Thursday, August 28, 2008

Lyrical mastery...in celebration of AC/DC

AC/DC does, after all, have it right. While I bemoan their lyric machine and it's fifty-five word vocabulary, it ensures one thing. The songs that are spit out by this gigantic Batmanesque Lyricometer are going to rock. When the only words you can choose from are "fight", "fire", "balls", "rock N roll", "power", "the", "and", "is" and "ain't", you have no choice but to come up with a rockin' good time. AC/DC understands that simplicity is the key to kicking ass through music. Perhaps the best example of this is the antithesis of AC/DC's Lyricometer, the Rush Lyricoplasmatronicalmeter. A brief list of words used in Rush songs and titles, as sent to me by our music director, Steve Colwill: "malignant", "narcissism", "refuge", "elevation", "solace", "benevolent", "empty vessels", "moral compass", "willows", "weathered", "elemental", "spindrift", "pantoum", and...so many others. (By the way - if yuo go to www.allthelyrics.com, an online compilation of all musical lyrics available to the world, you will find that about half the lyrics to Rush songs are "unavailable at the artist's request". I guess Rush wants to keep certain portions of it's Lyricoplasmatronicalmeter under Top Secret status.)

As the lyrics of an artist are a window into their soul, one can only surmise that AC/DC are suffering from a constant barrage of Rock N Roll Fighting Fire, and that Rush suffer from Malignant Narcissism. Simplicity is the key to a great rock tune, (CCR, AC/DC, etcetera). And if lyricism is to be respected and appreciated, simple words usually convey more powerful messages (Bob Dylan, Neil Young, etcetera). I wouldn't have even mentioned this had I not met a wonderful young lady, Christina from the University of Ottawa Heart Institute, last night at a golf tournament. She was saying that her boyfriend, a giant Rush fan, complained that we at CHEZ 106 played "Roll The Bones" to celebrate Alex Lifeson's birthday yesterday. He felt "Roll The Bones" was the worst Rush song ever. I suggested that perhaps "The Rest Of Their Catalogue" could give "Roll The Bones" a run for it's money. But she told me he was talking about a video for Roll The Bones where a skeleton rapped in the middle of the song. And I said that was ridiculous. Even a band as pretentious as Rush couldn't possibly do something like that...

I had to look it up. Some things on the internet have the capacity to ruin your life. Like that one cup thing. And this video will not ruin your life. But it might make you very, very sad.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6ARlP_sJTv4

4 comments:

  1. That was truly terrible! The skeleton doesn't show up until approx the 4 minute mark, if you're still awake by then.

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  2. and just when i thought i couldn't possibly hate rush anymore...

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  3. AC/DC does indeed rock. However, even if they did know more than 55 words it wouldn't matter because you can barely make out what they're saying anyway. I heard that some of their tunes are finally going to make it Rock Band. Included with them is bag of marbles to stuff in your mouth for the vocals. :)

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  4. This is true. The reason for this is that although the AC/DC lyric machine has a 55 word vocabulary, Brian Johnson has only eleven words in his personal repertoire. And so they don't ask him to sing the actual words, he just screams into the mic. And the lyrics are printed on the CD covers so people can find out what the song was supposed to be about. Which is always "rock and roll".

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