Stranger than Fiction, Larger Than Life: the Finn Brothers song-by-song discussion thread

Discussion in 'Music Corner' started by Lance LaSalle, Jan 21, 2019.

  1. HitAndRun

    HitAndRun Forum Resident

    He formally started practicing Tibetan Buddhism in about 2004, but there seems to be quite a bit of history before then that points in that direction.
     
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  2. Lance LaSalle

    Lance LaSalle TEFL Lord Thread Starter

    Location:
    Vsetin
    Ah, did not know that. I know that he did some Buddhist camp in 1992 or so, after Woodface, according to the Chris Bourke boook; lost weight, didn't drink and so on; and that the title Before and After was Buddhist-inspired.
     
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  3. Paul H

    Paul H Forum Resident

    Location:
    Nottingham, UK
    Tim's a Buddhist?? Who knew? Oh yeah, you guys...
     
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  4. Big Heart seems nice enough and worthy of repeat listening. I think it is catchy and that solid cadence on the drums could have served well for a bit more interplay by others. Just a bit unfinished.
    3.5
     
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  5. Big Heart opens my eyelids. Enjoyable 3/5 that doesn't really add up to anything.
    Prime B-side/album gem stuff.
     
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  6. Solid, high 3 from me - it's very listenable even though I don't go to it very often at all.
     
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  7. factory44

    factory44 Forum Resident

    Location:
    Pittsburgh, PA USA
    Big Heart is a really nice pop song. As others have mentioned it’s surprising Tim didn’t put it on one of his solo records. It would have made an excellent album track or b-side.

    3/5.
     
  8. therunner

    therunner Forum Resident

    Location:
    England
    First time I've ever heard "Big Heart" and it's catchy enough that I can still remember the melody long after hearing it just once. Now I just have to decide whether that's a good thing or if it's going to become one of those annoying pop earworms ? 3/5

    At that time Tim seemed to have the ability to write this type of song in his sleep, but maybe they came so easily to him that he wasn't invested in any of them enough to raise them above the level of ok album tracks/b-sides.
     
  9. Lance LaSalle

    Lance LaSalle TEFL Lord Thread Starter

    Location:
    Vsetin
    This is kind of how I feel about Tim’s output, put succinctly.
     
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  10. Turk Thrust

    Turk Thrust Forum Resident

    Location:
    U.K.
    Yeah, this is certainly stronger than some of the recent songs that we have discussed. I'm slightly surprised that this was left in the can for so long.

    3/5.
     
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  11. Lance LaSalle

    Lance LaSalle TEFL Lord Thread Starter

    Location:
    Vsetin
    Our votes for "Big Heart"

    1-0
    2-0
    3-9
    4-1
    5-0
    Overall average: 3.12
     
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  12. Lance LaSalle

    Lance LaSalle TEFL Lord Thread Starter

    Location:
    Vsetin
    Today's song is "Mr Catalyst", written by Tim Finn and Eddie Rayner.


    Yet another songwriting demo, parts of this song were eventually reworked into Split Enz's "Years Go By"and Tim Finn's "Spiritual Hunger."
     
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  13. Lance LaSalle

    Lance LaSalle TEFL Lord Thread Starter

    Location:
    Vsetin
    Once upon a time Eddie Rayner had a nifty musical idea, a sort of dramatic, ominous chord progression. It sounded great when played on synth.

    Tim Finn had a musical idea, too: a very rhythmic, almost Michael Jackson-ish R&B thing that was insanely catchy.

    The two put the ideas together, using Neil, Griggs, Crombie and Hester as a backing group and Tim Finn added some hastily-written filler lyrics that would be rewritten later.

    Then they listened to the experiment and realized that it didn't work at all. Singing over Eddie's chord progression detracted from it. And Tim's part was just a disassociated, lonely R&B chorus in search of a verse.

    35 years later I listened to it and agreed, giving it it a 1.5.

    I mean, there's something there in both parts. "Year's Go By" and "Spiritual Hunger" are respectively great and good songs.

    But this one isn't really even a song, it's just an experiment, not meant for consumption. It does make me feel, along with the Neil demos we heard earlier that Split Enz was really consciously trying to make a funk/R&B album at the time.

    Tomorrow we'll begin See Ya 'Round.

    Note: I forgot to give average score for "Your Inspiration". For some reason these averages matter to me. 2.38
     
    Last edited: Jul 2, 2019
  14. Paul H

    Paul H Forum Resident

    Location:
    Nottingham, UK
    We really are scraping the bottom of the barrel. 2/5.
     
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  15. HitAndRun

    HitAndRun Forum Resident

    This doesn't work for me. It's an alternative version of Spiritual Hunger to me, and I don't really like Spiritual Hunger all that much. There are some great songs on TBC, but that isn't one of them - in my opinion. It's interesting to see Tim trying something more funky, but it just doesn't work for me. Unlike the Neil songwriting demos, there isn't anything in terms of vocal melody that stands out. Is this the last Tim/Eddie Rayner co-composition? If so, it's not a good place to end, but then again it wasn't originally released.

    2/5
     
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  16. Turk Thrust

    Turk Thrust Forum Resident

    Location:
    U.K.
    It's a bit of a slog to get through these isn't it... ;)

    This is repetitive, dull and not something that I would listen to again if it were by another band.

    2/5.
     
  17. robcar

    robcar Forum Resident

    Location:
    Denver, CO
    “Mr. Catalyst” seems to have the reputation as the nadir of the band’s output, and I can see that. I guess it’s grown on me a little bit. I agree that the two parts don’t work together, and I much prefer the moody verse to the peppy chorus. The lyrics are clearly nonsensical as the main purpose of this appears to have been to see if there was something here that could become the basis of a future song from a melodic and rhythmic standpoint.

    It at least sounds good for a demo. Can’t go higher than 2.2 here.
     
  18. I like the funk groove but it quickly becomes too repetitive with the vocals lines going nowhere. 1.5
     
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  19. This just isn't strong. I love how that little tiny snip makes it into "Years Go By" as if Eddie said "Well, Tim, all I need from this one are these three or so notes, you can have everything else...."

    2/5
     
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  20. DEAN OF ROCK

    DEAN OF ROCK Forum Resident

    Location:
    Hoover, AL
    Can’t hardly wait for Crowded House, Finn Bros etc.....
     
  21. factory44

    factory44 Forum Resident

    Location:
    Pittsburgh, PA USA
    Tim definitely wanted to move the Enz to a funky r&b sound. Not real sure why...

    The music for Mr Catalyst is cool, but that’s all I can really say this demo has going for it.

    2/5.
     
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  22. therunner

    therunner Forum Resident

    Location:
    England
    I'm really surprised nobody has given the dreadful "Mr Catalyst" only a 1 yet, so let me be the first: 1/5
     
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  23. Lance LaSalle

    Lance LaSalle TEFL Lord Thread Starter

    Location:
    Vsetin
    I gave it a 1.5! I reserve 1s for tracks I truly hate, things with no redeeming quality, like “Bull Session with Big Daddy.” the Finns have very few of those, really.
     
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  24. therunner

    therunner Forum Resident

    Location:
    England
    I certainly agree with you, so I think we must have a difference with our rating systems: mine is mainly relative to other Finn songs rather than relative to all music, because I generally love Finn stuff more than most other artists, so I would be giving nothing but 4s and 5s unless I factored in some relativity to other Finn songs. So my giving this a 1 definitely does not mean I think it's as bad as rap music or boybands, it just means that virtually any other Finn song is better (except maybe Kiss The Road Of Rarotonga).
     
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  25. Paul H

    Paul H Forum Resident

    Location:
    Nottingham, UK
    Ah, the first Finn Bros album... Can't wait to offer you all my revised running order. Wipes the floor with the genuine article. But you'll just have to be patient :)
     

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