Friday Random 10: The 400 Blows

So titled because for months, ever since losing my iTunes statistics, I have been steadily working my way back through listening to my entire collection, a process that will take years. I’ve gone about it in two ways, first listening to all my mixes in order, secondly using a set of smart playlists. The most significant of the latter is my “Never Played” playlist, which selects 400 unplayed tunes at random from my library for the iPod (400 was experimentally about the right number to fit the playlist, which might include a large percentage of losslessly ripped songs, onto the iPod and still have room for other content). And the 400 “blows” because I will continue to see numbers like “now playing 21 of 400,” “now playing 16 of 400,” etc. until the library is all listened to. To mix a rarely stirred metaphor, I feel like Sisyphus even thinking about it.

Choosing the “Shuffle Songs” menu option on the iPod, which shuffles through the entire iPod, is kind of a relief. Of course the only time I do this is on Fridays, but it’s a nice reprieve nonetheless.

  1. Sufjan Stevens, “Come On! Feel the Illinoise! Part One: The World&rdsquo; Columbian Exposition; Part II: Carl Sandburg Visits Me In A Dream” (Illinoise)
  2. Sheldon Allman, “Schizophrenic Baby” (Folk Songs for the 21st Century)
  3. Doves, “Words” (The Last Broadcast)
  4. The White Stripes, “Fell In Love With a Girl” (via the Peel Box)
  5. John Cale, “Reading My Mind” (Hobosapiens)
  6. Mission of Burma, “He Is/She Is” (Peking Spring)
  7. PINE*am, “Gymnopedie 0.1” (EP)
  8. Dntel, “Last Songs” (Life is Full of Possibilities)
  9. Tori Amos, “Parasol” (The Beekeeper)
  10. Radiohead, “Fog” (Knives Out EP)

What a bizarre assemblage. The Sheldon Allman track is the worst kind of novelty, a catchy one. The John Cale track includes about a minute of vituperative Italian dialogue over motorcycle noise. The PINE*am track is some sort of clanking electronica track with wispy female vocals over it, and bears no resemblance to the Satie composition by the same name. There are also some serious songs, mostly owing to the Doves and Dntel albums finally surfacing on eMusic.

But “Fog.” Hmm. Might have to do something with this song.

Neko Case followup

Following my cryptic note from Tuesday, a quick confirmation that the new Neko album is in fact the most amazing thing to happen to me musically in many weeks, both because of Neko’s consistently astonishing artistic evolution and the peerless keyboard work of the Band’s Garth Hudson.

I just got tickets for her show April 5 at the Roxy. Should be a good time.