Daily Mael 1981

Whomp That Sucker

Intended as the opening theme to a TV show called The Oblongs but never used. ‘High affabilty/low flexibility’ and suchlike. Harmless nonsense.

Only heard a rough recording of this which I’m guessing is the Metallic Clang version. Interesting, but indistinct. Never heard the smooth version.

Proper glam stomper. Gotta love the cheeky way Russell introduces himself. What a treat. Full in your face, joyful celebration of wackiness with a total disregard of nuanced wit: ‘All they like is sex and sitcoms. Try to be suave, they’ll kick you in the bonbons.’

Uber dramatic intro into a simply splendidly camp tirade. The repetition of the title in a whiny voice gives the song its main motivating motif, with a strained high voice adding extra incredulity about all these pretenders to the original’s ‘Nastassianic ways.’

Nice sharp clipped piano and guitars here. It’s a competent little tune but you keep expecting it to develop into something else, to fly off on a tangent or add extra layers but it just soldiers on. In a good way. Health and Safety before Health and Safety was a thing.

Apt plodding drums and guitar riff, echoing the rhinos and hippos in the song. Well daft story about said bulky animals coming home for dinner, compared to the hunter coming home to his unfaithful wife. Quite.

Sound effects a go go with quack quacks and moos. It’s great fun though. I don’t know if the willys is a purely British expression, but in Sparks hands it’s described beautifully. As it says in the song, ‘It’s hard to explain. Like Citizen Kane to someone who’s blind.’

Built around some simple piano chord changes that never gives up. No fat on these bones. Even the guitar solo fits beautifully. Yet another great pop song with unforgettable hooks. Plus, the rhyming of ‘Martian’ with ‘different’ is quite a feat in itself.

Brilliant stuff with all the glam trappings. Damned exciting and those drums and handclaps are the icing on the delicious cake. Got a Devo like vibe to it and makes you want to move. All about the brain and how it’s crammed with creative/murderous possibilities.

The sound and feel is reminiscent of Kimono era Sparks – the falsetto is certainly prominent as is the quickening change. The whole gamut of emotions is run through from panic, through fear, hate, envy and resentment. I like how he tells himself to calm down, realising he’s getting hysterical and the sudden turnaround from ‘Never will I look at another girl’ to ‘Hey wait, here she is.’

Another straight ahead chugger with an addictive chorus. The perils of plastic surgery given a unique twist in that the protagonist prefers to have a flawed, more human, ‘funny’ face than a smooth unnatural mask. And that’s an…er… interesting video.

Tip top punchy good time pop song. Has many of the ingredients of a classic Sparks tune, including crisp production, high pitched catchy chorus and hilarious lyrics with a touch of polyester: ‘Do I look so knowing and old and wise? Maybe it’s those Dacron ties.’









1967 – 1969