Tuesday, July 26, 2011

A song for every year of my life #5: 1981

Elvis Costello & The Attractions - "Watch Your Step"
Elvis Costello's backing band The Attractions existed for almost twenty years, though to call them a backing band is an insult. Besides having one of the five greatest rhythm sections in the history of popular music (my hyperbole here is only mild), The Attractions were probably just as responsible for Mr. Costello's success as the songs he wrote for them to play. Just listen to the difference between the Attractions-backed "Watching the Detectives" on the U.S. version of Costello's first album, My Aim Is True, and the other songs on the record, recorded with Clover. It's a great record, and Clover was a competent, skilled, and subtle backing group, but "Watching the Detectives" has that indescribable voodoo chemistry that can't be learned or forced. By the time of 1981's Trust, they'd been killing it for almost four years.

Alternate choice: Siouxsie & The Banshees - "Monitor"
This song melts my face off. They never bettered it.

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