Friday, March 20, 2009

Friday Random 11

Is more random than 10 by factor of 1!

I am going to have the Russian scientists voice from the Colbert Shmeat episode in my head for a while. In fact, I am considering putting "Is inescapable future of humanity" on my tombstone (the grave, not the pizza).

We thankfully had the full monty appearance of spring this past week. It opened up its trenchcoat and flashed us with 50+ degree weather for a few days. We grabbed Libby and the stroller and headed out for a walk, not caring that the sidewalks were still slushy from the 200 inches of snow that had begun to melt. We were outside! And warm! And wearing but sweatshirts!

Our fellow residents joined us, rubbing their eyes like survivors emerging from their caves after a nuclear winter. Even the ice cream place on the next block opened up, and the line was at least two dozen deep. It was like the whole town was letting out one giant huzzah!

Last year, even though we had much less snow, we had no spring at all. The weather sucked Donkey Kong until around mid-June. Now, even though the cold has returned and we seriously did have 200 inches of snow around here, we experienced enough spring to recharge our batteries. And enough melting snow to remind me that I have to rake the leaves still, because they were buried under snow about three days after they finally fell off the trees.

Oh well. It's sunny and there's college playoff basketball. I also would like to say that the ability to stream these games onto my computer while I work is the greatest use of the Internet that doesn't involve pictures of naked people or cats with humorously misspelled captions.

1) "Radio Ga Ga," Queen. Not one of their finer moments, especially with the Con Agra Foods Extra Cheese Powder 80s production.

Even though the concept of radio is very different now, the songs from the 70s and 80s bemoaning the state of radio are still pertinent, even when they leave your ears covered in orange cheez dye. When we were on vacation, our rental car had satellite radio. It was great because we had a lot of stations to choose from, we found a few we liked, and we didn't have to worry about losing them. But of course you lose any local flavor, and we also noticed (since we were in the car a lot) that there was a lot of repetition, even on stations like the New Wave one. I suppose it's more transparent than Clear Channel owning an alleged "local" channel, but it's sad that great independent stations like Chicago's WXRT are so rare. Radio ga ga, indeed.

2) "The Writ," Black Sabbath. Holy shit, Ozzy's voice is unbearable on this (insert "when is it bearable?" joke here). He sounds like he sucked out the nitrous from of a dozen cans of Redi Whip. Be glad there is no video.

3) "Eleanor Rigby," The Beatles. The lyrics to this were in the poetry section of my senior-year English textbook. The editors dumped in a few rock songs to try and hook the kids into poetry ("Born to Run" and a Dylan song were included). Compared to the poets we were studying, they certainly seemed contemporary. To a class full of seventeen-year-old boys, it was a little too Big Chill. Our poets were more "I used to do a little but the little wouldn't do it so the little go more and more." It does go to show that the tradition of trying to trick kids into reading poetry goes back at least a couple of decades.

4) "Call Me on Your Way Back Home," Ryan Adams. Mandy Moore, really? I guess I shouldn't be that surprised. I saw him in a concert performance a while ago, one of those little intimate Unplugged kind of shows. He took questions from the audience, and all the questions were from cute girls. So maybe he has more Vincent Chase in him than I suspected.

5) "Goon Gumpas," Aphex Twin. The Richard D. James album has a brilliantly unsettling cover. It's one of those images that creeps me out enough that I can't stop looking at it, especially since the eyes follow me around the room.

6) "Cold Life," Ministry. Hard to believe that before Al Jourgensen was all fuzzed out guitars and relentless industrial beats, he was kind of Eurotrash dance. He has disowned this period of his career, and pulled the even greater cop out of saying he was pressured to make music that's more Drakkar than noir. That's code for "If I could, I would go back and kick my own ass."

7) "World's Apart," ...And You Will Know Us by the Trail of Dead. They are dead to me now, and this track was the turning point. I dig the music, but there's a huge slice of cobag pie in the lyrics. They're so kiddie-protest, this song should be called "If I Had a Hammer-Time."

8) "Dancing Days," Led Zeppelin. (A surprisingly not terrible cover by Stone Temple Pilots) VH1 Classic is a black hole for my attention span. I torture poor TLB with it from time to time, like a couple weeks ago when I insisted on watching the Behind the Music on Ratt. Why? I have no idea.

The other night, I was staying up to give Libby her midnight bottle, and flipped on VH1 Classic just in time to see a sweaty Jimmy Page in the middle of his cello bow guitar solo in The Song Remains the Same. Complete with dragon-embroidered jumpsuit, which you can purchase for your character in Rock Band. Despite being really terrible in parts, I watched for a good half an hour. Why? I have no idea. I also occasionally watch a nerdy fat guy and his meathead Long Island co-hosts interview washed up metal stars on That Metal Show. I have a problem.

9) "Saturday Nite," Ghostface Killah. I am way too white for this. Me listening to this is kind of like this guy dunking—kind of exciting to me, but awkward and difficult to watch.

10) "Chromakey Dreamcoat," Boards of Canada. Boreds of Canada is more like it. Creative stuff, but it's a bit like found sound wanking—a bunch of samples that don't really go anywhere. If there was an actual song here I would dig it the way I dig DJ Shadow.

11) "Top of the World," The Carpenters. Like I said, the sun is out and the greatest sporting event of the year is underway. This is a good way to go out.

I'd also like to extend an M-I-Z...Z-O-U for The Lovely Becky and our other Missouri alum friends. Here's hoping the Tigers avoid another gut-wrenching tournament loss.


Adorable Girlfriend said...

Glad you had some nice weather!

It's been sweet here too.

Good luck with the brackets!

Jennifer said...

Yeah! Let's hear it for a real spring!!!

This made me laugh... But of course you lose any local flavor
and made me think of the 24/7 Foghat you tend to get in parts of Wisconsin. Doesn't matter what year, what decade, what century... it's Foghat.

zombie rotten mcdonald said...

Random Responses

1. Queen had some bad moments in the 80s, but who didn't? Made in Heaven was a fine Swan Song. There's a local indy radio station that's good, but I haven't listened to radio in the car since getting an iPod converter, and even in the olden days, only listened to radio when my roomate was on the college station, or when Milwaukee had a pirate station.

2. Henry Rollins: The First Four Black Sabbath Albums. There were a lot of drugs in the 70s.

3. Zombie Dad: Hey, Young Pilgrim, you want to watch Jon Stewart? He's got Bruce Springsteen on as guest.

YP: Who's he?

ZD: Shut up and sit your ass on the couch. frackin kids today.

6. Later Ministry is very fine.

7. Never hear the lyrics on that one before. Now I will never be able to NOT hear them.

8. I have never been able to watch TSRTS. There were maybe too many drugs in the 70s.

Unledded, however, rocks. Especially Kashmir with a string section.

Ratt? TLB has tolerance indeed.

11. If I Were A Carpenter is pretty much the best tribute album ever done. Shonen Knife does Top Of The World. Second only to Sonic Youth doing Superstar.

zombie rotten mcdonald said...

Also, Con Agra Foods Extra Cheese Powder 80s production is Win of The week.

J, you got a problem with Foghat? Yeah, I do too.

Jennifer said...

A little Foghat goes a long way...

Von said...

This post had me laughing out loud. At my desk. Now they knowz I'm krazy.

Churlita said...

My daughter loves Queen. Her favorite song? My most hated, of course - Flash Gordon. I think she loves it just to spite me.

I added a bunch of Led Zeppelin to my running playlist and they're surprisingly great to run to.

TLB said...



You bastard. You just couldn't leave it alone, could you?

zombie rotten mcdonald said...

somewhat OT: "Cleansed By Fire" by Alice Cooper, from The Last Temptation, just came on my IPod, and I am totally rocking out, so I appy-pologize for any slight, real or imagined, concerning Ratt.

I have no right to feel superior, not at all.

zombie rotten mcdonald said...

Jennifer, when I was in school in a southwestern part of the State, we always had the same issue with a few bands that we came to refer to as 'Barf 'n' Boogie: Lynyrd Skynyrd, 38 Special, Molly Hatchet, Allman Brothers.... They were played in every bar, on every radio station, at every party....

The only place I ever saw with a worse problem was Janesville; serious Springsteen worship, and it took me years to get over it. But since they were a big GM town, I could always cut them a little slack on it.

Captcha word: woonsin, which is obviously a mutilated cheesehead reference. Plus, my spell check doe sNOT flag cheesehead....

zombie rotten mcdonald said...

Churlita, your daughter is obviously on the right track...

"FLASH!!! AAAAHHH-aaah!!"

Jennifer said...

'Barf 'n' Boogie


Brando said...

This made me laugh... But of course you lose any local flavor
and made me think of the 24/7 Foghat you tend to get in parts of Wisconsin. Doesn't matter what year, what decade, what century... it's Foghat.

The thing is, a slice of cheese like that can put a big smile on your face.

Most classic rock stations are very generic--they play the same classic tracks mixed in with crap like Nickelback. But we have one up here that goes the extra mile and plays more obscure groups or deeper tracks from the albums, and I find myself listening in the car just to see what they will pull out next. Maybe it will be Foghat, but it might be something from side 2!

Des's big daddy said...

Sadly, XRT has most definitely seen it's better days.