Tuesday, April 26, 2011

30 Songs, 30 Days (2009 Edition), Day Eighteen: Grade Nine by Barenaked Ladies

And here we have the first Barenaked Ladies song I ever liked...and the one that prevented me from getting into them until later.

I have established my love of things ska in a previous entry in this series. When I first heard this song on one of the rare attempts to create an new alternative rock station here in New York out of the ashes of WLIR/DRE, I went nuts.* After all, here was a brand new ska band who had the same sense of fun the classic 'revival bands' of the 80's had...

And then I heard the other tracks on Gordon, the Barenaked Ladies' initial album...and I got thoroughly confused. A trip up to the aforementioned radio station's super-tiny studio to see an acoustic performance by them further confused me. I mean, yeah, I liked "Brian Wilson," the second single from the album, but it...it wasn't like this one.

Later on, when I discovered the true joy of the Ladies the way most Americans did with Stunt, I was able to re-acquaint myself with this song. In retrospect, it's actually a textbook example of what we now know as 'geek rock.' It's all there--the references to being an outcast, outright geek references and a winsome fondness for high school. It's almost required that a geek rock combo to do a paen to their high school days, isn't it?

No video for this song officially--Much Music apparently created one that Warners was NOT happy with...so here's a live version.
*--I don't know why, for a city as musically diverse as New York, we are throughly incapable of supporting an alternative rock station. I can't speak for anyone else, but I am tired of having to choose between three different top 40 stations, four different urban contemporary and two reggaton stations. At least WRXP, one of two 'classic rock' stations, is more than willing to acknowledge that alternative rock is a viable genre, and will play such modern acts as MGMT, Death Cab for Cutie, Kings of Leon and my new favorite band, The Hold Steady.

No comments:

Post a Comment