Wednesday, October 3, 2012
"Stay Awhile" by The Bells (1971)
Fun Fact: This wins my vote for the worst album cover yet on Revisiting Vinyl
Fun Fact 2: It also got released so much it had two different titles (or maybe it was changed out of shame...)
View the Premise & Ground Rules for Revisiting Vinyl.
"Into my room he creeps without making a sound."
That stalkery lyric is from a tender love song. No, really, it is.
Filed between: The Beatles and Pat Benetar (Come on, one number either way!)
My Overall Rating of the Tracks Separately:
Don't bother. Seriously, don't bother.
I didn't like any of the songs on "Stay Awhile" by The Bells, so I'm linking to a really good song by Archie Bell & The Drells instead.
When the zeitgeist of a certain musical genre gets in full swing, bands come out of the woodwork. They're either people who want to do what everybody else is doing or people who were already doing it, just not particularly well. I don't know which kind The Bells were when poppy folk rock hit, but then, it doesn't really matter.
Truth is, they don't do poppy folk rock very well. Harsher truth is, they sound a lot like The Carpenters, only more anorexic.
However, the B-side of "Stay Awhile" is all covers and The Bells excel at covers of songs like Proud Mary and Maxwell's Silver Hammer. By the way, those hyperlinks are to the originals because what The Bells excel at is making really great songs wonder what happened to their testicles. Seriously, this version of Proud Mary sounds like a Will Ferrell / Ana Gasteyer skit on SNL. Maxwell's Silver Hammer just sounds like twee crap sung by drunk muppets.
The Bells do make me feel an emotion I never thought possible - sympathy for Jose Feliciano. Seriously, it's one thing to massacre your own malformed children, but what Jose Feliciano and Rain ever do to you?!
I was almost through this turd and had chalked it up to an innocent waste of time, but then the last track played and my jaw hit the floor. Not only do The Bells cover Cliff Richard's Sing a Song of Freedom, they feel the need to add their own incredibly racist verse. How racist can The Carpenters-lite get, you ask? Well, it starts with the line "Hey there, Mister Black Man," and I'm not comfortable writing any more of it. Holy Shit.
So, is it an album? No. Sadly, it looks like this may be the closest I get to a Beatles review in this blog. Curse you, random number generator!!!
Double curse you random number generator!!! Up next, we get to hear a really good song. Too bad it's on an lame LP, not a 45. The song is Bette Davis Eyes; the record is "Mistaken Identity" by Kim Carnes.