People are always saying that what they love about tripping, is the feeling of floating, or the many laughs and peeing-of-the-pants that may occur. In my case, my favorite thing about getting baked is listening to some good albums that inspire me to do things I wouldn’t be doing now. If it wasn’t for music I wouldn’t be learning how to play the instruments I own, writing my repulsive reviews, or reading books. I’d be playing video games, while singing some Metallica. That sounds horrible.
15. Modest Mouse – The Moon and Antarctica
I’ve definitely grown to like Modest Mouse a lot more than I did when I first heard “Float On”, which was getting them copious amounts of radio play. The Moon and Antarctica is a poignant third release for the band, being their major label debut on Epic. This album is the complete soundtrack to my day. Beginning with a good, hip song to start off the day, then making its way through some toned down tracks, and finally ending with a few rousing songs.
14. The Cure – Disintegration
Yeah, that’s right, I like The Cure. They are, hands down, one of my favorite bands in general. May not discuss them too much, but they’ve earned a great place in this tiny heart of mine. Not a metaphoric tiny heart, but I seriously have a tiny heart. I’m going to die.
The Cure’s Disintegration, is one album that is loved by many, and known to be The Cure at their best. I still do not know if I agree with them, seeing how I haven’t listened to everything yet. But I do like to listen to this on high, and just write my little stories and essays dealing with the themes in Shakespeare.
13. Broken Social Scene – You Forgot It in People
According to Pitchfork Media, Broken Social Scene has “unfiltered creativity and kinetic energy”, and that their album, You Forgot It in People, was “perfect pop.” Of course, they gave the album a 9.2 (Damn you, Pitchfork, with your decimal placed ratings; Editor: We do it too..) Well, for me, this album is a mixture of pop, with absolute euphonic tracks. Not only some good pop songs, but some phat beats, too. If I were a reviewer over at the Fork, I’d give this beauty a 9.3.
12. Of Montreal – Satanic Panic in the Attic
Of Montreal, who kicks some musical ass, is a native band from the U.S. that has a sound that like the music from the era known as the 70’s. Satanic Panic in the Attic is a groovy album, that has a mystic flow to it. From beginning to end, this record has tracks full of heavenly sounds, and great rhythms with clapping.
11. The Microphones – The Glow Pt. 2/Mt. Eerie
Phil Elverum left behind an influential band, The Microphones, after releasing their final album, Mount Eerie, to create another band of the same name. Even though we will not see a Microphones “reunion” anytime soon, we luckily have the band’s albums, and EPs to buy from the internet or local record store (like Best Buy would have it, ha, ha), or download from friends/torrents/p2p’s.
The Glow Pt. 2 is The Microphones. It holds as Elverum’s most precious and definitive work, with twenty songs full of dreamlike and unique sounds, and a deal of nostalgia. Some key songs: The Glow Pt. 2; The Moon; Instrumental; I Felt Your Shape; My Warm Blood.
For a more musical and less lyrically written album, Mount Eerie is great in the way that Pink Floyd’s feature film, The Wall, can be understood by the viewer by the dramatic scenes and few lines that are spoken. Mount Eerie has to be taken in by listening to the music, and since I am more of a music lover compared to my likeness of lyrics, this album is a plausible chef d’oeuvre.
10. Sigur Rós – ()
My copy of Sigur Rós’ () is a bit off on the track listing, seeing that the album starts with track number five and ends with track four, but has all the other tracks scrambled in the middle. This is how sweet downloaded albums can be after unzip the folders, but that does not really matter much. What does matter is when you are having a fatty and you think “I want to listen to some music, but something that is chilled, laid back, and I don’t want to be able to understand a damn thing they are saying.” The only answer, of course, is to bust out () and take a go with it.
9. Xiu Xiu – Fabulous Muscles
After you are done baking to some of the psychedelic Sigur Rós, take it up a notch with Jamie Stewart and Co. in Xiu Xiu, with their album Fabulous Muscles. The record has some poppy beats, along with Stewart’s unique voice. Xiu Xiu has this sound that really takes you under and over its delicate convictions in nearly every song. Most [of the tracks] are based around Stewart’s life and his families frailty.
8.Brand New – Deja Entendu
I am never going to get away from that “Emo” title that I have had hanging over my head for the past three years, which is around the time this album came out. So while everyone is obsessing and oppressing over Brand New’s latest, The Devil and God Are Raging Inside Me, let us remember the favorite child, Deja Entendu. It is energetic, and yet, full of ecstasy lyrically and musically. I like to think of Jesse Lacey playing the part of Apollo in Greek mythology. According to Wikipedia, Apollo was “the archer-god of medicine and healing, light, truth” “and director of their choir, he is a god of music and poetry.” Sound like someone you know?
7. The Beatles – Abbey Road
The 60’s had been a good time. William S. Burroughs’ Naked Lunch became popular in Europe and the counter culture, The Velvet Underground released The Velvet Underground and Nico, and The Beatles saved Rock N’ Roll in America. Abbey Road is a blissful album, that anyone can listen to and get turned on in some way by it’s simple, easy-going choruses. Another nice trait this album has, is that the songs do not all sound the same at all. Most sound like they could be by a different band, but still has that Beatles’ sounds of Lennon, and Britain’s greatest living icon, Paul McCartney.
6. Circulatory System – Circulatory System
It has twenty two songs, and is fifty-seven minutes and eight seconds in length. This album is either good for listening to it in one deep sitting, or listening to it continuously throughout the day. I would say the latter. Filled to the brim with different sounds from different instruments, Circulatory System’s self-titled is a gem. If you have never listened to them before, give this album a try and get back to me. Comment on them, or do something better – tell your friends. They will love you for telling them about good music.
5. Interpol – Turn On the Bright Lights
Writing this “Top Whatever” list really brings me down, but I like it. I get to listen to a little bit of everything that I have been forgetting about since I started trying to get into “new” music. I never listened to Interpol until last year, and I’ve started trying to branch out to different bands since then, like Broken Social Scene. As for Interpol’s impassive debut album, Turn On the Bright Lights, it’s easily notable as being the better of the two albums the band has out. The second being Antics, which lives up to it’s predecessor. Turn On the Bright Lights has been compared to having a Joy Division sound. Also, Interpol front man, Paul Banks, has been noted as having a voice like Ian Curtis’. Turn On the Bright Lights is a brilliant first record for a band like Interpol.
4. Cursive – The Ugly Organ
I have one question before doing this snippet – Do people in Omaha have a major disgust towards Saddle Creek, or do they like the Creek Kids? You may answer in the comments.
Singing along to albums with friends can be good times, especially when you are chanting these lyrics exposing Cursive’s singer/songwriter, guitarist/organist, Tim Kasher, who loves telling stories it seems. With Domestica, Kasher sings of a couple who fight, and fight. Tearing themselves apart. Even in Cursive’s last album, Happy Hollow, Kasher seems to combine different stories to make one story of a town and its people. (See: Cursive – Happy Hollow; Review)
The Ugly Organ is a story of murder, love, and infidelity. The music has a more modern rock sound, and not only rough guitar and some distortion, but cello and an overwhelming chanting part all will love.
3. At the Drive-In – The Relationship of Command
Being At the Drive-In’s last record, The Relationship of Command is their best album. It has flying guitar riffs, funky bass lines, and agile lyrics. This is one of those records that keeps your heart beating after it has finished, most likely leaving a mark on the inside.
2. Alkaline Trio – Goddamnit
Girl break your heart? Well, drink it off. If you want to just rock out to some good old punk rock (\m/), turn on the Trio’s first record, Goddamnit. I love Alkaline Trio’s old music compared to their newer albums like Good Mourning, and Crimson. Both of those albums sound like Matt Skiba (Guitar/Vocals) and Dan Andriano (Bass/Vocals) tried really hard to write these hair-raising songs. Trying to show themselves up, but Goddamnit has a more authentic sound to it, rather than the songwriters ran out of things to say.
1. Radiohead – Hail To the Thief/OK Computer
Radiohead is the father of imagery music. When I listen to them, I like to “Rotoscope.” What is rotoscoping? Check out Wikipedia. But I have a different meaning for it. The day I bought Radiohead’s Hail To the Thief, my friends and I drove around for the entire day tripping to it. During this trip, I had visioned everything as being rotoscoped like a Richard Linklater movie.Ever since, I have been listening to Radiohead’s Hail To the Thief on very special occasions. The album has a magnificent vibe to it musically, with well done production in sound and programming.
Having a gracious layout in musicianship, the most in-between record for Radiohead is their 1997 release, OK Computer, which is taken as being their best album. Although OK Computer has a good sound, and some pretty lyrics, it doesn’t have the beats or the advanced programming it’s descendants have. Instead, the gem has a fresh sound and contains some of the greatest songs ever written in the past 25 years.
So next time you’re blazing, be sure to put down the chips and turn up the tunes.
– Ian Cruz
PS; Expect a podcast with these songs in the future.