“You’ve tried the rest — now try the best!” It’s time for another installment of …
It’s been too long since we celebrated the end of the work week by watching a bunch of people performing versions of the same song. In other words, it’s been too long we since did …
It’s March Madness, ie basketball tournament time. Say, guys, why can’t there be a youtube-videos-of-people-singing-a-fun-song tournament? There can be! It’s called …
I guess what I’m trying to say is …
And also, one thing I wanted to mention was:
This week’s Friday Face-Off is “All These Things That I’ve Done” by the Killers. Watch the original here:
MNFTIU-heads will recall that I’ve liked this song for a while. A few weeks ago I sang it at karaoke. It’s a good karaoke song! Now it’s time to see if it’s a good Friday Face-Offs song … we’ll find out soon … because guess what …
Our first contestant is up next!
(This makes you happy and it makes me happy and that’s why we do it.)
Oh hellll yeah … we’re setting it OFF in STYLE right about NOW.
First of all, flicking the string above the nut to approximate the piano that begins the Killers’ version is bad-ass. And he knows it, too. Because look at how he looks at you while he’s doing it.
“Yeah, I’m going plink-plink with my guitar. You know you want me.”
Now although this guy gets +100 points for style, we gotta deduct .05 points every time he screws up the singing … so let’s see … that means the total deduction is … (using my calculator, gimme a sec) … 3,502 points. (There’s a lot of weird prosody/phrasing in this song … I can’t tell you how many videos I watched where people flub the phrasing of ‘I’m so much older now than I can take.’ I had to practice a lot before karaoke. )
Then again, we have to add +5,000,000,000 points for 2:03 - 2:19 where he’s just owning that barred G-chord like nobody’s business.
You know what? Just watch the whole video. You’ll like it.
Hello! It’s me, Friday Face-Offs! Do you like the Killers? Do you like the professional wrestler Shawn Michaels, aka the Heartbreak Kid, aka HBK? Do you like amateur fan videos that are fifty times more kick-ass than anything you’d ever see on ESPN? If so, you’re about to be pretttttty sad …
Goddamn, whoever made this video must be like a tenured professor in Shawn Michaels studies, because every single lyric of the song is represented by a totally appropriate clip from the career of Shawn Michaels, aka Heartbreak Kid aka HBK. While watching this video it slowly it dawned on me: This is making me want to have sex with Shawn Michaels. This video is turning me gay for Shawn Michaels. I LOVE SHAWN MICHAELS, AKA HEARTBREAK KID, AKA YOU MIGHT KNOW HIM AS AKA HBK!
B/c damn is he owning the universe very hard at 1:09??? I saw that and I was like, “Wait — humans get to make faces like that?!? I thought only immortal gods in the sky got to make faces like that.”
I used to only like the Undertaker, but forget that. I’m in HBK’s crew now.
“HBK we’re makin’ that green / people always say what the hell does that mean? / H for the homies who can’t understand / how one country boy became the man / B for the way we bust and shout / one by one we knock y’all out / K for the way my dj’s cuttin’ / other wrestlers man you ain’t seen nothin’”
(Whoever gets that reference gets a bonus shout-out next week)
From the comments to this video:
“This is simply epic, such a great tribute. It really got to touch me.”
The power chord heard ’round the world. It makes me LOL every time.
No shame in your game, fellas. I’M FEELING YOU. GUITARS RULE
musical keys are for punks
a chord is a chord is a chord
just crank it up
and have fun
I love how in the comments to this video, people are like, “Dude you’re in the wrong key — you’re totally playing in the wrong key, it sounds weird,” and the guitarist is like, “Yeah, I thought it sounded weird, I think it was the guitar; the tuners didn’t work. So I bought a new guitar.”
DUDE. I LOVE YOU BUT IT’S NOT THE GUITAR. TRUST ME.
“What are ya gonna do.”
That’s the poignancy and acoustic chaos you’ve come to expect from FRIDAY FACE-OFFS!!!
Sigh. See, this takes me back. For us, it was a cassette of the Cult’s “Electric” album. Remember cranking “Aphrodisiac Jacket”* and trying to rip the head rest off the passenger seat because it sounded so jamming in a lime-green Ford Escort??? Yeah. WE BRUNG IT. That’s some 1990 memories right there for all you whippersnappers …
Anyway, glad these dudes are keeping the flame alive … the flame of intra-automobile group headbanging, one of the greatest dance forms ever, when will Joan Acocella write about it?
*(aka “World’s Biggest Rip-Off of ‘White Room’ Ever Recorded How Did Rick Rubin Not Get The Pants Sued Off Him?”)
This performance is hypnotic. I think ol’ Jandek Jr. here is on to something. Also? It’s visually beautiful. It has a muted palette, like all webcam videos, but somehow the colors are perfect. How did that happen? Same with the composition: Big white head balanced by big dreadnought body.
This is what all modern art should look like.
Every so often you stumble on one of these home-made youtube videos where everything falls into place, and you’re like, “This works. This is so completely its own thing, so elegant … who cares if it’s accidental? You could put this up against anything by Bill Viola and it’d hold its own.”
Okay, basically this video isn’t a true 2nd place video … but there’s one element of this video that is pure champ. material … so it gets the bump to 2nd place … and that one amazing element is — well, let’s see if you can figure it out … pay attention to 3:24, 3:40, 3:58 (which is about when the cameraman wakes the fuck up and realizes where the real story lies) and (for a brief glorious flash) at 5:58 … and then maybe you wanna check out 6:37 …
Woo-hoo, so good! Are teenagers cooler than they used to be? That guy looks like he’s having fun in a way I don’t even think we had back when I was a teenager. He’s chillin’ soooo hard with his bass. He probably doesn’t even know he’s playing in front of the whole school at the big assembly … he’s like, “Another day, another chance to play my bass and groove to the music. It’s all good. Someday I’m gonna be a professional bass player and make a lot of money and travel all over the world. What time is it? It’s time to move my finger from this fret to that fret … here we go … hell yeah, I freakin’ nailed it. Ladies and gentlemen, I enjoy playing the bass.”
A guy like that has long coattails, y’know? This video just rode on some serious emo bass-player coattails. And I dare Republicans to try to obstruct this dude … he will crush Mitch McConnell like a bug.
Okay, we’re nearing the end of this week’s Friday Face-Offs! WINNING VIDEO IS NEXT
By the way, I just realized: This is the 20th Friday Face-Offs! Can you believe it? Twenty great face-offs in the history books … and yet it’s still the greatest thing to happen to the internet since sliced bread.
Not sure how to talk about this video. I think it’s a product of deep and abiding love. Just watch it. Watch him. Love him. Worry about him. (Video has an elegiac air that makes me nervous/sad.) Wish you knew him. Wonder how you can be more like him. Strategize about how to take the spirit of 0:05 and 0:11 and incorporate it into your life (without necessarily incorporating 0:28, maybe)…
Because goddamn, people, this guy looks incandescent. Check out 1:19 are you out of your mind with how AWESOME that looks? How are some folks able to make motions like that and they just break your heart with how gorgeous it is? Are you seriously telling me you’re not inventing a time machine to figure out how to go back in time so you can be at these parties with this guy? What about the scene when he’s at the beach???
ARRRGGGH FRIDAY FACE-OFFS!!! WE’RE BACK IN BUSINESS, PEOPLE