Apache Plaza

January 27, 2008 2:09 PM

Ode to a doomed shopping mall.

I grew up in Minneapolis just a few blocks from one of the first enclosed shopping malls in the world. It was state-of-the-art at the time it was built (1961), a mid-century modern building curiously named Apache Plaza. When I was twelve, a tornado hit the mall and ripped part of the roof off. I vividly remember the surreal sight of department store products (teddy bears, golf clubs, skirts, etc.) strewn on people's lawns throughout the neighborhood. They rebuilt, but the mall never completely recovered. By 2003, when it was bulldozed, all but the most stubborn businesses had jumped ship, and it became an bleak, echoey post-apocalyptic scene, with solemn mall-walkers taking over the corridors.

I wrote this song over a decade ago, but dusted it off and recorded it after seeing the generic new urbanist crypto-mall that was put in its place. It ended up falling into a Penny Lane-ish nostalgic mood. I trying to create faux muzak in certain sections, and pictured the vocals delivered by guys dressed like a barbershop quartet standing in the main atrium next to the Galaxian machine.

posted by umbú (7 comments total) 4 users marked this as a favorite

Oops. I meant 'I tried to...'
posted by umbú at 2:10 PM on January 27, 2008

Cool stuff umbú, it does remind me of Penny Lane, or maybe something off of Smile.
posted by doctor_negative at 4:40 PM on January 27, 2008

This is great! I was envisioning Dawn of the Dead at the beginning and during the instrumental break. After finishing it, I think it should still be in the movie somewhere.
posted by sleepy pete at 8:13 PM on January 27, 2008

Pretty cool! Any song that can fit "numerous corporate ventures" into its chorus is aces by me.

Nice "muzak" sections -- very Jon Brion-esque.
posted by Karlos the Jackal at 4:30 AM on January 28, 2008

This is a ton of fun; I dig it. I like the little guitar turnaround especially.
posted by uncleozzy at 8:48 AM on January 28, 2008

Nice vocal harmonies! And melodies. The reverb is a distracting for me, but it's a good listen, nevertheless.
posted by ignignokt at 11:34 PM on January 29, 2008

I love this. Thanks!
posted by thepressdelete at 9:11 PM on January 31, 2008

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