Jonathan Coulton :: "Nemeses" [Feat. John Roderick]

Jonathan Coulton is a joker. This part is known; his back catalogue looks like a series of ideas that Al Yankovic discarded for being too high brow. However, on his new record, Artificial Heart, produced by They Might Be Giants' John Flansburgh, Coulton heads in a direction to coalesce these broad, quirky ideas into a beautiful slice of pop. Lead single, "Nemeses", the kind of thing that would have dominated college radio in 1993, or easily could have appeared on a Lemonheads record in that same year. Here, Coulton digs John Roderick of the Long Winters on backing vocals, a sound that will remind fans of how long Roderick has been gone. He's well-used on "Nemeses", a bit of throwback pop about how much we need our rivals. It's a love song to the upwardly mobile middle manager who is looking to beat you out for Vice President of fill-in-the-blank. You could say Coulton is kidding, but listen to the bridge, the obvious boy-needs-girl language turned into man-hates-man. Unrequited love spun on its head. This is a weird, pretty, love song for someone you should otherwise despise, as delicate and serious a concept as pop can handle.

Listen :: Jonathan Coulton - "Nemeses"

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