The Bad Egg – Backspin
Genre: Blues, Alternative Rock
Real musicians were up in arms when DJs found a way to employ a band using a bunch of records and turntables. Not only were these sounds chosen by one person, ensuring a singular vision, but this virtual band was not one that would complain, or ask for pay rises.
Naturally, the scene created around the culture of sampling had its drawbacks. For a while, terrific musicians who’d acted worked their way to play their instruments proficiently were out of a job. But, then, professional weirdos with a vision began applying the same scatterbrain attitude towards pop music. Their methods were, usually, to sample ideas by playing those themselves, rewriting ideas, and stitching them together in new exciting ways. Out of these, none was better or more praised than boy-wonder Beck.
Swiss act The Bad Egg channels Beck at his wackiest on Backspin. Just like any potent potion, there are glimpses and traces of other powerful ingredients. There’s blues caught in the wheels of this alt-rock track, as well as a gravelly voice reminiscent of Elvis Costello. If you map out your future listens by references, there’s no better place to start than here.
WellBad – Young
Genre: Art Rock, Indie Rock, Alternative Rock
Bill Hicks reckoned we owed all of the great music that has ever been done since the dawn of the 50s on highly potent chemicals. While, no doubt, this may have played a part, I think the answer is even more simple than that. We owe the great music on weirdos being involved.
From Howlin’ Wolf to Jerry Lee Lewis, from Captain Beefheart to Ozzy Osbourne, we’ve had few people destined to hold steady jobs or become responsible members of society who ended up playing rock. Now, but just happens when you take those unhinged personalities and put them in a modern, pop context.
WellBad produces a strong blues/art-rock hybrid on Young, a song complete with a highly colourful music video and the kind of maniacal energy that even Don Van Vliet might find charming. If you ever hoped that someone would reimagine Trout Mask Replica as an album complete with big pop hooks instead of endless dissonance, you might be in luck and would need to thank the weirdos.