in a kind of mock-solemn tone in a spirit of ridicule and everybody laughed. The line he read was "I wonder if there's any hope left in this world or if anybody cares for anything anymore. That's what I'm so frustrated for." I didn't say anything at all, but when I got up to do that vocal and sang that line -- from the song "Somebody Who Cares" -- well, it was pretty funny. Boy, that was a lot of words. If you made it all the way through, my thanks. And even if not, from all of us here at Song for Odin™, once again, a very Happy Hallowe'en E'en to you and we'll see you next week I'm sure. notes: -- studio recording: https://youtu.be/7btoaMScmbI -- OBOS discogs: https://www.discogs.com/The-Mr-T-Experience-Our-Bodies-Our-Selves/master/50069 -- "Minor secrets" of Andromeda Klein: https://www.minds.com/newsfeed/899311500821835776 -- AK 7" discogs: https://www.discogs.com/Dr-Frank-Andromeda-Klein/master/625594 -- Songs for Odin playlist: https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PLommF46BbnATopffORs0YkspebJHka2o_ #music #video #punkrock #minds
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