Monday, June 30, 2014

Records To Play on Canada Day!

Since Canada Day is July 1st, I decided to pick through my blog queue and find some records to represent our Country! Yes, it was a doomed venture from the beginning because it seems that every song representing Canada seems to be sub-par (and that includes our national anthem). We just can't seem to write cool songs about our homeland which is quite evident in two of the four records I'm featuring here.

So won't you join me as we step into the home and native land of shitty patriotic songs, boring Canadian history, and airport music.

The Mennonite Children's Choir - They All Call It Canada

I'm glad this is not our national anthem. It's too long and I can't understand half the words, mainly because the children singing on here were taught to over-exaggerate their Canadian accents. Hooray for CannyDaah!

It's still a shitty song, so I'll forgive you for skipping over it.

Listen to They All Call It Canada

Sounds of Canada

Canadian history is boring as fuck, and this record helps drive that point home. Fortunately for us, this isn't just a record documenting Canadian history. It's a record of Canadian sound effects and audio clips.

Although I haven't been to our city's library in decades, the tapes, records and videos I've come across that previously belonged to the library are lame, stupid, or just flat out dumpster food. I'm not sure what the purpose of this record was. Perhaps you were supposed to buy it, mail it to someone in a different country, and they would excitedly opened the envelope to discover a totally destroyed 7" record because the postal system likes to smash the piss out of the mail before it arrives to its destination.

I've joined side one and two into a single 17 minute MP3 file. It's kinda stale, but if you want to know what Canadian atmosphere sounds like, this may help deter you from visiting us.

Listen to Sounds of Canada

T.B.A. - Summer In Canada

If you can't figure out what to name your band, just stamp it with "T.B.A." Seriously, how can Doug Riley write and compose a completely useless song, and then avoid coming up with a band name? The poor singers will never get the recognition they deserve. What a way to ruin a legacy. I'm also pretty sure I have a cassette of Doug Riley somewhere in my massive, overflowing box of bloggable cassettes, but I cannot seem to find it at this very moment.

I don't think this song was meant to be an enjoyable patriotic song. It sounds more like a radio station bumper to fill dead space while the disc jockey (who's a total slacker at his job) queued up the next record. So for all you slackers in the Canadian broadcasting field, feel free to use this song to stab summery joy into the ears of your listeners!

Listen to Summer In Canada

Flight Time - An Air Canada Introduction to Boarding Music

In the few times I've flown, I've NEVER paid attention to the fact that there's music playing while I'm getting on the plane. Nevertheless, this is a fun sampler of music that was playing in Canadian airports in 1979. You're not going to find any Led Zeppelin, Black Sabbath, or Deep Purple here. Satanic bands like those are NOT allowed on the airport speakers. Instead, we have a selection of (mostly) soft 70s pop music that will ensure you remain calm while airport security rapes and cavity searches you for guns, knives, cocaine, and cigarette lighters.

This is basically elevator music performed by a bunch of unknowns. Here are some of the songs I was able to pick out while listening to this record (with a few being heavily disco-fied)...

Day Tripper
Theme from a Summer Place
Music Box Dancer (the actual Frank Mills version)
Tie A Yellow Ribbon Round The Old Oak Tree
Raindrops Keep Falling On My Head
Seasons In The Sun
The Entertainer
Nadia's Theme
I Just Can't Help Believing
Georgy Girl
Nobody Does It Better
Suicide Is Painless

Personally, I would probably be more nervous during my flight after hearing the Theme from MASH while boarding the plane. The fear-induced scars of wondering "IS THIS PLANE GOING TO GET SHOT DOWN" would pave the way for a lifetime of intense therapy.

Both sides have different music, and side two has the commentary in French.

Listen to Side 1
Listen to Side 2

And that's it! I hope you have a spectacular Canada Day, regardless of what country you live in.

Tuesday, June 24, 2014

I Hope You Guys Don't Like The Beatles

Today, I'm reviewing some Beatles tribute albums! These things are fairly difficult to find because there are some very avid collectors of them (WHY???) They're certainly not as plentiful as the Elvis ones. Nevertheless, I've got three of them here. George, John, and Linda are all spinning in their graves. However, I think Linda is spinning for reasons other than the existence of butchered Beatles songs.

The Beatles - Theology

The Beatles were an amazing orchestra who have many instrumental hits such as "Onward, Christian Soldiers", "Corpus Christi", and "Since Jesus / Amazing Grace". At least that's what I understand from this Beatles compilation. Too bad it isn't even a compilation. I guess the Salvation Army figured they'll be able to convert the average Satan-Worshipping Beatles fan over to a Christian way of life by mixing religion with the fab four. With the exception of writing credits in the booklet, there is NOTHING on the CD that tells you this isn't The Beatles, nor does it tell you who the orchestra is. However, the internet CDDB identifies the artist as The Norridge Citadel Band, but I have no desire to check and see if that's accurate. In my opinion, a more appropriate name for these guys would be "The Porridge Shitasmell Band". They really stink!

The inlay of the CD case has a picture of Jesus singing a Beatles hymn:

Anyway, I hope you enjoy this song because I sure didn't.

Listen to "Help, I Need Somebody"

In The Style of Beatles

This is a Fantastic F 8-track. I don't need to tell you how terrible it is since I've reviewed Fantastic F's crap on here before. First of all, their British accents are Canadian accents. Second, the guy at the mastering plant turned the volume all the way up when he copied the tapes, so they're a bit distorted. Third, look at the cover. Is that supposed to be a beetle? It certainly isn't Ringo Starr. It COULD be John Lennon as drawn by Yoko Ono. Fourth, they decided to try and emulate the 1960s "Stereo Sound" and failed miserably. Old Beatles recordings generally had vocals in one channel, instruments in the other. I don't know what they did here, but the mix is similar to splitting a drinking glass with a sledgehammer. Shit's all over the place.

Even though all the songs range on various levels of terribleness, I don't think it's any surprise that Yellow Submarine is the most interesting track on here. For those of you who've been on a submarine, you'll recognize the familiar sounds of clucking chickens and some guy hocking a loogie. I think there's a turkey gobbling in the mix as well. Along with this accurate depiction of sea life, I've put up the entire album for your downloading and evaluating pleasure. Enjoy!

Listen to Yellow Submarine!

Download the entire album!

The biggest mystery surrounding this album... Why do these Canadians attempting British accents fail miserably on the French part in "Michelle"? French is a mandatory language in parts of Canada, and especially in Ontario which is where the Fantastic F 8-track plant was located!

Happy Kids - All You Need Is Kids

I have to admit that I find a lot of The Beatles' songs a bit childish. "Hello, Goodbye", "Octopus's Garden", "Ob-la-di, Ob-la-da", "Revolution #9", and lots more sound like something you'd find on a Sharon, Lois & Bram album. But just because their songs are a bit childish, it doesn't mean children should sing them.

This tape is pretty bad. They tried to incorporate a storyline about some character named "Ob-La-Di" who came from a Beatles record (huh?) and teaches Beatles songs to a pack of bored children. It's unfortunate that Ob-La-Di didn't teach these children how to sing first. Most of the instrumentation was likely done on a Casio keyboard.

Half of the songs are almost tolerable, and the other half will make you cry. This isn't just bad, it's dead-fetus-covered-in-platypus-vomit bad. The creators of this album could have redeemed themselves if they used the song "Why Don't We Do It In The Road".

I would have put the entire thing up for downloading, but I honestly couldn't stand the thought of listening to this garbage twice. One song is already too much to bear.

Listen to Can't Buy Me Love


I hope you enjoyed my review on the Fab 4. Too bad this crap wasn't even close to "fab". On behalf of all the "artists" represented in this entry, I apologize.

Friday, June 13, 2014

Website Review: Music Nations Network

This evening, I sat down at the computer to figure out what kind of fun stuff I can pack into the next blog entry. Before I did that, I checked my email and noticed that I had a message in my Youtube inbox from Music Nations Network. One of my all-time twisted dreams is to have my own TV channel broadcasting nothing but bizarre, public access-ish goodness. Perhaps this was going to be a step in the right direction! My dreams were flashing before my eyes of being a program manager of the worst TV shows in the universe!

But I'm skeptical. I'm always so fucking skeptical when my dreams are about to come true. So I went and checked out their website. The first thing I noticed is that they mention the weather. Then I realized it wasn't intentional. I realized it was a typo. Then I realized more typos...

Now I'm usually a pretty forgiving guy. Hell, I keep giving Teo Mance chances to showcase a GOOD recording on this blog, so why not give these guys the same consideration? I decided to chat with their "knowlegable, helpful dedicated fast suppoort team" and ask them a few questions.

I got kicked out of chat while I was busy taking screenshots of the conversation, but they nicely offered a transcript for me to paste here for your enjoyment!

[6/13/2014 6:55:26 PM] Ben joined the chat

[6/13/2014 6:55:27 PM] Ben said:
I have lots of questions...

[6/13/2014 6:55:40 PM] Music Nations Network - Support joined the chat

[6/13/2014 6:55:47 PM] Music Nations Network - Support said:
Hi! How may I help you?

[6/13/2014 6:56:21 PM] Ben said:
Besides getting paid, what other kinds of benefits do I get by joining?

[6/13/2014 6:58:16 PM] Music Nations Network - Support said:
You can see the benefits here

[6/13/2014 7:00:30 PM] Ben said:
My main outlet for my content is my blog, which gets a large portion of it's traffic from youtube. How will joining a network help gain exposure to my blog?

[6/13/2014 7:01:26 PM] Music Nations Network - Support said:
We will as much as feasible possible, promote your videos and generate revenue including revenue on top of the YouTube revenue by using (parts of) your content. When we do so, we will always mention you in the credits and/or use annotations linking to your channel aimed at building up traffic to your channel and growing your subscriber base.

[6/13/2014 7:02:22 PM] Ben said:
Can you show me an example of a network?

[6/13/2014 7:02:55 PM] Music Nations Network - Support said:
I don't have an example. kindly email to request for one.

[6/13/2014 7:06:59 PM] Ben said:
So is your job to strictly copy and paste content from the website?

[6/13/2014 7:07:41 PM] Music Nations Network - Support said:
I'n sorry but I only have limited access

[6/13/2014 7:07:54 PM] Music Nations Network - Support said:
I'm sorry but I only have limited access

[6/13/2014 7:09:39 PM] Music Nations Network - Support said:
Hi! Are you there? I may need to end this chat as I don't have any response from you. Thank you.

So, here is an open letter to the Music Nations Network...

Dear MNN,

Thank you for taking an interest in my highly successful Youtube videos. However, I must decline your offer to pay me. I'm terrified that you may neglect to pay me due to errors on your website and/or contract which legally require me to show terrible ads on my videos, and legally clear you of having to pay me anything.

Your "knowlegable, helpful dedicated fast suppoort team" was not knowledgeable, helpful, nor supportive. I honestly wouldn't be surprised if the "Ctrl", "C" and "V" keys on their keyboards have been worn down to the rubber pads. Please hire some unsuccessfully aborted fetuses to replace your current staff.

Yours in Christ,