Shuffle: Reviewing 5 Random Songs
I opened up my Spotify library and shuffled everything: all of it, the comedy, the guilty pleasures, the tracks that were interesting at some point for some reason, and the Bob Dylan. What came out? Here, I review the first five songs that show up, no matter what they are:
1. "Bands With Managers": Pedro the Lion
I really like this song, as it perfectly encapsulates that sad-core minor-key-electric-guitar-Seattle- rainy-type sound of the early 2000's. Pedro the Lion was the moniker for songwriter David Bazan, who at the time still identified as a Christian artist, although his work would slowly move away from spiritual themes, as they do here. The lyrics don't really provide any sort of transcendence, rather, they cast a critical eye towards popular music culture as Dave Bazan deals with the reality that his career path just might not work out. The songs reaches a emotional high point as Bazan falsettos the bridge home: "You don't believe when I say/ that it won't be all right".
2. "I Know, Didn't I": Slimkid 3
I don't really know much about Slimkid 3, but he sure has the ability to utilize an infectiously good sample (Dardono, "Didn't I") and the audacity to take the moral high ground after a relationship. This song certainly has a positive vibe, and will leave your head shaking not just from the beat but from the way this cat was done wrong.
3. Refugee: Tom Petty
Tom Petty is the peanut butter and jelly of the world of rock. He's solid. Accordingly, this song is about as average as you can get. Right now, it's probably being pumped out of some Midwestern classic rock radio station, and for good reason: the swirling organ and Petty's vocal delivery are done well. You might overhear this one as you pump your gas. It's a dependable song, totally PB & J on wheat toast.
4. Love the way you Lie: Eminem
In the Obama era, Eminem was certainly battling down some demons, but when hasn't he? Em moved away from absent fathers and poverty in Michigan to his adult concerns: relationship problems, emotional abuse, and addiction. He's never been for the faint of heart, as his songs serve as unflinching biopsies of his own heart. Here, Rihanna joins him on the bill for a dark narrative about a romance gone way wrong.
5. Incinerate: Sonic Youth
Sonic Youth took their warped and melodic guitars to the NYC underground in the 1980's, and I feel like they haven't moved on since. Their electric guitar assaults always seemed to find a shimmering melody, so I guess they haven't had the desire to paint new brushstrokes on their already beautiful canvas. I really dig this tune, the guitar's are clean, not fuzzed out, and it sounds like true city rock n' roll. The lyrics replay a typical romantic lament that uses fire or incineration as a metaphor. What's truly enjoyable here is listening to the band jive together, the melodic and clean electric guitars, and how they fit their parts together to create the song.