CD 08: Snookered – Tracklist
Tracklist, random video links and other ramblings after the jump.
1. Title track: Neutral Milk Hotel – In the Aeroplane Over the Sea – video
Transcendent little rock number about dying. When I die, they should play this at my funeral. I’d say the song is a standout, but I’d be lying. If you like this track, get the whole album, which is utterly amazing.
2. I Command You: Low – Just Stand Back
Low is “notorious” (um, I suppose) for slowcore dirges, and yet can totally deliver on a nice little pop song like this one. I like the springy, but darkly humorous chorus.
3. Human Anatomy 101: The Soft Boys – Sandra’s Having Her Brain Out
A mini rock-opera, as if Robyn Hitchcock would ever pen one. Note at least three distinct and memorable melodies woven together seemlessly.
4. Song about waiting: Flaming Lips – Waitin’ for a Superman – video
Hi-fi high-concept noodling. Don’t you wish a hero would save us all? Well, Superman can’t airlift us out of the mess we’re in.
5. Novelty song: Dead Milkmen – Beach Party Vietnam – video
My criteria: Had to actually like the song, and it had to have been played on the Dr. Demento Radio Show. It’s really a clever tune about 20 years too late (as it was released in the mid 80s) since the “beach party” movies reached their zenith in the midst of the Vietnam War.
6. Great song on a shit album: Liz Phair – Polyester Bride – video
Hate to kick a girl (again) when she’s down, but if her debut Exile in Guyville weren’t so magical… Apparently she’s attempting a career revival, which would be nice, considering how quickly she tried to sink it.
7. Song from 2008: Deerhunter – Nothing Ever Happened – video
I’ll take these guys over that Radiohead bunch.
8. Song about school: The Smiths – The Headmaster Ritual – video
Run Manchester schools
Ah, school days.
(Full disclosure: Stole this suggestion for a song about school on a recent episode of NPR’s Sound Opinions. Still wish I could’ve made room for “Be True to Your School” by the Beach Boys.)
9. This & That: Ted Leo/Pharmacists – Me & Mia – video
If this song is actually about an eating disorder, it’s gotta be the rockingest tune ever about the topic.
10. Dedication: Iron and Wine – Such Great Heights – video
True, it may seem like a stretch
But it’s thoughts like this
That catch my troubled head
When you’re away, when I am missing you to death
For my lovely wife, whom I never to be in the same town with lately.
11. Favorite song from the year you graduated high school: The Pixies – Velouria – video
A song about a lovely and soft fabric girl. Honest. Or maybe, it’s just the meth talking. The video linked above is also somewhat notorious: it made just one appearance on MTV (during the relative heyday of the Pixies popularity in college radio) because some bigwig thought it was among the worst videos he’d ever seen. If you watch it, here’s something else: the actual time it took the band to climb down from the rocks is around 10 seconds – but it’s stretched out in slo-mo to the nearly 4-minute length of the song. Gotta be one of the most lo-fi music videos (pre-Internet) ever produced for a major-label band. It’s simple and oddly beautiful, but I can see where MTV would think it wrong for their channel.
12. Song you are most surprised to discover in your CD/MP3 collection: Bee Gees – How Can You Mend a Broken Heart?
Surprised doesn’t begin to describe my feeling about this song, though it features one of the best collective sighs in rock history. I do recommend the Al Green version, though.
13. Kick-ass cover: The The – I Saw the Light – video
From an entire album of kick-ass Hank Williams covers. Original Hank video.
14. Song with your name in the title: Pogues – Poor Paddy – video
Thank goodness for my traditional Irish name, Spider Stacy on tin whistle and Shane Macgowan’s wicked hoot from a gaping maw.
15. Smoking song: Rufus Wainwright – Cigarettes and Chocolate Milk – video
Though I could’ve picked any Cypress Hill song. Rufus is currently staging his first opera, which is probably long overdue, given his penchant for storytelling thru music, as evidenced here.
16. Song about magic: Lilys – Black Carpet Magic
How I love the underrated Lilys from Philly. Not to be confused with any other Lilys you may know.
Struggled cruelly with this topic, till I remembered this half-acoustic, half-electric, country-tinged ditty featuring some great lyrics.
18. Introductory song: Jon Spencer Blues Explosion – Wail – video
A fantastic strutting song from a rock band trying to pass for the blues. I’d love for Paul and the entire World’s Most Dangerous Band to shout out SOCK IT TO ME right before I bench-press Biff Henderson. The rest of the lyrics? Completely indecipherable.
(Side note: This is the song that nearly did your humble blogger in for this mix. Made numerous attempts to rip this song with terrible transfers and cropped endings galore. I fear it will haunt me for days.)
19. Amnesia: a song about forgetting: Clem Snide – Long Lost Twin
Another painfully underrated band fronted by the amazingly monikered Eef Barzelay. The band name Clem Snide comes from a recurring character in Wm. Burroughs novels. Features an unexpected downer ending, which kinda makes the whole thing even weirder than it already is.
20. Amnesty song: Superchunk – Late-Century Dream (from CD7’s category Perchance to Dream)
Another song to be played at my funeral. This actually opens the Superchunk CD it appears on, but I think it works really well as a closing track too.
Everybody lives in a knot
Everybody lives in a knot
Everybody’s trying to hold onto a dream
Even as they watch it rot
I’d like to thank you all for showing up, and I hope I passed the audition.