Five Songs, 11/22/2021
Five Songs

Five Songs, 11/22/2021

Run The Jewels, "Blockbuster Night, Pt. 1"

El-P and Killer Mike first got together on the latter's R.A.P. Music, which is an amazing album. When they announced a full collab, the first Run the Jewels record, I was pumped. And it was excellent, some of El-P's best production ever (to that point), and it was just a great time all around. And they stuck with it, and somehow Run the Jewels 2 found another level. It's pissed off, righteously so, and funnels all that rage into focused, punishing tracks. One of the best hip hop records ever.

Liturgy, "High Gold"

I've recommended Liturgy's Aesthetica to multiple people in the past, and I usually describe it as sounding like a malfuncitoning machine. And I stand by that description. In a lot of ways, this is the ideal introduction to black metal. There's the furious tremelo picking, the howling vocals, the raging blast beats, all the traditional markers. But they layer on some hypnotic rhythms that give your brain something to hang on to, and it adds just enough accessibility to kind of get to grips with it.

Japandroids, "The House That Heaven Built"

Irresistable. Japandroids managed the trick of taking huge rock moves (giant chords, "oh oh oh"s, all that good shit) without sounding hacky about it. It's just big fun rock, and I love it so much.

Einstürzende Neubauten, "Morning Dew"

Halber Mensch was kind of the album where Neubauten went from a fascinating experimental band to one that was writing things that sounded like songs. That trend continued with their 1987 album, Fuenf Auf Der Nach Oben Offenen Richterskala ("Five on the Open Ended Richter Scale"). I think nowhere is that more clear than on this track, which is a cover of a folk song that is most famous for being recorded by the Grateful Dead. Early Neubauten wouldn't have gone anywhere near this, but by the time they got here, they were confident enough to take this tune and make it their own.

Drive-By Truckers, "The Southern Thing"

OK, y'all, this might be the best Five Songs ever. Enjoy!

Joshua Buergel
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