Alex – Mystery Disk 1 (2004)
I have 100’s of cd’s that I have burnt during the last 13 or so years. Most of them haven’t seen the light of day or been listened to in over a decade. There are some that have titles, but most have nothing written on them at all, leaving me completely in the dark about what is on them or when they are from. I’ve decided to travel back in time by listening to a few at random and judge how good or (most likely) bad my musical tastes were. I will be grading each song on a pass/fail system. A song will receive a passing grade if I still enjoy it and would still put it on some sort of playlist. A song receives a failing grade if it’s not something I would give the time of day now or am embarrassed about having ever liked in the first place.
I should note that I plan on using the smart phone app Soundhound to help me along on this journey because chances are; there is no way I will be able to name the majority of the songs.
Mystery Disk #1
1. Old 97’s, Question
So far so good. The Old 97’s are still a band I enjoy listening to and “Question” has only been slightly ruined for me over the years. Dr. Pepper, who always seems to try and ruin music through their commercials (see Dr. Dre), used “Question” for one of their commercials. That alone wouldn’t make me sick of it but it was one that was played over and over, sometimes more than once in a single commercial break. That’s what I get for watching a marathon of Ninja Warrior on SPIKE I guess. I’m still going to give myself a pass for this song though so I’m 1 for 1.
I still found myself singing right along with this one. It probably helps that I rediscovered Franz Ferdinand again earlier this year and went back to listen to all their old stuff. These Brits (Scots?) are going to get another pass from me.
I was never that big a fan of Modest Mouse back in the day. I really only enjoyed a handful of songs by them including “Float On”, “Third Planet” and some of their other more popular ones (yeah I was that guy, sue me). I definitely did grow to dislike this song because it was everywhere you looked and got very annoying. As I hear “Float On” now, I’m having the same reaction I did when I heard “Paper Planes” by M.I.A. the other day. Both are like a food you ate so much that you became sick of only to try again years later to realize it’s still pretty darn tasty. Plus I got into the Iron Horse covers of Modest Mouse in my bluegrass phase last year, so again, I’m going to give it a Pass.
Wow, I forgot Binary Star was a thing. I must admit, I still appreciate some aspects of this song but I have moved away from this type of hip-hop in the recent years and I don’t think I would put this on any play lists in the upcoming future. Sorry Binary Star, unlike your group I don’t plan on reuniting with you anytime soon.
5. TV On the Radio, Robots
Soundhound didn’t know this one but if I remember correctly its TV on the Radio. I can only remember that because of how surprised I was to learn this “song” was from them, a band I wouldn’t associate at all for this kind of track. It still has some funny lines like “robots fucking in the middle of telecast with Tom Browkaw announcing his love for puppies” but this gets another Fail from me.
This song is like “Question” earlier except I never grew annoyed by this one at all.
I’m starting to remember around when I made this CD. I remember “First Straw” was “the song” for a “relationship” I had in 9th or 10th grade (2002-03). Don’t ask me why we decided to have a 311 track as “our song” but we did and I will forever live with knowing that happened.
8. Aesop Rock, Night Light
I may have ventured away from hip-hop in recent years but I still have a soft spot for Aesop Rock.
9. Atmosphere, Shrapnel
I still enjoy Atmosphere in very light doses… That are very spread out from each other… That include only a handful of songs…. This not being one of them.
10. Run D.M.C., It’s Over
Haha another song I completely forgot existed. I think I enjoyed this track back in the day for the epic sounding choir/chanting/whatever is going on in the background and the quick little rhymes that are scattered throughout. It’s too bad the majority of this song consists of someone yelling at me about all Run D.M.C. has accomplished. Has anyone ever liked a song where a guy yells directly at the listener about accomplishments or when a new CD is coming out?
11. Latyrx, Say That
I always liked Latyrx, but I enjoy Lateef the Truth Speaker and Lyrics Born better when they are solo or working with other groups. That being said, I don’t really like this song at all now that I listen to it again. An odd beat with lots of bleeps and bloops with rhymes not good enough to overcome any of that.
(This is the half point mark for my list and although a strong start for the PASS songs, the FAIL’s had a good run there at the end to take the lead before half time. My computer is telling me there are 22 songs on this CD so I’m hoping it ends up leaning one way or another so I don’t have to create a tie breaker.)
12. Lustra, Scotty Doesn’t Know
Fuck. Fuck. Fuck. Since this song is on here, I know this is from at least 2004 because I remember first hearing this from the movie Eurotrip. I don’t know why I thought my music tastes would be better when I was in 10th or 11th grade but they obviously weren’t. Time will do that to you I guess. I still somewhat enjoy this song if only because it brings back so many high school memories + Matt Damond (so dreamy). I would probably never listen to it again though.
13. Franz Ferdinand, Auf Achse
Like I said earlier, I did get back into The Ferd earlier this year but this song didn’t hold up as well as some of the others.
14. Ben Kweller, Hospital Bed
I forgot Ben Kweller existed as a human being. I kind of wish I could travel back to that time again…
When I forgot he existed as a person that is, not when I listened to his music.
15. OPM, Better Daze
It’s going to get old real quick if I keep saying I forgot a certain band existed but I forgot OPM existed. If this were “Heaven is a Half Pipe” I would give it a PASS but sadly it’s not and I’m going to have to give it a
16. Ben Kweller, How It Should Be (Sha Sha)
“That’s how it should be. Sha Sha, Sha Do”
(PASS’s have to get every single song from here on to win it.)
17. Franz Ferdinand, Take Me Out
This is a good start for the PASS’s. “Take Me Out” is still enjoyable for me, even with Madden NFL 2005 and Guitar Hero trying their best to make me sick of it.
18. The Shins, Gone for Good
What I said earlier about “Float On” goes double for almost any song by The Shins. I loved The Shins for awhile after the Garden State soundtrack only to realize I was nowhere close to being the only one and started to dislike them when I heard them everywhere. I was both un-hip enough to not know about them before they were popular and un-hip because I joined a big group of people who started to dislike them because a big group of people started to like them (don’t worry the irony of doesn’t escape me). Anyway, I gave them another listen last year after enjoying the Broken Bells album and found I still did like some of The Shins older work. I’m on the fence about “Gone for Good” but since I want to make this closer I’m going to give it a pass.
19. Pete Yorn, Crystal Village
Damn, this is an embarrassingly awful song. I think this must have been a CD I made when I was bummed out or something from all my white boy high school problems. You know relationship stuff, having a face resembling the craters of the moon or whatever it is high schoolers get sad about. “Crystal Village”, like whatever high school relationship it probably followed is amateur and embarrassing for me.
20. Ben Kweller, Harriets Got a Song
(Even youtube knows this is terrible and refuses to have a good video for this song (oxymoron right there))
21. The Beatnuts, Watch Out Now
I probably would’ve enjoyed this song less if it had been located closer to the front of the CD. Instead it seems more like a delicious chaser to the bottom shelf liquor that is “Crystal Village” and Ben Kweller. I’m still not going to give it a PASS because I don’t think I would listen to it at any point in the future. This one time though, I didn’t mind it.
22. Ben Kweller, Wasted & Ready
THE FINAL TALLY
CD’s final score=31.8%
I was probably a little too harsh when listening to a few of those songs, mostly Ben Kweller and “Crystal Village” but that’s probably just as much me realizing how much I’m disappointed in my past self’s music tastes as it is them sucking. I’m sure when I look back at what I’m listening to now in ten years I will feel the same way. I’m actually surprised I like this many tracks from this album because I have randomly listened to other burnt CD’s of mine that are way, way worse. Hopefully I will stumble across one of the early ones soon, that way I can really embarrass myself.