Friday, September 23, 2005

Friday Random Ten

That's right. The Best of the Singing Postman. You no longer have to carry around all his albums, that crateload of bootleg tapes, and the lock of his hair you got from sleeping with that roadie at Tiger Stadium. No, at long last, they've searched through everything and come up with his best work. Thank God.

Alright, you know what this means -- time for the Friday Random Ten. Get out whatever thingamajig you use to play those new-fangled electronic songs, set it on random, and give us the first ten songs that come forth from the spirit world. And, as always, if you're ready to run with the big kids, give us a Coolness Self-Audit as well.

Last week, someone finally thought to ask for an explanation of the Coolness Self-Audit. First of all, remember that it's an optional addition to the FRT, sort of like power windows and curly fries. But if you decide to go with it, here's a handy rule of thumb:
0: painfully uncool
1-4: bad enough to change the station
5-6: classic tune, but one everyone knows
7-8: rarer, a little off the beaten track
9-10: so cool it would impress a snotty record-store clerk
Got it? Alright, here's mine:

1. Overlord, "Love Goes Home to Paris in the Spring" -- Found this recently on a website devoted to Magnetic Fields covers. While I'm a fan of both the Magnetic Fields and cover songs in general, this doesn't seem to have much spirit. Eh. 6/10

2. Mudhoney, "Good Enough" -- A surprisingly accessible song off an otherwise mediocre album, Every Good Boy Deserves Fudge. Still, it's strummeriffic! 8/10

3. The Frogs, "I've Got Drugs (Out of the Mist)" -- How do you explain the Frogs? Well, it's sort of like the Gimp and Zed from Pulp Fiction drank a cask of absinthe and formed a band. Other song titles include "Hot Cock Annie," a tune that sounds like it could be subtitled "Love Theme from 'The Aristocrats.'" Back when I tended bar, we used to play this album when we were closing up and trying to get rid of the frat boys. Worked every time. 10/10

4. Radiohead, "Wish You Were Here" -- Hmm, another cover. Maybe I have a problem. From the B-Sides compilation, a surprisingly faithful rendition of the Pink Floyd classic. 6/10

5. Dinah Washington with Cootie Williams' Orchestra, "Long John Blues" -- One of the sweetest, dirtiest jazz songs ever recorded. Supposedly about a trip to the dentist, but not quite. "He took out his trusty drill / And he told me to open wide / He said he wouldn't hurt me / But he'd fill my hole inside / Long John, Long John, you've got that golden touch / You thrill me when you drill me, and I need you very much." Every time I hear this song, I need a cold shower. And a fluoride rinse. 10/10

6. Throwing Muses, "Not Too Soon" -- Throwing Muses were a powerhouse of righteous, estrogen-fueled, indie rock back in the early 1990s, before Tanya Donnelly and Kristin Hersch went their separate ways. This is them at their peak. 8/10

7. Dr. John, "Mama Roux" -- A classic bit of creepin' New Orleans soul. While some say that the fact that Dr. John is not, in fact, a real doctor somehow diminishes the healing powers of his music, I strongly disagree. Look at the man. That beret screams "trust me." 7/10

8. King Tee and Ice Cube, "Get Your Girl in the Mood Quicker" -- Another song I discovered trolling the internets for free music. This is from a collection of classic commercials for St. Ides Malt Liquor, and it just so happens to be my favorite. "Get your girlie in the mood quicker / Get your jimmy thicker / with St. Ide's Malt Liquor." Damn, that boy's a Shakespeare! 10/10

9. RX, "Sunday Bloody Sunday" -- Wow, a third cover. I do have a problem. But this cover is unique: the vocals are completely culled from the speeches of George W. Bush, set to an electronica background. Sounds bizarre, I know, but it actually works quite well. Especially when they replace Bono's "Let's go!" with Bush's "Let's roll!" 8/10

10. Shadowy Men on a Shadowy Planet, "13" -- These surf-guitar geniuses will forever be associated with the theme to "The Kids in the Hall," but there are certainly worse things in life than that. Still, this is fairly predictable stuff. Sounds like something Franky and Annette would listen to while they did the watusi. Or danced. 6/10

Well, that's a 7.9, continuing my slow and steady improvement over the past few weeks. Either I'm getting cooler, or we're experiencing the soft bigotry of low expectations.

Alright, let's see what you've got. Drop your own FRT in the comments, with or without the Coolness Self-Audit.


Thrillhous said...

I see no need to relativize my coolness to that of others; I am inherently cool, and my taste in music is simply a manifestation of that coolness. Are some of the songs bad? Sure they are. I am large, I contain multitudes. Beeyatches!

1) Planet Caravan - Sabbath. What a great way to kick it off! 9/10

2) On Broken Wings - Europe. Another great song by perhaps the greatest rock group to come out of Denmark. 9/10

3) Plush - Stone Temple Pilots. Meh. 4/10

4) Living in the Past - Jethro Tull. Didn't I have this song last week? Damned nonrandom randomizer. Stupid Bill Gates gets me again. 6/10

5) Celebration Day - Zeppelin. This is a truly awesome song. Perfect for a fryday. 10/10

6) Underground - Men at Work. This song is like how I like my women: perky and a little creepy. 6/10

7) Is there anybody out there - Pink Floyd. Haven't gotten around to listening to this so-called "Wall" thing. I guess I'll have to try it someday. 1/10

8) Black Hole Sun - Soundgarden. Now we're back to rockin! Sadly, it got overplayed on the radio. 6/10

9) Sir Lancelot and the Black Knight - Rick Wakeman. Rick was the keyboardist from the mid-70s incarnation of Yes. He rulz! 8/10

10) Fool in the Rain - Zeppelin. Ugh. What a way to finish. I hate this song. 1/10

InanimateCarbonRod said...

Who cares about impressing the guy at the music store? Does anyone truly cool go to record stores any more? Stick with me, Otto Man. I'll show you cool.

1) Loaded Gun in the Closet - Drive-By Truckers. This is a great band. This is a great album. This is not a great song. 4/10

2) Thorn in My Pride - Black Crowes. I wish I could get ahold of the stuff these guys got ahold of in the early 90s. The backup singers on this album should form their own group. 9/10

3) Flying Saucer - Wedding Present. Not my favorite Weddoes song, but man do I get happy when I hear this miserable lead singer. 7/10

4) Changes - Sabbath. I loves me the Sabbath, but this is their Fool in the Rain. 3/10

5) Car and Driver - The Rock A Teens. Absolutely the best band to ever emerge from Cabbagetown, GA. Enjoyable noise. 6/10

6) To Be in Love - Seeger Ellis. I know nothing about Seeger Ellis, but Louis Armstrong is playing behind the questionably sensitive vocals. 5/10

7) Jaws of Life - Wintersleep. These guys want to be Soundgarden so bad it hurts. 4/10

8) Jolene - White Stripes. Now this is a classic cover of a great song. A live recording of a Dolly Parton cover. Jack White doesn't change the lyrics, so if you can get past him pleading with a beautiful readhead "Please don't take my man," it totally works. This song makes you close your eyes, shake your head, and pump your fist. All you White Stripes haters bow before me. 10/10

9) Larry - Buffalo Tom. You know how you listen to an album and it makes you nostalgic for the time when you had no responsibilities other than to occasionally make it to class? This album does that to me every time, and I didn't even listen to it in college. 9/10

10) I'm the Slime - Frank Zappa. Now here's a Friday song. Angry and profane and catchy. Zappa was at the high point of his career here. I have Apostrophe and Overnite Sensation on one CD. He really should have released this as a double album. Definitely a real poncho. 9/10.

Mrs_Thrillhous said...

A record store clerk once mocked a customer after he left. You would too--he bought Gin Blossoms' New Miserable Experience, and I think it was 1996.

1) Clock, Milla – It’d be better if there was a video. Or, video game. Or, just keep it coming with movies based on video games. Hotness! 5/10

2) Creep (Clean), Radiohead – For the billionth time. 6/10
3) Love In Itself, Depeche Mode – Typical synthesizer overuse. 6/10
4) What For, James – Sunshine and happiness! 8/10

5) Ultra Violet (Light My Way), U2 – I think that, when performing this song on their highly choreographed Zoo TV tour, they had a woman on stage and sprayed her with champagne. Hmm. I can’t believe how long ago that was. 6/10

6) Vervaceous, James – Like walking through syrup... 6/10
7) Theme from Flood, They Might Be Giants – If songs turn into jingles like they did in Demolition Man, they should all be this good! 7/10

8) Surrender, Trixter – A lesser metal ballad. Didn’t they know how lame their name was? 4/10

9) Birdhouse in Your Soul, They Might Be Giants – More happiness for my Friday! 9/10
10) Just The Way You Are, Billy Joel – Easy listening crap! It must be terminated. 1/10

Otto Man said...

"On Broken Wings"? 9/10? Are you shitting me?

That song is so bad I had to interrupt my vacation to shame you for it.

Yossarian said...

Yes the record store guy is STILL the yard stick of cool. Even if you never read the book "High Fidelity" it is a map of society. My first job out of college was in a record store and for six months I was cooler than penguin shit. no lie.

1. Pick Up The Pieces - Average White Band - This song is misleading twice because there is nothing average or white about it. 9/10

2. Ladies First - Marlo Thomas - From the classic "Free to be you and Me". Marlo taking it to the streets..."for the kids ya' know". At least it's not Michael Jackson or Rosy Grier. 1/10

3. Playground Love - Air - Pretentious French mood music that might be about pedophile. Yet still cooler than Marlo Thomas. 3/10

4. You Don't Know What Love Is - Sonny Rollins - You probably have heard this song in about every film noir movie. Just listening to it makes me want to start smoking again. 8/10

5. Pads, Paws and Claws - Elvis Costello - From his first album without the Attractions. Great song. Period. 10/10

6. If I only had a Heart - Afgan Whigs - Greg Dulli sings this so slow and sad that it makes you wonder why anybody wants a heart. 8/10

7. Pictures Of Matchstick Men - Camper Van BeethOven - Yes it is overplayed, but still one of my favorite CVB songs. 7/10

8. I'm The Man - Joe Jackson - I prayed to God above everyday night last month that the scum-bags in Hollywood would not use this classic song for that certifiable P.O.S. movie with the same name. Does anybody know if they did? 8/10

9. That's Me Trying - William Shatner (feat. Aimee Mann) - I love this song and I love this album AND I am NOT a trekie (or treker -whatever the difference is). However I can't listen to more than one track at a time. It's like They Might Be Giants - fun for a track or two, but I would hate to listen to a whole album. 9/10

10. Black Rage - Chasing Amy - Not a song, but a monologue about how the white man keeps the black man down even in the medium of comic and sci-fi/fantasy. 6/10

Thrillhous said...

First of all, I agree with Inanny on Changes by Sabbath. I'd ask what were they smoking, but I already know the answer. As well as what they were drinking, dropping, and injecting. I guess it can't all be Iron Mans and Electric Funerals.

Second, Otto, you know you love Europe, both the country and the band. Yes, we red staters think of Europe as a single monolithic country. The president is Michael Moore.

Third, Mrs. T, that Billy Joel crap is YOURS, not mine!

Mr Furious said...

1. "Zooropa" - U2 Yeah, I know it's blasphemy, but the "middle" U2 is my favorite U2: Joshua Tree, Achtung Baby and Zooropa. 7/10

2. "Changed Your Mind" - Chris Isaak Sometimes it's like Chris Isaak and The Black Crowes are the only things in my iPod, causing me to skip otherwise good songs. I did NOT skip this one. 8/10

3. "Ruby Baby" - Donald Fagan When we named our daughter Ruby three years ago, I dug this out and really wanted it to be as good as I remembered it. It's not. 4/10

4. "She Said, She said [live]" - Matthew Sweet Some guys were born to play Beatles covers. 8/10

5. "Clampdown" - The Clash Was my favorite track off London Callling back in the day. I might go with Death or glory now, but it's close. 10/10

6. "Alive and Kicking" Simple Minds My favorite band out of this genre. Wimpyish 80s UK pop? I don't know, I guess better (even a human) drummer than the bands of their ilk is all it takes. This one's for you Mrs Thrilhous. 6/10

7. "Since You're Gone" - The Cars Last great Cars song before they started to completely suck. A great video too. 8/10

8. "Runaway" - Bonnie Raitt Another cover song. Not as good as the Del Shannon version. This song always makes me think of the excellent "Crime Story". Glad to see a lot of those guys back on the tube. 4/10

9. "Weightless" - Chris Whitley A pretty good song from the inconsistant Whitley. At times a true genius and viruoso steel and slide guitarist of tremendous talent and songwriting ability. Other times, not so much. 8/10

10. "Mr. Hanalei" - Sound of Urchin A band of guys I semi-know that should have made it big based on this song alone.Think 311 but more fun and goofy mixed with a less-funky, more KISS-influenced Red Hot Chile Peppers. Huh? Trust me. It's a song inspired by the Hawaii episode of the 'Brady Bunch' fer crissakes. Do gimmicks get any better than that? RCA let them put out one good EP, then ruined them. 9/10

7.2 total. Not as good as last week, but nothing worth skipping either...I'll take it.

Mr Furious said...

10) I'm the Slime - Frank Zappa. - I'm thinking Sears poncho... This was one of my first CDs. Much of this stuff is positively brilliant, but it's probably the only Zappa I'll ever need.

10) Fool in the Rain - Zeppelin. - I don't know if it's a "1", but it's definitley the Zeppelin you wanted to come on when you were riding in the car with your mom.

8) Black Hole Sun - Soundgarden. - Sorry, the beginning of the end for a great band. 3/10

2. Ladies First - Marlo Thomas - Ugh. If this is a "1" then "Dudley Pippin" is a minus 1.

InanimateCarbonRod said...

How can anyone badmouth "Free to Be You and Me?" This is a classic kiddy album, all about liberal ideas like equality of sexes and races. The Mel Brooks track "Boy Meets Girl" is one of the highlights of my childhood.

Mr. Furious, you definitely need more Zappa than Apostrophe and Overnite Sensation. I highly recommend Sheik Yerbouti and Hot Rats. The former has more of the same juvenile humor and catchy songs as Apostrophe/Overnite Sensation. The latter is an earlier jazz-rock album that full of gonzo beauty. One must-have live album is The Best Band You Never Heard in Your Life. It's got covers of Ring of Fire and Stairway to Heaven. StH features Jimmy Page's guitar solo rendered by a horn section. I challenge you to listen to it and not get goosebumps.

ORF said...

Dude, Otto, what time are you getting up in the morning to do this??? Same to you, Thrillhous!

Also, thanks for mentioning that I asked for instructions, but next time put a link in to my ass, bitch! ;)

Finally, here's my list. And just for the record, I have never heard of most of the people y'all listen to which makes me feel sheepishly uncool because I'd like to think that a lot of what I listen to is less-than-mainstream but clearly I've got a long way to go...

1: Foolish Love-Rufus Wainwright 6/10
Ruf is one of the best songwriters of this generation and gives me hope for the future of pretty music. This song is nice, but not one of his best.

2: Si Je Tavais Ecoute-Les Nubians
I love these girls, but also, not one of their best. A nice Friday a.m. track tho

3: Pass It On-The Coral 7.5/10
I got this track off of a Virgin compilation CD and don't really know this band, but I dig the song, even tho they totally just rip off The Shins.

4: Viento Del Arena-The Gipsy Kings 1/10
I was into them when I lived in Spain, but not so much anymore. Note to self: Remove this album from iPod.

5: Estoria Da Boca-Antonio Pinto and Ed Cortez (from City of God sdtrk) 8/10
I really love this soundtrack. And would totally love some slo-mo action with this track, but maybe for a sweet makeout session instead of the bar entrance. And it looks like I could call this FRT edition an international one...

6: Tell Him- The Exciters 7/10 1960s pop is the best!!

7: Diamonds and Pearls-Prince 6/10 Again, not one of the best, but still fun.

8: Easy to Please-Coldplay 5/10
This is from some live recording I got from somewhere. Not in love with it.

9: Intro-De La Soul on "Stakes Is High" album 8/10 Everyone everywhere owes everything to De La.

10: Lost Cause-Beck 11/10
Record store geeks be damned, I'm giving this one an extra point!!!
This is one of my favorite songs and also one of the saddest I've ever heard, but I love it so much that I played it twice.

Mrs_Thrillhous said...

Once again, me and T almost overlap. I love Fool in the Rain. Are you guys afraid of melodicness? Is Robert not allowed to sing?

the "middle" U2 is my favorite U2

Zooropa was OK. Joshua Tree and Achtung are two of the Best Ever, but then the band changed. Their current stuff defines "crap." They went light rock a la Sting, who I can also live without now and wouldn't ever hear again if he didn't sell his songs for commercials.

Soundgarden always sucked. Wherever Chris Cornell is a big bag of suckiness. T-hous--keep it at work!

Otto Man said...

OReally, sorry for the snub -- it was late and I couldn't remember who asked about it.

As far as the timing goes, I wrote this before leaving town and the Mighty Thrillhous posted it for me.

Speaking of which, I've got to side with Mr. T on Soundgarden. They rock so hard it hurts the fillings in my teeth. In a good way.

ORF said...

No worries, Otto. Just busting some chops. Just busting some chops.

alex supertramp said...

thrillh -- I think the lady doth protest to much, in other words I think she needs a little talking to - even in his current cooler than the mall incarnation of Audioslave Cornell still kicks ass and Trixter the 'lesser metal shitstorm' garners a 4?... of course you actually like Europe, and "on broken wings no less" so I'm not 100% on you...yos, very nice list this week for the Rollins, Costello and Whigs run alone ... ICR, perfect call on Buffalo Tom's nostalgia aspect, of course I did listen to and check 'em out numerous times in college and can almost remember those hazy dayz ...
speaking of, time for my FRT:
1)Treasures of Gold - Damian Jurado -- one of the best singer songwriters there is, I get chills with each and every syllable... the man can do no wrong, I'm all but shaking, of course not exactly the most upbeat guy or track to kick of a FRT. 9/10

2)Watching the Wheels (live)- Samples. talk about bringing back some of those hazy memories ... I love the samples, but this Lennon cover is a little too shimmery pop for my liking, but nice sentiment from ol' johnny boy.7/10

3)Peaceful Valley - Ryan Adams -- old ryan is a bit to prolific for his own good, or at least a bit too egotistical to realize that not every track he writes deserves an album built around it. That said I usually end up buying each album as he shits it out. Jacksonville City Nights harkens back a little closer to his earlier whiskeytown incarnations but can't quite capture the magic -very serviceable but his Grateful Dead jones that showed up hardcore on Cold Roses is still readily obvious. Still good 7/10

4)Friday Night Saturday Morning - Nouvelle Vague - I can't figure out what it is (or if I really like) these french new wave bossa nova (haha) re-workings of 80s classics like this specials track --- I want to hate them, but sadly I do not. 8/10

5)Since you been gone - Ted Leo - acoustic rendering of Kelly Clarkson tune. I think this popped up just a week or two ago, and it has a definite emo tendency that I'm a sucker for, but just a bit too sugary for long term digestion, even by the mighty mr leo. 8/10 (it is ted leo after all)

6)Drank Anthem - Nate Dogg -- this is only fitting because all I've been listening to all day are st ides commercials since Otto's early AM post .. damn I'm thirsty, and gotDAMN! I 'm ready for the muthafuckin a commercial should NOT be this smooth and cool, unless it is for a 40 of st ides that is...8/10

7)Spaced Cowboy - Sly and the family stone(d) - the only problem here is I would have liked to end on this note, although it is a bit cheesy with the yodeling Sly, but somehow still funky, if a bit to mellow for a big FRT ending anyway. 8/10

8)lust for life- bad livers -- a bluegrass cover of Iggy's "lust for life", kinda campy, but kinda damn cool - and would you expect anything less from the 'Livers?8/10

9)Back in teh air - Ol Dirty Bastard w Ghostface Killah --dead rappers never really die, they just keep putting out the shit..."alot a niggers wanna dust me off, bad bitches wanna suck me off" RIP ODB, or dirt mcgirt or whatever you're going to call yourself of the next posthumous album...8/10

10)Ganja Planter - Marlon Asher - a little trini reggae speakin the word, lord ha love mi ganja, it's like 10,000 babylon in one blue van... great vibe, great tune, FRT you are welcome...9/10

alex supertramp said...

I know a handful of you yuksters are in GA ... and if I were closer, this is where i would be come oct 22-3!:

Paste Rock 'n' Reel Festival, Subscriber-only pre-sale

The Paste Rock 'n' Reel Festival (previously known as Paste Shorts Fest) is one month away, and you're invited to a special subscriber-only pre-sale. Until Wednesday of next week (9/28), only Paste subscribers are eligible to buy tickets. Don't risk getting shut out of the festival when tickets become available to the general public. Visit for tickets. has enough information to whet your appetite, and over the next couple weeks we will release more information as it becomes available. Exciting music acts are still being added and films selected. Here's a teaser of what awaits those lucky enough to attend:

Paste Rock 'n' Reel:

When: October 22 & 23, noon to 10 p.m.
Where: Decatur, GA
In and around our new offices at East Decatur Station
Music. Two stages with
Low (one of only two performances this year)
Mark Olson & Victoria Williams
Buddy Miller
Over the Rhine
Howe Gelb (possibly with Giant Sand)
Brandi Carlile
Cary Brothers
Elf Power
Erin McKeown
Trent Dabbs
Denison Witmer
Kate York, Red Letter Agent, Manchester Orchestra, Anathallo, Colour Revolt, A Fir-Ju Well, AFAR, Anthony David, Blake Guthrie, Modern Skirts, The Whigs, Tyler James, Taylor Hollingsworth, The Selmanaires and others we'll announce soon
Film. Two screening rooms with two special feature film presentations, a forum with the Brothers Chaps from, our short film competition, Academy-nominated shorts, Best of Paste DVDs, and a Global Awareness film and discussion forum on issues in developing nations.
Theatrical performance, art exhibit, crafts and more.


Tim Porter, Festival Director, Senior Editor and Chief Film Enthusiast for the entire Paste team

General office: 404.378.8677
Fax: 404.378.8872
Mailing address: PO Box 1606, Decatur, GA 30031

Mrs_Thrillhous said...

thrillh -- I think the lady doth protest to much

Trixter has always been avoidable, unlike S'garden. Nothing makes me cringe faster than the screechy banshee who is C Cornell!

This song is like how I like my women: perky and a little creepy.

Hmmm. "Creepy" is a characteristic usually associated for guys, as is "perky" for girls, and I'm not all that perky. Puzzlement ensues.