Me, Myself, and iPod 5/5/10: Lolene must be stopped

esd ipod

Yep, it’s community service week at Me, Myself and iPod, where I launch a full-scale attack on a seemingly innocuous pop singer. What makes this singer so much more offensive than the gaggle of singers just like her? You’ll see.

Oh Mercy – Can’t Fight It
These guys are quickly becoming the house band of Me, Myself and iPod, as this is the second song from their debut album Privileged Woes that we’ve highlighted to date. (You can find the other song, “Lay Everything on Me,” here.) We even interviewed the band’s lead singer Alexander Gow a couple weeks ago. Nice kid, and he’s working with Mitchell Froom on their second record. If the mention of Froom’s name perked up your ears, that’s probably because you like Crowded House, and if you like them, you’ll probably like these guys, too.

The Knocks – Blackout
Fans of Chromeo will dig this retro slice of ’70s funk. If the Trammps were around today, they might sound like this.

The Protomen – Light Up the Night
The synths! The lead singer with a tremolo-laden tenor! The synthetic drums! All this song is missing is a montage of Sylvester Stallone working out in the wilderness as he prepares to dethrone the world champion…something or other.

Justine Bennett – Heavy Feeling
Joni Mitchell covering “Losing My Religion”? Yeah, that’ll work.

Alcoholic Faith Mission – My Eyes to See
Always a tricky thing to put any word referencing booze in your band name – what if one of its members has to go to rehab? – but this nifty little tune sounds like Polyphonic Spree crossed with Sunny Day Sets Fire. Big, catchy, and a little dark.

Hunter Valentine – The Stalker
Girl power! This all-girl trio – from Brooklyn, of course – kicks some serious tail. Plus, they serve as a good antidote to the toxic mess that follows.

Lolene – Rich (Fake It Til You Make It)
And here we…go.

Listen, I know that music is about rebellion, blowing off steam, getting a little crazy, blah blah blah. But look at this chorus:

I talk like I’m rich, I walk like I’m rich
I spend like I’m rich, but I ain’t got no money
I think like I’m rich, I drink like I’m rich
I live like I’m rich / Hey hey, Hollywood
Fake it til I make it, fake it til I make it

You have got to be fucking kidding me.

I know that the kiddos are dazzled by celebrity culture, and how even Asian leprechaun attention whores and New Jersey dropouts can be considered “stars” in some warped definition of the word. But this whole ‘act like you’re rolling in dough’ thing is just irresponsible. So you’re maxing out your credit cards in order to give off the impression that you’re fabulous. I reiterate: you’re putting on a show for people who don’t know you, in the hopes that…what, exactly? Someone will make a star out of you because you’re living the lifestyle? (Not life, mind you, but lifestyle.) What happens when it doesn’t work out? You’re bankrupt, both literally and figuratively.

Here’s the thing, kids: fame ain’t all it’s cracked up to be. It is not the end-all-be-all of life, the ultimate goal. And most of the people who are famous, the movie stars, the athletes, they didn’t make it by faking it – they worked really, really hard to get where they are. They didn’t just try to dazzle the bouncers with charm (and if that doesn’t work, a blowjob) in order to get VIP treatment. Our little friend Lolene here is applying for what I call a Fake Celebrity card, the people who are discussed in gossip mags and arrange photo ops with the paparazzi, but will never be invited to George Clooney’s house, or even attend the same parties he goes to. It’s the Siberia of celebritydom. Who in their right minds would want to live there?

So if I find this so offensive, you ask, why am I offering the song for download? Because, if everyone who wants the song downloads it for free, then she won’t make any money from it, thus forcing her to continue to fake it without ever making it. This song sets a bad example, and there are already too many people who think that your lifestyle is more important than your life. The idea of someone actually becoming famous by writing a song about being desperate for fame, well, this might cause time and space to fold on itself. Time to grow up, kids. Get a job, and join the rest of us in the real world.

The really weird part about all this is that Lolene is British. You’d think she’d have more sense than this. I guess there are fame whores all around the world.


Steal This Song: Oh Mercy, “Lay Everything on Me”

There are few ways to get our attention faster than comparing an artist to Neil Finn. It’s a double-edged sword, though; there are scores of artists who try to emulate Finn brothers Neil and Tim, but almost none of them succeed in replicating his signature blend of rich melodcism with a healthy dose of neurosis. Still, when someone dares to make the comparison, we listen.

And, if the song turns out to sound more like the Go-Betweens than the Finn Brothers, we listen again. And again.

oh mercy

Alexander Gow and Tom Savage. The new McLennan and Forster?

“Lay Everything on Me,” the first single from Melbourne quartet Oh Mercy, feels like a lost track from 1987, the kind of thing that would have received heavy airplay in the early days of 120 Minutes. Think the Immaculate Fools, Danny Wilson, the aforementioned Go-Betweens, or if you want a modern-day comparison, Jupiter One. It’s insanely melodic guitar pop, with a simple, driving drum beat (and lots of cowbell) and a bare-bones scratch guitar line. But this is no retro hipster douchebag band cashing in on a movement; they simply favor melody over an ironic pose or sonic gimmicks – as it should me, damn it.

The band’s debut album, Priviledged Woes, is set to drop in the States soon, and after a dozen spins of this song and a quick glance of the songs on their MySpace page (which features a nifty cover of the Cardigans’ “Lovefool” that they recorded for an Australian radio station), it can’t come soon enough.

Oh Mercy – Lay Everything on Me


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