the puppini sisters - "panic" (from the betcha bottom dollar lp, released july 31, import available for preorder here.)
your grandmother would love it. but what would morrissey say?
well, he wouldn't like it, first, b/c, well, it's not morrissey singing, is it? second, he'd probably make some ill-considered remark about its edges being smoothed--OR TOO PARALLEL (sorry, on a morrissey kick lately)--&, you know, it no longer being subversive.
he'd be right, to a degree. the vocal arrangements are really smooth & there's not much thought given to the instrumental backing. (it's not the best song on the record--that may be their version of "sway," by dino, not the stones--but it's their "statement.") that is, you could slip this in between your mum's rod stewart songbooks & michael bublé albums & she'd be none the wiser. put this on top 40, though, & then give a listen.
like the pipettes, the hot puppies, lucky soul, &c., the puppini sisters bring back the classic girl-group sound ... only here, by "classic" i mean "traditional" & by "girl" i mean "dame." this is straight-up andrews sisters, a beat i don't think anyone has worked since bette midler doing "boogie woogie bugle boy." let's call the original "panic" what it is : "metal guru" w/ "play-my-record" griping & kiddie choir (which, as evidenced by ringleader, morrissey still thinks is really subversive, some twenty years on). surely, in the mid-80s, there were far more bands, probably in manchester alone, who sounded like t. rex than there are traditional harmony groups today.
the song's central claim, too, rings far more true for the puppini girls than it did for morrissey/marr/&c. : "because the music that they constantly play / it says nothing to me about my life." again, surely angsty pasty boys had many more bands shedding vicarious tears for them than neat girls, neither quite pop nor indie, do today. but if the aforementioned bands end up getting their records played--&, yes, actually write songs about their own lives--well, bless the hanged dj, indeed.