The Cars - C or D/S&D

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Synth-pop pioneers or a dollar store Talking Heads? YOU make the call!

Nate Patrin, Sunday, 19 May 2002 00:00 (seventeen years ago) link

I'll say Classic based on their debut alone. Search that and their later singles ("Let's Go"; "Shake It Up"), destroy most of Heartbeat City and all of Door to Door.

Nate Patrin, Sunday, 19 May 2002 00:00 (seventeen years ago) link

What wouldn't you destroy on Heartbeat City? Oh, wait, that album has "Drive." OK.

Mark, Sunday, 19 May 2002 00:00 (seventeen years ago) link

Well, "Drive" isn't that good, but to me any album with a cover featuring a Plymouth 340 Duster is safe from my wrath. I'm kind of pathetic that way.

Nate Patrin, Sunday, 19 May 2002 00:00 (seventeen years ago) link

Classic up until "Heartbeat City".

Sean, Sunday, 19 May 2002 00:00 (seventeen years ago) link

I'd say they were the Weezer of their time, but the Cars had better songs. Still, being a dollar store Talking Heads (Modern Lovers alumni making bank) isn't necessarily a bad thing.

J Blount, Sunday, 19 May 2002 00:00 (seventeen years ago) link

That's weird, I heard a song of theirs on the radio today and wondered if they'd been discussed here. I think they sound markedly different from other synth groups, and it may be because they're more synth-ROCK than synth-pop. (Or maybe I'm just hearing them through the filter of years of heavy classic rock radio airplay - that's certainly a possibility.)

Clarke B., Sunday, 19 May 2002 00:00 (seventeen years ago) link

Definitely more rock, that was their thing -- a cleaner, crisper and less overtly weird Roxy Music for the Americas, if you like. You could tell Ric Ocasek liked Suicide without ever really wanting to sound like them. The Weezer comparison is interesting...

Ned Raggett, Sunday, 19 May 2002 00:00 (seventeen years ago) link

"You could tell Ric Ocasek liked Suicide without ever really wanting to sound like them."

Hence his production work on their second album?

Nate Patrin, Sunday, 19 May 2002 00:00 (seventeen years ago) link

Yup.

Ned Raggett, Sunday, 19 May 2002 00:00 (seventeen years ago) link

'Candy-O' is the second best 'rock' album in the world ever. After 'Led Zep IV' of course

dave q, Monday, 20 May 2002 00:00 (seventeen years ago) link

"It doesn't matter where you been, as long as it was deep"; that's the only aphorism ever not to make me depressed. Well, ok, only really slightly, almost unnoticeably depressed.

How do you reckon you can tell that Ric Ocasek liked Suicide from his music? The Suicide album he produced wasn't really particularly great, was it? I'm sure that wasn't his fault, though. Suicide to me seems to be more like 'about music' whereas the Cars are 'about things.'

charles, Monday, 20 May 2002 00:00 (seventeen years ago) link

Proof of the Suicide thiong - "Shoo Bee Doo", of course, so all speculation can stop now

dave q, Monday, 20 May 2002 00:00 (seventeen years ago) link

If I hated them I'd say they were more of a dollar store Roxy Music - at least as far as the artwork was concerned (back of Panorama = the inner gatefold of For Your Pleasure, and so on, and so on). But anyway, classic for all the first album and chunks of Candy-O.

Damian, Monday, 20 May 2002 00:00 (seventeen years ago) link

Rik Ocasek produces Weezer, doesn't he? I always liked the Cars for what they were, a decent nu-wave radio act.

Dom Passantino, Monday, 20 May 2002 00:00 (seventeen years ago) link

The Cars were very important, if only because they were the first "new wave" band to be embraced by American AOR/classic-rock radio. They were sort of a "gateway drug" for millions AOR/classic- rock fans trapped in the suburbs with nothing but mainstream media for company, not to mention the fact that they subsequently influenced AOR/classic-rock artists themselves. Listen to the mid- '80s recordings of a band like, say, .38 Special. Hear all those clicky, compressed 8th-note rhythm guitar parts? Where do you think a bunch of reconstructed second-string Southern-boogie hair farmers came up with something like that?

Lee G, Monday, 20 May 2002 00:00 (seventeen years ago) link

i've only heard bits (hits) from their early albums -- ok i know most of the first record which is more rock with synth as bass/rhythm and that works

but it was the synth sound that differentiated them and maybe they were the only people game to try synth stuff in america what with it being so uncool and so non-rock -- so it had to be spiffed up with rock'n'roll imagery right out of sha-na-na hence corny "cars" angle as american drive-in '50s rock institution

they seemed to then get more and more lightweight and i feel panorama captures the lite-synth model cars working properly, although they could have taken the synths in any direction they wanted i suppose given the complete lack of competition for those sounds

ok they needed money, so after the public ignored the more intricate panorama they came back with stuff like the ultimate anti-drink-drive anthem and other easy listening stuff -- i think ocasek had to balance decent songwriting and public taste to pay bills

look at the band -- they're all hired musos except ocasek, who looks completely deviant and trying to hide it in mock juevenile get-up, so isn't this literally just another producer vehicle band ?

George Gosset, Tuesday, 21 May 2002 00:00 (seventeen years ago) link

Drummer David Robinson actually came from the Modern Lovers, so I'm not sure if he counts as a "studio muso".

Nate Patrin, Tuesday, 21 May 2002 00:00 (seventeen years ago) link

Or "hired muso" or whatever. Sorry, didn't get much sleep.

Nate Patrin, Tuesday, 21 May 2002 00:00 (seventeen years ago) link

one year passes...
revive! I am listening to "the cars anthology" right now. '

I like this band. I haven't listened to the proper albums except the debut and Heartbeat City. The first is very samey-sounding and somewhat pretty overplayed, but for the time and background it was in, very classic indeed. Damn those synths sound great. Heartbeat City was verging on tacky- I can only take it in small doses- but a listen once in a while is great! It has one of my very favorite 80's songs of all, You Might Think. I love this osng it is good enough to blast over and over in the car for at least 7 or 8 times. Can't believe nobody has mentioned it! It rocks so much and the video is unbelievably cool with Ric O. as the human fly scaring the giant nubile woman. OK, but anyway, from this anthology I just put on, I can tell these guys had more depth to them than the overplayed singles might tell you. Well there's the neurotic kind of scary lyrics that work very nicely with the bright pop music- and the Suicide connection is awesome. I love Suicide so much. Their 2nd (Ocasek produced) album is my favorite of theirs! You can hear that stuff in the song Panorama. Robot classic rock = Classic.

sucka (sucka), Friday, 30 January 2004 08:14 (fifteen years ago) link

I know little about The Cars but, FWIT, Air seem to rate them (+ Suicide)

***DJ Set - AIR***
Suicide - 'Ghost Rider' (Blast First)
John Carpenter - 'Assault On Precinct 13' (Record Makers)
Air - 'Another Day' (Virgin)
Missy Elliot - 'She's A Bitch' (East West)
The Cars - 'Heartbreak City' (Elektra)
Pheonix - 'Everything Is Everywhere' (Virgin)
Johnny Cash - 'Desperado' (American)

http://www.bbc.co.uk/radio1/dance/breezeblock/tracklistings.shtml

stevo (stevo), Friday, 30 January 2004 11:14 (fifteen years ago) link

Classic, for "My Best Friend's Girl" alone.

Ric Ocasek produced Weezer's Blue and Green albums, and maybe Maladroit, I'm not sure. They did Pinkerton themselves (so Rivers then), and you can tell.

Nick H (Nick H), Friday, 30 January 2004 12:43 (fifteen years ago) link

Wouldn't call the synthpop, but certainly classic. Their debut and "Heartbeat City" are the natural places to start, but the rest of their output has its moments too.

Geir Hongro (GeirHong), Friday, 30 January 2004 14:04 (fifteen years ago) link

On the basis of their first 3 LPs alone, classic. But you can't deny that a lot of their greatness (and success) was due to Roy Thomas Baker's production.

Myonga Von Bontee, Friday, 30 January 2004 22:31 (fifteen years ago) link

I was just listening to that Air breezblock mix this morning - I've never like "Heartbeat City" more. It was perfectly eerie and forlorn.

Spencer Chow (spencermfi), Friday, 30 January 2004 22:38 (fifteen years ago) link

nine months pass...
there are moments when i think that the cars are one of the more unjustly neglected new wave acts out there. if anything, i think that they're due for a re-evaluation by the corny indie fuXors community any day now.

Eisbär (llamasfur), Monday, 15 November 2004 06:23 (fourteen years ago) link

eisbar have you ever heard "stacy's mom"?

gygax! (gygax!), Monday, 15 November 2004 06:32 (fourteen years ago) link

yeah, i have ... i am outta step w/ things, as usual then!

Eisbär (llamasfur), Monday, 15 November 2004 06:42 (fourteen years ago) link

RJD2 just released a sorta-remix of "Through the Walls" where he gets RIC OCASEK~ to sing vocals. It SO FUCKING WORKS X1000

MC Transmaniacon (natepatrin), Monday, 15 November 2004 06:53 (fourteen years ago) link

Synth-pop pioneers or a dollar store Talking Heads? YOU make the call!

-- Nate Patrin (natepatrin550...), May 19th, 2002 9:00 PM. (link)

I clicked on this thread just now because I thought it read "The Czars" because I've been listening to the off and on today. Needless to say, I was quite confused by Nate's synopsis.

D'oh!

C all the way.

Johnny Fever (johnny fever), Monday, 15 November 2004 06:54 (fourteen years ago) link

Haha, I forgot I started this thread! Over TWO YEARS AGO. So old.

MC Transmaniacon (natepatrin), Monday, 15 November 2004 06:57 (fourteen years ago) link

Classic! Moving in Stereo! My Best Friend's Girl! That first album is fucking gold, one of the few debut albums where every single song is great.

kyle (akmonday), Monday, 15 November 2004 07:46 (fourteen years ago) link

Something to be said about splitting the difference between AOR and New Wave. Perfect band for non-punkists who like punk!

miccio (miccio), Monday, 15 November 2004 08:21 (fourteen years ago) link

And I prefer the debut to Candy-O but its possible I haven't given it (either!) the time it deserves.

miccio (miccio), Monday, 15 November 2004 08:24 (fourteen years ago) link

Classic. Later albums originally seemed a disappointment after first one because not new wave enough, but still had plenty of great singles. How many other bands can you still name all five members of after 20 plus years?

I once read an interview where it was revealed that the guitar hook in "My Best Friend's Girl" was borrowed from a Beatles song. Guess which.

Henry A Blacktune, Monday, 15 November 2004 08:28 (fourteen years ago) link

If you are so inclined, google up their bell-bottomed pre-Cars project, called Milkwood, I think.

And here is a stupid bandname I might post on another thread:

The Rick Okaysections

Henry A Blacktune, Monday, 15 November 2004 08:55 (fourteen years ago) link

Great band. And I'd say most of their albums were great too, not only those two that are the most famous ones.

They were kind of powerpop meets Television meets Gary Numan, which was a cool mixture.

Geir Hongro (GeirHong), Monday, 15 November 2004 13:32 (fourteen years ago) link

Sometimes I think I don't like Heartbeat City so much just because it was such a huge radio hit, and it was just driven into the ground through repetition. Then I remember the songs and how catchy they were and I realize I still like it.

I have the sentimental favourite thing going on for Shake It Up. It was the first one I realy listened to. Growing up in a small town, didn't get to hear much of the first three albums at all on the radio, because it was fairly conservative. Anyhow, thay played the title track, and then I got the album and discovered that a lot of the rest of the album was kinda dark. But really, in retrospect, the first two are untouchable.

Sean Carruthers (SeanC), Monday, 15 November 2004 14:09 (fourteen years ago) link

I once read an interview where it was revealed that the guitar hook in "My Best Friend's Girl" was borrowed from a Beatles song. Guess which.

Hmmm...I don't think it's "Drive My Car" :) "Twist & Shout?" (Altho that's more accurately an Isley Brothers song.)

Personally, I like The Cars' first 3 LPs ('specially the overlooked Panorama) and very little after that. And my favourite tracks are the weird ones that rarely get airplay, like "Down Boys" and "I'm In Touch With Your World".

Myonga Von Bontee (Myonga Von Bontee), Monday, 15 November 2004 20:05 (fourteen years ago) link

it's kind of like the guitar in "everybody's trying to be my baby" which also isn't really a beatles song, I guess, but I never really heard the original

kyle (akmonday), Monday, 15 November 2004 20:23 (fourteen years ago) link

Utterly classic. Debut is perfect.

This thread shouldn't even exist.

cdwill, Monday, 15 November 2004 21:27 (fourteen years ago) link

You mean the guitar hook that Easton plays in between verses on "My Best Friend's Girl?" The little rockabilly thing? That's straight out of "I Will," off the White Album.

Anywho, my favorite Cars track has always been "Since You're Gone." All in all, though, classic.

Phil Dennison (Phil D.), Monday, 15 November 2004 23:02 (fourteen years ago) link

You mean the guitar hook that Easton plays in between verses on "My Best Friend's Girl?" The little rockabilly thing? That's straight out of "I Will," off the White Album.

Shit, I never realized that! And you can bet that the "I Will" one was lifted from some Carl Perkins record, too!

Naive Teen Idol (Naive Teen Idol), Tuesday, 16 November 2004 02:37 (fourteen years ago) link

Easton's solo record on Elektra was great, too.

Rickey Wright (Rrrickey), Tuesday, 16 November 2004 05:02 (fourteen years ago) link

nine months pass...
Weirdest reunion rumor ever...

Ric Ocasek is managed by Elliot Roberts, but his office would confirm only that Ocasek will release another solo album in September and that he would not be part of any Cars tour if it happened. Further inquiries were referred to Kovac.

Now, this is where the story gets really interesting. Since Ocasek won't do the tour, Easton and Hawkes have apparently recruited an old friend to step into his shoes.

Todd Rundgren is reportedly set to sing most of the lead vocals previously handled by Ocasek and Orr. Anyone familiar with Rundgren's talents as a musical chameleon would easily understand how the Runt could make it work.

Though I'd rather have The Cars be Rundgren's backing band.

Elvis Telecom (Chris Barrus), Friday, 9 September 2005 03:14 (fourteen years ago) link

one month passes...
been on a new CARS kick lately. with ric ocasek's new solo album out, reunion rumours swirling and "just what i needed" doin the peddlin for 'circuit city' it seems to be the perfect time to put on the skinny tie, shades and tap them syndrums.

http://dreamvalley-mlp.com/cars/graphics/davidrum.jpg

http://www.creemmagazine.com/ProfilesImages/Cars_1979_02.jpg


ZionTrain (ZionTrain), Friday, 14 October 2005 10:03 (fourteen years ago) link

1st two albums=TOTAL FUCKIN CLASSIC.
everything else, not so much, if at all...

the cars=the bluieprint for just about any 'retro 80's band' today
see also- the killers, et all.

eedd, Friday, 14 October 2005 15:31 (fourteen years ago) link

I've been listening to Panorama a lot this week. Such a great great album...

Elvis Telecom (Chris Barrus), Friday, 14 October 2005 16:05 (fourteen years ago) link

just heard "Drive" on the radio, utter classic. The singles run these guys had from '78 - '87 is probably among the ten greatest chart runs in pop history. Did they falter once?

The Good Dr. Bill (The Good Dr. Bill), Friday, 14 October 2005 16:20 (fourteen years ago) link

I like the first one a lot (one of my all-time best $1 CD bin finds) - need to get the second.

o. nate (onate), Friday, 14 October 2005 16:33 (fourteen years ago) link

xpost Ferry is 73, that's only a hair younger than Ocasek.

Josh in Chicago, Tuesday, 17 September 2019 21:12 (one month ago) link

Of course Ric's fave Suicide was into (literally) synthesizing the 50's, too. But "Candy-o" is a pretty undeniably Roxy like song.

Josh in Chicago, Tuesday, 17 September 2019 21:28 (one month ago) link

We shouldn't take the Lennon quote seriously beyond what he was trying to say, "Hey, '(Just Like) Starting Over' is cool! There's contemporary stuff that sounds like it!"

TikTok to the (Alfred, Lord Sotosyn), Tuesday, 17 September 2019 21:31 (one month ago) link

it's definitely plausible that ric arrived at his vocal style by way of buddy holly and bypassed ferry. he was older than ferry after all.

I mean yeah this seems like a given? I can’t imagine why or how an American rocker who grew up in the 50s would be more indebted to Bryan Ferry than Buddy Holly

Non stop chantar (crüt), Tuesday, 17 September 2019 21:31 (one month ago) link

Possibly because he was posing? I mean, there were plenty of late 70s contemporaries of his that sounded like Buddy Holly!

Josh in Chicago, Tuesday, 17 September 2019 21:34 (one month ago) link

VM, as far as odd production moments, did you and Ric talk about:

But you kep it goin
Til the sun fell down
You kep it
[bizarre throat click]
Goin.

valet doberman (Jon not Jon), Tuesday, 17 September 2019 21:49 (one month ago) link

Well, I guess I hear Roxy more clearly than you guys…to me, it is more than plausible that he was paying attention to shit that was going on in the UK in the 70s…and after trying a few projects with Orr that failed to take off, Roxy would be a band that he would see and think "I can do an american version of that," rather than being inspired by ZZ Top or Jackson Browne (has anyone heard Milkwood?). But I see what you guys are saying, and he certainly said to me that they weren't important to him and instead talked about how much he was into post Stooges Iggy and VU.

veronica moser, Tuesday, 17 September 2019 21:53 (one month ago) link

idk if Ferry ever tried to be funny, but there are so many sly and/or goofy moments in the Cars' canonical material from the just-posted throat click to the "but she used to be mine!" kicker in "Best Friend's Girl" to all the silly videos

Οὖτις, Tuesday, 17 September 2019 21:56 (one month ago) link

no we did not discuss that…I don't think I ever noticed that bit much…

veronica moser, Tuesday, 17 September 2019 22:02 (one month ago) link

"and wasting all my time time" from "Just What I Needed" echoes that odd usage in lines from "Sister Ray" (& "Cool It Now").

Jersey Al (Albert R. Broccoli), Tuesday, 17 September 2019 22:10 (one month ago) link

I could have sworn some I read critic at the time taking issue with the "time time" thing, for some reason. I assumed it was Christgau, so looked up his reviews ... which mentions Roxy Music a couple of times. "That accentuated detachment may feel like a Roxy Music move in the first flush of studio infatuation, but schlock it up a little and this band really could turn into an American Queen," in the review of the first album. "They've always basked in the shadow of Roxy Music, too," in the review of "Shake It Up."

Josh in Chicago, Tuesday, 17 September 2019 22:20 (one month ago) link

(Heh, look at that jumble. Should have been "I could have sworn I read some critic at the time ...")

Josh in Chicago, Tuesday, 17 September 2019 22:21 (one month ago) link

before youtube, I had not seen a lot of footage of the band, so I got this Rhino DVD of them playing the first record in I guess 78 or 79, maybe it was Rockpalast? They included an interview with all five from 1999-2000, and Orr was absolutely near death but was there, answering in croaking monosyllables and ravaged by cancer, and it seemed to me to be a terrible idea to have him sit there with the other guys utterly discomfited, having to pretend that he's not about to die. Although maybe he absolutely wanted to take part in this deeply uncomfortable interview situation, and maybe those guys would have been awkward around each other anyway…

veronica moser, Tuesday, 17 September 2019 22:45 (one month ago) link

love this performance. greg going ham

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NmGkuiC9hM4

A-B-C. A-Always, B-Be, C-Chooglin (will), Tuesday, 17 September 2019 22:49 (one month ago) link

ocasek on his fallout with orr:

Ben and I had a real cold war going that lasted about 23 years. I could never really figure out exactly why, but I think there was a lot of jealousy because I wrote the songs and I got a lot of attention. And there was all kinds of weird stuff, like he said, “My girlfriend writes songs, let’s use one of those or two of those.” I said, “No, that’s not the Cars.”

fact checking cuz, Wednesday, 18 September 2019 00:17 (one month ago) link

[The Cars] was the first album I really bonded with, so as my music smugness expanded, I'm sure I had an ah-ha moment when i got to Roxy Music, and looking at the dates on the jackets, declared Ocasek modeled his sound on Roxy. For some number of decades, I've heard The Cars as an American Roxy.

Knowing his age now, it does seem possible that he was synthesizing the same approaches as the Cars took shape. He may even have heard stuff like "Street Life" and pushed it away for being just off from his vision.

Both frontmen projected such horny ennui, there had to be cross-pollination though.

I wonder if Ric and Alan Vega had convos about hiding birthdays and how to hang with the next gen.

bendy, Wednesday, 18 September 2019 15:35 (one month ago) link

I wonder if rock stars have a favored brand of black hair dye?

Josh in Chicago, Wednesday, 18 September 2019 15:37 (one month ago) link

Ric being nearly 5 years older than my dad is wild as hell. they seem like they are from two very different generations. obv both “boomers” but you know

A-B-C. A-Always, B-Be, C-Chooglin (will), Wednesday, 18 September 2019 15:40 (one month ago) link

Ocasek was born before the baby boom!

All along there is the sound of feedback (Sund4r), Wednesday, 18 September 2019 15:58 (one month ago) link

ha you’re right! it’s just wild that my parents were well past their paying attn to pop culture phase well before the Cars were a radio staple

A-B-C. A-Always, B-Be, C-Chooglin (will), Wednesday, 18 September 2019 16:16 (one month ago) link

I think The Cars was Ric's 7th band?

Jersey Al (Albert R. Broccoli), Wednesday, 18 September 2019 16:39 (one month ago) link

V much good listening for tonight, from Evan Davies at WFMU:

https://www.facebook.com/efdonFMU/photos/a.251102038244747/2724365904251669/?type=3&theater

Here's more info on the big Ric Ocasek tribute show I'm doing on WFMU tonight (9pm-midnight Eastern Time)! I'll be joined via telephone by some special guests. First up will be journalist/editor/author Annie Zaleski, who has written extensively about The Cars (see links in comments).
We'll also hear from three musicians who were in bands produced by Ric Ocasek: Paul Zone from The Fast (past guest of the show!), Debora Iyall of Romeo Void, and Danny Sage of D Generation. In between I'll be panicking about not having enough time to play all the music I want to play (spoiler: I won't have enough time). Tune in tonight at 9 Eastern/6 Pacific!

Ned Raggett, Wednesday, 18 September 2019 20:19 (one month ago) link

"But you kep it goin
Til the sun fell down
You kep it
[bizarre throat click]
Goin."

YES

| (Latham Green), Wednesday, 18 September 2019 20:27 (one month ago) link

They included an interview with all five from 1999-2000, and Orr was absolutely near death but was there, answering in croaking monosyllables and ravaged by cancer, and it seemed to me to be a terrible idea to have him sit there with the other guys utterly discomfited, having to pretend that he's not about to die.

They all look pretty old in that interview!

☮ (peace, man), Wednesday, 18 September 2019 23:03 (one month ago) link

WFMU show kicking in with "Double Life."

Ned Raggett, Thursday, 19 September 2019 01:03 (four weeks ago) link

Ha that’s the tune that’s been in my head all fucking day!

valet doberman (Jon not Jon), Thursday, 19 September 2019 01:05 (four weeks ago) link

"Touch and Go" is an interesting one for making a case about the Cars being '50s-oriented. Not sure hear it in them too much overall.

timellison, Thursday, 19 September 2019 01:10 (four weeks ago) link

have you heard perhaps an obscure little track titled "my best friend's girl"?

Larry Elleison (rogermexico.), Thursday, 19 September 2019 01:43 (four weeks ago) link

man i love efd as a person and dj and baseball fan but less so as a radio voice/interviewer

mookieproof, Thursday, 19 September 2019 01:43 (four weeks ago) link

Haha, but I'm not sure which '50s artists "My Best Friend's Girl" is supposed to sound like. Kind of hear female singing group style in the background vocals; that's about the best I can come up with (and yeah that's a '50s style lead guitar lick, but that doesn't mean that the song sounds like Carl Perkins).

timellison, Thursday, 19 September 2019 01:51 (four weeks ago) link

Really cool that Evan and Annie got to talking about the Stratford 4 and how Ric helped them get the rights to the album back -- here's the Bandcamp page for the album:

https://thestratford4.bandcamp.com/album/keep-your-crazy-head-on-straight

And Annie in her piece linked to/quoted from my piece that I did with them back in 2015 where they talk about Ric's help some more:

http://www.sfweekly.com/music/the-stratford-4-reunite-at-rickshaw-stop-tonight/

Ned Raggett, Thursday, 19 September 2019 01:53 (four weeks ago) link

“My Best Friends Girl” reminds me of “Peggy Sue” played at 0.75 speed.

They generally take those 50s melodies and slow them to a strut- the hiccups and yelps become gulps and coos.

bendy, Thursday, 19 September 2019 02:01 (four weeks ago) link

Early Cars feels so 50s in the literal words and subjects (CARS, rock and roll, my girl or someone else's girl or some girl who just showed up). Compare them to, say, Devo or Journey on either end of the classic-rock spectrum and they're more retro in the lyrics and chords, but then made new.

... (Eazy), Thursday, 19 September 2019 02:03 (four weeks ago) link

Haha, but I'm not sure which '50s artists "My Best Friend's Girl" is supposed to sound like. Kind of hear female singing group style in the background vocals; that's about the best I can come up with (and yeah that's a '50s style lead guitar lick, but that doesn't mean that the song sounds like Carl Perkins).

You mean to say you don’t know where he copped that lead guitar lick from?

Our Borad Could Be Your Trife (James Redd and the Blecchs), Thursday, 19 September 2019 02:15 (four weeks ago) link

(Hint: it was played by a well known Carl Perkins disciple)

Our Borad Could Be Your Trife (James Redd and the Blecchs), Thursday, 19 September 2019 02:15 (four weeks ago) link

I mean to say, James Redd, that the song doesn't really sound like a Carl Perkins song. (In fact...that is what I did say!)

timellison, Thursday, 19 September 2019 02:22 (four weeks ago) link

Was it played by Carl Ramone?

timellison, Thursday, 19 September 2019 02:23 (four weeks ago) link

name rings a bel... didn’t he play on “let the good times roll” (1956)?

Larry Elleison (rogermexico.), Thursday, 19 September 2019 03:36 (four weeks ago) link

Sorry to doubt you, Tim, you are correct.

Our Borad Could Be Your Trife (James Redd and the Blecchs), Thursday, 19 September 2019 09:48 (four weeks ago) link

They generally take those 50s melodies and slow them to a strut- the hiccups and yelps become gulps and coos.

This is so key to cars magic! That delicious andante tempo with the leathery palm muted rhythm guitars like walking shoes

valet doberman (Jon not Jon), Thursday, 19 September 2019 12:16 (four weeks ago) link

I did a deep dive into Foghat albums earlier this year, and came away really loving Zig Zag Walk, their "new wave sellout" and final release before breaking up. I hear quite a bit of Cars in this:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=O38S85pKmtM&list=OLAK5uy_lfXu8zvdq2o8QbdYRcy8mNUw1EOqKwksw&index=2

confusementalism (Dan Peterson), Thursday, 19 September 2019 14:17 (four weeks ago) link

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=b1o1wgxOKdw

confusementalism (Dan Peterson), Thursday, 19 September 2019 14:20 (four weeks ago) link

Reading the Ric Ocasek wiki page today has led me to the point where I'm now streaming the 1973 album by Milkwood.

I'm not quite sure which songs are sung by Ocasek and which are sung by Benjamin Orr, but my brain is completely unable to reconcile that either of these guys were ever in the Cars. It's roughly akin to Spinal Tap having an early single called "Listen to the Flower People".

Here's the first verse from Lincoln Park:

Old men playing cards
Smiling, they speak in foreign words
And every day at three
They sit and play like children after school
Oh ain’t that cool
And they lived here all their lives in Lincoln Park

enochroot, Thursday, 19 September 2019 16:55 (four weeks ago) link

that's Ben on that tune…

veronica moser, Thursday, 19 September 2019 20:27 (four weeks ago) link

man it's truly weird to hear Ocasek sing Seals and Croft shit…

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nr1tiAmOJqo

veronica moser, Thursday, 19 September 2019 20:29 (four weeks ago) link

Mustache is even weirder.

Ned Raggett, Thursday, 19 September 2019 20:35 (four weeks ago) link

two weeks pass...

Paulina remembers and reflects:

https://www.rollingstone.com/music/music-features/paulina-porizkova-ric-ocasek-894349/

Ned Raggett, Friday, 4 October 2019 23:06 (two weeks ago) link

It's somewhat improbable, but I was aware of the Dead Kennedys before The Cars and when I first saw Ocasek I thought he looked a lot like East Bay Ray.

Ray himself posted a fun note on his Instagram: "RIP Ric Ocasek. Back in the day, I walked into E.U. Wurlitzer Music in Boston and low and behold there he was. We both did a double take, we look like like brothers, and we had a lovely chat"

Elvis Telecom, Saturday, 5 October 2019 03:29 (one week ago) link

Thanks, that’s a good story. That Paulina peace is incredible from beginning to end. This part is charming:
Our oldest, Jonathan, was in preschool, and his teacher came up to me after school and said, “We had a meeting in the morning, and we were all talking about what everyone’s parents did. They said, ‘My father’s a doctor’ and things like that.” Jonathan’s answer was, “My dad goes into the basement and my mom sits in the trailer.”

Three Borads and the HOOS (James Redd and the Blecchs), Saturday, 5 October 2019 10:19 (one week ago) link

Yeah great piece. Would love to hear the recent Ocasek tracks that she was so excited about

Vinnie, Saturday, 5 October 2019 13:24 (one week ago) link


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