Friday, November 18, 2005

Ditty Bops- Live and shimmying

Sonically, they're an old-timey version of the Roches but Cali duo the Ditty Bops don't leave it at that. A tomboy (lesbian?) undercurrent and cartoonish ultra-violent videos are also part of their M.O. and good for them. They're not too cutesy about their conceit and they obviously have a lot of fun with what they do, which counts for a lot. Abbey is the health and nature nut (note the girls biking on the photo here) and Amanda's got the comedy and modelling background, both useful things in this biz. On a Conan O'Brien appearance, they dressed like dime-store flappers and looked great. God knows why Warner Bros. thought them bankable but bless 'em for signing them up.

After their 2004 debut comes this little 3-song EP featuring their nifty unplugged sound. The first song mentions bikes again and wonders "why can't white people sing the blues?" before mooning over lost love and the autumn. On the wistful "Gentle Sheep," they dream of staying up late and watching TV- you can tell that they're not modern adolescents though 'cause they don't mention Playstation. Pre-war standard "Sister Kate" (a pre-diva and jazz favorite) finishes things off, taken at comparitively break-neck speed, with time for piano and fiddle breaks though you miss the visuals where they obviously ham it up for a crowd.

Listen to the whole thing at Napster: Live EP


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