Friday, March 31, 2006

Friday Random Ten

Although the three people who read this site when we started it last summer will recognize this cover as a repeat from one of our very first FRTs, I thought I'd trot it out for the rest of you as atonement for the "Millie Jackson Incident" of last week's FRT.

While it's not at Millie's depths of depravity, this image is wrong for so many reasons. For starters, the phrase "Tijuana Picnic" seems like something that would be used to describe a sexual and/or scatalogical act that would be illegal in thirty-eight states, and not a wholesome family outing. But even if it really is a picnic in Tijuana, a.k.a. the Happiest Place on Earth™, then what in God's name is Colonel Sanders doing there? Man, I guess it's like the old saying goes: "What happens in Tijuana, stays in Tijuana."

Anyway, with this kind of musical inspiration, it's time for the Friday Random Ten. Take out your iPod, set it on random, and spin the wheel, raggedy man! If you think you've got the stones, go ahead and include a Coolness Self-Audit. And then set aside a little quiet time for yourself. Go ahead. You deserve it.

1. Hot Chocolate, "Emma" -- A slow sultry number from the UK's greatest late '70s funk band. Yeah, that's not saying a whole lot, but this is a thing of cheesy beauty. (Hell, the lush lounge lizards of Urge Overkill covered the song and barely had to change a thing.) Sweet. 8/10

2. The Kinks, "Wicked Annabella" -- This isn't as catchy or light as some of the other songs on Village Preservation Society, such as "Picture Book" which has been used in a fairly cool HP Printer commercial. This song is, in fact, more than a little bit creepy. Eh. 4/10

3. Radiohead, "Palo Alto" -- Pretty solid work for a song that was cast off to an EP and a B-sides collection. The grungy guitars seem like a throwback to "Creep," but there's enough aural insanity thrown in there to make it fit with the late-era Radiohead. 7/10

4. Lauryn Hill, "Every Ghetto, Every City" -- Man, what the hell happened to her? This was a brilliant debut album, but she followed it up with a somewhat rambling Unplugged release and some half-hearted, where-are-they-now Fugees reunion stuff. Come back to the light, Lauryn. We miss you. 9/10

5. David Bowie, "Queen Bitch" -- Quite possibly my favorite Bowie song of all time. From the opening guitar riffs to the semipsychotic chorus, this one is everywhere you want to be, baby! 9/10

6. The Roots, "Don't Say Nuthin' (Remix)" -- This is a remix from the new Home Grown collection. The original never really did much for me, but this sparse and driving remix certainly makes it all better. 7/10

7. A Tribe Called Quest, "After Hours" -- I know this is blasphemy, but "After Hours" has always been my favorite tune off People's Instinctive Rhythms..., edging out such popular favorites as "Can I Kick It?" and "I Left My Wallet in El Segundo." It's just much smoother and cleaner, and points the way to their next, jazzier stage. And as the man says, "after hours, it was cool." Who am I to argue? 8/10

8. Luxxury, "There's Something Going On" -- I'm a sucker for cover songs of big hits, but this rendition of Frida's disco classic just doesn't do it. The group sounds like a Human League tribute band, one that needs to be told to limit it to six synthesizers or less, or else pack it in. Ugh. 2/10

9. Sly and the Family Stone, "Dance to the Medley" -- This is a 12-minute tour-de-funk by a band that was one of America's greatest contributions to the world, right up there with Silly Putty and the atomic bomb. They could've cut this up into three distinct and distinctly great songs, but kept it instead as a killer funk masterpiece. 10/10

10. MC Chris, "DQ Blizzard" -- While I have nothing but respect from the genius who brought us "Fett's Vette" and the Aqua Teen Hunger Force character of MC Pee Pants, this isn't his finest work. 5/10

Alright, that gives me a 6.9 average on the coolness scale. While the hipster in me is saddened to score so low, the fourteen-year-old in me is giggling at the number. Which should probably lower it even more. Dammit.

Let's see what you've got this week. Give us your own random ten, with or without the coolness self-audit. And please note, we've recently enabled anonymous comments for the site, so now you can be coolly anonymous, just like the Unknown Comic!


Smitty said...

I am saving my liver this week; I take the National Beer Judge Certification Exam on Sunday....wish me luck.

Otto Man said...

You're going to take that test sober? Are you insane?!?

Seriously, good luck. If you can't pass that test, no one can.

Mr Furious said...

If you think Smitty is sorry-ass, check my Friday Random Ten out...

Otto Man said...

Man, what's with the mass lethargy today? Is there a gas leak in the country?

Mr Furious said...

I don't know about the rest of the country, but I've had one all week...

Otto Man said...

Zing! I'm surprised StudioDave didn't beat you to that one.

Tom Hilton said...

Okay, I'll step up to the plate:

Moussa Doumba - Keleya (8/10 - excellent '70s African psychedelic funk)
Material - Black Light (7/10 - it's long and kind of jazzy, but I like it)
M-1 Alternative - Juliet (4/10 - maddening; there's lots to like about it, and lots to hate)
Angelo Badalamenti - Fats Revisited (8/10 - great creepy, spooky soundtrack instrumental)
Wire - Dot Dash (7/10 - classic minimalist punk...or is it early post-punk?)
Rhythm Rockers - Madness (10/10 - this instrumental goes to 11, even if the scoring system doesn't)
The Blasters - Common Man (9/10 - classic Blasters, as relevant today as it was 25 years ago)
Combustible Edison - Hot and Bothered (either 7/10 or 3/10, depending on whether it gets better or worse after I listen to it a few more times)
Wire - Two People in a Room (10/10 - definitely post-punk)
Smithereens - In a Lonely Place (8/10 - fine melancholy Smithereens tune; Suzanne Vega's backing vocals are probably the least annoying thing she ever did)

Either 7.4 or 7.8, depending on the Combustible Edison final grade.

Pooh said...

Pooh's Ipod Rawx1. "609 Boogie" - John Lee Hooker. JLH vs. stride piano = awesome 9/10.

2. "House of the Rising Sun" - Doc Watson. Something is quite wrong and yet quite right about a country boy like Doc singing about a whorehouse in NOLA. 7/10.

3. "Poor Rambler" - Ralph Stanley. Fiddle me this, would I have ever started listening to bluegrass if not for the Coen brothers? 5/10.

4. "The Way U Make Me Feel" - Black Eyed Peas. Pre-Fergie, so it doesn't get the instant coolness edit. This album is not as good as I remember it from the first time I heard it. 4/10.

5. "Highway to Hell (Live)" - AC/DC. Brn-ner-ner, Brn-ner-ner-ner, Brn-ner-ner-ner, Ber-Ber-ner. BumpBumpBumpBumpBumpBump..."I'mona HIGHWAY TO HELL." Sorry that got me going a little. 10/10.

6. "My Sharona" - The Knack. When this song came on, my neighbor at work got up and started dancing. Reality does indeed Bite at times. 7/10.

7. "Greystone Chapel" - Johnny Cash. Nothing like a good sing-a-long at a prison. Is it me or has Cash been devalued a bit by "Everywhere Man" being played every 30 minutes as part of those stupid commercials, much like Bob Seger and those Chevy Truck spots? 6/10.

8. "X" - Xzibit. Before Rides were Pimped and collars where popped, X was the latest in a long, long long line of nondescript one-hit hip-hop wonders. (Stand up, Skee-lo, Mystikal, Petey Pablo (RAISE UP), and so on) 5/10.

9. "Calm Like a Bomb (LIVE)" - Rage Against the Machine. Having this song over the closing credits of Matrix Reloaded probably went a ways towards insuring my inflated view of said film. Watchasaywhat? 9/10.

10. "Runaway" - Me First and the Gimme Gimmes. Yes, yes, this song has appeared here before, but MFGG always makes the mo' better 'mo better. 7/10.

Average= 6.9 dude. Well played, little white hard drive!

TravisG said...

I'm on my third iPod in one year. My wife dropped my first one, which lasted 10 months, into the cats' water dish. Then the replacement started freezing for no reason last week. I took it last weekend to the Apple store last week before the warranty ran out, and the manager traded in my 60-gig, white iPod photo for a 60-gig, black iPod video. So far, it has fantastic music taste:

"It's About Time We Had A Change," Youth Brigade -- Old hardcore with a suprisingly supple bassline. 8/10

"Long-Distance Runaround," Yes -- This album reminds me of the time Shawn Kemp shot an unprecedented 40-for-40 from the field, and 20-for-20 from the line in a playoff game in whatever Nintendo NBA game was out in 1993. 6/10

"We're Going To Live For A Very Long Time," Heaven 17 -- A bunch of new wave fags make fun of religious people on synths they must have ordered from the back of comic books. 9/10

"Cold Brains," Beck -- Eh. 6/10

"Annalisa," Public Image Limited -- I need to get their first album. 9/10

"Brain Cloudy Blues," Bob Wills & His Texas Playboys -- I should get some of their records, too. And more Django Reinhardt. 8/10

"Let Your Love Flow," Bellamy Brothers -- Not cool, but an all-time favorite of mine. It reminds me of summer days, driving to the garden center to buy a bunch of crap I don't have room to plant. Hey! That sounds like this weekend (and next). 3/10

"Janis," Liaisons Dangereuses -- I don't know what the hell this is or why I've got it. It's, like, French rap with a beat built on cabaret samples. Kinda cool, maybe. I can't really tell. 6/10

"When They Come," Devendra Banhart -- I thoroughly enjoyed every moment of this very long song. Whoa. 7/10

"When You're Near Me I Have Difficulty Concentrating," XTC -- They should trade names with Daft Punk. 7/10

"Wrong Time Capsule," Deerhoof -- My, what a tuneful racket they make. 8/10

Anonymous said...

Good evening, everyone.

Thank you, Otto Man, for your gracious invitation to post my random 10. I brought crumb cake to show there's no hard feelings with the bouncer throwing me out last week.

1) Hello Stranger (Barbara Lewis) In line with The Platters but with a better rhythm section. Sweet melody and her voice is terrific. 8/10

2) The Man I Love (Etta James) Someone I would love to see live. The back up band, especially on piano, is old school and her singing is straight ahead here. Great stuff. 8/10

3) Whole Lotta Love (Led Zeppelin) 11/10.

4) Bang a Gong (T Rex) There's a review at that says "The thing is, his riffs are so mind-suckingly good..." Yup, they are, not to mention some of the best backup singers to hit vinyl. 10/10

5) Waiting (Santana) Filler. 1/10

6) Tusk (Fleetwood Mac) They were trying to sound Important. They succeeded in sounding Vapid. 0/10

7) West End Girls (Pet Shop Boys) I hate to agree with Andrew Sullivan about anything but I do like this tune, pop nonsense and all. 4/10

8)The Sky Is Crying (Stevie Ray Vaughan) Set the standard for everyone after him. 10/10

9)Keep Off My Cloud (Rolling Stones) Jagger's voice sounds so fresh. The whole thing holds up well. 5/10

10) This Masquerade (Leon Russell) A depressing, haunting ballad . His vocals and arrangement are near perfect. 9/10


Otto Man said...

Hello Stranger (Barbara Lewis)

One of my all-time favorites.