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The Year In Music

This year was an interesting music year. I’m going to tackle this chronologically, as it was added to my library, not the year it was released. I’m not as “on it” as I used to be, so it takes a while longer for me to find stuff. In fact, most of the music that I found this year was through turntable.fm. These aren’t really “reviews”, as you can find better reviews from professionals or even on Pitchfork.

January

I bought The Wombats Proudly Present…This Modern Glitch by The Wombats. I haven’t listened to it a lot since then.

That was it for January.

February

This is when I finally broke down and accepted LCD Soundsystem into my life. Steven made sure I kept my Britpop membership up to date with The Big Pink (Future This and A Brief History of Love) and Sleigh Bells released a new album, Reign of Terror. I’ve been listening to all this all year long.

March

The 20th Anniversary of Nevermind was released, making me feel old. I yelled at some kids to get off my lawn and felt a lot better. For some reason I thought it would be a good idea to pick up Siberia by Lights. Other than that, not much happened.

April

Future Islands was new to me, as was their album In Evening Air.

May

My friend Angela really wanted to go see AWOLNATION, and Megalithic Symphony was on special at the Amazon MP3 Store. After that, it was mostly bands I heard on turntable.fm: Eight And A Half with their self-titled debut, Miike Snow – Happy To You, Oberhofer – Time Capsules II, and Santigold – Master of My Make-Believe. I also added The Sounds – Dying To Say This To You and Garbage – Not Your Kind of People.

June

At long last, The Hives graced us with a new album, and what an album it was. Lex Hives was easily my most listened to new music in 2012. Overshadowed by this towering release of rock ‘n’ roll was Metric – Synthetica, Japandroids – Celebration Rock, and Fun. – Some Nights. I also finally got around to adding M83 – Hurry Up We’re Dreaming to the collection.

July

I added nothing to the collection in July. Well, that’s not entirely true. I downloaded the free track Lots from the then upcoming Dan Deacon album America. It’s really good.

August

Bloc Party – Four was an interesting release. I got immediately hooked on a couple of tracks but the rest of the album didn’t seem to click. It quickly fell by the wayside. Spector – Enjoy It While It Lasts gets my Britpop Album of the Year award. It’s fantastic. I heard of the Neon Trees because they were on tour with The Limousines, so I picked up Picture Show. Yeasayer – Fragrant World was mostly purchased because they were using TopSpin Media. This allows them to sell direct to fans, so they get the bulk of the profit from their work. I love this model. I also got the vinyl.

September

Indie supergroup Divine Fits (I bet they hate the reference “supergroup”) released A Thing Called Divine Fits. It’s pretty good. The Killer released Battle Born. I’m still getting used to it. The Vaccines release Come of Age. I’m still getting used to it.

October

Matt & Kim release Lightning and I’m still dancing. Passion Pit drops Gossamer and I was already tired of Take A Walk. I grabbed Cassius – The Rawkers EP because I <3 U SO.

November

A new to me band, Hooray for Earth and their album True Loves, brought back glorious memories of late 80’s/early 90’s pop music. Amazon finally had a sale on Of Monsters and Men – My Head Is An Animal and I’m already tired of Little Talks. You should also pick up any Swim Deep you can find.

December

This is always Amazon MP3 blowout month. So, I typically pick up a few more albums than I normally would because they’re only $5 or less.

French Reform is actually a Chico band and they’re quite good. I wouldn’t have heard Dan Deacon if it wasn’t for turntable.fm. Bob Mould can still rock. The xx can still calm you down. Crystal Castles can still make you wonder why they don’t fix their equipment. Paul Banks still isn’t Interpol.

Trolling with Interns


November Music Rundown

So, thanks to an anonymous donor, the music collection took quite a bump in November. Let’s take a peek:

  • (Ǎhk-to͝ong Bāy-Bi) Covered / Various Artists (iTunes)
    A bunch of big name (and medium name) bands covering songs from U2’s Achtung Baby. Pretty good stuff.
  • Another Life / Mark Stoermer (web site)
    The bassist from The Killers. It was a free download. It’s really far too mellow rock for me.
  • Different Gear – Still Speeding / Beady Eye (iTunes)
    Ah, Liam Gallagher and the rest of Oasis minus Noel Gallagher. It has moments. Not a huge fan though.
  • A different Kind of Fix / Bombay Bicycle Club (iTunes)
    Indie rock out of North London. You can tell they grew up on Lush and other shoe gazer bands of the 90’s.
  • The Drums / The Drums (iTunes)
    I guess this is “indie rock”, but if you really miss old, poppy Cure and New Order then this is for you.
  • Elsie / The Horrible Crowes (iTunes)
    Soft rock, stick with The National instead.
  • Foxy Shazam / Foxy Shazam (iTunes)
    Do you miss Queen and Journey? Give this a listen.
  • Hunger / Frankie & The Heartstrings (iTunes)
    Do you miss the Jam, even though you thought it was too punk?
  • Junk of the Heart / The Kooks (iTunes)
    You either like his voice or you don’t.
  • Killer Sounds / Hard-Fi (UK only at the moment)
    A strong follow to ‘Once Upon A Time In The West’
  • Noel Gallagher’s High Flying Birds / Noel Gallagher’s High Flying Birds (iTunes)
    These solo efforts from the Gallagher brothers show that Oasis was far more than the sum of its parts. Like Beady Eye above, it has moments…
  • Psycho Jukebox / Jon Fratelli (iTunes)
    I do miss The Fratellis, but they’re gone. It’s time to move on and this is a good album, just don’t expect the edge of The Fratellis. It’s like Jon “grew up” or something.
  • Romance Is Boring / Los Campesinos! (iTunes)
    Fun indie rock on the edgy guitar side with catchy vocals.
  • Ungrateful / Frankie & The Heartstrings (UK only at the moment)
    I would bet money these guys opened for Billy Brag in some nowhere club in London once.

Remembering

We were living in San Rafael. I was working for a company in San Francisco that my friends, and in-laws, had started. We always left pretty early to beat the traffic over the Golden Gate and to get a parking space at the office. In the morning I would usually flip on the local news to get a quick peek at traffic. The worst traffic was always on the Sunol Grade. The second worst was everything coming into the Bay Bridge. We didn’t have to deal with either of those, but I liked to check the traffic report anyway.

“The lane is cleared, but the damage is done.” That was always the refrain from the reporter in the traffic helicopter. I’m pretty sure I heard that exact phrase, “…but the damage is done”, every morning that I checked on the traffic.

But that morning there was a bigger story. Something terrible had happened and at that time nobody was sure exactly what or how it happened. I caught a glimpse of the smoke pouring out of the first tower and it didn’t even occur to me what the reality of the situation was. Before we left the house the second tower was hit. Even to the people that were clinging to the idea that the first tower was just a terrible accident, the second tower made it very clear that this was no accident.

I can’t really explain why we left the house to go to work. In retrospect it seems beyond foolish. Perhaps we were in shock, unable to comprehend the situation fully. Maybe I just wanted to be at work, where I knew my friends would be and we could sort it out there.

The commute in was quick, of course. Seeing a scrambled jet flying over the Golden Gate as we crossed still didn’t register the gravity of the situation. Again, I can only assume we were in a state of shock. I dropped Kat off at 5th and Bryant, the “WIRED building”, and headed back up to 6th and Folsom to open the office. We had lots of internet, but no cable TV. We had a television for the game consoles, so we rigged an antennae as best we could to get the local station over the air. It wasn’t great, but it was something. Most of the news sites online were getting crushed and would barely load, if they responded at all.

More and more people staggered in, and they all had to same look on their faces. It was disbelief, combined with terrible sadness. The rage had not set in, yet. We had two New Yorkers working in the office and they were frantically trying to reach people back in Manhattan with little luck. Everybody knew someone or knew someone that knew someone that was in Manhattan.

The news that all air traffic in the US was grounded and that fighter jets were patrolling hit the office. They started telling people to go home and then we realized that we might be stuck in the city if they closed the Golden Gate. It was an potential target. We were surrounded by potential targets. I called Kat and got down to her office as quick as I could and we got across before the bridge was closed.

I honestly can’t remember much of the rest of the day. I’m sure it consisted of being glued to the television and waiting for the CNN site to recover from the traffic surge. I do remember being scared of the wave of rage that I knew was about to hit us.

The Big 2010 Music Wrap-Up

What follows is a rambling, incoherent mess of music that I acquired in 2010. Some of the notes are interspersed with the list and some are at the end. It really just depended on how I was feeling about that particular batch of albums. Some random numbers for 2010: 1073 “songs”, 3.1 “days” of music that takes up 8.17GB.

January

Contra is really a good album. It took a while to grow on me, but Giving Up The Gun was an instant hit. Low vs Diamond was fun at first, but it just doesn’t have any staying power. For that matter, neither did Manchester Orchestra. The OK Go album was really not what I was expecting. It takes a much mellower tone than their previous work and I guess I wasn’t ready for what they had to offer this time.

February

March

April

May

We Have Band and Phantogram were recommended based on Cut Copy. Neither are as good. I also finally got into The National and they skyrocketed up the play count chart.

June

I grabbed two more from The National and Alligator is just a phenomenal album. It’s more “rock” than a lot of their more recent stuff, so be warned if all you know is High Violet. The Chemical Brothers continue to put out the same album, and for some reason I continue to buy them. Orbital, just when I think they’ve retired for good they put out an amazing single. Goldfrapp has gone a bit soft, so if you really liked Black Cherry or Supernature, you might not dig this one.

July

Holy crap do I want a new Hives album to come out. The Black and White album came out in 2007. Sleigh Bells was a nice treat and it sounds like The Spice Girls teamed up with Ministry and rocked the hell out. Harlowe is nice and mellow and How to Destroy Angels is your typical Trent Reznor side project.

August

The Wolf Parade album is good, but not quite as good as Apologies to The Queen Mary and The Love Language reminds me a lot of Arcade Fire.

September

I’m not sure why I don’t like James anymore, because they used to be one of my favorite bands. Nothing on this most recent album really grabs me. The Interpol album is okay, but not great. Underworld did a bang up job on Barking. Brandon Flowers really needs The Killers. Weezer is Weezer. In the Hall of the Mountain King from The Social Network soundtrack is great.

October

Kat found Starfucker and these two albums are quite enjoyable.

November

Please get everything by Matt & Kim that you can, it’s great stuff. Yes, I bought the Kanye album…what?

December

Pick of the bunch is The Limousines and you should really see their video for Internet Killed the Video Star

The 2009 Non Wrap-Up

I was going to do a big 2009 music wrap-up post, just like [jwz does](http://www.jwz.org/gruntle/music2009.html). But, yeah…that hasn’t happened. I did spend a little time hacking up some code to help me generate Last.fm links for all the music I did come across in 2009. So, at least there’s that. Or rather, this:

* [A Fine Frenzy](http://www.last.fm/music/A+Fine+Frenzy) — [Bomb In A Birdcage](http://www.last.fm/music/A+Fine+Frenzy/Bomb+In+A+Birdcage)
* [Arctic Monkeys](http://www.last.fm/music/Arctic+Monkeys) — [Humbug](http://www.last.fm/music/Arctic+Monkeys/Humbug)
* [Danger Mouse & Sparklehorse](http://www.last.fm/music/Danger%2BMouse%2B%2526%2BSparklehorse) — [Dark Night of the Soul](http://www.last.fm/music/Danger%2BMouse%2B%2526%2BSparklehorse/Dark+Night+of+the+Soul)
* [Depeche Mode](http://www.last.fm/music/Depeche+Mode) — [Sounds Of The Universe](http://www.last.fm/music/Depeche+Mode/Sounds+Of+The+Universe)
* [Editors](http://www.last.fm/music/Editors) — [In This Light and On This Evening](http://www.last.fm/music/Editors/In+This+Light+And+On+This+Evening)
* [Franz Ferdinand](http://www.last.fm/music/Franz+Ferdinand) — [Blood: Franz Ferdinand](http://www.last.fm/music/Franz+Ferdinand/Blood%3A+Franz+Ferdinand)
* [Franz Ferdinand](http://www.last.fm/music/Franz+Ferdinand) — [Tonight: Franz Ferdinand](http://www.last.fm/music/Franz+Ferdinand/Tonight%3A+Franz+Ferdinand)
* [Grand Duchy](http://www.last.fm/music/Grand+Duchy) — [Petits Fours](http://www.last.fm/music/Grand+Duchy/Petits+fours)
* [Green Day](http://www.last.fm/music/Green+Day) — [21st Century Breakdown](http://www.last.fm/music/Green+Day/21st+Century+Breakdown)
* [Jamie T](http://www.last.fm/music/Jamie+T) — [Kings & Queens](http://www.last.fm/music/Jamie+T/Kings%2B%2526%2BQueens)
* [Jay-Z](http://www.last.fm/music/Jay-Z) — [The Blueprint 3](http://www.last.fm/music/Jay-Z/The+Blueprint+3)
* [Jet](http://www.last.fm/music/Jet) — [Shaka Rock](http://www.last.fm/music/Jet/Shaka+Rock)
* [Julian Plenti](http://www.last.fm/music/Julian+Plenti) — [Julian Plenti Is... Skyscraper](http://www.last.fm/music/Julian+Plenti/Julian+Plenti+Is…+Skyscraper)
* [KMFDM](http://www.last.fm/music/KMFDM) — [Blitz](http://www.last.fm/music/KMFDM/Blitz)
* [KMFDM](http://www.last.fm/music/KMFDM) — [Krieg](http://www.last.fm/music/KMFDM/Krieg)
* [Kasabian](http://www.last.fm/music/Kasabian) — [West Ryder Pauper Lunatic Asylum](http://www.last.fm/music/Kasabian/West+Ryder+Pauper+Lunatic+Asylum)
* [La Roux](http://www.last.fm/music/La+Roux) — [La Roux](http://www.last.fm/music/La+Roux/La+Roux)
* [Manchester Orchestra](http://www.last.fm/music/Manchester+Orchestra) — [Mean Everything To Nothing](http://www.last.fm/music/Manchester+Orchestra/Mean+Everything+To+Nothing)
* [Matt & Kim](http://www.last.fm/music/Matt%2B%2526%2BKim) — [Grand](http://www.last.fm/music/Matt%2B%2526%2BKim/Grand)
* [Metric](http://www.last.fm/music/Metric) — [Fantasies](http://www.last.fm/music/Metric/Fantasies)
* [Moby](http://www.last.fm/music/Moby) — [Wait For Me](http://www.last.fm/music/Moby/Wait+For+Me)
* [Morrissey](http://www.last.fm/music/Morrissey) — [Years Of Refusal](http://www.last.fm/music/Morrissey/Years+Of+Refusal)
* [Mos Def](http://www.last.fm/music/Mos+Def) — [The Ecstatic](http://www.last.fm/music/Mos+Def/The+Ecstatic)
* [Ned's Atomic Dustbin](http://www.last.fm/music/Ned%27s+Atomic+Dustbin) — [Session](http://www.last.fm/music/Ned%27s+Atomic+Dustbin/Session)
* [Nosaj Thing](http://www.last.fm/music/Nosaj+Thing) — [Drift](http://www.last.fm/music/Nosaj+Thing/Drift)
* [Passion Pit](http://www.last.fm/music/Passion+Pit) — [Manners](http://www.last.fm/music/Passion+Pit/Manners)
* [Paul Van Dyk](http://www.last.fm/music/Paul+van+Dyk) — [Volume](http://www.last.fm/music/Paul+van+Dyk/Volume)
* [Pet Shop Boys](http://www.last.fm/music/Pet+Shop+Boys) — [Love etc. (remixes)](http://www.last.fm/music/Pet+Shop+Boys/Love+etc.+%28remixes%29)
* [Pet Shop Boys](http://www.last.fm/music/Pet+Shop+Boys) — [Yes](http://www.last.fm/music/Pet+Shop+Boys/Yes)
* [Phoenix](http://www.last.fm/music/Phoenix) — [Wolfgang Amadeus Phoenix (Remix Collection)](http://www.last.fm/music/Phoenix/Wolfgang+Amadeus+Phoenix+%28Remix+Collection%29)
* [Phoenix](http://www.last.fm/music/Phoenix) — [Wolfgang Amadeus Phoenix](http://www.last.fm/music/Phoenix/Wolfgang+Amadeus+Phoenix)
* [Prodigy](http://www.last.fm/music/Prodigy) — [Invaders Must Die](http://www.last.fm/music/Prodigy/Invaders+Must+Die)
* [Rancid](http://www.last.fm/music/Rancid) — [Let the Dominoes Fall](http://www.last.fm/music/Rancid/Let+The+Dominoes+Fall)
* [Skold Vs. KMFDM](http://www.last.fm/music/Skold+vs.+KMFDM) — [Skold Vs. KMFDM](http://www.last.fm/music/Skold+vs.+KMFDM/Skold+Vs.+KMFDM)
* [The Bravery](http://www.last.fm/music/The+Bravery) — [Stir the Blood](http://www.last.fm/music/The+Bravery/Stir+The+Blood)
* [The Crystal Method](http://www.last.fm/music/The+Crystal+Method) — [Divided By Night](http://www.last.fm/music/The+Crystal+Method/Divided+By+Night)
* [The Killers](http://www.last.fm/music/The+Killers) — [Live From The Royal Albert Hall](http://www.last.fm/music/The+Killers/Live+From+The+Royal+Albert+Hall)
* [The Rifles](http://www.last.fm/music/The+Rifles) — [Great Escape](http://www.last.fm/music/The+Rifles/Great+Escape)
* [Them Crooked Vultures](http://www.last.fm/music/Them+Crooked+Vultures) — [Them Crooked Vultures](http://www.last.fm/music/Them+Crooked+Vultures/Them+Crooked+Vultures)
* [U2](http://www.last.fm/music/U2) — [No Line On The Horizon](http://www.last.fm/music/U2/No+Line+On+The+Horizon)
* [Weezer](http://www.last.fm/music/Weezer) — [Raditude](http://www.last.fm/music/Weezer/Raditude)
* [White Lies](http://www.last.fm/music/White+Lies) — [To Lose My Life ...](http://www.last.fm/music/White+Lies/To+Lose+My+Life+…)
* [Yeah Yeah Yeahs](http://www.last.fm/music/Yeah+Yeah+Yeahs) — [It's Blitz!](http://www.last.fm/music/Yeah+Yeah+Yeahs/It%27s+Blitz%21)

It violates all the rules of [High Fidelity](http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0146882/). It’s alphabetized. It has no judgement associated with bands or albums. It’s just a lifeless list. The only thing you have to go on is that at some point in 2009 I thought I might like said band/album and bought it. Some of them weren’t that great. Some I don’t listen to at all anymore. Some I have on near perpetual repeat. How will you know?! You won’t. Sorry, but it’s really not that important.

Still Driving (Part 3)

Previously on Still Driving ([1](http://blog.patandkat.com/2010/02/still-driving-part-1/),[2](http://blog.patandkat.com/2010/02/still-driving-part-2/))…[David Stillman](http://stilldavid.com/) needed music for a road trip that would take him from Chico, CA to Boulder, CO. He would stay mostly on I80. Here is his playlist. Well, the last part at least.

[Meat Beat Manifesto](http://www.last.fm/music/Meat+Beat+Manifesto) — [Satyricon](ttp://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B000T1GQSU?ie=UTF8&tag=pberrywebedit-20&linkCode=as2&camp=1789&creative=390957&creativeASIN=B000T1GQSU) is an amazing piece of work. Jack Dangers, the mad genius behind MBM, should really be considered the father of “Big Beat” and this album clearly laid down the path for others to follow. Countless samples, distorted vox, and beats that refuse to let you sit still. If you’re into any kind of “electronic” music at all, this is a must-listen.

[Morcheeba](http://www.last.fm/music/Morcheeba) — [Big Calm](http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00122ZA14?ie=UTF8&tag=pberrywebedit-20&linkCode=as2&camp=1789&creative=390957&creativeASIN=B00122ZA14) doesn’t fit in any single genre, but if I had to put one word on the label, it would be “chill”. Not “chill” in a boring way, just in a “we’re not going to kill you with guitars, drum loops, or vocals”. Also, the vocals are quite sexy.

[Primus](http://www.last.fm/music/Primus) — [Frizzle Fry](http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B001KWR3MA?ie=UTF8&tag=pberrywebedit-20&linkCode=as2&camp=1789&creative=390957&creativeASIN=B001KWR3MA) is another “you damn kids should know you musical history dammit” selection. And no, I didn’t like [School of Rock](http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0332379/). The chalkboard scene was cool, but a scene does not a movie make.

[The Rifles](http://www.last.fm/music/The+Rifles) — [Great Escape](http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B001PIQ262?ie=UTF8&tag=pberrywebedit-20&linkCode=as2&camp=1789&creative=390957&creativeASIN=B001PIQ262) was passed along to me by Steven because he knows I love britpop. This is great britpop.

[The Sisters Of Mercy](http://www.last.fm/music/The+Sisters+of+Mercy) — [Vision Thing](http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B002RX9KHW?ie=UTF8&tag=pberrywebedit-20&linkCode=as2&camp=1789&creative=390957&creativeASIN=B002RX9KHW) was included just to screw with David. I doubt he liked this at all, but there are some great driving tracks on this album. Also, he wanted stuff that he hadn’t heard before and I’m positive he hadn’t heard this.

[Slipstream](http://www.last.fm/music/Slipstream) — [Be Groovy Or Leave](http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B000TPYSZE?ie=UTF8&tag=pberrywebedit-20&linkCode=as2&camp=1789&creative=390957&creativeASIN=B000TPYSZE). Another europop band that never saw the light of day on this side of the pond. They were a NME poster band for half a week or so, but this album has some catchy tracks. Good britpop, not sure I would call it great though.

[The Stone Roses](http://www.last.fm/music/The+Stone+Roses) — [The Complete Stone Roses](http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00000052M?ie=UTF8&tag=pberrywebedit-20&linkCode=as2&camp=1789&creative=390957&creativeASIN=B00000052M) (CD only) was another “lets suck money from stupid Stone Roses fans while they keep waiting for the mythical ‘Second Coming’ album” label production. The upside was that they actually put tracks on it that weren’t widely available to people. So, that was nice. [The Second Coming](http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B000W271TO?ie=UTF8&tag=pberrywebedit-20&linkCode=as2&camp=1789&creative=390957&creativeASIN=B000W271TO) eventually did come out and everybody panned it because it didn’t sound like the first album. The Stone Roses are an important part of the history lesson of britpop, so this is why it made the playlist. Also, it’s just damn good music.

[Symposium](http://www.last.fm/music/Symposium) — On The Outside (out of print in the US) was in the same vein as Ash, a bunch of kids wailing on guitars making incredibly catching pop-punk. Again, what more do you need?

[The The](http://www.last.fm/music/The+The) — [Dusk](http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00138F4NG?ie=UTF8&tag=pberrywebedit-20&linkCode=as2&camp=1789&creative=390957&creativeASIN=B00138F4NG) was a bit of a stretch. It’s not really pop music at all and I hesitated to put it on the list, but one cannot survive on pop music alone. The lyrics on this album are quite amazing and [Johnny Marr](http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Johnny_Marr) is on guitar.

[Underworld](http://www.last.fm/music/Underworld) — [Dubnobasswithmyheadman](http://itunes.apple.com/us/album/dubnobasswithmyheadman/id322189295) and[ Second Toughest In The Infants](http://itunes.apple.com/us/album/second-toughest-in-infants/id322173305) (iTunes only) are great electronic albums. If you don’t think you’ve heard Underworld, their biggest hit (_Born Slippy (Nuxx)_) plays over the ending credit of _Trainspotting_. They tend to mix into some vocals, which makes it a little more accessible if overly beepy music drives you nuts.

[White Lies](http://www.last.fm/music/White+Lies) — [To Lose My Life ...](http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B001VT1HCO?ie=UTF8&tag=pberrywebedit-20&linkCode=as2&camp=1789&creative=390957&creativeASIN=B001VT1HCO) probably wouldn’t exist if there was no Joy Division. Sure, everybody thinks they’re an Interpol meets The Killers rip-off, but we know better…don’t we.

[Wolf Parade](http://www.last.fm/music/Wolf+Parade) — [Apologies to The Queen Mary](http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B000YN33TI?ie=UTF8&tag=pberrywebedit-20&linkCode=as2&camp=1789&creative=390957&creativeASIN=B000YN33TI) is a bit crazy. There’s this indie-Modest Mouse thing going on, but I think the music is better. It has less “we’re being weird for the sake of being weird” and more “rock music is awesome”.

Still Driving (Part 2)

[Previously on Still Driving](http://blog.patandkat.com/2010/02/still-driving-part-1/)…[David Stillman](http://stilldavid.com/) needed music for a road trip that would take him from Chico, CA to Boulder, CO. He would stay mostly on I80. Here is his playlist. Well, the middle part at least.

[The Final Cut](http://www.last.fm/music/Final+Cut) — [Consumed](http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B002OV8T9C?ie=UTF8&tag=pberrywebedit-20&linkCode=as2&camp=1789&creative=390957&creativeASIN=B002OV8T9C) is hard to explain with going into the history of [Wax Trax! Records](http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wax_Trax!_Records) and more importantly, [Ministry](http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ministry_(band)), but lets assume both of those things are unknown to you. This album is undeniably industrial. Sure, Last.fm has Final Cut classified as an “electronica / (US-)Coldwave-band”, but _this_ album is **industrial**. [Chris Connelly](http://www.last.fm/music/Chris+Connelly), circa 1992, as a guest vocalist should speak volumes on this point. This is such a phenomenal release from that era and it’s so under appreciated that I tend to share it with anybody that can stand distorted vox and a drum machine.

[Fugazi](http://www.last.fm/music/Fugazi) — [13 Songs](http://www.dischord.com/release/036) is such a straight edge classic, how could I not include it?

[Goldfrapp](http://www.last.fm/music/Goldfrapp) — [Supernature](http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B000TEPJSK?ie=UTF8&tag=pberrywebedit-20&linkCode=as2&camp=1789&creative=390957&creativeASIN=B000TEPJSK) Beepy? Check. Sexy vocals? Check. What? You need more?

[Hard-Fi](http://www.last.fm/music/Hard-Fi) — [Once Upon a Time In the West](http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00122DE9E?ie=UTF8&tag=pberrywebedit-20&linkCode=as2&camp=1789&creative=390957&creativeASIN=B00122DE9E) and [Stars of CCTV](ttp://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B001230KSQ?ie=UTF8&tag=pberrywebedit-20&linkCode=as2&camp=1789&creative=390957&creativeASIN=B001230KSQ) I love brit-pop and this is some great brit-pop.

[Joy Division](http://www.last.fm/music/Joy+Division) — [Unknown Pleasures](http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00122OPYW?ie=UTF8&tag=pberrywebedit-20&linkCode=as2&camp=1789&creative=390957&creativeASIN=B00122OPYW) is my attempt to teach these damn kids a thing a two about where their favorite music comes from. Don’t get me wrong, music as any creative medium is, should be expected to be derivative. But, please, credit where credit is due. Just like Kurt Cobain [gave credit to the Pixies](http://www.4ad.com/pixies/ephemera/kurt-cobain-on-p/), we should thank Joy Division for helping give us [U2](http://www.last.fm/music/U2), [The Cure](http://www.last.fm/music/The+Cure), [Bloc Party](http://www.last.fm/music/Bloc+Party), [Editors](http://www.last.fm/music/Editors), and — most importantly to me, [Interpol](http://www.last.fm/music/Interpol).

[Julian Plenti](http://www.last.fm/music/Julian+Plenti) — [Julian Plenti Is... Skyscraper](http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B002HJ70PU?ie=UTF8&tag=pberrywebedit-20&linkCode=as2&camp=1789&creative=390957&creativeASIN=B002HJ70PU) is also the lead singer from Interpol. You know, the band I mentioned above as being really important to me. I’ve said it [before](http://blog.patandkat.com/2009/09/hot-august-tunes/), the first track will _stab you in the heart_. Lyrically speaking, of course.

[Kaiser Chiefs](http://www.last.fm/music/Kaiser+Chiefs) — [Yours Truly, Angry Mob](http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B001O3WNY8?ie=UTF8&tag=pberrywebedit-20&linkCode=as2&camp=1789&creative=390957&creativeASIN=B001O3WNY8) is brit-pop. Enough said. Thanks, Steven!

[Kasabian](http://www.last.fm/music/Kasabian) — [West Ryder Pauper Lunatic Asylum](http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B002B0OVWA?ie=UTF8&tag=pberrywebedit-20&linkCode=as2&camp=1789&creative=390957&creativeASIN=B002B0OVWA) I first heard their track [Club Foot](http://www.last.fm/music/Kasabian/_/Club+Foot) on the tv show Numb3rs and was hooked. Their albums are a bit hit and miss, but this is clearly their strongest effort. Fast Fuse and Fire alone are worth the price of admission.

[Leftfield](http://www.last.fm/music/Leftfield) — [Leftism](http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00138F6UW?ie=UTF8&tag=pberrywebedit-20&linkCode=as2&camp=1789&creative=390957&creativeASIN=B00138F6UW) Toni Halliday and John “Johnny Rotten” Lydon cameo guest vocals on one of the best electronic albums ever released. Don’t just take my word for it though, check the [den of lies](http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Leftism_(album)).

[Low vs Diamond](http://www.last.fm/music/Low+vs+Diamond) — [Low vs Diamond](http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B0018Q4C4A?ie=UTF8&tag=pberrywebedit-20&linkCode=as2&camp=1789&creative=390957&creativeASIN=B0018Q4C4A) is a band that Kat [found on twitter](http://twitter.com/rainnwilson/status/8077922766) thanks to [Rainn Wilson](http://www.soulpancake.com/). His summary was pretty dead on, “kind of Killers meets Muse with an LA indie vibe.”

[Manchester Orchestra](http://www.last.fm/music/Manchester+Orchestra) — [Mean Everything To Nothing](http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B0026NY6M2?ie=UTF8&tag=pberrywebedit-20&linkCode=as2&camp=1789&creative=390957&creativeASIN=B0026NY6M2) despite the name, is not british. In fact, they’re from Atlanta. Yeah, the one in Georgia. With peaches and everything. I picked this up as an Amazon MP3 Deal of the Day because it was cheap and sounded a bit like Silversun Picksups. Good for I80. I think.

_Stay tuned for [part 3](http://blog.patandkat.com/2010/02/still-driving-part-3/) which will take us from M to W_.

Still Driving (Part 1)

Recently [David Stillman](http://stilldavid.com) asked me to provide him with an 4GB iPod Nano worth of music for a drive from Chico, CA to Boulder, CO. Normally I love a challenge such as this, but this wasn’t just a road trip; this was him moving to Boulder. We were all sad to see him go, but happy that he’s embarking on an exciting new chapter in his life that includes lot of snowboarding and making little killer robots.

I wanted to provide him with music that was good for the road, especially I-80, but also new or at least new to him. I also knew that I didn’t really have the time to do a song-by-song playlist, so I loaded him up with whole albums. In fact, I put together the whole list after one of our weekly poker nights. I know I could have done a better job, but as with most things it was better to get him something than nothing at all.

[The Afghan Whigs](http://www.last.fm/music/Afghan+Whigs) — [Gentlemen](http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B001OGLR3S?ie=UTF8&tag=pberrywebedit-20&linkCode=as2&camp=1789&creative=390957&creativeASIN=B001OGLR3S) was originally released in 1993. This was a bit before David was probably into music, let alone what was considered “alternative” at that time. Looking back it’s hard to see how this classification came to be. Wait, [no it isn't](http://www.billboard.com/#/charts/hot-100?chartDate=1993-09-14).

[Ash](http://www.last.fm/music/Ash) — [Trailer & 1997](http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B002ON6MIA?ie=UTF8&tag=pberrywebedit-20&linkCode=as2&camp=1789&creative=390957&creativeASIN=B002ON6MIA) are also considered “alternative” but come on…1977 was named for the release of Star Wars. They might be the best rock band you’ve never heard of. Unless you have, in which case they’re still really good.

[The Avalanches](http://www.last.fm/music/The+Avalanches) — [Since I Left You](http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B001O01JXM?ie=UTF8&tag=pberrywebedit-20&linkCode=as2&camp=1789&creative=390957&creativeASIN=B001O01JXM). I have a thing for beepy music, what can I say. So does David. Hence this selection. I had to laugh at how they are described on Last.fm though, “[plunderphonics](http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Plunderphonics)” sounds hilarious.

[Bill Hicks](http://www.last.fm/music/Bill+Hicks) — Arizona Bay, Dangerous, Rant In E-Minor, and Relentless. If you know me, you know I love Bill Hicks and clearly I think everyone else should as well.

[Bis](http://www.last.fm/music/Bis) — Return To Central (apparently this is now out of print, please see your local used music store for purchase)

> Aggressively primitative and defiantly childish, the Bis claimed to be at the forefront of “the Teen-C Revolution,” which apparently translated as young adults wishing they were still in elementary school.

[Stephen Thomas Erlewine, All Music Guide](http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B000QKGMDS?ie=UTF8&tag=pberrywebedit-20&linkCode=as2&camp=1789&creative=390957&creativeASIN=B000QKGMDS)

I think that’s all that really needs to be said.

[Bomb The Bass](http://www.last.fm/music/Bomb+the+Bass) — Clear (also not available for mp3 purchase). I probably only needed to include _Bug Powder Dust_ as the rest is pretty mellow, but know this was a road trip that would take David through some of the emptiest areas of the country I felt that including the entire album would still be worth it.

[Boy Kill Boy](http://www.last.fm/music/Boy+Kill+Boy) — [Civilian](http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B000W04QYO?ie=UTF8&tag=pberrywebedit-20&linkCode=as2&camp=1789&creative=390957&creativeASIN=B000W04QYO). Last.fm says “British indie-rock”. I say brit-pop. It’s my blog, so I win. It was included mainly because I figured David hadn’t heard them before. They never really “made it” in America.

[Bran Van 3000](http://www.last.fm/music/Bran+Van+3000) — [Glee](http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B000TS622I?ie=UTF8&tag=pberrywebedit-20&linkCode=as2&camp=1789&creative=390957&creativeASIN=B000TS622I). I find this hard to classify, which is exactly why I thought David would like it.

[Curve](http://www.last.fm/music/Curve) — [Dopplegänger](http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00000DR75?ie=UTF8&tag=pberrywebedit-20&linkCode=as2&camp=1789&creative=390957&creativeASIN=B00000DR75) (also unavailable for digital purchase). Way, way, way before Garbage there was Curve. Guitars, heavy pseudo-industrial beats, and a dead sexy vocalist (Toni Halliday, who you might have heard on The Killers Christmas single [A Great Big Sled](http://www.last.fm/music/The+Killers/_/A+Great+Big+Sled+%28Feat.+Toni+Halliday%29)).

[The Damage Manual](http://www.last.fm/music/The+Damage+Manual) — [1](http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B000XQRCH0?ie=UTF8&tag=pberrywebedit-20&linkCode=as2&camp=1789&creative=390957&creativeASIN=B000XQRCH0). I consider _Blame and Demand_ to be one of the best driving songs **ever**. Even if you don’t like “industrial” music, give this a shot.

[Death In Vegas](http://www.last.fm/music/Death+in+Vegas) — [Dead Elvis](http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B002BN6LPC?ie=UTF8&tag=pberrywebedit-20&linkCode=as2&camp=1789&creative=390957&creativeASIN=B002BN6LPC) is classic late-90′s “big beat”. You’ve probably heard their hit single _Dirt_.

[DJ Shadow](http://www.last.fm/music/DJ+Shadow) — [In Tune And On Time](http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B000294RHG?ie=UTF8&tag=pberrywebedit-20&linkCode=as2&camp=1789&creative=390957&creativeASIN=B000294RHG). It’s not that I didn’t think David didn’t have any DJ Shadow, but maybe he didn’t have this live concert. It’s amazing stuff.

[Drum Club](http://www.last.fm/music/Drum+Club) Drums Are Dangerous (out of print). More 90′s beepy music from Europe. Ah, the good old days…

_Stay tuned for parts [2](http://blog.patandkat.com/2010/02/still-driving-part-2/) and [3](http://blog.patandkat.com/2010/02/still-driving-part-3/) as we travel down the alphabet._

Recently Overplayed

I have a longer 2009 wrap-up piece in the works, but I want to get a few recent albums in front of you that I can’t get off my currently played list.

* [Matt & Kim](http://www.last.fm/music/Matt%2B%2526%2BKim) — Grand ([iTunes](http://itunes.apple.com/us/album/grand/id301980979)|[Amazon](http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B001P9HNHI?ie=UTF8&tag=pberrywebedit-20&linkCode=as2&camp=1789&creative=390957&creativeASIN=B001P9HNHI))
* [Yeasayer](http://www.last.fm/music/Yeasayer) — Oddblood ([iTunes](http://itunes.apple.com/us/album/odd-blood/id352436240)|[Amazon](http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00367TZ46?ie=UTF8&tag=pberrywebedit-20&linkCode=as2&camp=1789&creative=390957&creativeASIN=B00367TZ46))
* [Vampire Weekend](http://www.last.fm/music/Vampire+Weekend) — Contra ([iTunes](http://itunes.apple.com/us/album/contra-bonus-track-version/id340465551)|[Amazon](http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B002YP45EQ?ie=UTF8&tag=pberrywebedit-20&linkCode=as2&camp=1789&creative=390957&creativeASIN=B002YP45EQ))
* [Low vs Diamond](http://www.last.fm/music/Low+vs.+Diamond) — Low vs Diamond ([iTunes](http://itunes.apple.com/us/album/low-vs-diamond/id276771199)|[Amazon](http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B0018Q4C4A?ie=UTF8&tag=pberrywebedit-20&linkCode=as2&camp=1789&creative=390957&creativeASIN=B0018Q4C4A))