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List #6: Ten Tracks I’ve Been Obsessed With at Some Point In My Life

14 June, 2009

There are obviously more than ten of these. But these are a selection that stand out for various reasons, such as the duration of the time in which I was so obsessed, or the recent nature of the obsession, or… The list (ha) goes on. These are all songs that I’ve just loved listening to, often on repeat, over and over again, over a certain period of time. They are not, it must be noted, the most played songs in my library, nor are they (probably) my favorite songs. This will probably be my last music-related list for a while; I’ll probably go on to more mundane things that often seem to be more interesting, such as a list of bets my brother has lost, or books people have borrowed from me, or things I have been lent and never gave back. As always, suggestions are welcome. And without further ado (I saw Much Ado About Nothing today), the list.

  • Bruises – Chairlift: As already mentioned, this is off the CD Does You Inspire You. A very nice peppy number, its only flaw to me is that I don’t really like when the second voice comes in (which is actually rare for me; I usually love duets). Nevertheless, it’s great musically, the beat is just fun, and the… synthesizer? Fake theremin? Instrument solo at the end is a great sound to end it on. And yeah, I guess it was in a commercial or something. Didn’t see it.
  • Chances Are – Bob Seger and Martina McBride: And here we go with me liking duets. This is sort of typical 90s melodramatic semi-country, which is great. Apparently from some movie Hope Floats, which I have never seen. Anyway, I like it a lot. I also love Bob Seger in general, so that helps. I basically got a bunch of his music, and this stood out because it was a duet.
  • Inama Nushif (Montage) – Brian Tyler: This is the reason the title of this list is “Tracks” and not “Songs.” The Children of Dune miniseries from the Scifi Channel is not good. Don’t see it. Its music isn’t that great either. But this track stands out. It’s fairly midde eastern with the calssic uplifting chord progression found in a lot of movies, especially over emotional montages. Like someone being buried alive. And breaking a tank of gas with an alien in it. You know, that kind of stuff. Anyway, this was really my first experience with the eastern-flavored trend in soundtracks which has become very common nowadays. It helps that all of Dune pretty much is Arabic culture and language, loosely altered. And aliens.
  • In the Sun – Joseph Arthur: This is another emotional montage song, although clearly it is actually a song rather than a section of a soundtrack. I actually first heard it in the alternate ending to The Bourne Identity, which I greatly prefer to the original, primarily because of this song. I hadn’t heard much of Joseph Arthur at the time, and still haven’t really, but this really stood out and I just loved the sort of unexpected way I found it.
  • God Rest Ye Merry Gentlemen/We Three Kings – Barenaked Ladies and Sarah McLachlan: Clearly not a montage song. I heard this on the radio of all places, which is only very rarely the way I discover music nowadays. (I can no longer deal with ad breaks and not liking songs, I overly surf and I only listen when I have no iPod, and I’m usually pretty unsatisfied.) As I have mentioned (many times) before, I love two melodies converging, and this is just that. I also love the Barenaked Ladies, and God Rest Ye Merry Gentlemen is my favorite Christmas carol. So, this is pretty much perfect. I also still have marathon listening sessions of this song, even when it’s not Christmastime. Weird, I know.
  • L’aveu – Garou: This could be an emotional montage song, but isn’t, at least not that I know of. Garou is a French-Canadian singer who is very similar to the likes of Joe Cocker and Bob Seger. His subject matter is entirely different, but the voice is similar, especially to Cocker. The songs drip with melodrama and emotion, and for a long time I had a sneaking sense that, if they were in English, I would hate them, but the French carries them through with just the right amount of cool so I love them. I first heard them in French class, and was hooked ever since. I recently had the opportunity to test my theory, because Garou has released an English album. I was right. It sucked.
  • For the Widows in Paradise; For the Fatherless in Ypsilanti – Sufjan Stevens: Emotional montage! The last one in this list, I think. This one I first heard on the OC, played over a funeral or somesuch. It’s very calming and peaceful, if very melancholy. Probably my favorite song that Stevens has done, although I have an immense respect for his idea to do one album for every state. I don’t think it’ll ever get done, but I admire the man. This one is from his Michigan album, I believe (correct me if I’m wrong).
  • All These Things That I’ve Done – The Killers: Okay, well here’s another I heard first on the OC. Or at least I heard the Killers first on the show. I can’t remember if they played this song. Anyway, in the same vein as Meatloaf, this song is many in one, starting as a slow solo and ending with a gospel chorus number. I love it.
  • Graceland – Alison Krauss and Jerry Douglas: This is, as far as I can tell, not officially released. I ripped this from the PBS broadcast of Paul Simon’s Gershwin Award Ceremony. I love the song in the first place (second only to “African Skies” of Simon songs in my book), and I love the performers, so how could you go wrong. The bending of the dobro goes just perfect with the feel of this song, and it adds so much. If anyone knows whether there is an album of this concert/ceremony officially, let me know and I’ll buy it in a second.
  • Glory Days – Bruce Springsteen: Last but not least. This song was one that I tried to connect with a specific time in my life, a specific relationship. It failed, as did the relationship, but I still love the song. I think I first heard it on the car ride back from meeting a girl, and the rest was (not) history.

So, there are ten. As I said, there are many more, some more temporally tied, others just because I loved the songs. For example, a song that satisfies both categories just came up on my iTunes (“This Year” by the Mountain Goats). Listening to my top 500 played I’m sure I’d come up with nine or ten more in an hour. Given that I listen to music pretty much constantly, it’s not hard to find them. What are some that you’ve loved at a particular time, whether you’ve discarded them later, or still love them just as much?

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