Love Singing Two Songs at the Same Time
posted by January 30 at 15:14 PMon
Maybe it’s a greedy time-management issue or maybe it’s the natural result of the post-Girl Talk era, but to paraphrase Pete Townshend, all the best rock songs have two singers singing two different songs at the same time.
The grandpappy of the genre is, for me at least, is “The Murder Mystery,” the nine-minute double-warble tone poem that lands near the end of The Velvet Underground. But it would take a good 15 years for the two-songs-at-once formula to move out of the avant-garde icebox and into the arena of rockrockfuckingROCK (or in the case of example number two, the arena of folkfolkantiFOLK.)
Item #1: “The Lowest Part is Free!” the 1994 Archers of Loaf track whose double-decker bridge makes it the most exciting alterna-rock song ever.
Item #2: “Steak for Chicken,” the 2001 Moldy Peaches track featuring two complete sets of lyrics that intertwine so beautifully and hilriously, adding up to the most perfect realiziation of the two-songs-at-once formula except for:
Item #3: “Burn, Don’t Freeze,” the 1999 track by Sleater-Kinney, also featuring a different set of lyrics for each singer, and the most amazingly intense and intricate interplay between the two. I never got to see ‘em do it live, probably because balancing Corin’s shout with Carrie’s mewl live onstage brought up some serious sound-mixing issues. Still, the platonic ideal of the genre, for now.
If anyone knows of any other great double-decker songs, let me know. I’m working on a two-songs-at-once playlist to make my head explode…