Archive for the ‘Humour’ Category

The Ukes of Hazzard

Monday, September 27th, 2010

“There aren’t enough ukuleles on this blog.”  A thought that you, dear reader, have no doubt encountered while wending your way ‘twixt the fertile Shinypixel gardens.  The recent feature on an earnest web engineer extolling the virtues of a styling language may even have prompted it.

It indeed prompted me to dredge back through the last decade, to seek out a couple of US comedians from the turn of the millennium whose twangy comedic pop tickled fresh-faced Uni youngster Rik back in 2002.  The Ukes of Hazzard caused a minor Internet sensation with their unique take on traditional relationship problems;  their trick – singing wonkily atop the enthusiastic rattling of ukeleles – surpassed the desired randomness quotas of early web users and Warwick students alike.

The video sealed the deal.  Produced on a shoestring, with reams of digital production and a whole lot of love, it’s been viewed over 2 million times, which for something predating the YouTube generation by such a long chalk is quite an achievement:

The Ukes of Hazzard – Gay Boyfriend

Those were the days.

As a bizarre footnote, a UK CD single release popped up sometime around the death of pop music in 2004.  Autotuned and cruelly stripped of folksy instrumentation, its cookie-cutter bubblegum pop faded quickly out of the dying charts and into obscurity.  I picked up a copy in Oxfam on Portobello Road – I’m not overly surprised that no-one bought it.

(I’m out of ukelele-based anecdotes now.  I promise.)

CSS3, now with more ukuleles

Friday, September 24th, 2010

I think that this man deserves a little love.  You don’t hear much about Opera these days, which is strange given it’s often the best mobile/console browsing experiences available – even on platforms like Maemo where it’s not officially supported.

They also employ engineers that own ukuleles, and love the web so much that they compose songs about the new features in CSS3.

Next week, a checkout attendant sings a song about conveyor belts, backed by the Latvian Male Voice Choir.

Well Played, Sir

Thursday, January 28th, 2010

No idea who made this, but it is very funny:

MIHTEEL : The Bomb!

Monday, December 28th, 2009

(This is the 3rd in an occasional series of Music I Hate That Everyone Else Liked – guaranteed to make you want to hit me with your record box.  Enjoy!)

If there’s one word that can describe a lot of UK house music from the mid-90s, it’s flaccid.  Whilst European ravers pummelled their ears with the massively tuned kick-drums of gabber, British clubbers bopped apologetically to beats that wouldn’t burst a paper bag.  Leading this Charge of the Wet Brigade were The Bucketheads and their tedious anthem The Bomb!

Kenny Dope presents The Bucketheads – The Bomb! (These Sounds Fall Into My Mind)

Another grand example of house glued together with irritating sound-effects, The Bomb!‘s repertoire comprises some kind of alarm noise and a clipped sample of some yelping ladies, presumably excited by the tune’s unique percussive stylings of a haddock being slapped against a clothes-horse.  It’s the 9-minute version from the Positiva Classics series that’s forever etched on my brain; it’s not so much the eternal build-up that’s galling – though it’s bad enough – but the let-down when you get there.  4-or-so minutes of wiggling to a frenzied yet random arrangement of the aforementioned three samples should be paid off with a little more than a man with a bugle, and then some more of those three samples.  Not even a vocal lifted from Chicago can lift it for me, guys.  Sorry. Even after recent listening, why people ever liked this remains beyond me.

It’s not all bad news.  Michael Moog took the basic melodic idea, chucked out all the FX, added some more sensitive percussion and released a more satisfying albeit cocktail-loungey version in That Sound.  It has a chunkier if typical Full Intention remix-by-numbers on the flip and is generally worth seeking out if you’re desperate for some of this riff in your life.

Up, Down, Left, Right, A+Text

Thursday, December 17th, 2009

I wandered past an advert for the Sony Ericsson Jalou the other day.  Here’s a picture:


I can only assume that if you collect all 8 phone colours and get 50 text messages you’ll go bright yellow, your hair will stand on end and you can run around for the rest of the day making people explode until your battery runs out.