Lucid Culture

JAZZ, CLASSICAL MUSIC AND THE ARTS IN NEW YORK CITY

Song of the Day 9/21/09

Every day at least for the next week or so, our top 666 songs of alltime countdown gets one step closer to #1. Monday’s song is #310:

Elliott Smith – Bled White

The best song ever written about scoring heroin, maybe, over gorgeously watery, crescendoing George Harrisonesque guitar played through a Leslie organ speaker. From the XO cd, 1999, mp3s abound

September 21, 2009 Posted by | lists, Lists - Best of 2008 etc., Music, music, concert | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Song of the Day 9/18/09

Every day, our top 666 songs of alltime countdown gets one step closer to #1. Friday’s song is #313:

Michael Caine – It’s Over

The Roy Orbison original may be a classic, but it’s the version by Michael Caine in the 1998 film Little Voice that’s the best. Caine’s character is a villain, a drunken clubowner singing this song onstage with his house band in a moment of particular unease, and his acting is amazing. Caine is actually a decent singer impersonating someone who can’t hit a note to save his life, imbuing a pretty despicable character with some actual humanity. Here’s a torrent of the whole movie.

September 18, 2009 Posted by | lists, Lists - Best of 2008 etc., Music, music, concert | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Song of the Day 9/17/09

Every day, our top 666 songs of alltime countdown gets one step closer to #1. Thursday’s song is #314:

Elvis Costello – Worthless Thing

This came out in 1985 on the vastly underrated Goodbye Cruel World album, the same year the Dead Kennedys did their anti-corporate music rant MTV Get off the Air. Both reach the same conclusion, Costello a little more elegantly. The Rhino reissue from the 90s has a whole bunch of interesting outakes (including a transcendent solo version of Richard Thompson’s Withered and Died); otherwise, there are mp3s at all the usual places.

September 17, 2009 Posted by | lists, Lists - Best of 2008 etc., Music, music, concert | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Song of the Day 9/16/09

Every day, our top 666 songs of alltime countdown gets one step closer to #1. Wednesday’s song is #315:

The Church – Transient

Written and sung by Peter Koppes, one of the great Australian rockers’ two lead guitarists, this hauntingly evocative, propulsive number dates from the 1990 Gold Afternoon Fix album, which seemed mediocre when it first came out but has aged extremely well. Hard to find as a single track, and don’t feel guilty about downloading the whole album: it was released on a major label so the band gets no royalties.

September 16, 2009 Posted by | lists, Lists - Best of 2008 etc., Music, music, concert | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 3 Comments

Song of the Day 9/15/09

Every day, our top 666 songs of alltime countdown gets one step closer to #1. Tuesday’s song is #316:

Big Star – September Gurls

This one fell off this list and then fell back on because it’s so damn pretty and poignant. Don’t dismiss the song because it’s revered in the indie world, or because the band is overrated. This might be the greatest powerpop song ever written – and it wasn’t even a radio hit. Mp3s are everywhere: apparently it was on the soundtrack to a Fox tv show from the 90s.

September 15, 2009 Posted by | lists, Lists - Best of 2008 etc., Music, music, concert | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Song of the Day 9/14/09

Every day, our top 666 songs of alltime countdown gets one step closer to #1. Monday’s song is #317:

Katie Elevitch – Kindling For the Fire

If she keeps doing what she’s doing right now, someday the powerhouse New York rock siren will rank up there with Nina Simone and Patti Smith. The version on Elevitch’s live-in-the-studio 2008 cd is excellent as it is – and as its bassline menacingly rolls out, she and the band jam this out live into a witches’ sabbath. “Slaves stillborn gather round the hearse – kindling for the fire!”

September 14, 2009 Posted by | lists, Lists - Best of 2008 etc., Music, music, concert | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Song of the Day 9/13/09

Every day, our top 666 songs of alltime countdown gets one step closer to #1. Sunday’s song is #318:

The Rolling Stones – Memo from Turner

Originally credited to Jagger solo, this first appeared on the soundtrack to the cult film Performance with the Stones’ frontman playing a supporting role. Recorded during the sessions for Beggars Banquet, it’s one of their funniest songs: is he gay or isn’t he? Also incidentally one of Brian Jones’ most stinging moments in the band.The link above has the song playing over an amusing pastiche of clips from the movie. Mp3s are everywhere, but you’ll have to sift through a lot of dodgy outtakes. If you want something better sonically, it’s on a million European vinyl Stones anthologies.

September 13, 2009 Posted by | lists, Lists - Best of 2008 etc., Music, music, concert | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Song of the Day 9/12/09

Every day, our top 666 songs of alltime countdown gets one step closer to #1. Saturday’s song is #319:

Bob Dylan – Not Dark Yet

Hypnotic existentialist masterpiece from his big comeback album Time Out of Mind, 1997, curmudgeonly yet poignant:

I was born here and I’ll die here against my will

I know it looks like I’m moving, but I’m standing still

Every nerve in my body is so naked and numb

I can’t even remember what it was I came here to get away from

Don’t even hear the murmur of a prayer

It’s not dark yet, but it’s getting there

Mp3s abound but you’ll have to sift through some dodgy live stuff.

September 12, 2009 Posted by | lists, Lists - Best of 2008 etc., Music, music, concert | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Song of the Day 9/11/09

Every day, our top 666 songs of alltime countdown gets one step closer to #1. This being 9/11, today’s song looks at one lesson we should have learned from the atrocity. It’s #320 on the list:

Elgin Movement – Freedom Tower

This oldtimey trio – with Jerome O’Brien of the Dog Show on upright bass and Jake Engel on chromatic harp – was a short-lived side project of the great New York Americana songwriter and blues guitarist Lenny Molotov. This song was inspired by plans to replace the World Trade Center: as he tells it, the Freedom Tower is actually a giant prison. Unreleased, and bootlegs don’t seem to have surfaced, although Molotov has a long-awaited new album due out most likely in early 2010.

September 11, 2009 Posted by | lists, Lists - Best of 2008 etc., Music, music, concert | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Song of the Day 9/10/09

Every day, our top 666 songs of alltime countdown gets one step closer to #1. Thursday’s song is #321:

The Jam – Down in the Tube Station at Midnight

Evocative account of an encounter with a gang of neo-Nazis from All Mod Cons, 1978, back in the day when the London tube was a lot more dangerous. Bruce Foxton’s bass scurries along like a tube train…or a bunch of thugs who’ve just left their prey – a guy on the way home to his wife with his takeaway curry – lying in a pool of blood.

September 10, 2009 Posted by | lists, Lists - Best of 2008 etc., Music, music, concert | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment