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True Confessions

I decided that 24 straight hours of listening to the new Decemberists album was bad for my health, so I'd better put on something unpretentious. Very unpretentious. Flipping through the old iTunes library what did I find but . . . Green Day's classic 1994 breakthrough album Dookie, not listened since . . . well . . . a long time. And it's great! Or at least I think so, which I think may make me a bad person. It's possible that anything you heard containing the lyrics, "I finally figured out myself for the first time / I found out what it takes to me a man / Mom and Dad will never understand / What's happening to me" when you're fourteen years old buries in some weird part of your brain stem and makes you love the album forever and ever against your better judgment. That's some good angst. I even have some Kerplunk songs on this thing . . . so much shame.

UPDATE: seems like an appropriate moment for one of those random shuffle dealies:

  1. "Rock Show," Peaches.
  2. "When You Heard You," French Kicks.
  3. "Vonal Declosion," Stereolab.
  4. "Father of Mine," Everclear.
  5. "Jenny," Sleater-Kinney.
  6. "Dead Disco," Metric.
  7. "C'mon, C'mon," The Von Bondies.
  8. "New Town," The Slits.
  9. "Hairspray Queen," Nirvana.
  10. "New York City," They Might Be Giants.
Gender parity is even breaking out among the singers on my playlist!

March 27, 2005 | Permalink


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Dude, if Greenday is the least pretentious music you own, then your're one pretentious mother f***er. I thought you were gonna bust out the "Boyz to Men" or Aerosmith.

One of the benefits/evils of having over 20 gigs of space and acess to free music is that you end up with some truly embarassing stuff in your library.

Posted by: WillieStyle | Mar 27, 2005 4:54:44 PM

I don't think there are any less pretentious whole albums, but definitely some cheesey eighties music is in effect. I'll defend "Walk Like An Egyptian" as a legitimately good song any day, though....

Posted by: Matthew Yglesias | Mar 27, 2005 5:08:15 PM

Somnething from 1994 is a "classic?" And I've never even heard Green Day. I'm old. Thanks a lot.

Posted by: C.J.Colucci | Mar 27, 2005 5:10:21 PM

24 hours? That's all? My roommate and I have been listening to it all-but-nonstop for about a month and a half. And it only officially came out a week ago.

Posted by: ryan | Mar 27, 2005 5:25:53 PM

Love -> Building On Fire Talking Heads
Court And Spark Joni Mitchell
How Much I've Lied Gram Parsons
The Name of This Thing Is Not Love Elvis Costello & The Imposters
Crazy Willie Nelson
Mr. Moonlight The Beatles
The Boogie That Be Black Eyed Peas
True Colors (The Storm) Squeeze
Don't Get Me Wrong The Pretenders
Everybody's Got Something To Hide Except Me And My Monke The Beatles

Posted by: dmh | Mar 27, 2005 5:29:33 PM

Why not? Even I think I'm funny:

HP Lovecraft - Ellectrallentando
Kaleidoscope - Seven-Ate Sweet
Judy Collins - That's No Way to Say Goodbye
Love Sculpture - Why How Now
Gregson & Collister - Talent Will Out
Sonny Boy Williamson - The River Rhine
Ammons & Stitt - John Brown's Body
Led Zeppelin - Dazed & Confused
The Doors - Unhappy Girl
Shawn Phillips - Steel Eyes

Posted by: bob mcmanus | Mar 27, 2005 5:32:13 PM

The same thing happened to me last week. I had an itch to hear 'Longview' but couldn't remember which track it was. I ended up listening to the whole album and liking it (almost) all the way through. It was a shocking experience, and I've had trouble talking about it before now.

Posted by: zwichenzug | Mar 27, 2005 5:32:36 PM

Oh hey, I'm listening to my iPod on shuffle right now!

Steven's Last Night in Town - Ben Folds Five
You Outta Know - (an a cappella version, none the less) U. Penn Off the Beat
Thought I Knew You - Matthew Sweet
Man in the Mirror - (another a cappella, sigh) Tufts Amalgamates
Good Old Days - Owsley
This Book Is a Movie - Spoon
Winter - Tori Amos
Chickfactor - Belle & Sebastian
Ray Charles - Old 97s
Upside Down - A*Teens (*so ashamed*)

*sigh* You can see the list trying hard to be true to my indie and power pop ideals, but my essential fagginess will not be silenced.

Posted by: ryan | Mar 27, 2005 5:52:23 PM

"And I've never even heard Green Day. I'm old."

Ah, come on! You're only old if you want to be. I have "Dookie," and I was born in '54 . . .

"Some say,'Quit or I'll go blind.'
But it's just a myth"--Greenday, 1994

"Despite terrifying warnings given to young people historically, it does not cause blindness, weakness, mental retardation or any other physical problem. If it did, the entire male population and about half of females would be blind, weak, simpleminded and sick."--Dr. james Dobson, 2005

Posted by: rea | Mar 27, 2005 6:04:16 PM

Has anybody heard M.I.A.?

Posted by: Dan | Mar 27, 2005 6:16:52 PM

"Flipping through the old iTunes library what did I find but . . . Green Day's classic 1994 breakthrough album Dookie, not listened since . . . well . . . a long time. And it's great! Or at least I think so, which I think may make me a bad person."

Indeed, it does make you a bad person, not so much for liking Green Day - we all have guilty pleasures - but for admitting it. Things like that should be left unspoken due to a deep and appropriate sense of shame.

And don't think it gets balanced out by listing some cool bands on your random shuffle.

Posted by: Petey | Mar 27, 2005 6:38:10 PM

The Decemberists are quite pretentious, but with a new Stephan Malkmaus, a new Silver Jews, and a new Mountain Goats on the way, the pretentiousness has only begun. If you haven't heard the newer Spoon album "Gimme Fiction," do so. Its my album of the year so far.

Posted by: jacob Kirkland | Mar 27, 2005 6:47:44 PM

Every Saturday emerson college plays three hours of a capella, including versions of "Be My Baby Tonight" and "Crawling in the Dark". It's sort of like heaven.

Posted by: Rachel | Mar 27, 2005 6:49:43 PM

Billie Joe once nearly ran me over in SF (or rather his ex-girlfriend and I, who I happened to be walking with) in his monster SUV, but I like them anyhow. Dookie was a good record.

Posted by: Robin the Hoodlum | Mar 27, 2005 6:55:12 PM


Living in Paradise- Elvis Costello
Crab- Weezer
Rattled by the Rush- Pavement
We Dug a Hole- OKGO
Black Eye- Uncle Tupelo
Blind- Face to Face
Brand New Colony- The Postal Service
Lioness- Songs:Ohia
Let's Pretend We're Bunny Rabbits- The Magnetic Fields
Commerce, TX- Ben Kweller

I think I'd like some a capella Nirvana. That'd be fun.

Posted by: TJ | Mar 27, 2005 6:57:06 PM

Secret - Maroon 5
Smaointe - Enya
Your Body Is A Wonderland - John Mayer
Stoned - Dido
Rock Me To Sleep - Jill Sobule
Zombie - The Cranberries
Surf Colorado - Bowling For Soup
Drive - Ziggy Marley
Auf Achse - Franz Ferdinand
Desert Moon - Dennis DeYoung (Styx)

Posted by: poputonian | Mar 27, 2005 7:04:40 PM

Guantanamera - Celia Cruse
I Touch Myself - Divinyls
Could you be Loved? - Bob Marley & The Wailers
Angel - Hendrix (some kind of live version)
What is Love? - Haddaway
You can't do That - The Beatles
1979 - The Smashing Pumpkins
Love TKO - Teddy Pendergrass
My Old School - Steely Dan
Blue Sky - Allman Brothers

Posted by: yesh | Mar 27, 2005 7:48:27 PM

The Decemberists just got all their gear stolen. You can drop them a few bucks if you feel like it.

Posted by: Adam | Mar 27, 2005 8:24:29 PM

Elvis Costello-Watch your step
Neil Young-Powderfinger
Los Lobos-Will the wolf survive?
The Go-Betweens-Someone Else's Wife
Bob Dylan-Watching the river flow
The Clash-Spanish Bombs
Johnny Thunders-(She's So)Untouchable
Henry Cow-Bittern storm over Ulm
Pink Floyd-Run like hell
Lee Konitz-Blues Suite

Posted by: F | Mar 27, 2005 8:39:15 PM

"Father of Mine" - if you don't already have Everclear's "Sparkle and Fade" album, do not pass go and get it. It blows away everything they've done since, the comparison is not even close.

Posted by: Adam M | Mar 28, 2005 1:13:12 AM

16 military wives...if you get a chance to download the video for that song, it is brilliant.

i am having a hard time figuring out what makes playful pop music about being stuck in a whale or being an injured football player pretentious.

Posted by: reggie | Mar 28, 2005 6:21:41 AM

I think his use of "Chimbley Sweep" in a song title pretty much renders pretentious everything he has done or will ever do.

Posted by: ryan | Mar 28, 2005 11:38:19 AM

Sigh - okay, the COMPLETELY SCHLOCK random list - coming at you, right here, from my 20g ipod.

Make fun as desired. I can take it.

AC-DC - For Those About To Rock
Police - Every Little Thing She Do is Magic
Spirit of the West - Home For a Rest
Red Hot Chili Peppers - Apache Rose Peacock
Anita Baker - Lonely
The Icarus line - On The Lash
Dead Can Dance - The Song of the Sybil
Beastie Boys - The Maestro
Snoop Doggy Dogg - All My Niggas & Bit@@es
Johnny Cash - Boy Named Sue

So THERE, all you Kool Kids - make fun of the plebian tastes of a Texas boy!

Posted by: JC | Mar 28, 2005 12:06:29 PM

Great thread. Good to see a varied taste of music. If I had an ipod, my random list would include, modern, classic, and hard rock, jam bands, techno, trance, classical, hiphop, jazz, funk, blues and jamjazz. The only thing I don't listen to is pop country. Bleh.

Posted by: Adrock | Mar 28, 2005 12:11:45 PM

No need to feel embarrassed about Kerplunk--that is a damn good album. Dookie isn't bad either, but unfortunately loses some points for having inspired a generally awful genre of music--all the Blink-182-esque mall punk. (I call this the "Black Sabbath" rule.)

Posted by: ranj | Mar 28, 2005 1:35:54 PM

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