Friday, April 10, 2009

Friday Random 11

It's one more random than 10!

Most days, I wake up with a song in my head. Sometimes it's something I've been listening to a lot, other times it'll be something completely random (my brain, the original iPod Genius software). The song tends to change on a daily basis, but every so often I get stuck on something that will not go away. I've spent all week with the Dracula Song from Forgetting Sarah Marshall stuck on repeat. I keep going around the house singing, "And if I see Van Helsing, I swear to the Lord I will slay him" in an accent like Sesame Street's The Count after one glass of absinthe too many. Quick Ebert and Brando at The Movies review: Forgetting Sarah Marshall is one of the better Movies I Thought Would Totally Suck but Actually Rocked. I have a strong suspicion that I would have been a lot like Jason Segel in this movie if had to do things like date when I was in my 20s.

It's also Easter weekend if you're a Christian and not using some Soviet-manufactured Easten Orthodox calendar, or if you're a chocoholic and/or rabbit worshipper. So Happy Easter to all of you who will be celebrating it. If you're not celebrating Easter, I'll see you in hell.* I'll be the one wearing the "I went to Catholic school for 12 years and all I got was this lousy eternal damnation" t-shirt.

*That is a joke. Not the part about me going to hell, though, that's still pretty likely. Happy Passover to AG and all other Chosen People out there.

1) "Sally MacLeanne," The Pogues. Rum, Sodomy, and the Lash may be the greatest album title of all time. I immediately get a thirst for Guinness whenever The Pogues come on. There is a hilarious introduction to this clip.

2) "Wouldn't It Be Nice," The Beach Boys. This is an open invitation to discuss how Pet Sounds is better than Sgt. Peppers. Feel free to get your music nerd freak on. I personally think the greatest weakness of Pet Sounds is that Ringo doesn't sing on it.

3) "Rhthm and Soul," Spoon. There should be a [sic] after "Rhthm." Why did they leave out the "y"? I don't know. Something else I don't know: in the previous sentence, does the question mark go inside the parentheses? Normally, I would say yes, but since I'm using quotations to show that I'm talking about a specific letter, I don't know, and I'm too lazy to go ask TLB, aka The Grammar Queen (who seriously knows everything about the English language). Something I do know: "Rhythm" is the longest English word that does not use a vowel. And "y" is the only bisexual letter in the alphabet.

4) "Black Flowers," Yo La Tengo. It usually takes a bit of repetition before I get into a song. I am one of those people who tend to play albums a lot right after I buy them so I can see which songs stick. Every so often, though, a song pops up that I don't know very well but immediately want to know better. This is one of those songs. I have to admit I have a weakness for the song-added-to-TV-show-video-montage YouTube videos.

5) "Definite Door," The Posies. Speaking of weaknesses, I am so easy for power pop music. If you record a fairly catchy song with melodic guitars that are front and center, I'm probably letting you at least get to second base. If I can sing the chorus after one listen, you're definitely at least sliding headfirst into third.

6) "Oliver's Army," Elvis Costello and the Attractions. If you're out of luck or out of work, we could send you to Johannesburg. One of the great lines in rock. I've mentioned this before, but it's kind of eerie to listen to late-70s rock (especially punk and New Wave) and hear how the concerns about everything going to shit sound very relevant to today's concerns about everything going to shit. It's somewhat reassuring to me, too, because I don't think even today's problems look as bleak as the late-70s shitscape did.

7) "Stop Your Sobbing," Pretenders. My favorite vocal performance by Chrissie Hynde. She manages to sound both caring and tough, like: "Hey, I know that you've had it rough and that's cool, but you need to get off the couch and deal. And shower. And burn those sweats." Great performance here on the old Letterman show.

8) "These Days," Jackson Browne. Like Yo La Tengo above, a real stopper, with a guitar line that weeps almost as much as The Beatles. While recorded much later, this song was written when he was 16. Do you know what I would have written at 16 if I had been writing songs when I was 16? Something about rescuing a princess from a dragon, with lines like You are so brave, Sir Knight/in winning your dragon fight/I hope you won't think I'm impolite/if I ask you to do it all night. Maybe, if it was a good day and I was feeling intellectual after doing a book report on Of Mice and Men, I might work in a play on "armor" and "amore." There would also be three guitar solos (each longer than the last), a drum solo, and maybe even a bass solo if it fit the motif. The song would of course end with the strike of a gong.

This is why Jackson Browne has a career as a musician and I bang on toy musical instruments in my living room while my wife mocks me. It's even sadder that the reason I didn't write songs when I was 16 is because I was too tired from masturbating to fantasies of rescuing princesses from dragons (I'll see you and your suggestive calendars in hell, Boris Vallejo).

9) "Lydia," Fur Patrol. To show that not much has changed in the 22 years since I was 16, the name "Fur Patrol" makes me snicker a little. Sad, I know, but it's taken a lot of maturity to reduce it to a snicker from the original guffaw I would have had. I'm hoping to eliminate it by the time I'm 60. This song has a terrific vocal and really does not deserve this level of immature commentary.

10) "Seven Nation Army," The White Stripes. You won't find this song on The National Review's list of "conservative" songs because a seven-nation army implies some type of UN security expedition that would make even Resurrected Jesus cry.

I'd like to pause for a moment and ask why wingnuts have such a difficult time when Democrats are in power. It's like we're back to the Klinton Konspiracies of the 1990s, where "Values Voters" (who always seem to have a fetish up their hidden leather sleeve) fear they won't be able to go to the church picnic without being sodomized by a newly married gay couple. The Daily Show ran this segment that illustrates how some GOP members are nuttier than a sack of elephant testicles. I understand being concerned about the bailouts and the deficit and the future for our children—we may disagree on tactics, but certainly the goal is to make the world a better place. I also can greatly sympathize with gagging on the Sausage of One-Party Rule. But tyranny and fascism because an elected government is doing...what the people who elected them asked them to do? Last time I checked, Obama didn't send assassins to Alaska to kill Sarah Palin with an icepick. It just shows how out-of-touch Republicans are. I mean, re-education camps? Everyone knows the re-education will be done via podcast, duh!

11) "Sway," Bic Runga. Such a nice, warm song, I have nothing snarky to say.

Enjoy the weekend, and remember to add one-part insulin to every four-parts Cadbury Creme Eggs.


Jennifer said...

Nice list!

I'll see you in hell. :) Happy Peepend.

Bill Stankus said...

12 years? The nuns must have figured you out - and they let you live?

zombie rotten mcdonald said...

I believe that Pogues song needs more N: "Sally MacLennane".

Mixing music pedantry with grammar zombie makes my day!!

The posies are great. Ever hear when two of the posies backed up Alex Chilton playing Big Star songs?

zombie rotten mcdonald said...

it's kind of eerie to listen to late-70s rock (especially punk and New Wave) and hear how the concerns about everything going to shit sound very relevant to today's concerns about everything going to shit. It's somewhat reassuring to me, too, because I don't think even today's problems look as bleak as the late-70s shitscape did.

This is a great comment.

Hopefully, you are saying that there are new-century Elvis Costello and the Clash out there somewhere.

But one very crucial difference; in the late 70's when things were going to shit, I was a kid. Living hand to mouth and without a real address (which I did, for a while) had a certain romanticism, could be looked at with a youngster's optimism.

From the other side of all these years, there's nothing romantic about being poor and in debt and homeless; the few things I've learned about the workings of the world do not lend themselves to giddy optimism.

Churlita said...

I played Rum Sodomy and the Lash at a coffee shop I worked at once. One of my co-workers asked me if I wouldn't mind taking it off because The Pogues just made her want to drink whiskey and punch people. I changed the music and thought that I would be so happy if I were one of the Pogues and found out my music had that effect on someone.

fish said...

The revolution will not be podcast.
It will not be brought to you in four parts by AIG.

Kathleen said...

LOL especially at #8 commentary!

Brando said...

I changed the music and thought that I would be so happy if I were one of the Pogues and found out my music had that effect on someone.No kidding. It takes real talent to generate that kind of reaction.

zombie rotten mcdonald said...

yeah. GG Allin also had an undeniable impact on people...