Mocker Bracket Madness: Round One, Part Two

Hello Loyal Mockers and welcome to Part Two of The Mocker Rock’n’Roll Bracket Challenge! The first round continues on both the basketball court and thru the Pioneer speakers in my living room…

FIRST ROUND-MADEA BRACKET…Hurray For The Riff Raff, “The Navigator” (12 songs) vs. Dams of the West, “Youngish American” (10 songs)…

PREVIEW: The Riff Raff album has really made a strong impression in its training sessions while the Vampire Weekend spin-off Dams of the West has not…first round mis-match or first round mis-calculation? Let’s find out!

THE GAMES: 1) Xavier is taking on Maryland in a game between two crap teams but it’s a one point affair at halftime… 2) Shocking halftime score in Buffalo as the top seeded and defending champion Villanova Wildcats are only leading by one over Mount St. Mary’s–I predict they end up winning by twenty so upset alert remains low 3) Vermont is giving Big Ten Champ Purdue a tussle as they only trail by two with under five minutes left in the first half…upset alert: medium to mild 4) Saint Mary’s and its gaggle of Australians lead VCU by seven

30 Minutes Left: Hurray for the Riff Raff (Settle)…Hard to pin down the sound for this eclectic release from Alynda Seguera, a Puerto Rican via Brooklyn but I know I enjoy it very much and this easy going tune scores an early two points…

26 Minutes Left: Hurray for the Riff Raff (Nothing’s Gonna Change That Girl)…Instantly accessible sing-a-long, going to have to pause this for a bit as the Pretty Lady’s Uncle Dave is stopping over…ok, back to the contest…this was a swish from long range and the riff-raff are off and running…

23 Minutes Left: Hurray for the Riff Raff (Living in the City)…I guess this is a concept album loosely based on Seguera’s life and alter ego…another instantly accessible tune with a kick ass chorus that even has the pretty lady singing along…another three pointer and Dams of the West might have already packed it in…Riff Raff 8 Dams 0

19 Minutes Left: Hurray for the Riff Raff (Fourteen Floors)…A slower number with some piano keys tinkling…reminds me of Feist…two more points

16 Minutes Left: Dams of the West (Polo Grounds)…We finally hear from the Vampire Weekend drummer and Brooklyn Nets fan…the Mets played their first home game at the Polo Grounds in 1962, which is where the Giants used to play…this album is alright but it seems slightly over produced in probably an effort to hide the dude’s ineffectual vocals…just enough melody in the chorus for two points…Riff Raff 10 Dams 2

11 Minutes Left: Dams of the West (Pretty Good WiFi)…Man, this song is just not good, I’ll have no recollection of it…zero points

8 Minutes Left: Dams of the West (The Inerrancy of You and Me)…The Inerrancy of completely forgettable indie pop…this one actually had a bit more bounce so I’ll give it two points…Riff Raff 10 Dams 5

5 Minutes Left: Dams of the West (Flag on the Can)…Riff Raff apparently feeling she has done enough, that may work out this round but she better not make that a trend as the competition will only get tougher…this album is actually getting better with each song and Dams score two more…

1 Minute Left: Hurray for the Riff Raff (Entrance)…”One for the navigator, oh my lord”…this album opener combines doo-wop, gospel and a general sense of anticipation on what is to come…two more points puts this one out of reach…

FINAL SCORE: Hurray for the Riff Raff 12 Dams of the West 6…This is no ordinary riff-raff I’m talking about as it was quite an impressive performance for this dynamic latina dynamo

GAME UPDATE: 1) Xavier rides a strong second half to defeat higher seeded Maryland and I’m pretty sure they used some mind control to pull out the victory 2) Villanova ends up winning by…twenty! 3) Purdue was on upset alert for the majority of the game but were able to thwart the Vermont Catamounts 4) Saint Mary’s rolled with an all white dude line-up and somehow survived an intense rally from VCU to advance

FIRST ROUND-MADEA BRACKET…Stephen Pearcy, “Smashed” (13 songs) vs. Strand of Oaks, “Hard Love” (9 songs)

PREVIEW: Added Pearcy, the former and perhaps current lead singer of Ratt, to The Bracket in honor of my partner in podding, Eric Mocker, a man who has introduced me to many washed up glam rockers over the years…Strand of Oaks were discussed on a recent podcast and while rumor has it they haven’t trained very hard for what they feel is an easy first round match-up…

30 Minutes Left: Stephen Pearcy (Rain)…Oh yeah, this is the cheese I was hoping for from this record as I can easily see Eric and I singing along to this during a garage talk…easy jumper from elbow and Pearcy is up by two…

26 Minutes Left: Strand of Oaks (Taking Acid and Talking to My Brother)…Eight minute long album ending opus that will only garner them a point at most…see, this is what happens when you think you can just coast into the second round…a point it is and Pearcy leads by one…

THE GAMES: 1) It’s a Sunshine State battle as Florida State leads Florida Gulf Coast by four at halftime, I would expect this game to turn into a blowout 2) Wisconsin leads Virginia Tech and their heavily sweating coach Buzz Peterson at halftime 3) Iowa State has been playing well late in the year and they are leading Nevada in the first half 4) North Dakota is trying to salvage Dakota pride after South Dakota State’s earlier loss but it will be tough against perennial power Arizona

17 Minutes Left: Stephen Pearcy (Hit Me With a Bullet)…”I’m a machine gun power pack”–how has that lyric never been sung before? Absolutely unreal how good/bad this song is…and it’s locked and loaded from deep…Pearcy with a three pointer!

14 Minutes Left: Strand of Oaks (Everything)…Solid offering featuring an army of chugging, reverbing guitars…close to a three pointer but it looks like Showalter’s foot was on the line…Pearcy 5 Oaks 3

10 Minutes Left: Stephen Pearcy (Want Too Much)…”You want too much…enough ain’t enough for you”…a little more 2000’s rock in the guitars on this track and it’s good for only a foul shot…

7 Minutes Left: Strand of Oaks (Quit It)…Oaks got the memo that this is a damn fight and are starting to turn their set around…two more points and the next possession is key…Pearcy 6 Oaks 5

3 Minutes Left: Strand of Oaks (Cry)…Wow, terrible time of possession late in the game for Pearcy…but an even worse selection by the Strand of Oaks as they play a terribly slow number that ends with a minute of dissonant noise and a creepy telephone convo that makes you think the lead singer is a perv…sometimes you brick the last shot and that is the case here, no points awarded!

FINAL SCORE: Stephen Pearcy 6 Strand of Oaks 5…I have to say, I saw this upset coming but this has to be a tough pill for the Oaks to swallow, they join Sallie Ford in the choke garage…

GAME UPDATE: Only game that is really close right now is Virginia Tech/Wisconsin, which is really fucking boring…hoping Nevada will put on a run…oh wait, Florida Gulf Coast Island International is hanging around and only trail Florida State by seven with 11:30 left…

FIRST ROUND-BOEHEIM BRACKET…Hand Habits, “Wildly Idle (Humble Before The Void)” (13 songs) vs. The Shins, “Heartworms” (11 songs)

PREVIEW: I’ve only listened to the new Shins record a couple times but it’s the clear favorite over lo-fi singer/songwriter Meg Duffy (despite her Upstate New York upbringing-thanks Wikipedia for that info morsel)…also interesting to note that both bands are named after body parts…

30 Minutes Left: Hand Habits (Nite Life)…Insistent acoustic riff that runs throughout the song reminds me a bit of Neil Young and there is just enough melody to merit a two point shot…

25 Minutes Left: Hand Habits (Sun Beholds Me)…The power of repeat listens serves this song well as Hand Habits are really grabbing this battle by the balls with both, well, hands…two more points and a lot of stage possession as this song clocked in at over six minutes…

19 Minutes Left: Hand Habits (In Between)…Oh boy, this might be getting out of hand…only worth a point but still a commanding lead nearing halftime…

14 Minutes Left: Hand Habits (Actress)…Wow, I know James Mercer of The Shins has a history of being a prick so maybe he is just pissing on our little bracket but he might have no choice in playing as I might be invoking The Sadies Proviso…”It’s hard to tell a secret when you know that its a lie”…two more points, eh, I’m knocking it down to one point for meandering–she is like a soccer player time wasting with these song lengths…yellow card has been issued and point has been revoked…

8 Minutes Left: The Shins (Name For You)…Bouncy, shimmery and immaculately produced indie pop…two points on the board but is there enough time?

5 Minutes Left: Hand Habits (Cowboy (Scene)…There are three or four of these ‘scenes’, which are all minute throwaway soundscapes so yet more time wasting by Meg…zero points awarded…

4 Minutes Left: The Shins (The Fear)…Oh man, a three pointer would have miraculously tied this up but we get a strange, string laden manifesto of existential ennui…a rare case of the music being way ahead of the lyrics/melody in a Shins song…only giving this two points…

FINAL SCORE: Hand Habits 5 The Shins 4…Great game plan by Hand Habits and she executed it to perfection to pull off one of the biggest upsets of day one!

No upsets and no real close games ending the night so I’ll sign off for now…thanks for reading and hit us up @MockersPodcast if you have a favorite in the Mocker Music Bracket!

 

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