The second design with the blue is the best of the two designs.
My web site can be view here
The background is rather nice, but it's brighter colors distract from the other elements of the page. The dark-grey menu bars look out of place with bursty color and orange on either side. Default blue links give a bad impression. Black text on grey background seems a bit difficult to read, but that may be where I am sitting.
The background flashes when I scroll and it makes me want to scroll some more. The blue is somewhat pleasing. The image associated with the log-in area seems useless. the Twitter thingie should be aligned with something rather than just thrown in at the bottom.
Overall, the blue one is the better of the two. The person sitting next to me wondering why I was flipping back and forth between the two said, when I explained to them, "They took a semi-descent page and turned it into something that screams 90's."