i can't really praise Strictly Kev's truly impressive six-volume Kraftwerk cover-version compendium highly enough, so i won't; instead, i will just direct you to this website and to gorge your ears on over six hours and 200 tracks' worth of interpretations sacred (Bălănescu Quartet, Big Black) and profane (Señor Coconut, P.M. Dawn). Tell 'em tomasz sent you. And then ignore them as they narrow their eyes suspiciously, muttering "who?"
In the meantime, by popular demand (waddup Dennis, Leon) here are some more reviews of adverts from the popular UK-and-some-of-Europe based streaming music service Spodify.1
Bryn Terfel - Bad Boys (album)
i don't think it's a controversial statement to say that, if you're an operatic bass-baritone, you've probably got quite a strong voice. So why would you need accompaniment from weedy, clicky little rim-shot drums? A wholly regrettable artefact of the need to pop-ify all music for sales, they're as crass and unnecessary as those sporadic attempts at rewriting the works of famous authors in dubious patois to appeal to some groaning and nebulous caricature of "da youf", as uncomprehending scallies metaphorically gawk blankly and throw chips at them.
Share My Playlist
A shower of awful, guffawing stage schoolers congratulate themselves on their incredible taste in music while sharing playlists both curiously short and suspiciously redolent of focus grouping. Of particular awful note is the guy who listens to disco while driving to Newcastle and goes on about how he's soooo embarrassed to listen to it. Yeh? Not embarrassed enough not to tell everyone who listens to Spodify about it, clearly.
Spodify Day Pass
BACK OFF the BLOODY MIC, man. Good lord, there are crappy little bands in garages all over this land that can fashion a satisfactory pop shield from a coathanger and a pair of tights, yet the ad from The New Online Saviour of Music Distribution™ still sounds like someone's trying to push the microphone down the voiceover guy's throat at knifepoint. Just move back a few inches, that's all it'd take. Not as badly executed as that first Suitopia ad (nor as charming), but not far behind.
"I went to Africa and got kicked by a giraffe!" What? i'm not going there then! No, apart from the strange angle they decided to approach this from, and the slightly quaint early 90s house in the background, this is one of the only Spodify ads that isn't mindlessly, self-trepanningly infuriating. Fair play to you, charitable camelopard assaultee.
Zizzi Italian restuarants
Apparently "the A to Z of great Italian food begins with authenticity and ends with Zizzi!" Oh yeh? So what if i wanna order abbacchio? What about the antipasti i was going to have for my aperitivo? And my friend here: he's on a special seafood alimentazione, and quite fancied his pizza laden with alice. i guess we're also screwed if we want any kind of zuppa or anything with zucchini or zucchero in it. Sod this, we're going somewhere that doesn't structure its menu by arcane alphabetical cut-off points.
(Their web advertising's faintly hilarious too: "Our restaurants are run the Italian way... Each one's a bit different in character, architecture, age and feel; think Robert De Niro with a regional accent." Great, now i'm imagining a Scouse Robert de Niro. "You talkin' to me, lid?")
Red Bull Academy
Did that woman really just abbreviate the "www" of a web address to "dub dub dub"? Eurgghh. Kill me. No wait, her.
That new dating gameshow on ITV
This advert features a typical "getting to know you" dating conversation between a man and a woman, where the guy fumbles it after a bit of complimentary small-talk by remarking that "it'll be nice to talk to someone other than my mum!" Except the part of the woman is played by about half a dozen women all speaking at once, so either that's literally what happens on the gameshow and the hapless man has to attempt to seduce all six at the same time, or the guy is enough of a blundering moron to have fallen at the exact same hurdle six different times. Whichever it is, surely Spodify listeners don't watch ITV anyway?
Christmas holiday drinking & driving
"You will now have to wait twelve seconds to get to your music again," intones a blokey, no-nonsense voice. "Imagine having to wait twelve months to get to your car again. That's what'll happen if you drink and drive this Christmas". Wow, pretty good logic! i was gonna drink and drive loads, y'know, just for fun. But i'm certainly not going to now i know there's such a clever numerological basis for avoiding it.
Sorority Row (film)
Hey, you know what'd be a great thing to run in a 20-second, audio-only slot? A film trailer! Hopefully the film is better than its marketing campaign. Doesn't sound like it, though.
1 i only originally started calling it "Spodify" as an ineffectual form of mockery ("more like Stan Darsh!") of the software's hideous name, based on the British slang term "spod", to denote a bit of a geeky loser (and not an acronym for "spastic or disabled" as one of the more ribald UD entries tries to claim). However, i now get a good handful of people arriving after actively searching for "Spodify".
Christ knows why, but i think the most likely explanation is that the the /t/ phoneme doesn't exist in that horrible trendy Nathan Barley London hipster accent all Spodify's developers seem to have, but instead gets glossed to a /d/, which might be reasonable if you were talking to an American about "butter", etc., but just sounds utterly jarring and foolish when surrounded by what sounds like Jamie Oliver trying his hand at speed seduction, and that as a result there are people out there who honestly believe it to be spelled with a "d". Oh what a world, etc. One day i'll probably have to write a detailed blog explaining why i both love and detest Spodify at the same time.