Sometimes you just fall in love with a band. I don’t mean a band comes along and are so great that they are immediately elevated to the level of favorite. I mean genuine, unexplainable head over heels affection that is roughly akin to that first swelling of puppy love when that cute guy or girl made eye contact across the crowded middle school classroom. It’s not love that’s meaningful or long-lasting, nor is grounded in a instinctual need for lifelong commitment. But it also helps define every similar swelling of the heart that follows. From the moment I first heard “Pull Shapes,” I was in love with the Pipettes.
I’m well aware that my stern indie cred meter is supposed to rebel against the Pipettes because they’re not a band that grew up organically but are instead a fairly fabricated product dreamed up by a musician and deejay who thought the time was right for a new girl group. I don’t care if it’s all affectation, the pop songs on their debut, We Are the Pipettes, are blissfully perfect, none more than “Pull Shapes.” If you can resist a song with the lyrics “I like to disco/ I like to rock n’ roll/ Well I like to hip-hop/ We can do it all, just don’t let the music stop,” then you’re a strong soul than me. But more to the point, why would you want to resist it?
For a while, I collected every stray Pipettes song I could get my right-click on. An acoustic version performed on NPR as part of their short-lived Bryant Park Project radio show? Yes, please. Even if the Pipettes are long gone (there’s a second album under that name, but it’s so different it shouldn’t really count), I can still turn to a song like this to give my heart a stir.
One for Friday –> “Pull Shapes” (Live on NPR)
(Disclaimer: I’m not sure if We Are the Pipettes is still available as a physical object that can procured from your favorite local, independently-owned record store, but it’s certainly out there digitally. That’s how I first bought it, unwilling to wait for a CD copy to be released on this side of the pond. And I don’t think this particular recording was ever released for purchase, so sharing it here seems like fair game to me. I will still gladly and promptly remove it if asked to do so by any individual or entity with due authority to make such a request. Especially if it’s Rose. I have a whole other set of complicated, akin to puppy love feelings about Rose.)