Wednesday, February 2, 2011

The Bangles - "All Over The Place"

Today,   I present to you the Bangles.  Like all good bands should do, they called it a day on their third record (although they’ve gotten back together in the double 0’s but I’m going to pretend that didn’t happen) and while most people are aware of the second (A Different Light) and third (Everything) records, the ones with their top ten hits written by professional songwriters, they mostly aren’t aware that before that they released an album called “All Over the Place” filled with songs they mostly wrote themselves, mostly by guitarist Vickie Petterson.  The sound wasn’t as polished and was more straight up garage rock with a sixties influence.  Of course it’s the early eighties so the songs are a bit cleaner and not as sloppily played as a lot of more recent indie bands but what they’ve recorded seems to be what a lot of indie-pop bands have attempted to achieve throughout the 90’s and 00’s.  And they do it with a better sense of melody and harmony than a majority if not all of them.  I just listened back to Lush & especially on their last record LoveLife, the sound they were heading toward can easily be related to the songs from “All Over the Place”. 

Like the Mission UK, this was another album I purchased from the cheapies in the local PX (military base equivalent of wal-mart) and at the time, I was just getting into music that wasn’t metal…I blame this on Faith No More and to an extent the Cure but really that FNM “Introduce Yourself” album was the gateway and I had heard a few of the non-hit tracks from A Different Light and thought I’d check out the Bangles more thoroughly. If you know what I mean.  For some reason the opening track reminds me of Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles too, maybe I had just discovered them at the same time.  Four girls in a band,  four mutant turtles in the sewer.  It makes sense.

EDIT:  My judgement on this record has changed since i initially posted this.  My judgement was that although it was fantastic indie pop, indie pop just wasn't my thing.   However since then i've listened to this album quite a bit and think despite the corny lyrics it's a fantastic record.  I also updated the video to more accurately fit what they were sounding like back then.

Another thing about the 80’s.   Holy Crap are they embarrassing… instead of posting the actual videos, here's a live bootleg from a concert in 82 playing "Tell Me" also worth checking out is the live version of "Dover Beach" from the same era.  It's kind of sad actually to see what they came from and what happened to them after being filtered through  80's Major Label fuckery (the corny studio musicians the producer brought in for the next two records really take a toll on the more raw rock n rolling they were capable of and also resulted in them being dismissed as a pop band in the ranks with Bobby Brown, Madonna etc. . .)

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