Thursday, August 1, 2013

Beck Is NOT Dead

In honor of Beck's upcoming mini-tour (and the fact that it, hopefully, indicates new Beck music is incoming within the next five years or so), I've put together an album's worth of random Beck tracks that have cropped up in the past few years. Some are b-sides, some are internet exclusives, some are random leaked tracks and so on.
I'll be seeing this son of a bitch in Prospect Park on Sunday, August 4th...maybe I'll ask him why he's been so reticent...

1. Defriended
The first of two(?) songs Beck released as singles on 12". He's said it has nothing to do with any potential upcoming album. It's just...a song. I don't love it, but it's new Beck and it proves, sort of, that...say it with me...Beck is not dead.

2. I Just Started Hating Some People Today
Recorded and released on a limited edition 7" along with another song on his last day in Nashville, this is...weird. It's fucking pure country and then kind of metal and then smooth jazz.
It's Beck.

3. Bonfire Blondes
A b-side from 2008's Modern Guilt. Quite frankly, I think it could have replaced "Walls" or "Volcano". Solid, boppy, beach rock Beck.

4. I Won't Be Long
The second of two(?) brand new out of fucking nowhere Beck songs. This one is a lot better than "Defriended" (or so think I) and, although it is also completely unconnected to any upcoming releases by Beck, hopefully it indicates that he's gearing up to do fucking something that doesn't involved producing or screenwriting or fucking basket weaving or other shit that isn't writing and recording and releasing his own god damn music.

5. Bloodless
This one...just kind fo popped up out of nowhere; no attached to any album or release and Beck never said anything about it. If this is what his next album sounds like, I'm fucking in.

6. Looking Out For A Sign
A sweet little song Beck did for the Jeff, Who Lives At Home soundtrack. For some reason, fans seemed to dislike this, saying it was commercial crap and so on and so forth. Fuck them, it's a solid Sea Change-esque song and I think it's nice.

7. Feel Good Time
This is a great Beck cover of the Pink song, right? WRONG. This was originally written and recorded by Beck and, when Pink wanted to cover it, he gave it to her. The silly bastard.

8. Vampire Voltage No. 6
Another b-side from Modern Guilt. A bit moody; I love what's going on here. The ending is just as filthy and grungy as the 60's. I also feel that this could have replaced "Wals" or "Volcano".

9. Sound + Vision
Sadly, the audio quality of this does not do it justice, so here's the original performance.
Just because it's mono doesn't mean it isn't amazing.
This is the second Bowie song covered by Beck, if you can tell me the first, I'll give you a candy, if you can tell me which Bowie song Beck remixed, I'll give you another...

10. Bad Blood
Dirty Beck sex in a swamp. And the swamp is full of sweat. In the South.
Grind on this.

11. Half & Half
The last b-side from Modern Guilt worth listening to. This has a kind of electro-doo wop feel to it. The chorus has something that I enjoy but can't put my finger on.

12. Ramona
A fully orchestrated version of Scott Pilgrim's song for Ramona Flowers. Thing is, it would be funny if it weren't so vulnerable and beautiful. The strings and harmonies are just perfect.

13. I Only Have Eyes For You
The final song of my wedding. Just as beautiful as the original, but four thousand times as creepy. When Beck reverbs the words "I only have eyes for yooooou", you can picture him wandering through the fog, holding out a pair of eyeballs in your general direction.
His eyeballs.
Or yours.
Whatever is creepier, that's what it is.

Friday, July 19, 2013

The New Totnes

Almost four months in the making, it is here at last...The New Totnes.
One track from every album Chris and I purchased on our honeymoon, the majority of which was purchsed at Drift Records in Totnes and the rest which were purchased at Rough Trade East in London*.
There is some good stuff, some great stuff, some stuff you'll hate, some stuff you'll...probably not hate as much and a lot of stuff you've probably never heard before.
And, obviously, some Nine Inch Nails.


1. Joe Meek and the Blue Men - "Valley Of The Saroos" - from I Hear A New World
I...this might not really dig this, but I can almost guarantee it'll be the most interesting thin you hear today.

2. John Grant - "GMF" - from Pale Green Ghosts
It was tough to just pick one track of this amazing album. Yes, yes, I went with the easy choice.
It's still a great song though.
See if you don't find yourself humming this while you're not paying attention.
If you enjoy this, I recommend "Ernest Borgnine", "It Doesn't Matter To Him" and "I Hate This Town".

3. Herve - "Gold (feat. Maria Minerva)" - from The Art Of Disappearing
Nothing to add, really, it's just a nice, mellow song, one of my favorites from the album.
4. Young Magic - "Slip Time" - from Melt
There were some unique tracks on this, but this one stands out above the rest. There's a lot of cool textures and depth to this one. If you like this, then you'll probably dig the album as well.

5. DJ Mink - "Hey Hey! Can U Relate?" - from Warp 10+2 Classics 89-92
This album was my only musical regret (not including Dirty Beaches, that was Christina's mistake to make). This is the ONLY track that stands out in any way and it's a remix. The idea that THIS was the label Aphex Twin was on...mind boggling...
But, on its own, this is a pretty fun track. It just might make you move your ass.

6. Damon Albarn - "The Apple Carts" - from Dr. Dee
I love the way things evolve and come together on this. If would fit perfectly into any Gorillaz album...about 15th century alchemists.

7. Serge Gainsbourg - "Chez Le Ya-Ya" - from Initials S.G.
This guy fucked.
A lot.
I don't speak French, but I assume this song was made to listen to before, during and/or after some fuckin'.
The title, literally, means "The House of Ya-Ya".
Take from that what you will.

8. Steve Mason - "Fire!" from Monkeys Mind In The Devil's Time
One of the only tracks that really jumped out at me. It didn't jump very far, but it isn't bad.

9. David Bowie - "Dead Against It" - from The Buddha of Suburbia
Although the intro might be a tad on the long side, it's David Bowie, and therefore you will sit quietly and listen.
Unless you don't like David Bowie...which would be...just weird.
Seriously though, I dig the brightness and warmth in Bowie's voice on this track. If someone had noticed this album had been released, this may have made it onto a Best Of or three.

10. Atoms For Peace - "Dropped" - from AMOK
This whole album is amazing, but this one stands out; the way it unfolds is what really does it for me. It's like walking through a garden of robot flowers as they blossom before you. And then Thom Yorke is singing.
Just like that.

11. Dirty Beaches - "Good Bye Edmonton" - from Water Park OST
I picked the shortest and most interesting track off this sleepy little turd that I could and tucked it between two really good songs. Don't worry, it's almost over.

12. Deptford Goth - "Guts No Glory" - from Life After Defo
This is the best song on a really solid album. It deals with loss in a soft and beautiful yet persistently tragic fashion. I highly recommend the album, as it all shares vibes with this track.

13. TV On The Radio - "Shout Me Out" - from Dear Science
I like where this starts and I love where this goes. Join in the celebration.

14. David Bowie - "I'd Rather Be High" - from The Next Day
The open and airy feel of this belies the anger Bowie is expressing about the war efforts.
Just thought you should know that. Still a solid track from the latest Bowie album.

15. Purity Ring - "Lofticries" - from Shrines
A beautiful and spooky track with some pretty unsettling lyrics. They make things a bit chilly...

16. Gary Numan - "Dead Sun Rising" - from Dead Son Rising
Unless you're a fan of Gary Numan, you're probably going to hate his voice. That plus the epic, dusty nature of this track...well, this is not for everyone. But I love the story here, and I'd love to know more about the narrator. "I've watched gods bleeding / I've watched worlds burn / I've watched stars falling / and I watched the dead sun rising."

17. Nine Inch Nails - "Right Where It Belongs v2" - from With Teeth
While a version of this is on the domestic release, this version was only available on UK copies of the album. I think this is tolerable for those not balls deep into Nine Inch Nails.
I think.
As always, I'm way too close to tell for certain.

18. Washed Out - "A Dedication" - from Within and Without
The perfect ending. Or not.

19. The Flaming Lips - "All You Need Is Love" - from The Terror
This is sort of a hidden track off the album (even though it's not technically on the album) and I know it's a bit of a cop out, but you've earned something familiar.

* Except for The Next Day, which was purchased at the last open HMV on Earth, located in Cardiff, Wales.

Wednesday, November 14, 2012

Quick Turnaroud: A Review of Yes, I Like Nine Inch Nails

aka, Jade doesn't do any work when she's the only one in the office.

1. Immigrant Song - destroyed by Karen O

I'm a bit of a sad case and I'm a big Zepplin fan (when I was in primary school, I called a local radio station to request D'Yer Mak'r - they played it. Score. Love a good dad joke / sad pun) and I've never liked Karen O / The Yeah Yeah Yeahs. In fact, their very moniker shits me to tears.

That said, the music on this track is killer, but the whole thing is ruined by her horrible voice.

2.  Linoleum - Tweaker

Ok, I've been reading Paul's blog forever and I've never bothered to check out tweaker. This song is pretty swoonworthy. Am I alone in getting a bit of a Scott Weiland channelling moody, 80s future-industrial? Anyway, A+, would recommend, check out more of their stuff.

3. Growing Up - Peter Gabriel

You know, I am not a Peter Gabriel fan. In fact, I'm the antithesis of a Peter Gabriel fan, that song with the digging in the dirt and the bugs crawling and the sheer utter twattery of sledgehammer? Yeah, NOT a fan.

I like the slow burn on this one, but Gabriel is just so boring. Is he counting ducks? Without the bassline, well, he would have put me to sleep.

4. Madame X - Robbie Robertson

Buzzword for this mixtape: Haunting.

I haven't seen the film, but the opening of this track sounds SO familiar to me, like someone smashed up The Bee Gee's How Deep is Your Love and Sealed with a Kiss by anyone by Jason Donovan.

5. Pleasant Smell - 12 Rounds

No. Just no. Aural assault at 7 in the morning.

6. Banged & Blown Through - Saul Williams

I'll be honest, you nearly lost me at 'slam poet'.

I take issue with your use of the word 'rap', unless this track is an anomaly on the album, but I dig, I dig. Frankly, his voice is horrible and I think he needs to maybe take a lesson or two in things like... well.. tone and pitch, but yeah, really thought provoking. Very strongly Reznored, but it really adds something powerful in this instance (in every instance).

7. On the Wing - How to Destroy Angels 

Ok, so I get the impression that Atticus Rose is to the Rez what Warren Ellis is to Nick Cave, no?

This chick doesn't seem to have a powerful enough voice to not be entirely swamped by the music, but it's not bad.

8. Heartbeats - Sono Io

I'll admit that I thought this one was going to be a dirty sexy version of the Jose Gonzales song.

It's not, so I'll contain my disappointment.

I find the vocals really compelling, and find it a bit surprising that he's an Italian, because he definitely sings with a mad brit tone. Me likey.

9. No Fair Fights - Prick

I think I must be overtired, because I can only hear David Bowie in this one. But, like, David Bowie doing spoken word for 7/8ths of a song and then David Bowie doing Trent Reznor karaoke for the rest.

10. Victory - Puff Daddy et al

LOL. Where you at?

Nah, I don't hate it. Completely misogynistic, but I can get over that. When they get a bit overexcitied, I just remember the classic Luda lyric: 'watch out for my medallions, my diamonds are reckless, feels like a midget is hanging from my necklace' and then I laugh. A lot.

Oh Luda, you so crazy.

11. I'm Afraid of Americans - David Bowie

I'm just putting it out there that I don't like David Bowie (other than as the Goblin King, but that shouldn't need clarification).

Actually, so far this is the first song that I recognise, so it must have been EVERYWHERE at the time.

Don't hate it.

12. Chip Away - Jane's Addiction

I saw Jane's Addiction in my formative years, life changer, and this version isn't so different from the ridgy didge. Certainly, that marching band drumming is wonderfully familiar. Definitely see the electronic influence, but it's funny, because I had always thought of NIN being influenced by JA, rather than the other way around.

You didn't write this one up, but I'm guessing there's more of a connection than them touring together?

13. The Reflecting God - Marilyn Manson

 I just...nah. Can't get beyond the try-hardiness.

Although... does he round it out by shouting 'shoo, shoo, shoo, motherfucker'?

14. Passive - A Perfect Circle

I actually love this song, I've always loved this song.

No one ever gives James Iha any credit, so I'm going to put that out there. I really like Tool, I think I've mentioned that here before, but this just seems like it fits seamlessly into their cattle dog.

15. Forgotten - TV on the Radio

Nice background noise.

16. Shit Stories - Trent Reznor

Yeah, sorry, don't have time for ten minutes of poop stories right now.

All in all, the album feels really cohesive with that underlying dirty drum / synthy goodness that is such a Reznor trademark.

A few of these songs will find their way into my permanent rotation, so cheers for that.

Tuesday, November 13, 2012

Yes, I Like Nine Inch Nails

In case you have somehow forgotten who I am...I enjoy the music of Nine Inch Nails.
And, as this is, ostensibly, a mix tape club, I know a lot of you are probably concerned about being inundated by a lot of Nine Inch Nails music that you either don't enjoy or have no interest in whatsoever.
With these things in mind, I offer something that is all connected to Nine Inch Nails...but actually features no music by Nine Inch Nails.

P.S. I do plan on using Nine Inch Nails music in later entries because there is not an emotion that can't be expressed perfectly by their music god I luv tRent Rezzner SO MUCH Imgonnamarry him.

Maybe I'm being facetious...


Immigrant Song - performed by Karen O., music by Trent Reznor and Atticus Ross
In 2011, Reznor and Ross created the score for David Fincher's remake of The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo. Fincher told Reznor he wanted to do a cover of Led Zeppelin's "Immigrant Song". After several different incarnations, this is the result. It opens the movie beautifully and works just as well here as an opener.

Linoleum - tweaker
Chris Vrenna, the mind behind tweaker, was Nine Inch Nails' live drummer for most of their live shows in the 90's. He also did some work on the band's seminal work, The Downward Spiral. I would be lying if I said I'd have ever given tweaker the time of day had Vrenna not been affiliated with NIN, but, I did and, unlike some ex-NIN band members' solo projects...there is a lot of really amazing stuff here. Thus far, Vrenna has released three albums as tweaker, The Attraction To All Things Uncertain (2001) and 2am wakeup call (2004) and, just recently, Call The Time Eternity. Their first album, (released September 18th, 2001) provided a strange sort of comfort after the events of the previous week.

Growing Up (Reznor mix) - Peter Gabriel
One of the only things produced by Reznor during the horrid drought between his 1999 album and his 2005 album. Reznor adds a lethality and sense of foreboding to what was originally a well-made but somewhat forgettable dance track. The painstakingly detailed electronic distortion and simple, harsh bass and rattling drum beat provide a depth to which some might not want to sink. After hearing this version, I find myself ignoring the original.

Madame X - Robbie Robertson
Anyone who's heard anything off The Social Network score will recognize the unsettling, jittering strings being chewed up and abused in the background of this otherwise sleepy, acoustic instrumental. You want to scare some folks from the Mid-West? Get T Rezzy on your shit.

Pleasant Smell - 12 Rounds
12 Rounds was Atticus Ross' band before he hooked up with Trent Reznor and made some of the best music of Nine Inch Nails' career. The vocalist on this track is the lead singer, his wife, Claudia Sarne. Her voice is so...specific. I'm thinking a lot of you are going to hate her and I understand. There's a reason 12 Rounds didn't take over the world. But I feel like her somewhat bluesy, cracked rasp works here. Reznor produced this album, My Big Hero (1998), and released it on his Nothing Records label.

Saul Williams - Banged And Blown Through
Slam poet Saul Williams had released two album of hip hop/rap/poetry before Reznor saw his bare bones and powerful video for his track "List Of Demands". After that, he contacted Williams and asked him to open for a leg of Nine Inch Nails' 2006 tour. After that, he offered to produce Williams' next album. What actually ended up happening was Reznor writing most of the music for the album and coopting bits and pieces of unfinished and unreleased tracks from his own 1999 album, The Fragile, in order to create something hard and dark and brave and amazing. The result was 2007's The Inevitable Rise and Liberation of Niggy Tardust, and it is the most riveting, nuanced rap album I've ever heard. I almost don't want to call it simply "rap". While it isn't for everyone, it's unlike anything you've heard before.

How to destroy angels_ - On the wing
After touring for almost three years straight, Reznor announced, in late 2009, that he was taking some time off from Nine Inch Nails. One of the things he worked on was How To Destroy Angels, a band consisting of him, long time musical cohort Atticus Ross and his wife, Mariqueen Maandig with recent addition, Rob Sheridan, who had, up until that point, been in charge of artwork, design, web integration and other takss in that vein. Since the late 90's, Reznor had talked about wanting to start a side project with a female vocalist...HTDA is that project. The songs are written by and, for the most part, sung by Mariqueen while the music is written by and, for the most part, performed by Reznor and Ross. In June of 2010, the band released a free, 6-track EP and then, on November 13th, 2012, they released another 6-track EP, from which this is taken. Their first, full-length album is due out Q1, 2013.

SONOIO - Heartbeats (Jesper Drums Mix)
Native Italian, Alessandro Cortini, served as NIN's keyboardist for about 5 years until Reznor put the band on hiatus in 2009. After that, he started SONOIO (Italian for "it's me"). The fact that everything you hear is one man and a bunch of synthesizers always gets to me; makes me think, well, if he can do it...etc. Have I ever made anything as good as Cortini? Well, that all depends on if you like his stuff or not. Some of you might find his voice a bit grating, but there's real feeling there. Thus far, he's put out two mini-albums (not quite EPs and not quite LPs) entitled "blue" and "red". Hopefully his third, as yet untitled, piece of this project will be out some time in late 2012 or early 2013.

Prick - No Fair Fights
Prick (led by Lucky Pierre singer and guitarist Kevin McMahon) was another of the bands that Reznor signed to his Nothing Records label back in the early 90's when everyone gave him everything. Aside from signing Prick, he also produced and did backing vocals on a few tracks from their self-titled debut album. This is one of them. Anyone who knows Nine Inch Nails...which is none of you but Chris...will immediately think this is totally NIN with a different lead vocalist and less electronic distortion. I like how weird McMahon sounds on this and the flow and evolution of the song, even if it's a bit overly mid-90's industrial.

Puff Daddy feat. Busta Rhymes and the Notorious B.I.G. - Victory (Nine Inch Nails remix)
Okay. I'll admit, this is over-the-top and verging on ridiculous. But, then again, so is a lot of gangster rap. This remix was sort of Reznor's tongue-in-cheek response to the whole nu-metal/rap+rock bullshit of the time period. He later confessed that he did it for the money and the laughs.

David Bowie - I'm Afraid Of Americans (V1)
One of my biggest regrets (musically) was missing the David Bowie/Nine Inch Nails tour of 1996. Since then, Reznor has sung with a few other people, but never has his voice so perfectly melded with another than with Bowie. Check out their version of "Hurt" if you don't believe me...although why you wouldn't believe me on a topic such as this...well, I don't would kind of baffle me, that's all...anyway, when Bowie put out his Earthling album in 1998, he got Reznor to completely deconstruct and reconstruct his track "I'm Afraid Of Americans". The other five versions (V2 through V6) verge on unintelligible, ego-centric experimental pap (although V3 features a guest appearance from none other than Ice Cube), but this one got mucho radio play. It takes the glitchy, quirky original and makes it bigger and more dangerous. And yelling. Reznor adds some yelling too. This track comes with a video of Bowie being chased through downtown New York by Reznor. It's...kind of silly.

Jane's Addiciton - Chip Away
While touring (opening, actually) with Jane's Addiction on 2009's NIN|JA tour, Reznor and Ross got them in the studio to re-record some of their earlier work with Reznor as a producer. There was this and "Whores". Basically, they're darker than the originals, more Nine Inch Nails-y. Truthfully, I've never been a Jane's Addiction fan and, at both of the shows I saw on the tour, I left either before or just after they took the stage.

Marilyn Manson - The Reflecting God
As unlistenable and just awful as this guy has become in recent years, there was a time when Marilyn Manson had something going for him, and, as anyone who doesn't currently work in Hot Topic will agree, it was when Reznor was creating music with him. His first album and EP were produced by and featured Reznor here and there and his second and best album Antichrist Superstar was the apex of their musical collaboration. I'll spare you the details of the album's dark, apocalyptic concept and nutshell it thusly: Reznor took everything Manson did on the album and made it better. He brought depth and substance and texture to places where there was little or none. Manson came to Reznor with an album, and Reznor made it a masterpiece. This is the second to last track and I don't think any of you will make it a minute into the song. And I understand.

A Perfect Circle - Passive
All right **deep breath**...from 1995 to 2004, there existed the rumor of a supergroup called Tapeworm featuring Trent Reznor, Danny Lohner (NIN live bassist), Charlie Clouser (NIN live keyboardist), Alan Moulder (producer), Maynard James Keenan (lead singer of Tool) and Atticus Ross (programmer and half of 12 Rounds). Other contributors included Phil Anselmo (lead singer of Pantera), Josh Freese (super drummer for a shitton of bands, most recently NIN), Toni Halliday (lead singer of Curve), Page Hamilton (guitarist/singer of Helmet) and Tommy Victor (lead guitarist/singer of Prong). Over the years, two songs have (kind of) come out of this project. One is a song by the band Puscifer called "Potions" and the other is this song. In recent years, Reznor admitted that some material had been recorded but that none of the artists involved thought any of it was good enough to be released as its own thing.
Thank you...?

TV On The Radio - Forgotten
Aside from touring with them and remixing some stuff and doing a few songs with them and Peter Murphy (including an amazing version of the Bauhaus' "Bela Lugosi's Dead") on the 2006 Nine Inch Nails tour, Trent Reznor has nothing to do with TV On The Radio...except for the fact the he got me into them, and I'm incredibly grateful. They have a unique and appealing sound unlike a lot of stuff out there and I hope you dig it. Check out their albums Return To Cookie Mountain and Nine Types Of Light for more great stuff by them.

Trent Reznor - Shit Stories
Back in the days of Napster, when I would search for "Nine Inch Nails" several times a day, every day, I came across a file entitled "Trent Reznor - Shit Stories". How...could I not...have downloaded it?
And,'s everything it promises to be: almost ten minutes of Trent Reznor telling stories about pooping. And it's fucking hilarious. I beg you to listen to the whole thing, as, buried in it, is Reznor accidentally doing an amazing Buffalo Bill impression.

Friday, November 9, 2012

"Disappointment" doesn't cover it...

Anyway, I'm going to post something soon, maybe next week.
And then no one will listen to it.
And then we'll all die.

Friday, August 10, 2012

Hot Butter Jam

I'm nothing if not a trend-follower.
And so, I present my summer mix tape: the Hot Butter Jam!

Mika - Lollipop
Overplayed, you say? Well then Mika shouldn't have made it so god damn catchy.
Children dancing under a fire hydrant's spray having the kind of fun that we, as adults, can't (or aren't allowed to) have any more...until Mika comes flying out, playing the piano and leading the cast of Stomp in one of those stompy foot displays that are so obnoxious on the subway when you're trying to read.
What says summer more clearly (and loudly) than that?

David Bowie - Pablo Picasso
This man can do anything he wants, and that includes tearing this plodding Jonathan Richman and the Modern Lovers song a fiery new asshole with a huge, razor-sharp guitar lick. This song finds you flying over a shimmering desert, propelled solely by Bowie's voice and that god damn guitar riff.

Mickey Avalon - California Crack Cocaine
Okay, yes, the song is about drugs, BUT it's full of summery references and that chorus is so fucking catchy that it'll have you humming or, hopefully, singing the words at work, then having to explain them to your boss, then having him listen to it, then singing it HIMSELF!!! MAKE NEW FRIENDS!!!

Discovery - I Want You Back
You ever think there's something creepy about the original? About a little boy singing about all these big boy feelings? We'll these guys did and this is an excellent cover, so you'll just have to deal with it.
Pump this with the Turbo Bass® ON....actually, never mind, because this beat is MADE of Turbo Base®.

Flight of the Conchords - Foux Du Fafa
So breezy and ridiculous. And, come on, we've all faked a French accent to get some "summer lovin"*, haven't we?
No. We have not.

Gorillaz - 19/2000 (Soulchild remix)
One summer, I took a train from Orlando to Miami to visit Phil. I burned myself a mix CD that perfectly encapsulated the event: the anticipation of all the madness we were about to get up to, the joy of being with one of my best friends for days on end, and the cherished memories of when the trip, sadly, inevitably, had ended. This song was track number one. It takes the rubbery, dubby feel of the original and shines some sun on it, making it sparkle. Permission to shake your ass is granted, so long as you get the cool shoe shine.

Barry Adamson - Something Wicked This Way Comes
Laid back. Laid aaaaall the way back into Supreme Mellowness.
Also sporting a Hawaiian shirt and wearing sunglasses LONG after sunset.

The Bird & The Bee - So You Say

Beck - Girl/Timebomb
You want an essay on why Beck is on here twice? I'll write you one, you know I will.
But, for now, an explanation: of my five favorite bands, none of them does summer music like Beck. Nine Inch Nails comes close with "March of the Fuckheads", but this isn't horseshoes, folks. I put these two tracks on here back to back because I could not decide which one worked better. On one hand, you have the tried and true "Girl", which is probably the best summer jam on here; it has the high energy acoustic guitar strumming, it has the soaring chorus, those hand claps and it's just made for listening to while driving along a coastline in a convertible. On the other hand, there's "Timebomb". It's also high energy, but more stark, a little dangerous, and not as well known as the former. Plus, it has the word "ziggurat" in it, and nothing is more summery than a ziggurat. Honestly, I would have been perfectly happy with just adding "Girl" to this here summer mix...but I'm lying. I wouldn't have been.
Let me put it another way: What did you have for lunch, fellow Bite The Musicians?
A Hot Beck Summer Jam Sandwich, hold the complaining.

Bush - Glycerine
That one of my first in Florida, all I did was watch MTV. In the evenings, it was The Maxx and The Head and The State and Liquid Television, and, during the day, the MTV Beach House. God damn how I hated all those people. Not because they were having fun and I wasn't, but because I knew, even back then, that they were worthless and pointless and on fucking TV. They played this song at least once every hour. I'm sure some folks at my high school lost their virginity to this...but I was not one of them.

Green Day - When I Come Around
Same summer...same MTV Beach House...same hour.
Hey, anyone remember The Grind? That show where you'd just watch idiots dry hump each other in MTV's pseudo-industrial studio?
Wow was that stupid.

Mali Music - Le Mogon
I'm going to shoot a video for this. It's going to consist of a family of sloths (arranged by height, the baby in the back) walking through the sun-dappled jungles of Costa Rica and bobbing their heads to the beat.
My Kickstarter launches soon.

Erasure - Chains of Love
Childhood summer of forever; this song: all day, every day. Endless Summer.

Red Hot Chili Peppers - Walkabout
The images contained within this song are very summery.
Every time I hear it, I delight in picturing the band just wandering through a desert; some of them barefoot (Flea is definitely barefoot), some wearing sandals.

Ol' Dirty Bastard - Last Call
But the summer isn't just about cars and the beach and cook outs and sex with girls, no! It's about getting crunk (which is "drunk", but misspelled because you're too drunk to remember how to spell it correctly)! And who knows more about music and getting crunk than the Ol' Dirty Bastard. He continues to move our asses from beyond the grave, like some horny specter with a Ouija board, but, instead of a Ouija board, it's our asses This also serves as a fitting prologue...

The Streets - Fit But You Know It
And thus begins the Drunkest Night Triptych.
You and your friends hit a pub, maybe get some food (but not nearly enough to soak up all the alcohol you're about to ingest) and then begin to steadily drink, and drink, and drink until...

Gabin - Bang Bang To The Rock 'N' Roll're at a backyard barbecue and getting ready to leave. Whose house this is and where it is, you have no idea and it doesn't matter. You are so drunk that you can either speak or walk, but not both and neither well. Whose vomit is this, whose shirt is this? The one thing you do know is that you need to leave and why...because that cute girl said she's going to this other party across town...and maybe she'll see you there?

Nouvelle Vague - Too Drunk To Fuck
Whoa. That got out of hand rather quickly. Bad luck, friend-o: you picked the girl with...issues. I'd get out of there as fast as I can, if I were you. And, once you do...the Drunkest Night Triptych ends in tragedy. But, there is a coda...

The Rapture - No Sex For Ben
It isn't Ben's fault. He was cock blocked by that crazy, French chick who started crying and waving a goddamn marlin spike around! She said it was for the limes...but no limes were in evidence..
Maybe next time, Ben.

The Flaming Lips - It's Summertime
Too easy? Wrong. YOU'RE too easy! Zing!!!
All the pussy/cock/ass chasing is over, the sun is setting. Sit back, relax. Take it is summertime after all...and, if you look inside, all you'll see is a self-reflected inner sadness.
Also, I like that the bridge at the end sounds like "Fuck Wit Dre Day" from The Chronic.

The Last Car - Firefly
Fireflies come out at night in the summer. And that's all you're gonna get.

*read: 'butt lovin'"

Tuesday, August 7, 2012

A review of "Wet Hot Australian Summer"

Sorry it took so long, but here it is...

"I Love It" - Aussie rap sounds so NOVEL to me. The Streets win when it comes to foreign rapperers but this is interesting. Not being Australian, I don't know these who would be these guys American counterpart and I think that might help me understand them better. Great opener.

"L.I.F.E.G.O.E.S.O.N." - Whoa. This is SO radio friendly; musically if not lyrically. The singers voice and delivery remind me of Lou Reed more than Tom Petty, specifically "Walk On The Wild Side", but I can totally hear the "Lola". Sadly, this is too sunshiney and sugary for my music teeth to properly bite. Undeniable good feel though.

"Heart It Races" - Love the beginning vocalizations, feels very summer, very exotic. Some of the least annoying steel drums I've ever heard. Vocals get a bit annoying though, bummer.

"Jump Into The Fog" - I love this. First excellent song on the album, in my opinion. Great synth and I dig the guy's voice. This seems very mainstream. I'm wondering how much of this album is from Triple J's weekly Top 10n...

"Even Though I'm A Woman" - Don't really love this. Can't say why...maybe because I'm not a woman? It's too...straightforward? Nice and sweet and sad and meh. I'm such a dick. Let's watch football and put ground beef on nachos and drink beers and stuff.

"The Signal" - Same feelings as "I Love It", but I liked that better. There's less going on here. Oh, and the fact that this is an "oldie from 2007"? Makes me feel creaky.

"This Heart Attack" - Almost completely and instantly turned off by the "aahh aahh's". By the time the chorus kicks in, I'm gone. Pass.

"Tongue Tied" - BIG 80'S HOUSE PARTY!!! JUMP ON THE BED!!! The beat and that sparkling keyboard just WIN. A lot. "Marmalade. We're making out." What?! WHO CARES???!!!  SLUMBER PARTY!!!! TRUTH OR DARE AND COCKSUCKING COWBOYS!!!!

"Rapunzel" - Yes. YES. This is the most summery summer rap EVER. That surf rock background is IT. I feel like Jade and Kaitlyn could make the best summer rap mix tape EVER.

"It's Nice To Be Alive" - This is also IT. So sugary sweet it's ACTUALLY sweet. Love the "don't stress, it's dumb" line. The rampant, baseless happiness here works great. Like Bobby McFarren but not retarded. And I'm not just saying that. He was mentally handicapped.

"Dreamshaker" - Ah fuck and god damn it! The ONLY THING wrong with this is the lead singer's voice. Like poison ass in my ears. Sad. Face.

"Vitriol" - Man, this track is ALL about those keys. Love that old haunted house organ and that funky guitar patch thing...distracts from the fact that this song is just a chorus repeated six times. SUPERGOODBURN!!!!

"The Festival Song" - SO the story and this guy's voice and HATE the Eels sample and that chick's backing vocals. Torn. In. Half.

But an excellent end to a fully realized and bitten musical endeavor. Listening to the Australian artists on here is like listening to summer pop from another dimension where everyone has funny accents, a very exotic and enjoyable sensation. Several teeth up, my Aussie friend, several teeth up.

I wonder if I should make a summer mix tape...?