Monday, November 4, 2013

Minnesota Week: Cows by The Suburbs

Welcome to Minnesota Week here on Another Flavor!

As I've mentioned before, I was not born in Minnesota and do not currently live there. I'm from there, though. I have a Minnesotan accent. I don't like confrontation. I try to remain polite to people while avoiding talking to them. I consider telling someone else how I'm feeling a violent act, similar to walking up behind him and strangling him with piano wire. So I feel a special connection to the music and music videos of Minnesotan acts. As a result, I'll be writing about Minnesotan music videos all this week.

What is a Minnesotan music video? First of all, I'd like to clarify what I mean by a Minnesotan musical act. Bob Dylan is not a Minnesotan musical act. Yes, he was born and raised there and "the place that [he comes] from is called the Midwest", but he moved to New York to start his career and become famous. He does not count. You wouldn't consider Guns 'N' Roses an Indiana band, would you? I'm only talking about bands and acts who stayed in Minnesota. Maybe they eventually bought a house in LA or something, but if they had their initial hits while in Minnesota then I count them. Look at Prince. I mean, look at him:

He is a huge star, but when he made a movie he filmed and recorded it in Minnesota, primarily at famed Minneapolis club First Avenue. He is as Minnesotan as they get. I'm not sure if I'll be able to write about Prince this week, though, because all the videos of his I found on YouTube are of terrible quality. Even worse than the videos I normally write about. Sorry dudes. Someday.

Who I will be talking about is The Suburbs. The Suburbs are a New Wave band. This means that they are a little bit punk, a little bit pop, and a whole lot of synthesizers. They have an amazing logo:

Their music is so potent that Arcade Fire named an album after them and it won a Grammy. They aren't remembered much today outside of Minnesota. That is the case with most of the bands I'll discuss this week. People in Minnesota have a great love of Minnesotans, though. What is the only state that Walter Mondale took during the 1984 presidential election? His home state of Minnesota. And no one likes Walter Mondale. That's how much Minnesotans like Minnesotans. So we keep the memory of The Suburbs alive.

Check out their video for Cows:

I apologize for the low quality, but that's what happens when you are remembering bands that were never very popular from the 1980's.

I think we can all agree that this song is awesome. "I like cows and they like me." That sums up most of my feelings. Also, it is a metaphor for something. Probably US foreign policy in Iran. Or possibly the increasingly ridiculous variety of ice cream flavors. I mean, it shouldn't take me literally 20 minutes to figure out which ice cream to buy. I'm paralyzed by choice. It makes me so mad!

The video opens with the band in full New Wave synth mode.

They quickly add the punk, though.

Look at that guitar player's face! He is shocked that they have begun rocking out.

The band rocks in front of their amazing logo.

The drummer is wearing a tie that is so thin it might accidentally be one of those Texas things that pretends it is a tie but isn't.

We see the singer in front of a cow. He is like a New Wave Minnesotan Elvis.

As the gods of Minnesota demand, he is blond. The gods of New Wave demand the ridiculous hair style. But the Elvis is still clearly there.

Do you see it?

Since the song is called Cows, the band recreates their logo with a cow theme.

Look at them, seriously standing there holding their meat.

Where the hell are they filming that? It seems bleak. Must be Minnesota.

There is a guitar solo.

The video ends with some comments about Cows' skinny feet.

Why would a band make a song about Cows and make this video about it? Remember what I said about Minnesotans and talking about feelings? This is the best we can do. You have to read between the lines a little bit here. The Suburbs are lonely. They don't say that they are lonely, but when you talk so much about how cows are your friends it is pretty clear that you have no human friends. Also, they don't really like cows that much. They didn't take the time to learn about them so they don't even know the word "hooves" and instead refer to "skinny feet". They need our love. I am prepared to give it to them.

Join me tomorrow as Minnesota Week continues here at Another Flavor!


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