One of my favorite bands of all time is The Eels. If you listen to pop radio, you may have heard a song or two of theirs a decade or so ago. As is often the case, the best songs don’t make it onto the radio. The Eels are the brainchild of Mark Oliver Everett, the son of a notable physicist. The subject matter typically explores common depressing topics such as mental illness, unrequited love, and nihilism, but does so with a dose of originality and creativity often lacking from self-absorbed musicians. If you’ve heard one, it’s probably Novocain for the Soul, which was sort of their breakout song:

Our next too songs involve living in a degree of financial despair. Flyswatter brings forth images of decrepid apartments with an eye towards resigning oneself to material failure. The video itself is primarily a parade of storylines and visually appealing images without much basis in the song itself. Rags to Rags, which is the second video below, is much more obvious in its underpinnings with a take on America’s Funniest Home Videos with a little bit of Jackass sprinkled on top.

Hey Man, below, is one of Everett’s more optimistic tunes. The video itself is reminiscent of the sorts of music videos my brothers and I would make when we were in intermediate and elementary school. E explains at the outset that they simply ran out of money for music videos so they had to do it on the cheap. It’s a real shame, because this song lends itself to some interesting music video concepts.

If you’ve heard more than one of E’s songs, Mr E’s Beautiful Blues is probably another you’ve heard, though you like me may have thought it was called “God Damn Right (It’s a Beautiful Day)”. Below is a fan-made video for that song.

Category: Theater

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