Mary Lou Lord – Mary Lou Lord
Kill Rock Stars, 1995
Acquired: Love Garden, Used, 2007
I always thought it was weird that this pretty-much covers record was self-titled. Actually, I didn't think it was weird, I thought it was stupid. And I bought this because I accidentally thought it had “Some Jingle Jangle Morning (When I'm Straight)” on it, which is really the only great song Mary Lou Lord has. Apparently she incited some sort of major label bidding war, which is insane, because she doesn't really have that much talent. She's a sort of token female-singer songwriter from the Pacific Northwest and I find her a tad bit annoying. On top of that, she pretty much ruins my favorite Bevis Frond tune “Lights are Changing,” sucking all of the weight out of it and painting it as a thin girl-with-a-guitar song. She also takes on Daniel Johnston's “Speeding Motorcycle” with more success (at least in terms of KJHK, which has this CD complete with a handwritten note not to fucking play it anymore, although the stripped down version is really good). It's almost like faux-twee. Lord seems to be trying to be ultra-cute. To be adorable, lovable, to be the girl you want to stick up for when a guy breaks her heart. I think it comes off as trying way too hard, although story about Courtney Love chasing her down the sunset strip is pretty hilarious, regardless of whether or not her claims of having a fling with Kurt Cobain is true or not. Ok, maybe I'm being a little harsh. The B-Side of this record is MUCH better than the ultra-lame A-Side. Lord original “The Bridge” is an excellent and affecting tune. “I'm Talking to You” ALSO does not sound shallow or phony. “His Indie World,” however, is her second masterpiece. It's a tale of a girl whose music taste just isn't hip enough for her boyfriend. Actually, that's why I want to own this record, because this is some clever-ass songwriting. Here are some sample lyrics. Actually, I'll just post all the lyrics because they're excellent. The “And Kim and Kim and Kim and Kim” part is my favorite. And seriously, it's hard to beat the end of that last verse. And sometimes I think Jenny feels like this...
I don't think I fit into his indie world
Guided By Voices and Velocity Girl
Eric's Trip and Rocket Ship
Rancid and Rocket from The Crypt
Bikini Kill and Built to Spill
It's plain to see that I don't fit
He says my songs are too deep and gloomy
He wishes that I could be more like Jenny Toomey
Just give me my Joni, my Nick, Neil, and Bob
You can keep your Tsunami, your Slant 6, and Smog
What's the story?
He says Butterglory
I say what's the news?
He says the Silver Jews
His Heavenly hang-up is getting me down
And it's making me wonder why he's hanging around
'Cause I don't fit into his indie scene
Huggy Bear and Helium and Half-Japanese
Sebadoh and Sentridoh and Superchunk
And I don't know
Doug and Lou and Calvin, too
And Kim and Kim and Kim and Kim
Yeah, I'm stuck in the past
And he's stuck on his four-track
But I can't get through to his one-track mind
I push play and record and a major chord
Maybe I'll win his heart this time
Maybe I'll win his heart this time
Actually, I retract all the shit I talked on Mary Lou Lord. After watching this interview she did with Matt Pinfield in 1997 I not only realize that MTV used to be cool, but that Mary Lou Lord is kind of maybe legit? She does a really good job at defending cover songs (although I still don't know why this thing is self-titled). But I totally identify with the "fan phase" thing.