Tuesday, February 15, 2011

The Korgis - "Art School Annexe" (1979)

Lots of Korgis stuff up on iTunes. I'd never heard anything predating "Everybody's Got to Learn Sometime" (their top 20 U.S. hit from 1980) before and this track, as it turns out, is a treat. Was the b-side of their second single.

Starts off in new wave retro mode with muted (surf) rhythm guitar. Keyboardist is vamping in a retro style, but his tone is not very retro and the drums don't sound retro either. They don't have to sound retro, of course, and it sounds fine, but things end up working out in a different way when the retro style suddenly vanishes in the chorus.

For the first two lines, the chorus sounds like a power pop song, but the words are unusual and it could definitely be compared to Jonathan Richman. On the third line of the chorus, though, the song suddenly opens up into this post-progressive, hard rock/pop mode with overdubbed keyboards, power chords, and drum fills.

That's a long way to go in a minute and four seconds! Song is pleasantly constructed from there as well with a second verse, repeat of the chorus, and then a retro style guitar solo over the verse chords. With no third verse, it just goes to the chorus again afterward and, in fact, repeats the second part of the chorus as though the song was almost over already. To flesh it out, they play on the "art school" subject matter in a weird coda that extends the progressive rock aspect of the song with keyboard chords over a floating beat, a bass solo, and, finally, a fake ending.

No comments:

Post a Comment