Alright, folks, it's once again time for the Friday Random Ten. I've been criticized lately for grading my own picks a little too harshly, but I'm happy to say that through the power of Dianetics, I've thankfully overcome that problem for good. Here's this week's ten as proof.
1. A Tribe Called Quest, "Find a Way" -- Even with timeless lines like "Teasing me, just like Tisha did Martin," this is still a nice little Tribe tune. 6/10
2. The Decemberists, "16 Military Wives" -- Phenomenal song, given a coolness boost by its brilliant, Rushmore-themed video that spoofed the Bush administration's approach to foreign policy. (Trust me, it worked. Video available here.) 9/10
3. Huevos Rancheros, "Drive-Through at Molly's Beach" -- What's better than a great surf guitar instrumental? Naming it after a delicious breakfast. Muy picante! 8/10
4. Astrud Gilberto and RJD2, "The Gentle Rain (RJD2 remix)" -- Brilliant techno remix of an amazing Brazilian torch song. From one of the excellent Verve Remixed CDs. Can't imagine much that's better. 10/10
5. Johnny Cash, "25 Minutes to Go" -- A dark Cash tune. It's from the Columbia Records era, but the black tone and topic (a convict waiting for his own execution) make it sound like it's off an American Recordings album. 7/10
6. Reverend Horton Heat, "Where in the Hell Did You Go with My Toothbrush?" -- Not the typical RHH blistering, speed-on-brother, hell-ain't-half-full rockabilly, but a slower break-up song that's still catchy as hell. 8/10
7. The 126.96.36.199's, "Edie is a Sweet Candy" -- Man, a big day for surf and rockabilly. The 188.8.131.52's are a unique one, though -- a trio of Japanese women who dress in cavegirl outfits and play songs about James Bond and, apparently, a sweet candy named Edie. 9/10
8. The Avalanches, "Flight Tonight" -- From the Australian group's all-samples Since I Left You. I alternate between loving and ignoring this CD with the sort of ambivalence hipster dudes show to their ladyfriends. Guess that's so cool it doesn't care about coolness at all. 9/10
9. Camper Van Beethoven, "Pictures of Matchstick Men" -- A nice cover of the classic Status Quo tune. Not spectacular, but not too bad. 6/10
10. Jimmy Castor Bunch, "Say Leroy (The Creature from the Black Lagoon is Your Father)" -- Wow, did I stick the landing, or what? A phenomenal, 6 and 1/2 minute funk grinder, by a criminally underappreciated funk band and with a title like that? 10/10
All in all, that's an 8.2 average. Right between Bill Clinton and George Clinton. Sweet!
Please drop your own random ten in the comments, folks, with or without the coolness self-audit.