Welcome to my new monthly series called “Five on Shuffle” where I attempt to reconnect with my iPod by using it regularly throughout the year and using it only and continuously on “shuffle.” Once a month I’m going to stop at a completely random interval, snap photos of five songs in a row, and then post and write about them here. The writing may be heavy or light, depending on whether or not I’ve anything remotely clever to say about any given song in the moment.
Also, also…Happy New Year!
1. Get Outta my Room – The Donnas
In the grand pantheon of music, The Donnas are often likened to The Ramones and the Runaways. And yeah, I supposed they’re a little bit like both, but they’ve definitely go their own aesthetic. A little bit punk, and little bit bratty, and little bit raucous. If I have but one issue with the band, it’s that I think they could rise above themselves to become more memorable than just another rock ‘n roll band from San Fransisco, but who am I to judge? Get Skintight is a teenage party album, full of tunes about seeking out and having a good time. “Get Outta My Room” defines that impudent attitude that they play up so well.
2. Witchcraft – Frank Sinatra
What the hell am I doing with a Sinatra album?! Believe me, I ask myself that every time I hear it. But then, once I do, I remember…boy, do I ever like his voice. Whenever I need a calming moment, Classic Sinatra (full title: Classic Sinatra: His Greatest Performances, 1953-1960), a best-of album, really hits all the right notes. And yes, I know. I know. Sinatra was Sinatra, and his songs weren’t much in the realm of PC, but oh well. If you don’t like it, then don’t listen. Meanwhile, with the classic tune “Witchcraft,” my memory always goes to Who Framed Roger Rabbit? because it can…and should.
3. And with His Stripes we are Healed – from Handel’s Messiah
What should I even type here? Should I expound upon my secret love of choral music because of all the years I spend singing in school chorales? Maybe I should mention that during all those years, I never once actually sung anything from Handel’s Messiah. It’s a big, booming, and beautiful work that requires stamina, if nothing else. I suppose I could be grumpy at myself for choosing an all-boys choir version of this particular piece. But as I understand it, women weren’t allowed to sing in choirs during Handel’s time, so the all-boys sound is more true to form. And I’m okay with that.
Hmm…maybe I’d have been better off not typing anything at all besides “Handel’s Messiah. It’s good, and I like it!”
4. Groove is in the Heart – Deee-Lite
I should not like this song as much as I…oh fuck it…”‘Groove is in the Heart’ is good, and I like it!” And I still want to be Lady Miss Keir when I grow up.
Also, I already wrote about this song in an iTunes diary. Click on over if you’d like more words about how good this song is and how much I like it.
5. Scalp – Atmosphere
Much to my discredit, I’ve not actually listened much to Atmosphere’s 2010 ep To All My Friends. (Fun fact: this was one of the last full albums I ever purchased through iTunes.) I mean, I have listened to it, surely, but it never reeled me in as much as their previous albums. Could be that because this album is a little less introspective than usual, it’s just not as easy to become as invested in the lyrics. Take “Scalp.” It’s a great, tragic song, but it feels a little too on-the-nose in terms of the fate of its protagonist. The band’s trademarked cleverness is missing, and that just makes it another melancholy hip-hop song with a melancholic ending. But honestly, that may just be my lack of knowledge talking. I likely owe the album a full listen again.