I recently wrote a post about Sandra Lou
and her yummilicious bubblegum pop hit "Banana Split
". and about how music today is just not fun anymore. Well, there is an exception
to every rule, and in this exception
I am talking about the exceptional
Australian group, the Grates
This band, and it's lead singer, Patience Hodgson, are quite different from Sandra Lou. Sandra Lou sounds hyper-rehearsed and studio tweaked, whereas Hodgson's voice is up and down and all over the place, always a heartbeat away from the false note that she never actually hits.
Sandra Lou is a one hit wonder, whereas the Grates have already had several minor hits, with the promise of more to come. Sandra Lou is all about a controlled environment, special lighting and minimalist art direction. The Grates are so busy laughing at themselves that the idea of that level of public relations and image control seems to be completely beyond them.
But Sandra Lou and the Grates do have something in common, enthusiasm.
The lead singer, Patience Hodgson, is a careening skyrocket of activity that bounces off the fourth wall every possible moment, both physically and vocally. The level of energy and optimism that she maintains is enough to fairy-tale float any weary heart. She just makes you want to dance and have fun! She is mirth personified, without a mean spirit or a negative thought to hamper the sheer high-on-pixie-dust tinkerbell qualities that she embraces.
, she twirls
, she claps
, she is 197 feet off the ground and climbing.
Her every movement is both effortless and unsteady, like a siren wearing a baby giraffe's overshoes. She is armed to the teeth with a frilly vintage tutu and a wickedly clumsy grin. She is the exact scientific definition of Angry Ballerina anti-matter
. She makes you want to just get up and do
something, but then you would have to take your eyes off her! Yipes!
When I first heard of this band it was through a photo I saw on a website, this one
as a matter of fact. At first glance I thought that it was a picture of someone falling. Then I thought maybe it was photoshopped. Finally it dawned on me - it was a picture of somebody having fun!
She catapulted into my heart from across the electronic divide, wearing little more than a green dress and the complete defiance of the laws gravity. I fell in love with her before I ever saw her face.
If you watch the their official video of their hit "Science is Golden
", and then compare it to this version of the same song
that is recorded live, you notice something very special about Hodgson, and the rest of the band. The don't have a pretentious bone in their bodies! They are just as goofy in either version! The are all just having fun mugging for the crowd, mugging for the camera, making faces at each other. These kids wouldn't know an overly-rehearsed moment if it bit them in their goofy smirks!
After all is said and done, Patience Hodgson looks completely unapproachable. She is the kind of girl you can only dream of from afar. A whiff of pixie dust and she is gone like the gossamer dew. A girl like that will forget you faster than she will lose your phone number.
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I kind of have a crush on the drummer, though.