Friday Face-Offs: “Use Somebody” – 5th Place

Are you kidding me? Look at what happens at (0:03), I mean come on—does she find her groove very hard right then?

Putting aside the off-the-charts-breaking-the-needle adorableness factor, one of the reasons I love this woman and want her to join my traveling band of Friday Face-Offs champions is because she completely ignores the bridge and doesn’t sing along—because, let’s be honest, this song has no kind of bridge. (Remember earlier when I was comparing “Use Somebody” to “Beautiful Day?” The biggest difference between them is that U2 actually wrote a pretty hot bridge, whereas Kings of Leon probably woke up from some kind of sex-and-drugs binge and was like, “Oh yeah, we need a bridge, record label says we gotta have a bridge, okay let’s spend all of nine seconds writing a bridge.”)

By the way, the comments to this video are GREAT. Because everyone hates her and is rooting against her, LOL—yeah, people are really hating on her:

“Man oh man”. I love your voice! Whachuknow about Kings of Leon???

Speaking of that comment, I gotta say: Yeah, why are black people so into this song? I was not expecting to find so many black folks representing this song. I guess it’s because the lead vocal lends itself to melisma and “black singing?” Much more so then the lead vocal to, say, “You Belong With Me.” Anyway, people are killing this vocal left and right on youtube, and this is a hot fuckin’ Friday Face-Offs and you love it and I love it.


This video compliments the Jandek, Jr. video from a couple weeks ago. Beautiful composition as only accidental web-cam placement can provide. Look at those blues. Look at her face balanced by the mask. Just a nice, clean composition. Singing is okay, too.

I should go into Robert Christgau mode and give this an A-. You know how he gives 90% of the records he reviews an A-, until it doesn’t mean anything anymore? He’ll write some inscrutable esoteric shit where you can’t tell if he’s describing Finnegan’s Wake or the new Nickelback CD and then he’ll just give it an A-.

Here’s how Robert Christgau would describe this video:

“Contra Clapton, it’s in blue rooms where shadows run from themselves. Less “Use Somebody” than “Blues Somebody,” she knows to make allowances for tones between tones. Then again, if Miles Davis hadn’t dropped “Kind of Blue,” the Kings of Leon would be 50% less Kinks and 10% more Leon Redbone and we’d spread Aquafresh in our eyelashes. Village Blue Preservation Society, anyone? Sympatico, natch. Wooden masks rarely sing along . . . it’s a prog thing. GRADE: A-

And you’re like, “Dude, what the hell are you talking about? It’s a goddamn 3-minute song. Should I listen to it 100 times in a row, or not?”

FRIDAY FACE-OFFS!!! You know that I could use some Fridaaayyyy!