Just as a warmup for the upcoming writing on Adam Green because of his new shiny album and book, let me mention the two little pre-acquisitions I made at iTMS, the two ‘B-Sides’ from the Jessica EP:
The first song is the Beach Boys’ Kokomo. Not being a big Beach Boys fan myself, I had of course been aware of that melody and song so far, but didn’t pay too much attention. And now I’ve actually listened to it and quite liked it. At least it stuck in my head all day and I’ve been mumbling
Key Largo, Montego, Jamaica, Kokomo all day without a single reference to my Powerbook’s intestines. (I’d love to make a map, but I don’t know of any reasonably good quality, well indexed and complete digital map to use for this. The one on the Britannica CD is crap, the travel websites are as well, and even my analogue school atlas doesn’t help with all the destinations here.)
The other song/s on that EP is/are Don’t Smoke/Bronx Zoo. Probably one of the very few songs I bought on iTMS without listening to it first. And while I appreciate all the low-fi stuff and I really love the old Moldy Peaches songs, I found this song absolutely appalling. And that’s not because it’s against smoking. So it’s one of the very few songs in my iTunes library with the questionable honour of being unchecked now.
Not to go cultist on you, but if you found “Kokomo” interesting, you might want to tackle other parts of the Beach Boys catalogue with open ears. I didn’t give them a chance until relatively recently (late ’90s), because in my mind I always associated them with those embarassing fat-bald-guys-in-an-ampitheatre nostalgia tours Mike Love led in the 70s and 80’s. Then one day I listened (I mean really listened) to “Good Vibrations”, which is, well, really, perfect (along with “In My Room” and “God Only Knows” and….) That got me interested in hearing Pet Sounds which kept making those lists of “the best pop albums ever” but which I had never heard. I picked it up used and fell in love with it.
I had a short encounter with that old Beach Boys stuff when everybody started talking about the SMILE thing. I was quite impressed by some songs but didn’t pursue it any further. Particularly with music that’s been around longer than myself I always find it hard to judge whether it’s good or I’ve just grown up with it.
This may be worth further investigation, though.