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Make A Killing: Aimee Mann, song-by song

Discussion in 'Music Corner' started by Lance LaSalle, Feb 21, 2021.

  1. Transience

    Transience Active Member

    Location:
    UK
    Very few of these tracks are download only. The vast majority of them started out as part of a physical product. When she first made these available i only downloaded the tracks i didn't already have on CD. From memory, there were only a handful.
     
    groovelocked likes this.
  2. captouch

    captouch Forum Resident

    Location:
    Bay Area, CA
    Limits to Love

    @Lance LaSalle
    summarized this really well with great observations. I haven’t known anyone quite like this in my life, so I can’t identify with it so much - as a result, it doesn’t hit as deep. But it’s a well written song and I enjoy listening to it.

    4.4/5
     
    Lance LaSalle likes this.
  3. Limits to Love

    Getting extremely strong Suzanne Vega vibes from this one for some reason? Not my favorite lyrically, or in terms of the production, frankly, but I enjoyed listening to it.

    3.5/5
     
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  4. robcar

    robcar Forum Resident

    Location:
    Denver, CO
    "Limits To Love" pushes past the typical 'Til Tuesday musical format and, really for the first time, gives us a preview of the style that Aimee would work in at the outset of her solo career. There's a baroque pop feel to this song that was barely hinted at prior, and it's fantastic. Excellent song.

    4.2/5
     
    BZync and Lance LaSalle like this.
  5. Lance LaSalle

    Lance LaSalle Prince of Swollen Sinus Thread Starter

    Our votes for "Limits to Love"

    1-0
    2-0
    3-0
    4-3
    4-1
    Average: 4.2
     
  6. Lance LaSalle

    Lance LaSalle Prince of Swollen Sinus Thread Starter

    Today's song is "Long Gone (Buddy)", written by Aimee Mann and Michael Hausman; produced by Rhett Davies.

    Lyric.

    Aimee Mann: vocals, bass
    Robert Holmes: guitars, vocals
    Michael Montes: keyboards
    Michael Hausman: drums, percussion, programming
    Marcus Miller: additional bass


    "Long Gone (Buddy)" was also released on Coming Up Close: A Retrospective in 1996.

    The use of Marcus Miller comes from the fact that Rhett Davies was not satisfied with Aimee's playing, and after several hours of recording, he called in the session man according to a 2018 interview from a still-disgruntled Aimee.
     
    groovelocked likes this.
  7. Lance LaSalle

    Lance LaSalle Prince of Swollen Sinus Thread Starter

    "Long Gone (Buddy)", with it's swishy, fishy drum sound, popping new wave funk bass, icy keyboard textures and swathes of reverb definitely hearkens back to earlier 'Til Tuesday songs and seems more firmly lodged in its 80s timeframe than a lot of these songs. Another break up song, this one also feels somehow less mature than the others: the whiny side coming out; but in a true break up you see things with both maturity and self-pity at various times, and I have no doubt that there's emotional truth in this. Despite it sounding almost like something off Voices Carry, it's more developed arrangement/production-wise and I find the melody to be more subtle than a lot of those earlier songs, if also less catchy and sweet.

    Ultimately it's a good album track on a great album and feels like a bit of a throwback, but as I've written before I don't think it's posseble for Aimee to deliver a bad song at all at this point: 3.4/5
     
    BZync and groovelocked like this.
  8. smilin ed

    smilin ed Forum Resident

    Location:
    Durham
    Inevitable production aside = 3
     
    Lance LaSalle likes this.
  9. captouch

    captouch Forum Resident

    Location:
    Bay Area, CA
    Long Gone (Buddy)

    I do agree it’s a small step back production wise and not as complex lyrically, but I still really like it. I can take the ‘80’s production in smaller batches without it becoming distracting and I do feel like the lyrics are heartfelt and the singing has emotion.

    “So we just cry
    With hopelessness
    We're making such a mess”

    “It's not that I’m frightened of being alone
    It's just that I know what a burden this grief can be
    Everything happens for something, I know
    Can't understand for the moment what this could mean”

    “Nobody wants to be happier more than me
    Nobody wants to be happier more than I do
    But happiness
    I must confess
    I don't have”

    Sometimes you just want to express things simply, as we don’t always think in lofty terms when we’re expressing ourselves honestly. This still shows enough emotional honesty that I find it compelling coupled with the singing. This could be redone in a cool way with a more modern interpretation, maybe slowed down just a bit.

    4/5

    @Lance LaSalle , did we skip “Believed You Were Lucky” on purpose to do it later?
     
    Lance LaSalle likes this.
  10. Lance LaSalle

    Lance LaSalle Prince of Swollen Sinus Thread Starter

    No, I just missed it somehow. Tomorrow! Thank you for catching that.
     
  11. robcar

    robcar Forum Resident

    Location:
    Denver, CO
    "Long Gone (Buddy)" (I see we skipped one song but will be covering it tomorrow) is probably the weakest cut on the album thus far, but it's still pretty good. Marcus Miller is a very highly regarded jazz/funk musician (who was at the time Miles Davis' main collaborator) and his bass is very noticeable here. It gives the track a lift and groove that it's doubtful Aimee on her own could have provided, although I can understand that she didn't appreciate that input. I think this song is perhaps a touch more "dated" than the rest of the album but I still enjoy it.

    3.6/5
     
    Lance LaSalle likes this.
  12. groovelocked

    groovelocked Forum Resident

    Location:
    Columbus OH (USA)
    Limits To Love:
    Maybe an updated leftover from Welcome Home? Still a great song, and I’ve known a few of those girls. 4/5

    Long Gone Buddy:
    I know this might be a strange take, but I’ve always interpreted this song to be about grieving the loss of a dog or cat named Buddy.

    So what if it's breaking my heart at the root
    Something that could happen to anyone, i suppose (the loss, or helplessness of its illness)
    Never any comfort to get from the truth (knowing or not knowing the cause)
    From knowing the part of this person that no one knows (3rd person, no one knows you like your dog or cat-only they see the truest you)
    So we just cry
    With hopelessness (over the loss/illness)
    We're making such a mess (?)

    It's long gone, buddy, now - run and go after it (in the afterlife)

    It's not that I’m frightened of being alone
    It's just that I know what a burden this grief can be (and God losing a pet is crushing, add the guilt of if you did enough)
    Everything happens for something, I know
    Can't understand for the moment what this could mean (obvious)

    That love is gone
    That love is blind
    That love is so unkind (I won’t have any more pets, the heartbreak of losing them after 15+ years.. it’s cruel)

    It's long gone, buddy, now - run and go after it

    Nobody wants to be happier more than me
    Nobody wants to be happier more than I do (people like to dismiss your grief because they don’t want to let you be sad, especially if it’s prolonged grief. They want you to ‘cheer up’)
    But happiness
    I must confess
    I don't have

    5/5
     
  13. Lance LaSalle

    Lance LaSalle Prince of Swollen Sinus Thread Starter

    Our votes for "Long Gone (Buddy)"

    1-0
    2-0
    3-2
    4-2
    5-1
    Average: 3.8
     
  14. Lance LaSalle

    Lance LaSalle Prince of Swollen Sinus Thread Starter

    Today's song is "(Believed You Were) Lucky", with lyrics by Aimee Mann and music by Aimee Mann and Jules Shear. Produced by Rhett Davies.

    Lyric.

    I accidentally skipped it the other day, which is odd because it's a song that really stands out to me. I blame the messed up order of the lyrics in the booklet.

    Aimee Mann: vocals, acoustic guitar bass
    Robert Holmes: guitar, backing vocal
    Michael Hausman: drums, percussion, keyboards

    Michael Montes: keyboards

    "(Believed You Were) Lucky" was released as a single in 1988 and peaked at #95 on the US pop chart.

    There was a promo video which I'll link to below: I didn't link to it here because it's a "clean" version, i.e., without the F-bomb that she drops at the end. Also in 2018, Aimee Mann said that she hated the video, with good reason, as it's pretty terrible (but funny.)
     
  15. Lance LaSalle

    Lance LaSalle Prince of Swollen Sinus Thread Starter

  16. Lance LaSalle

    Lance LaSalle Prince of Swollen Sinus Thread Starter

    Man, that video is just terrible. But I can see where they got the extremely bizarre (and equally terrible) album cover from.

    But goddamn, what a great song. There is something so incredibly uplifting about this chorus, even though it's another song about a breakup. Underneath the eighties keyboards, there is this hint of the country song, or the traditional seventies singer-songwriter genre here. But the keyboards and chiming guitars really add a lot to the song I think and elevate it over the slight tiredness of those genres, even if, at the same time, they slightly date it to the eighties: still, this is a good example of the eighties, with an overall organic band feel.

    Aimee Mann had something to say with this song and the instrumental breaks are fairly short: normally I kind of shy away from "too much singing", which I call "Elvis Costello syndrome", (with no irony intended considering tomorrow's song), but here it works for me, as I feel that Aimee makes the point she wants to make pretty strongly and succinctly and then the song is over. In fact, the three minutes and thirty seven seconds of the song seems to take far less time to me -- which is a good thing.

    Now, weirdly, on the album version the ultimate line ("Life could be F***ing great") is one of those magic moments that stretches out forever in the most glorious way. It's like time stops. Technically I think there's a really subtle time change, maybe there's an extra beat added ot the line? Or maybe it's just the syncopationof the lyrics changes; anyway the emphasis on "****ing" just feels so natural and right and powerful.

    I am ambivalent about profanity in songs: if it works it works, if it doesn't it doesn't.

    It works SO WELL HERE.

    It's a real pity that the "clean version" in the video goes with it's mere reiteration of "so great", was the face this album showed to the world as I feel a very powerful moment of emphasis is lost and I have to wonder if, had it been included(in some alternate, less prudish universe), the song would have done better than the rather pathetic #95. History might be totally different!
    But I suppose we still would have had the first War with Iraq a couple of years later.

    4.8/5
     
    groovelocked, captouch and robcar like this.
  17. Lance LaSalle

    Lance LaSalle Prince of Swollen Sinus Thread Starter

    I'm a bit behind with this...
    Collated ratings for Welcome Home.
    1. What About Love 3.82
    2. Coming Up Close 4.9
    3. ON Sunday 4.08
    4. Will She Just Fall Down 4.28
    5. David Denies 3.775
    6. Lovers' Day 3.6875
    7. Have Mercy 3.425
    8. Sleeping And Walking 3.9
    9. Angels Never Call 3.8
    10. No One Is Watching You Now 3.8
    Welcome Home: 4.175
    Average by song: 3.9468
    • Yesterday 3.425
    • Sign of Love 2.78
    • Do It Again 3.5
    • Goodbye Amen 3.125
    • Time Stand Still 4.3
     
  18. robcar

    robcar Forum Resident

    Location:
    Denver, CO
    "(Believed You Were) Lucky" is a great song and one of the highlights on Everything's Different Now. I like that she shoehorns both "acquiesce" and an F-bomb into the lyrics. I can only imagine the Epic execs jamming out to this in the preview studio, thinking about how this was going to be a big hit single and then getting to that final line at the end. Seems like something Aimee would have done knowingly!

    4.5/5
     
  19. smilin ed

    smilin ed Forum Resident

    Location:
    Durham
    Like it = 4
     
    Lance LaSalle likes this.
  20. tenor1

    tenor1 Forum Resident

    Oops, somehow this thread stopped showing up in my alerts so I'm behind. To quickly catch up:

    (Believed You Were) Lucky is a fabulous song and definitely one of my 5/5 songs on this album. Limits to Love is close behind.

    Unlike most folks here I'm not that big a fan of J for Jules. It's good but it's definitely in the lower echelon on this album for me. Long Gone (Buddy) is one of the least memorable songs on the album. It's still good, there are no clinkers here, but not one of my favorites.
     
    Lance LaSalle likes this.
  21. robcar

    robcar Forum Resident

    Location:
    Denver, CO
    FWIW, I’ve noticed that if you don’t click on the notification right away telling you that somebody has made a new post to a watched thread, you’ll stop receiving new notifications. Once you click on the the thread, the notifications will start again. I’ve made a point of not clicking on the red number in “alerts” unless I plan to click through to each thread where a new post has been made.
     
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  22. Lance LaSalle

    Lance LaSalle Prince of Swollen Sinus Thread Starter

    You have to interact with the thread somehow, either by replying or liking the last post.

    Alternatively just click on “watched threads” and you can see there is there is a new post or not.
     
    tenor1 likes this.
  23. BZync

    BZync Senior Member

    Location:
    Los Angeles
    Wait! How did I not notice this thread until today?

    I'm going to have to get started as Everything's Different Now is a favorite album of mine.

    This should be a good one. Thanks, Mr Lance LaSalle!
     
  24. BZync

    BZync Senior Member

    Location:
    Los Angeles
    I was, of course, familiar with the Till Tuesday track Voice's Carry when I opened the latest issue of the ICE Newsletter and read a glowing review of Everything's Different Now. I'm not sure that I had ever before purchased a CD, unheard, based solely on a written review, but it was described in a way that made it sound like it was recorded specifically to address my personal musical taste. Unfortunately, I have been unable to find that review online. In any case, the review was spot on. I was floored by this album. Ultimately, this lead to discovering Elliot Smith, but more on that later.
     
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  25. BZync

    BZync Senior Member

    Location:
    Los Angeles
    I have to admit I was hooked right from the start. The acoustic guitar riff that begins this track acts as a mission statement. This wasn't typical 80's pop, even though it has a cool synth line featured prominently within the verse. But the chorus replaces it with a Link Wray type guitar figure. By the late 80's, I was ready and embracing guitar based pop music again. I loved how this track looks backward and forward at the same time. It sounded thoroughly modern to me. This may be my fave track on the album, but every song is worthy.

    Sometime later, probably after Whatever, I back tracked and purchased the first two Tuesday albums. To my ears, Everything's Different Now has the sonic earmarks of the beginning of Ms Mann's solo career.
     
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