Sounds Like… # 1 in a very occasional series (when I can be bothered)

Ok so I’m something of a trainspotter when it comes to music I like. Perhaps not as anoraky at some who can tell you that the guitar fades out 2 seconds earlier on one version of a song on which the drum also pan slightly differently during the fill at the end of the middle eight, but pretty nerdy nevertheless. I don’t see any shame in this, and sometimes my ability to retain large quantities of apparently useless information can come in handy. I’m not too shabby in the music round of pub quizzes, for example.

Anyway, while I accept that certain chord sequences are common simply because they are (how many songs can you think of that use the same three chord descending sequence that’s the main riff on the Stooges track ‘I Wanna Be Your Dog’ for example?), some songs bear more than a passing resemblance to others that came before, and it’s unlikely to be entirely coincidental.

Try playing ‘Mrs Jones’ from the first Hole album alongside Bauhaus’ ‘Dark Entries’ and tell me honestly you don’t think the former appropriates in any way from the latter.

Anyway, one soundalike that’s long gnawed at me is the bassline to ‘Blah, Blah, Blah’ by Hüsker Dü, which is to all intents and purposes identical to that of ‘The Damage Done’ by The Sisters of Mercy. The Sisters single was released in 1980, two years before Mr Mould and co. recorded the tracks for ‘Everything Falls Apart,’ which was released January ‘83. Obviously, I’m not about to go on a big rant about plagiarism or anything, I’m just putting the observation regarding their similarity out there…


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