Official music page and soapbox of Matt Snell

Sunday 13 March 2011

5 Songs You Can't Understand

Okay, you might get one, two would be impressive. If you can understand all five of these songs, I owe you one hundred dollars. I intend to profile each of these artists individually someday, but for now, groove on this little playlist I made up for the polyglots out there.

Kaizers Orchestra -  Songs from a Norwegian Junkyard

This wild band evolved from an outfit called Blod, Snått & Juling, which formed in the late eighties. They take a cue from Tom Waits junkyard stomp and add a distinctive taste of Norway. I have the albums Ompa til du dør and Evig Pint, and both come highly recommended. As for the video, if you stick around at least until minute four you're in for treat. If they ever come to town, I'll see you there.

Islaja - For When Bjork Is Not Enough

When a friend of mine first played me the album Meritie by Finnish artist Islaja, I thought it captured fairly accurately the sound of having a fever. That's a compliment. Islaja's sound has evolved, but I still can't get enough. This track makes me want to split firewood, dance around the bonfire, and have sex with a werewolf. Here goes:

Os Mutantes - Tropicalia Par Excellence

Time to leave Scandinavia for sunny Brazil. Tropicalia music was born in the sixties out of the fusion of Brazilian rhythms with American and British psychedelic rock. The result speaks for itself. "Panis et Circenses" by São Paulo's Os Mutantes is such a joyful tune, the first time I heard it I asked my roommate to replay it three times in a row.

Ros Sereysothea - Cambodia Rocks 

Speaking of psychedelic music, Cambodia's version is second to none. Many of the pioneers of this style were murdered under the Khmer Rouge regime, but the music survives. LA band Dengue Fever has picked up the tradition, but I think we'll go with some classic Ros Sereysothea (just close your eyes and ignore the slightly strange video).


No idea where this came from, and not what I was looking for. But I always thought this song would be better in Yiddish.

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