Archive | June, 2016

Down the Rabbithole Playlist

8 Jun

 

De La Soul-Pain

Beastie Boys-And Me

Bent-A Ribbon For My Hair

Rui Da Silva Touch Me

Jay-Z & Pharrell- FCK All Night

All Night Long-Mary Jane Girls

Sebastian-Arabest

Flume-Holdin’ On (Kaytranada Edit)

Jaye Williams-Let Me Be The One

Run The Jewels-DDFH

Satin Jackets- Girl, Forever

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Top 10 Radiohead B-sides (in no particular order)

5 Jun

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In honor of Radiohead officially becoming “Dad Rock”with the release of A Moon Shaped Pool, I wanted to take a second and celebrate their immense songwriting catalog. I hate to say it, but this is their All That You Can’t Leave Behind (U2’s tenth album while AMSP is Radiohead’s 9th LP). It happens though, everyone loses their fastball at one time or another, even writers. It is crazy to cull the archives and look at just how many good songs were not good enough to make their albums.  It really goes to show how productive the band was from 1995 to 2001 (Bends, then OK Computer, but I’ve always thought there could have been 3 albums from Kid-A/Amnesiac era).

 

Bishop’s Robes When I went off to college, I was thrilled to meet a guy in my dorm who was an even bigger Radiohead fan than I was. He made me a CD with all of the B-sides from their (then) 3 albums. From the period between the Bends and OK Computer, this was immediately one of my favorites.

Gagging Order One of the prettiest songs from the Hail To The Thief era. The band decided it was better off being just a B-side. Listening to the album, you can see that it doesn’t quite fit with the rest of the playlist, but that doesn’t change how beautiful it is.

India Rubber A true throwaway that never really went anywhere. Every time I hear this song, I want to throw on my Chuck Taylors, blue jeans, and my old Speed Racer T-shirt. This was also the first time I heard the word “supplicate”.

Trickster  A great one from the Bends era, that has that pure 90’s guitar sound. I wouldn’t have complained if this were included on the album.

Pearly OK Computer could have been a bloated double album like  the Smashing Pumpkins’ Melancholy and the Infinite Sadness, but instead Radiohead released a bunch of EP’s and B-sides to accompany the album. A pretty smart move in my opinion. This period also featured my favorite cover art by Stanley Donwood. I would get chills looking at the album art as I spaced out on my headphones.

Worrywort This one sounds like a video game. Very mellow, but also a good message in the lyrics. I spent a great deal of my early 20’s with the Amnesiac B-sides playing through my earphones.

Punchdrunk Lovesick Singalong This one is a slow build, but its climax is glorious. I may or may not have put this on a mix CD for a girl in college.

Fog  Probably the second best B-side the band has ever done. For some reason they really don’t dig the studio version–which I love. “Hey man!You like Radiohead? Have you ever heard the studio version of Fog? I mean have you ever heard the studio version of Fog….. ON WEEEEEDDD?”

Talk show Host The first time I heard this song was on a field trip to Houston. One of the girls in the van convinced the business teacher to put the Romeo and Juliet Soundtrack. I dug it immediately,( but was still a closet Radiohead fan) so I filed it to memory, and bought the cassette tape at Sam Goody the following week. Probably one of the sexiest songs ever written. The girls in the audience went crazy when they played this on the OK Computer tour.

Million Dollar Question  Maybe the best B-side from Pablo Honey. The bassline during the bridge is phenomenal. The breakdown at the end is pretty fun as well.

 

 

Honorable Mention

Banana Co. This one has that trademark Jonny Greenwood guitar solo that earmarks the mid 90’s era. Its not their best B-side, but its a hard one for me to skip when it comes up on a playlist.

Butcher This is a good one from the King of Limbs sessions. Instead of doing a full album with everything they recorded this session, they put out a couple of EP’s to accompany the album. This song may have been as good as anything from The King of Limbs

Lull  (4:27) A great song to wake up to in the morning. This was usually the first thing I heard before heading off to Biology class.

I Will (L.A. Version)  My preference to the one released on the Hail to the Thief album. Colin Greenwood’s bass playing adds another dimension to it. They probably took it out because it sounded too much like something they would play.

Transatlantic Drawl Feedback, and a killer bassline make this song a nice change of pace for the Kid A/Amnesiac sessions. They do get a little weird with some effects at the end. I think my brain would have exploded had I heard this on either album.

How I Made My Millions One of the more beautiful songs to never be developed. The band says they simply can’t add anything to it.

Palo Alto An upbeat rocker that is a great number to throw on during your Saturday morning cleaning.

Cuttooth The B-side that bred the lyrics to Myxomatosis. Good work by the rhythm section on this one.

Meeting in The Aisle Precursor to the direction that the band was going during the Kid A/Amnesiac sessions.

Kinetic A very haunting industrial track. Its a grower for sure. Best listened to on headphones.

Maquiladora This song really captures the three guitar attack best.

Yes I am This is nice groove with a little bit of whine and cheese to it. Jonny’s guitar playing provides a nice edge to it that keeps it from sounding like old Pavement.

Permanent Daylight This was before they killed their guitars, played super repetitive melodies on piano, and built their songs around that riff. This is another echo of a distant time, evoking a bit of Sonic Youth.

Company

4 Jun

So easy to love

the sound of your adorable laugh.

You placated my silly, frustrated rants;

railing about our classmates’ hacky stories

over post workshop drinks at

the bar across the street from campus.

 

We’d amicably disagree over we liked most,

which classmates we found irritating,

whose comments were the most annoying,

and which classmate would make a fun date.

 

For being old friends,

we barely knew each other,

but now was our chance

to share our mutual disasters;

both being newly single.

 

It didn’t bother me that half the time

you asked me to hang out was to push away

any lonely feelings you were having.

 

I liked the company.

Being with you was easy

and it was fun. And for the most part

it was innocent.

 

I loved you differently

than the rest of the girls I spent my

time chasing–the ones you’d listen to me

bitch about while you rubbed my scalp.

 

I just wanted you to be happy.

Most guys back then were terrible for you

(Including myself).

 

When you moved,

you were alone again.

We emailed and talked

(Back when I liked using telephones).

 

I came around when I could.

 

The distance and abstinence

created some funny feelings.

I blame it on the turn of the seasons.

 

When we were drunk and in the hot tub,

I (unsuccessfully) fought the urge to kiss you

because it felt so predictable.

You turned away

and I was worried that the rest of the night would be awkward.

But we held hands in the car,

at the stop lights,

while I drove you home.

“Two hands on the wheel.”

You said,

“The 10 and the 2.”

 

There was no pressure.

I had my own plans after school

and you were living yours.

It was always laughs

until it got serious–

until it got awkward.

Our comically bad attempts at romance

only seem funny now.

 

I’m not sure how many nights of watching

Home Movies in your bed happened, before I started

wondering about what else was out there–

beyond our lunches and dinners–

you begging me to engage you in some entertaining

conversation.

 

And maybe I was unstable.

But stability wasn’t in staying.

The stability was in leaving

because you wouldn’t give me a reason to stay.

 

We both knew the outcome.

I knew the score, and 

I wasn’t going to stay around

for someone whose defenses 

mirrored the ’85 Chicago Bears.

 

As much as I liked the heavy petting,

you can’t win a super bowl settling for field goals.

I saw myself as more of a full time starter

than a stop gap backup QB.

 

I knew that you loved me

but you no longer needed me

and I no longer needed you.

I only needed somewhere I could settle

once settling was no longer an option with you.

 

 

~Edward Austin Robertson

 

 

When You Were a Bike Ride Away (For Audrye)

4 Jun

I denied you.

Wrote you off.

Jerked you around.

Fibbed to you.

Took you for granted.

Took advantage of your generosity.

Abused your kindness.

Used your body.

And yet. And Yet.

Our friendship endured.

 

My restlessness,

and curiosity

turned what once was a hike across the cemetery–or a ten minute bike ride,

into a 400 dollar flight

full of questions and complications.

 

I miss the convenience.

The late night walks alone

wondering how you felt, how I felt,

on my way home after

the old movies that I couldn’t just watch with anyone,

the music that I just couldn’t share with anybody,

the dark jokes that only you would roll your eyes at.

I loved that I was absurd, impractical, and ridiculous.

And I think you secretly found it exciting and unpredictable.

 

Your practicality that once repelled me,

only makes you seem more of an attraction.

I once wondered if you wanted enough out of life

but maybe I was too complicated–

shirking anything in life that resembled simplicity.

Maybe it felt too natural.

So easy that it scared me.

 

Had I bought in then,

what would it have guaranteed?

Would you (or I) even believe me if I said

I’m all in now?

So many changes that are

the result of so many failed experiments;

necessary experiences that

only strengthened my resolve

for things I know now to be real.

Your love was not enough then,

and my lust ebbed and flowed with the wind.

 

Fast forward to today.

Where I finally have the space to appreciate

how much we shared.

The real part.

The part that makes me wonder

what it would be like

if you were still only a bike ride away.

 

~Edward Austin Robertson

 

Concentric Circles (For Travis L.)

4 Jun

I instinctively reached out to turn the dial when Glenn Frey started singing.

Brought back memories, that eased my hands back onto the steering wheel,

thoughts of driving through backwoods; similar to the roads back home.

 

Maybe music was just as much about memory as it was taste.

I hated the Eagles.

But I had to admit they were always on the radio

during those times in my life

when we were forced to make interesting things happen

(not always for the best).

 

Sometimes the best parts of the week were spent

carpooling to community college,

crumpling herb on the outsides of CD cases,

rolling doobies on the insides of CD booklets.

Idling through the car wash machine

dropping acid and

plotting the next 2-3 years of our lives.

 

Our social circles expand,

then tighten,

then constrict some more.

 

Phone calls become emails, become texts on birthday,

and special occasions–

which become likes to status updates on Facebook.

And that is life.

It is perfectly normal to still love those who aren’t around

in your everyday.

A thought that willed me to turn the station to something more palatable.

 

~Edward Austin Robertson

Angelitos Negros

4 Jun

He knew that even if they took his belt, that they couldn’t take his title. He taught us that honor, integrity, dignity, and self respect aren’t things that can be given or taken away. He was always the Champion because he lived as one. Thank you for everything, Muhammad Ali. You left us with so much to consider and pass on.

 

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