Thursday, 11 January 2018

2017 Latecomers: Get Malled By Fred

Ooh look, another new feature. Well, not that new: I did something similar last year. Basically, good albums from the year just gone which may well have featured in My Top 17 of 2017... if I'd heard them in time. Let's see how many I discover this year...

Back in the early 00s when my indie cred was at its highest (not very) and I could easily have written a blog that would have been respected and lauded by the cool muso blogosphere (yeah, right), rather than laughed at and shunned (I did still like Billy Joel back then, I just kept quiet about it), I was quite into Fred Thomas's lofi indie soul band, Saturday Looks Good To Me. I'm sure you'll remember them if you were cool back in 2000. (Typically, this was about 6 years before I started my first blog. Always too late.)

Since then, the band and their lead singer have rather slipped off my radar... until my still much-cooler pal Steve recommended Fred's latest offering, Changer. It's an interesting change of direction (though there's probably been a gradual evolution while I've been away) to a more guitar led sound reminiscent in places of Green-era REM, Pavement, Jonathan Richman... maybe even a little Kozelek. I dunno, it probably sounds like a bunch of other things entirely to you. But it's worth a listen. Love the way the guitar really kicks in around the 50 second mark.

Oh, and it's another great mid-life crisis song too...
Does something feel slower?
Or is this just the same daydreamed death where you see yourself lowered
Into the cold, greedy ground as your parents and plagiarists lose their shit
Sobbing over your casket
And you broadcast it every couple of hours
When you’re not busy with customers
Selling cell phone cases and cords at that kiosk in the middle of the mall

Air-conditioned days in this insufferable summer
And at night you watch your friends dance around
Feeling weird about fucking each other
And you wonder “Do I even need to be here?” and “Why does this hurt?”

The rest of the album's not bad either. Listen and like.


  1. New to me. I very, very much approve of this.

  2. Like Martin, new to me. Any idea what is considered Fred Thomas' best song/album?
    Nice song, the guitar at 0.50 I agree is pleasing, reminds me of the distorted intro of Garbage's song Vow

    1. Not sure I'm a big enough expert to answer that, Chris, but this one is pretty fine.

    2. He's absurdly prolific and pops up all over the place. I'd agree with Rol that 'Changer's is probably a good starting point and that you could track back from there. Kuma is a pretty good one as well.

      You can probably listen to snippets and find out more at

      For Saturday Looks Good To Me, their most recent album (One Kiss Ends It All) is pretty ace.

    3. Thanks for the suggestions Steve!

  3. The moniker Saturday Looks Good To Me lurks somewhere in the foggy mists of my memory, but I couldn't tell you what they sounded like. I'm tempted to go back and check them out after hearing this though - it's very good.

  4. I enjoyed that, thanks. Love the way it builds up and the vocal gets angrier - it reminds me of something else which I just can't place at the moment (perhaps very slightly - only really in that particular aspect - of Scars 'Your Attention Please'?) Also the guitar theme and how it changes to strings.
    I don't recall Saturday Looks Good To Me at all!

    1. Just had to hear it again. Hooked!

    2. Then my work here is done.

    3. It reminds me a little of 'Popular' by Nada Surf. Not so much in the song structure but the vocal delivery, and the way it gets angrier as it goes along.


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