Thursday, November 11, 2010

What You Should Have Heard #37

My Mix CDs

I’ve got a lot of music but limited space to hold it in, especially in my car. So I’ve gone the old tried-and-true way of making mix CDs to have access to as many bands as possible while driving. I’m going slightly old-school since I’m a bit backwards and have no iPod.

Most of the songs will be more upbeat, with probably only the occasional ballad or slower song included. I like to sing in the car, and the more upbeat songs are more fun to sing.

I’ll be going in alpha-numeric order with these, so if you’re wanting to argue with me about what Weezer songs should be included, you’re going to be waiting for a while.

My only limitations are that I use 80 min. discs, and I’m only going to use one disc per band/artist. I will make exceptions for only my most favorite bands with huge playlists (Foo Fighters and Self, off the top of my head), but I’d really like to boil everything down to just one disc.

Here’s the list guide:

Track # - Song Name - Album Name [Artist if album is by a different artist]

Flobots Mix CD

  1. Mayday!!! – Fight with Tools
  2. Same Thing – Fight with Tools
  3. Stand Up – Fight with Tools
  4. Fight with Tools – Fight with Tools
  5. Handlebars – Fight with Tools
  6. Combat – Fight with Tools
  7. The Rhythm Method (Move!) – Fight with Tools
  8. Rise – Fight with Tools
  9. The Form – Onomatopoeia
  10. Onomatopoeia – Onomatopoeia
  11. Headz N Da Sand – Onomatopoeia
  12. L’ennui – Onomatopoeia
  13. Magic – Onomatopoeia
  14. One Love – Present Platypus
  15. No W – Present Platypus
  16. Cracks in the Surface – Survival Story
  17. The Effect – Survival Story
  18. Defend Atlantis – Survival Story
  19. White Flag Warrior – Survival Story

I happened upon the Flobots by chance. It was either through Pandora or one of the various digital music channels I get through my cable subscription. Either way, I heard “Handlebars” and couldn’t get it out of my head. And it’s not just because it’s a catchy song, but it’s a powerful one. Listen to the lyrics. I like how it easily illustrates how easily simple dreams and ambitions can turn into something powerful, possibly destructive.

Before I had a chance really listen to the Flobots, I liked to think of them as a cross between Eminem and Rage Against the Machine, just a bit more mellow. The Eminem comparison comes through in Johnny 5’s voice and his rapping prowess. The Rage comparison is solely with the social activism. has the Flobots listed as a rap group, while their Wikipedia page calls them a rock and hip-hop group. I’d agree more with the Wiki page. When I think of rap, I don’t think of instruments. I think of sampling and drum machines and the like. The Flobots give us instrumentalization that we crave from rock while throwing in the odd string or horn every now and then. I tend to enjoy stuff like that.

The Flobots are very much an activist group. They’re liberal and against the Bush administration (Fight with Tools came out in 2007). They’re for social change and tolerance. Regardless of what you think about their politics, Johnny 5 and Yak are a couple of talented performers and believe in something strongly and are using their talent to spread their beliefs.

My two favorite Flobots songs, “Handlebars” and “Rise.”

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