Wednesday, July 29, 2009

May the Schwarz Be With You!

Okay, this one is seriously wonderful -- none of that Banana Splits, I'm-being-partly-ironic crap.

From 1972, here's the great Brinsley Schwarz and their instantly addictive "Unknown Number." Written and sung by the pre-irony Nick Lowe on their ace Silver Pistol album.

The reason it sounds a little roughhewn is that it was recorded, as you may be able to glean from the album cover, at home. The Brinsleys (with new 2nd guitarist Ian Gomm) had retreated to a communal house (inspired by you know who) to lick their wounds after their first two studio albums bombed in the midst of one of the most disastrous live hypes in rock history (the details are here). Their plan: Move a mobile 24-track recording machine into their living room and try to make music on a slightly more intimate scale.

It worked, as you can hear from this song, although it didn't translate into record sales. In any case, this is Lowe chanelling Buddy Holly's "Words of Love," I think, and it's just hauntingly lovely.


steve simels said...

Note to self: Obscure early pub rock songs even less of a crowd pleaser than obscure 80s synth pop tunes now in palm pilot commercials.

TMink said...

Hey pal, I can't get it to play!

Trey - who has two Brinsley records

steve simels said...

Trey -- it's something on divshare's end. Happens from time to time -- check back in a while and it should be playable.

Danny Guam said...

Nice tight clean pop song.

Very nice vocal harmonies.

Gotta good beat, easy to dance to:

give it a 78.

Anonymous said...

My favorite Brimsley Schwarz album. They were real good!

And you turned me on to them Steve.


Kevin said...

Did you ever hear The Shake Shake's "You Can Run"? I used to have the 45. GREAT single. I'd love to hear it again. Has it ever made it to a compilation?

dave™© said...

Remember how I said I saw the Banana Splits "live"? I also saw Ian Gomm live circa 1979. And I got in "free" - I was on the record company weasel guest list!