12.22.2005

7 Songs of Note

Jo Milkman has tagged me to write about 7 songs, so here it goes. I always find that writing about music is difficult for me. I'm not a musician, I can barely read music. I don't know how to differentiate beats, or even what the true definition of a "hook" is. I do know that Brian Wilson creates good "hooks." I do know what the Wall of Sound is, however. I'm one of those "I like it because it sounds good" people.

These seven songs are on my mind for some reason or another, and here are my thoughts, in no particular order:

Houseparty - The J. Geils Band: One of the best songs you could play at a party to get things going. The only problem is that few other songs can keep up the vibe. I'm happy that I can say I've seen this one performed live and it blew the roof off of Great Woods.

Big Love - Fleetwood Mac: Big Love is probably the antithesis of what Fleetwood Mac set out to do in 1968 as a hardcore British blues outfit. I'm not sure if there are any non-synthesized sounds in the track. The history of Fleetwood Mac fascinates me because of the direction the band has gone from 1968 to present. Mick Fleetwood and John McVie could have easily changed that name of their band as its members started leaving or going crazy in the early 70's or at the time of the arrival of Buckingham/Nicks (in 1975), but it is the name "Fleetwood Mac" that acts as a legacy and makes this weird Blues-Pop-AOR-Pop journey possible.

Perfect Situation - Weezer: It's just a good track with the right combination of lead vocals, background vocals and harmony that all play into one another. We Are All on Drugs off the same album is also excellent for the same reasons.

We Drink in the Pit Tonight - Robbie Roadsteamer: The man sings his heart out with as much bombast as possible. Yes, it's a dumb song, but boy, is it fun to listen to.

American Idiot - Green Day: It's amazing what god-awful, pretentious lyrics will do to a good tune. I like veiled commentary as much as a the next guy (see Bob Dylan, Bruce Springsteen, etc). This is more like transparent criticism. Is there anyone out there that hasn't gone through this progression: I like that new Green Day album, the tunes are pretty catchy.... That new Green Day album is alright, I'm getting tired of hearing it all the time... Green Day makes me want to stab my eardrums.

Thunder Road/Jungleland - Bruce Springsteen: One can't comment on Thunder Road without commenting on Jungeland. Thunder Road captures the essence of youth and the desire to break free from everything that's holding you back. The Boss paints an extremely vivid picture with his words. Jungleland, on the other hand, brings it all crashing down. I don't think there is any other album out there except Born to Run that has such perfect bookends.

Somebody Told Me - The Killers: Playing this song real loud must be the aural equivalent of jumpstarting a car. How can you not feel the energy that the Killers are trying to get across?

I link to a few people who have blogs and who have not completed this chain-blog, so here's who I would like to see write about music: Cousin Joseph, Girl with a Movie Camera (though she hasn't updated her blog in months), current Entertainment Weekly Editor-at-Large and former New York magazine film critic Ken Tucker (who I doubt reads this blog), Boston film guru David Kleiler, law student Megan Connor, and former North Dakotan Farrgghhorr.

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