Posts tagged “The Beatles

Top 5 Lists I Didn’t Get To Do On My Show

During my tenure at WMUC2 as the host of Listen Up!, I did 34 shows. Only two of them ended without a Top 5 list – three if you count the Top 20 Shortest Songs list, which I did as part of an experiment to see how many songs I could squeeze into two hours – and only one of those was because I didn’t have an idea for the week. The other was because my show was cut short by a Maryland baseball game.

Terrapins baseball: Interrupting my radio shows since 2009.

Of course, along with the 32 lists that made it to the airwaves, there were several list ideas that I never got to do. Most of the time it was because I had a hard time thinking of five songs with which to fill the list, which kind of defeats the purpose of the whole “Top 5” thing. But that’s what happens when you try to classify songs into excessively specific categories, especially because my brain isn’t quite the encyclopedia of music knowledge that I would have liked for it to be. It certainly would have made filling these lists a lot easier!

As always, the fun begins after the jump.

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BLAST FROM THE PAST #2: Be Here Now

I probably own the wrong Oasis album.

As far as I can tell the general consensus surrounding the Gallagher brothers and company is that they peaked early in their career. Definitely Maybe and (What’s The Story) Morning Glory? are remembered as classics of the mid-‘90s Britpop explosion. Many of the band’s most memorable songs – “Live Forever,” “Supersonic,” “Wonderwall,” “Champagne Supernova,” “Don’t Look Back In Anger,” and so on – can be found on those two albums. And while Oasis had to deal with the “Beatles rip-offs” criticism for much of their career, those two albums made them international superstars.

I have neither of those albums.

No, I have the album whose name has since become synonymous with artistic excess. I have the album that is now a case study in a band expanding their sound too far. I have the album where Oasis basically took everything they could get their hands on – including the kitchen sink – and squeezed all of it onto a single disc without anyone saying, “You know, maybe we should cut some of this stuff out.” I have the album that, despite selling eight million copies worldwide and being the fastest-selling album in U.K. history at the time and all the praise it garnered upon release, is now often remembered as the point where Oasis more or less jumped the shark. I have a copy of Be Here Now.

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America’s Favorite Cover Band Strikes Again

I am not a Gleek. Hell, if I didn’t follow pop culture, I wouldn’t even know what that word means. It sounds like a monster from The Legend of Zelda. It’s actually a self-appointed nickname among diehard Glee fans.

Now, I’m not about to go on some kind of rhetorical rampage all about how much the show sucks. I’ve never seen a single second of it, so it’s not like I’m qualified to judge its particular merits and flaws and whatnot. I am perfectly content to let its audience have their fun, even though I look at it and see what appears to be some kind of bastard lovechild of High School Musical and American Idol.

I mean, I remember browsing around in an FYE at the mall once and hearing someone not named Steve Perry – I could tell because the singer was female – singing “Don’t Stop Believin’” in an over-processed voice over what sounded like your garden variety karaoke machine backing track. I couldn’t think of any Disney stars who’d ever sung it. Nor could I name any recent Idol contestants who’d performed it. And then as I passed the soundtrack section it dawned on me… this was someone from the cast of Glee.

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Keep Your Baseball Cards — I’m Collecting Music

Look everyone! I’m still alive, and I haven’t completely forgotten about this blog!

Sorry I’ve gone an eternity or two (closer to two at this point) without updating anything. I’ve kind of been busy — papers to write, midterms to prepare for… you know, college stuff. As a result, I haven’t really been in the mood to write much lately. College would be so much better without all that crap, wouldn’t you agree? (And yes, I know that would completely defeat the purpose of college. This does not change the fact that midterms and essays suck ass.)

Anyway, my birthday was a few weeks ago and I turned — gulp — 23. (My youth is all but officially over and I don’t even feel like it’s started yet. Can I get a do-over on this whole “life” thing? No? Well, that sucks.) I got some presents — as of September 27, 2009, I officially became multi-instrumental when I got a bass guitar — and some money to spend. Which means it’s time for another Colin’s Collection post! Yay!

I dont know how to use Photoshop, so just pretend this is my face and COLIN FRATTURA replaces JIM CARREY and the tag line reads HOLY CRAP, THATS OLD.

I don't know how to use Photoshop, so just pretend this is my face and "COLIN FRATTURA" replaces "JIM CARREY" and the tag line reads "HOLY CRAP, THAT'S OLD."

All the albums I’ve recently added to my collection can be found after the jump. Check it out! THAT’S AN ORDER, DAMMIT!

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Sept. 25, 2009: Show #25

Hey everyone. I know I’ve really been slacking with the blog lately — not that anyone would notice, since I haven’t had a double-digit hit count since September 24 — but I just haven’t really felt like blogging for whatever reason. I’d like to say I had a better excuse than that for slacking off with this thing, but that’s just how it is.

Anyway, here’s the playlist from the 9/25/09 show. Hopefully one of these days I’ll actually write something more substantial than one of these playlist posts. That, however, would require me to stop being a lazy slacker.

1. Radiohead, “Bangers & Mash” (In Rainbows bonus disc)

2. TV On The Radio, “Golden Age” (Dear Science)

3. Arctic Monkeys, “Fake Tales Of San Francisco” (Whatever People Say I Am, That’s What I’m Not)

4. Cave In, “Lost In The Air” (Antenna)

5. Band Of Horses, “Is There A Ghost” (Cease To Begin)

6. RX Bandits, “Tainted Wheat” (…And The Battle Begun)

7. At The Drive-In, “A Devil Among The Tailors” (In/Casino/Out)

8. Kings Of Leon, “Notion” (Only By The Night)

9. Interpol, “Slow Hands” (Antics)

10. Deerhunter, “Saved By Old Times” (Microcastle)

11. The Clash, “Lost In The Supermarket” (London Calling)

12. British Sea Power, “Down On The Ground” (Do You Like Rock Music?)

13. Thrice, “As The Crow Flies” (The Alchemy Index: Vol. 3 — Air)

14. Foo Fighters, “Cold Day In The Sun” (In Your Honor)

15. Spoon, “Jonathon Fisk” (Kill The Moonlight)

16. My Morning Jacket, “Thank You Too!” (Evil Urges)

17. Minus The Bear, “When We Escape” (Planet Of Ice)

18. The National, “Secret Meeting” (Alligator)

19. R.E.M., “Near Wild Heaven” (Out Of Time)

20. Pavement, “Major Leagues” (Terror Twilight)

21. Radiohead, “Lucky” (OK Computer)

22. Red Hot Chili Peppers, “She’s Only 18” (Stadium Arcadium)

23. Muse, “Muscle Museum” (Showbiz)

24. Snow Patrol, “Shut Your Eyes” (Eyes Open)

25. Bloc Party, “Signs” (Intimacy)

26. Weezer, “El Scorcho” (Pinkerton)

27. The Beach Boys, “Wendy” (Endless Summer)

28. The Decemberists, “O Valencia!” (The Crane Wife)

29. Elvis Costello, “Veronica” (Spike)

30. The Beatles, “Maxwell’s Silver Hammer” (Abbey Road)


When Bad Songs Happen To Good Bands #4

I suppose it’s fitting that Pop is the album where U2 embraced irony the most, because it’s perhaps U2’s least popular album ever. I say “perhaps” because at least people might still be able to name a song from it. Quick — name a song from October. Any song from October. You have ten seconds and you’re not allowed to look at iTunes, Wikipedia, Amazon, or any other site that would give you the answers. Oh, and the title track doesn’t count.

Just how un-beloved is Pop? Even U2 themselves have all but abandoned this album. Only five of its 12 songs have been performed live since the PopMart Tour in 1997. They even stopped playing a few songs from Pop during the tour that was meant to promote it! The only Pop song they’ve played live in full since 2001 is “Discotheque.” And before they released All That You Can’t Leave Behind, the “comeback” album that “brought them back to their roots,” they said, “We’re reapplying for the position of best band in the world.” Translation: “Hey guys! Sorry Pop sucked so much! Our bad! Here, look, we’re going to stop all this wacky experimentation now! It’s okay to like us again!” Cue the opening chords of “Beautiful Day.”

Of course, when an experimental album contains the worst song of said band’s career, it’s easier to understand when people condemn them for stepping out of their comfort zone. That’s the kind of thing that happens… When Bad Songs Happen To Good Bands.

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Sept. 11, 2009: Show #23

I know what you’re thinking. “Hey, what the hell is this? Two 9/11 posts in a row? Wasn’t this blog supposed to be about music or something?” Well, don’t you worry your pretty little heads. This is a totally different kind of post relating to 9/11. I did my first show of the fall semester yesterday, and here’s the playlist…

1. Bloc Party, “The Marshals Are Dead” (Silent Alarm B-sides)

2. Cave In, “Come Into Your Own” (Tides Of Tomorrow EP)

3. Spoon, “The Way We Get By” (Kill The Moonlight)

4. Band Of Horses, “Weed Party” (Everything All The Time)

5. Pavement, “You Are A Light” (Terror Twilight)

6. Radiohead, “These Are My Twisted Words” (Wall Of Ice EP — just kidding, it’s a single)

7. Blur, “M.O.R.” (Blur)

8. Arctic Monkeys, “When The Sun Goes Down” (Whatever People Say I Am, That’s What I’m Not)

9. The Fall Of Troy, “I Just Got This Symphony Goin'” (Doppelganger)

10. Titus Andronicus, “My Time Outside The Womb” (The Airing Of Grievances)

11. Green Day, “Murder City” (21st Century Breakdown)

12. Minus The Bear, “Memphis & 53rd” (Menos El Oso)

13. My Morning Jacket, “What A Wonderful Man” (Z)

14. The National, “Available” (Sad Songs For Dirty Lovers)

15. RX Bandits, “One Million Miles An Hour, Fast Asleep” (…And The Battle Begun)

16. Dead Confederate, “Shadow The Walls” (Dead Confederate EP)

17. Queens Of The Stone Age, “Tangled Up In Plaid” (Lullabies To Paralyze)

18. Kings Of Leon, “Soft” (Aha Shake Heartbreak)

19. Radiohead, “Subterranean Homesick Alien” (OK Computer)

20. Nirvana, “Stay Away” (Nevermind)

21. British Sea Power, “Trip Out” (Do You Like Rock Music?)

22. White Rabbits, “Percussion Gun” (It’s Frightening)

23. Green Day, “21 Guns” (21st Century Breakdown)

24. Muse, “Uprising” (The Resistance)

25. Silversun Pickups, “Panic Switch” (Swoon)

26. Thom Yorke, “The Present Tense” (live @ Latitude Festival)

27. Grizzly Bear, “Two Weeks” (Veckatimest)

28. The Beatles, “Taxman” (Revolver) — played to fill dead air

Well, that covers it for my first show of my last semester here at the University of Maryland. As always, keep tuning in every Friday from 4-6 p.m. on WMUC2 and keep watching this space for more updates and fun stuff.


When Bad Songs Happen To Good Bands #3

About a year ago Bloc Party released their third studio album Intimacy as an online download for ten bucks. The download featured ten songs (“Talons” was added for the CD release, along with a bunch of bonus tracks), and since iTunes was still charging 99 cents a song at the time it seemed fair enough. (Plus, like I said, they’re one of my favorite bands.) In the months leading up to the online release of the new album, they’d put out a couple of heavily electronic singles. First there was “Flux,” which is a straight-up synth-driven dance song, and then there was “Mercury,” which turned out to be the lead single from Intimacy.

While “Mercury” took some time to get used to (as opposed to the instantly catchy “Flux,” which I think should have been the lead single instead), I found myself wondering if Bloc Party was about to release their Kid A — that is, an album where an established rock band suddenly shifts gears and explores electronica. Their change in sound between Silent Alarm and A Weekend In The City, while perhaps not the most popular of decisions, at the very least showed that they were a band who were willing to try new things and didn’t want to make the same album twice. So when the download became available, I snatched it up and decided to give it a listen.

Three minutes later, I found myself hoping I hadn’t made a big mistake. I had been greeted with a song so violently chaotic, so disorienting and confusing, that perhaps it makes sense that it was named for the Greek god of war. And no, I don’t mean this guy…

Dont mess with Kratos. He knows more ways to kill you than probably exist.

Don't mess with Kratos. Dude is so badass that he can kill you in ways you didn't even know existed.

Bloc Party’s “Ares” is just another example of what happens… When Bad Songs Happen To Good Bands.

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May 15, 2009: Show #22

Here it is, folks… the last of my playlists from the 2008-09 school year. An emotional moment, I know. But I plan to be back for the Fall ’09 semester, having submitted my returning DJ application today. So far I’m thinking my biggest issue will be thinking up ideas for new Top 5 lists. If you’ve got any ideas for lists, I’m all ears. Check the Top 5 page on this site so you’ll know which lists I’ve already done — I’d rather not repeat myself, after all.

Anyway, here’s the playlist from May 15, 2009.

1. Mastodon, “Quintessence” (Crack The Skye)

2. Intronaut, “Australopithecus” (Prehistoricisms)

3. Slayer, “Dissident Aggressor” (South Of Heaven)

4. Metallica, “Escape” (Ride The Lightning)

5. Baroness, “O’Appalachia” (Red Album)

6. Between The Buried And Me, “Prequel To The Sequel” (Colors)

7. High On Fire, “Fury Whip” (Death Is This Communion)

8. The Sword, “March Of The Lor” (Age Of Winters)

9. At The Drive-In, “Mannequin Republic” (Relationship Of Command)

10. Green Day, “Peacemaker” (21st Century Breakdown)

11. Queens Of The Stone Age, “Auto Pilot” (Rated R)

12. Radiohead, “Where I End And You Begin (The Sky Is Falling In)” (Hail To The Thief)

13. My Morning Jacket, “Two Halves” (Evil Urges)

14. Minus The Bear, “Fulfill The Dream” (Menos El Oso)

15. Interpol, “Next Exit” (Antics)

16. Pavement, “Starlings Of The Slipstream” (Brighten The Corners)

17. Foo Fighters, “Miracle” (In Your Honor)

18. Kings Of Leon, “Revelry” (Only By The Night)

19. Blur, “No Distance Left To Run” (13)

20. The National, “Racing Like A Pro” (Boxer)

21. Weezer, “The Good Life” (Pinkerton)

22. Bloc Party, “Rhododendrons” (“Hunting For Witches” single)

23. Nirvana, “You Know You’re Right” (Nirvana)

24. The Beatles, “Eleanor Rigby” (Revolver)

25. Radiohead, “No Surprises” (OK Computer)

Well, that covers it for all the playlist posts. Be sure to watch this space for updates about next semester’s show times, and also for all the Internet-only content.


When Bad Songs Happen To Good Bands #1

“You see, I think drugs have done some good for us. I really do. And if you don’t believe drugs have done good things for us, do me a favor. Go home tonight. Take all your albums, all your tapes, and all your CDs and burn them. Because you know what? The musicians that made all that great music that’s enhanced your lives throughout the years were real fucking high on drugs. The Beatles were so fucking high they let Ringo sing a few tunes.”

— Bill Hicks

Mr. Hicks had a point, you know. Some of the greatest music ever made was created by people who were stoned out of their minds. You name it, musicians have smoked or injected it. Hell, Keith Richards alone has probably singlehandedly sustained a few Third World economies. If he gets cremated when (if?) he dies, his ashes would probably give you the most incredible buzz in the history of mankind.

But of course musicians are only human. Not every song they create is going to be a classic. Even the greatest musicial minds are prone to churning out some clunkers. Nobody’s immune to failure. And no matter how high you get, a lousy song is just a lousy song.

This is what happens… When Bad Songs Happen To Good Bands.

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