Posts Tagged ‘Soft Cell’

Tune du Jour: “Paranoid” – Black Sabbath
THE CLASH of Cover Tunes: Ruder Than You vs. Soft Cell
Peruse, Comment and Vote (I Beseech, Implore and Urge Thee, respectively)
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Paranoid was released in 1970 on Black Sabbath’s second album, which was also titled Paranoid. The song’s popularity in the US started slowly – reaching only as high as number 61 on the U.S. Billboard Hot 100 – but built over time as album rock radio stations played it incessantly. On the other hand, the U.K. fell in love with it immediately.  Paranoid reached number four on the U.K. Singles Chart in 1970 and, amazingly, appeared on that same chart again in 1980, breaking into the Top 20. In fact, unlike the U.S., Paranoid was an immediate success throughout Europe and South Africa. 

Broccoli For Miles And Miles And Miles And Miles And Miles ... Oh Yeah!

Broccoli For Miles
And Miles And Miles
And Miles And Miles …
Oh Yeah!

Among Paranoid’s awards:

1976, NME (United Kingdom) ranked it number 41 on their All Time Top 100 Singles list.

1989, Spin (United States) ranked it number 81 on their 100 Greatest Singles of All Time list.

1989, Radio Veronica (Netherlands) ranked it number 16 on their Super All-Time List.

1994, the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame (United States) named it to their The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame’s 500 Songs that Shaped Rock and Roll list.

1998, Guitarist (United Kingdom) ranked it number 84 on their Top 100 Guitar Solos of All-Time list.

2004, Rolling Stone (United States) ranked it number 250 on their 500 Greatest Songs of All Time list.

2004, Q (United Kingdom) named it to their 1010 Songs You Must Own! list.

2006, Q ranked it number 100 on their 100 Greatest Songs of All Time list.

2006, VH1 (United States) ranked it number 34 on their 40 Greatest Metal Songs list.

2008, VH1 ranked it number 4 on their 100 Greatest Hard Rock Songs list.

Paranoid is generally thought of as Black Sabbath’s crowning achievement. Yet, it almost did not come to be. According to Black Sabbath’s bass player, Geezer Butler:

“A lot of the Paranoid album was written around the time of our first album,Black Sabbath. We recorded the whole thing in about 2 or 3 days, live in the studio. The song Paranoid was written as an afterthought. We basically needed a 3 minute filler for the album, and Tony came up with the riff. I quickly did the lyrics, and Ozzy was reading them as he was singing.”

And that my friends is how you compose a heavy metal anthem! Can you imagine a world without Paranoid?

The Original

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Black Sabbath:

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THE CLASH of Cover Tunes

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Ruder Than You vs. Soft Cell
Ruder Than You:

Ruder Than You holds the distinction of being CMI’s Reigning Exultant Virtuosic Performer of “Paranoid”. Additionally, Ruder Than You is also a recipient of CMI’s universally coveted title of Uni-Victor Melodious Maximus in Adversarial Replication. Among the title’s myriad of rewards and benefits, perhaps most desirous is that it bestows upon the recipient the eminently yearned for privilege of having one’s name appear in print media in bold orange!

Ruder Than You’s triumph in CMI’s THE CLASH of Cover Tunes competition is detailed below:

11/6/2013 – “Paranoid” (Black Sabbath) – Ruder Than You (71%) expunge The Dickies (29%)

Soft Cell:

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Oh the disharmony! Much like Harlan County there are no neutrals here. Only one cover tune will live to play another day and it is your solemn responsibility to decide which one prevails. So tell me … Which Side Are You On?!!?

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Votes can be cast up to three months from the day and time of the original post.

Disclaimer: Votes cast from Florida may or may not be counted.

Tune du Jour: “Tainted Love” – Gloria Jones
THE CLASH of Cover Tunes: Finger vs. The Lost Fingers
Peruse, Comment and Vote (I Beseech, Implore and Urge Thee, respectively)
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"Free markets will not prevail without unfettered competition among cover songs." - Milton Friedbyrd

“Free markets will not prevail without unfettered competition among cover songs.” – Milton Friedbyrd

Tainted Love was written by Ed Cobb and originally recorded by Gloria Jones in 1965 as the B-side to the 1965 single My Bad Boy’s Comin’ Home. The single was a commercial flop, failing to chart in either the US or the UK. In 1973, almost a decade after its initial release, British club DJ Richard Searling purchased a copy of the single while on a trip to the United States. Searling introduced the song to the UK club scene, which embraced its Motown-influenced sound and eminent danceability. Due to the newfound underground popularity of the song, Jones re-recorded Tainted Love in 1976 and released it as a single, but that version also failed to chart.

English vocal-and-synth duo Soft Cell (i.e. Marc Almond and David Ball), became aware of the song through its notoriety as a UK club cult hit, and recorded a drastically different arrangement in 1981. Due to the then-dominant synthpop sound of the time, Soft Cell’s version of Tainted Love rapidly reached #1 on the UK singles chart and was 1981’s best-selling single in the UK. On January 16, 1982, Tainted Love charted in the US, entering the Billboard Hot 100 at #90. It appeared to peak at #64 before falling to #100 on February 27. However, after spending a second week at #100, it started climbing again and 19 weeks later it cracked the US Top 40. The song eventually reached #8 in the US and spent a then record-breaking 43 weeks on the Billboard Hot 100.

The Original

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Gloria Jones:

Great version of the song. A real shame Jones never charted with it.

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The Most Popular

Soft Cell:

Wildly popular yet, in my mind, dreadful when compared to Gloria Jones’ original version.

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THE CLASH of Cover Tunes

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Finger vs. The Lost Fingers

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Finger:

The Lost Fingers:

For those interested, The Lost Fingers’ studio version of Tainted Love is also available on YouTube but, despite the occasional annoying static pops, I love this live version:

Oh the disharmony! Much like Harlan County there are no neutrals here. Only one cover tune will live to play another day and it is your solemn responsibility to decide which one prevails. So tell me … Which Side Are You On?!!?

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Votes can be cast up to seven days from the day and time of the original post.

Disclaimer: Votes cast from Florida may or may not be counted.