COMMENTS: This is a member of  that rarest of breeds: a novelty song that sticks.  Though I was immediately stuck on the song's hooks and dark humor, my natural reaction was to discount them.  However, I noticed eventually that the song was still kicking my ass a couple of years later, and also that it kicked ass on almost everyone who heard it.

The lyrics are a series of vignettes of messed up suburbanites, such as the man who takes off his clothes and starts masturbating in a train full of commuters - explaining all the while "In my country, this is definitely not offensive."  Thompson is a Muslim, and one interpretation has it that this song is his reaction to all the brouhaha over the fatwa against Salman Rushdie, as if The Satanic Verses amounted to the same thing and was of course offensive no matter what the guy says to try to excuse it.  This explanation almost makes sense.

The thing that really makes it stick, though, is the instrumental jam built onto the verses.  The record flies along on a taut, quickly paced jam built on some psycho stand-up bass runs combined with maracas and repeated snare drum rolls that would seem frantic if they were not so perfect and precisely controlled.  The whole thing is topped off with some weird guitar chords pulsing along like a telegraph.  The whole thing comes off sounding almost like jazz, probably more because of the pure sophistication than anything else.  This jams like a bitch even if the novelty has worn off the words - which it won't.

The other part of the song is the chorus, which is completely different musically.  It is a simple little "happy neighbors" theme that sounds like a parody of Fred Rogers.  It has just the simplest cheesy electric piano chords and rhythms for accompaniment, stopping the groove cold.  This is probably mostly what made me want to discount the whole record, but I have come to appreciate the chorus.  It sets up a good contrast to the verses, and helps to cleanse the palette, and it completes the thought, offering two interpretations of the same phenomenon.

So come on in, for it is a beautiful day in the neighborhood.  Feels like home to me.


DVD Review: Tony Palmer's Film of Fairport Convention & Matthews Southern Comfort


Holla Back!

Richard Thompson

Music Sustains the Soul

More Things Log

More Things Home



Link Soup
morethings master photo gallery index MP3 new album releases lyrics sammy davis little richard photos buddy holly pictures fats domino images chuck berry pictures 01/ 02/ 03/ 04/ 05/ 06/ 07/ 08/ 09/ 10/ 11/ 12/ 01/ 02/ 03/ 04/ 05/ 06/ 07/ 08/ 09/ 10/ 11/ 12/ 01/ 02/ 03/ 04/ 05/ 06/ 07/ 08/ 09/ 10/ 11/ 12/ 01/02/  03/ 04/ 05/ 06/ 07/ 08/ 09/ 10/ 11/ 12 01/ 02/ 03/ 04/ 05/ 06/ 07/ 08/ 09/ 10/ 11/  12/01/ 02/ 03/ 04/ 05/ 06/ 07/ 08/ 09/ 10/  11/  12/08/ 09/ 10/ 11/ 12/ la 24 lucille ball images james blunt photos clint eastwood pictures lena horne images team america pictures robert mitchum photos bruce springsteen pictures  mariah carey pictures ann coulter photos george clooney images  loretta lynn pictures beatles pictures white stripes pictures andy griffith pictures kill bill pictures beverly hillbillies pictures robin williams frank zappa pictures jerry lee lewis pictures richard pryor photos june carter johnny cash pictures vic mackey shield pictures u2 photos four seasons images james cagney images elvis presley pictures country music blog dolly parton pictures olsen twins photos tom petty photos tori amos pictures joaquin phoenix images David Bowie photos Quills movie images reese witherspoon pictures rolling stones photos fiona apple images kim novak images ray charles photos marx brothers pictures prince rogers nelson pictures blazing saddles images  sinead o'connor images  eddie murphy photos aretha franklin photos south park  pictures homer simpson images bob dylan pictures elizabeth taylor photos drawn together images saturday night live pictures hee haw pictures james brown images pete townshend photos tina turner pictures dixie chicks photos margaret thatcher photos guns n roses pictures paula abdul pictures jodie foster photos amy winehouse eminem frank sinatra photos van halen images satan blondie photos joni mitchell pictures merle haggard images rocky horror pictures



More Things server stats