Scotch Sampler

scotchandcigar

All I wanted was some steak
Feb 13, 2009
23,717
18,883
168
Vacationland
Well boys and girls, we've reached another end of the year in indie music, which means that Sirius XMU is running its Top 41 of 2022. So I thought I'd post the list here with my thoughts, and highlight the songs I particularly liked. Nothing really stood-out or blew me away; the overarching theme seems to be pleasant, danceable songs that make good background music. As to why it's 41 songs, I think they took the concept of top-40, and added one just to say fuck-you. So here we go - Part 1

41. Spoon – My Babe
This is one of several hits from their latest album, but it's their first mushy love ballad. And unsurprisingly, it has crossed-over to the AC and top-40 stations. It'll likely become the only reason most of the population will have heard of Spoon.

40. Broken Bells – Saturdays
Another brilliant song from the super-duo of The Shins' James Mercer and super-producer/artist Danger Mouse, channeling George Harrison



39. The Beths – Expert in a Dying Field
The latest release from this fun group who've made this list before. Check-out the video, which features a wealth of obsolete technology



38. Interpol - NYC (remaster)
Not sure why this has charted again, other than being on a compilation CD.

37. Automatic – New Beginning
This is a fun and funky, very retro girl trio, as the mag-tape reader in the video proclaims
1671461709134.png




36. Foals – 2am
Over the years, Foals has cranked out one funky dance tune after another. This isn't my favorite one, but it's nonetheless infectious



The next 3 are all "meh" songs from artists I find pleasant, but not too notable
35. Yot Club – u don’t kno me
34. Bartees Strange – Wretched
33. Father John Misty – Goodbye Mr. Blue

32. Momma – Speeding 72 (live)
One of my favorites of the year; and yes, it's retro and derivative, but they're a really tight group with performance chops, here with a live version
 
  • Like
Reactions: HecticArt and Aaron

scotchandcigar

All I wanted was some steak
Feb 13, 2009
23,717
18,883
168
Vacationland
Part 2

Starting with more "meh" songs from artists I find pleasant, but not too notable (referring to these songs in particular)
31. Pinegrove – Alaska
30. Kurt Vile – Like Exploding Stones
29. Billy Nomates – Blue Bones
28. Beirut – Fisher Island Sound

27. Horsegirl – Anti-glory
Another favorite of mine, this is their latest



26. Wet Leg – Too Late Now (live on James Corden)
Definitely the biggest indie phenomenon of the past year, they also put on a fun live show



25. Alex G – Runner
Meh

24. Lucius – Next to Normal
A great singing duo, I posted a live performance of this song early this year. If the world was normal, they'd be on the top of the Billboard charts



23. Phoebe Bridgers – Sidelines
I believe I posted this one before as well, but it's a powerful tune from one of the indie word's top artists



More decent tunes from good artists, but not so notable
22. Arlo Parks – Softly
21. Plains – Problem with It
20. Goth Babe/ Blood Cultures – Driving South

19. Sharon Van Etten – Mistakes
And another one I may have posted some time back. She's indie royalty now. Fun song and video
 
  • Like
Reactions: HecticArt

scotchandcigar

All I wanted was some steak
Feb 13, 2009
23,717
18,883
168
Vacationland
Part 3

The first of 2 entries for the Yeah Yeah Yeahs, who were supposed to be the musical act on SNL this past weekend, but canceled due to illness. Anyway, this song is popular with many, but I find it somewhat derivative of previous stuff from them

18. Yeah Yeah Yeahs – Burning



More "meh" songs. FYI, The Smile features half of Radiohead (Thom Yorke, Johnny Greenwood and a drummer). I like many of these artists, but the songs aren't strong.
17. Phoenix/ Ezra Koenig – Tonight
16. The Smile – The Smoke
15. Steve Lacy – Bad Habit
14. Sylvan Esso – Sunburn
13. Tame Impala – No Choice
12. Dehd – Bad Love
11. Soccer Mommy - Shotgun

10. Angel Olsen – All the Good Times
Perhaps the queen of indie? Anyway, this one starts slow, and has a country feel, but it's one of the best of the "we're done" songs



More good but not good enough songs. Fontaines D. C. is actually a pretty rocking band (with a weird name)
9. National/ Bon Iver – Weird Goodbyes
8. Fontaines D. C. – Jackie Down the Line
7. Animal Collective – Prester John
6. Mitski – The Only Heartbreaker
5. Alvvays - Pharmacist

4. Spoon – Wild (live on Colbert)
I previously posted the studio version, but they're great live



And if we skip over these...
3. Beach House – Once Twice Melody
2. Big Thief – Simulation Swarm

...we get to Sirius XMU's #1. Not an amazing song, but pretty cool, and a nice collaboration
1. Yeah Yeah Yeahs/ Perfume Genius – Spitting Off the Edge of the World
 
  • Like
Reactions: HecticArt

sadchild

Dude
Mar 28, 2016
11,059
12,843
168
53
NH
www.asimplecomplex.com
34. Bartees Strange – Wretched
I dig their song "Weights"
32. Momma – Speeding 72
I like this one, but not enough to make my "best 100 songs of 2022" list
25. Alex G – Runner
Meh
Agreed
4. Spoon – Wild
I dig this one
1. Yeah Yeah Yeahs/ Perfume Genius – Spitting Off the Edge of the World
This made .... a .... list of mine...
 
  • Like
Reactions: scotchandcigar

scotchandcigar

All I wanted was some steak
Feb 13, 2009
23,717
18,883
168
Vacationland
Last night, I had an odd moment - like a Six Degrees of Kevin Bacon "Everything's connected" moment. Right after I found out that Jeff Beck died, I was watching our local Maine newsmagazine show called "207". They have this recurring segment where a couple of people from Bull Moose Records come on, and talk about new music and video releases. It's pre-taped, and then it airs at 7 pm. They were talking about a new reissue from The Yardbirds, which I thought was very coincidental.

But then they talked about how influential that group was, by explaining how the members splintered-off into other bands. Of course they mentioned Led Zeppelin, but they also said that two members went in a different direction, by moving into the classical-based prog-rock genre. The group they formed was Renaissance, and it so happens that I had an obsession with them in the mid-70s. I must've included them in my chronology of favorites, right? Nope. I think the first time around, I left them out, because they're a little off the beaten path for rock music. But then I did a 2nd round, to grab all the favorites I left out the first time, and I guess I just skipped over them, probably because I was overwhelmed with so many mid-70s artists.

Ironically, when I looked into the biography of Renaissance, the two original members who had come from The Yardbirds left the band before they became successful. So it was just an odd series of events, that got me to remember to post them here. I'm willing to bet most of you (very possibly all of you) won't care about Renaissance, but were an essential element of the progressive popular rock movement, one that included Yes, Jethro Tull, Emerson Lake and Palmer, and even Kansas. Of all those bands, they were the most purely classical (like Mozart, not classic like Steppenwolf). But from '74 through '78, they put out 4 consecutive Billboard Top 100 albums (2 were top 50).

Just as artists like Steely Dan merged jazz with pop and rock, Renaissance merged classical with pop and rock. But their biggest gift to the world of music was the incredibly beautiful 5-octave voice of Annie Haslam. She is one of the all-time best; especially live.

Many of their songs are 10 to 20 minute affairs. But this early hit of theirs clocks in at merely 3:20.

Renaissance – Carpet of the Sun (Live)



I was obsessed with their 1974 album Turn of the Cards, from where these next two come. Each song is like a 4 movement classical symphony, so if you can, just hit play, and let 'em run

Renaissance – Running Hard (Live at Carnegie Hall)



This one showcases Haslam's amazing range

Renaissance – Things I Don’t Understand
 
  • Like
Reactions: HecticArt and Aaron

sadchild

Dude
Mar 28, 2016
11,059
12,843
168
53
NH
www.asimplecomplex.com
Someone I work with posted this on FB. Made me think of you.

Over the decades there's been some awesome debut records including but certainly not limited to Van Halen, Boston and The Cars. But 54 years ago today was the debut of Chicago Transit Authority, probably my favorite of them all. Sadly within a decade Chicago became a sappy pop band, mostly because of the untimely death of Terry Kath.
 

scotchandcigar

All I wanted was some steak
Feb 13, 2009
23,717
18,883
168
Vacationland
Someone I work with posted this on FB. Made me think of you.

Over the decades there's been some awesome debut records including but certainly not limited to Van Halen, Boston and The Cars. But 54 years ago today was the debut of Chicago Transit Authority, probably my favorite of them all. Sadly within a decade Chicago became a sappy pop band, mostly because of the untimely death of Terry Kath.
There's a lot of truth to this. Chicago's first 4 albums were double albums, all released between 1969 and 1971. Their first 12 albums all went platinum or multi-platinum (up until Terry Kath's death). And then 16 and 17 went multi-platinum.

Here's something unique from their first album, based on the 1968 Democratic National Convention police riot.

Prologue/Someday August 29, 1968
 
  • Like
Reactions: HecticArt

sadchild

Dude
Mar 28, 2016
11,059
12,843
168
53
NH
www.asimplecomplex.com
Today I learned........

So that chant at the beginning. I've heard that before - but from a source later than that Chicago song. I'm a fan of Bill Fox and back in 2011 a filmmaker got permission to use one of his unreleased songs on a montage of photos taken at Occupy Wall Street. The clip begins with a crowd chanting "The whole world is watching!" And now I know where they got that chant from!


 
  • Like
Reactions: scotchandcigar

scotchandcigar

All I wanted was some steak
Feb 13, 2009
23,717
18,883
168
Vacationland
Once again, it's time for that feature that nobody is asking for - a Scotch Sampler music update! Here are some of the recent indie music tracks that I've taken a liking to, starting with the latest single from one of my favorite current bands, Momma. They had a great album in 2022, with a bunch of good songs, starting with Speeding 72 (featured above). They have a sound not unlike Veruca Salt. Here's their new one

Momma – Bang Bang



Every so often, something a bit unconventional shows up on the indie scene. I don't know why, but I kind of like this one, from an English/French band named Mandy, Indiana. It's noise rock sung in French, but it has a bit of a NIN vibe.

Mandy, Indiana – Pinking Shears



The Yeah Yeah Yeahs have become the "corporate rock" of the indie scene. They have a bunch of singles out now; some are a bit pedestrian and uninspired. I think this is one of the better ones, because it's got a great groove

Yeah Yeah Yeahs – Fleez



Men I Trust is the oddly named band that's up to it's 2nd album getting airplay. This new tune has such a Steely Dan vibe, I always imagine that somewhere, Donald Fagen is grooving to this one

Men I Trust – Billie Toppy
 

scotchandcigar

All I wanted was some steak
Feb 13, 2009
23,717
18,883
168
Vacationland
This next song is a collaboration between two artists I previously knew little to nothing about. I know the name Soccer Mommy; their songs have been getting airplay for a few years now. The lead singer has a nice voice, a little like Sinead O'Connor. I had never heard of Bully before this single came out.

Turns out, Bully is one person - Alicia Bognanno; and Soccer Mommy is one person - Sofia Regina Allison. They are both from Nashville. And I just love the sound of this tune

Bully (feat. Soccer Mommy) – Lose You



I discovered that Bully got noticed for this cool cover of a Nirvana tune

Bully – About a Girl (Nirvana cover)



And finally, here's another super-cool tune from LCD Soundsystem. It's a rave-length piece

LCD Soundsystem – new body rhumba



The track was used for the final scene of White Noise on Netflix. If you want to see that video, here it is

LCD Soundsystem – new body rhumba (final scene from White Noise)
 
  • Like
Reactions: HecticArt and Aaron

HecticArt

Administrator
Oct 19, 2008
50,172
17,639
168
Toledo, Ohio
Shoot. Too many to listen to with the Mrs. in the room.
Need to check them out later when I can pay attention to them.

I know Mommy from XMU. It's good.
I like Pinking Shears too. Haven't heard it before.
 

HecticArt

Administrator
Oct 19, 2008
50,172
17,639
168
Toledo, Ohio
Momma – Bang Bang
I like it. It’s got a good 90s Indy Devine Hammer kind of a vibe.
Mandy, Indiana – Pinking Shears
My favorite of the first batch.

Yeah Yeah Yeahs – Fleez
Good, trustworthy, reliable offering from Yeahs. Rub some more funk on it and it could be a Yacht song. (I miss those guys.)
Men I Trust – Billie Toppy
I like the groove, but it doesn‘t remind me of Steely.

Bully – About a Girl (Nirvana cover)
Equal parts silky and gritty. It’s enjoyable.
LCD Soundsystem – new body rhumba
I always dig these guys. The radio version can’t be this 7 minute epic.
LCD Soundsystem – new body rhumba (final scene from White Noise)
That was one of the best movie credit scenes ever. I had to rewind it to watch it a second time.
 

scotchandcigar

All I wanted was some steak
Feb 13, 2009
23,717
18,883
168
Vacationland
I always dig these guys. The radio version can’t be this 7 minute epic.

That was one of the best movie credit scenes ever. I had to rewind it to watch it a second time.
There is no shorter version of the song out there. SXM doesn't care how long it is.

This is a video about the making of that scene
 
  • Love
Reactions: HecticArt

sadchild

Dude
Mar 28, 2016
11,059
12,843
168
53
NH
www.asimplecomplex.com
As for myself, I've spent much of my life defending early Chicago against soft-n-sensitive pussy-whipped love-song Chicago. So I know I'm able to like Styx if I want.

I'm listening to Howard Stern 7/23/2002 and there's a nine minute conversation about old Chicago vs new Chicago (they also talk about Styx and Journey in the same way).

Here it is, clipped, if you want to listen to it

 
  • Like
Reactions: HecticArt