NOVEMBER - 36 Songs in 6 Days
The clusterfuck of music continues. . .
"We Dance (Alt. Mix)" by PAVEMENT: The deluxe 2CD rerelease of Pavement's third album, Wowee Zowee, hit the streets a few weeks ago. I almost ordered a copy until I scanned over the tracklisting and realized that I, in some format or another, own almost all of the material. Thank god for eMusic.com, where I'd previously bought most of the b-sides from the likes of the Pacific Trim EP. It was just a matter of a handful of downloads to catch the rest for less than a few dollars. One of those previously unreleased tracks is the alternate mix of "We Dance." I'm having trouble picking a favorite version. Definitely a great way to start out Pavement's weirdest, most experimental record. "Check that expiration date, man. It's later than you think."
"Lovin' Her Was Easier"by RICHARD BUCKNER: I posted the first track in July of 2005, but am reposting tonight in honor of the Pavement blurb. Here's what I said about Buckner's live cover of "Here" last year: I love his groaning, desperate vocals and the off-beat way he strums his guitar. The second track is a Kris Kristofferson cover. I had that song on repeat as I walked to work a few weeks ago. So damn good.
"The Light Before We Land"
"Mr. Blue Sky" by THE DELGADOS: Back when I lived in Delaware, right after I'd graduated from college, I found a decent job at an ad agency. With income burning a hole in my pocket and a decent indie store just up the street from my office, I often found myself on lunch break with nothing better to do than shop and ask for rec's from the store's employees. One day one of the kids pointed me toward The Delgados second album, Peloton ("Russian Orthodox" comes from that CD). While I enjoyed the album, I kind of just figured "another twee Scottish band for the pile" and forgot about the band. Then, my dumb ass went and slept on them for a few years, while they released a couple of fantastic, majestic, bombastic records, including Hate. I've got a lot of catching up to do. (To close things out, enjoy the now disbanded Delgados covering one of my favorite Electric Light Orchestra tunes.)
"You Just Make it Worse" by RADIO BIRDMAN: When old punk rockers reunite to rekindle past glories, it's not supposed to sound this good. Is it? From their triumphant return, Zeno Beach.
"Right Around the Corner"
"Shout Bama Lama" by THE DETROIT COBRAS: If you took the shittiest party in the world and added a few Detroit Cobras songs into the mix, you would have yourself a cool place to be. At least until the music stopped. I've never written a complete post about the band because the previous sentence is really all I have to say on the matter. If you don't like the Cobras, you don't like fun.
"A La Queue Les Yvelines" by JACQUES DUTRONC: I got some feedback from my previous posting of a Jacques Dutronc song, so here's another favorite from the Frenchman. I've seen Dutronc's music compared to the writing/music of Ray Davies and The Kinks, and this song definitely fits the comparison.
"Never Far Away" by ALUMINIUM: From semi-tribute/reinterpretation album Aluminium, where composer Jody Talbot worked with a symphony orchestra to rework songs by The White Stripes and Jack White. Tonight's track is a gorgeous instrumental take on one of White's originals on the Cold Mountain soundtrack.
"Four Fingered Fisherman"
"Salvador Sanchez" by MARK KOZELEK: Mark Kozelek, of Red House Painters/Sun Kil Moon/Mark Kozelek fame, just released a limited (to 10,000) edition double live CD, entitled Little Drummer Boy. If you buy it from his label, Caldo Verde Records, you'll also be entered to win one of the guitars Kozelek played on the tour commemorated by this album. Tonight's songs (the first a Modest Mouse cover, the second a solo performance of a Sun Kil Moon song) are just a couple of highlights from the 20 track, 100 minute release.
"Care of Cell 44"
"Time of the Season" by THE ZOMBIES: Look, you can't swing a dead cat around the Internet without hitting a few thousand bloggers telling you to go buy The Zombies' Odessy and Oracle. Consider this loud THWAK to be the sound of that cat hitting me. I've posted "This Will be Our Year" multiple times at this point. Please don't make me post it again. Another selling feature: "Time of the Season" is one of the best songs of all time.
"Time of the Season" by SNOWDEN: Snowden know the rule: if you're going to take on one of the best songs of all time, you'd better do something drastic. Here, they up the tension by about 1000% with a fuzzed out bass line and industrial percussion. This one is definitely Love It/Hate It, and I'm strongly in the former category.
"Oh, How to Do Now" by THE MONKS: Thank god for the great bloggers, like The Of Mirror Eye or Diddy Wah, because I'm not sure how long I would have waited to hear about The Monks without them. I guess if I'd paid attention to my liner notes, I would have noticed that The Fall recorded a version of "Oh How to Do Now" in the early 90s. I guess, in a way, it's cool that The Monks exist on record at all. The band was started by a bunch of Army GI's stationed in Germany in the mid-60s, who decided to stay together after being discharged. Their sound was loud and corrosive, and their lyrics blunt and sometimes angry. They were easily a decade ahead of their time.
"1st Things 1st"
"Big Brat" by PHANTOM PLANET: I keep seeing this holiday themed Old Navy ad, with a soundtrack provided by some unknown band that sounds almost exactly like Phantom Planet. The song, with a chorus of "Get your fash-on!," is horrible, and makes me hope that it isn't really Phantom Planet. Not because I'm a huge fan of the band, but because I think their third album, the self-titled Phantom Planet was really a big step in a different, interesting direction for the band. I bought the band's first album (where tonight's "Recently Distressed" comes from) not long after seeing the movie Rushmore. That movie had a pretty profound effect on me, and I was fascinated so much by Jason Schwartzman that I had to hear his band. While both their debut and second albums had a few good songs in the grooves, they were mostly disposable and bland. Oddly enough, it was the band's third album (and first without Schwartzman on drums) that caught my attention. Songs like "1st Things 1st" and "Big Brat" show hints of Spoon, Elvis Costello and the Police, and there's just a lot of rhythm to the thing. I still wouldn't say I'm a fan, but I liked the record enough to make me dread finding out that they are that aforementioned Old Navy band.