So I’ve been a little lax this week.Â Truth be told, it’s been the week from hell and I really didn’t feel like venting via blog. It’s much easier to punch people in the face than spout invective about them online. That’s the power of action, people.Â Remember that.
So, here we are with the second installment of a weekly playlist. I’d like to say I spent the week pouring over my archives looking for wonderful music to share with you, laugh about, cry about, etc.. That just isn’t the truth.
In my fury of hatred-laced annoyance, I spent my week switching back and forth between the Jay-Z disc of my Presenting DJ Hero Renegade Edition double CD set and the Original Cast Recording of Wicked.Â No lie. Don’t judge.
Being that I’ve been on the verge of either depression or anxiety (maybe it’s just gas) all week, this little playlist should be a doozie. I think I even might just write a blurb with every song (even though I said I wasn’t going to do that) just because I fucking feel like it.
1. The Avett Brothers – The Perfect Space
Looks like I can’t start one of these without an Avett Brothers song. Despite the really really hokey middle part, this song really touches in a non-dirty way.
2. Red House Painters – Song for a Blue Guitar
Despite being on one of the happiest RHP albums released, this song, for some reason, breaks me up. I’ve seen this song played live eight times and have cried every time. If that’s not proof I’m not an android, I’m not sure what is.
3. Shallow – The Strangest Thing
This song reminds me of my old grad-school roommate. He introduced me to shallow when we were undergrads and I can always imagine him awkwardly bobbing and squeaking to this song.
4. Pleasant Grove – Only A Mountain
Probably the best song to ever come out of a Dallas band. Ever! Disagreements with that statement will be met with fists of fury. It still takes me back to the first time I saw PG live opening for the Old 97’s at Trees.
5. Jay-Z – Brooklyn Go Hard
See, I wasn’t lying. I can’t say exactly why, but this song just strikes me as very divergent of Jay-Z’s typical rhythm and cadence. It pays homage to a lot of classic styles and even makes a pasty white kid like me feel a bit gangsta (did I seriously just fucking write “gangsta?”).
6. The Weird Sisters – This Is the Night
Best song by a fictional band made up of some of the best bands the UK has offered us. This is the Pulp song that I always waited for in response to just about all of the content of Common People, but never happened.
7. Aimee Mann – Ballantines
Ever since Magnolia I can’t see or hear Aimee Mann without thinking about a rain of frogs. Hell, I was even listening to one of Jim Butcher’s Harry Dresden books that had a rain of frogs and I thought “Gee, an Aimee Mann song would be appropriate here.” This “chippy” tune wraps up her Smilers album and is probably the best track on the album.
8. Arcade Fire – Intervention
I swear these guys must have gone to college with me. This song sums up the way I felt about a lot of people I had to share the Baylor University campus with. I swear the only reason I ended up in Political Science was that I was afraid of all of the other people around me ending up running the world.
9. The Cherry Cokes – Bullet For Vapid Beer
OK, how awesome is this for a band concept: Japanese Irish Folk. No shits, these guys are Japanese and sing Irish folky-punk on par with the Flogging Molly. With most songs I can’t tell if they are singing in Japanese or English, but that sure as hell wouldn’t stop me from throwing back an Asahi Stout (do they even make that?) with these bastard-sans.
10. Wilco – Box Full of Letters
When Wilco first got going, I actually managed to insult Jeff Tweedy at a post-live show interview by saying both that this new incarnation wasn’t as good as Uncle Tupelo and that it sounded a lot like Cracker. Box Full of Letters summed that up for me, despite still being one of my favorite Wilco songs. I’m not saying I had any influence, but notice just how different Being There is from A.M.. I’m just sayin’.
11. 25%Toby – Skin Cancer
If you haven’t seen 25%Toby play live then you have truly missed out on one of the best treats to ever come out of Dallas. Toby Halbrooks is so insane on stage that they pretty much can’t play at many venues in Dallas anymore: due to equipment damage. I saw 25%Toby before I knew Toby really well and was seriously shocked by what transpired on stage. After getting to know Toby, I’m surprised anyone let him on stage in the first place.
12. The Germs – Richie Dagger’s Crime
This song always makes me want to hit things. Not people, mind you, just things. Actually, I’d really like to wreak havoc all over the produce department of a supermarket while this song blares over the P.A. system. I’m not sure why, but it sounds like a good idea.
13. The Warlocks – It’s Just Like Surgery
This is one of the ultimate mysteries of my music collection. Last week I see this band name on my iPod that I didn’t recognize, so I pop it on to see what it’s like. Out of the ether comes a band that is 85% Jesus and Mary Chain, 15% Placebo. Want it to be weirder? Apparently, I saw this band open for The Sisters of Mercy a couple of years ago. I own this CD and have no idea where it came from, but now I’m pissed that I haven’t been listening to them for the past couple of years. Hard living will do that to you.
14. Helium – Superball
Helium was one of those ultra-cool bands from my undergrad that made me and my friends give each other high-fives for knowing about. We were underground and cool because we thought Mary Timony was hot and sang edgy stuff and played with those guys who used to play with Mary Lou Lord after she got all acoustic-purist and would play the street corners along 6th Street in Austin during SXSW. Yeah, we were proto-hipster.
15. Transplants – Diamonds and Guns
Aside from reminding me of shampoo commercials, this song makes me feel way more hardcore than any old-school punk ever does. I think it’s the fact that it’s basically Rancid over some samples and crunchy guitars topped off with Skinhead Rob yelling about stuff. It’s like punk Gorillaz and a damn fine way to end a mix.