My Top 1000 Songs #630: Dominoes In Drag

[I've been writing up my Top 1000 songs on a daily basis--you can see them all in descending order by hitting the All My Favorite Songs tag.]

As with any of the more recent songs on the list, it's hard to predict whether this one'll still be a personal fave 10, 20 years from now. Still, the sheer thrill of discovering a new band is rare for me these days, and you just can't discount the personal impact of stumbling across something that really makes you sit up and take notice.

I came across Elizabeth Nelson 5 years ago (just as I was starting up this blog and finalizing my book) through her online presence , an active Twitter feed and music journalism and other assorted publications, all displaying a keen wit, encyclopedic knowledge of... well, everything, though mostly music..., and a stunning way with prose. So I was pretty psyched to also discover, hey, she's got a band! I quickly gobbled up the Paranoid Style's then-slim catalog (filled out with several terrific albums since). The songs, like her writings, are filled with sly observations and a sense of history that have you running for Wikipedia, the sort of things that make you long for the days of vinyl stuffed with multi-page lyric sheets; and her band is no slouch, a capable, versatile indie act that, in the tradition of the E-Street Band and the Heartbreakers and the Hold Steady serve up a solid punch without overshadowing a charismatic frontperson.

For whatever reason, I gravitated quickly towards "Dominoes In Drag," a rollicking piano-driven glam-adjacent barrelhouse stomp on 2017's Underworld USA EP, which kicks off with the "Ballroom Blitz" drum shuffle before Nelson lets loose a barrage of lyrics that, frankly, are way over my head yet still a delight, a vague sense of a woman on the prowl with subtle references to Van Morrison & Lou Reed, delivered in her knowing deadpan. It's a quick couple minutes of indie fun, the sort of thing you hear once and think, yeah, I like this band a lot, hope they stick around...