Tuesday, January 31, 2006

Telepopmusik - "Breathe"

Telepopmusik - "Breathe": "A counter-offer to yesterday and a current reminder for myself."

Monday, January 30, 2006

Friday, January 27, 2006

Pink Floyd - "Ibiza Bar"

Pink Floyd - "Ibiza Bar": "Strangely enough, I heard two covers of this song before I heard the original - but when I finally heard the Floyd version, I was blown away. Snaking psychedelic guitar leads intermix with hard riffs and aggressively pounded drumming - NOT at all the Pink Floyd I knew, but one with far more energy. True, Floyd's later work identified the band's distinctive voice better, but this song presaged some of my other favorite rock gems - nasty, dirty rock songs that make me want to sell my soul to rock'n'roll, like Bowie's "Panic In Detroit" and the Stones' "Sway." It's so short that I have to play it over and over to quell myself!"

Thursday, January 26, 2006

DEVO - "Girl U Want (Live Version)"

DEVO - "Girl U Want (Live Version)": "New wave in its pure, synthesized form. A great Devo song that gets more rocking all the time - a classic on album, faster in this live version, then even faster and harder when re-recorded years later for the Tank Girl soundtrack. Good in all flavors! "

Wednesday, January 25, 2006

Pavement - "Texas Never Whispers"

Pavement - "Texas Never Whispers": "From Watery, Domestic, one of the entries in my series of 'perfect EPs.' This whole EP swims in a sea of fuzzily melodic melancholy that hasn't aged in all these years. This is what happens when Pavement put aside their class clown roles, took the playfulness out of their tunes and just delivered four breathtaking tracks. Also of note - this song was later sampled (!) by Placebo (!!) for their similarly great track Slave To The Wage."

Tuesday, January 24, 2006

Echo & The Bunnymen - "The Cutter"

Echo & The Bunnymen - "The Cutter": "There's a marvelous sense of drama to this song, which is probably just due to Ian McCullough's vocal performance. (And that hair! And that voice coming out of that body!) A nugget from the days when they called this kind of music 'college rock' (or was this even before that??). My favorite Echo song..."

Monday, January 23, 2006

The Rock*A*Teens - "The Ram's Den"

The Rock*A*Teens - "The Ram's Den": "Yes! I am so excited that this track is now in Rhapsody. This is a first-rate 50s-tinged garage-style rave-up from the R*A*T's debut album. This band is what indie rock would have sounded like in the 50s, if people could have done home recordings in their garage - both very retro and very modern at the same time, not to mention a whole lot of fun too."

Friday, January 20, 2006

The Psychedelic Furs - "President Gas"

The Psychedelic Furs - "President Gas": "As sadly relevant today as it was as when it was released, this song still speaks for itself, at least in this country."

Thursday, January 19, 2006

Belly - "L'il Ennio"

Belly - "L'il Ennio": "A choice track from the oft-overlooked King album. True, Tanya Donelly's twisted fairy-tales of Star might have been more engaging, but this album was about adult mystery instead of strange kids stories. Here, Tanya is beautiful, defiant, powerful and vulnerable, all at the same time. When she sings 'now I'll make you pray like there's a God', it's like a Greek goddess returning to claim her power, inspiring both awe and fear."

Wednesday, January 18, 2006

Smashing Pumpkins - "Glynis"

Smashing Pumpkins - "Glynis": "I was in a bar the other night and they accidentally started to play this track before they skipped forward to some other Pumpkins track. I suddenly remembered the whole No Alternative compilation from `93 (which this track first appeared on) and it seems so long ago now that I actually am starting to accumulate NOSTALGIA. Scary, isn't it? So I felt like I had to bring this track back up. It's pretty and it makes me forget that I think Billy Corgan is kind of an ass."

Tuesday, January 17, 2006

The Clash - "I Fought The Law"...and the law won.

The Clash - "I Fought The Law": "I love the freedom that America's court system helps to preserve. And I would love to support that very court system myself. But when you have a job as demanding as mine is, it's really tough to get pulled out for TWO weeks for jury duty. Grand jury duty, at that. So now I basically have serious matters to deliberate over all day long and then I have to go home and try to keep up with my day job. Messed up, huh? So that's what this song is about. And I haven't posted the Clash yet, so it's worthwhile for that too."

Monday, January 16, 2006

Stevie Wonder - "Cash In Your Face"

Stevie Wonder - "Cash In Your Face": "I realize that 'Happy Birthday' would, in most ways, be more appropriate to post this day (from the Stevie Wonder cannon), but I thought it was important to point this song out too. My mom played this album a ton when I was little and so this song was probably the first time I kind of understood discrimination. When you're a kid, you don't really grasp a lot of those kinds of issues, but I kind of picked it up through the story in Stevie's lyrics. I think it's good proof that songs with messages can still teach a person something. So while I hope everyone takes some time to reflect on MLK's birthday, I think we still have a lot of growing to do as a country, which is why this song's really important even today."

Friday, January 13, 2006

Morningwood - "Nth Degree"

Morningwood - "Nth Degree": "Like a good pop single, I have become obsessed with this song! I got the single a while ago, but it only really popped out to me when I was listening to the album this week. It's completely infectious, even if its a bit cheesy. I mean, she freakin' spells out the BAND NAME even though it's semi-long. How rad is that? She's like a dirty cheerleader. Hot."

Thursday, January 12, 2006

Talking Heads - "Love -> Building On Fire"

Talking Heads - "Love -> Building On Fire": "I'm fascinated by this track - on record (as the group's first single), it's kind of sugary and silly, with the horns and all. Here, in this live version, it captures a more raw feel and yet it sounds like its a forerunner of everything from Modern English's warm yet icy new wave of 'I Melt With You' and Yo La Tengo's guitar interplay, circa May I Sing With Me. This track is one of the many on The Name of This Band Is Talking Heads that proves this live collection to be the definitive collection of the Heads' most important work."

Wednesday, January 11, 2006

Team Dresch - "Hand Grenade"

Team Dresch - "Hand Grenade": "I love this song so much, it makes me want to pogo like I was a kid back in SoCal. Kaia sings so sweetly, Scott Plouf (also of the Spinanes, Built to Spill) keeps the rhythm, and Donna Dresch and Jody Bleyle (also of Hazel) make the music pretty - but not safe. I can't begin to explain the power this song has over me, so please do me a favor and listen to it for yourself."

Tuesday, January 10, 2006

Creeper Lagoon - "My Friends Adore You"

Creeper Lagoon - "My Friends Adore You": "'Ooooh....I've tried to come down from loving you.' A sweet, sad number that erupts into a guitar rock-out. The ending washes away the ache of the rest of the song, which is too bad, but at least it keeps things from turning into a melancholy dirge. A good song to remember this band by."

Monday, January 09, 2006

Fleetwood Mac - "Silver Springs"

Fleetwood Mac - "Silver Springs": "I came to this song through strange means -
My boyfriend's band (Dirty Power) covered 'Rumours' in its entirety live at a benefit concert in `05 and included this song in the set, as it had been originally intended for that album. Recently, they started mixing the recording of that show and I re-discovered this song. I had never heard the original, but I loved the song. I still prefer their version to the softer Mac rendition, but this live version is pretty amazing. It's another song from the Pantheon of Stevie's Broken Heart, but it still resonates.

1/21/06 update: Dirty Power posted their version online! Check it out here!"

Friday, January 06, 2006

Frankie Valli - "Can't Take My Eyes Off You"

Frankie Valli - "Can't Take My Eyes Off You": "Okay, I have to admit that, since I no longer have access to NY1 (the local NYC news channel), I now wake up to the Today show...which, lately, has been sucking up to Jersey Boys, the new Frankie Valli/Four Seasons musical. The plus side is that it reminded me of this great song, a wonderful 60s pop tune, with horns, handclaps and crooning vocals, all total retro-cool."

Thursday, January 05, 2006

M83 - "Don't Save Us From The Flames"

M83 - "Don't Save Us From The Flames": "I don't know why, but I am always amused at how the intro breathy vocals that hardly sound like words are actually: 'Tina! Tina! Tina!', according to the lyric sheet. This song goes back to my shoegaze jones, with the keyboard washes and MBV-like vocal swirls. And it's a pretty song that also rocks. Good stuff."

Wednesday, January 04, 2006

Louis Phillipe - "Rafaella"

Louis Phillipe - "Rafaella": "Swinging 70s orchestral pop? Disco-lite? Sophisticatedly crooned vocals? UK-based Frenchman Louis Philippe has all the angles covered here, in what could be the theme song to some 70s soft-core epic. Luxuriate in it."

Tuesday, January 03, 2006

Liz Phair - "May Queen" (live acoustic version)

Welcome back from the holidays, campers! Here's a new track to start you off for the new year:

Liz Phair - "May Queen" (live acoustic version): "Ah, Liz Phair. I still prefer the album version to this live, acoustic version - but this version is special to me. I love this song on the Whip-Smart album and, when I met Liz earlier this year at a record convention in San Diego, I asked her to perform it at the upcoming Rolling Stone Original taping - which she did. So this song is actually for me and I love it! Plus it's nice to hear it in this tender, stripped-down arrangement. Enjoy."

Monday, January 02, 2006

My 25 Favorite Songs of 2005...Give Or Take

My 25 Favorite Songs of 2005...Give Or Take: "Breaking the usual rules of this blog, here are my 25 tracks of 2005, give or take (since some of the tracks I loved aren't available digitally yet!) - enjoy:"

1. The Denial Twist - The White Stripes
2. Japanese Girls (Album Version) - Robbers On High Street
3. Sally Is A Girl - 50 Foot Wave
4. The Fallen - Franz Ferdinand
5. Little Sister - Queens Of The Stone Age
6. Yflmd - Giant Drag
7. Hell Yes - Beck
8. Daft Punk Is Playing At My House - LCD Soundsystem
9. Walking Shade - Billy Corgan
10. Armed to the Teeth - Abandoned Pools
11. God Is Going To Get Sick Of Me - Aberdeen City
12. Good Sons - Starflyer 59
13. Destroy Everything You Touch - Ladytron
14. Cloud - Fischerspooner
15. I've Got You Memorized (Sandbagger's Remix) - Ivy
16. In A Funny Way - Mercury Rev
17. Anytime - My Morning Jacket
18. The Comeback - Shout Out Louds
19. The Bucket - Kings Of Leon
20. I Summon You - Spoon
21. Teen Angst - M83
22. Marching Bands Of Manhattan - Death Cab For Cutie
23. Love Seals Us From Loneliness - Idlewild
24. Do It Again - Nada Surf
25. Sexy Results - Death From Above 1979