Good Cop: Wow! Sallie Ford & the Sound Outside! No more reviewing children’s bands and organ jazz records!
Bad Cop: Don’t hold your breath, we’re not off the Columbus shuttle yet.
Good Cop: You mean the Scranton shuttle.
Bad Cop: Aaah, you’re right. Scranton used to be a Phillies farm team. They made Red Baron beer there.
Good Cop: Red Baron Beer?
Bad Cop: It had cherry syrup in it. An early alco-pop. Before your time.
Good Cop: I see. So here we are at Pier 84, it’s Thursday, July 11, the sun is going down, it’s going to be a beautiful cool night on the water and we’re about to see a great band from Portland.
Bad Cop: That’s Oregon. Portland, Oregon. More than one Portland in the world. Portland cement doesn’t come from Oregon, either.
Good Cop: Where does it come from?
Bad Cop: I dunno. Is there a Portland, Jamaica?
Good Cop: I dunno. Google it. Speaking of which, I can’t find the opening act.
Bad Cop: What are they called?
Good Cop. Waxahachie. It’s a Dallas suburb.
Bad Cop [types on his phone]: I can’t either. Unless they’re an Indian band.
Good Cop: Nope. Did you try Soundcloud?
Bad Cop [typing again]: Nope. [continues typing] No Bandcamp, no Youtube, no Reverbnation. Um, not even a Myspace. Facebook isn’t gonna get me anywhere. Nice branding, dudes.
Good Cop: All that’s coming up is the Texas stuff. And they just got back from a European tour.
Bad Cop: Nothing on the web and they get a European tour. I don’t get it. I mean, I do. I hate indie rock.
Good Cop: Yeah, I know you do. But I like this band. The singer has a pretty voice, she can write a catchy tune and play real guitar chords too.
Bad Cop: Big deal. That should be a sine qua non. All the songs sound the same. I’m bored.
Good Cop: Don’t use Latin words, nobody will know what you mean. You should give this girl some credit, she can actually carry a tune and you know that’s not an indie rock thing.
Bad Cop: Ooooh, I can actually play a few cowboy chords that any eight-year-old can learn, that makes me a real rebel! I might get banned from all the trendy boutiques in Bushwick!
Good Cop: C’mon, all the songs don’t sound the same, She just hit her distortion pedal.
Bad Cop: Five songs too late. And the rhythm section is awful. The drummer is stiff and the bassist can barely play.
Good Cop: At least he isn’t trying to be Geddy Lee.
Bad Cop: The absence of pain does not equal pleasure.
Good Cop: Well, I still think the songs are pretty. And she sings on key…for the most part.
Bad Cop: That’s what pisses me off about indie rock. You’re right, she does have a perfectly good voice. And then she does that dumbass, blase, Lana Del Rey, “I’m going to sing flat because daddy’s going to put the production of my new ep on his credit card whether or not I can hit the notes, and I really can, but I’m too chickenshit to try because that might make me different from the rest of the lame-ass spoiled brats I hang out with.”
Good Cop; OK, that’s it. Look at how many people are leaving.
Bad Cop: Their loss. I’m psyched for Sallie Ford.
Good Cop: You’re out of character. You’re supposed to hate everything.
Bad Cop: I sort of do. But I like that record she put out.
Good Cop: I wonder if you can get a real record.
Bad Cop: I’ll bet you can get it on vinyl. I’d actually buy it if there were any record stores left. Ooh, here she comes. [gleeful grin] WARDROBE MALFUNCTION!
Good Cop: [disdainfully] Pig. What’s that guitar she’s got?
Bad Cop: A Fender Jaguar. 1960s guitar. Cheap back then but sounds great. Look, the lead player, whatshisname, he’s got a Gibson SG. This is gonna be fun.
Good Cop: That’s Jeffrey Munger. Wow, that guy is fast!
Bad Cop: Sallie Ford isn’t bad either. And she’s prettier than that suburban Texas girl.
Good Cop: Don’t be a sexist pig. What’s this song?
Bad Cop: I dunno. Takes balls to open with an instrumental. Damn, did you see that tremolo-picking? That guy Munger can really play. Reminds me of the guy in Julia Haltigan‘s band…
Good Cop: Dick Dale, wouldn’t you say?. How would you describe this music?
Bad Cop: Hey, don’t make me do all the heavy lifting. How would YOU describe this music?
Good Cop: I’d say it’s catchy, and fun, and you can dance to it. It has a 60s biker movie thing. Very retro. Kind of like the Cramps, but not kitschy. And surf music. And soul music. Old soul music, like Sharon Jones, but played rock style. What would you say?
Bad Cop: Dark garage rock with surf and soul influences. I like how she references old styles but isn’t reverential. That girl who opened was scared to death up there, afraid she might do something that might make her stand out from the crowd. Sallie Ford couldn’t care less.
Good Cop: I love how she takes an oldtime gospel song and makes a rock song out of it. What’s this one called?
Bad Cop: It’s called Devil. You’ll like this one. This is They Told Me. Link Wray all over the place.
Good Cop: That line is great. “They told me I shouldn’t be so intense, how the hell would that make any sense?”
[midway through the song, a Circle Line harbor cruise boat approaches the dock, blasting cheesy corporate hip-hop. The band notice this and look at each other quizzically]
Jeffrey Munger [from the stage, motions to the boat]: They should come over here.
[Bad Cop and Good Cop are at a rare loss for words. Bad Cop shakes his head, disgusted]
Munger [to the audience, laughing]: We were going to play on the boat but they offered us more money here.
Good Cop: At least you can’t hear the boat when the music’s loud.
Bad Cop: Yeah, good thing they decided to do this one electric. On the record it’s acoustic. Sounds like Mamie Minch.
Good Cop: What song is this?
Bad Cop: This is Paris. It’s a pun. Paris, short for “parasite.”
Good Cop: OK, what about this oldtime swing tune? Is this a cover?
Bad Cop: No, it’s an original. It’s called Do Me Right. You know, hokum blues, innuendo, PG-rated sex tune. Next time you’re doing the homework and I’m showing up late.
Good Cop: OK, deal.
Bad Cop: This rhythm section really swings. Who are these guys?
Good Cop: That’a Ford Tennis playing the drums and Tyler Tornfelt playing bass.
Bad Cop: That’s funny. Sallie Ford and Ford Tennis. What’s the likelihood? I wonder if he’s related to Whiting Tennis. All the Tennises have funny names.
Good Cop: Who’s Whiting Tennis?
Bad Cop: He’s a songwriter. From Seattle. A very good painter too.
[a few songs later] Bad Cop: Well, did you have fun?
Good Cop: I did. I can’t wait to see another show with you. Maybe we can do this as a regular thing. I mean, the blog wouldn’t have sent us to such a good show if they weren’t planning to use us again, you think?
Bad Cop: Be careful what you wish for [pulls a spring water bottle with a faded label out of his backpack and takes a swig].
Good Cop: Hey, can I have some of that?
Bad Cop: Sure! [hands bottle over to Good Cop, who uncaps it and takes a quick drink. She gasps, spits and begins coughing, bent over at the waist. Bad Cop also bends at the waist, laughing uncontrollably. Good Cop recovers, looks down at the bottle and hurls the bottle at Bad Cop. The bottle hits him in the ribs, splashing him, then falls to the concrete and rolls away].
Bad Cop [bent over, gasping]: Aaaaah, my eye! Do you have any water?
Good Cop [furious]: NO! That’s why I asked you. And what did you give me, on a hot summer day? PURE VODKA! Bastard!
Bad Cop [rubbing his eye]: Dumbass rent-a-pigs. You could bring an entire distillery in here and they wouldn’t notice.
Next up: Good Cop and Bad Cop review Red Baraat.