Monday, March 6, 2017

Can't Stop the Music - Village People

It's March, and I have been doing this now for 3 months, so let's keep up the steam and keep on going with this classic. When you find out the history of this record, its very funny that this is what its titled. This is the sixth studio release, if you include the Sleazy half of Live and Sleazy. This is a soundtrack to the movie of the same name, titled after the production company Can't Stop Productions. This movie is, how can I put it, ridiculous. This is also the first record not to feature original lead singer Victor Willis. Though he did write the words to Milkshake, Magic Night and obviously the previously released YMCA.
  1. Can't Stop The Music: The first track, which also happens to be the title track and the last in the movie (big finale). The biggest problem is this song is too long in the movie, and while is catchy, it goes a little too long. As catchy as In-A-Gadda-Da-Vida is the middle percussion solo goes a little too long, nothing really happens. This is much of the same..... In the film at least.  It wasn't until I heard the full version on its own that I really "got it". Then I realized, this song is actually not half bad. It's kind of good, which is odd, but it's good. Like I can't listen to the album 3 minute edit, I need all 7 minutes of it baby. Really it's much like hearing an edited version of Love to Love You, Supernature or any extended cut that you really need all 10+ minutes of. The song is very tastefully arranged, has some great vocals and is one of the best disco songs I have heard. It's very fun, even though I can sing In the Navy in the beginning, and you can dance to it. Wasn't that the purpose of disco? Besides appealing to Gay men. The bass on the song also tops what most rock bands could ever dream of playing. It's just I wish there was more variation. Not to say there isn't, but if I'm not in the mood the longer instrumental part can be a bit grating. It was for the review, but literally ever over time I listen and dance in the car it goes by so fucking fast. Maybe it's because I have to sit and listen and can't move you know. Fighting the natural order of the song. But at the end of the day I feel like an injustice was done, it's like an edited version of a song [on the album]. This isn't Let's Go Crazy, we need the whole thing. Plus it doesn't kill the momentum of the song having the whole thing either.
  2. Samantha by David London: With an introduction that reminds me of My Sharona, and a glam rock inspired by a Rocky Horror, this song isn't anything to rave about. Well maybe more along the lines of a chorus off the more popular Styx songs. It makes me smile a bit because of that, but they did it better than David London. This song is pretty easy to take, but as easy as it is to hear it is to forget. Like I forgot about it in between listens.
  3. Give Me A Break by The Ritchie Family: This tune isn't half bad, but there is something that keeps me from loving or wanting to revisit this track. I couldn't wrap my finger around it until listen number 3 that I understood. That's when I realized it wasn't that great of a song. I mean there are better songs on the album, why does this group have to be on the album. Really it's a pretty boring song. I mean I feel like it's kind of trying to evoke other songs that I think are better. Some songs include Bad Girls, My Prerogative (I know that's from 1989) and throw in kind of generic disco sounds. The bass also reminds me at one point of Good Times. For whatever reason.
  4. Liberation: As much as I feel this should be looked at as campy and just clearly a pro-gay song, I can't help but want to chant along. It's also pretty hilarious when in context of the film, but when not its kind of a fun song. I mean it's very very very heavy handed, but I don't care. I mean this isn't I Am What I Am. Also there is some nice guitar in this song that I didn't think I'd hear in a disco tune. Tasty. I also like the dual guitars in the song. This is like a sort of good bad. Like I roll my eyes when I hear this, but I feel like there is a possibility it could be kind of good. Not like the title track, but like, it's not the worst thing I've ever heard and it's far better than the last two songs. And also has more potential.
  5. Magic Night: This is such a happy song, this is one of two songs I bet will be stuck in your head. It's funny how simple the words are, but how infectious this song truly is. It's the kind of infectious that you only get from innocence, or ignorance (on part of the performer). Who cares, it's great and makes me want to dance and got some nice four on the floor. Thought, I don't think the drums sound that good... but that could just be the MP3. I could hear someone saying it sounds sped up, and when you pay deep attention it kind of feels a bit sped up, but when you just hear it without that it doesn't. But then again I could be a bit buzzed and that's why it feels a bit sped up, at the end of the day it's fun, dance-to-able and memorable. Nice disco tune, and nice guitar licks.
  6. The Sound of the City by David London: If anything this reminds me, vocally, of Elton John. Seriously, this sounds like his vocals on Philadelphia Freedom. In fact if this was a little more orchestrated and lavish sounding I'd bet this could be Philly soul instead of disco/dance pop.  The introductions to the songs seem top be rather weak. The thing that sucks is that I remember liking this tune so much more in the context of the film instead of by it's own self. I also can't get behind the orchestra hits. It's like over use, Horrace what the fuck were you thinking. This is a disco tune, not a Bond theme. Also the tune is far too long. But really, this has too much orchestration, it doesn't really make sense to me.
  7. Milkshake: Like most of the songs in this movie, they are so stupid. This is the stupidest, but it's also by far the catchiest. It's got that same happiness in Go West, but its so stupid. If you take the corniness of the 90s kids commercials extreme, and up the anty to making milk glamorous. Also get this, not just glamorous, the exact line in the movie for what they were going for "we're going to make milk more glamorous then champagne". This plays during the commercial that attempts to do that. This also happens to be the length of at least 3 commercials, maybe 4. I don't think I can exaggerate how dumb this is. But its also one of my favorite songs on the album, and is a favorite of all time. The intro to this is so musical, the beat and vocals work great and the strings are just ON. I can't find anything wrong with this song. On its own its great, the text of the movie elevate the like-ability of it. The only down side is I wish they took the " one more time" and repeated the song again on the album. PS they don't do it once more. 
  8. Y.M.C.A.: The only real difference between this and the Crusin' version from 1978 is Ray sings this, if I'm correct. I am saying that because the vocals sound a little different. Ray does sing in a similar style as Victor, but I don't know. I really can't say anything else other than, in the film it was PG and you see a few schlongs (not counting), and its during this number. Also the girl's (1) topless too, at a part, so I guess it's even....... Kinda. Oh I also prefer the original. When I revisited it I heard more guitar in the track, but that's really the only other main difference. Also I think i hear a clavichord in this version. The charm of the original isn't really present on this version. Maybe because Ray sounds more like a homy polone than the butch that Victor was. Ray also isn't as emotional and soulful. Like this feels less energetic.
  9. I Love You to Death: This tracks sung by the Construction Worker. Now I wasn't sure if this should be highlighted or not. This is easily the most rocking song by the group I heard. It kinda of makes me think Rocky Horror meets the Flight of the Conchords' tracks Love Is Your Weapon of Choice and Demon Woman. If that sounds interesting check it out. But in the movie it sounded a little off. I couldn't figure if the vocals were off tempo, pitch or choppy or if the instrumental was one of those. It took me multiple listens to get what the hell was "off" about this track. Also, did anyone else who saw the movie think this was one of the gayest things they have ever seen. The scene, with the imaginary music video of sorts. The sort of breakdown could so be in the Rocky Horror musical. Really it would work quite well there. 
  10. Sophistication  by The Ritchie Family: This is probably the worst track in the entire movie. It's so bland, uninteresting, stereotypical disco female vocal group. It's like a bad Donna Summer's track of the time. Even though some tracks are repetitive and some are cheesy as hell, this is the least interesting and easily forgettable track here. I mean I began to tune out about 30 seconds into the singing and, the only interesting part was the woman's breasts. Seriously. 
Overall I have to give this album a 6/10. This could quite possibly be the most consistently good album released by these guys. And with that in consideration..... That kinda makes this their best record. Now when you make pop music you want a catchy song, good hook, and for it to stick with you. There is enough variety, where there isn't on past records, and futures ones also. If you watch the movie I dare you to get Milkshake, Liberation or Magic Night out of you head. It can only be done with extensive time away from it, or therapy. And still they play in your head and don't leave when you utter the titular phrases. But seriously, this record isn't half bad. And even without the other artists considered, each song by the group isn't extremely similar. They all have their distance sound and idea. There isn't nearly as much overlap musically as on Crusin', Go West, Village People and so forth. Please do me a favor and check this out if you want to just have fun. 

No comments:

Post a Comment