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Full Albums:

  • Driver F, Chase the White Whale and Bury a Dream1
  • Jack Black, Blunderbuss2
  • Friendly Fires, Pala
  • Big K.R.I.T., 4ev Na Day3
Random Excellence:
  • Action Bronson, “Dance Song”
  • Big K.R.I.T., “Hometown Hero”
  • Brand New, “Sic Transit Gloria…Glory Fades”
  • Coheed & Cambria, “Feathers”
  • Fall Out Boy, “w.a.m.s.”
  • The Hold Steady, “Southtown Girls”
  • Isaac Hayes, “Hyperbolicsyllablecsesquedalymistic”4
  • Money Making Jam Boys, “Friday Night Street Fever”
  • New Found Glory, “Sincerely Me”
  • Nine Inch Nails, “The Good Soldier”
  • The Rolling Stones, “Slave”
  • The-Dream, “All Black Everything”
  • Them Crooked Vultures, “No One Loves Me & Neither Do I”5
  • Three 6 Mafia, “Hood Star”
  • The Wildbirds, “It’s Alright Now”
  • Wu-Tang Clan, “Bring Da Ruckus”
  • Wu-Tang Vs. The Beatles, “Clientele Kidd”

Songs of the Week:

  • Friendly Fires, “Blue Cassette”6
  • Ladyhawke, “Dusk ’til Dawn”
  • Nicki Minaj, “Moment 4 Life”
  • Driver Friendly, “Younce Creek”7
  • Holy Ghost!, “Do It Again”
  • Schoolboy Q, “There He Go”

Reviews:

1. Amazingly, each album is on both iTunes and Spotify–under different names. But I don’t care if they’re listed as F or Friendly, I’mma keep listening.

2. I feel like this is kind of heretical, but I’ve never been as big a Black fan as most of my friends. But he really does seem to get better as time goes on because this is a genuinely good album. Some of his stuff with the White Stripes was a little too ubiquitous for my taste, but he’s sort of hitting that pocket right now where all of his songs aren’t being beaten into my head by literally everyone around me and the riffs are bluesy as hell. It’s kind of ideal, and he’s growing on me.

3. Just way too short. Beats were underwhelming and the rhymes were standard. It felt like filler left over from awesome mixtapes.

4. This song has to be in the pantheon. Our kids are going to look back at all the songs that sampled it–let alone it’s originality and sheer genius–and then find out the dude who wrote it was also on South Park. Now, I probably haven’t even seen more than 20 episodes of that show, but I have to believe something about it is going to speak to future generations as a symbol of our time–and the chef did this song. All they have to do is dig deeper for one of the funkiest gifts Scientology had yet to steal from us.

5. This. Bridge. Not to juicehead out on you, but this came up while I was lifting (just some bullshit dumbbells, I’m not all that strong) weights and I was totally okay with accidentally hitting the “return to the beginning” button again and again and again with my dumbbells. It even came up again while on the stair master a week later and you best believe I mastered the crap right out of those stairs for the next five minutes.

6. All I want is more of it. It just grew on me so much since I last listened. It’s a phenomenal song about love lost that makes me want to dance and feel sorry at the same time. It’s just a single awesome part of an amazing album that still manages to stand out. Granted, “Show Me Lights” and “True Love” are better, but this song’s still amazing.

7. I put this on my “Social” playlist. There’s about a 90% chance everyone who listens to that playlist will hate it, but I threw it on there because it’s so good. I wanted to put on “Shark Cave” and “Messidona,” too, but I felt like this was the most accessible. Maybe there’s some poor kid out there who’ll hear this song, enjoy they jamz, look them up, and bathe in their awesome. Or maybe I’ll just annoy the shit out of everyone.

Comment:

I spent most of the last three weeks just listening to my “Social” playlist at work to get a feel for how it sounds to everyone else. I know I have a weird taste in music (omg, I’m, like, sewwww kewl and my mewsic is sewwwww eclectic) and I wanted to try to make this playlist a little more…social. For example, I played down (removed) the soft rock like Steve Winwood and blues guitarists like Kenny Wayne Shepherd or B.B. King in favor of contemporary rap artists and guaranteed bootyshakers like Homeboy Sandman, Schoolboy Q, and Nicki Minaj.

I also don’t get to complain about songs that are beaten into my head by everyone else and then beat all the hits into everyone else’s head (I removed all Kelly Clarkson hits a while ago, but the point still remains). It’s a refining process that’s long overdue, but also highly enjoyable because I’m up to 24 hours (376 tracks) of enjoyable music.

One of the harder things to let go of was the fact that all that music isn’t mirrored on my iPod. I’ve mimicked the Spotify playlist as best I can on my iTunes playlist, but there are some pretty serious gaps that I can only hope are made up for by rocking the pants off of all my friends at their convenience–and without my iPod.

Maybe that’s why I sucked so much at deciding on something to ask for for my birthday; I want so badly to hang out with friends and make them smile that I no longer know what I want. It used to be I needed a million CDs and to own all the books, but I haven’t been reading much since I read so much at work, watch so many shows at home, and listen to enough podcasts during my commute and free music on Spotify to not need to throw my money around.

But then again, sheltering myself within my “Social” playlist for the past three weeks has made me feel like there’s no new music. And watching the same stuff kind of makes me feel like I don’t know what’s really happening. Even catching up on my old magazines makes me realize just how ephemeral everything I’ve sunken myself into is. It’s the Internet; nothing lasts more than a day or two before it’s oolllllllddddd. We’ve all formed our opinion and moved on unless it’s genuinely awesome, in which case we clutch it to our bosoms until we’ve suffocated it.

So I guess all I really wanted for my birthday was to always have my friends around and never suffocate them. They can be the rudder, the Internet can be the sails, and I think I just want to be the galley cook–making sure they eat well and be merry.

You guys are great. Thank you.

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