Pandora the radio played a song that was sort of up the ol’ alley. Nothing earth-shatteringly amazing, but you know, pleasant to listen to.
Then I go read the Nick Sylvester P-fork review from 2005 and I feel so embarrassed for him. Like someone just discovered the power of the internet to just poop on the world. Just incredibly mean-spirited, trying so hard, arbitrary, and sad.
It is sad to realize that my anticipation when listening to terrible tracks of how pained UC would be when he eventually would listen and be forced to describe is pain in hilarious words, and thinking about what he would say when reading terrible, terrible prose regaling in these same tracks, was really what made Pitchfork Cobaggery Watch enjoyable. Anyhow, I just breezed through the top 30 this year for THROWBACK THURSDAY.
30. A. G. Cook “Beautiful” Pinko Punko says: Chipmunk Speak N’ Spell Stacey Q. Andrew Ryce almost begs for forgiveness having to polish this sort of turd. It’s an OK gimmick sort of for a dance track, but I sort of wonder why it is worthy of any comment at all.
29. Spoon “Do You” Pinko Punko says: Spoon have been so good for so long, a new ultra polished and evolved perfectly constructed record from them doesn’t seem to demand the attention it deserves. The new one is better than the last one and I can’t wedge my schedule to listen to it much, but it is typically excellent. I like “New York Kiss” for a Spoon track with non-Spoon sounds.
28. Grouper “Holding” Pinko Punko says: Super beautiful hushed vocals over spare, repetitive piano. It is a different universe from the usual list filler. I’m sort of surprised that this sort of song would be considered- where is the shiny gimmick so attractive to the internet?
As I consider whether it is possible to consider this year’s Pitchfork Top 100 Tracks list, I found this detritus in the draft pile. 2012!!!! Where did the time go? I can only remember two of these 30 songs.
100. Swearin’ “Just” Pinko Punko says: Everything old is new, but in an OK way. Bettie Serveert+Velocity Girl maybe, with something else 90s that I can’t place when it goes to the guy verse. I feel the hopefulness of a new list in bloom. I feel young I feel free, let’s go down to the Newbury Comics and buy CDs!
I need to be honest, this feature is less fun for probably two reasons, one UC doesn’t make me laugh nonstop anymore, though I know he would if he could, but also that the music this last year seemed just so boring. The inexplicable and the terrible have been replaced by the sadly predictable. Minimally, if we are gonna stay in this game, we should at least bring back this feature– where the mean record store clerk gives an internal monologue for your purchases. The best part is we could all hammer our favorite albums
100. Thundercat “For Love (I Come Your Friend)” PP says: The intro on this is very free-form Spinal Tap jazz odyssey. Now I am wondering if this is a Destroyer-level joke/awesome ironic/serious take on something, but now I feel like it is cool kid irony reversal, make something so uncool that you can reverse direction on a dime and declare it cool when nobody is looking, guaranteeing that you will lead the charge. My feelings on this: jazz fusion is either great forever, or mostly never, but it is one or the other, and if you can’t explain it without using the context “no, this is cool now because it isn’t cool” then it is probably just a noodly wank. Novelty mixtape trashbin material, but inoffensive.
PITCHFORK writes the Andrew W.K. apologia. WE JUST DIDN’T GET YOU ANDREW W.K.!!!! Compare to Ry Schry’s original take:
And yet, some of these ‘punk’ and ‘indie’ kids are still willing to back WK up with a number of ridiculous excuses that they deep-down know are inherently flawed. “It’s catchy” is no kind of argument. Every pop song you’ve ever truly hated is catchy. “It’s ironic” is wack, too, since there’s exactly zero irony to be had on any of I Get Wet or in WK’s motivational interviews. “It’s fun” is about the only legitimate excuse a guy could come up with– and that’s the one thing I’ll give it to warrant the .6 in the rating– but this world of music which history has graced us with is loaded with fun music. Even fun music with substance, fun music that doesn’t talk to you like you’re some kinda total dipshit that wouldn’t know Boredoms from buzzworthy. And you don’t even have to look that hard! So then, what is the excuse for a typically elitist music nerd to bow to Andrew WK’s blistering tard-rock? That’s right, folks: there isn’t one.
SHORTER SHREIBER: “YOU, READING THIS, YOU AREN’T AN IDIOT, ARE YOU? I MEAN I CLEARLY DON’T THINK YOU ARE, AND SINCE YOU AREN’T, YOU CLEARLY DON’T LIKE ANDREW W.K., DO YOU? I KNEW YOU DIDN’T. THANK GOD WE GOT PREVIEW COPIES OF THE LATEST BOREDOMS 7 INCH FROM THE FUTURE. IN FACT I HAVE BUILT A TIME MACHINE TO ENSURE THAT IT IS NEVER RELEASED AND YOU SHALL NEVER HEAR OF IT. I WILL DESCRIBE IT TO YOU IN WAYS THAT YOU SHALL NOT UNDERSTAND, BUT SURELY YOU WILL RECOGNIZE HOW MUCH IT MAKES YOU A DIPSHIT.” Continue reading ‘Oh Ian Cohen-This is a Bridge Too Far’
UC chastised me for participating in Le Pitchfork’s People’s List, where everyone got to vote for their favorite albums from Pitchfork’s existence. They said they’d take all the data and present it in super cool ways. Instead, they show some top 20 lists parsed by some geography and a few questions (most listened to genre). For the whole shebang they give the top 200 albums on a nice looking page and a graph where they break the thing down by albums from year with a table or so about some of the data. They just seemed like they failed. Where they succeeded is I assume some information harvesting app because they required voting through social media sites. Who knows. UC and I kind of had a group vote- we traded suggestions back and forth with arcane rules for vetoes etc.,
Suggestions for what would have been actually cool:
1) Top 1000 or even 2000 albums- nothing in the top 200 is surprising so much, but it would be interesting to know what albums were in the next pockets of interest (since there were tons of albums voted for) and a great way to remember some albums that have maybe fallen off.
2) Top write-in albums (bunch of well known albums were not in their database) UPDATE- OOPS- they did have this one. This was a little bit sad because these should have been in the database- I would have liked to see how many of the top 200 were suggested in their pages for the top rated albums- perhaps a little selection bias maybe
TOP-VOTED WRITE-IN ALBUMS
PAVEMENT BRIGHTEN THE CORNERS
REFUSED THE SHAPE OF PUNK TO COME
LAURYN HILL THE MISEDUCATION OF LAURYN HILL
BRAND NEW THE DEVIL AND GOD ARE RAGING INSIDE ME
PULP THIS IS HARDCORE
QUEENS OF THE STONE AGE RATED R
DEFTONES WHITE PONY
JAY-Z REASONABLE DOUBT
BEASTIE BOYS HELLO NASTY
PAVEMENT TERROR TWILIGHT
THE WHITE STRIPES DE STIJL
DELTRON 3030 DELTRON 3030
DR. DRE 2001
SLEATER-KINNEY DIG ME OUT
MUSE ORIGIN OF SYMMETRY
THE VERVE URBAN HYMNS
JIMMY EAT WORLD CLARITY
3) Distribution of rankings for albums in the top 20 at least (kind of like how IMDB lets you look at distribution of scores for movies- and then gives some demographic breakdowns).
4) A selection of some people’s number 1s that didn’t make the top 200 and their comments. People’s comments were a nice feature. I presume they harvested a ton of comments from people on albums they love, yet they only used 10 of them. It is nice to see regular people write about stuff without trying too hard (™ Grayson Currin writing about metal, Ian Cohen writing about re-releases, maybe anyone at Pitchfork?).
5) They had one small list of albums that scored OK but had no number 1 votes. That was interesting. They could have had more breakdowns along these lines.
6) Maybe geography by state instead of two entries for NYC (holla Brooklyn!)
There is something that always gets me when I happen to hear that a musical artist of some kind has died from a DJ who then proceeds to play a song by them. This was the very first song I heard on the radio leaving work today, having tuned to robo-oldies (recorded maybe on the moon, but with DJs, so they always throw in some sort of thing that convinces you that they were recorded on this calendar day), and today it was el DJ stating that Davy Jones had died in his same robo-current events factoid voice. He did mention that this was one of their biggest hits, and I guess it was (number one on Cashbox). Different oldies stations have different faves, so I grew up with “Last Train to Clarksville” getting the most play, then “I’m a Believer” but Smashmouth put me off that one. This station here tends to play “Daydream Believer” most of all, and maybe the other “Believer” and I guess occasionally “Pleasant Valley Sunday.” Nobody every seems to play “Valleri”. So I was confronted not really with my own mortality here, but with my parents’, as Davy Jones was essentially their age and not only that he was one of those types that had the air of forever youngness. You can really hear the Neil Diamond in this song, also lots of little bits from a number of songs, but “Cherry Cherry” is what you hear in the strum strum at the beginning and middle, but then it goes into all these other places that sound familiar and exquisitely poppy. OK maybe a little bit is I remember Davy Jones on Scooby Doo.
We previously sprung the rest of the Top Tracks of 2010 as placed on a Ritz cracker by Pitchfork back in surprisingly April. The list was here, but maybe it is so old it might 404????? Just kidding, I finished the top 10 tonight. I had to get myself in shape for 2011’s list, soon to be released. UC, are you joining us?
And off we go!!!!!!!!
20. Erykah Badu “Window Seat” Pinko Punko says:Sounds like a Erykah Badu singing over a vaguely Massive Attack “Protection”-like beat with some Quiet Storm like touches. OK but so unmemorable I forgot to do this list until November or read anything about why this song is supposedly exceptional.
In the past week, Internet sleuths have pointed out that the release of many Jay-Z albums have coincided with some national or international calamity, 9/11 not excluded. Watch the Throne is no exception: its release on the same day as yet another catastrophic stock market downturn has led some critics to conclude that the pair’s boasts of obscene wealth is out of step with the times. That’s a fair case to make.
Pugsley does not try to poop so hard if he ate a gallon of cashews. How about this:
In the past week, Internet sleuths have pointed out that the release of many Jay-Z albums have coincided with some national or international calamity, 9/11 not excluded. Watch the Throne is no exception: its release on the same day as yet Robbie Keane’s signing with the LA Galaxy has led some other MLS’ team fans to conclude that the pair’s boasts of obscene wealth is out of step with the times. That’s a fair case to make.
In the past week, Internet sleuths have pointed out that the release of many Jay-Z albums have coincided with some national or international calamity, 9/11 not excluded. Watch the Throne is no exception: its release on the same day as yet another Carl’s Jr. mixup of a turkey burger in place of a teriyaki burger has led some eaters to conclude that the pair’s boasts of obscene wealth is out of step with the times. That’s a fair case to make.
In the past week, Internet sleuths have pointed out that the release of many Jay-Z albums have coincided with some national or international calamity, 9/11 not excluded. Watch the Throne is no exception: its release on the same day as yet another internet music related site hires Tom Breihan has led some blogs to conclude that the pair’s boasts of obscene wealth is out of step with the times. That’s a fair case to make.
I have a personal adage, I use when I am working with my clients. When I feel they are pursuing something that they shouldn’t, I make my best arguments against three times, in forceful but respectful fashion. If, after all of that (and I have documented history of telling them it was a bad […]