Episode 125: Norm Overload

Ryan and special guest “Cognac” listen to and discuss Talking Heads’ “More Songs about Buildings and Food.”

Ryan and special guest Cognac (@likecognac) listen to and discuss Talking Heads’s More Songs about Buildings and Food.


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6 Comments on “Episode 125: Norm Overload”

  1. Josie M. #

    The thing that keeps occurring to me over this particular historical run is that there seem to me to be direct connections, stylistic and thematic, between the bands covered and indie bands of the last 15 years. And they’re often not the obvious ones. For instance, this episode convinced me that the real heir to Talking Heads is not the Arcade Fire or LCD Soundsystem, but the Omaha, NE band The Faint – associates of previous TFT subject Bright Eyes. Their shtick has largely been commenting on 21st century sexual and social dynamics with dry, aloof distance over “dance-punk” and synthpop, in a way very similar to how you describe this album.

    And I forgot to mention this before, but I actually have a personal connection to the whole late 70s CBGB/Bowery scene – in that my father, then an NYU student, was there and saw all of these bands. I grew up with stories of him seeing the Talking Heads and Blondie and Patti Smith especially.


    • sheely OTI Staff #

      Very interesting point regarding the Faint. I never got super into them, but I definitely gave Danse Macabre more than a few spins. Another Omaha band that I see as being in a similar space is Beep Beep (I think they shared at least one member with the Faint). Their first album, Business Casual is definitely worth checking out.

      And thanks for sharing your personal connection with that scene. I’m tremendously jealous (both of your father getting to see those shows and of you for getting to grow up with the stories of those shows).


  2. Chris Morgan #

    I’ll tell you what I do whilst I listen to podcasts, or at least to this episode. I read the @everypunk Twitter page and then read 50 Bazooka Joe fortunes chronicled on Caltech’s website.

    I don’t have much else to say, as somebody who kind of likes Talking Heads but doesn’t necessarily have any strong feelings and kind of finds David Byrne not really interesting. Also, normcore is dumb. I mean as a concept of an idea, but I find most poorly defined, generally nonsensical stuff like that very tedious. And by “most,” I mean all. But I generally don’t like people by and large, so perhaps my opinion is not necessarily terribly pertinent, because it is almost always going to end up falling on the side of disdain.


    • sheely OTI Staff #

      I agree with your assessment of normcore as dumb, with the difference being that I love nonsensical stuff like that and I also tend to love people/humanity. Hence why I love talking about normcore, even though there is definitely tons to hate about it.


  3. EA #

    My job at a library gives me a lot of time to listen to music and podcasts, so I’m mostly handling journals and pushing carts while listening to the TFT podcast. Luckily it’s not a public library, so I don’t have to worry about occasionally cracking up in the stacks.


    • sheely OTI Staff #

      Matt and I already recorded next week’s episode, which is about Elvis Costello’s This Year’s Model. The title (and latter 1/3 of the discussion) is rather relevant to your job… looking forward to hearing your thoughts on it once you listen to it!


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