The Maccabees. Are they Jewish? Are they not Jewish? Who knows, and really, who cares (they aren’t)? Today, I saw this Jewish magazine over at a friends house called Jvibe and there was a music section that included, “Best Jewish Singer/Group You Wish Would Refer to Being Jewish”. The nominees in the magazine are Joe Trohman (of Fall Out Boy), Adam Levine (of Maroon 5), The Beastie Boys, and Amy Winehouse. If the Maccabees were Jewish, they would certainly top the list of “Best Jewish Singer/Group who Refer to Being Jewish”. Even though they are not Jewish. That’s all I have to say on that matter. And that I think it’s silly to expect musicians, or anyone for that matter, to publicly discuss their religion, unless they are Yusuf Islam. But that’s for another day. Now to the important stuff.
The Maccabees have a similar sound to Clap Your Hands and Say Yeah, Wolf Parade, and Dogs Die In Hot Cars. Some songs are better than others, but I think the band is worth your listen, as they do have some catchy hooks. Their music is more on the indie rock side and is probably as indie rock as I get. My favorite song of theirs is “Toothpaste Kisses” which is on their debut, Colour It In. I must say that while “Toothpaste Kisses” is a good song, and the most mellow song on the album, I can’t help thinking of Dylan’s “Lay, Lady, Lay.” Does anyone else hear the similarities? I mean, listen to the lyrics. “Lay with me, I’ll lay with you, we’ll do the things lovers do.”
The Maccabees are from Brighton via South London, UK, and band members include Orland Weeks (vocals), Hugh White (guitar), Rubert Jarvis (bass), and Robert Dylan Thomas. You don’t have to read far into the biography on their website to see the sarcastic British humor I love so much.
They were ambitious from the start. Shortly after Felix joined, they entered a Battle Of The Bands competition. They lost to a girl group called Red, who played covers, had massive afros and wore miniskirts. The Maccabees had already planned how to spend the money when they won â€“ new amps and a demo. When they didnâ€™t, they were so devastated they didnâ€™t even collect their second prize â€“ tickets to a beer festival.
Fun fact: They chose the name by flicking through books. The biggest in the house was The Bible. They came across the story of The Maccabees, Jewish rebels who fought against Greek rule and established Jewish independence in the second century BC. As soon as they saw they name, they knew that was it. But itâ€™s only a name. Theyâ€™re not a religious band.
Colour It In (2007):
The Maccabees- Toothpaste Kisses
The Maccabees – First Love
The Maccabees – Good Old Bill
Bonus (what do you think?):
Bob Dylan – Lay Lady Lay
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Funny, but weird “Toothpaste Kisses” music video. Very weird. Disturbing, actually.
P.S. HAPPY HOLIDAYS!