And they wonder why we never buy music anymore...
April 8, 2004 6:13 AM   Subscribe

How you remind me of someday. What you are hearing is Nickelback's "Someday" in your left speaker and "How you remind me in the right". All of those left shocked please raise their hands.
posted by jon_kill (62 comments total)
Being a bit of a double poster, I'm proud to say I searched for the following terms: nickelback, someday, how you, remind me, how you remind me, mp3, ultimatemetal, left speaker, left channel, right speaker, right channel...

Also, move my quote back a few words. Mentally. In your mind.
posted by jon_kill at 6:24 AM on April 8, 2004

Neat post - where did you find this out?
posted by Ryvar at 6:27 AM on April 8, 2004

Ryvar: Guy at work.
posted by jon_kill at 6:29 AM on April 8, 2004

Very cool. Thanks!
posted by internal at 6:30 AM on April 8, 2004

Okay. I know, it's cool to pick on the pop-rock bands like NickelBack. For my part, I smile to imagine the grimacey-rictus of Chad Kroeger every time I hear him vocally emote. Ah, the angst of suburbia!

But come on ... this is just a bad mashup of the singled-out vocals from "Someday" dropped on the full-track of "How You Remind Me." The beat stops matching about ten seconds in and after the chorus it just becomes annoying. Of course, the phrasing is the same because they're by a band with a limited technical scope, but to say that the two songs are mirror-images is unfair.
posted by grabbingsand at 6:36 AM on April 8, 2004

Newsflash: Formulaic crap indeed formulaic!
posted by turaho at 6:37 AM on April 8, 2004

GrabbingSand: wow, somebody actually defended them.
posted by jon_kill at 6:39 AM on April 8, 2004

It's an interesting effect, but it verifies something I guess we already knew: Nickelback writes all of their tunes as mid-tempo rockers in the same key. It begs a philosophical question, however: is a band still considered a one-hit wonder when their follow up hit or hits are essentially the same songs re-written?

Is the line of angsty warbly tenors from Eddie Vedder to Gavin Rossdale to Scott Weiland to that fat guy from Staind to Chad Kroeger unbroken?
posted by psmealey at 6:39 AM on April 8, 2004

The same thing done to Linkin Park (though not as good).
posted by mr.marx at 6:39 AM on April 8, 2004

Double Post!

Ok, just kidding with you, jon_kill...
posted by PigAlien at 6:40 AM on April 8, 2004

It's two bland tastes that taste bland together!
posted by Johnny Assay at 6:41 AM on April 8, 2004

Okay. On a second listen, the vocals aren't isolated. But even still, you could do the same thing with almost any post-alt pop-rock track. Linkin Park is just ripe for this kind of comparison. But I still say that what you're hearing is not blatant recycling, but just numbing banality.
posted by grabbingsand at 6:44 AM on April 8, 2004

If it ain't broke, don't fix it. It might get boring, but it still works. I'd much rather have crappy creativity than the same song over and over. But then again, I like Weezer.

I wonder how many of their songs you can do that with...

Math Rock indeed.
posted by sciurus at 6:46 AM on April 8, 2004

I'm not familiar with the band or the songs in question, but I actually liked the combined songs (one in each ear) better than I liked either one by itself. Interesting.
posted by tdismukes at 6:49 AM on April 8, 2004

GrabbingSand: Yeah, I never said they were mirror images. No one could be that dumb. THey are close enough as to make me want to puke with hilarity.

Weezer are nowhere near math-rock. Polvo, North of America, THe Plan, Weight's and Measures, etc... now they are math-rock. Weezer just kinda plain suck. Don' let the horn-rims fool you.
posted by jon_kill at 6:52 AM on April 8, 2004

Weezer: Crappy Creativity. That pretty much sums it up.

ducks to avoid impending curses from the weezer-heads.
posted by grabbingsand at 6:54 AM on April 8, 2004

My hand is raised, jon_kill.

Has anyone come across something like this with two different bands? I would imagine it wouldn't be that difficult to find.
posted by footballrabi at 7:06 AM on April 8, 2004

I still hold that Weezer's first and second albums are more than listenable. So there! Seriously though, it's the same old saw - "the music from when I was in highschool is obviously superior!" There's nothing wrong with liking the music you grew up with, although any 20-25 year old caught listening to Nickelback (or fitty cen') I find suspect.

I thought this mp3 was pretty hilarious - I mean, the beats don't exactly match, but the sort of angsty heavy-riffs sections match up pretty exactly and the stuff inbetween is mostly indistinguishable. Not surprising, no, but still funny.
posted by kavasa at 7:09 AM on April 8, 2004

And furthermore! at the end of the day, I doubt Nickelback and Weezer give a shit what we say, if our words somehow manage to reach them in their giant mansions hand-built in the Himalayas or whereever they are.
posted by kavasa at 7:12 AM on April 8, 2004

What tdismukes said.

Since the instrumentals don't interfere with each other, it's interesting to hear the guitar and drums pause in one ear but continue on the other. I also like how I can either get the effect of two vocal tracks at the same time, or specifically listen to one side or the other to pick it up more clearly and kinda tune out the other.
posted by thebabelfish at 7:15 AM on April 8, 2004

Well, footballrabi, off the top of my head there's Joan Osborne's "What if God Was One of Us" vs. Sarah McLachlan's "Building a Mystery."
posted by emelenjr at 7:23 AM on April 8, 2004

thebabelfish, that's selective hearing. See also the famous "cocktail party" situation.
posted by shoepal at 7:24 AM on April 8, 2004

All of The Spin Doctors catalog can be sung to "Sweet Home Alabama"
posted by crunchburger at 7:40 AM on April 8, 2004

The fact that Nickelback doesn't care what we say has nothing to do with the fact that they are a 4th generation copy grunge band that absolutely sucks.

But what the hell, I didn't know any better when I was a pre-teen either (when I listened to Foghat and Foreigner), so I guess their fans deserve a break.
posted by psmealey at 8:00 AM on April 8, 2004

It goes to show that the value of a solid drummer who can play faithfully to a click track can't be overestimated.

And if anyone's surprised at the poor quality of their songs, turn off your commercial radio and go see a live band. Any live band. You'll be better for it.
posted by chicobangs at 8:03 AM on April 8, 2004

"I'm not familiar with the band or the songs in question"

Thank god I'm not the only one. These two songs are about as similar as they can be without being identical. Tempo, key, progression, mix, arrangement, everything.

posted by Outlawyr at 8:12 AM on April 8, 2004

there is a lot of cross-channel bleed from the right side into the left. I think that emphasises the similarities in the instrumental arrangement. It is not two purely isolated tracks.

it does seem that they are in the same tempo (exactly) key and structure. almost like they went back and reworked the protools session for the one song to make the other.

I thought that electronic musicians were the only ones that did that!
posted by n9 at 8:21 AM on April 8, 2004

Is twice the NickleBack a DimeBack?

Seriously, the comparison is pretty sad. It reminds me of Rush. I have a suspicion that Rush wrote all of their songs over the course of a three day weekend from high school and have just been staggering the release of them over the last few decades. You talk about no artistic progression, and I think of Rush.

Even with the songs played together, I still don't care much for the band.
posted by DragonBoy at 8:24 AM on April 8, 2004

I remember one of the first songs (maybe *the* first song) on "Gish" being totally identical to a song on "Nothing's Shocking", but I can't remember the names of either of them.
posted by interrobang at 8:29 AM on April 8, 2004

there is a lot of cross-channel bleed from the right side into the left.

The person who mixed this probably used headphones. Hard left/right panning works fine when you're listening on monitors, since the channel separation is imperfect and both ears hear a little of each other's sound, but it tends to make your head hurt when you hear a sound through *only* one ear.
posted by Mars Saxman at 8:39 AM on April 8, 2004

n9: there is no difference between an electronic musician and a rock "musician" going to ProTools, other than the fact that what the former is doing is appropriate and what the latter is doing is probably garbage.

Vive l'analog.
posted by jon_kill at 8:46 AM on April 8, 2004

Has anyone come across something like this with two different bands?

footballrabi, I haven't actually done the experiment, but I'm pretty certain that Oasis' "Cigarettes and Alcohol" and T. Rex's "Bang A Gong (Get It On)" would sync up quite cleanly.

I smile to imagine the grimacey-rictus of Chad Kroeger every time I hear him vocally emote. Ah, the angst of suburbia!

For the record, Chad & Co. are actually from a podunk little prairie town called Hanna, Alberta, which means they're as closely related to the Shaggs as they are to city boys like Vedder. It almost makes you want to forgive their staggering tunelessness.


(Also: The Shaggs rule!)
posted by gompa at 8:46 AM on April 8, 2004

OT: the best smashup I have heard to date was the Stooges "No Fun" mixed with Salt 'n' Pepa's "Push It". A google search turns up nothing, but I'll see if I can post it somewhere later on.
posted by psmealey at 8:53 AM on April 8, 2004

jon_kill: North of America, THe Plan

Wow, Halifax bands on Metafilter. Who'da thunk it.
posted by loukas_c at 8:55 AM on April 8, 2004

btw, as an active recording musician, I love analog too, jon_kill, I just can't friggin' afford it! LogicAudio has been a lifesaver in terms of recording and producing my and other bands demos for the past few years... if I ever get the record deal, we'll go reel-to-reel at the Power Station, but until then, my digital setup at home suits me just fine.
posted by psmealey at 8:59 AM on April 8, 2004

i can 'sound' more analog with digital than with analog. to get an analog recording rig that would have better sounding biasing and compression than what I use to record would cost more than $150,000. My rig cost me about $2500.

PSP Audioware's Vintagewarmer, Mixpressor and MasterQ along with Antares Tube and some software from OhmForce and the like give one a lot of flexibility and dirt, and that's just the beginning. Analog fidelity can be accomplished in the digital domain no problem. UAD's emulation of $20,000 - $80,000 vintage tube compressors is generally held to be all by indistinguishable from the originals at a cost of less than $1000 for a whole arsenal of them. The sweetest (and most $$$) kind of analog *presence* is still a ways off.... maybe.

But these songs would sound flat and trite no matter what you did with them.

It is easy to discount digital audio processing in a knee-jerk kind of way, but you shouldn't, imo.
posted by n9 at 9:12 AM on April 8, 2004

posted by Satapher at 10:17 AM on April 8, 2004

i've got a feeling that andrew w.k.'s "party" song (or whatever the hell the title is) and his "she is beautiful" song would more than synch up. i'm pretty sure that one night he just got drunk and started ad-libbing while staring at a chick in the audience, and his bandmates had no choice but to keep playing the party song even though he'd changed the words. (i swear it's the same song, yet the radio people keep trying to get me to believe it's different...)
posted by caution live frogs at 10:17 AM on April 8, 2004

"No Fun / Push It" is on the album As Heard On Radio Soulwax Pt. 2 by 2 Many DJs (otherwise known as Soulwax), also responsible for Destiny's Child vs. Nirvana "Smells Like Booty" and the Skee-Lo / Survivor "I Wish / Eye Of The Tiger" hybrid. They are the bomb diggity. That's the best DJ mix album of 2002, by the way, so you should pick it up, though be warned it's not wall-to-wall brilliant mashups (though there are a couple).

Oh, and Weezer are great. The "math rock" comment somebody made above was a pun on the formulaic nature of the music in question, not on the actual -- and ridiculous -- genre of "math rock." Or so I gathered. =W=.
posted by logovisual at 10:18 AM on April 8, 2004

2 Many DJs are definitely talented, but the best in the mashup business is Go Home Productions. His "Pistol Whipped" record is amazing. Also, go to his "Downloads" section and snag "Rapture Riders (Blondie vs. The Doors)", "Karma In the Life (Beatles vs Radiohead)" and "Beatleg Bootles 1."
posted by Reggie452 at 10:26 AM on April 8, 2004

U2's "Beautiful Day" is like a cover version of a-ha's "The Sun Always Shines on TV," right down to the "toouuucch me" lyric. Somebody did an mp3 combination of the songs a couple of years back.
posted by edlundart at 10:50 AM on April 8, 2004

I believe we call that the Oasis syndrom. They started it.
posted by Sijeka at 10:54 AM on April 8, 2004

The worst self-duplication I can remember is the forsaken Lou Bega, whose "1+1=2" is the same as Mambo #5, but awkwardly transcribed into a major key. It's on the same album, too, so he was pre-emptively dogging on his success (at least he knew when he had a "good" idea!)
posted by abcde at 11:54 AM on April 8, 2004

psmealy: " the best smashup I have heard to date was the Stooges "No Fun" mixed with Salt 'n' Pepa's "Push It". A google search turns up nothing, but ... "

Here it is. you're welcome.
posted by zpousman at 12:04 PM on April 8, 2004

Very clever! I'm mirroring the MP3.
posted by waxpancake at 12:04 PM on April 8, 2004

Karma Police would go well with Sexy Sadie, perhaps, because part of the piano line is an almost direct lift (no offense to Radiohead though, they used it an entirely different way).
posted by abcde at 12:17 PM on April 8, 2004

Sweet Jane and Crimson and Clover maybe? Would probably need some massaging...
posted by PinkStainlessTail at 12:19 PM on April 8, 2004

"Don't Worry Be Happy" and 4 Non-Blondes' "What's Going On?" are so close to the exact same song I'm surprised Bobby McFerrin didn't sue the ugly hats off them.
posted by schoolgirl report at 1:45 PM on April 8, 2004

Once I saw Spengler, Weights and Measures and North of America all at one show. While Weights and Measures played their last song, the Norts got up on stage and started playing along. Then all seven of them segued into "Central Port of Equal Times".

It was the awesomest thing ever.
posted by hughbot at 1:53 PM on April 8, 2004

There's a comedy pair who sing two Britney songs back-and-forth. Very funny, very obviously nearly the same song.

And then there's the Cowboy Junkies, with entire albums that sound entirely the same. I swear, you buy one CJ album, you've bought 'em all!
posted by five fresh fish at 4:08 PM on April 8, 2004

Hughbot: Tear in one eye, dude. Tear in one eye.

I saw Thrush Hermit and Buck 65 do a similar trick at the Marquee in Halifax, but they did it four or five times, trading sets.
posted by jon_kill at 4:40 PM on April 8, 2004

how about zeppelin's black dog vs. wipe out?

ok nevermind.
posted by glenwood at 7:00 PM on April 8, 2004

DJs On Strike! just released a new Nirvana bootleg 12" which is quite different from the usual "mashup" in that it's electronic beats and wankery added on top of the entire song. 2 tracks, one is Smells, the other Lithium.

What's so special about that, you might ask?

First off, most mashups simply take a bar segment and loop it. Easy. DJs On Strike! do it different. Samplers/sequencers carry a perfect rhythm (it's hard to make them NOT carry a perfect rhythm), and Nirvana was such a sloppy band (who didn't use clicktracks) that it was extremely difficult to mix electronic elements into the full un-edited version of the song without it sounding like a trainwreck.

In other words, DJs On Strike go backwards - they force the electronics onto the rock song - not the other way around.
posted by afx114 at 7:53 PM on April 8, 2004

I hope both songs are on the same album. It's the same "pile"...a person shouldn't be billed twice for it!!! :)

Also, how lazy can 1 band be. I mean really. A song will raise millions for them. You'd think they'd put a little more effort into it. I write songs for free and try to make them kinda original...gimme $100 bucks and it wouldn't sound like anything I ever wrote before :)
posted by ChristFollower at 10:44 PM on April 8, 2004

Okay, I have a question for somebody who, unlike myself, has actually heard either of these songs before just now: iTunes tells me that "Someday" runs 3:27 and "How You Remind Me" runs 3:43. On this MP3, "Someday" starts a couple of seconds before "Remind", but it ends a couple of seconds early too -- and the whole thing only runs 3:10. What was edited out?
posted by jjg at 11:09 PM on April 8, 2004

Some "yeah, yeah"s are edited out of How You Remind Me, I think.
posted by namespan at 11:16 PM on April 8, 2004

Ive never heard any bad music
posted by Satapher at 1:03 AM on April 9, 2004

this shit rocks.
posted by fishfucker at 2:54 AM on April 9, 2004

afx114: there was nothing sloppy about Nirvana's studio recordings. That is a myth.
posted by jon_kill at 11:58 AM on April 9, 2004

jon_kill's right. If you're as high listening to it as Kurt was when he wrote it, Nirvana will sound rather like early Kraftwerk, or maybe Philip Glass during his disco era.
posted by chicobangs at 12:06 PM on April 9, 2004

All of The Spin Doctors catalog can be sung to "Sweet Home Alabama"

Heh. I was just going to point out that you can mix and match spin doctors lyrics to songs. Not that I've known the lyrics to any of their songs in over 10 years, but still.
posted by jragon at 2:21 PM on April 9, 2004

Nirvana was such a sloppy band...that it was extremely difficult to mix electronic elements into the full un-edited version of the song without it sounding like a trainwreck

This couldn't be less true. I can't think of a single Nirvana tune that would have required electronic elements, thought they did use a Cellist on a couple of occasions.

I can't verify whether they used click tracks or not, but both Butch Vig and Steve Albini said that David Grohl was one of the very best drummers they had ever worked with. Click track or not, Grohl was able to do two or three takes of each song, that could seamlessly be spliced together when necessary. As it was, Grohl was so solid, they hardly ever had to do more than two scratch takes.

jon_kill is right. Personally, perhaps, they were a mess, but Nirvana was nothing short of professional and was very, very focused in the studio. If you're thinking of "endless, nameless" that was the culmination of multiple takes of a song ("in bloom") at the end of the day that they just couldn't get right. Every band, whether Metallica, Rush or Steely Dan has moments like these.

Also, I had seen Nirvana play 6 times back in those days, and each time they were still one of the tightest punk rock bands I had ever seen (second only to Fugazi maybe, who didn't drink or take drugs at all).
posted by psmealey at 4:46 AM on April 13, 2004

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