Bud Collins Trio – “Television Personalities” – Single Review
I have absolutely no idea what I was expecting here…but this is awesome.
Like, what a perfect crossbreeding of exactly what I needed! I was looking for a gentle melody that would soothe my soul a bit, but I still wanted something that massively highlights the failings in our humanity at the same time – and wouldn’t you know it, “Television Personalities” popped on to my playlist like an audible gift from above with all the exact specifications of what I was seeking out.
Floating along a dreamlike atmosphere, spreading out beautifully with delicate synth sounds and a steady but strong beat, the vocals play a massive role in just how captivating this song becomes. As far as I can read on the history of the Bud Collins Trio and their musical-intentions, it’s fairly safe to say this is purposely designed to be as tripped-out as it sounds…and I don’t know about you all out there but my ears in here are completely loving this tune. The recording on the drums alone would have done it for me – just so happens there’s a hell of a lot more in play here. From the hazy vocals slipping & slurring around in a melodic fog, to the lyrics perfectly detailing the grimness of reality and the daily grind, to the brilliantly understated music that guides this song along, “Television Personalities” truly delivers on all fronts. As wild as like…The Flaming Lips…but like, you know, controlled and focused somehow.
It’s a completely surreal experience to listen to this song – which, in my best estimation, is exactly the intentions behind what’s happening on “Television Personalities” – the entire way this song so gently sways like that final moment before you sleep or the first moment of your day before you even realize where you woke up…it all adds so much to what is essentially a song that highlights just how ridiculous we are as a society. The result is a song that glides along amongst the clouds…a song that looks down upon us all and boldly observes just how odd and strange we really are in our daily routines. How dreaming of celebrities and shiny things is like our own form of self-administered Xanax, how our lives can be so mundane in contrast to the shimmering gloss applied to every inch of our idols and the fantastic, unimaginably awesome lives they lead, and perhaps how we have let our routines become our prison. I mean, I could be completely way off here…maybe none of this is real…maybe it is…if I am even half correct on any of these theories, it’s definitely without a doubt one of the most brilliantly focused & clever cuts I’ve heard this year, executing in-full on important insight & concepts about who we are and what makes us. If I’m wrong…well…shit…then there’s a whole bunch of self-projection in this review that I should probably backspace and delete before Mark Zuckerberg makes another nickel off of me.
The imagery in the words and attention to detail between the lyrics & music tells me that I’m likely not far off the mark. One of my favorite lines in the song, comes right at the end of the lyrics…where the Bud Collins Trio sums-up the entire human-experience in a single poignant observation – ‘all of this is science fiction.’ Which is exactly what life seems to become the more you live it. Like John Lennon infamously once observed himself; “The more real you get, the more unreal the world gets” – which could be like, the tagline on the poster of “Television Personalities” if it was to have one. The descriptions and imagery found in the lyrics of this song are heartbreakingly accurate…and without the contrasting lighter-style of music, there’s no doubt that these words would end up sounding completely different & too soul-crushing as opposed to the way they do here in how the Bud Collins Trio has chosen to approach this. I think the contrast between those two elements is certainly where the magic in this song reveals itself most…by not making it too heavy to become depressing, the music is instead light & airy, almost blissfully unaware of the reality being presented through the words that run through it.
The parallels between the music and the human-experience run so deep on this track I could spend entire days getting further into this. What sounds so remarkably inoffensive at first goes right for the jugular when it comes to making its ultimate points, sparing us all no quarter as a society…yet there’s not a single solitary second of this song that isn’t incredibly inviting & welcoming to listen to. Just goes to show you what a lemming even I can be…I got sucked right into this dreamy atmosphere and went right down the rabbit hole in every direction they wanted me to fall.
I’d happily take that trip again any time – “Television Personalities” is absolutely genius – Bud Collins Trio have made my wheels spin so hard my hamsters are working overtime just to keep up with my thoughts. Loved every second of this song…it’s light-years beyond us all, but even with what little I can comprehend in the right here & now, it’s going to be put on repeat daily – this completely hits the mark.
“Television Personalities” comes from their recent release, the No 5uch Th1ng EP – find out more about Bud Collins Trio at their official Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/BudCollinsTrio/