Saturday, July 18, 2009

You Heard The Pop Mix In Your Ears
September 2002

Neu! – Isi
The Shins – Know Your Onion!
The English Beat – Two Swords
The Wipers – Mystery
Catherine Wheel – I Want To Touch You
The Leaving Trains – Light Rain
Husker Du – Flexible Flyer
R.E.M. – Imitation Of Life
Dean Schlabowske – Gary Gilmore’s Eyes
The Sonics – Have Love Will Travel
The Hollies – Postcard
Chuck Berry – Havana Moon
The Spongetones – Return The Boy
The Saints – Save Me

The The – Infected
Ministry – Flashback
Idlewild – You Held The World In Your Arms
Sonic Youth – Rain On Tin
Chapterhouse – There’s Still Life
The Replacements – Johnny’s Gonna Die
Heatmiser – Low-Flying Jets
Medicine – Defective
The Pop Group – She Is Beyond Good And Evil
Bauhaus – Dancing
Minor Threat – Good Guys (Don’t Wear White)

I don’t want to get too sentimental, but I used to really enjoy making pop mixes. (I could call them mix tapes, but who ever put anything but pop songs on a mix tape?) Rob Sheffield jostled a few memories loose for me in his book Love is a Mix Tape, so I thought it would be fun to look back at one of my own. You Heard the Pop Mix in Your Ears was made sophomore year of high school, back when I was doing this sort of thing pretty incessantly. The name follows my pattern (stolen from my sister) of taking a song from the mix and replacing a noun from the title with “pop mix,” and making other necessary adjustments. I could just as easily have called it Light Rain, as it was made while the weather was turning bad and school was starting up. I remember listening to it in my mom’s car a lot, and don’t think it was anything but cloudy that whole time. The songs themselves are generally somber, with intermittent sunshine.

Some things I notice looking at the tracklist:
--I’m usually more creative than starting a mix with the first song from an album, but the instrumental “Isi” is a pretty ideal opener, promising all sorts of great things to come with its lush beauty.
--“Gary Gilmore’s Eyes” is a cover of The Adverts’ classic from The Executioner’s Last Songs Americana-spectacular album, with some of the ladies from Freakwater on backing vocals I believe, and it makes a good case that punk songs can often be recast as country songs with minimal rearrangement, especially when they’re about American icons.
--The Shins and Idlewild were two of the few new bands I really liked at the time, because they helped me understand what it might have been like to be a new music listener in the 80s.
--Elliott Smith was easily Heatmiser’s greater songwriter, but Neil Gust’s “Low-Flying Jets” is the most thrilling song on Mic City Sons.

I don't care to reminisce too much. So what is the point of this post, you ask? I’ve made my first-ever digital mix tape! I’d call it my summer mix if the weather wasn’t as depressing today as it was back in September 2002. There are some summery songs on here, but let’s just call it Laughing With An Ear Of Pop.

[1] The Chills – Satin Doll
[2] Liz Phair – Fuck And Run
[3] Duke Ellington – In A Sentimental Mood
[4] St. Vincent – Laughing With A Mouth Of Blood
[5] Bloc Party – One More Chance
[6] Michael Jackson – Leave Me Alone
[7] Jimmy Jones – Good Timin’
[8] Heavenly – Wish Me Gone
[9] The Sleepover Disaster – Funnel Cloud
[10] God Help The Girl – God Help The Girl
[11] The Everly Brothers – Take A Message To Mary
[12] Camera Obscura – You Told A Lie
[13] The Temptations – It’s Growing
[14] Atlas Sound – Maybe Logic
[15] Stan Getz & Joao Gilberto – The Girl From Ipanema
[16] The Damned – Melody Lee
[17] Patrick Wolf – Damaris
[18] Moby – Mistake
[19] Lord Cut-Glass – Even Jesus Couldn’t Love You
[20] The Four Tops – Walk Away Renee
[21] Art Brut – Summer Job
[22] Ramones – Howling At The Moon (Sha-La-La)

Download here.

Note: I hope this is the proper way to disseminate a digital mix tape. I’ve seen them all over the blogs, but never downloaded one myself. Also, these songs would fit handily on a 90-minute cassette, if you feel so inclined.


Blogger aaron said...

man, i still need to borrow "art brut vs. satan". "summer job" is really good.

7:35 PM  

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