I was listening to a Spotify Playlist Radio station this morning (Best of Rock: 2008) when my buddy called. The music pauses when I answer the phone and we chat for a while about this and that before he gets around to telling me that he and his wife are going on a vacation to Germany in early December. I'm excited for them; leaving their three boys - 18 months, 3 years and 7 - and 3 dogs home with an assortment of grandparents. I'm like, "Awesome! Sounds like fun!" Then he tells me the bad news: the flights were cheapest leaving on a Monday and he'll have to miss the Foals show at The Fillmore Minneapolis on Dec. 1. We've seen this band a number of times and they put on a great show, plus we have not yet seen The Fillmore (new + COVID 19). I'm disappointed, but wouldn't miss a child-less vacation to Europe over this one.
We hang up and the music restarts. 'Sound of Madness' by Shinedown comes to an end and the next song on shuffle ... 'Cassius' by Foals. I don't believe I knew they were even a band in '08, let alone heard this song. I don't know what (if anything) people call this experience*, like my phone is listening to me, but it was neat and sorta creepy at the same time.
*coincidence or serendipity come to mind ... I guess.
Anyway, thought I'd set something up here (despite Friday being more than half done) to share this music experience and a sampling of 10 songs from 'Best of Rock: 2008'
We have a well-traveled group hereabouts. How do you folks prepare a sonic journey for yourselves to accompany your travels outside your home range? (Context for travel matters and varies considerably, of course.)
Are bespoke playlists tailored to a purpose for your trip or the destination part of getting yourself excited & ready to travel? Or if you’re returning to a place you’ve visited before and that’s gotten under your skin, do you find your ear tuning itself to music you associate with that place ahead of your trip?
What do you bring with you to ensure you can enjoy your music while on the go?
During the pandemic, when I had lots of time by myself, I listened to a bunch of shoegaze bands. It just seemed like a good soundtrack to being sheltered at home and all the crap happening in the outside world. Of course most of that was the shoegaze classics like My Bloody Valentine, Swervedriver, Slowdive, Ride, etc...
One nice things about streaming services (I prefer Apple Music to Spotify, which itself is another FMD topic) is that they will offer up other albums based on what you are listening to and I've been introduced to a lot more shoegazey bands that I missed when they originally came out. Two such bands and albums are Chapterhouse's Whirlpool and Mercury Rev's Yerself is Steam, both of which came out in 1991 so kind of right when bands like Ride, MBV, etc were starting out.
Yerself is Steam is a lot more aggressive with screaming guitars and overall weirdness. It's an acquired taste but the opening song Chasing a Bee is 7 minutes of get your guitar freak on bliss.
Whirlpool is an album that I can't stop listening to. It would be what most would consider a "classic shoegaze album" with soaring guitars, pop sensibilities, and dreamy vocals. One can hear snippets of Smashing Pumpkins' Gish, Lush, Ride, Swervedriver, and there's one song that could easily fit into Sonic Youth's Daydream Nation album. Some of these bands aren't really influences as they postdate or are happening at literally the same time as Chapterhouse is recording. It's a wonder to me why this album isn't more well known and beloved.
Anyway if interested in this type of music, definitely check out these two albums, especially Whirlpool.
Do you have any other albums of a similar vein that I should be checking out?
Hey, gang, put in your picks. And drop a list while you're here.
Keeping with the theme this week, what are some notable songs you remember people by after they've passed? What do you want to be remembered by when you go?
Personally, I'd love a big brassy New Orleans jazz funeral.
And drop a list if you got one!
Today's video is the Rolling Stones - She's A Rainbow, which I "liked" on Spotify after enjoying the soundtrack on Cruella. The movie was enjoyable enough, but the soundtrack really stood out for me, with a groovy, 60's London rock vibe going, and some exposure to tracks and artists (Ike & Tina!) I'm glad to add to my listening.
What's a favorite soundtrack for you, or one that opened you up to some music you needed to be paying attention to?
And drop your lists.
Have a groovy Friday, folks.
I got nothing. My life these days consists of the 18 month-old demanding the Moana LP, then the Frozen LP, then the Moana LP...
I try to slip "Born to Run" or "Yankee Hotel Foxtrot" in on occasion, but usually no dice.
As a result I have capital "O" Opinions on Frozen's soundtrack. #1 of which is that Kristen Bell's singing voice is much nicer to listen to than Idina Menzel's.
Do you have any favorite radio station you stream?
I have a rotation of Casey Kasem's American Top 40 on iHeartRadio (I know Iknow, supporting the devil here)
KRPR out of Rochester. Its a public radio station that plays a pretty good blend of classic rock
1065 LakesFM out of Fairmont
KOWZ from Owatonaa
Or drop your list!
What are you listening to? Drop your lists!
Okay, gang, it's time to sign up for the Best of 2021 series. It will be first come first served. Just volunteer below and I will set up the schedule shortly. Also, it's been awhile since we all dropped a list, so let's do that too!