Saturday, September 29, 2012

36 Songs, 36 Days (2012 Edition), Day Twenty Nine: NYCUFOs by NYCUFOs

..because Omaha UFO's doesn't have the same ring to it...
I want to say up front that I know absolutely nothing--and I mean nothing--about this band, save that their album, Newer Stations, was available (and still is available) for free on bandcamp and that they're a quartet. The picture to the left is the only one I could find of them. I have to assume they're from my hometown, but I guess even that supposition is based on potentially spurious assumptions (i.e. if they were from Green Bay, they'd be Green Bay UFOs).

Given the lack of information, I have to go on the song itself. And the song itself is a strange Frankenstein's monster of influences. I can get snatches of The Jesus and Mary Chain, a variety of early 80's pop bands, some Velvet Underground, and The Replacements in there.

...actually, I get a lot of The Replacements, especially in the vocals and the guitar riffs. Someone must have really listened closely to Paul Westerberg and Tommy Stinson in their youth, because Joe Haller and Chris Auger are obviously striving to imitate (or 'hommage') the band. What separates them from their heroes is the hazy distortion that they obviously borrowed from the J&M Chain. This doesn't separate them completely from the 'Mats influence, however, as what ultimately results sounds like a Replacements cover band playing their songs through seriously blown speakers.

The song itself is in the tradition of the 'band theme song. Oddly enough, when I sussed this out I got a whiff of another possible influence--They Might Be Giants, who wrote a theme song for The Replacements that remains one of my favorite songs of theirs early in their career. Half advertising (the chorus' last line exhorts us to 'Go and See The NYC UFOs') and half tv show jingle, the song does have a strange charm to it. And it also makes me wonder, given that they haven't produced anything new since the release of this album in 2010, what happened to them. After all, there is some promise amidst this influence soup, and there is always the possibility these four would slough off the obvious imitations and find their true nature down the line.

Here is a link to get Newer Stations.
....and since this song has no video, here's a live performance of 'Hi, We're The Replacements,' the They Might Be Giants song I was talking about, at a Barnes and Nobles..

No comments:

Post a Comment