I took some heat a while ago for saying that Sloan‘s quest to sound like the Beatles was bordering on parody. Never Hear the End of It had some totally cool songs, but I still think that too many Fab elements leave you sounding more like the Rutles than the Beatles.
So, did the Canadians take my advice and dial back the Liverpudlian a bit? Not really, but for some reason it works this time. Maybe it’s that the songs are better, or maybe it’s because I am in deep into another of my frequent Beatle deep dives. I don’t know, but I like this album MUCH better than the last.
Album opener “Believe in Me” kicks off with some tasty guitar strums that are what Class A amps were made to create. Backed up with some Marc Bolan-like drums, “Believe” delivers three minutes and eighteen seconds of boogie and a healthy dose of snark. It’s the best opening track for Sloan since One Chord to Another’s “Good in Everyone” and that’s saying something!
First: Apologies to the PR agent who sent this film to GLONO HQ a few years ago. It’s been peeking out at us from the cluttered bookshelf all these days and nights and we just never got the mustard up to watch it. I don’t exactly know why. We like T.Rex plenty and who doesn’t love a jacked up Ringo Starr from the early 70s? For whatever reason, we just weren’t inspired to watch it…until Saturday night.
In an effort to blow through the brittle cold of a Chicago winter and the recently imposed smoking ban in every public building (including bars and live music venues), we decided to host a Rock and Roll Movie Night for Losers; a sort of viewing party to review our backlog of DVDs and an excuse to drink with Ringo. Born to Boogie seemed a natural for the inaugural night.
If you know anything at all about T.Rex you know that it’s really two guys: Singer, songwriter, guitarist, and chief “Boogie Bopper” Marc Bolan; and percussionist Micky Finn. The rest is a rotating cast of players who supported the variations of T.Rex and Bolan’s fluid musical aspiration until his death at age 29 in 1977. In the few years he reigned the British charts, Bolan aspired to Beatledom heights but inevitably launched the parade of British phenoms whose acts never translated to American audiences. Britain seems fine with that.