Monday, September 29, 2014

Misfits/Sixteen Blue

DT and I were speaking recently of the various ties between bands, influences of older artists on younger, as well as contemporaneous artists sometimes symbiotic relationships.

I've been in a Kinks mood recently, and I'm always in a Replacements mood, which may be why, upon hearing this song for the first time in 20+ years, it sounded so clearly proto-'Mats.

Tell me that doesn't sound like the blueprint for this.

From the lyrical thrust to the arrangement down to the melody to even the playing, with its pop elegance juxtaposed against a country background; I mean, even the first few seconds of each sound like, at most, first cousins—appropriate, given the genetic bonds at the heart of each bands' genesis.

It's no coincidence that the Replacements would bear more than a few similarities to the Kinks: both were fronted by amazing lyricists but massively aided and abetted by a sometimes unheralded group of musicians with whom they grew up. Both had aspirations far beyond "mere" rock and roll, but Cole Porter be damned, neither could help but return to balls to the wall rock again and again.

Paul Westerberg once talked about how maybe some bands had done the ballads better, and maybe some had done the hard rock better, but that no band had ever done them both as well as the Replacements. As a diehard fan, I find it hard to entirely disagree...but when listening to the Kinks it's hard to entirely buy in, either.

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