Tuesday, August 7, 2012

Caramel - "My Tailor is Rich" 7"

Caramel – “My Tailor is Rich” 7”
Harriet Records, 1996

Acquired: Love Garden Shotgun Room, Used, 2007
Price: $.25

This is some spastic-ass French indie-pop. I remember really liking the A-Side—“My Tailor is Rich”—when I got this. This was the indie-pop incubation period, where I liked everything. It had the Harriet Records imprint on it, though, so I had to bite. I mean, the label was founded by a goddamn Harvard history professor, how cool is that? Some incredibly well educated and probably rich dude putting out groups like the Magnetic Fields, The Extra Glenns, Tullycraft, and Crayon (not to mention my beloved Ampersands 7” “Annabel Bleach”). There was just such a pure understanding of what music should sound like, a vision really, in Tim Alborn’s label. It didn’t have to sound great, it just had to be exciting. This 7” is some of the weirdest, sloppiest indie-pop I’ve ever heard with vocals executed in some of the most broken English I’ve ever heard (when they’re not speaking their native French, of course). Yet there’s a spark/verve to it that’s really kind of charming. It’s like music for some high-energy Nintendo 64 game. The mixing is all really awful, the guitars sound goofy as they jangle, and “My Tailor is Rich” has this fucking BIZARRE organ running through it but the song moves so quickly that there’s not really enough time for you to hate it. Best though, the insert has a bit called “Improve your French with Caramel” which features translations of words used in the songs. Translations for: The English, Beer, Awful, Cute, My Favourire [sic] Bands, a glass, his “baby,” flowery skirt, strippy tights (?), what a wonderful life, and hmm…you’re not my friend(!)* Too cute to dislike, even if the music is pretty much rubbish. The chorus to the “My Tailor is Rich” reads: “My tailor is rich/ And your mum is OK/ God saves the queen/ Yeah!” Not kidding.

Can't find any examples on the net, but here is a picture of this adorable band. Also, I played "My Tailor is Rich" on an episode of Pop Rocks circa the era I bought this, which makes sense. The playlist is enviable. It's also half-stuff I culled from the pitch perfect blog Little Hits, and I'm so so SO glad I went through and downloaded as much as I could before they sadly had to shut down. Oh man, 2007! When Challengers was in Rotation!

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