Monday, April 19, 2010

Different Class (1996)

I read somewhere that fans of Neil Tennant and the Pet Shop Boys would be sure to appreciate Jarvis Cocker and Pulp. You didn't have to tell me any more than that. I signed on right away, though in the end I was as mystified by the comparison as by others I've heard with the Pet Shop Boys and Erasure. At least I like Pulp, and quite a lot. Especially this little bitter pill. Don't hesitate on account of the bitterness. That's strictly limited to the lyrics—the storyline of "Common People," for example: "And then in 30 seconds time she said / 'I want to live like common people / I want to do whatever common people do / I want to sleep with common people / I want to sleep with common people like you' / Well what else could I do? / I said 'I'll see what I can do' / I took her to a supermarket." (Bitterness of course never precludes humor, and we will be examining a cover version of this song soon enough, one that very nearly outdoes this, or does.) There's sugarcoating too: the music is all upbeat, almost chirpy, capable of pealing off lusty rounds of "la-la la-la la-la-la" without demeaning the general tone. Plus it features a bottom that can whomp you good, gorgeous guitar fills, and numerous turns to a dance throb that's never gonna let you down. Except for a little matter of looks, the better comparison here may be to Bryan Ferry by way of Martin Fry and back again, filtered through David Bowie sobbing. One look at Jarvis Cocker and you know he's all business. He has to be.

No comments:

Post a Comment