Cannonball Thighs

Breeders Cannonball 01

Not a day goes by when someone doesn’t stop me on the street to ask me how highly I rate Breeders Cannonball 12″.  True story. Now it can be really inconvenient if I’m late for work, or I’m out with one, or more, of my bitchez at lunchtime, but I suppose it’s just the flipside of the fame, fortune and general acclaim you get from reviewing your own record collection nightly.  As long as they don’t get too up in my face I’m always civil, although I don’t autograph LPs for anyone anymore*.  But, that as it is, it’s one of my favourite 12″s, easy.

Does anyone in the world not know ‘Cannonball’? if not, brace yourself you’re in for a treat, it’s also one of my favourite videos too:

To my mind music just doesn’t get much better than this, really.  What drives the song for me is just a perfect, off-kilter sense of rhythm and percussion, step forward Mr Jim MacPherson who plays this one to perfection, also take a bow Josephine Wiggs for that bass riff.  Couple it all with a perfect combination of restraint and release and Boom!  Perfection, like a more groovy, lighter fingered and hearted Pixies – Kim Deal took the QuietQuietLOUDLOUDLOUDQuiet formula with her when she recorded this beauty.  I think it’s also only fair to say that my great big huge alt-rock crush on Kelley Deal may be influencing my feelings about the song too.  Whenever I hear it, I’m immediately slammed straight back to 1993, well all the good bits of that year anyway.

B-sides? you got ’em.  ‘Cro-Aloha’ which is a demo version of ‘No Aloha’ from Last Splash (which I’ve never quite got around to buying), it’s a better version too, this ode to non-domesticity really benefits from less clarity and more fuzziness.  ‘900’ is a really slow-building moody track, the beginning of which cops a trick, or two from ‘Scarborough Fair’, Josephine Wiggs really comes to the fore on this one with her vocals too.

Best of all though and not a million miles behind the title track is the Breeders’ unlikely cover of Aerosmith’s ‘Lord of The Thighs’.  The original from Get Your Wings, has become one of my all-time favourite ‘Smith tunes funky, dark and a bit predatory, a bit of a precursor musically to ‘Walk This Way’ for me.  But I digress, this ‘Lord of The Thighs’ is quite faithful musically, albeit a darn sight looser in places, but the absolute clincher is Josephine Wiggs’ spoken vocal on top, her fairly plummy English tones somehow giving this track real twist and menace,

You must have come here to find me
You’ve got the look in your eyes
Although you really don’t mind it
I am the Lord Of Your Thighs

I love a good creative cover, when someone takes a track and does something interesting with it, rather than just regurgitating it and this ticks those boxes for me.  I think another sign of a really good cover is that it makes you want to hear the original again straight after, which is what I’ve done over and over tonight – played them both in a loop.

I’m happy. This is fun.

Breeders Cannonball 03

295 Down.

P.S – I aspire to one day owning a Kelley Deal scarf, knitting is a big part of what she does these days:  http://store.kelleydeal.com/

*they just end up on eBay at inflated prices, really annoying when you think you’re just signing it for someone’s sick kid, or granny.

10 thoughts on “Cannonball Thighs

  1. I started Fine Arts in Uni in ’93, and fell in love with Canonball. I remember one music magazine I read had a big Breeders ad for Last Splash (with the candy strawberry), and I used it in one of my art pieces.

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    1. That’s really cool, my wife once passed off the lyrics to Iron Maiden’s ‘The Trooper’ & ‘Sun & Steel’ as poems in school English classes – she was banking on the nuns at her convent school not owning the Piece of Mind LP. It worked.

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  2. I loved “Cannonball” first because of a lie and then because it was awesome. One of my 90s rock crushes was Tanya Donnelly who I swore sung/wrote this song. Alas, I was lying to myself. Yours wins the crush off.

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    1. Sorry David, I think she may even have left the band by then. I too loved Tanya Donnelly, we may have had to fight a duel for her affections if Kelley hadn’t come along for me.

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  3. Loved Last Splash. Between “Cannonball” and “Gin N’ Juice”, 1993 was a hell of a year…

    You know, that was a damn lie. I’ve never owned any Snoop Dogg. But I did own Last Splash. The Deal sisters were too cool. You know what, they still make good records. Last Breeders album was good. Damn good.

    Good stuff.

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    1. I had you marked as a Snoop kinda fella.

      I’ve only got this and Pod. Kim Deal is just amazing period. Not heard anything newer from them at all, I may investigate further.

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  4. The Breeders are more a Mrs. LeBrain band. I didn’t take to the 1990’s very well. I was dragged kicking and screaming into the 90’s. I didn’t get my first Docs until like ’97.

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