Friday, December 16, 2005

Hops' Celebrity Playlist

Today a co-worker asked me to make him a mix CD of some bands he might not be familiar with. Here is the track listing of the CD I made for him. It should give a decent idea about what my musical tastes are:

  1. “Wake Up” by Arcade Fire (Funeral) One day my kids will be jealous that I saw them at the 9:30 Club, that’s how good this band is.
  2. “Nowhere Again” by The Secret Machines (Now Here Is Nowhere) Originally from Texas these guys are an arty psychedelic rock band. They’re creating a sound that I just don’t hear from anyone else today.
  3. “Staring at the Sun” by TV on the Radio (Desperate Youths, Blood thirsty Babes) Cool and quirky.
  4. “Jesus Etc.” by Wilco (Yankee Hotel Foxtrot) This song was written before 9/11, but the lyrics always make me think of the Towers. The whole album meant a lot to me then, and still does today.
  5. “NYC” by Interpol (Turn on the Bright Lights) Yet another great New York City band. There are a bunch of bands out there who try to sound like them now, but these guys are still better.
  6. “Say Something New” by The Concretes (The Concretes): If this sounds familiar it’s because it got used on a Target commercial. For the record I owned the album before it was on the commercial. The band is from Sweden.
  7. 59th Street” by Amy Correia (Lakeville): She is a little known singer-songwriter but I love her voice. This is from her second and most recent album. Last summer I got to see her open for Josh Rouse in Annapolis, a dream show for me.
  8. “Directions” by Josh Rouse (Home): If I was forced to name my top 5 all-time artists this guy would have to be considered (along with Dylan, Springsteen, Wilco, Radiohead and a few others). I like him that much. His recent work is more in the vain of 70’s singer-songwriter pop (think Carol King), but this is still my favorite tune by him.
  9. “Penelope” by Pinback (Blue Screen Life): A poppy harmonic San Diego band. Their latest album is even better than this one. They also have a faux-metal side project called Goblin Cock with songs like The Revenge of Snufalufagus.
  10. “Free Salute” by Little Barrie (We Are Little Barrie): If I told you these guys played at Woodstock you’d believe me, they’re total throwbacks.
  11. “Bullet and a Target” by Citizen Cope (The Clarence Greenwood Recordings): This guy is incredible, part hip-hop, rock and folk. He was raised in the DC area and is based out of NYC now, but plays DC all the time. He’s one of those guys I can’t believe hasn’t gotten huge yet, though he did have a song in a Pontiac commercial recently. So he’s got that going for him.
  12. “From a Balance Beam” by Bright Eyes (Lifted Or The Story Is In The Soil, Keep Your Ear To The Ground): Bright Eyes is one guy from Omaha. He gained notoriety recently by touring with Springsteen, Fogerty and REM on the Vote For Change tour.
  13. “Devastation” by Matthew Ryan (Concussion): A singer songwriter that has slipped through the cracks. This is a duet with Lucinda Williams. I love the last line “devastation junkie”.
  14. “King’s Crossing” by Elliott Smith (From A Basement On The Hill): From an album that was released posthumously. Knowing how he died (he stabbed himself in the chest…..twice) makes the album fairly disturbing.
  15. “Banquet” by Bloc Party (Silent Alarm): A fun British band. The first time I heard them I realized I’d never heard a band quite like them before. They’re big in England these days.
  16. “The Rat” by The Walkmen (Bows + Arrows): An angry song from a band with DC roots.
  17. “Secret Meeting” by The National (Alligator): Uncut Magazine named Alligator as their favorite album of the year, I ranked it #2 behind My Morning Jacket’s masterpiece Z.
  18. “A Wolf At The Door” by Radiohead (Hail to the Thief): Radiohead is the best band on the planet. That’s a fact. This lyrics to this song “someone else is gonna come and clean it up, someone always does” is my AIM buddy icon.

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