Five Songs, 6/7/2017
Five Songs

Five Songs, 6/7/2017

Time to check in on analytics. It says here I'm consistently above 10 people a day. Not bad! If you're one of those 10 people, feel free to let me know down below. Or not, it's cool, I love talking about music to myself. Speaking of music...

Built to Spill, "The Weather"

The closer for Ancient Melodies of the Future, this almost sounds more like a Belle and Sebastian song at times instead of a Built to Spill song. Compared to monumental closers like "Broken Chairs" or "Untrustable Pt. 2", this song comes off as limp. In fact, the lack of epics like those two songs are one of the reasons Ancient Melodies is not as great as the preceding albums.

Soundgarden, "Big Dumb Sex"

When we had Mudhoney, I characterized grunge as a merging of garage rock, punk, and metal. I stand by that statement, but will note that bands that were considered part of grunge adjusted that mix. Soundgarden, of course, was far towards the metal end of things. This song comes from Louder than Love, their major label debut and the worst album of theirs I own (I skipped Down on the Upside). The album is kind of a mess, and sort of sounds like a band feeling their way towards what their sound would be. This song, an over-the-top parody of metal machismo, is pretty ridiculous fun, though.

The B.U.M.S., "At The Well"

I have basically a boundless appetite for singalong pop punk, and The B.U.M.S. made a great album called In Wanna Smash Sensation in that vein in the early 90s, with just wall-to-wall high-energy pop songs. I want to say they were from Vancouver, Canada, but details on the band are sketchy on the Internet, so here we are. Frankly, I'm surprised the song was even on YouTube.

(NB: I have the band recorded as "The B.U.M.S.", a construction I don't think I would have made up, but Allmusic and this YouTube video have the band as just "Bum", so, you know.)

The Blue Meanies, "Creepy"

The Blue Meanies return, again, with a more interesting song than the last couple of times we heard from them. I've officially run out of things to say about this band, though, so next time they come up, I'm going full-on stream of consciousness.

Aphex Twin, "Cliffs"

Aphex Twin is probably one of the strangest acts to ever get really popular, with Richard James seeming to try everything to throw people off but nevertheless still having quite a bit of commercial as well as critical success. He's one of the standard bearers for not only ambient electronic music, but other styles such as jungle. It's not an exaggeration to say that each of the albums he's recorded as Aphex Twin (not to mention his other aliases) have all been genuinely surprising. This track comes from Selected Ambient Works Volume II which isn't as good as the first volume, which is widely considered one of the classics of electronic music.

Joshua Buergel
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