Life Post Rapture (It’s Not Just The Pious Who Are Bummed)

May 26, 2011

Since that whole Rapture dealio surprisingly fizzled, I can’t help but think that the real losers were the non-pants wearing inhibitants of this planet.

Imagine how elated the animal kingdom would have been had several hundred million humans simply vanished.

I picture camels, cockatoos, coyotes – all creatures great and small – breaking into song and dance like cartoon characters at the idea of fewer of us humans mucking up the scene.

Word would obviously be spread by the whales as they are able to communicate to all of the world’s oceans through their song. I know this because Charlotte Rampling’s professor character said so in Orca.

(I feel that a Dino De Laurentiis’ flick I saw as a kid at the drive-in in 1977 is a credible source for ichthyological information)

I thought that Prof. Rampling also told the hungover college kids something about some philosopher who had speculated that God would return to earth as a whale.

Maybe The Old Fellow Who Cried Judgment Day needs to factor that concept into his calculations.

In the meantime, the animals no doubt have champagne on ice. Here are four animal songs…

The Judybats – Animal Farm
from Down In The Shacks Where The Satellite Dishes Grow

I’ve stumbled across songs from Southern jangle rockers The Judybats twice of late as I’ve looked for songs to post and I’m surprised that its taken me nearly twenty years to discover them.

(especially since I’ve had Down In The Shacks Where The Satellite Dishes Grow since it was released in ’92 when I snagged a promo copy)

Better late than never, though, and the charming Animal Farm is not only a cover of a song by The Kinks, but it’s nowhere near as dystopian as the classic novel of the same name.

Talking Heads – Animals
from Fear Of Music

One of my high school buddies was a rabid fan of Talking Heads, so I was familiar with the band’s catalog before the mainstream success of the stellar Burning Down The House and its parent album Speaking In Tongues.

I dig The Heads and own a good chunk of the band’s catalog, but there is a portion of their output that is difficult to embrace. If I had to choose one Talking Heads’ album, though, I would likely opt for the textured Fear Of Music.

Somehow I’d forgotten about the delightfully paranoid Animalson which David Byrne expresses his great distrust of the titular creatures – “I know the animals are laughing at us” – and concern that, since “they’re living on nuts and berries” and “they say they don’t need money,” “they’re setting a bad example.”

(damned socialist animals!)

The Fixx – Calm Animals
from Calm Animals

I’ve long liked the idea of The Fixx more than the actual band and much of their music. Their albums were uneven and I didn’t like One Thing Leads To Another even before it got played into the ground in the autumn of ’83.

But, when things truly jelled, The Fixx had some killer tracks – Red Skies, Saved By Zero, Secret Separation – and, listening to it for the first time in years, the more rocking Calm Animals is pretty cool.

Def Leppard – Animal
from Hysteria

It’s Def Leppard, man. I mean, once we’re gone, the animals are certainly going to have a major blowout and why wouldn’t they throw on some Def Leppard?

There’s A Place In This World (and whatever world which might or might not come next) For A Gambler

August 21, 2008

…not that I know much about gambling beyond some basic things nor engaged in much gambling. I do know that it is apparently possible to place a bet on pretty much anything. So, I thought, why not place wagers on the afterlife?

You could bet your entire life savings as, if there turns out of be no afterlife, no one could collect and no one would be the wiser. Make it interesting and have the wagers be on possible outcomes.

“Put me down for ten grand on the likelihood of Bea Arthur being some bar wench in the afterlife at six to one.”

If you get a bit over rambunctious in Valhalla and Bea is the one tossing your ass, you’d collect a cool $60,000.

Then, I realized that, unless the afterlife takes place in a casino (which might be some folks’ idea of heaven), there might not be a need for ducats. If there was, though, you’d have the chance to start out with wads of cash – snack money.

Talking Heads – Heaven
Quirky, brainy and surprisingly funky, but pretty isn’t a word that comes to my mind when I think of The Heads. Heaven is pretty, though. It’s a very soothing song and Fear Of Music (from whence it came) is likely my favorite record of theirs – I Zimbra, Mind, Life During Wartime, and Heaven.

Curve – No Escape From Heaven
I loved Curve’s sound from the first time I heard them on their debut Doppelganger. At times edgy and cacophonous, there’s always a melody underneath the layers of guitars and effects – and Toni Halliday provides some provocative vocals.

Bob Dylan – Knockin’ On Heaven’s Door
Paloma has prodded me to devote an entire entry to Mr. Zimmerman. Maybe. Anyhow, Knockin’ On Heaven’s Door is a song I never tire of hearing. There’s just something about it and it’s vibe of resignation. I know it was from the movie Pat Garrett & Billy The Kid, but I’m not certain if Dylan actually appeared in it (I’m thinking he did).

Whale – Born To Raise Hell
Whale. I really expected great things of them from the moment I first heard Hobo Humpin’ Slobo Babe. They were Swedish, the lead singer wore braces and, this song, was from their debut, We Care, which featured Tricky. Born To Raise Hell makes me think of Bjork fronting a Motorhead cover band.

I don’t believe that I ever heard their second (and last?) album, but I do remember thinking its title – All Disco Dance Must End In Broken Bones – was brilliantly twisted. Then, they just vanished.

The Clash – Straight To Hell
One of my favorite Clash songs and I suddenly realize that I don’t recall seeing any Clash on vinyl since Paloma and I have been buying albums.

Pink Floyd – Run Like Hell
I spoke with Roger Waters once on the program Rockline – a weekly call-in show on Monday nights in the ’80s. As I remember, it was a national broadcast in the US and maybe even stations in Canada. Whatever its reach, it afforded me the opportunity to – in a deer-in-the-headlights moment – call Roger Waters “Rog” (as though we were long-time drinking buddies) before a very sizable audience.