A-Z: OK Go – Ooberman

Advance warning: this post is incredibly long!

2 days running?! Oh yes, I am going to overdose you all with A-Zing. To be honest I’m just excited that I’m nearly up to Ooberman. It’s been a long time since Catatonia – I need another of my top 3 bands. πŸ™‚
OK Go – A Million Ways (single)
I don’t actually remember buying this single, though obviously did. Β£1.99 from HMV the sticker tells me. I must have been in there buying something else, spotted it and added it to my purchases. I really like the b-side – ‘This Will Be Our Year’.

Ooh, just had a thought! I haven’t changed the YouTube video on my MySpace profile for a while – I might have to stick on Here It Goes Again πŸ˜€ Yeah, am gonna do that…

OK Go – Do What You Want (single promo)

Ooberman – Shorley Wall EP
And we’re onto Ooberman! Woo. Where to begin? It would be easier if The Magic Treehouse was the first CD, as I owned that before the Shorley Wall EP. Maybe it should be the first CD infact as it’s the first album, whereas this is an EP so surely should belong with the singles?! It’s one of those CDs that causes me problems in my obsessive-compulsive way, as I don’t know where to put it. Generally I class EPs as singles, not albums, but this one does have 7 tracks, so is nearer an album in length, plus it just feels like it belongs at the beginning of the Ooberman CDs – I think I did put it among the singles temporarily and it just felt wrong. Clearly I give this stuff too much thought, but hey. So yes, I feel like it belongs first on my shelves, though I’m now not sure how to go about explaining my discovery and love of Ooberman – do I do so here or wait until I get to The Magic Treehouse? Ah hell, I’m gonna have to do it here so I can then just get on with listening to the music…

So, Ooberman – I hadn’t heard of them at all when I started at Uni in September of ’99, but it didn’t take long until I had. They actually played at the Students Union during Freshers Week, but alas that was slightly too early for me to have heard of them so I didn’t go along. It must have only been a few weeks too early though, if that – maybe just a week or so! All I know is that some time in the space between starting at uni in September and Tears From A Willow being released in October, I heard of Ooberman by reading a few reviews of The Magic Treehouse in various places (including the student newspaper), had been coveting the album in the shops as loved the artwork and was really intrigued to hear the music (but couldn’t afford to just go ahead and buy it) and kept checking out the singles section to see if there was a cheap single I could buy to give me a taste of what the band were like. It felt like I went in HMV and Virgin loads to check the singles, but unless I was going in more than once a week (which is possible, though a little weird if I was expecting to find different singles) it can’t have been that many times between September and October (11th October infact, so not even the end of the month)! Blossoms Falling and Million Suns had already been released as singles, so they had those, but they’d gone up to Β£4.99 each, which I wasn’t willing to pay for a band I wasn’t even sure that I’d like. But then I went in one week, which must have been the week Tears From A Willow was released, as there it suddenly was, for just Β£1.99! Woohoo! I’d also been after Gorky’s singles to check them out and amazingly the same week there was the single for Spanish Dance Troupe cheaply too (although I just checked and that was apparently released in September, so not sure why it only seemed to appear in October, but hey), so I bought that too. As much as I loved the Gorky’s single and it helped me get into them as a band, my favourite by far was the Ooberman single. Tears From A Willow itself I just loved – it reminded me of Queen in the way that there are changing styles and it’s a bit quirky and mad, but still musically brilliant. I just loved it! And then to make it even better, the b-sides were brilliant too!! I’ll talk more about them when I get to the single, but my love of Ooberman was born – I just needed to get me the album!!

Amazingly I was quite sensible with money back then (what went wrong?!) so I didn’t just go out and buy it, as much as I wanted to. I kept ogling it in the shops though – it just looks so magical, it lives up to its name – I’d read through the song titles and imagine what they were like. I kinda miss doing that for albums actually – that crazy anticipation – I did the same for International Velvet, which is maybe why they’re 2 of my favourite albums, if infact not my 2 most favourite albums. Anyway, as Christmas was approaching I put the album on my Christmas list (most likely at the top of the list of CDs) and just hoped I’d get it. Happily I did! I remember I was at my Mum’s for Christmas that year and I got it there. I think the first thing I did after we’d opened presents and stuff was go upstairs and put it on! I vividly remember being in my bedroom (well, what had recently become my bedroom – it had been my sister’s before I’d gone to uni and we’d swapped so she could have the bigger room) and listening to it whilst everyone was getting dressed and having showers and stuff (having the showers before the getting dressed I’d hope). I was so excited to finally hear it, but a bit nervous as well – what if it didn’t live up to my ridiculously high expectations? It’s rare that an album will really blow me away, particularly on first listen – it needs quite a high level of diversity and catchy hooks to be able to do it. But when Million Suns kicked off the album I was instantly happy! But the 2nd song’s the real test – will it be too similar? Will it not be as good as the first? Oh no, it’s even better!! And then the third track, OMG! Loved, loved, loved it!! I’m not sure of any other time a band have so instantly become one of my favourites! How they weren’t better known was beyond me. Not that I minded – the fact that I felt like I’d discovered them and that they were probably the first band I got into who weren’t particularly well known just made it all the more special. I hadn’t really thought of that before actually – I take it for granted now that I like a lot of slightly obscure bands, but before I went to uni that wasn’t really the case – I started to read Melody Maker in the sixth form when I got into Catatonia, but I think my discovery of Ooberman possibly even pre-dated my getting into bands like Big Leaves. Anyway, whatever, I was blown away by The Magic Treehouse and had a desperate need to see Ooberman live! Happily they played Leeds not long into the new year so I had to go! I hadn’t been to many gigs by this point – infact it might have just been the Catatonia one at The Astoria! Unless I count the ones during Freshers Week and at the Freshers Ball, but they weren’t really like regular gigs. Anyway, I also hadn’t started meeting up with random people I’d met online at this point either, plus hadn’t swung by the Oobtube yet I don’t think, so who was I going to go to the gig with?! It seems a little surreal now that I did this, but within the School Of Computing we had newsgroups on the intranet that we had to use for discussing things within modules, plus general course-related things, but there were also some test areas and general discussion areas where you could talk a load of crap and where I’d often post random Catatonia song lyrics, which amazingly would garner responses of other people doing the same! Anyway, in some suitable newsgroup I posted that I was wanting to go see Ooberman at The Cockpit on whichever date and was wondering if anyone wanted to go with me. I got a response from a guy in the year above me who wanted to go (and who I think had even seen them live before), so I agreed to meet up with him. Some time before the gig we met up in the long room (no not a clever name, it was infact a long room in the school of computing, where the noticeboards etc were) just so we could say hi and know what each other looked like etc and then we met up on the day. He’d had to go somewhere on that day, for an interview or some work-related thing or something (I can’t really remember), so I met him at the train station. Wherever he’d been he was rather on the drunk side! Ha ha. Anyway, we went along to The Cockpit and met up with another friend of his at some point, plus his friend’s girlfriend I think (or they might have just been friends – I really can’t remember). I remember that the venue was already quite full when we got there, so we couldn’t easily get to the front or anything, but I seem to remember we were on some kind of raised area to the side, so still had a great view (plus it’s not exactly the biggest venue anyway). Thirteen:13 were the support band, who I hadn’t heard of at the time, but who I got into not long after. I also didn’t realise at the time that they included ex-Catch people (Wayne and Ben) – if I had then I’d have been more excited and paid more attention during their set as I loved Catch – however, as it was I don’t actually remember much about their set, shamefully. I was just there to see Ooberman and oh my they didn’t disappoint! Because the gig was during their most successful period I guess, the atmosphere was amazing and the crowd were pretty crazy. I think I remember someone stage diving during Bees, much to the band’s amusement. Infact they mentioned it the next time they played The Cockpit (which I was also present at, of course), though sadly there was a much smaller crowd that time (not too small, but not as packed and insane as the first gig I went to). Still a brilliant gig mind, if not even better musically. They played some songs at that gig that I only ever heard them play live that once – things like Here Come The Ice Wolves, Ghosts, plus Steve doing Kill The Rabbit! In total I saw them live 6 times before they split, getting to meet them twice at Preston and Cardiff. Naturally I was gutted when they split – I thought they were one of the few bands I was safe with – but then I was ecstatic when they reformed 3 years later. πŸ˜€ Alas they haven’t gigged since then and I do miss the live performances, but I’m incredibly grateful for all the new music, including the ever-growing number of side-projects. Long live the Oob!

I also love getting to introduce people to Ooberman – not sure if I’ll manage it through this incredibly rambly blog post – I haven’t even started listening to the music yet – but I’ve managed it with quite a few people in the past. The 2nd Ooberman gig I went to I dragged along my friends Neil and Tony and converted both of them to the ways of the Oob. I dragged my sister along to the album preview night at the Metro, though don’t think I converted her alas, she wasn’t into that type of music at the time, though might appreciate it more now. I’d already converted my Dad by playing him their music, so he went to 2 of their gigs with me (although one was the last one I got to go to – the one in Brum where things delayed the set and we only got to see about 3 songs before we had to go get the last train! Although we did get to see Jaymie sing a few songs on his own!). Who else? Ooh, my friend Chris I converted and then took along to the Cardiff Barfly gig. Most excitingly I’ve converted quite a few people on Cerys’ forum recently – some of whom are only about 15, so were only… oh my god about 6 in 1999! So yeah, it’s quite satisfying to introduce a new generation to the wonders of Ooberman. It’s not difficult either – people fall in love with the music quite easily once they get to hear it – it’s just a shame that more people don’t get to hear it really.

Anyway, I promised myself I’d actually get more done today – do some stuff around the house an’ that, but it’s gonna be difficult if I’m listening to Ooberman as there’s so much I can say about them and how important a band they are to me. I don’t even care if you’ve all glazed over now and aren’t reading any more. πŸ˜› I should stick Shorley Wall on now though…

The band-designed artwork and inlay leaflet thing really help make this CD feel special and personal. That’s one thing I really like about Ooberman – you get a real sense of the band through their releases – like you’re part of a special club. Their music, particularly the early stuff, evokes a feeling of childhood and innocence anyway – I suppose quite obvious from the title ‘The Magic Treehouse’ – it captures the feel of the album so well. The Shorley Wall EP has that too – it’s a bit more rough around the edges I guess, but in a good way – it feels like reading someone’s diary, if that makes sense. It’s personal and uninhibited and has emotional ups and downs.
‘Serotonin Smile’ – this is an interesting song – I think I actually had it before I bought Tears From A Willow as it was on a Melody Maker compilation CD – however it was a song I’d just listened to the once and hadn’t been that keen on, so I hadn’t thought of checking the band out. Even when I got it on this CD it took a while to grow on me – I instantly liked the chorus, but the punkyness of the verses weren’t really to my tastes at the time. It grew on me though and my tastes expanded generally and I really love it now.
‘Why Did My Igloo Collapse?’ – This song really encapsulates early Ooberman – catchy and fun, evoking childhood memories – about sledging on bin liners. There’s a sadness to it too – I don’t think many bands could pull off sounding so genuinely sad that their igloo had collapsed! Danny did it so well live too.
‘Live Again (Don’t Die Father)’ – I don’t listen to this song very often – not because I dislike it, but because I find it quite hard to listen to – it’s obviously very personal to Andy, plus it makes me think about what it would be like to lose my own Dad and it just makes me really sad.
‘Honeydew’ – which other band would have a spoken word track with musical backing about a rabbit? It’s like Watership Down for the indie-generation. I’m quite pleased I bought this CD after I already had The Magic Treehouse, as it’s fun to pick out the bits of other songs in the music. Blossoms Falling, Roll Me In Cotton… But yeah, such a sad story and a track unlike any other I was used to hearing on CDs I owned! I’m just reading the text on the back of the EP and it probably sums it up better than I’ve managed to be honest – “This EP is dedicated to all the dreamers who’ve smelt the autumn night air and felt the beauty of the moon tugging at their hearts. Written and recorded in a mood of good-natured defiance, this, our first EP, is a big hello to people like us. And a big fook off to the coonts in yellow glasses”. He he he. Anyway, ‘Honeydew’ has ended but the CD hasn’t finished. You get silence for a while and then Danny suddenly says ‘what do you think you’re doing?’ – trust me, if this is your first time listening to it and you haven’t realised the CD’s still playing, this somewhat scares the crap out of you!!! Possibly even more so than other secret tracks that have scared the crap out of me over the years. You then get lots more silence and then finally there’s an interview, although you have to turn the sound up full blast to be able to hear it and even then it’s not that loud. It’s great though, makes me smile πŸ™‚

Ooberman – The Magic Treehouse (album)
One of my favourite albums of all time! I think I’ve probably introduced it enough already! Like I said, Million Suns and Blossoms Falling kick it off brilliantly, being the most anthemic and obvious-singles on the album. I over-played them when I first got the album infact, so I then started skipping them for a while, but soon started loving them again. Blossoms Falling inparticular I really love – I think it’s the “I should say I love you, I want to, I want to” bit and the way it builds up. But also because it’s so ridiculously catchy with the ‘na na na’s etc. Again the text on the back by the band sums this album up pretty well – “These tales of love and loss, woodlands and outer space, are dedicated to those who care about life’s great adventure”. Yes!
‘Sur La Plage’ – This song kinda hits you in the face – it’s full of energy and a little nuts. I love the guitar on it.
‘Roro Blue’ – Ah, the only song I’m inclined to skip, though obviously I can’t as part of this A-Z. It’s weird – there’ll often be songs on albums that I’m not keen on initially, but which grow on me, but this one went in reverse! I liked it for quite a while, but then went off it and have never really warmed to it again. I thought I might enjoy it again now, as I haven’t listened to it in a looooooong time, but no I’m still not keen! I don’t know if I want to say I ‘dislike’ it, but actually I kinda do. It’s the only Ooberman song I’d say that about though.
‘Tears From A Willow’ – “Did you bring your sandwiches, I’ve got some LSD”. Ah, that mixture of childhood innocence and er not-so-innocence. You can see why Ooberman were big with students! Personally I’ll always associate them with my time at uni too.
‘Bees’ – Ah, love it. Again pretty nuts, but I love that – I can’t stand dull dreary bands – it’s beyond me why so many people like Coldplay and bands like Ooberman struggle to make ends meet.
‘Sugar Bum’ – Yep, a song about a girl with a large posterior. Should I be ashamed that I love this song so much? Hell no, it’s a brilliant song! I know ‘Hey Petrunko’ is the more mature and musically accomplished album, but ‘The Magic Treehouse’ will always be my favourite – partly for nostalgic reasons, but also because my level of maturity does indeed lie with songs about fat-bottomed girls (he he, it seemingly all goes back to my love of Queen! Only just made that connection…), talking to the cows and Physics Discos.
‘Roll Me In Cotton’ – Such a beautiful song. Almost seems like it shouldn’t work inbetween the madness of Sugar Bum and Physics Disco, yet it does. Definitely a favourite and was always beautiful live too. Plus I just love the lyric “she preferred coffee to the rhythm”. And “just hold me, cinematic style”.
‘Physics Disco’ – Another reason why I associate this album so strongly with being at Uni I suppose! Not that I did Physics, but Computing’s equally geeky to be honest!! πŸ˜‰ And Andy and I bonded over Leeds Uni’s ‘red route’ not long ago. Funny.
‘The Magic Treehouse’ – Ah, the instrumental track. Not one I’d listen to on its own, but it works well in the context of the album.
‘Amazing In Bed’ – This is an interesting one – I’ve always liked it, but never considered it a favourite until the past year or so. I’m not sure why I’ve listened to it so much recently, but I have.
‘My Baby’s Too Tall & Thin’ – such a sweet, beautiful and simple song – only 42 seconds long, sung by Sophia and with minimal backing. As someone with a soft-spot for tall, thin guys, I have a soft-spot for this song too.
‘Shorley Wall’ – Ah, I didn’t really talk about this on the EP, but it is an amazing song. Probably their best known and a great song for hooking people into the band I’ve discovered. Personally there are a lot of other songs I prefer, but it is incredibly beautiful and Sophie reading the poem is pretty heart-breaking (in a good way).
‘Silver Planet’ – I love how Ooberman songs have a tendency to evoke either being young and playing in the woods, or floating out in space. Or infact both, somehow – like this song. Not a song I listen to that much actually, but a great closer, with the outro reminding me a bit of Honeydew, but y’know without the rabbits! Plus there’s then ‘Stormtrooper’ as a hidden track, which I love. I think I only got to see that performed live once too, but ’twas fab. All in all, if you don’t own this album you need to buy it now! If you’re a skinflint you can still download it free from the band’s website I think, but don’t, buy it and enjoy the artwork and the sleevenotes and have it looking pretty on your CD rack/shelf/pile/whatever.

Ok I don’t think I’m going to do very well today in terms of actually doing anything other than this, but hey, tis a bank holiday so I’ve still got tomorrow! Hee hee. Plus this is kinda productive, no? I’m certainly typing a lot anyway!! Finger exercise?! And I’m really enjoying it, which is of course the main thing. Can’t believe that album went so quickly infact. Onto the next…

Ooberman – Running Girl (promo)
This is a promo jointly for the single (which was just released on vinyl) and also the mini-album. I’ve put it in front of the mini-album rather than the single as obviously the vinyl doesn’t sit amongst my CDs – that would be weird. However, like most promos I buy, I buy them to be completist and a little obsessive, but don’t actually listen to them (as presumably have the songs already) so just stick them on my shelf. I’m only just now realising that this CD has 2 tracks on it – 1 being the original version of Running Girl (so presumably the version on the single and mini-album) and the other being the ‘Phantom 309’ version (‘Phantom 309’ being a side-project of Steve’s at the time). Now, I do technically already have the Phantom 309 version, as it’s the b-side to the single, but as I only have it on vinyl, the version I’ve got on MP3 is ripped from the vinyl and not brilliant quality. However I bought this promo CD at some point and didn’t realise until now that it meant I’ve got a better quality version of that recording!! How exciting! πŸ˜€

Ooberman – Running Girl (mini-album)
The first release on the band’s own label, ‘Rotodisc’. It reminds me a bit of the Shorley Wall EP in a way, just in the way in which the songs work together and that there are quite a few fairly-short tracks. All the songs are great, but there aren’t actually many on here that I’d rank amongst my absolute favourites – Running Girl itself is brilliant and the vocoder effect makes it really haunting, plus I loooove Ghosts and think Here Come The Ice Wolves is a brilliant song, but overall it’s not a release I get particularly excited about now for some reason – although I’m sure some people on the Oobtube rank it above The Magic Treehouse, which confuses the hell out of me, but I already know my tastes often don’t align with other peoples’!
‘We’ll Know When We Get There’ – Actually this song’s pretty brilliant – I don’t listen to it often as forget how good it is, but then really enjoy it when I do happen to listen to it.
‘Alone At Last’ – I’d forgotten how good this song is as well actually. Kinda makes me want to cry, but in a good way.

Ooberman – Hey Petrunko (album)
Ah the long-anticipated 2nd album! The favourite of many Ooberfans and a pretty breathtaking album it must be said. I remember before it was released the band posted a ‘preview’ MP3 on the website, which was basically an amalgamation of clips of songs from the album, all mixed together into one track. It did a very good job in making us all excited to hear the album. Infact I still have it on my playlist as really enjoy listening to it!
‘Hatch Opens’ – continuing the space theme, this is a great way to open up the album – instantly you get a sense of the album’s scope – you’re hooked.
‘Bluebell Morning’ – Love this song. First heard it when I saw it on footage of the Reading festival I think it was. They did it live for quite a while before the Bluebell Morning EP was finally released. Weirdly it’s not one that instantly grabbed me – I liked it, but it took a while before it really became a favourite. I think it’s once I started listening to the lyrics – “Do you feel like a bluebell morning – do you think you’ll die alone? I feel like the drifting oceans but I’ll die before I ever find my home”.
While Running Girl’s playing again I’ll talk a bit more generally about the album – my copy’s signed as I pre-ordered from Townsend Records. To remind me of this there’s a Townsend Records sticker along the bottom at the back! Not that I mind that – I really like Townsend, they sell some great stuff – best place for ordering or pre-ordering Ooberman and Bluetones stuff, especially when you get signed freebies. Anyway, I’d actually forgotten that this CD also contains the documentary about the album (which I first saw at the album preview gig) plus the videos for Bluebell Morning, Running Girl and Beany Bean. I’ve never understood why Beany Bean didn’t make it onto the album, but hey tis a hidden treasure for those who buy the singles and not just the albums. And the video for it is probably my favourite Ooberman music video. There are other reasons why I love it too, but will wait until I get to the single.
‘Dreams In The Air’ – another song that was knocking about for quite a while before this album I think as I’ve got an Ooberman fanzine called ‘Dreams In The Air’ somewhere! Beautiful song.
‘Where Did I Go Wrong?’ – An instant favourite, but for some reason I rarely listen to it now. I still really like it, but it’s the “Canada…” bit at the end I’m not so keen on for some reason. And the chorus bits actually – maybe it’s the baby noises – they creep me out a bit! *lol* I love the style of the verses though.
‘Hand That Gets Burnt’ – A vocal tour de force from Sophie. I don’t like to listen to it too often though as think it could easily be over-played, so enjoy it more when I do listen to it.
‘SnakeDance’ – Originally on the Bluebell Morning EP, though this version’s slightly extended and even better!! It’s a song that needed to grow on me initially but became a favourite. And live it was just amazing with Dan on violin! So many styles that almost shouldn’t work together but do – a mix of heavy metal and eastern music – you partly want to head bang and then you want to do some cossack dancing!! And then there’s the gentle, emotional centre too. Brilliant brilliant song. and ooh ooh that bit where there’s the pause and then you get the 3 bass notes before it all kicks off again – ah man, love that.
‘Open The Hatch’ – ah, love this too. Continuing on from ‘Hatch Opens’, tis about a spaceman who’s gone out into space looking for God but doesn’t find him so takes his helmet off and steps out into space – “But as his body scattered across the stars, the universe exploded into infinite life. He cried to himself, ‘I am home at last’.” How beautiful an idea’s that?
‘Cities That Fall’ – Another one I don’t listen to too often as like to keep it special. For some reason it’s always reminded me of ‘Hushaby Mountain’ from Chitty Chitty Bang Bang (well, mostly just the intro). Probably because I’m weird. I forget how brilliant it is though.
‘Abstract Sky’ – I forget this song’s from Hey Petrunko actually – I often think it’s from Running Girl. I like it, but along with ‘Petrunka’s Dream’, ‘Secret World’ and ‘The Clearing’ it’s one I’m most likely to skip. I do like all of those songs, but I think all of them together make the end of the album drag a little, as most of the punchy songs are nearer the beginning of the album. If just one or two of them were cut out I think I’d see the album as more of a contender for favourite Oob album actually – maybe ‘Secret World’ and ‘The Clearing’.
‘Petrunka’s Dream’ – I haven’t listened to this in ages – it’s quite a long one and works well in the context of the album but isn’t one I choose to listen to on its own. I feel a bit bad saying that though – the beginning bit especially’s pretty amazing and the bit I’m up to now’s great too – the spoken word bit.
‘First Day Of The Holidays’ – Hoorah for this towards the end of the album! Blows me away. The bit where the music builds up and up is just musical orgasmicness, surely! Remember hearing that bit on the preview MP3 and everyone wanting to know which song it was.
‘The Clearing’ – I haven’t listened to this in a loooooong time. I can’t even remember if it’s got any words… hmm, no. Ah, it’s not actually nearly 5 minutes long though – it goes into silence so that track 15’s the bonus track, rather than part of the album.
‘Summer Nights In June’ – really like this, though yeah it is best as a ‘bonus track’ rather than specifically being the last track, although it could have been slotted into the album in the middle somewhere surely? Maybe it’s because it’s an Andy track and this album kinda became Danny’s project to a large extent, with him sleeping in the studio and stuff. Anyway, whatever, tis a great album no doubt, even if I’d personally re-jig the tracklisting a little. πŸ˜‰

Ooberman – Hey Petrunko Plus… (Japanese import)
This is another CD that gives me problems when putting it on my shelving units! With import CDs, if they’re versions of albums then I put them after the albums, whereas if they’re other compilations I put them at the end, after the singles. Now, as this one’s called ‘Hey Petrunko Plus’ you’d think it’s the Japanese release of Hey Petrunko, featuring the same songs as the UK release of the album, plus maybe a few bonuses. That is why it lives here on my shelf. However, the title’s actually quite misleading!! That’s why I didn’t actually buy this for quite a while after it was released – I assumed it would just be the album with a few b-sides on the end or something – nothing I didn’t already have. But then I was bored one time and browsing Townsend Records when I actually checked out the tracklisting – completely different to ‘Hey Petrunko’!! There are quite a few Hey Petrunko tracks on it, albeit muddled up, but then there are all sorts of other songs mixed in too, including one that I’d never heard before (‘Falling Down’) which then reappeared on the third album. There are b-sides on here too, plus singles that didn’t make it onto albums (Beany Bean and Dolphin Blue) and tracks from the Shorley Wall EP! I don’t think I’ve actually listened to it before infact – I just bought it to hear ‘Falling Down’ and also to see which version of ‘Heavy Duty’ it was! I’ll get to that… Anyway, looking forward to listening to it now πŸ˜€ It’s 18 tracks and runs to just over an hour. The Japanese get some cool compilations! Speaking of which I should see if I can find the Japanese release of The Lost Tapes as I helped transcribe lyrics for that! Hee hee – albeit not entirely accurately apparently, but they were still left as they were. Cool.
Anyway, this kicks off with ‘Hatch Opens’, but that’s as long as the similarity to Hey Petrunko lasts as it then jumps on to ‘First Day Of The Holidays’.
‘Falling Down’ – Love this song. I was initially a little sad when it cropped up on ‘Carried Away’ though, as in my elitist way I quite liked it being a hidden gem. Anyway, have listened to it quite a bit the past few years – love the lyrics. “I love nobody and nobody loves me. I need a lifeline now to gather me in. There must be someone out there, but I see nobody here, just bottles of beer, watch them all fall down.”
‘Heavy Duty’ – I’ve actually lost track of how many different versions of this song there are!! *lol* I love them all though my favourite’s probably the one I heard first, which was the free download one. The Phantom309 one’s fab too and comes a close 2nd, with this one in third place. I’m thinking this is the one that’s *almost* the same as the one on The Lost Tapes? There’s not a fifth version I’m forgetting is there?!! ;-P Yeah I’m pretty sure the Lost Tapes one is missing the “your battery is now fully-charged” bit at the end, which I love, so that would put The Lost Tapes version in 4th place! He he.
‘Beany Bean’ – Ah man, love this song!!! Ooberska! Will still wait until I get to the single to talk about it though.
‘Heroes ‘n’ Villains’ – I was thinking this one and ‘Car Song’ were pretty random inclusions as there are much stronger b-sides, but I’m really rather enjoying this having not listened to it in ages.
‘Car Song’ – Ah, it’s cool having the lyrics to this! I’ve never been able to make out bits of it – “Blue sky photosynthesis weather” – hee, like that.
‘Live Again’ – Argh, the ‘(Don’t Die Father)’ bit has gone from the title, but this song still makes me sad. Damn you Ooberman!

Maybe I shouldn’t attempt to listen to *all* of my Ooberman CDs in one day (and one blog entry) and should instead spread out the ooberlove, but no I think I’m gonna attempt listening to them all in one go! This blog entry’s already incredibly long and only likely to be of interest to ooberfans, so why not make it a bit longer? Hey, by the time I finally finish this A-Z malarkey I could probably compile all the entries into a book! Albeit a very rambly book with interspersed recipes for creme brulee and a whole load of personal issues and not-well-hidden pinings, but still! Ooh the CD’s finished…

Ooberman – Carried Away (album)
Ah, the third album! The one we wouldn’t have gotten if they hadn’t reformed. Thank god they did as tis a fab album.
‘Carried Away’ – I first heard this on the radio – was it XFM?! I can’t remember – they read out my e-mail though, or was it a text? Man, my memory’s terrible – anyway, I remember I said “Carry me away to heaven…” (oh yes, queen of cheesy statements I am!) as my instant reaction to the track was that it did sound rather heavenly and for some reason made me think of fairgrounds and carousels. It wasn’t until the album was released and I read through the lyrics booklet that I realised just how dark a song it actually is – about someone blowing their family away. Suddenly my ‘heavenly’ sentiments didn’t seem quite right (or were a bit too morbidly apt)!! Ha ha. Brilliant song though.
‘Crashing Ellipticals’ – Definitely my favourite on the album and without doubt one of my favourite Ooberman songs. Instantly blew me away! Have listened to it loads over the past 2 years. I can’t really put it into words, you just need to hear it.
‘Mary Grows Old’ – Another instant favourite, though for some reason I haven’t listened to it as much as I initially thought I would. It’s one of those that I really enjoy when I listen to it, but don’t tend to feel overly compelled to play very often. Really can’t explain why.
‘Beauty Of Your Soul’ – The single, released before the album, which means I kinda overplayed it! Only released on vinyl, though the MP3s were ‘found’ by an Oobtuber on the band’s webspace, along with the entirety of the album before it was released!! Sneaky geeky bunch that ooberfans are!! So yeah, was nice to be able to listen to the single and b-sides without having to rip them from the vinyl, plus I was actually really good with the album – I downloaded the zip file but only listened to a few of the tracks before the album was released, even though they were all sitting there on my hard drive. The ones I listened to being ones that I already had other versions of, such as this one – ‘Lavender Blue’. It’s not any different to the free download one but the quality’s better. Same with ‘Falling Down’. ‘Bong’ is different, but I’ll get to that in a bit. But yeah, was quite impressed with my self-control there!! Although I think I might have gotten the album early and for free anyway as had been helping Danny out with their MySpace and sending friends requests. Hee hee.
‘Easy’ – Ah, love this. Took a little while to grow on me but it’s one of my most listened to tracks on the album, definitely. I love “What I’ve got to do is square the circle, prove the point and draw the line” and then “But what’s this? I’ve been betrayed. After all this time the circle was a square!”. Maybe it’s my inner maths geek coming out.
‘Eye Of The Storm’ – Ah, another Andy song – this one taken from the Ooberon album which I’ll blog about another time – I think this entry’s gonna be long enough with just my Ooberman ramble.
‘Twinkling Aurora’ – Ah the customary instrumental track! it wouldn’t be an Ooberman album without one πŸ˜‰ Also serves as a taster for Dan’s Symphonika project. I think it’s partly why I find it difficult to view this album as an album – I see it more as a collection of songs – 3 of them I knew already, this one’s more Symphonika and the previous one’s Ooberon. It’s a brilliant collection of songs, don’t get me wrong, but I’ve never been able to compare it to the first 2 albums for some reason. I hope there’ll be a 4th album in the not toooooo distant future though. And am looking forward to The Magic Theatre album from Dan and Sophie too. Plus Andy and Steve better do another Ooberon album damn it! But also a 4th Ooberman album, yes. πŸ˜›
‘Far Far Away’ – Ah, another one I’ve listened to a lot the past couple of years – more and more so infact. Brilliant song.
‘Bong’ – Ah, Bong!!! Yes it is about what you think. I’m sure there was a point at which they said they’d never actually release this song, though they used to do it live. It then popped up on ‘Rare Oob’ which was a nice treat, but then a newly recorded version popped up here too! Woo. It took me a while to get used to this faster version with slightly different lyrics, but also the welcome addition of Sophie, but I think I definitely prefer it now to the one on ‘Rare Oob’.
‘Go To Sleep’ – this is another of those songs that I enjoy when I listen to it, but for some reason rarely feel inclined to listen to it. I really like the spoken word bit and the strings in it are great.
Overall the album flies by – although I have just noticed it’s only about 35 minutes long, which would kinda explain that!! But hey, I suppose I did criticise Hey Petrunko slightly for being too long, so can I complain that this one’s too short?! Hmm, yeah I think I can!! ;-P

Ooberman – The Lost Tapes
I’ve categorised this along with the albums as it’s kinda been billed as that, though maybe it should go at the end with ‘Rare Oob’ as I see it more as a partner to that compilation, but hey, tis here now so here it shall stay. As you can possibly tell from the title (or if you’re still reading then you’re probably familiar with it anyway!) it’s a collection of rare stuff and unreleased stuff, spanning 1991 – 2007! Yep, that means there’s quite a variation in quality! It’s probably just one for the more hardcore fans, but tis an interesting insight into the band’s history. Some tracks I already had on ‘Rare Oob’ but others I’d never heard before, so was quite exciting to get. Happily I managed to win it through a competition on the band’s website and MySpace though as I was a bit poor at the time! I also wanted to wait until the entire band could sign it (as Andy and Steve were on holiday), so I got it a while after it was released, but nothing wrong with a bit of anticipation! Plus it meant I could be all smug by having a nice signed copy, hee hee.
‘Growing Old’ – one I already had on Rare Oob, but one I really like. The oldest song on here as they run chronologically. Not obviously the oldest though – I prefer it to quite a few of the much later ones infact. I really like that the inlay notes give you a history to the tracks too.
‘Loveshit Ricochet’ – Ah!! Not one I had on any other release, but I had a downloaded MP3 that Will had posted on the Oobtube. Not sure where that originated from… Anyway, I’d heard people talk about it for a while before I actually got hold of it – sometimes fondly, sometimes not. It’s not an obvious Ooberman track and yes sounds pretty Pet Shop Boys, but that’s not a bad thing – I really really like this song actually.
‘Time Hurts’ – Hee, this is described as ‘part two of the album’s two-part homage to the Pet Shop Boys’. I think it’s only my 2nd time of listening to it actually – I don’t think I knew what to make of it the first time but am quite enjoying it now.
Oh my god it’s twenty past 5 already!! I hope I *can* fit in all the Ooberman CDs today! Hee hee, tis mostly just singles after this so I should be ok. Hmm, where are those peanuts and cashews?
‘I Know What You’re Saying’ – think this is only my 2nd time of listening to this too. Again I think I’m enjoying it more this time.
‘Don’t We Make A Pair’ – Ah, this one on the other hand I’ve actually listened to quite a few times – it’s really sweet.
‘Ride Me Home’ – Another I’ve only listened to once before. Still not sure what I think of this one – it’s hard to actually pick out the melody to be honest.
‘Bubbles Bursting’ – This one’s growing on me.
‘Brave Men And Beautiful Women’ – One of my favourites of the previously-unheard songs on here, definitely. This one and ‘Rosie Mel’ I reckon.
‘Come What May’ – Hee, what to say about this? Possibly the least-obviously-Ooberman song. I know their music’s pretty diverse anyway, but this is like they suddenly started channelling Ladysmith Black Mambazo or something! Although it’s somewhat disturbingly and almost annoyingly catchy!! Seriously I don’t know if I love it or hate it!
‘Rebels For A Day’ – Love this – it fades out though rather than just suddenly stopping (like the Rare Oob version does), which throws me as am used to listening to the non-fading version.
‘Rosie Mel’ – Already mentioned this is a favourite of the ones I hadn’t heard before. “She turns up with Pot Noodles and a smile”. Hee. Plus the random Elvis-style bit at the end cracks me up. How could Danny’s girlfriend at the time not like it? Pff.
‘Heavy Duty’ – Ah yes tis the same as the Hey Petrunko Plus one but without the end bit. Good to know my memory and geeky song knowledge haven’t entirely desserted me.
‘Pills For Popplewell’ – I should really rip this version as the mix on it is better than the one on Rare Oob. Love this song too, it’s nuts.
‘You’re Too Beautiful’ – To say this is the best song on this CD somewhat plays down how great it is! Tis one of their best songs full stop. It’s also supposed to be a taster for The Magic Theatre project, which helps explain my excited anticipation of that. I know other stuff’s held it up, but I hope we won’t have to wait tooooo long for it.

Ooberman – Blossoms Falling (single promo)

Ooberman – Blossoms Falling (single)
‘Grey’ – Ah, the fabness of Ooberman b-sides. This is a beautiful song and I must have listened to it a fair few times over the years.
’13’ – The first time I heard this I wasn’t sure what to think – the rhythm’s a bit disjointed and takes a while to get used to. Looove it though – about thinking back nostalgically to when you were 13 and missing that optimism and innocence, but then remembering the downsides to it too and actually being quite grateful you’re not 13 any more!

Ooberman – Million Suns (single) CD1
Ah yes, this is the one that says it’s CD1, but it’s actually CD2! Luckily the one I’ve got that says it’s CD2 is actually CD1! Only some of them were accidentally backwards though and there are apparently ones out there that actually have the right songs on them.
‘DoDo Was Made For Heaven’ – probably one of the least liked Ooberman songs generally. It’s not one of my personal favourites either, though I do have a bit of a soft spot for it – I find it incredibly catchy – it’ll often pop into my head for no obvious reason. Plus if there’s any mention of DoDos it will naturally pop in there too. It’s the “nothing was vicious in Mauritius bit” that does it. Oh, actually, the “DoDo was made for heaven” bit is pretty catchy too!!
‘When Summer’s Gone’ – another of those songs I don’t listen to very often but enjoy when I do. Ooberman seem to have lots of those. And yay it’s one of the many oobersongs that mentions cider! Hee hee.

Ooberman – Million Suns (single) CD2
Really CD1, but hey.
‘Sur La Plage’ – I’d forgotten this was a b-side on here! How random.
‘Pa3uh Budut Coh’ – How are you actually supposed to write this? With Russian letters presumably. It is Russian yeah?! I’ve never actually been that sure as to whether I actually like this or not. It’s so short that it’s finished before I can make my mind up! Hee. But maybe that’s a good thing. I dunno…

Hmm, maybe I should take a break now and get some food. I can feel my brain power waning! Need re-fueling! Ok, I’ll be back…

*time passes, though not that much*

Ta da! Did you miss me? Is anyone still reading this? Do I even care? Has living on my own done strange things to my mental stability? Did I ever have any mental stability? All important questions… Anyway, back to the music!

Ooberman – Tears From A Willow (single promo)
Annoyingly this is actually in a sleeve that says it’s an album sampler for The Magic Treehouse! I bought it from a little music shop in Norwich and was most confused when I got it home and took the CD out – not that a promo of Tears From A Willow was a bad thing, but it’s always bothered me it’s in the wrong sleeve and that I don’t actually have the album sampler! I did go back to the shop to see if they had the other mismatched partners, but alas they’d received it the way it was! It does mean I have the radio edit of Tears From A Willow though, with ‘mushroom tea’ in place of ‘LSD’, he he. Although I think this CD must have gotten really scratched or something as it’s skipping a bit, tis rather annoying.
‘Igloo II: Yellow Snow’ – Ah, the b-side that was only released on vinyl. I love finding promos that let you have CD-quality versions of songs you’d otherwise have to rip from vinyl. And happily I ripped this song before this CD started going mental. Like its partner song ‘Why Did My Igloo Collapse?’ tis another quintissential Ooberman song. Partly sweet and innocent and partly really not!!! Ha ha. “I’ll show you mine if you show me yours…”

Aw man, I’m eating a pizza while typing this (no I didn’t even take a proper break for food!) and although I ordered chicken ones from Tescos, they were out of stock so substituted spicy meat ones. If my sinuses had been blocked before they’re definitely not now! Not that it’s overly spicy, but I am a total wuss. Hmm, this isn’t really filling me up – what else can I eat that doesn’t require too much hassle, the need to wash a plate or having to move away from my computer in order to eat it? Ha ha, how tragic am I? So not a great example of the joys of the single life. Although I have actually had a really enjoyable day in my own easily-pleased, living-in-my-head kind of way! Anyway, I’ll nibble some more nuts (ooh-er) for now and then quite likely have an ice-cream or something! He he, so healthy! Although I did have half a melon earlier, so at least I’ve ingested something healthy today. Although not long before that I’d had crumpets dripping in butter, so I think the unhealthy foods are winning! I need to put some weight on though, so hell bring on the ice-cream! Just a shame I don’t have any cheesecake at the mo. Mmmmmmm cheesecake. Erm, I’m supposed to be listening to music right? Ok, should do that…

Ooberman – Tears From A Willow (single)
Ah my first Ooberman CD! It really means a lot to me, as you’ve probably gathered. I’ve mentioned the single itself, but the b-sides on here are some of Ooberman’s best too. Infact the first of the b-sides is my favourite Ooberman song and definitely in my top 5 most favourite songs ever.
‘Moth To A Flame’ – I’m not even sure I can express how much I love this song actually – I’ve always been able to relate to it quite easily and it just means a lot to me. “I was too shy to tell you just how I felt about you, kinda hoped that my anxiety would turn to ESP and you would notice”. Oh the number of times I’ve felt like that! About liking someone who just sees you as a friend or doesn’t even notice you at all! Granted I’ve been on both sides of that little scenario and neither’s particularly enjoyable, but this song’s a warm beacon to the introverts of the world. Makes you realise you’re not alone in your romantic ineptitude! About wanting to say “fuck you” and not pine over someone who doesn’t see you in that way, but at the same time not being able to help it – the whole moth to a flame analogy. Musically it’s really strong as well and has the changing styles that I always love in a song, so yeah, love it, more than I can describe.
‘Danny Boy’ – This is a brilliant b-side too. No it’s not *that* Danny Boy!! I’m really struggling to explain why it’s so great though – I just find it really moving – it’s got a great atmosphere to it – you almost feel like you’re out there in the rain, just trying to hold on tight until the storm passes. Metaphorically y’know, but kinda physically too.

Ooberman – Shorley Wall (single promo)
The plastic sleeve this is in tells me that it was Β£1.50 from the CD Centre. Aw, I miss the CD Centre. Anyway, I bought this there and then later realised I already owned the promo of Shorley Wall! Oh well.

Ooberman – Shorley Wall (single promo)
Hmm deja vu.

Ooberman – Shorley Wall (single) CD1
I remember this single was released not long after I saw Ooberman for the first time πŸ™‚ Or was it just before?! There’s another bit of my memory I’ve killed with beer. Anyway…
‘Wasteland Of Souls’ – I remember they played this when I saw them live, whether it was just before or just after this single!! Oh no, now I’m tempted to find the gig ticket and cross-reference the dates. No Chantal, tis madness! No-one actually cares that much!! Oh damn I might do that in a mo – I know where the ticket should be. Anyway, I’m sure they said this song was about trying to find love at an indie club night in Leeds. Hee. Ok, gig ticket… Ooberman at The Cockpit, aha! Got one from 30th March 2000 and one from 10th December 2000. Must have been the first one, the March one… and Shorley Wall was released as a single when?… Amazon tells me 13th March 2000! Aha!! About 2 1/2 weeks before the gig. Yes, yes, yes. I thought I’d been familiar with the b-sides before hearing that one there, but like I said, my memory’s dodgy.
‘Blossoms Falling (Acoustic Version)’ – I love Blossoms Falling anyway, but this version’s just so so beautiful – I fell in love with it the first time I heard it and I still listen to it a lot.

Ooberman – Shorley Wall (single) CD2
Ok I’m quite pleased this is my last playing of Shorley Wall – any more in such quick succession and it’s gonna start to annoy me, which I really don’t want to happen.
‘Golden Fall’ – Another one I don’t actually listen to that often, but again enjoy when I do! I must spend most of my time listening to an elite subset of songs or something. I suppose that’s the same with all bands though – you listen to your favourites more often than the ones you just ‘like’. It seems more pronounced here though.
‘Tears From A Willow (Sound 5’s Disko 77 Mix)’ – generally I’m not big on remixes, but Ooberman have only released good ones actually – I quite like this, though it’s possibly a little long. I’m sure Sound 5 did one of my favourite remixes of something else too – quite possibly The Ballad Of Tom Jones. Not as good as the Cocktail Lounge mix, but what is?

Ooberman – Dolphin Blue (single)
Now, I’m sure this was released either just before or just after the other Leeds Cockpit gig I went to!! *lol* That gig was when? 10th December 2000. And this was released… 7th May 2002! Ha ha ha, of course it wasn’t back in 2000! What was I thinking? It was the Ooberman Annual released about that time. Did I go to a gig near the release of Dolphin Blue?! Ha ha ha… hmmm… *searches through tickets*… ooh, Preston Warehouse – 26th June 2002! That’s pretty soon after. Woohoo! Anyway, not up there with my favourite Ooberman songs, but I do have a soft spot for it. I really like the style of it.
‘C’est La Vie (C’est La Meme Chose)’ – Great song. Good fun and catchy. “I don’t need the karma sutra telling me everybody’s having more than me”. And am seemingly a sucker for random french lyrics.
‘Laughter Lines’ – Love, love, love this song. Not as much as Moth To A Flame, though it’s in a similar genre in my brain – about thinking back to someone you used to fancy and wondering what would have happened if you’d been less shy and had actually made your feelings known – would you have gotten together? Would it have worked out, or would you have lost them and gotten hurt more? “Maybe I was safer never trying – you’d be too much to lose”. “Maybe I should call you on a wave of romance. Ask you, do you remember if I ever had a chance? But someone as beautiful as you are must be tied-down by now”. And so beautiful with just the piano – has always reminded me a bit of Queen’s ‘My Melancholy Blues’ for that reason.

Ooberman – Bluebell Morning (promo)
Just Bluebell Morning and SnakeDance on this one…

Ooberman – Bluebell Morning (promo)
…whereas this one’s the whole EP! He he.
OMG it’s 9pm!!! How the hell did that happen? I was hoping to watch a film after this, but I’ve still got a few CDs to go, including all of Rare Oob! Hmmmmm… do I give up on trying to listen to all Ooberman CDs in one day? Or keep going because I set myself it as a challenge and in the words of Heavy Duty – “I am not a quitter!” I realise I’m just talking to myself here as no-one can read this until I actually post it, at which point I’ll have already made this decision, but still I feel inclined to ask! Although I think I’ve already answered it too – I’m not a quitter – I decided to listen to all my Ooberman CDs today, so that’s what I must do! If I stop now then I might as well have stopped after the first few CDs and actually done something more productive today. Either I confess I’ve wasted the day, or I keep going and try to pass it off as some kind of strange musical feat. Not that it really matters if I’ve wasted the day, but I seem to need to justify it to myself! Hmm… you know earlier when I asked if I get weirder the longer I live on my own? Yeah, I think I might have just answered that…

Ooberman – Bluebell Morning EP
I remember trying to find this in the shops the day it was released, annoyingly not being able to, so then ordering it online. HMV then said they were awaiting more stock or something and it was gonna take a while, so I checked in the shops again – I think the supplies had just taken a while to get there cos I did eventually manage to buy it. I left my order with HMV online too though, just to see when they’d finally tell me they didn’t have it, as I just kept getting messages that they were awaiting more stock. According to the promo sticker on the previous CD, this was released 13th May 2002, so when I was in my final year at uni and infact nearly finished. Anyway, I graduated, moved away from Leeds and forgot I still had an order placed for this CD with the delivery address in Leeds. I can’t remember when it was, but it must have been September at the earliest, when I got an e-mail telling me that my CD had dispatched! Hilarious. As my friend Anna was still living in the flat I told her to just open it and keep it herself, which she did. And of course she really liked it.
‘Souls Of The Northern Lights’ – Another one I haven’t listened to for ages and had forgotten how good it is!!!

I just realised I’ve only got 2 1/2 hours left before it’s no longer today! The remaining CDs shouldn’t take me that long though, surely? *tries to estimate* Hmm, if all remaining songs are 3 minutes long then it’ll take me just under 2 hours! Eep! It may become a race against time!!

Ooberman – Beany Bean (single promo)
Just the one song, which I’m actually quite grateful about right now! I’m starting to flag a bit.

Ooberman – Beany Bean (single promo)
This promo, on the other hand, has Beany Bean but then also First Day Of The Holidays as a double A side! Were they originally going to be released like that?!

Ooberman – Beany Bean (single) CD1
Yes I realise I still haven’t actually talked about Beany Bean and I do really want to – I just hope I can do it justice now my brain’s starting to shut down slightly. Tis definitely one of my favourite Ooberman songs. I remember having a download of the video before the single was actually released and playing it somewhat endlessly. I suppose it’s a bit of an odd one, being ska and with spoken word bits – infact I had part of it set as my ringtone once when I was working in Worcester and after someone had phoned me my friends in the office were like “what the hell was that ringtone?!?” – they thought it was incredibly strange for some reason, which surprised me as I just love it! Maybe it was just hearing a tiny snapshot of the song – but hey, whatever. And yeah ok my love of the single may also be slightly influenced by the fact I’m on the cover! Ha ha. For those who haven’t seen the cover, hell I can probably find it… meh, I can only find really small images! Anyway, it gives you an idea (edit: this image is actually larger than the original one I posted):

Hopefully you can kinda tell that’s a plate of beans where the beans have peoples’ heads on! It’s best if you’ve got the vinyl as the picture’s bigger. Anyway, when Danny was putting the artwork together he asked fans on the Oobtube to send him any famous peoples’ heads for possible inclusion!! He said he’d also put on some fans’ heads if they wanted to send their own in too. If you vaguely know me at all then you’ll know I can’t resist stuff like that!! I think I sent in some ridiculously huge number of heads – 52 or something – I used to have Danny’s reply of thanks/amazement but annoyingly it got lost one time when I hadn’t logged into Hotmail for ages and they deleted all my e-mails πŸ™ Anyway, I remember asking him how progress was going when I saw them in Preston, then was v pleased when the single finally came out and I was on it myself! Woo πŸ˜€ Next to the Queen Mum I am! And not far beneath Brian May’s feet! Hee hee. My associations with Ooberman seem to be plagued by Queen references – not that that’s a bad thing.

Ooberman – Beany Bean (single) CD1
Yes I do indeed own 2 copies of this CD! Not entirely randomly I hasten to add. I did just have the one, plus one copy of CD2, as naturally bought them when they were released. However, when I then saw Ooberman at Cardiff Barfly with my friend Chris, and the band were signing things afterwards, Chris decided that I just had to get a copy of Beany Bean signed, seeing as I’m on it. Personally I wasn’t that fussed as had just bought a copy of ‘The Story So Far…’ cassette and was getting that signed by everyone. But he insisted and bought me this additional copy of CD1 (as weirdly enough I hadn’t brought mine with me!). However, for some reason I seemed to only manage to get Danny and Sophia to sign it, though did get my cassette signed by everyone. Not sure how that happened. Sophie’s signature makes me laugh as she put ‘To Chantal! (Hooray)’, which doesn’t make much sense on its own, but it’s because she’d spelled my name wrong on the Story So Far cassette and had had to turn an ‘e’ into an ‘a’ when Andy corrected her and told her she should visit the Oobtube more often! Hee πŸ˜€ Oh, actually, looking at the cassette, she also initially put an ‘s’ instead of a ‘c’! Whoops. Jaymie also had to turn an ‘e’ into an ‘a’. Steve was the most sensible and didn’t attempt to spell my name, although that might have been because he was ill and hiding round a corner. That was one of my favourite gigs though – great night.

Ooberman – Beany Bean (single) CD2
‘Beany Bean’ – “And it just seems like the whole point of life is just to grow old and die and maybe get a family or something, but what a waste of time”. I’m just realising that my favourite Ooberman lyrics tend to be the somewhat cynically depressing ones! Hmm. “Get me a Jack D, a double Jack D”. NowΒ there’sΒ an idea!!! *gets Jack D* What? The song told me to!!!! And my lager had just run out.

Half 10. Hmm, depending on the run-time of Rare Oob, I think this is going to be a squeeze to fit in before midnight!! I’m getting a bit of a 2nd wind now though.

Ooberman – First Day Of The Holidays (single)
Ah, the ‘radio mix’. I don’t actually like the radio mix! Although I suppose with my current race against time I should be thankful that it’s shorter!! ;-P
‘Goodbye Gadfly’ – Ah, one of the other ‘cider’ songs! Really like this song. Simple but moving.
‘Too Many Memories’ – Love this. I know it’s really the same song as ‘The Things I Have Lost’, but I’ve still never gotten round to actually ripping that from vinyl, so this is the version I’m more familiar with. Heartbreakingly beautiful.

Ooberman – Crashing Ellipticals (single promo)
Only released as a download single, but found this CD promo on Ebay πŸ™‚ I generally don’t like the radio edit as much as the ‘proper’ version, but I have discovered it works better as a ringtone!!

Ooberman – Rare Oob
Ok, about an hour and 15 mins left before midnight and how long’s the running of this last CD?! 50 minutes!! Woohoo!! Hoorah for there being so many short songs on here! He he. This CD was part of the ‘Official Hey! Tour Bootleg Series’ – sold on the last tour, plus also through Townsend Records for a while. I could only afford to buy the one during the tour and sadly never got round to buying the others before they disappeared from Townsend. Most annoying as I’m such a completist! They never seem to crop up on Ebay either. I think there were just 2 others – one with b-sides and a live one, I think. This was the obvious one to buy as it contained songs I didn’t already have!
‘Back On The Avenue’ – Really like this! Infact this is a great compilation of songs. I possibly prefer it to The Lost Tapes actually! It’s really interesting getting to hear the demo versions of songs too.
‘Sur La Plage (Demo)’ – I love how this starts with a bit of ‘Amazing In Bed’. Tis one of my favourites of the demos actually.
‘Roll Me In Cotton (Demo)’ – Is this actually any different to the album version?! Ok it technically is, but it’s barely discernible. Not that that’s bad – infact I’m really pleased the album version stayed as stripped back as the demo as adding more instrumentation would just have ruined it.
’13 (Demo)’ – This is barely different to the final version too. But again not a bad thing.
‘Amazing In Bed (Demo)’ – Probably my favourite of the demos. I love the “Bonjour madame”, “Bonjour monsieur” bit in the middle. Whenever I listen to the album version now I hear that in my head!
‘Bees (Demo)’ – Hee, had forgotten how great this is!
‘Blossoms Falling (Demo)’ – Love this one too!
Ooh the CD’s nearing the end! The end is nigh! I really like the little medley of short songs that is ‘The Icicle Cave’, ‘He Commands The Ether’ (“he only meant to download his pornography into the space-time geometry”), ‘Pills For Popplewell’, ‘Bluebell Rap’ and ‘Bong’.
Oh my god, ‘Bong’ is playing now – the last song! I did it! Hell yeah!! I’m mental but at least I’m not a quitter!

Thank you and good night!!

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