Finally, we can reveal just how Santa always knows when you''re sleeping and knows when you're awake. He's got more electronic surveillance out there than the NSA. And from the panicked, wide-eyed look on his face, it sounds like he just overheard something serious. Maybe it's a Bumble plot to assassinate Yukon Cornelius, or maybe he's just found out that the wayward Mrs. Santa has been on Donner, on Dasher, on Prancer and Blitzen. Whatever it is, it doesn't look good.
Alright, Misfit Toys, it's time for the Friday Random Ten.
1. The Arcade Fire, "Haiti" -- Say what you will about the Francophone world -- and, believe me, I've heard what you've been saying -- but those people stick together. Here's a band from Montreal not only singing about Haiti, but adopting a little Carribean steel drum to make the song feel at home. Vous bâtards magnifiques! Je vous salue. 8/10
2. Them, "It's All Over Now, Baby Blue" -- Probably my favorite bit of work from Van Morrison. It doesn't hurt that this was sampled beautifully for Beck's "Jack-Ass" either. 7/10
3. Sleater-Kinney, "Entertain" -- I had some grrrl friends who were really into these ladies a few years back, but I never really caught the bug. Am I alone on this? Is it a sign that I hate women? 4/10
4. The Aqua Velvets, "Spanish Blue" -- This is a fairly straightforward, surf rock instrumental. Not much amazing about the tune, but you've got to love the band name. 5/10
5. The Amps, "Pacer" -- The Amps are one of the forty-eight bands that Kim Deal helped form during the late '90s between gigs with the Pixies. The lone (?) album by the Amps, also named Pacer is solid enough, but for some reason this title track is one of the weaker songs. Eh. 6/10
6. The Velvet Underground, "Sweet Jane (live)" -- A terrific track off the 1969 live album. Not sure what else needs to be said. 8/10
7. J.J. Chauke & Tiyimeleni Young Sisters, "Madyisa Mbitsi" -- South African pop from the '80s, I believe. I have no proof of this, but I'm convinced the opening riffs of this song are what inspired Paul Simon's "I Know What I Know" from the Graceland album. Very nice. 7/10
8. Harry Belafonte, "Will His Love Be Like His Rum?" -- Of all the calypso wedding numbers I have, this is easily my favorite. 6/10
9. The Grifters, "Bronze Cast" -- Some outstanding indie rock from the early '90s, off the album Crappin' You Negative. I shit you not. Anyone know what happened to these guys? 9/10
10. Ray Charles, "Greenbacks" -- This is a great song from his Atlantic sessions in the '50s, a rolling R&B jumper with some catchy hooks and nice vocals. 7/10
Alright, that gives me yet another 6.7 rating. The same as last week, and a couple weeks before that. It seems it's Santa's will to keep me at two-thirds cool, so who am I to argue?
Let's see what you've got this week. Go ahead and drop your own FRTs in the comments below. Remember, the coolness self-audit is optional, but the sacrificial offering of milk and cookies is mandatory.