#It's all my fault ...
Joined Pete's GDFAF posse last night to see New York popular beat-combos Schwervon! and Jeffrey Lewis. They were both jolly good and loud and agitated.
Rather meanly, I ribbed Pete about which bands he'd compared other bands to in his reviews thus far. During the gig I even borrowed Pete's pen to write down the bands I thought he might touch on for this gig's review, but didn't tell let him see. I reckon if I can get one reference for each band, then I win. Got up nice and early to read his review, to find he's declared himself to be suffering writer's block. Arse!<later/>Pete's block has passed, which is good. Hope he was able to get some sleep in the meantime. I'm declaring a draw on the who-sounds-like-who thing. He didn't liken Jeffrey Lewis to anyone, which I think I knew in my heart would be the case, but did compare Nan Turner of Schwervon! to Kristen Hersh or Kim Deal. I have Throwing Muses and The Pixies on my piece of paper, so I reckon that's about equal. The comparison with Hersh is valid I think, but I'm not sure about Deal. I didn't put The Pixies on my list because of any easy-peasy female-vocalist-in-a-guitar-band reason, but because of, well, I don't know really, but that's how they struck me. An attitude, an approach, just something for a moment reminded me.
I have dinner to cook. Excuse me. [added 12th Nov 2005]
Pete Ashton said For Schweron! I have Throwing Muses, L7, The Pixies, Sonic Youth, Talking Heads, REM, Tom Petty, My Morning Jacket and Guided By Voices. Except I don't think I really mean Guided By Voices, I mean another band on the Buffy soundtrack CD, but I can't think which one. Death Cab for Cutie, maybe? Matt's voice has a definite "young Micheal Stipe" sound, especially when singing unaccompanied. For a moment, in a couple of songs, if their ghost bass player had been made physical and started spanking out dirty, thumping bass riffs, they could have doubled for a fresh-faced Talking Heads.
Should add that I couldn't think of anyone to compare Schwervon to during the gig and it was only at about 5am, after listening to mp3 exercpts, that I went for the Hersh/Deal combo. But these comparisons are merely broad strokes to give the reader a frame of reference, not definitive or anything.
Be interested to know who else was on the list. [added 12th Nov 2005]
For Jeffrey Lewis and chums I have The B52s, John Denver, Fleetwood Mac, Big Black, Sonic Youth (again), The Monkees and Neil Young, although they didn't necessarily occur to me in that order. [added 12th Nov 2005]
None of that, by the way, should be taken as a review substitute, or as dismissive, or they were a knock off of, or stole riffs from, or anything other than for a brief moment, they reminded me of whomever. [added 12th Nov 2005]
Marv said You didn't get one reference per band, so you lost ;) [added 13th Nov 2005]Like I said, I did get two on one. Kristen Hersh sings with Throwing Muses and Kim Deal is The Pixies bassist. [added 14th Nov 2005]
anonymous said You lost, you lost...sorry can't resist [added 15th Nov 2005]
Pete Ashton said He does sound like Jeffrey Lewis, but comparing him to someone else isn't pointless at all. There are two reason why you might compare one band to another (or one artist to another, or one writer to another or ...). The first to fix them in your own mind - "I like X because they sound like Y" or "I don't like A because they sound like B", or even "I don't like The Futureheads because they sound like XTC, but have none of XTC's playfulness". The other is to give someone else an idea of what they are like - "you might like X because you like Y", "imagine A crossed with B". We could rewrite
You were really on a hiding to nothing with Lewis. I know his stuff realy well so as far as I'm concerned he sounds like Jeffrey Lewis. The idea of comparing him to someone else is just kinda pointless. He sounds like Jeffrey Lewis.
It's like asking you who Bob Mould sounds like.
(and no, I haven't got a clue) [added 18th Nov 2005]
Jeffrey Lewis he has two modes, quiet solo songs of maudlin but good humoured self depreciation and loud full-on punk rock.
Jeffrey Lewis has a similar dry deliver to Lou Reed, but every now and then goes all Neil Young on his guitar.
While I doubted you would compare Lewis to anyone, there was a chance you might. Ascribing a genre to something is a similar shortcut. My chum Ken once enquired whether I liked "big, depressing science fiction" novels. He could equally well have asked if I like Arthur C. Clarke or Kim Stanley Robinson. In the past, you were happy to describe Lewis's music as "antifolk". When I asked you want the hell that was, you described something I summarised "so it's folk then". Following this gig, I'd describes, as a shorthand, both Schwervon and Lewis as "hardcore". Like Sonic Youth, Big Black, The Pixies and Bob Mould :)
[added 18th Nov 2005]