Category: Cake

Cake – Fashion Nugget

ARTIST: Cake                                      220px-Cake_Fashion_Nugget

TITLE: Fashion Nugget

YEAR RELEASED: 1996

CHART ACTION: #36 US, #1 Heatseekers, #53 UK

SINGLES: The Distance (#4 Alternative, #38 Mainstream, #22 UK), I Will Survive (#28 Alternative, #29 UK), Frank Sinatra, Friend Is a Four Letter Word

OTHER SONGS YOU MAY KNOW: None I bet

LINEUP: John McCrea, Greg Brown, Vince DiFiore, Victor Damiani, Todd Roper

WHAT’S IT ALL ABOUT: Clever alt-rock band gets a decent-sized radio hit that has outlasted the band and album.

SOME WORDS, PHRASES AND CLAUSES ABOUT THIS RECORD: Alt rock, with a little mariachi, and a lot of smarmy sass, Cake’s second album became a sensation on the alternative scene thanks to “The Distance” – one of the few original songs not written or co-written by John McCrea. Funny how that works!

“The Distance” has outlived the band, being used for all kinds of media since its release. That overwhelms the band and the album a bit, and there’s enough other material that’s decent enough that it’s not a hit-plus-filler situation, though just a few tracks reach the level of “The Distance.”

The covers seem a bit forced, though. I don’t enjoy this as much as their debut. I think their schtick is easy to figure out, to be honest.

NOTES & MINUTIAE: They change the lyrics to “I Will Survive” and it gained a Parental Advisory sticker.

IS THERE A DELUXE VERSION: No 

GRADE: B: It’ll take you back to 1996, and that’s both good, and bad.

Cake – Motorcade of Generosity

ARTIST: Cake                             220px-Cake_Motorcade_of_Generosity

TITLE:  Motorcade of Generosity

YEAR RELEASED: 1994

CHART ACTION: None

SINGLES: Rock ‘N’ Roll Lifestyle (#31 Alternative), Jolene, Ruby Sees All

OTHER SONGS YOU MAY KNOW: No

LINEUP: John McCrea, Greg Brown, Vince DiFore, Victor Damiani, Todd Roper. Frank French and Gabriel Nelson were the drummer and bassist on four tracks.

WHAT’S IT ALL ABOUT: Cake’s first album features quirky songs, sarcasm, the trumpet, and a kitchen sink of stuff and things. It was already Cake.

SOME WORDS, PHRASES AND CLAUSES ABOUT THIS RECORD: Some bands take a while to sound ‘like themselves’. This leads to the first album or two being a little different than the familiar. Cake, not so much.

The vocals and lyrics of John McCrea are already a little sarcastic, world weary and pointedly humorous. The addition of the trumpet of Vince DiFiore adds a little mariachi touch. They also had a alternative radio ready song “Rock ‘N’ Roll Lifestyle”.

There’s nothing here that will alarm you if you know Cake, and if you don’t, just take a spin around a few tracks. The singles above are a good start.

NOTES & MINUTIAE: French and Nelson left when they were signed on a major label as they didn’t want to tour nationally.

IS THERE A DELUXE VERSION: No.

GRADE: B+: Cake were always kind of humorous, and their variety of sounds means that you don’t get bored through the album.