Friday, May 13, 2005

The Way Things Aught To Be, Disc 1

Meme courtesy of CDB at Thought for the Day, in a post from May 9th:

So, I was pondering, I made my best of the 1990s CDs, but what about the best of the first half of the 2000s (The Aughts, the DoubleO's, what the hell are we calling this decade anyway?) I humbly submit to you my 2-disc set, "The Way Things Aught To Be"

The Rules:
* All songs released on an album between 2000-2004
* No more than one song per artist, no matter how much you want to double up.
* Must fit on two standard 80 minute CDs.
* Beyond that, it's stuff I like, but also stuff I thought other people would know. I'm not trying to expand anyone's musical tastes here, if it happens, bully.

I followed these rules... except that I didn't bother with worrying about what other people would know. The chronology (by year) rule was stated explicitly but I have assumed it. Also it wasn't a rule that there could be no overlap of songs and a maximum overlap of 2 bands... it just turned out that way. While I'm at it I'll point out that Greg at Fraught! has already followed suit, also in two parts. The overlap here is 5 bands but still no songs. (Total overlap is 1 band.)

Disc 1 - 1:19:24
  1. "Aeiral" by Discount (Crash Diagnostic, 2000) - 1:28 - Yes, I had to include two stunning vocal performances by Alison Mosshart. Most of their material is more straightforward J Church-like skate punk... but this is something entirely different, more jarring. And blissfully short.
  2. "3rd Planet" by Modest Mouse (The Moon & Antarctica, 2000) - 3:58 - I liked the Mouse before this came out but it was this track that threw the hook in. And I absolutely love the lyrics.
  3. "Commercial for Levi" by Placebo (Black Market Music, 2000) - 2:20 - Another song with just stunning lyrics. Any song that pleads "please don't die" is alright in my book.
  4. "Algeria" by JJ72 (JJ72, 2000) - 3:21 - I could've picked most anything from either of their albums (can you guess that I'm eagerly awaiting their new album due sometime this year?) Soaring and aggressive BritPop courtesy of Ireland.
  5. "Pattern Against User" by At the Drive-In (Relationship of Command, 2000) - 3:17 - And we are officially rocking.
  6. "Bohemian Like You" by the Dandy Warhols (Thirteen Tales from Urban Bohemia, 2000) - 3:31 - Yes, this is almost a radio-ready song but a little of that is allowed and there just isn't room for Godless.
  7. "Milkshakes and Honey" by Sleater-Kinney (All Hands on the Bad One, 2000) - 2:55 - This one was a brutal choice with two fantastic eligible albums. I decided to essentially punt it and go with what I've always claimed to be my favorite from this one. I'm not sure exactly why I like this song this much but it is different and fun.
  8. "Chartsengrafs" by Grandaddy (The Sophtware Slump, 2000) - 2:51 - This, despite being a fantastic song, almost got cut because of the 30 or so seconds of near dead air for an intro. The latest plan was switching to shorter songs for a couple other bands and replacing this with "Used to Know Her" by Vercua Salt... but the losses were too great. And Grandaddy deserves a song here.
  9. "Thirteen Gliding Principles" by the Delgados (The Great Eastern, 2000) - 3:44 - Everything I loved about the Delgados with vocals from Alun and Emma.
  10. "White Palms" by Black Rebel Motorcycle Club (BRMC, 2001) - 4:55 - The longest song that made the cut. I really enjoy how it fits between 9 and 11, with a slow but charging dirty guitar opening to it's beautiful fadeout leading into the peaceful portion of teh disc.
  11. "Grace Cathedral Hill" by the Decemberists (Castaways and Cutouts, 2001) - 4:28 - Absolutely beautiful. The Decemberists have shorter songs - again two albums of goodness - but I have no regret about choosing this one.
  12. "Fresh One" by Sodastream (The Hill for Company, 2001) - 3:41 - Better than any eligible Belle & Sebastian and the only Australian band represented.
  13. "I Can't Wait" by the White Stripes (White Blood Cells, 2001) - 3:39 - Should I have included Hotel Yorba as it was both my introduction and early favorite? No as this is a much more complete song. Plus it works the volume back to a reasonable level.
  14. "FYR" by Le Tigre (The Feminist Sweepstakes, 2001) - 2:39 - OK, fine, maybe I'm cheating by not counting the "joke" or whatever at the end... but it's not really part of the song, right? It's there for the flow of Feminist Sweepstakes, not my comp. So I can cut it, yes?
  15. "Pills" by Les Savy Fav (Go Forth, 2001) - 3:29 - This is mindbogglingly good. I don't know what LSF are doing but they keep doing it. Aggressive and wild and brilliant. I cannot fail to mention the instrumental bridge at 0:45-0:56.
  16. "Pressed in a Book" by the Shins (Oh, Inverted World, 2001) - 2:55 - I like Caring Is Creepy better but this one fits better... not that it's much of a sacrifice.
  17. "Nite and Fog" by Mercury Rev (All Is Dream, 2001) - 3:58 - The Rev don't quite fit the bluprint for this CD set but... well, it'll give variety, yes? Also I didn't even really consider including something from Yoshimi as a replacement.
  18. "Twee" by Tullycraft (Beat Surf Fun, 2002) - 3:23 - And we open 2002 with whimsical and nostalgic twee.
  19. "The Get Away" by Pretty Girls Make Graves (Good Health, 2002) - 4:15 - There are songs that are both shorter and more aggressive but this is easily my favorite. I love the lyrics.
  20. "Evergreen" by Angelica (The Seven Year Itch, 2002) - 4:04 - I almost relented and went to the 51 second Golden Lillies (with guest vocals by Kat Bjelland) but I just couldn't. This is my favorite Angelica song and if I were to knock out a ranked top 500 (or whatever) list Vegas would have even money on this coming out on top. Dual lead vocals and again, stunning lyrics. This is the song that got me to travel to Lancaster, UK to catch their final show.
  21. "Everywhere with Helicoptor" by Guided by Voices (Universal Truths and Cycles, 2002) - 2:36 - An easy choice and not just because it is mercifully short. An easy slotting choice as well as I first saw GBV on their tour for this album in London on the same trip I saw Angelica.
  22. "Lover I Don't Have to Love" by Bright Eyes (Lifted or the Story is the Soil, 2002) - 4:00 - Achingly beautiful song. I resisted Bright Eyes for a long time... but a downloaded version of this song along with "Waste of Paint" from Austin City Limits has won me over.
  23. "I'm the Man Who Loves You" by Wilco (Yankee Hotel Foxtrot, 2002) - 3:57 - This is a bit of a false victory as it's here because it's shorter than two better options (spanning both eligible CDs)... but this is still no slouch of song. It's still good enough to defend taking up near 4 minutes.
In the interest of sleeping tonight I need to hold off on releasing Disc 2 until..., well, hopefully Saturday afternoon. It is all but done (there is still some question on the order of the 2004 songs but they're all locked in) but I'm not up for completing the write-up at this time.


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