Category : TV Music
A long time ago, I had been informed of the up-and-coming band Aqueduct by a web friend who lived in Oklahoma. Then a few days ago I came across some of their songs on the web and listened again. One song in particular seemed to stick out… it was Hardcore Days and Softcore Nights.
What struck me most about this song is that it seemed to be a cross mutation between the Folk Implosion and Rolling Stones “As Tears Go By”. Very weird indeed for starters, but not a bad song. Sort of the type that grows on you. Though, I didn’t like their other song Growing Up With GNR as much, I resolved to keep an ear out for them.
Continue reading “Aqueduct – Jaguar Commercial” …
Catch My Disease
[New West Records]
There’s a whole rash of indie artists with their music in commercials that we haven’t gotten to post about yet. Let’s start with Ben Lee. The former kid pop-meister sometimes known as “Mr. Danes” has been heard crooning his song “Catch My Disease” in Dell Commercials. It’s hard to miss his voice, I recognized it right away.
The song is the 4th track off of his album Awake Is The New Sleep and you’ll recognize it from the lines about, “My head is like a box, and that’s the way I like it”. The commercial features what looks like a college student driving around with a Dell rep in a go cart in a Dell factory. I don’t remember too much else, except I believe Donkey Kong shows up. In a fit of synchronicity, the college student looked a lot to me like Claire Danes’ co-star in “My So Called Life” – Devon Gummersall (he played Brian Krakow). Sorry Ben… don’t mean to bring up the past.
The Target Commercial indie music parade continues with the band Beulah, one of my all time E6 faves. I always get so distracted by the music that I forget what the actual commercial features… in this case, I just remember in the beginning it’s a teacher drawing a bunch of things in crayon or chalk on a wall that he then walks through as a classroom.
But anyhow, the important thing is that it’s them all right – the song being played is “Silver Lining” off The Coast Is Never Clear. It’s got the trademark trumpet indie pop lines, simple guitar groove and splashing drums that make them such a great band.
You know – the crazy thing is that earlier I’d heard an Apples In Stereo track for Target too, but I completely forgot about it until I heard the Beulah one! I’ll have to post about that one later…
So Here We Are
I think this is the first time I’ve heard a Saturn commercial playing an indie rock band that I knew. The band in question is of course Bloc Party and the song of theirs that was used is “So Here We Are” off of Silent Alarm. The commercial that used it is for the new 2007 line of Saturn cars including the Sky Roadster, VUE Hybrid SUV and one of the sedans that I don’t remember.
I must have heard the song in this commercial about 50 million times already. I wasn’t as into the Bloc Party (often misspelled Block Party) album when we received a copy of it awhile back but it’s sort of grown on me. Standard post-Interpol drony Brit-rock, but the song that they used was perfect auto-commercial music. It’s a bit more dreamy and shoe-gazey than their other tracks.
Hanging On The Telephone
Let’s see, it is right about…. NOW that you are wondering whether or not I’ve uploaded the wrong picture for this review. That don’t look like Cat Power does it? Well, it’s not but seeing as how Chan Marshall’s latest song for television which I just heard as music for a Cingular Allover Network commercial is not available anywhere (not even on Matador’s site), I figured I wouldn’t show a picture of one of her albums because it’d have nothing to do with this post.
I keep getting scooped by the awesome Stereogum as well as thee mighty Adtunes whenever I want to mention music on TV. I just don’t watch enough TV I guess. Oh wells. Anyhow, since Marshall’s take of the song “Hanging On The Telephone” is actually a cover of Blondie’s popular cover of The Nerves 1978 original song, I decided to dispense with Debbie Harry and go all the way back to The Nerves. To make things even more confusing, I couldn’t find the original album that The Nerves recorded this track on. The only place I could find it on was this “Come Out And Play” 1975-1978 Power Pop Anthology. Weird!
Anyhow, I had heard the song while watching a hockey game and I knew right away it was probably Chan Marshall… she has a pretty distinctive voice although I’ve been fooled before (the Adidas commercial featuring Karen O is a good example). The music is quite cool as well, though as I said before you need to actually catch the commercial in order to hear it. Some day the marketing geniuses will learn to make these things available somewhere… it just really seems like shooting yourself in the foot.
(P.S. the Itunes link actually goes to Blondie, because they don’t seem to have The Nerves version of the song on Itunes.)
How Can I Tell You
I had meant to post about the Cat Power – A Diamond Is Forever connection months ago. Perhaps I’m a bit too proud that I knew it was Chan Marshall from the first couple of seconds of the commercial the first time I saw it. But hey – you gotta be proud of something, right?
Really, though, she has a really distinctive voice that doesn’t make it tough. What was tougher was finding out that the actual song she was singing was by a fellow “Cat”. A fellow former Cat, that is, since Cat Stevens now goes by the name “Yusuf”.
Anyhow, the cover song for the Diamond Is Forever commercial is his song called “How Can I Tell You”. Unfortunately, it doesn’t actually exist as a real song (the link is to the Cat Stevens version.) . Also, it’s probably NOT a good idea to email Matador about where you can find the song.
Continue reading “Cat Power – Diamond Commercial” …
The Dandy Warhols
I Love You
I know that we are supposed to be somewhat of the “shiznet” when it comes to posting about indie music in commercials, but lately the finds have been far and few between. I’m not sure why that is because if anything the amount of indie bands being contacted to have their music appear in commercials has increased (well, maybe they’re all being asked by Hummer or something).
So when I heard the Dandy Warhols song “I Love You” the other day on TV, I immediately put down my soggy TV dinner and went to the computer to write about it. I just forgot to post about it until today. The song is off their 1997 release “The Dandy Warhols Come Down” and it’s difficult to mistake as it features them singing the words “I Love You” over and over again. I have this album. Not the worst song on it, and I guess it completely fits what the commercial for the Pontiac Solstice is trying to convey. But the ad agencies have already picked the Dandies catalog over to death. It’s time for something new, guys…
The Dandy Warhols
We Used To Be Friends
The music of the Dandy Warhols has shown up in a ton of different commercials like The Gap, as well as shows like The OC, Smallville. Most recently, they’ve contributed the theme song to the Veronica Mars TV show. The track is called “We Used To Be Friends” and is off their 2003 album “Welcome To The Monkey House“. Hellooo Vonnegut…
I remember hearing a radio interview with the Dandies and them saying that they toiled for quite awhile unloved in the U.S. before capturing the attention of the British and European press. Then when they came back, the hoopla followed them… and there was the ensuing fawning over them by the various music press who didn’t give them the time of the day a couple months earlier. One thing I also remember reading is that they’re true old school rock stars in the sense that they actually WANT to act like rock stars… none of this, OK we’re big now but it’s cooler to make like we’re not all that successful.
Continue reading “Dandy Warhols – Veronica Mars” …
It's OK To Think About Ending
The other day I was idly flipping channels on the TV as we all do when I came to rest on Channel 11 (which is FOX Broadcasting is my neck of the woods). My finger was hovering over the remote button ready to move on when I recognized the soft strains of Aaron Espinoza’s voice coming through. The show was House MD and I’d never watched it before but I was sort of surprised to hear them play the Earlimart song “It’s OK To Think About Ending” off their awesome CD Tremble and Tremble.
I did some searching online and found that the episode in question is called “Role Model” (#17) and the song appeared right at the closing scene. So I was sort of lucky to catch it. Kind of cool, and fit the mood pretty well.
Continue reading “Earlimart – House MD Show” …
[Honda Civic Commercial]
Continuing the car commerical parade, about a month ago I began hearing Honda Civic Hybrid commercials featuring the band Grandaddy. Seeing as we’re all huge Grandaddy fans we immediately recognized Jason Lytle singing on what seemed like a somewhat psychadelic commercial a la Polyphonic Spree or something with cartoon drawings leaking into the real life video. The song of theirs featured in the commercial is called “Nature Anthem” and is recognizable by it’s aw-shucks attitude and lyrics “climb up the side of the mountain…”
What was more difficult was figuring out where that song was from. I knew I’d seen a song title “Nacher Anthem” before somewhere and a bit of searching reminded me that it was originally released as a video off of the limited-edition version album of Sumday which featured an enhanced section that included a wiggy video a short film of theirs: “Nacher Anthem“. I’d completely forgotten about that.
Continue reading “Grandaddy – Honda Civic Commercial” …
I was watching TV the other day and a Liberty Mutual commercial came on that had pretty cool music, sort of like Sarah MacLaughlin but definitely different. Then I realized I’d heard it before and it was from the band Hem off of their Rabbit Songs CD. I couldn’t remember which song it was so I looked it up and it’s called “Half Acres”
Actually, what struck me most about the commercial wasn’t the music but the content. It depicts a chain of “random acts of kindness” where one person helps another (by picking up something the other person has dropped, for instance) and then the kindness is “transmitted” by someone else watching the kindness being done. What I like about the way it’s handled is that the person who helps another person DOESN’T necessarily receive some act of kindness themselves. It’s all about kindness without a selfish thought: you never know who’s watching so your actions can affect how other people act.
The commercial is called “Responsibility. What’s Your Policy” and is put together by Hill-Holliday (you can read more about the campaign at their site).
Selected Albums on Itunes:
Iron and Wine
Such Great Heights
I thought the world was coming to an end when I heard Sam Beam of Iron and Wine cover the Postal Service song “Such Great Heights”. Never mind that it’s an awesome song. I would have much rather him covered a DCFC song any day, but beggars can’t be choosers. The fact that it also appeared on the excellent Garden State soundtrack was pretty cool and I guess it didn’t hurt his publicity.
Continue reading “Iron and Wine – M&M Commercial” …
All right, here is a division of Sony that actually gets it. By “it” I mean how to market products through a visually stunning commercial that also features memorable (and good) indie music. This is the commercial for the Sony Bravia with music by José González.
All too often, companies completely drop the ball on offering up the actual video or music to their commercials. I never understand this. I mean, why in hell would you not want people to play your commericals OVER AND OVER on their computers because they think it’s cool? Why in hell would you not make it clear somewhere what band is playing the song in the commercial (and for those “made for commercial” songs, make preparations in case you see a lot of people liking that music). Screw the rights concerns and such, you’re a big sprawling company; figure it out by throwing money at it or something.
Anyhow, I’ve been wanting to write about the Bravia Commercial for awhile. Not only can you play and download the commercial in different sizes, but they even made an entire website (bravia-advert.com) devoted ONLY to the commercial that includes Behind the Scenes information, music downloads and pictures.
Why would you want all that info? Well, it is a visually stunning commercial. You have to see it for yourself but it basically involves a gazillion (250,000 actually) multi-colored Superballs simultaneously bouncing down a San Francisco Street. They let all of them go at once. The effect is unreal… I couldn’t believe this was not computer generated but it’s definitely real.
So, to complete their commercial they set it to a really awesome track by indie folk troubadour José González (note the spelling, it’s Gonzalez with a “Z”, not Gonzales). The track is called “Heartbeats” and is off his first album Veneer. Quite a few folks have compared him to Nick Drake and the resemblance is uncanny at times. People are going to say Iron and Wine as a reference point too. But I think his mostly fingerpicked acoustic guitar music can stand on it’s own for it’s sheer beauty and timelessness. And it certainly didn’t hurt to have it in this commercial.
OK, the only slight hitch in all this is: I’ve never seen this commercial on TV. I believe it’s only been shown in Europe. One of these days we’ll get some good commercials over in the U.S….
Luna’s slo-mo masterpiece Penthouse is one of my favorite albums of theirs… so I spotted their latest foray into music in commericals immediately – even though it’s the unlisted bonus track on the album. The music appears in a recent Cadillac Escalade commerical and fits pretty well into the vibe. They must’ve gotten someone who knows more about indie pop at Cadillac’s commercial music group, because lately their commericals have really been picking some good ones (there is one with a great song by M. Ward).
Unfortunately the snippet of song that is repeated omits what I think is the funniest part of the song, where in the background you can hear someone sing-speak “OOh-ooh” in a really high voice once in awhile. I can’t really explain it, you just have to hear the full song for yourself since it’s not in the commercial.
I’ve seen a lot of people mislabel this song. It’s true that Laetitia Sadier from Stereolab does sing the girl part on this song along with Wareham, this is not a Luna original. It’s a cover of a Serge Gainsbourg song where Brigitte Bardot sings the girl part. A great unlisted track on the album… unfortunately, I don’t believe they have the bonus track from Penthouse on Itunes… they do seem to have a version on Luna Live, though.
Here Comes The Sun Again
M. Ward, m. Ward, m ward – seems like everywhere I go the sky is pouring M. Ward. For good reason, I’d guess. I had really got into his songs after getting Transistor Radio and seeing him open up for Dios (Malos), but his latest album Post-War is just as strong. The music is so good, I totally forgive him for being music buddies with Conor Oberst on that Bright Eyes performance on Austin City Limits.
Here’s another place you’ll hear his songs in: commercials. This is another one I’d meant to write about immediately but it got pushed to the backburner for so long. Cadillac has been stepping up to the plate when it comes to using “indie” artists in their commercials.
The M. Ward song used in the Cadillac commercials was “Here Comes The Sun Again”. I heard it almost non-stop for awhile some months back and then they stopped playing it. I don’t even remember which model it was for (typical), but what I remember most about the commercial is the car being driven through a forest and the sunlight filtering through the leaves. It’s a great song – he really has that “ancient wise voice stuck in a young person’s body” phenomenon going.
Interestingly, I keep getting this particular song mixed up with “Paul’s Song” which is a few tracks back on Transistor. And that’s actually where I bit the first sentence of this post from, hehe.
Here Comes The Sun Again
The Opposite Side Of The Sea
I’m going to admit that I’m a little bit out of my league trying to review this Oren Lavie CD. No doubt it’s a wonderful collections of smoky, quirky, mellow tunes. And actually, there is a very good chance that you’ve already heard a song. The opening track, “Her Morning Elegance” was used in a Chevy Malibu commercial.
I know I got one reference correct immediately, even though it’s an easy one – Nick Drake‘s footprint is everywhere. Oren’s voice is hushed, even ragged sounding at times, which goes pretty well with the sparse arrangements. No pounding drums here. There are a lot of orchestral arrangements, at times a bit whimsical. Sometimes it reminds me of the strings on The Beatles’ “Eleanor Rigby”. The other name that comes to mind is Leonard Cohen, though the songs aren’t as bleak. Also, uh, Sting? Beyond that, I’m afraid I’m going to have to let this one ride in the Ipod for a bit.
Now, I haven’t actually seen this commercial that features The Pixies song Velouria. Why? Because it had only been broadcast in the UK this year. That’s quite unfortunate because I would have taken The Pixies over the recent so-called punk or “emo” choices of commercial makers in the U.S. Come on you pilgrim, it’s the Pixies – ground zero for a thousand billion fascinated punks and musical imitators everywhere.
Velouria is off of their awsome Bossanova album which a lot of people have noted sounds quite different from their other albums such as Surfer Rosa and Come On Pilgrim. It’s like they’ve collected all the mayhem and roughness of their other work and distilled it into a refined dark punk album that has a really angry sheen to it. Less raw, but nevertheless engaging in a grim way.
Continue reading “Pixies – Wannadoo Commercial” …
The Postal Service
Such Great Heights
I caught a lot of flack for dissing The Postal Service early on, being a long time DCFC fan myself. I just thought that it sounded like Gibbard’s voice added to an unknown “X” electronica band. However, with the recent blowup of DCFC (signing to Atlantic, touring with Coldplay, and becoming an OC-teenybopper fave of the month), I think I’ve softened my stance a bit on Postal Service, and consequently gotten a bit harsher on DCFC. And hey, let’s not forget about All Star Quarterback…
Anyhow, the world seems to love anything Gibbard touches right now. We’ve talked previously about “Such Great Heights” being used in movies as well as being covered by Iron and Wine (whose cover was consequently used in a movie itself). The advertising junkies can’t seem to get enough of the song – the latest pandering corpo-behemoth being Kaiser Permanente. “Such Great Heights” appears on The Postal Service’s full length album “Give Up”.
Continue reading “Postal Service – Kaiser Permanente Commercial” …
OK, so I confess that I absolutely detest Pepsi. And don’t even get me started on the evil aftertaste in Diet Sodas. So put them together as Pepsi Diet Soda and create a commercial and you get something I’d really, really hate. And in fact, the only redeeming thing about that commercial (well, I admit the CG is not bad for the dancing sodas) is that they used Blitzkrieg Bop by the Ramones as the background music.
The commercial features a bunch of sodas in a 7-11 upright glass door fridge cooler, each “type” of soda on a different shelf. They actually went out of their way to render “Diet Coke” cans too. So only the “cool” Diet Pepsi cans are the ones to pogo to the beat of Blitzkrieg Bop, while the other sodas are complaining. I dunno, I might be complaining too about neighbors in the upstairs shelf making a racket. The commercial ends with a lone Diet Pepsi can slam dancing through the glass door and spinning around on the floor.
Continue reading “Ramones – Diet Pepsi Commercial” …
Red House Painters
A few days ago, I was idly listening to the news on TV when I heard a song for a Target Commercial and looked up immediately. Again, I thought maybe someone left the CD player on because it was the intro Red House Painters song Cabezon from the album Ocean Beach.
Not only was I impressed because Ocean Beach is one of my favorite RHP albums, but it’s pretty cool that Target chose this song for two reasons. The first – it’s from one of their older albums (originally 1995, re-released in 1999?), and second – even though it is the first track on the album (so marketing probably was just demoing a bunch of different older indie albums to glean some tracks, and they got lucky because this perfect song for their commerical was the first one) it’s NOT a hit single. In fact it’s an instrumental, so the only way you might have known that was if you had the album (or cheated and visited their site).
Continue reading “Red House Painters – Target Commercial” …
I’m not exactly sure how we missed checking out Rocky Votolato seeing as how it’s plastered on the splash screen for Barsuk Records. But miss it we did; it was probably one of those “I’ll just check it out later” things that got misfiled. (I was reminded of him from a post on faves 3hive)
Anyhow, though his last name may be a bit of a typingtwister (I keep typing Voltotado), his music is contains some really fine and serene folk-based acoustic musings. From Barsuk’s Northwest backyard via Texas, Votolato’s latest release is Makers out on Barsuk this past January.
“White Daisy Passing” was the first song I heard, and there’s a good chance that you have as well seeing as it was featured in the television show The OC a little while ago. That show has got a serious case of indie-artist-itis… not that it’s a bad thing. For us at least.
Anyhow, “White Daisy” is a really pretty folk tune that has a feel similar to The Shins “New Slang” of all things. The songs have a poignant as well as lonesome feel to them like they were created in wide open spaces. I wonder how much of that has to do with his Texan roots.
The songs are more straightforward folk than the Appalachian tunes of Sam Beam and seem a bit more upbeat instead of overly mopy. He has a pretty strong voice as well, and does some beautiful harmonizing with his own vocal melodies. He includes harmonica in a couple tracks, though that doesn’t make an appearance on “White Daisy Passing”.
Hmm.. interestingly, I read that he used to be in an “emo” band before? I’ll let that slide. Some good songs to be had from him.
Albums available on Itunes:
Makers (2006 Barsuk)
Light and Sound EP (2003 Second Nature Recordings)
Suicide Medicine (2003 Second Nature Recordings)
Burning My Travels Clean (2001 Second Nature Recordings)
Rocky Votolato (1999 Status Recordings)
Rocky Votolato’s Webite:
Ok, a confession: I’m not quite there on the cutting edge of TV shows. Yep, hard to believe but true. Only recently, I “discovered” the show Heroes because they’ve released all the episodes up until now on the web as a free stream. I’ve quickly become addicted.
In the pilot episode for Heroes and I think in a few of the other episodes there was an absolutely great acoustic song playing in the background. I knew right away it was an indie band, but I just couldn’t place it – for some reason it reminded me of a tender and sweet early Sebadoh song. Or maybe a solo Ben Gibbard thingy. It turns out that it’s called “Eyes” by Rogue Wave. It you go back to watch the pilot, you’ll recognize it as the song where they keep singing “in your eyes…” over and over again.
I did a quick search on the web and it’s apparently been used previously in the soundtrack to the movie Just Friends. I was trying to figure out why I hadn’t heard the song before because I’ve got both Descended Like Vultures and Out Of The Shadow. It turns out it’s a B-side for “Publish My Love”.
Rogue Wave is one of those bands who just took an inordinate amount of time to grow on me. It wasn’t until I heard “Eyes” and simultaneously checked out their cover of The Pixies’ Debaser that I realized how much I actually liked the band. Better late than never, eh? The phrase “Slicin’ up Eyeballs” never sounded so mainstream…
Rogue Wave website
A few weeks ago I was absolutely flabbergasted while typing something on the computer to hear the opening words of a Stephen Malkmus song on the TV that was on in the background. “Wake up early in Karakatu, Alaska / We put our masks on to welcome the dawn” isn’t the sort of lyrics that the average commercial will contain so I looked up immediately to watch it.
It was a commercial for a 13 hour sale at Sears that was playing on ESPN2 of all places. I can’t believe that they would choose the second song “Phantasies” out of all of them from his older self-titled album. Way to go Sears. Since then, I’ve seen the commercial about 4 or 5 times on other stations like CBS and Food Network.
Continue reading “Stephen Malkmus – Sears Commercial” …
Target continues their run at trying to be the hippest purveyor of indie music in commercials. Their latest bid is a song from the L.A. band The 88, called “Coming Home”.
I’ve actually caught a few songs from the band under sadder circumstances – it was at the Elliott Smith Tribute at the Henry Fonda theatre. On that note, I believe this band quite frequently used to play as backup members for Elliott Smith when he played live. (There is a MP3 on their website from 2003 that features them backing Smith on “Can’t Make A Sound”.
Back to the commercial… I heard this played twice the other day. It’s a great indie pop track that harkens back to the 60s or 70s a la the Kinks, Beatles, T-Rex, Elton John, etc. A little bit on the campy side at times. You’ll recognize it from any of the following lines: “Won’t You Be Night To My Day”, “Won’t You Be Someone New”, “Won’t You Be Good To Yourself”, and “It’ll Be Like Coming Home”. I actually don’t remember too much about the commercial because I was just paying attention to the song, which is quite catchy. (I read elsewhere that the commercial features people in towels and a girl in a Target ball gown, but I don’t even remember that!)
Unfortunately, to my knowledge they are not yet featured in Itunes.This actually IS available from Itunes. You can also get the track off of their Myspace site (embedded in the Flash player, though), and they also have the album on Amazon.
The Album Leaf
Always For You
So Cadillac keeps throwing them at us. Earlier they’d served up both M. Ward and Luna as backing music for their commercials. This time around they pick the instrumental part of a great song by The Album Leaf. The song in question is “Always For You” and it’s the 2nd song off of their latest album “Into The Blue Again”.
Once again, I don’t remember too much about the actual commerical except that it was for the Cadillac Escalade. I always seem to get distracted when recognizing background music in commercials that’s from an indie band. I recognized it right away because I have both this album and their earlier one “In A Safe Place”. This one should be pretty good – since there are no words in the section (I wonder if it was a loop or a snippet?) of song being used, you’d probably have a harder time trying to google the lyrics…
Actually, if you liked the part of the song that was used in the commercial you’ll probably dig the rest of their stuff. They tend toward mostly instrumental mellow songs that are “electronic” in the sense that they use a lot of different sounds, but there is an amazing organic feel to the tracks.
They might come across very similar to Postal Service. Who, by the way, have gotten one of their songs used again recently in a UPS commercial. The EXACT SAME ONE in fact that was used for Kaiser Permanente (I don’t even remember the name), which calls for a rant: a word to UPS – stop trying to jump on the cool-indie-music-in-commercials bandwagon and find your own damn songs. That’s what you’re overpaying your music directors (or whatever it is they’re called nowadays) for. They could have picked any other Postal Service track or any other similar indie band, but NO… they were just too damn lazy. OK, rant off – have a nice day!
Always For You, by The Album Leaf
Car commercials have always been interesting in their choice of music whether older or newer. Got a bit of a blast from the past the other day while watching TV when they started playing a song from The Cardigans during a 2006 Nissan Altima commercial. It was pretty much your typical car commercial, but I guess the song fit in all right. They played a good chunk of the actual song straight through the entire commercial.
Continue reading “The Cardigans – Nissan Altima Commercial” …
You might have noticed that over the past few years, Target has hired some snazzy marketeers to help them update and modernize their image. It seems to have worked in some respect, not the least of which is the music. I’ve been trying for the longest time to figure out who did the music to one of their commercials. The music in question, made my “indie pop” alert go off right away… a strange combination of 60s reverbed girl band (Ronettes?), the Aislers Set, and Hope Sandoval.
The song on the commercial is “Say Something New” by a band from Sweden called The Concretes. Though they’re on a pretty big label (Astralwerks), I haven’t heard of them before. For some reason, I was thinking Concrete BLONDE for awhile which definitely isn’t the same thing!
Continue reading “The Concretes – Target Commercial” …
Fall Behind Me
I’d been hearing this one alt-rock girl song as background music for a commercial for the Nissan Xterra lately. I knew I’d actually heard this song elsewhere on radio but I just couldn’t place who it was, but I remembered who it was the other day. The song used in the commercial is called “Fall Behind Me” by the Bay-area punkette band turned MTV fave The Donnas.
This is off of their latest album Gold Medal and is a pretty catchy tune. The all-girl band has been kicking around for quite some time already, nearly a decade of playing pop-punk in smaller clubs before hitting it much bigger a few years ago. People have looked at them and their name and said, “Ok, so it’s the female version of The Ramones“. That’s not entirely true; I think The Donnas are much more poppy despite their punkier roots. They don’t seem anywhere near as loud or angsty as say, Sleater-Kinney.
A strange footnote: it’s weird but the visual that triggered the memory of who the Xterra Commercial song was by was seeing The Donnas on those VH-1 “I Love The 80′s” specials…
The Go! Team
So you heard a Honda Civic commercial the other day with a track that sounds sort of like your local high school cheerleading squad playing hiphop punk. You just heard The Go! Team doing “Huddle Formation” off of their Thunder, Lightning, Strike album. They slam through a crazy mishmash of resampled beats mixed in with live sounding cheerleading-like chants and guitar. Really weird instrumentation all over the place.
This is another one I’d been meaning to post forever. I usually just leave a little note to myself as a blog draft when these indie music commercials come up. But I usually forget about it, sometimes for months at a time. I vaguly remember the commercial itself was sort of similar to the Grandaddy commercial with stop motion married to film, flying paper airplanes, etc.
Although I’ve forgotten completely how the commercial went since last seeing it, one thing I do remember is actually hearing the same song being used for some sort of promo on one of the major networks, just a little while ago. So I guess The Go! Team is getting around. Now if only they would drop that pesky exclamation point that my Shift-Key impaired fingers stumble over every time I type their name…
What I Say And What I Mean
We were watching TV the other day and a Converse Commercial came on with a punky sort of backing music track. In the commercial, a girl gets dropped off by a car at private school and then runs up the steps and into the bathroom where she proceeds to secretly change her look (including her hair, tie, makeup and most noticeably her argyle socks).
I’ve got indie radar for music in commercials so I immediately knew this was an indie band, and probably one whose CD I’ve got. We thought it might have been Giant Drag right away and a little searching proved we were on the right track. The band is the fairly well known punkyteen trio The Like, who have played with Giant Drag before.
Continue reading “The Like – Converse Commercial” …
Let Me Take Your Photo
One of the companies that have really stepped up to the plate with cool music in their commercials is Hewlett Packard. Even without the addition of interesting music, their commercials would still be really cool… featuring Michel Gondry-like shots of photos or video being moved around and becoming one with parts of the actual commercial shot. It is pretty hypnotizing to watch.
I still am trying to figure out this one commercial of theirs that has music that sort of sounds like the Apples In Stereo (no it’s not the Kinks track). But I finally DID figure out a newer commercial that features a woman repeatedly being dressed up in various clothes and handed a photo which becomes the backdrop for the next shot. The song in question is a pretty fast sounding punk song with these snare drum rolls that really move it along.
Continue reading “The Speedies – HP Commercial” …
Oopsydaisy. I’d earlier posted about Tobias Fröberg who was a great find while doing SXSW previews. Turns out I didn’t realize he that his music was also used for a Panasonic Lumix Commercial. The song used is called “When The NightTurns Cold”
In case you’re new here, I’m big on discovering when companies use the lesser known (or famous) indie bands and artists in their commercials. I try to post about them whenever possible – interesting, but more than once this has solved a mystery for more than one person looking for who wrote the music in a commercial! Neat.
You can watch the actual commercial here, and the link to the track on Itunes is below.
Man, I was sitting in the waiting room watching the dreary teevee at the orthopedist the other day when I heard the music for a commercial for Weinerschnitzel – and I just couldn’t believe it. I mean, a surprising number of indie bands have showed up in commercials – what with music sales going kaput, I say more power to them if they can make a few bucks without completely selling out (hint: hey bands, stop giving the evil corporations your most popular tracks – I mean YOU Peter, Bjorn and John).
But anyhow, Tullycraft was the last band I thought I’d hear in a commercial – let alone a big fast food player like Weinerschnitzel. But yep, there was the track called “Sweet” from Tullycraft’s Old Traditions, New Standards being played as background music for hot doggian shenanigans. It’s the one where the lyrics keep going “Cause you’re sweet, you’re so incredibly sweet.”
I’ve got nothing against the twee-popsters giving up their music for a commercial – they deserve it. I’m just surprised (sorta pleasantly) that the agency behind it was willing to use their music – I mean c’mon if you know Tullycraft, they’re not exactly showcasing their perfect in-tune vocals. They’re positively lo-fi by many standards. But I love ‘em anyhow. Just surprised that an agency would feel the same.
Interestingly, immediately after this commercial I was treated to a 90s flashback – I heard Elastica being used for a Saturn (?) commercial. That was a bizarre feeling – to have two alt bands in a row on TV commercials. Man, at this rate I’m going to try write some songs myself with commercials jingles in mind… since there’s certainly no money to be made by actually selling CDs (grumble, grumble).