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Middle Aged Dummies!! Artists #1's have been posted!! (1 Viewer)

The Decemberists
#24 Don't Carry It All


This is the first song from 2011's The King is Dead (described by Pitchfork as "a breezy country-folk record with no discernable narrative"; keep in mind this release followed The Hazards of Love which, well, we'll get to that later :) ).

there's an interesting tension between the inherent unpretentiousness of country music-- it's rural, it's populist, it's based in universal emotions-- and the Decemberists' literary cartwheeling

So raise a glass to turnings of the season
And watch it as it arcs towards the sun
And you must bear your neighbors burden within reason
And your labors will be borne when all is done, and nobody nobody knows
Let the yoke fall from our shoulders
Don't carry it all don't carry it all
We are all our hands in holders
Beneath this bold and brilliant sun
 
24. Ray Charles - I've Got A Woman aka I Got a Woman - Spotify

Ray co-wrote this song with Renald Richard in 1954. Renald was Ray's first band leader, and he played the trumpet. He died just two years ago at age 96. "I've Got A Woman" was a single in 1954, and was Ray's first #1 hit. The song was put on his debut album Ray Charles in 1957. He said this was his first song where he was 100% himself, and it was also the first song that didn't sit well with the church. Ray took the sanctified sound, merged it with blues and jazz, and added some secular lyrics to it that were perceived as suggestive/sexual. Not only was he heavily criticized by the church, even some blues artists wagged their finger at him. One bluesman said Ray was "mixing the sacred with the profane." Ray didn't care, and said they'd just have to criticize him, because he was going to sing the way he sings, and he wasn't going to change.

Ray's "What'd I Say" put the certified stamp on the genre of Soul, but "I've Got a Woman," which was written about 5 years prior, was the template. Ray said that later on after doing "I've Got A Woman" other artists would start doing what he was doing, and it would become known as Soul. He would add, "It just goes to show you, I guess I was a little ahead of my time or something."
 
Foo FightersJust Win BabyLearn To Fly

This is the second song I chose from There Is Nothing Left To Lose, the Foos' third studio album. This song was the first Foos song to make the Billboard top 100 chart. Its music video, which is a parody of the movie Airplane, won the Grammy for Best Short Form Video in 2001.

Grohl has said the song is about the search for some sort of inspiration, the search for signs of life that will make you feel alive, and you hear that in the chorus lyrics:

I'm lookin' to the sky to save me
Lookin' for a sign of life
Lookin' for somethin' to help me burn out bright
And I'm lookin' for a complication
Lookin' cause I'm tired of lyin'
Make my way back home when I learn to fly high

In 2020, Kerrang ranked the top 20 all-time Foo Fighters songs and ranked Learn To Fly #11.

Arguably the Foo Fighters’ most melodic, easygoing, radio-friendly single... emerged from a place of uncertainty from the band who were in the process of trying to replace guitarist Franz Stahl while also trying out drummer Taylor Hawkins on record for the first time. Although Dave has said that the song is actually one of his least favourite on the LP, its inspirational depiction of a band ‘looking for a sign of life’ and that hilarious, hallucinogen-laced music video (featuring an early cameo from Tenacious D) saw Learn To Fly carry Foo Fighters to delirious new heights.

In 2023, Consequence of Sound ranked what they characterized as all 156 Foo Fighters songs up to that point, ranking Learn To Fly #6. Here is an excerpt from their writeup:

If not every last one of the band’s songs furthers their myth of being modern-day rock superheroes, this one certainly does. When the Foo Fighters are long gone, this is the type of song that will cause an aging superfan to go all Han Solo when remembering their favorite musical act: “It’s true. All of it.” And as evidence, they need do nothing except direct the next generation of music lovers to that Rockin’ 1000 video.

Around 2019 (2014 article was updated "4 years ago"), Spin ranked what they characterized as all 152 Foo Fighters songs up to that point, ranking Learn To Fly #10. Here is their writeup:

Chill. Catchy. Fun. Not too hard, not too soft. Amusing music video. All in all, it’s peak ’90s Foo Fighters. Whenever you hear it, you probably know way more words than you thought you did.

That Kerrang writeup makes reference to this very cool video. From Wikipedia:

On July 30, 2015, a video was published on YouTube of 1,000 Italian musicians in Cesena, Italy all playing and singing the song in unison, followed by a plea for the Foo Fighters to come play a concert in Cesena. Dave Grohl responded, in Italian, thanking the makers for "the beautiful video" and adding "Thank you so much. We're coming, I swear. We'll see each other soon." On November 3, 2015, in response, Foo Fighters performed a twenty-seven-song concert in Cesena for approximately 3,000 people, starting their set with "Learn to Fly".

Here is a clip of Dave talking about that experience.

👍
 
@Eephus I was supposed to see the band X and the Squirrel Nut Zippers with some friends in Charlotte Saturday, and we got a postponed message today. It said they had to postpone the show due to an emergency medical procedure with a band member of X. It didn't say which band member, but I was just passing it on cause I know your wife is friends with Exene.

Thanks for posting this. Mrs. E got her shingles shot on Tuesday and has been semi-conscious so this was news to her..
I had my shingles shot(s) last year (aren't there a series of them or is that one of the other 12,000 shots I've gotten in the last 3 years?). They didn't knock me back too much, other than the 18-foot needle they use. I thought I was in a jousting tournament. I hope Mrs E feels better soon.
The shingles vaccine is a two dose series, 2-6 months apart. And it knocks a lot of people on their butts—definitely more so than the COVID vaccine for most.

I had my first dose last month and the side effects were far worse than any of my 4 or 5 COVID vaccines I’ve had.
IIRC, the 2nd COVID shot kicked my *** worse than any of the shingles shots. But I could well be misremembering and confusing them. I DO remember the needle as being a bad mofo for the shingles shots, though. My arm hurt for a week.
That was my experience too.
 
#24 "Blowing In The Wind"

My ears are wrecked, but every mix I've ever heard of this is awful. Motown apparently decided to turn every knob to 11 when they recorded it. It also seems like some of the band is playing in one key and some in another, and at different speeds. Some are bashing away like proto-Ramones and some seem to be trying to make it a slow blues. The recording is a damned mess. However....

Stevie Wonder was 15 or 16 years old when this was released. He absolutely SMOKES Dylan's version by the vocal performance alone. He was a kid and "got" it better than the guy who originated it.

Sodium pentothal in my veins, this wouldn't be close to a "Top 31" for Stevie Wonder if I were forced to rank his records. But I think it's a really important one in his discography and that's why I included it.
 
Just returned from my trip to the SF area and have some catching up to do. But here’s a bit about my song today that I typed up on the plane with some context on Brazil music in the mid-1960s…

Agora Ninguem Chora Mais is the earliest song by Jorge Ben to appear on my list so far, from his 1965 Big Ben album (but I will have some earlier songs of his from his debut album coming up later). It marked a turning point for Jorge Ben.

As I mentioned earlier, he started off his career in bossa nova before basically inventing samba rock. Brazil had some culture wars going on at this time between the traditional bossa nova sounds and more rock sounds. “Jovem Guarda” represented the rock sounds, also known in Brazil as “iê-iê-iê” music, getting its name from the “yeah yeah yeahs” in The Beatles’ “She Loves You.” (A Hard Day’s Night was sold in Brazil under the name “Os Reis Do Ié, Ié, Ié!” = “The Kings of the Yeah, Yeah, Yeahs!”)

Jorge Ben was able to straddle the lines up until this point: while the song still has some of the traditional sounds of bossa nova with the heavy piano, Jorge Ben’s guitar here apparently sounded too much like rock and/or roll. After he played this song live on the “Jovem Guarda” show, he was banned by the producers of the big bossa nova TV show in Brazil. He also got dropped by his label (Philips).

He obviously did fine for himself — getting dropped by the label allowed him to break free from bossa nova and develop his individual sound even more. And Philips took him back a few years later after realizing their mistake.
 
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24. Grind (off Alice In Chains, 1995)

Sure to play a part, so you love the game
And in truth your lies become one and same, yeah
I could set you free, rather hear the sound
Of your body breaking as I take you down, yeah


(Official Video) Alice In Chains - Grind
(live version) Alice in Chains - Grind - Live 2014

AIC didn’t tour for this album (feeding some of the rumors mentioned below). So this song wasn’t performed live until around 2010, and thus that’s DuVall instead of Layne in the live version. Just as a heads-up, I suppose.

A(nother) strong opening hook. A driving beat. Strong vocals. Looking in hindsight I wonder if Grind deserved better, but on a calculating level, this is where it fell. Anyway, this song is about the rumors swirling around the band from the media at the time. Everything from the band breaking up to Staley having lost fingers (if not more). It's about living (and dying) with no regrets. It was probably always planned to be a single, but became the first one released of the album when an early cut was leaked.

Next on the countdown, something with a touch of familiarity.
 
Foo FightersJust Win BabyLearn To Fly

Love this song.

I pretty much missed the boat on this band, but I have a great memory attached to this song: the day I was told we got the house we wanted, I was so excited I piled my kids (5, 4 and 1) into our minivan and drove out to show them the house. Learn to Fly came on the radio, I turned it up and belted it out. At one point, I looked in the rearview mirror and saw my 4 year-old rocking out along with me. He was sort of bouncing his head from side to side like that kid in the Peanuts Christmas show.
 
#24 "Blowing In The Wind"

My ears are wrecked, but every mix I've ever heard of this is awful. Motown apparently decided to turn every knob to 11 when they recorded it. It also seems like some of the band is playing in one key and some in another, and at different speeds. Some are bashing away like proto-Ramones and some seem to be trying to make it a slow blues. The recording is a damned mess. However....

Stevie Wonder was 15 or 16 years old when this was released. He absolutely SMOKES Dylan's version by the vocal performance alone. He was a kid and "got" it better than the guy who originated it.

Sodium pentothal in my veins, this wouldn't be close to a "Top 31" for Stevie Wonder if I were forced to rank his records. But I think it's a really important one in his discography and that's why I included it.
Stevie's voice didn't change that much from a teen to adulthood. I've never heard this version. It's good.
 
24. Ray Charles - I've Got A Woman aka I Got a Woman - Spotify

Ray co-wrote this song with Renald Richard in 1954. Renald was Ray's first band leader, and he played the trumpet. He died just two years ago at age 96. "I've Got A Woman" was a single in 1954, and was Ray's first #1 hit. The song was put on his debut album Ray Charles in 1957. He said this was his first song where he was 100% himself, and it was also the first song that didn't sit well with the church. Ray took the sanctified sound, merged it with blues and jazz, and added some secular lyrics to it that were perceived as suggestive/sexual. Not only was he heavily criticized by the church, even some blues artists wagged their finger at him. One bluesman said Ray was "mixing the sacred with the profane." Ray didn't care, and said they'd just have to criticize him, because he was going to sing the way he sings, and he wasn't going to change.

Ray's "What'd I Say" put the certified stamp on the genre of Soul, but "I've Got a Woman," which was written about 5 years prior, was the template. Ray said that later on after doing "I've Got A Woman" other artists would start doing what he was doing, and it would become known as Soul. He would add, "It just goes to show you, I guess I was a little ahead of my time or something."
I think the blues artists were more frightened than the churchers by this record. Because they knew you weren't supposed to cross the line and a backlash was coming. Sam Cooke had to change his name to record a ditty like "You Send Me" (granted, he just changed his first name to Dale and didn't really GAF anyway, but still...)

If there's one record that was an atomic bomb in Western music, it's this one. That's not hyperbole, either. More than "Maybellene" or Elvis' version of "That's Alright Mama", THIS is the record that changed how young folks on both sides of the Atlantic thought music should sound like.
 
If there's one record that was an atomic bomb in Western music, it's this one. That's not hyperbole, either. More than "Maybellene" or Elvis' version of "That's Alright Mama", THIS is the record that changed how young folks on both sides of the Atlantic thought music should sound like.
Speaking of Elvis, your boy Billy Joel once said, "This may sound like sacrilege, but I think Ray Charles was more important than Elvis Presley."
 
If there's one record that was an atomic bomb in Western music, it's this one. That's not hyperbole, either. More than "Maybellene" or Elvis' version of "That's Alright Mama", THIS is the record that changed how young folks on both sides of the Atlantic thought music should sound like.
Speaking of Elvis, your boy Billy Joel once said, "This may sound like sacrilege, but I think Ray Charles was more important than Elvis Presley."
Keyboard player bias 😉
 
#24 A Rock n’ Roll Fantasy (1978 - Misfits)

Lyrics in this one were motivated by the impending departure of group members…bassist Andy Pyle and keyboardist John Gosling…who wished to leave the group after completion of the Misfits album. Additionally, Mick Avory was considering leaving, and even Dave was questioning whether to continue. In the lyrics Ray contemplates the future of the group. Hoping it isn’t the end, Ray expresses the desire to keep going. Ray is trying to convince Dave that their music is still meaningful and “Dan the fan” is dependent on it. Well, clearly they decided to keep the party going for a while longer…glad they did! Also included here is a tip of the cap to Elvis who had recently passed (The king is dead, rock is done…) and was part of the inspiration behind this song. This was the first single released from the Misfits album and it did quite well climbing to #30 on the Billboard Hot 100, the highest rank since Lola in 1970.

Hello you, hello me, hello people we used to be
Isn’t it strange, we never changed
We’ve been through it all yet we’re still the same
And I know it’s a miracle, we still go, and for all we know
We might still have a way to go

Hello me, hello you, you say you want out
Want to start anew, throw in your hand
Break up the band, start a new life, be a new man
But for all we know, we might still have a way to go
Before you go, there’s something you ought to know

There’s a guy in my block, he lives for rock
He plays records day and night
And when he feels down, he puts some rock ’n’ roll on
And it makes him feel alright
And when he feels the world is closing in
He turns his stereo way up high

He just spends his life, living in a rock ’n’ roll fantasy
He just spends his life, living on the edge of reality
He just spends his life, in a rock ’n’ roll fantasy
He just spends his life, living in a rock ’n’ roll fantasy
He just spends his life, living on the edge of reality
He just spends his life, in a rock ’n’ roll fantasy
He just spends his life, living in a rock ’n’ roll fantasy

Look at me, look at you
You say you’ve got nothing left to prove
The king is dead, rock is done
You might be through but I’ve just begun
I don’t know, I feel free and I won’t let go
Before you go, there’s something you ought to know

Dan is a fan and he lives for our music
It’s the only thing that gets him by
He’s watched us grow and he’s seen all our shows
He’s seen us low and he’s seen us high
Oh, but you and me keep thinking
That the world’s just passing us by

Don't’ want to spend my life, living in a rock ’n’ roll fantasy
Don’t want to spend my life living on the edge of reality
Don’t want to waste my life, hiding away anymore
Don’t want to spend my life living in a rock ’n’ roll fantasy...
 
If there's one record that was an atomic bomb in Western music, it's this one. That's not hyperbole, either. More than "Maybellene" or Elvis' version of "That's Alright Mama", THIS is the record that changed how young folks on both sides of the Atlantic thought music should sound like.
Speaking of Elvis, your boy Billy Joel once said, "This may sound like sacrilege, but I think Ray Charles was more important than Elvis Presley."
You're killing me here, simey.

Musically, I think that no-talent hack from Long Island is absolutely right. Elvis had the image and got marketed in the right way. And he was talented in his own right. But Ray Charles was a level up and the most influential musician on Boomer rock.
 
If there's one record that was an atomic bomb in Western music, it's this one. That's not hyperbole, either. More than "Maybellene" or Elvis' version of "That's Alright Mama", THIS is the record that changed how young folks on both sides of the Atlantic thought music should sound like.
Speaking of Elvis, your boy Billy Joel once said, "This may sound like sacrilege, but I think Ray Charles was more important than Elvis Presley."
You're killing me here, simey.

Musically, I think that no-talent hack from Long Island is absolutely right. Elvis had the image and got marketed in the right way. And he was talented in his own right. But Ray Charles was a level up and the most influential musician on Boomer rock.
Elvis certainly had a cleaner image, and his pill use was not out in the open. Ray was arrested a few times for his drug use, and he had 12 children by 10 different women. He may have been blind, but he had a helluva good time. 🥳
 
My take on the 25s! Loved this playlist I think the most so far. Might not have had as many added to my new-to-me favorites (11!), but those I did add I felt particularly strongly about. Plus, Stevie Wonder covering the Beatles.

Not making my playlist but very happy I heard them: "Mainstream Kid" by Brandi Carlile (rockin'!); "Rotten Apple" by Alice in Chains; "Crabsody in Blue" by AC/DC; "Best of You" by Foo Fighters; and "Narayan" by The Prodigy (my favorite so far).

Making my playlist:

- "Carolina, Carol Bela" by Jorge Ben Jor - Might be my favorite from him yet, and for me it was because of not despite the tortured Muppet sound. No matter what any of your dogs say.
- "Make You Better" by The Decemb(e)rists - I've added several of their songs to my playlist, but this is the first one that totally made me swoon. Part of a three-way tie for my gold medal today.
- "The Doomsday Book" by ... (thanks, simey)
- "Vegas" by Big Thief
- "exile" by Taylor Swift and Bon Iver - welcome to my playlist, Ms. Swift. It didn't hurt that she had a favorite of mine join her. Swoon x2, second gold medal of the day.
- "Forget the Swan" by Dinosaur Jr.
- "Blackout Sam" by The Hold Steady - see my note on The Decemberists. Gold medal #3. Does the beginning vocal of this sound like a mash-up of the Randy Newman and "A Whiter Shade of Pale"? No, just me? Works for me in any case.
- "Charmless Man" by Blur - would have won a gold most days.
- "Come Rain or Come Shine" by Ray Charles - not actually new to me because I listened to it as a test for simey a few weeks ago, but close enough. Devastatingly beautiful.
- "The Way We Get By" by Spoon
- "Of Lilies and Remains" by Bauhaus - favorite from them so far, and also could have won a gold on other, less competitive days.

Special Shout-Out: I've alluded to this earlier, but as a Rush agnostic, I've been blown away by how well I've liked the songs selected, most of which I'd never heard before. Not quite a convert yet, but I'm surprisingly intrigued and eager to see where that playlist goes!

ALL CAUGHT UP! :pickle:
 
24. (I've Been) Searchin' So Long
Album: Chicago VII (1974)
Writer: James Pankow
Lead vocals: Peter Cetera
Released as a single? Yes (US #9)

This one is a slow burn. Keep telling yourself: "wait for it ... wait for it ... wait for it." Like Wishing You Were Here from the same album, this ballad is clearly influenced by the Beach Boys, and Cash Box compared it to Yes (it's definitely not prog, though). I can also see a scenario where the Bee Gees record it. Lushly arranged with strings (arranged by composer Jimmie Haskell), horns and electric piano, the song gracefully glides along for three minutes and then kicks things up a notch. The real good stuff begins at 3:15, where the tempo picks up and the vocals gain soul and urgency, with Peter Cetera deploying his "gritty Paul McCartney" voice at times. At 4:00 we get the triumphant Terry Kath guitar solo, but it's brief and not mixed any higher than the horns and strings. This is music that makes you feel.
The lyrics were designed that way as well. James Pankow: "'(I've Been) Searchin' So Long' was a song about finding myself. I was starting to figure out what I was put on this earth for. I don't think anybody in the band had written a song about the quest to meet that person inside and find out what he was all about, what his ideals were. I just had to talk about who I was and what I was feeling at the time. I felt after it was recorded that maybe other people could relate to that, 'cause the '70s was a time for soul-searching, it was a time for discovery, and I think that song was probably indicative of what a lot of young people were feeling at that time."'
… Searching (don't you know I'm)
For an answer
To the question
Oh yeah
"Who am I?"
Maybe (maybe it's true)
It's only natural (it's only natural baby, yeah)
Good things
In life
Take a long time (yeah yeah)

While some ballads don't translate well to the stage, this one always has because of its dynamics and how its ending can serve as a launching point into something else, often the salsa instrumental Mongonucleosis that follows it on Chicago VII. In fact, that pair is appearing in the band's setlists this year.
Live version from 1977 by itself: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cIESk4Dwrng
Live version from 1977 with Mongonucleosis: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Awmhz7SqsTY
Leonid and Friends version (with orchestra): https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XEDatFQ3m98

At #23: I'm inconsistent with how I handle the multi-part suites, so in this case, while the entire suite doesn't hold together well enough to be included in total, two consecutive sections from it are powerful enough to land in my top 31.
 
Just returned from my trip to the SF area and have some catching up to do

You got to see a great game








...unless you're a Padres fan
That was a great one. Nats fan — Did have a Juan Soto “Here comes the bloom” shirt on because I bought it about one month before they traded him, and needed an occasion to wear it. Did come home with a Giants ball cap though.

Great ballpark. My son enjoyed the slide; had to leave just before the excitement in the 8th inning though because that was around when he was showing signs of being over-tired.
 
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My spoon 24:


Please give it a chance to get going - it takes a minute or so to get going ( and I know some have the 2 minute rule). :bye:

I used to skip this song on that "Hot Thoughts" album because there was so much else I loved, but it has moved the title track out of my top 31.
Love this song - excellent choice.
 
- "Carolina, Carol Bela" by Jorge Ben Jor - Might be my favorite from him yet, and for me it was because of not despite the tortured Muppet sound. No matter what any of your dogs say.
- "Make You Better" by The Decemb(e)rists - I've added several of their songs to my playlist, but this is the first one that totally made me swoon. Part of a three-way tie for my gold medal today.
- "The Doomsday Book" by ... (thanks, simey)
- "Vegas" by Big Thief
- "exile" by Taylor Swift and Bon Iver - welcome to my playlist, Ms. Swift. It didn't hurt that she had a favorite of mine join her. Swoon x2, second gold medal of the day.
- "Forget the Swan" by Dinosaur Jr.
- "Blackout Sam" by The Hold Steady - see my note on The Decemberists. Gold medal #3. Does the beginning vocal of this sound like a mash-up of the Randy Newman and "A Whiter Shade of Pale"? No, just me? Works for me in any case.
- "Charmless Man" by Blur - would have won a gold most days.
- "Come Rain or Come Shine" by Ray Charles - not actually new to me because I listened to it as a test for simey a few weeks ago, but close enough. Devastatingly beautiful.
- "The Way We Get By" by Spoon
- "Of Lilies and Remains" by Bauhaus - favorite from them so far, and also could have won a gold on other, less competitive days.

I forgot to mention that one of these had a saxophone used to excellent effect in it, but now I don't remember...was it the Spoon song?
 
I realized I hadn't gotten to my #25 adds and shout outs. Even not mentioning the 10-15 bands I highlighted the other day, there is still a ton of good stuff that I added.

Mainstream Kid - yeah, this ****in' rocked.
Skeleton Man - see above. I think I added another from Black and forgot to mention it.
I'm Going Slightly Mad - loving the new wave Queen here. A different direction than I've ever heard them, but still showcases Freddie and gang's talents nicely.
Charmless Man - there have been a couple from Eephus that have been right on the edge for me, and I'm confident more will be added later.
Ballad of a Well-Known Gun - another that I forgot to mention before, as I loved another Elton song earlier :shock: and added to the playlist. Love The Band feel on this one, and it reeled me in right away.

Special shoutout to She - one some days that is my favorite Green Day song, and definitely my favorite off Dookie.
 
#24 Landslide (Flick of the Switch)

I hadn’t listened to this album much in the last 20 years and was surprised, in a positive way, by a few of the tunes. This song was a standout and the more I listened the worse I felt about not having it in my rotation. Has a great riff through its entirety and Brian’s vocal is top notch. I don’t have a ton of post Back-in-Black tunes here but this one is deserving.

Album breakdown
0 74 Jailbreak
2 High Voltage
0 Dirty Deeds Done Dirt Cheap
2 Let There Be Rock
1 PowerAge
0 Highway To Hell
1 Back in Black
1 For Those About To Rock (We Salute You)
1 Flick of the Switch
0 Fly On The Wall
0 Who Made Who
0 Blow Up Your Video
0 The Razor’s Edge
0 BallBreaker
0 Stiff Upper Lip
0 Black Ice
0 Rock or Bust
0 Power Up
 
24.
The White Lady Loves You More- Elliott Smith
from his Self Titled Album


"Keep your things in a place meant to hide
But I know they're there somewhere
And I know that's where you'll go tonight
I'll be thrown over just like before
The white lady loves you more
Need a metal man just to pick up your

a long time since you cared enough for me to even be discrete
I know what this metal is for
The white lady loves you more"

The White Lady Loves You More
is an embodiment of the cold, hollow embrace of heroin and the hopelessly wishful thinking of dependency towards it, told through brilliant metaphors. This one is a waltz (he has several songs in 3/4 time)that really showcases great lyrics and a beautiful melody. This song also showcases the use of doubling on vocals and guitars which I love. Overall just a beautifully constructed tune.
 
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24 Sigur Ros - Untitled #4 (Njósnavélin) (The Spy Machine)

First track we're hearing off of Sigur Ros' third album (), all of the songs on this album are untitled but all have unofficial names.

This, along with two tracks from their previous album, is the first Sigur Ros track to ever be used in popular media. It was featured in the film Vanilla Sky. The band allowed the song to be used in the film because they thought it would be funny to see Tom Cruise act over their music. It was also used in an episode of Orphan Black. As such, this song is a lot of peoples' first introduction to the band. I also think this was used by someone in another recent draft here.

I definitely have this ranked higher than 24th but this one got moved around to make the playlist flow better.

This is another that is sung 100% in Vonlenska/Hopelandic so no lyrics.
 
Random thoughts on some of the #24s that I know:

Todd didn't do a whole lot of out-and-out rocking after he left Nazz, but Little Red Lights, which closes side 3, the "heavy" side, of Something/Anything?, is an exception. His blistering guitar playing evokes the sounds and rush of driving real fast (and, eventually, being chased by the cops). I picked this for the Road Trip playlist in GP4.
Voices in My Head is another Police track that shows off how innovative they were rhythmically. The entire Zenyatta Mondatta album does, basically.
The Knife is a top 5 Genesis song for me. As I said, most of the Trespass album is ornate and grandiose, and its closer is that, but it also packs a harder edge that anything else they ever did. Teenage me was all kinds of :eek: when I heard it for the first time. My friend and I yelled for it throughout much of the 1987 show we saw, knowing they would never actually play it.
A Rock 'N Roll Fantasy has such great descriptions in it -- Ray's lyrics were still top-notch well into his career. The backstory makes it even more compelling.
Similarly, Lakeside Park has some of Neil Peart's best lyrics -- they evoke deep human emotions despite appearing during a period where he was mostly writing fantasy and philosophical material. There is now a memorial honoring him at the real Lakeside Park.
I've never paid attention to whether the music of Stevie's version of Blowin' in the Wind is any good -- his vocal demands all your attention.
For those of you who skip Phish because you hate Trey Anastasio's vocals, Halfway to the Moon (like Wading in the Velvet Sea) is sung by Page McConnell. It's one of my favorites among their post-reunion songs (they disbanded between 2004 and 2008).
Much of ELO's Out of the Blue album sounds a lot like the Beatles, and Standin' in the Rain is no exception.
I've always loved how the growliness of the vocals and the guitar sounds on AIC's Grind* kind of match each other.
WEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEE are the CHAMPYUNS, my FRENNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNND, and WEEEEEEEEEEL keep on FIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIITING til the END!
You can't help but bop along to Learn to Fly. It's one of the greatest hooks you'll ever hear.

* - Phish also has a song called Grind. It's a barbershop quartet kind of thing.
 
#24 Genesis - The Knife

Album - Trespass
Year - 1970

We get back to our second song from Trespass. As Pip mentioned a while back, this was the bands first “real” album and they did a bunch of experimenting throughout the album.

I love this song because it has such a different darker / harder feel to it (TWSS). It still has the trademark theatrical Genesis moments with varying sections throughout, but has much more menace to it than they have in most of their other work. It also has some great guitar work about 5-6 minutes into it that I love.
I forgot that I included this in my 1971 countdown (it qualified there on a loophole). What I said:

14. The Knife -- Genesis (released as a single)

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lcr3cnw4r4w

It's probably cheating to list a song that qualifies only because of a single no one other than a few die-hards in England bought, but it had a profound effect on me when I first heard it as a teenager.

The Knife is the closer to 1970's Trespass, Genesis' second album and the first on which they had artistic control, and which was recorded before Phil Collins and Steve Hackett joined the band. But it was released as a single (first half on the A-side, second half on the B-side) in 1971, after Collins and Hackett joined, and the single's artwork includes pictures of them. Trespass was the first Peter Gabriel-era Genesis album (actually cassette) I bought, because it was in the cheap bin. When I got to The Knife, I was floored. It was proggy (there's an extended flute solo by Gabriel in the middle), but it rocked the hell out, and the fuzz on Anthony Phillips' guitar and Mike Rutherford's bass conveyed psychedelia as much as "high art." The subject matter, about how violent revolutions lead to dictatorship

Some of you are going to die
Martyrs of course to the freedom that I shall provide


was pretty heady stuff for a teenager as well. And the coda coming out of the flute solo, with Tony Banks' creepy organ fills building up to explosive guitar runs from Phillips, in my mind matched anything that the Zeppelins of the world came up with.

This was their set closer from 1970 to 1973 (and appears as such on their first live album) and even ended the festivities when Gabriel did a one-off reunion with them in 1982. Even though he didn't play on the recording, Hackett still performs it in his sets from time to time.

FWIW Wikkid had some great commentary throughout the entire thread: https://forums.footballguys.com/threads/the-third-100-from-1971-1-echoes.804301/
 
More winners from Jorge Ben Jor and Brandi Carlile.

Teeth Like God's Sunshine has a quality I love -- it seems like it is going to careen out of control but doesn't. I got vibes similar to Jane's Addiction's "Ted, Just Admit It..." but I'm sure that's not what they were going for.

Dirty Pool is my favorite SRV so far. Stevie Ray's playing is just nasty.

The Decemberists give us a pleasant little ditty and Trail of Dead pack a whole lot of fascinating sonic experiences into 2 minutes.
 
24 Sigur Ros - Untitled #4 (Njósnavélin) (The Spy Machine)

First track we're hearing off of Sigur Ros' third album (), all of the songs on this album are untitled but all have unofficial names.

This, along with two tracks from their previous album, is the first Sigur Ros track to ever be used in popular media. It was featured in the film Vanilla Sky. The band allowed the song to be used in the film because they thought it would be funny to see Tom Cruise act over their music. It was also used in an episode of Orphan Black. As such, this song is a lot of peoples' first introduction to the band. I also think this was used by someone in another recent draft here.

I definitely have this ranked higher than 24th but this one got moved around to make the playlist flow better.

This is another that is sung 100% in Vonlenska/Hopelandic so no lyrics.
Someone took this in the worldwide countdown (don't remember if it was you). It's amazing how much emotion comes through in the vocals even though they're singing jibberish.
 
24 Sigur Ros - Untitled #4 (Njósnavélin) (The Spy Machine)

First track we're hearing off of Sigur Ros' third album (), all of the songs on this album are untitled but all have unofficial names.

This, along with two tracks from their previous album, is the first Sigur Ros track to ever be used in popular media. It was featured in the film Vanilla Sky. The band allowed the song to be used in the film because they thought it would be funny to see Tom Cruise act over their music. It was also used in an episode of Orphan Black. As such, this song is a lot of peoples' first introduction to the band. I also think this was used by someone in another recent draft here.

I definitely have this ranked higher than 24th but this one got moved around to make the playlist flow better.

This is another that is sung 100% in Vonlenska/Hopelandic so no lyrics.
Someone took this in the worldwide countdown (don't remember if it was you). It's amazing how much emotion comes through in the vocals even though they're singing jibberish.
You just described that entire album. In fact, I’d say this song is a bit of a chill break from the emotion contained in the rest of the songs.
 
Teeth Like God's Sunshine has a quality I love -- it seems like it is going to careen out of control but doesn't.

There's a certain edge/sloppiness to their early stuff where I'm glad they didn't try to be too perfect. For instance, I'm all about the editing impulse when it comes to length and ideas, but sometimes they defy what I would think has been a journey already taken to repetitiveness -- and it works. I'm not sure that makes sense but I'm thinking of a specific song without ruining The Dreaded Marco's countdown.

One thing I will say about Modest Mouse is that they evoke a ton of memories, not all of which are great, but all of which were my life at the time. If you think I'm angsty now, you should have seen me a decade and a half ago. They fit in nicely with that.

This song probably has some of the greatest lyrical moments in modern rock history as far as I'm concerned

Here's the man
With teeth like God's shoeshine
He sparkles shimmers shines
Let's all have another Orange Julius big syrup standing in line
The malls are the soon to be ghost towns so long farewell goodbye

Take 'em all for the sense of happiness
That comes from hurting deep down inside
Or you can walk the line and give a ****
 
The twenty-four I selected.


I'm only posting it again because I think the YouTube comments are instructive (yes, I know how ridiculous that sounds). I tried to copy/paste them into a coherent little blurb about the song, but the formatting wound up all whack. Anyway, the track is off of Alive 2007 and is a great example of Daft Punk as DJs qua DJs. (Not that their other songs don't showcase that. Their sampling is so subtle you think it's their own.) Here, they take two previous songs of theirs, mix in some other stuff, and come up with an almost new track in the middle. It actually, now that I listen to it again, has a prog/post rock vibe, only it culminates in danceability. It breaks down at points in a warped almost dubstep-esque pace (this is 2007) and then accelerates right into house.

I'm listening to it tonight and glad I put it here.
 
The twenty-four I selected.


I'm only posting it again because I think the YouTube comments are instructive (yes, I know how ridiculous that sounds). I tried to copy/paste them into a coherent little blurb about the song, but the formatting wound up all whack. Anyway, the track is off of Alive 2007 and is a great example of Daft Punk as DJs qua DJs. (Not that their other songs don't showcase that. Their sampling is so subtle you think it's their own.) Here, they take two previous songs of theirs, mix in some other stuff, and come up with an almost new track in the middle. It actually, now that I listen to it again, has a prog/post rock vibe, only it culminates in danceability. It breaks down at points in a warped almost dubstep-esque pace (this is 2007) and then accelerates right into house.

I'm listening to it tonight and glad I put it here.
Loved this one. It sounds like I'm in the middle of a video game.

I thought the Elliott Smith song was Simon & Garfunkel at first. He really sounds like Paul Simon on this one. The taut guitar playing kind of sounds like Simon as well.

The Big Thief song gives me a "chilling in the basement with a cool alternachick" vibe.
 
#24- The Stranglers - Duchess

Year - 1978
Album - The Raven
UK Chart position - 14
Vocals - Hugh Cornwell
Key Lyric - Duch of the terrace knows all her heritage
Says she's Henry's kid
Knows all her history in the family
Needs a man, god forbid
God forbid

Interesting Points
1- This song is about Hugh Cornwell’s dalliance with a direct descendant of Henry VIII. She allegedly lived alone in a huge mansion. She had a constant stream of upper class potential suitors, who she rebuffed in favour of low life junkie rock star.

2- The band dressed up as choirboys for the video, which was enough for the BBC to ban the video. Meanwhile there was rampant paedophilia at the TV station running unchecked

3- This album was the first clear departure from punk and Duchess was the lead single. The evolution from Black and White to the Raven to The Gospel according to the Meninblack is fascinating. This may be one of their most commercial accessible songs, but just lacks a little bite

4- A funny lyric is “And the Rodney's are queuing up”.

What a Rodney is in this case is man “with no "breeding" (You know the type...) who trail around marriageable aristocratic chicks, to try and buy into "class" / nobility. Why "Rodney"? Because, nobody with any class / breeding whatsoever would call their son "Rodney"”
5- When The Manic Street Preachers' 1998 single "If You Tolerate This Your Children Will Be Next" was released, many commented on its similarities to this song. Stranglers singer Hugh Cornwall commented to Classic Rockmagazine: "It was bandied around when it came out. I think the publishing companies involved have musicologists who study these things and decide whether to take action. No action was taken, so obviously it didn't resemble it that much. It doesn't bother me. Everyone plagiarises everything anyway. It's the nature of the beast."

Summary to date
Year

1977 - 3
1978 - 2
1979 - 2
1980 - 0
1981 - 0
1982 - 0
1983 - 0
1984 - 0
1985 - 0
1986 - 0
1987 - 0
1988 - 1
1989 - 0
1990 onwards - 0

Where to find
Rattus Norvegicus - 3/9
No More Heroes - 0/11
Black and White - 1/12
The Raven - 2/11
The Gospel According to the Meninblack - 0/10
La Folie - 0/11
Feline - 0/9
Aural Sculpture - 0/11
Dreamtime - 0/10
All Live and All of the Night - 1/13
10 - 0/10
1991 onwards - 0
B Sides - 0
Greatest Hits - 0
Standalone Single - 1

Running Vocal Count
Hugh Cornwell - 5
Jean-Jacques Burnel - 3
Other - 0

Rundown
#31 - Walk on By
#30 - Ugly
#29 - All Day and All of the Night
#28 - Meninblack
#27 - Goodbye Toulouse
#26 - Princess of the Streets
#25 - Sweden (All Quiet on the Eastern Front)
#24 - Duchess
Next we go back to their roots and they tell us who they are from the get go
 
#24 Genesis - The Knife

Album - Trespass
Year - 1970

We get back to our second song from Trespass. As Pip mentioned a while back, this was the bands first “real” album and they did a bunch of experimenting throughout the album.

I love this song because it has such a different darker / harder feel to it (TWSS). It still has the trademark theatrical Genesis moments with varying sections throughout, but has much more menace to it than they have in most of their other work. It also has some great guitar work about 5-6 minutes into it that I love.
I forgot that I included this in my 1971 countdown (it qualified there on a loophole). What I said:

14. The Knife -- Genesis (released as a single)

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lcr3cnw4r4w

It's probably cheating to list a song that qualifies only because of a single no one other than a few die-hards in England bought, but it had a profound effect on me when I first heard it as a teenager.

The Knife is the closer to 1970's Trespass, Genesis' second album and the first on which they had artistic control, and which was recorded before Phil Collins and Steve Hackett joined the band. But it was released as a single (first half on the A-side, second half on the B-side) in 1971, after Collins and Hackett joined, and the single's artwork includes pictures of them. Trespass was the first Peter Gabriel-era Genesis album (actually cassette) I bought, because it was in the cheap bin. When I got to The Knife, I was floored. It was proggy (there's an extended flute solo by Gabriel in the middle), but it rocked the hell out, and the fuzz on Anthony Phillips' guitar and Mike Rutherford's bass conveyed psychedelia as much as "high art." The subject matter, about how violent revolutions lead to dictatorship

Some of you are going to die
Martyrs of course to the freedom that I shall provide


was pretty heady stuff for a teenager as well. And the coda coming out of the flute solo, with Tony Banks' creepy organ fills building up to explosive guitar runs from Phillips, in my mind matched anything that the Zeppelins of the world came up with.

This was their set closer from 1970 to 1973 (and appears as such on their first live album) and even ended the festivities when Gabriel did a one-off reunion with them in 1982. Even though he didn't play on the recording, Hackett still performs it in his sets from time to time.

FWIW Wikkid had some great commentary throughout the entire thread: https://forums.footballguys.com/threads/the-third-100-from-1971-1-echoes.804301/
Great stuff! As I was doing some relistening on this one recently, I wished I had ranked the song higher on my list.
 
Teeth Like God's Sunshine has a quality I love -- it seems like it is going to careen out of control but doesn't.

There's a certain edge/sloppiness to their early stuff where I'm glad they didn't try to be too perfect. For instance, I'm all about the editing impulse when it comes to length and ideas, but sometimes they defy what I would think has been a journey already taken to repetitiveness -- and it works. I'm not sure that makes sense but I'm thinking of a specific song without ruining The Dreaded Marco's countdown.

One thing I will say about Modest Mouse is that they evoke a ton of memories, not all of which are great, but all of which were my life at the time. If you think I'm angsty now, you should have seen me a decade and a half ago. They fit in nicely with that.

This song probably has some of the greatest lyrical moments in modern rock history as far as I'm concerned

Here's the man
With teeth like God's shoeshine
He sparkles shimmers shines
Let's all have another Orange Julius big syrup standing in line
The malls are the soon to be ghost towns so long farewell goodbye

Take 'em all for the sense of happiness
That comes from hurting deep down inside
Or you can walk the line and give a ****
And hell yes to this. Again, better said than I can do.

I was going to quote this same lyric but @rockaction has done it for me. One of my favorites from the band.

Isaac Brock is an underrated songwriter and lyricist.
 
24. (I've Been) Searchin' So Long
Album: Chicago VII (1974)
Writer: James Pankow
Lead vocals: Peter Cetera
Released as a single? Yes (US #9)

This one is a slow burn. Keep telling yourself: "wait for it ... wait for it ... wait for it." Like Wishing You Were Here from the same album, this ballad is clearly influenced by the Beach Boys, and Cash Box compared it to Yes (it's definitely not prog, though). I can also see a scenario where the Bee Gees record it. Lushly arranged with strings (arranged by composer Jimmie Haskell), horns and electric piano, the song gracefully glides along for three minutes and then kicks things up a notch. The real good stuff begins at 3:15, where the tempo picks up and the vocals gain soul and urgency, with Peter Cetera deploying his "gritty Paul McCartney" voice at times. At 4:00 we get the triumphant Terry Kath guitar solo, but it's brief and not mixed any higher than the horns and strings. This is music that makes you feel.
The lyrics were designed that way as well. James Pankow: "'(I've Been) Searchin' So Long' was a song about finding myself. I was starting to figure out what I was put on this earth for. I don't think anybody in the band had written a song about the quest to meet that person inside and find out what he was all about, what his ideals were. I just had to talk about who I was and what I was feeling at the time. I felt after it was recorded that maybe other people could relate to that, 'cause the '70s was a time for soul-searching, it was a time for discovery, and I think that song was probably indicative of what a lot of young people were feeling at that time."'
… Searching (don't you know I'm)
For an answer
To the question
Oh yeah
"Who am I?"
Maybe (maybe it's true)
It's only natural (it's only natural baby, yeah)
Good things
In life
Take a long time (yeah yeah)

While some ballads don't translate well to the stage, this one always has because of its dynamics and how its ending can serve as a launching point into something else, often the salsa instrumental Mongonucleosis that follows it on Chicago VII. In fact, that pair is appearing in the band's setlists this year.
Live version from 1977 by itself: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cIESk4Dwrng
Live version from 1977 with Mongonucleosis: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Awmhz7SqsTY
Leonid and Friends version (with orchestra): https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XEDatFQ3m98

At #23: I'm inconsistent with how I handle the multi-part suites, so in this case, while the entire suite doesn't hold together well enough to be included in total, two consecutive sections from it are powerful enough to land in my top 31.
This record is great.

It's funny how the brain works. In my mind this song is the second part of a suite that begins with "Wishing You Were Here". I can't recall how the two were ordered on the LP, even though I owned it. But, in my mind, the two will always be linked. Just gorgeous pieces of music.
 
When a new playlist comes out (in this and all exercises I've participated in with the MADummies), I go right click --> add to library. So apparently I've been "hearting" entire playlists without even knowing it.
I was laughing WITH you on this one. I knew what they were talking about, but I've never purposely used that fuction. Funny enough, the 8 year old asked me what I had in my favorite songs, we looked and it was just random crap, mostly full albums, that I must just hit the heart when I push play or something. I think she believes I'm a hardcore fan of the Coco and Encanto soundtracks now though.
 

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