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674556 Posts in 27222 Topics by 4010 Members - Latest Member: angleofreason May 21, 2022, 02:48:36 PM
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Author Topic: Pitchfork.com roundtable on Pet Sounds' 50th  (Read 5295 times)
Cyncie
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« Reply #25 on: April 12, 2016, 07:37:18 PM »

That was odd.  I don't expect everyone to be as blown away by Pet Sounds as we are, but when you're reading a piece about artists "paying tribute" to the album, you kind of expect them to actually, you know, pay tribute.  With actual well informed opinions.

Oh well.
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Rick5150
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« Reply #26 on: April 13, 2016, 02:14:42 AM »

Quote
Larkin Grimm
I love "Caroline No" in particular, even if it's a little anti-feminist; just the idea that a woman could be ruined, that innocence and naivety are the most attractive qualities, that cutting her hair short and getting practical and real and wise would render her unlovable. But I love that song anyway.

Wow. Not sure he is listening to the same song as the one on my album. That is not what that song says at all.  Huh
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Fire Wind
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« Reply #27 on: April 13, 2016, 05:48:52 AM »

She is listening to the same song.  Not a surprising point of view.
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Debbie KL
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« Reply #28 on: April 13, 2016, 06:32:27 AM »

She is listening to the same song.  Not a surprising point of view.

It's not odd that this woman would love the song but wonder if the blame unjustly fell on the female.  This song is so powerful in that it really captures the loss of sweetness and joy in a relationship.  Brian obviously wrote it from a man's point of view.  The woman's view is the same loss, but a different perspective.  I think Brian so beautifully captured the helplessness that both people feel when the magic is over that it grabs the listener in that way.  It's that point at which people decide whether to make it a real relationship and revive the romance when they can, or go off to find another fleeting thrill of romance, or a better match in reality.

Brian has never been afraid to take on the most intense human emotions in his music for people to listen and heal.  I've noticed all the comments on "Last Song" over the past year.  Many people haven't yet integrated what the music was saying, due to its intensity.  He's still doing that intense musical healing for people today.
« Last Edit: April 13, 2016, 06:36:03 AM by Debbie KL » Logged
Rick5150
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« Reply #29 on: April 14, 2016, 02:09:41 AM »

Thank you DebbieKL. It is interesting to realize that the male/female perspective gives the song a different meaning.

The song is so heart-achingly beautiful and perfectly constructed (like the rest of the album) that we can insert our own personal experiences, loves and losses into it and come away with an interpretation that works best for us.

I always looked at the song like this:

Two former lovers meet again and he notices that she has matured and is not young and innocent anymore - like she still is in his memories. Brian assumes that she has lost her 'glow' because a lover after him did not treat her right and took that look that he loved away. Because she was not treated well, she is more hardened or cynical now, and he is saddened by this.

It was never literally "why did you cut your hair," but Brian noticing things have changed - and shorter hair is an easy change to notice. The long hair is a metaphor for youth, a carefree life and hope and to have that back would make him happy.

I will never hear that song and interpret it to mean that cutting her hair made her unlovable. It removes the loneliness and longing (and hope) from the song and replaces it with negative feelings toward her.
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Matt Bielewicz
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« Reply #30 on: April 14, 2016, 05:15:58 AM »

I did smile at Yuka Honda's comments. "The six bar intro of “Don’t Talk (Put Your Head on My Shoulder)” is worth a thousand books. I consider it to be one of the greatest chord changes ever written."

Surely she (not he) merely means "the first six bars"! It's just oddly worded. And it is a fabulous sequence of chords...

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Yuka_Honda

Oops - that's totally my bad on Yuka Honda, assuming she was a he. I only just saw this, having not been back into this thread for a while. That was stupid of me, and I should have checked. Feel a bit embarrassed now...!

And yeah, I guess she just meant 'the start of the song' when she said 'intro'.

At least there's no debate about the quality of the 'Don't Talk...' chords. I think everyone here is probably agreed that it's one of Brian's most amazing works. It might even be my favourite song of his ever, in terms of being a groundbreaking, original-sounding composition that is also intensely beautiful and very skilled at conveying some really deep, complex emotions.

He and Tony *really* hit it out of the park with Don't Talk, IMHO.
« Last Edit: April 14, 2016, 05:18:31 AM by Matt Bielewicz » Logged
HeyJude
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« Reply #31 on: April 15, 2016, 08:07:24 AM »

I've played a plethora of BB songs to females, and sometimes their perspective is interesting. Accusations of being sexist or anti-feminist are not 100% unfounded. A lot of times it requires some context to understand. In some cases, it only comes out that way because, obviously, they're singing from the male perspective.

One woman I played "This Whole World" to really didn't like the "when girls get mad at boys and go, many times they're just putting on a show." Out of a context, even in an amazing musical piece like that, that one line does kinda a sound a bit d**kish. My contention is that that is *sometimes* true, and guys do the same thing. But because it's from the male perspective, he's not going to take every line and point out that guys do it too. And the very next line points out that the outcome is the guy is left alone, so clearly his perspective left him alone. He maybe gets his comeuppance for thinking the girls just "put on a show."

And one can't ever fully defend the guys that released "Hey Little Tomboy."

I think that objectively, some BB lyrics can mean different things (e.g. Brian is a sexist a-hole for making a big issue out of a woman cutting her hair), but especially when analyzing Brian's creation and *his* perspective, more context makes it less inflammatory. Maybe he's obsessing over the woman in the song changing, but that doesn't preclude Brian, or the "speaker" in the song, being in the wrong for obsessing or being too picky or misconstruing the nature of the relationship in the first place, etc.
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Emily
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« Reply #32 on: April 15, 2016, 08:20:19 AM »

I've played a plethora of BB songs to females, and sometimes their perspective is interesting. Accusations of being sexist or anti-feminist are not 100% unfounded. A lot of times it requires some context to understand. In some cases, it only comes out that way because, obviously, they're singing from the male perspective.

One woman I played "This Whole World" to really didn't like the "when girls get mad at boys and go, many times they're just putting on a show." Out of a context, even in an amazing musical piece like that, that one line does kinda a sound a bit d**kish. My contention is that that is *sometimes* true, and guys do the same thing. But because it's from the male perspective, he's not going to take every line and point out that guys do it too. And the very next line points out that the outcome is the guy is left alone, so clearly his perspective left him alone. He maybe gets his comeuppance for thinking the girls just "put on a show."

And one can't ever fully defend the guys that released "Hey Little Tomboy."

I think that objectively, some BB lyrics can mean different things (e.g. Brian is a sexist a-hole for making a big issue out of a woman cutting her hair), but especially when analyzing Brian's creation and *his* perspective, more context makes it less inflammatory. Maybe he's obsessing over the woman in the song changing, but that doesn't preclude Brian, or the "speaker" in the song, being in the wrong for obsessing or being too picky or misconstruing the nature of the relationship in the first place, etc.
I think there are some misunderstandings here: first, when people point out that something is sexist, they very often do not mean to imply that the person who said it is an a*hole although often the person who said it feels insulted, but the purpose is usually, unless the person who said has been shown to be persistent and aggressive about it, to get people to think about the fact that our cultural training results in all of us having sexist views and here's an example. I think that most sexism is unintended and says nothing about the speaker other than he/she hasn't learned to question their received notions.
Secondly, regarding "My contention is that that is *sometimes* true, and guys do the same thing." Sexism frequently takes the form of taking behaviors that are sometimes true about the population at large and making them out to be particularly female; this has occurred because men have typically been the generators of cultural attitudes. So, if a subset of men and women manipulate and 'use' the people they are in relationships with, for example, it becomes a cultural meme that it's a 'typical' female behavior because it's men making the meme.
« Last Edit: April 15, 2016, 08:24:42 AM by Emily » Logged
HeyJude
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« Reply #33 on: April 15, 2016, 08:34:07 AM »

I've played a plethora of BB songs to females, and sometimes their perspective is interesting. Accusations of being sexist or anti-feminist are not 100% unfounded. A lot of times it requires some context to understand. In some cases, it only comes out that way because, obviously, they're singing from the male perspective.

One woman I played "This Whole World" to really didn't like the "when girls get mad at boys and go, many times they're just putting on a show." Out of a context, even in an amazing musical piece like that, that one line does kinda a sound a bit d**kish. My contention is that that is *sometimes* true, and guys do the same thing. But because it's from the male perspective, he's not going to take every line and point out that guys do it too. And the very next line points out that the outcome is the guy is left alone, so clearly his perspective left him alone. He maybe gets his comeuppance for thinking the girls just "put on a show."

And one can't ever fully defend the guys that released "Hey Little Tomboy."

I think that objectively, some BB lyrics can mean different things (e.g. Brian is a sexist a-hole for making a big issue out of a woman cutting her hair), but especially when analyzing Brian's creation and *his* perspective, more context makes it less inflammatory. Maybe he's obsessing over the woman in the song changing, but that doesn't preclude Brian, or the "speaker" in the song, being in the wrong for obsessing or being too picky or misconstruing the nature of the relationship in the first place, etc.
I think there are some misunderstandings here: first, when people point out that something is sexist, they very often do not mean to imply that the person who said is an a*hole no know that often the person who said it feels insulted, but the purpose is usually, unless the person who said has been shown to be persistent and aggressive about it, to get people to think about the fact that our cultural training results in all of us having sexist views and here's an example. I think that most sexism is unintended and says nothing about the speaker other than he/she hasn't learned to question their received notions.
Secondly, regarding "My contention is that that is *sometimes* true, and guys do the same thing." Sexism frequently takes the form of taking behaviors that are sometimes true about the population at large and making them out to be particularly female; this has occurred because men have typically been the generators of cultural attitudes. So, if a subset of men and women manipulate and 'use' the people they are in relationships with, for example, it becomes a cultural meme that it's a 'typical' female behavior because it's men making the meme.


Sure. All potentially valid points. This is a huge, complicated topic that extends far outside of the BBs, and even far outside the particular topic of "sexism" and gets into criticism of criticism itself, the question of how much we need to parse the meaning or vibe of 60s (and beyond) lyrics written by guys that culturally were probably not all the most progressive guys of their era, and so on.

I mean, they did "Hey Little Tomboy" in 1976 and released it in 1978; that's the f-ed up beauty of this band, I'm not sure whether that means I should be harder on them, or give them a pass because the song is so over-the-top awkward and inappropriate that they clearly were ignorant as to how it could be perceived.  

My main point was simply that if, and I emphasize only *if*, there are folks that are completely incredulous as to why someone would take away from certain BB songs something they might construe as sexist or anti-feminist, I think there is plenty of room to make that argument.

For me, sometimes all of the context makes the lyrics palatable or even enjoyable, and occasionally (not even particularly with the BB specifically), certain lyrics are difficult to overlook, for a variety of reasons including and in addition to anything related to feminism (or lack thereof).

I love the BB car songs, but I've never been a fan of the "I've got the fastest car and therefore the biggest d**k" bravado stuff. I think some people would have found that kind of douchey back then as they might now.

I've always had trouble with Brian's achingly beautiful "Still I Dream of It" because he references having a maid in the midst of lamenting various things in his life. How bad should I feel for a guy that can afford a maid? Poor baby, must be tough having someone cook your food and clean your house for you. Is that missing the point? Yes. But we all put our own template on this stuff.
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« Reply #34 on: April 15, 2016, 08:35:57 AM »

Totally agree
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