Today’s Ad Music Rip-off: The Unicorns v. MSG Varsity

By Bob Marshall 

Here we go again with another ad rip-off: music edition. The ever-vigilant folks at indie music website Stereogum tipped us off about this one, and it goes a little something like this:

Back in the early 2000s, Montreal-based band the Unicorns broke onto the indie music scene with an ear for catchy pop and a love of spazzy experimentation. After one well-received full length album, the Unicorns moved onto, uh, greener pastures in 2004. Two-thirds of the band started up another project called Islands, and they’ve been staples in the indie music scene ever since.

MSG Varsity, on the other hand, is a high-school sports station that covers events in New York, Connecticut and New Jersey. A Cablevision property, it sounds pretty boring unless your kid plays sports. If you’re watching it for any other reason, well, shame on you. ESPN is there for a reason. The above spot features a fun little pop ditty that sounds pretty much exactly like the Unicorns’ jam, “I Was Born a Unicorn” (below). Hopefully current Islands frontman Nick Diamonds will beat in some heads after this blatant rip-off. Those royalties couldn’t have been too expensive, right?