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What is the worst name for a band you’ve ever heard? May 18, 2011

Filed under: Music Questions — NVMP @ 8:01 AM
What is the worst name for a band you’ve ever heard?
TNT
Hands down, the worst name for a band that I’ve ever heard is Anal Cunt.  I don’t mean to sound like Jimmy from South Park, but come on.  I have reasonable doubts that merchandise is flying off the shelves, as I cannot see people wearing a shirt that has the words ‘Anal’ and/or “Cunt” on it.  Other band names I’m not too fond of are The Devil Wears Prada and Panic! at the Disco.  And You Will Know Us By The Trail Of The Dead, yes that is the entire name of one band, is a great group but who are they kidding with that name?  Everyone knows it’s just too long.  There, I said it.
Hoverbee
I dislike the band name Lady Antebellum (not to mention the music).  At first I disliked it because it made me think of Lady Gaga.  How many Lady-somethings are there going to be?  Then I disliked it because I confused the Latin word acetabulum (the socket of the pelvis that the femur head fits into) with the Latin word antebellum (oops…my bad) which makes absolutely no sense.  Now I dislike it because upon further investigation; the name is a reference to a woman living in the pre-Civil War culture in the slave holding southern states.
Mark
Here are a few of the shittiest band names that I have ever seen, courtesy of Australia’s SOUNDWAVE REVOLUTION festival:  Altar Bridge, Versa Emerge, The Pretty Reckless, Dashboard Confessional, Hollywood Undead, Street Dogs, Reliant K, Face to Face, Attack Attack!, Framing Hanley, Watain, Destroy Rebuild Until God Shows (D.R.U.G.S), Steel Panther, Thursday, The Dangerous Summer, Set Your Goals, The Damned Things, In This Moment, White Chapel, Every Time I Die, The Acacia Strain, Story of the Year, Terrible Things, The Swellers, Young Guns, Four Year Strong, This Providence, We Are The Ocean, Make Do and Mend.  YUCK!
Orin Jones
Smart money’s on “Putrid Stench,” “Bile,” or “Cannibal Corpse” (popular 90’s death metal bands).  Wonder how much money I spent and how much I personally killed the planet sucking down and discarding batteries blasting this awful noise on my Walkman personal tape player?  Probably a fuckin’ lot.  I know this is not a question about the worst band—rather, just a name—however, my vote is still for “Lady Gaga,” because every time I hear it—just her name—my mind is besieged by that song…I don’t even know the name…GAH GAH GAGAHGAAHHH….quickly followed by ideations of too personal a nature to speak here.
Stigz
I can’t think of a band name that really ticks me off specifically, however, any band that has the word “experience” in it truly irks me.  It’s almost the lazy man’s way out, and simultaneously screams of egotism and pomposity.  Also, any band that makes up a word to call themselves really pisses me off.  There are a billion words in the English language, why can’t you use a word (or series of words) we all agree on?
Klone
I love this question.  So much of a musical group’s identity is tangled up in its name, as much as it is in their sound.  Having been in a number of musical groups and projects, coming up with the band name can be one of the best, most fun parts of the entire endeavor, but more often than not that fun is short-lived.  All it takes is for a couple of members to throw out their ideas only to have them shot-down, and slowly this process devolves into inner band turmoil.  So, keeping in mind that band names are arrived upon by committee in most cases, unless you’re name is Dave Mathews or Lady GaGa, let’s look at some that are so bad it’s amazing that a group of people actually agreed to them.  #1: Hoobastank – Yeah, I always think kick-ass music when I hear a word that combines tuba and a past-tense notice of stench.  #2: Butthole Surfers – Okay, these days this name probably isn’t so shocking, but in the late 90s this name conjured an image of someone on their couch fingering their bunghole looking for the perfect wave…really gives “Cinnamon and Sugary” a new twist.  #3 Vagina Panthers – you may not believe they’re a real band, but they are…and that’s all I know about them because why the hell would I listen to a band called “Vagina Panthers”?
Daniel-Edward
The worst band name I’ve heard is D.R.U.G.S. (Destroy Rebuild Until God Shows).  It sounds like some kind of weird progressive christian rock band, and the name makes me immediately hate them.
 

What Cover Song Do You Feel Is Better Than The Original? May 4, 2011

TNT
I would have to say “Crimson and Clover” covered by Joan Jett and The Blackhearts.  Originally by Tommy James and the Shondells, I feel that Jett’s version blows the original out of the water; the drums and guitar really make this cover work.  I’ve never been a fan of Donna Lewis’s “I Love You, Always Forever,” but when I heard the track covered by Jukebox the Ghost, my mind was changed.  This version doesn’t make me embarrassed to listen. 
 
Angela
Hands down, the first thing I thought of was “War Pigs” as covered by the Dresden Dolls, originally by Black Sabbath.  The drumming Brian does on that song makes me stare in awe every single time.  They are a two piece band and still do the song justice with a full sound and enough energy to make this one, kick-ass cover.  I generally hate covers, but this one is my absolute favorite.

Hoverbee
I can think of many cover songs that are far better than the originals.  In fact, I feel that’s the mark of a great cover.  In my opinion, it’s silly to cover a song that’s already awesome, although many bands do.  I really enjoy it when a band takes a song and makes it so much better than it was (which is usually not the case with covers).  Some examples are as follows: Nirvana‘s cover of Shocking Blue’s “Love Buzz,” Joan Jett and The Blackheart‘s cover of Arrow’s “I Love Rock ‘n Roll,” and The White Stripe‘s cover of Dusty Springfield’s “I Just Don’t Know What To Do With Myself.”

Mark
It’s hard to say, because I know of an amazing cover that’s right on the tip of my tongue, but of course when it comes time to write about it, I can’t remember the song or who covered it.  So for now, my pick is Gary Numan’s 1979 tune “Metal”, covered by his worthy successor to dark themes and electronics, Nine Inch Nails.  Numan’s original version was part The Pleasure Principle, an album set to a self-composed Sci-Fi story taking place in a gritty, violent and increasingly dangerous world over run by technology and paranoia.  What makes NIN’s cover so amazing is that it not only expanded upon the original musically, but that it actually sounds more like a song that defines the universe Numan intended to create than the original.  The NIN version is a journey into madness and paranoia, which gets exceedingly worse with every second clocked, as the clanging of metal increases with creepy out-of-tune guitars, repetitive grunts and droning dead air.  I would almost say that this version better illustrates Numan’s vision for his nightmarish dystopian future.

Stigz
I am on the fence, but I think it’s a tie between Jimi Hendrix‘s cover of Bob Dylan’s “All Along the Watchtower” and Refused‘s version of Prince’s “Let’s Go Crazy.”

Daniel-Edward
Even though the original song is great, No Doubt‘s cover of “It’s My Life” by Talk Talk is one of my favorite, and I would say better than the original.  I also like Kim Wilde‘s cover of “Keep Me Hanging On,” originally by The Supremes.
 

What Songs Would You Want To Be Played At Your Funeral? April 20, 2011

Filed under: Music Questions — NVMP @ 4:31 PM

What song would you like to be played at your funeral and why?

TNT
I could list a full soundtrack of songs to be played at my funeral, so I’ll narrow it down to just three.  First would be “Imagine” by John Lennon.  I can’t listen to this song without getting emotional or even crying, it is so powerful.  The second would be “Ruby Tuesday” by The Rolling Stones.  “Ruby Tuesday” is one of my all time favorite songs and I think the lyrics would suit my funeral: “Goodbye Ruby Tuesday, who could hang a name on you? When you change with every new day, still I’m gonna miss you.”  The last song would be tribute to my mom, who also wants “Free Bird” by Lynyrd Skynyrd to be played at her funeral.  “If I leave here tomorrow, would you still remember me? For I must be traveling on now, ’cause there’s too many places I’ve got to see” and “‘Cause I’m as free as a bird now, and this bird you can not change” make for a meaningful and spiritual departure from this earth.  Props to mama dukes who raised her twins on southern rock and metal.  ❤

Angela

I never really thought about what music I would have played at my funeral.  I can tell you that my mother has told me explicitly to play, “Spirit in the Sky” by Norman Greenbaum at her funeral.  All I really want is a mix of music that when played, makes people recall fond memories of me.  I imagine a nice mixture of Green Day, Silverchair, and Queen.  For any of my ex’s these may include songs like Finger 11’s “Paralyzer,” Silverchair’s “Love Your Life,” “Magic” by B.O.B. ft. Rivers Cuomo,  One Republic’s “Apologize” or even Evanescence’s “Sober,”  to name a few.

Mark

I don’t care to think of such a thing, but if I really had to pick I would like to start with Beethoven’s “Moonlight Sonata (1st Movement: Adagio Sostenuto)”.  Although it does present the immediate air of gloom and sadness, which would reflect the mood of the situation, it would be present more for the fact that it is one of my favorite songs and not to help make visitors increasingly more sad.  It would lead perfectly into some of my favorite Philip Glass compositions, specifically “Etude #1,” again for the fact that I love the song, and not to reflect the mood.  From there, it would morph into an 80’s and electro dance party, because the day should be about remembering the good times and to remind loved ones that memories are the key to immortality, especially the happy ones, which can be best illustrated by your favorite songs.

Stigz
Considering most lives are much more dynamic than a single song can reflect, I have more than one.  One would be “Voodoo Child” by Jimi Hendrix, while the other would be “Music Is The Answer” by Celeda.  Hands Down.

Hoverbee

I would like “The Time Has Come Today” by The Chambers Brothers to be played at my funeral (the long version).  I’ve always loved the energy and lyrics of this song.  It’s one of those songs that makes me feel really good every time I hear it, although near the end it gets a little creepy.  That creepiness is perfect for the occasion symbolizing the fear of death and the unknown.  The cowbell simulating the ticking of the clock with the band chanting “TIME!” emphasizes the undeniable truth that we only have so much time and it eventually runs out.

Daniel Edward
As I was searching through my music to try to find an appropriate funeral song, I kept coming back to one: “Heroes” by David Bowie.  It’s hard to imagine what your funeral will be like, and I put many soundtracks to my own funeral while answering this question (“Dance in My Blood” by Men Women & Children, Fiona Apple’s cover of “Across The Universe”, “Gimme Sympathy” by Metric), but something stood out about “Heroes.”

Klone
What song would you like to be I remember a long time ago, maybe even in a previous life, I remarked to a friend that I was thinking about what my funeral would be like.  The response was a strange one, as my friend looked at me like I had three heads or something, and moments later told me I was too morbid.  Morbid or not, I’m a fan of preparation and planning, and for literally the last social event centered around me in this existence, I want that party to seriously rock…within reason, this is after all a funeral.  There’s always been one definite, must-be-played track for my funeral and that is the Guns N’ Roses cover of “Knockin’ on Heaven’s Door.”  The guitar work on this track is amazing, and definitely helps to solidly define Slash’s Guitar Hero status, while at the same time helping to fill out this rendition of the Bob Dylan classic.  It feels full, it feels complete and I can only hope that I feel the same way when I take stock of my life in my final moments.  Some additional tracks for the funeral: “Free Fallin'” by Tom Petty, “Send the Pain Below” by Chevelle, “Bug Eyes” by Dredge and “Don’t You (Forget About Me)” covered by Life of Agony.
 

Men at Work Lose Song Plagiarism Appeal April 12, 2011

Thoughts by TNT

Men at Work may come from a land down under, but after a recent court hearing, the band will have to pay royalties after the judge ruled their hit single from 1982 “Down Under” was partly copied from popular folk song “Kookaburra Sits In The Old Gum Tree” by Marion Sinclair.  It was a portion of the flute riff that mimics the classic tune.  Can you hear the similarities?

“Fact of the matter is that it went unrecognized for 27 years because it was unconscious, it was innocuous, naive” states Colin Hay

Now, as I can clearly hear the Kookaburra tune in the flute riff, I wouldn’t call this copyright infringement, especially since it went unrecognized for 27 years.  Marion Sinclair, a school teach from Australia, wrote this song in 1932 and it was copyrighted in 1934.  Ms. Sinclair passed away in 1988 and the rights to her song were renewed, or better yet, purchased by Larrikin Music in 1989 for $6,100.  The owners of the copyright saw an episode of ABC’s Spicks and Specks (an Australian music-themed comedic television quiz show) in 2007 and it prompted legal action against the band for the similarities.  Copyright laws state that the original composer gets life plus 70 years.  I’m sure none of this would have happened if Larrikin Music did not have the rights, and this is why I find the case to be unfair and unjust.  Men at Work was ordered to pay just 5% of royalties from the hit song dating back to 2002 and of course future royalties, which is better than the original asking of 40-60% of ALL royalties since the creation of “Down Under”.  Poor Colin Hay and Ron Strykert.  What do you think about this case?  Is this fair or unjust?

Anyone know what the song is about?  Apparently, “Down Under” paints the picture of an Australian backpacker touring the world, making references to chunder, Vegemite sandwiches and beer.  Wanna laugh?  Think about myself or anyone taking these dance moves to a club today (1 minute and 35 seconds into the video, second guy from the left).
 

If You Could Go To Any Music Festival In The World, Which One Would It Be? March 11, 2011

Filed under: Music Questions — NVMP @ 12:49 AM
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If you could go to any music festival in the WORLD, which one would it be and who would you see in 2011?

Tina
It’s a toss-up between Coachella and SXSW, but from looking at the rosters, I’d have to go with Coachella.  Not only do I love the idea of only being able to buy a 3 day pass (which I believe is reasonably priced), but that you have the option of camping out.   The bands I would check out at the festival this year would be Cee Lo Green, Flogging Molly, Interpol, The Aquabats!, Titus Andronicus, Broken Social Scene, Cage the Elephant, Freelance Whales, Mumford and Sons, The New Pornographers and The Strokes.  Unfortunately I am on the opposite coast and air-fare alone would kill my budget, but I vow to make it over there one year.  The same goes for SXSW.

Mark
If I could visit any music festival in the world, I would venture off to the UK to attend one of the world’s largest electronic music festivals, Creamfields.  A summertime home to some of the best DJ’s and electronic acts from all over the globe, it is the international equivalent of Woodstock, minus the hippies and lame protest songs.  Although the line-up hasn’t been announced, I would hope to see appearances from Paul Oakenfold, Sasha and Way Out West.

Klone
Just because I’ve seen so many excerpts of this festival from earlier years on digital cable (thank you, FiOs), I’d have to say this year’s Glastonbury Festival, the UK equivalent of Woodstock, would be the one I’d definitely make sure I got to.  This year’s line-up includes U2, Coldplay and Beyonce as headliners, as well as appearances by B.B. King, The Chemical Brothers, Mumford & Sons, Local Natives, Snoop Dogg, Gorilaz, Willie Nelson, Muse, Coheed & Cambria, MGMT, Orbital and many more.
The Awesome: the sheer size of the line-up and several stages are mind-boggling, offering a smorgasbord of musical offerings for any palate.  One would be hard-pressed to NOT find a lot to love during the course of the four-day festival.
The Not-So-Awesome: the sheer size of the line-up and several stages are mind-boggling, and means you’re going to have to meticulously track your day to catch every act you want to see.  Inevitably there will have to be sacrifices made, and they will be painful.  Plus, you’re going to be hot, sweaty, stinky, most likely sticky and ready to kill someone from dehydration at the exact moment you realize you took too long checking out George Clinton and the P. Funk All-stars and have already missed 20 minutes of Local Natives’ set, and realize you miss them EVERY TIME they come around to NYC.  Sometimes those are the risks that come with the territory, and that’s the price you have to pay.

Angela
When I had to figure out what one festival in the world I would love to attend, the first thing that came to mind was Rock In Rio.  Not only has this festival been able to bear the title of one of the largest festivals in the entire world, with attendance reaching into the millions, but I’ve always been a fan of the lineups. Silverchair is the main reason I ever even heard of this festival, but upon delving deeper, Rock in Rio consistently books amazing artists and can see the magnitude of a crowd all united for music.  How could I not want to be a part of that?  I remember seeing pictures of Silverchair on stage at Rock in Rio and seeing thousands upon thousands of faces all looking back at them.  It’s so diverse and appealing to so many people, I would love the opportunity to be a part of a show this amazing.

Hoverbee
While researching 2011 festivals all over the world to pick one I’d like to attend, I realized that many of them had not yet announced a lineup.  So in light of this, I’ll have to go with Coachella.  Since this is my fantasy, I’ll be in attendance on all three days and plan to see (regardless of stage/time restraints) The Black Keys, Raphael Saadiq, The Chemical Brothers, Ms. Lauryn Hill, Kings of Leon, Interpol, Cee Lo Green, Brandon Flowers, Animal Collective, Big Audio Dynamite, Cage the Elephant, Erykah Badu, Gogol Bordello, Mumford & Sons, Duran Duran, Neon Trees, PJ Harvey, The Strokes and check out bands I’ve never heard in between.

Daniel-Edward
If I could hit any music festival in 2011, it would be Bonnaroo.  I’ve never been to a massive, multi-day festival before, and Bonnaroo has such a broad swathe of musical genres and artists that it seems like you’d have to try really hard not to enjoy yourself.  From The Strokes to Robyn to Eminem to Girl Talk, it seems like every genre is represented over the four-day festival.

 

What song would you be embarrassed to be caught singing along to that you secretly sing all the time? February 16, 2011

What song would you be embarrassed to be caught singing along to that you secretly sing all the time?
TNT
I can’t stop singing “Fuck You” by Cee Lo Green, both the original and the radio edit.  I love the 50s groove that the track produces and the echoing doo-woop ladies are the cherries on top.  Lots of people have had bad relationships and could relate, but I’m embarrassed to be caught singing the track because I am so happy in my mine.  Oh, and I always get a little red when someone catches me singing “Big Balls” by AC/DC, especially when they’ve never heard it before.

Daniel-Edward
Typically I have no shame when it comes to my taste in music, but when I hear some catchy tween tunes, I tend to keep those on the down-low. But for the sake of NVMP, I’ll share my current guilty pleasure: “Round and Round” by Selena Gomez & The Scene.  It’s bubblegum pop that pushes the boundaries of all things saccharine, but it’s so damn catchy!

Angela
Unfortunately, “We R Who We R” by Ke$ha is my guilty pleasure.  I justify it by saying “I’m in the car so much and it’s on the radio so often, I can’t help but learn it.”  Truth is, if nothing else is on, I’ll just leave it playing.  She’s a talentless auto-tuned poor excuse for an artist, but someone in her camp is producing and marketing her right because she’s still here.  “Cause we make the hipsters fall in love when we got our hot pants on and up.”  I have no idea what the hell that even means, but know she sings it.  Don’t you dare stare at me in the car when it comes on expecting impromptu karaoke; I won’t do it.

Klone
Wow, this is going to be painful, but…”Dynamite” by Taio Cruz.  I DJ-ed my company Holiday party this past December, which bombarded me with poppy guilty pleasures like this crowd pleaser.  It’s catchy, what can I say?  I am thoroughly embarrassed even admitting this, so there you go Internetica.

Hoverbee
I confess to knowing all the words to the Tom Jones song “She’s a Lady.”  This is the song I secretly sing along to all the time but would be embarrassed to be caught singing.  Either that or Barry Manilow’s “Copacabana.”  There are probably a few more, but these two would make me blush.

Mark
Suddenly I am drawing a blank (What convenient timing!) Truthfully, there aren’t any particular songs that I secretly sing all the time, but in the past I have found myself singing early 80’s Madonna songs (“Borderline”, “Lucky Star”) and “Too Shy” by Kajagoogoo, which wouldn’t be so bad if it wasn’t such an effeminate song.  This is something I wouldn’t go telling everybody…well, at least until now.

Stigz
Would be James Brown “Get Up Offa That Thing” but James Brown is the man, and I’ll shout it from the rooftops.  Either “African Child” by Aldious Snow or “Respect” by Aretha Franklin (with my own lyrical liberties).

 

What is the most significant musical experience you’ve had but your children will never have? February 3, 2011

Filed under: Music Questions — NVMP @ 9:15 AM

This week’s question: What is the most significant musical experience you’ve had but your children will never have?

TNT
The feeling you get when you open a brand new CD and play it for the first time.  With the way we listen and discover new music today, I just don’t think the feeling will be the same for the next generation.  In my mind, they’ll be thinking “Why would I bother going out to a store to buy a CD, spend five minutes trying to tear it open, find a CD player and then enjoy?  Using iTunes is an instant download”.  As this may be true, you can’t flip through the album book with your digital copy and you can’t add it to your physical music collection (although for the next generation, that will consist of a hard drive with backed up files).  They’ll have to inherit mommy’s collection.
Daniel-Edward
The mix tape/CD. In a day and age when cars come out of the factories iPod compatible, the art of the mix tape/CD is a quickly fading one.  Playlists give you an unlimited amount of time to mix songs, tell a story or convey something whether it be ‘I love you’ or ‘happy birthday’.  Mix CDs give you about 18 tracks to get your point across, and depending on the occasion, making them can be an art.  Who knows if CDs will even exist when our kids come bursting forth from their matriarchal wombs?  There’s a beauty to a Valentine’s Day mix that includes the song that was playing when two people first met, or a birthday mix with a mutual favorite song.  The track limit ensures the mix creator makes each one count, and doesn’t waste precious minutes on some superfluous filler.
Angela
The most significant musical experience I’ve had but my children will not is probably seeing legendary bands like the Beach Boys, Van Halen and Santana.  I saw the Beach Boys with my parents as a kid and the same with Van Halen (the first time, second time I was college aged).  I know my kids will never get the opportunity to see them by the time they’re old enough to remember such an experience.  Maybe I didn’t fully appreciate it at the time but I was being introduced to the concert experience, something that clearly has direct bearing on the path in life I walk.  Maybe there will be artists I can take them to see that are of legendary status by the time I get around to having kids.  I’ll take them to see Green Day the same way my parents took me to the Beach Boys.
Klone
Spending $15 for one song…(but who would really miss that?)  It’s funny, because I even have trouble reminding people who are my age, let alone younger, that there was a time that taking a chance on a song could be expensive.  In the days before iTunes, and even before Napster, you didn’t have many options to check out an album before you bought it.  Unless you had a friend who bought the CD first and let you listen to it (or dare I even say make a tape of it for you…tape, yeah, remember that?) you pretty much were going into your CD purchase basically blind, with the exception of the one song you’ve heard that made you want to buy it in the first place.  Often times, especially if the band you were buying turned out to be a one-hit-wonder, you’d wind up spending $15 for the one song you like, and dealing with the 10-12 other tracks that pretty much sucked.  When you think about it in those terms, $0.99 – $1.29 for a song is quite the deal.
Hoverbee
Although MTV is not what it used to be and we at NVMP banned the 2010 Video Music Awards, I’d have to say the birth of music television is one of the most significant musical experiences I’ve had, but my children will never have.  However good or bad we felt about MTV when it debuted, it definitely changed how we listened to and looked at music.
Mark
There are quite a few intricately significant musical experiences that I have had over the past two decades of life, but being that I can’t write a novel about these surreal experiences, the one I would have to go with would be watching one of the greatest contemporary composers perform an amazing piano/quartet set within the technological monolith that is the Apple store…and that would be the great Philip Glass.  Watching one of the true masters of piano/orchestral and experimental music was a true out-of-body experience that could only be shared with the people who were in my presence at that very point in time.  Something that I could never fully explain to my own children, as they would have to have seen the unworldly piano work of Mr. Glass to truly have taken in the monumental alignment within the musical universe that would have notated itself to life before them.  It is a sadly unfortunate miss for them.
Stigz
This question is loaded, and I’d like to say something like “Saw Smokey Robinson and Cheap Trick play live,” but that would be cheating, like my parents saying “Woodstock.”  (Since obviously, I don’t have a time machine and Doc Brown is not a good friend of mine). Rather than musical experience in the sense of a concert, I want to refer to the sense of a phenomenon.  What phenomenons?  The invention and acceptance of Electronic Dance Music by millions.  The birth (and death) of modern rap (see: how we went from Nas, Tupac, Biggie, and the like to Lil Wayne, Kanye West and Autoned Hacks everywhere)…but I think the most significant musical phenomenon I’ve witness, is the impact of things like the internet on the music industry.  Nobody saw iPods or Napster coming and they changed everything in the music business, forever.