BORN IN THE USA v GRACELAND v BROTHERS IN ARMS

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Poll Results

OptionVotes
BORN IN THE USA 33
GRACELAND 30
BROTHERS IN ARMS 8


joseph sixpack (ice crӕm), Saturday, 11 October 2008 14:40 (nine years ago) Permalink

I think I've hummed "I'm on Fire" every single day since I first heard it on MTV back in the day. I'll go with the Boss for that simple reason.

QuantumNoise, Saturday, 11 October 2008 14:49 (nine years ago) Permalink

Knopfler

Carrie Bradshaw Layfield (The stickman from the hilarious 'xkcd' comics), Saturday, 11 October 2008 14:49 (nine years ago) Permalink

Graceland, even if Simon is a bit of a doofus.

Alex in SF, Saturday, 11 October 2008 14:54 (nine years ago) Permalink

Only one of these albums has "Glory Days".

its cool bro i'm a rugby league player (King Boy Pato), Saturday, 11 October 2008 14:58 (nine years ago) Permalink

It should be "So Far Away" vs "I'm On Fire" vs "Graceland."

Alfred, Lord Sotosyn, Saturday, 11 October 2008 15:02 (nine years ago) Permalink

money for nothin v born in the usa v call me al
darlington county v boy in the bubble v brothers in arms

vvvvvvvvvvvv!!!!

joseph sixpack (ice crӕm), Saturday, 11 October 2008 15:07 (nine years ago) Permalink

holy shit this is way too hard

t_g, Saturday, 11 October 2008 15:19 (nine years ago) Permalink

i voted for bruce. i was in a store last week and "i'm on fire" was playing -- i got annoyed when they cut it off to make a repetitive "management to register 6" type announcement.

Schwarzwalder Kirschtorte (get bent), Saturday, 11 October 2008 15:21 (nine years ago) Permalink

hell, sometimes I prefer "Downbound Train" to "I'm On Fire," especially the quasi a cappella section.

Alfred, Lord Sotosyn, Saturday, 11 October 2008 15:23 (nine years ago) Permalink

v. tough, at least separating out bruce and paul. i like the dire straits album, but i don't think it's in the same league. i guess i'd go:

born => graceland >>>> bros

tipsy mothra, Saturday, 11 October 2008 19:16 (nine years ago) Permalink

bruce

'downbound train' is seriously ;_;

joe 40oz (deej), Saturday, 11 October 2008 19:24 (nine years ago) Permalink

Last night I heard your voice
You were crying, crying, you were so alone
You said your love had never died
You were waiting for me at home
Put on my jacket, I ran through the woods
I ran till I thought my chest would explode
There in the clearing, beyond the highway
In the moonlight, our wedding house shone
I rushed through the yard, I burst through the front door
My head pounding hard, up the stairs I climbed
The room was dark, our bed was empty
Then I heard that long whistle whine
And I dropped to my knees, hung my head and cried

joe 40oz (deej), Saturday, 11 October 2008 19:25 (nine years ago) Permalink

:(

joe 40oz (deej), Saturday, 11 October 2008 19:25 (nine years ago) Permalink

That's the part I meant. "And I dropped to my knees, hung my head and cried" reminds me of my favorite bits in the Old Testament.

Alfred, Lord Sotosyn, Saturday, 11 October 2008 19:28 (nine years ago) Permalink

"Adam Raised a Cane" indeed.

"I'ma lose my religion and go secular on you, boy" (Ioannis), Saturday, 11 October 2008 19:30 (nine years ago) Permalink

"Your Latest Trick" vs. "Under African Skies" vs. "My Hometown".

Eazy, Saturday, 11 October 2008 19:32 (nine years ago) Permalink

my hometown is also heartbreaking ;_; but i lived a few of my childhood years in a small rural town that just got a wal mart

joe 40oz (deej), Saturday, 11 October 2008 19:36 (nine years ago) Permalink

When I saw Bruce on The Rising tour, Eddie Vedder came out and they did that song as a duet. Worked out fine.

Eazy, Saturday, 11 October 2008 19:44 (nine years ago) Permalink

I am probably the only one who votes for "Brothers In Arms" here, but I like it.

I like "Born In The USA" too, while "Graceland" for me represented the beginning of the end regarding Paul Simon. (Everything he did before it was ace)

Geir Hongro, Saturday, 11 October 2008 19:53 (nine years ago) Permalink

I should be added that "Hearts And Bones" is way better than anything Bruce Springsteen or Dire Straits have ever made.

Geir Hongro, Saturday, 11 October 2008 19:54 (nine years ago) Permalink

Familiar with all three as my dad had them all growing up.

Graceland I think is the most consistent and gets my vote, but they all have their moments - I'm On Fire is great, and Italians Do It Better recently showed it love by doing an edit (can't remember which act right now).

Even Dire Straights which is probly my least favourite turned up on the Otterman Empire 12 - the first release on WEWW. Plus Knofler's Local Hero soundtrack from around the same time has some great moments even if Billy Connolly recently sullied its memory by claiming for one of his fatuous TV shows.

They've all dated really well haven't they?

Treblekicker, Saturday, 11 October 2008 20:48 (nine years ago) Permalink

no talk of edits in this thread

joe 40oz (deej), Saturday, 11 October 2008 20:49 (nine years ago) Permalink

Haha. I won't mention Tangoterje if you don't :)

Graceland FTW.

Treblekicker, Saturday, 11 October 2008 20:53 (nine years ago) Permalink

Title songs: "Graceland" >> "Brothers in Arms" >> "Born in the U.S.A." (at least the album version)

Eazy, Saturday, 11 October 2008 20:57 (nine years ago) Permalink

brothers in arms doesn't belong on the list because you can't change the title to fit the word gay in

born in the usGAY vs. GAYceland vs ????

buzza, Saturday, 11 October 2008 21:09 (nine years ago) Permalink

C'mon. "Brothers in Arms" is a pretty gey title to start with.

bendy, Saturday, 11 October 2008 21:21 (nine years ago) Permalink

Brothers in Arse

buzza, Saturday, 11 October 2008 21:26 (nine years ago) Permalink

Guy i know had a friend who got terminal cancer in his teens and died at eighteen. At the end of his funeral, at his request, they played Brothers in Arms followed by the theme from Baywatch.

jim, Saturday, 11 October 2008 22:23 (nine years ago) Permalink

last laugh gotten

joseph sixpack (ice crӕm), Saturday, 11 October 2008 22:59 (nine years ago) Permalink

It wasn't an edit, Chromatics covered it, they're version is really nice and stoned.

Graceland though, there are too many nuggets of melody that somehow sound so epiphanic just nestled into that expansive pseudo-high life sound sound.

I know, right?, Saturday, 11 October 2008 23:28 (nine years ago) Permalink

I have no problem with the pseudo-high life sound. What bugs me is the lack of nuggets of melodies. Which is partly because of the way "Graceland" was composed. Starting with the backing track first and composing the melody at least is rarely something that brings good tunes. The arrangements should be formed after the melody, not otherwise.

Geir Hongro, Saturday, 11 October 2008 23:35 (nine years ago) Permalink

Time and distance allows me to say without irony that all three of these albums are awesome. Except for Graceland.

Like sicking a little bit of water into my mouth (HI DERE), Saturday, 11 October 2008 23:37 (nine years ago) Permalink

Forgotten about the Chromatics cover (which is nice too). Was actually was thinking of the Cousin Cole edit (no IDIB connection other than sound)

We don't talk about edits on this thread - but you can hear it here...
http://www.myspace.com/cousincole

Treblekicker, Saturday, 11 October 2008 23:38 (nine years ago) Permalink

Geir, that is totally bashit.

Alfred, Lord Sotosyn, Saturday, 11 October 2008 23:38 (nine years ago) Permalink

batshit too.

Alfred, Lord Sotosyn, Saturday, 11 October 2008 23:38 (nine years ago) Permalink

surprised?

I know, right?, Saturday, 11 October 2008 23:41 (nine years ago) Permalink

Actually, Geir's point isn't totally batshit, otherwise copyright laws would extend to chord progressions and arrangements rather than the lyrics and melody. It's a very Music Theory 100 approach to creating a song ("invent a tune, then create harmony for it") but it's still valid and, arguably, the way the majority of songwriters operate.

Like sicking a little bit of water into my mouth (HI DERE), Saturday, 11 October 2008 23:42 (nine years ago) Permalink

how are there not 'nuggets of melodies' lol

joe 40oz (deej), Saturday, 11 October 2008 23:43 (nine years ago) Permalink

(The reader will notice that I conviently ignored the parts of Geir's post that were indefensible horseshit to make my point.)

Like sicking a little bit of water into my mouth (HI DERE), Saturday, 11 October 2008 23:44 (nine years ago) Permalink

Music Theory is the only correct way to approach songwriting. The more closely classical music values are being followed, the better pop comes out of it.

Geir Hongro, Sunday, 12 October 2008 03:42 (nine years ago) Permalink

awesome poll

max, Sunday, 12 October 2008 13:49 (nine years ago) Permalink

1. Born In The USA
2. Graceland
3. Brothers In Arms

kornrulez6969, Sunday, 12 October 2008 15:43 (nine years ago) Permalink

Automatic thread bump. This poll is closing tomorrow.

System, Sunday, 19 October 2008 23:01 (nine years ago) Permalink

What bugs me is the lack of nuggets of melodies.

Geir, at this point you really are turning off stuff, based on adherence to dogma, that it seems like you would actually enjoy! I say this not to beat my head against a wall but to turn you on to a record that I think would be to your taste.

Yes, the rhythm tracks came first, but listen to this album! The melodies on some of these are among the best Paul Simon ever wrote - I mean, the title track and Diamonds on the Soles of Her Shoes seem like they should be right up her alley, and I wouldn't bat an eye if they turned up on Hearts and Bones. We can even sweeten the deal and trade them in for "Cars are Cars" which I suspect isn't as much your cup of tea.

Doctor Casino, Monday, 20 October 2008 02:27 (nine years ago) Permalink

Also "Crazy Love Pt. II" - I mean the way he sings "Fat Charlie the archangel sloped into the room..." is as lyrical and melodic as Simon gets. Also "Under African Skies."

Doctor Casino, Monday, 20 October 2008 02:28 (nine years ago) Permalink

"And I dropped to my knees, hung my head and cried" reminds me of my favorite bits in the Old Testament.

A striking aside, Soto! Thanx for that!

Kevin John Bozelka, Monday, 20 October 2008 03:13 (nine years ago) Permalink

Like a church morning distilled into several words.

Kevin John Bozelka, Monday, 20 October 2008 03:14 (nine years ago) Permalink

"Yeah, buddy, that's his own hair" has the same effect.

Eazy, Monday, 20 October 2008 03:57 (nine years ago) Permalink

More seriously, though:
All the late night bargains have been struck
Between the satin beaus and their belles
And prehistoric garbage trucks
Have the city to themselves
Echoes roars dinosaurs
They're all doing the monster mash
And most of the taxis and the whores
Are only taking calls for cash

I don't know how it happened
It all took place so quick
But all I can do is hand it to you
And your latest trick

My door was standing open
Security was laid back and lax
But it was only my heart got broken
You must have had a pass key made out of wax
You played robbery with insolence
And I played the blues in twelve bars down Lover's Lane
And you never did have the intelligence to use
The twelve keys hanging off my chain

I don't know how it happened
It all took place so quick
But all I can do is hand it to you
And your latest trick

Now it's past last call for alcohol
Past recall has been here and gone
The landlord finally paid us all
The satin jazzmen have put away their horns
And we're standing outside of this wonderland
Looking so bereaved and so bereft
Like a Bowery bum when he finally understands
The bottle's empty and there's nothing left

I don't know how it happened
It was faster than the eye could flick
But now all I can do is hand it to you
And your latest trick

Eazy, Monday, 20 October 2008 03:59 (nine years ago) Permalink

Reading about the Los Lobos controversy embittered me toward Graceland. Knopfler's just fine, but in the end its gotta be Broooooooooooce.

Pillbox, Monday, 20 October 2008 04:04 (nine years ago) Permalink

Yes, the rhythm tracks came first

But so did the chords too, and that's the main problem. Repetitive chords in the bottom are never the best way to create a good melody because changing chords is so essential to good songwriting.

Geir Hongro, Monday, 20 October 2008 05:00 (nine years ago) Permalink

I rarely like songs that has the same chord sequence repeated over and over again.

Geir Hongro, Monday, 20 October 2008 05:01 (nine years ago) Permalink

uh, the chords do change, what are you talking about

joe 40oz (deej), Monday, 20 October 2008 18:53 (nine years ago) Permalink

Well, "Diamonds On The Soles Of Here Shoes", which is the song on "Graceland" that works best as an actual song, has three chords. Three chords is way too little, particularly when we are speaking of I-IV-V. That theme is repeated all over again, there is no evaluation, no CLIMAX!

Geir Hongro, Monday, 20 October 2008 18:57 (nine years ago) Permalink

Geir, I thought the same thing as Doctor Casino when I read your comments about the pre-recorded tracks. And respectfully, I completely disagree with your assertion that repetitive chords in the bottom are never the best way to create a good melody. They aren't always the best way -- it's actually quite a bit easier to create a good melody over complicated chords.

But some of the best TUNES—that is MELODIES—in pop music history have been written over very, very simple chords. As someone who writes songs with complicated changes myself, I can tell you — they're a crutch, not an elixir. It's far more of a testament to your songwriting skills to write a good melody over simple chords than complicated ones.

Naive Teen Idol, Monday, 20 October 2008 19:11 (nine years ago) Permalink

And respectfully, I completely disagree with your assertion that repetitive chords in the bottom are never the best way to create a good melody. They aren't always the best way -- it's actually quite a bit easier to create a good melody over complicated chords.

But it isn't SUPPOSED to be easy!!!!
I want it to require some classic music theoretic schooling. The best songwriters are the ones who know all the tricks, all the hooks, know their history, in short know a LOT
And Paul Simon does that. His 70s and early 80s songs were crowded with those subtle details that proved this is a man with some schooling, a man who knows a lot more about music than the man on the street, this is an EXPERT! And that's what makes his 70s and early 80s so great, because he is better than most people, and he shows off his abilities and shows off how he is superior. Just like Paul McCartney at his best, just like 10cc at their best, just like Queen at their best, just like Genesis at their best.

Geir Hongro, Monday, 20 October 2008 19:15 (nine years ago) Permalink

But it isn't SUPPOSED to be easy!!!!

Do his bidding, guys.

Alfred, Lord Sotosyn, Monday, 20 October 2008 19:15 (nine years ago) Permalink

And just like Mozart at his best for that matter. Because Mozart should be a reference to a much bigger extent than he is. Even in pop music.

Geir Hongro, Monday, 20 October 2008 19:16 (nine years ago) Permalink

Three chords is way too little, particularly when we are speaking of I-IV-V. That theme is repeated all over again, there is no evaluation, no CLIMAX!

The end up sleeping in a doorway -- that's climactic!

Eazy, Monday, 20 October 2008 19:45 (nine years ago) Permalink

I heard "Born in the U.S.A." in the grocery store the other night, started listening to the lyrics, and, man, what a bring-down. I was thinking about the beat-too-much narrator and his all-gone buddy the rest of the evening. It's hard to believe such a bleak song was a hit. And it works in spite of (because of?) skeletal melody and song form. So: the Boss.

Brad C., Monday, 20 October 2008 19:47 (nine years ago) Permalink

Born in the USA: two fucking chords and one of the 5 best songs of the 80s, or something like that. The simplicity of that song just slays.

But this poll is albums, and I have too many fond attachments to Graceland not to vote for it.

What's good for Wall Street (call all destroyer), Monday, 20 October 2008 19:53 (nine years ago) Permalink

The same concert (one of Neil Young's Bridge Benefit shows) that has this version of "Dancing in the Dark" also has the bleakest, starkest version of "Born in the U.S.A." as well as "Seeds", all acoustic.

Eazy, Monday, 20 October 2008 19:57 (nine years ago) Permalink

yeah born in the usa is sad....how many "feel good" anthems have lyrics like "you end up like a dog that's been beat too much"?

M@tt He1ges0n, Monday, 20 October 2008 19:58 (nine years ago) Permalink

There are way better songs on the "Born In The USA" album than the title track. "My Hometown" and "Dancing In The Dark" are ace in particular.

Geir Hongro, Monday, 20 October 2008 19:59 (nine years ago) Permalink

Well I like the title track more because it has fewer chords.

What's good for Wall Street (call all destroyer), Monday, 20 October 2008 20:00 (nine years ago) Permalink

The same concert (one of Neil Young's Bridge Benefit shows) that has this version of "Dancing in the Dark" also has the bleakest, starkest version of "Born in the U.S.A." as well as "Seeds", all acoustic.

― Eazy, Monday, October 20, 2008 3:57 PM (4 minutes ago) Bookmark Suggest Ban Permalink

wowo!

888 (ice crӕm), Monday, 20 October 2008 20:02 (nine years ago) Permalink

More is more. More chords is better than few chords.

Geir Hongro, Monday, 20 October 2008 20:05 (nine years ago) Permalink

"Heart of the Sunrise" vs. "Amazing Grace" thunderdome.

Eazy, Monday, 20 October 2008 20:06 (nine years ago) Permalink

"My Hometown" would have been nothing without the bridge though. That bridge does the entire song with its sudden change into minor.

Geir Hongro, Monday, 20 October 2008 20:06 (nine years ago) Permalink

yall shd seek out the insane-o version of bitusa from the bruce live in nyc disc where he plays a slide guitar for like 10 minutes and it sounds like a sitar

max, Monday, 20 October 2008 20:08 (nine years ago) Permalink

More is more.

Thank you for this.

What's good for Wall Street (call all destroyer), Monday, 20 October 2008 20:08 (nine years ago) Permalink

brothers in arms

SANJAY BLOGDAI SANJAY (John Justen), Monday, 20 October 2008 20:34 (nine years ago) Permalink

Graceland can cram it with walnuts, especially because of Simon's rampant ripoffery:
http://www.jambase.com/Articles/Story.aspx?StoryID=9391&pagenum=3

Brothers In Arms is automatically disqualified for that dopey-ass "sports bloopers" "Walk of Life" video that MTV decided must be played 73,000 times a day.

So, Born In The USA it is.

Sara Sara Sara, Monday, 20 October 2008 20:43 (nine years ago) Permalink

i was just talkg to someone abt the lol sports bloopers video

888 (ice crӕm), Monday, 20 October 2008 20:55 (nine years ago) Permalink

such a profoundly strange concept

888 (ice crӕm), Monday, 20 October 2008 20:55 (nine years ago) Permalink

dudes i feel u that paul simon is an asshole or whatever but that doesnt make graceland suck

max, Monday, 20 October 2008 20:58 (nine years ago) Permalink

But it isn't SUPPOSED to be easy!!!!
But the fact of the matter is, it is easier. My point is: it's more a testament to a songwriter's melodic virtuosity when they are able to compose interesting, surprising melodies over uninteresting, predictable chords.

Naive Teen Idol, Monday, 20 October 2008 21:26 (nine years ago) Permalink

But I thought more was more.

What's good for Wall Street (call all destroyer), Monday, 20 October 2008 21:39 (nine years ago) Permalink

Graceland way way waaaaay out front of this pack for me, which I attribute to the range of really excellent people involved/contributing material. Los Lobos' story about getting burned on the credit for "The Myth of Fingerprints" is great.

Shakey Mo Collier, Monday, 20 October 2008 21:47 (nine years ago) Permalink

Automatic thread bump. This poll's results are now in.

System, Monday, 20 October 2008 23:01 (nine years ago) Permalink

My point is: it's more a testament to a songwriter's melodic virtuosity when they are able to compose interesting, surprising melodies over uninteresting, predictable chords.

I admire a lot more those who manage to add interesting and complex chords to an otherwise straightforward and relatively banal melody.

Geir Hongro, Monday, 20 October 2008 23:08 (nine years ago) Permalink

especially because of Simon's rampant ripoffery:

the rampant ripoffery is what makes it great! I don't give a shit about Bruce or Knopfler's songs. I don't really give a shit about Paul Simon's material by this point either, but he sure had good taste in who to rip off.

Shakey Mo Collier, Monday, 20 October 2008 23:11 (nine years ago) Permalink

I admire a lot more those who manage to add interesting and complex chords to an otherwise straightforward and relatively banal melody.

Mmm'kay. You have any great pop songwriting examples of this in mind?

Naive Teen Idol, Tuesday, 21 October 2008 01:23 (nine years ago) Permalink

eight years pass...

I love big sounding productions, but the production on Born in the USA sounds really obnoxious to me... the drums in particular sound really shitty.

more Allegro-like (Turrican), Wednesday, 13 September 2017 18:39 (two months ago) Permalink

i love graceland

ive never listened to the other two records tbh!

marcos, Wednesday, 13 September 2017 18:44 (two months ago) Permalink

There's a drum solo at the end of the title track of Born in the USA that would sound great if it wasn't smothered in too much reverb.

more Allegro-like (Turrican), Wednesday, 13 September 2017 18:46 (two months ago) Permalink

The so-called (Bruce) album collection that came out a couple/few years ago is really tastefully remastered imo. the drums sound WAY less cardboard box-y, and in fact great

freedom is not having to measure life with a ruler (outdoor_miner), Wednesday, 13 September 2017 20:07 (two months ago) Permalink

Graceland was robbed

Springsteen fans are so weird. I feel like I understand his appeal but it's just not for me at all.

Οὖτις, Wednesday, 13 September 2017 20:09 (two months ago) Permalink

yea i have always wanted to devote the time to learn why he is so beloved but he's never interested me

marcos, Wednesday, 13 September 2017 20:11 (two months ago) Permalink

I have a (probably entirely unfounded) suspicion that you have to be from the east coast to dig him. I don't know any native Californians that give a fuck about him for ex.

Οὖτις, Wednesday, 13 September 2017 20:14 (two months ago) Permalink

i'm from nevada and i love bronze sprongstein

ToddBonzalez (BradNelson), Wednesday, 13 September 2017 20:37 (two months ago) Permalink

Greil Marcus is Californian till he dies. Xpost

the Rain Man of nationalism. (Alfred, Lord Sotosyn), Wednesday, 13 September 2017 20:44 (two months ago) Permalink

what will he be after he dies?

Οὖτις, Wednesday, 13 September 2017 20:45 (two months ago) Permalink

compost

Cheds Baker (Noodle Vague), Wednesday, 13 September 2017 21:09 (two months ago) Permalink

the dead have no country

ToddBonzalez (BradNelson), Wednesday, 13 September 2017 21:21 (two months ago) Permalink

For me, this goes:

Brothers in Arms > Graceland > Born in the USA

I prefer The Rhythm of the Saints over Graceland, to be honest.

more Allegro-like (Turrican), Thursday, 14 September 2017 06:19 (two months ago) Permalink


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