Wednesday, September 26, 2007

Radio Free Hipster Episode 31: Sonic Potpourri

This edition of Radio Free Hipster is a bit less geeky than usual, and that’s a good thing. It’s great to expand our musical circle from time to time. Shall I elucidate?

The underlying message of the project – at least as I envision it in my own little head – is three-fold:

First, it’s that nerds make good music, that nerdy music is fun and exciting and sometimes challenging.

Secondly, it’s that nerds enjoy good music. Whether it’s simply because of subject matter (like the songs of The Four Eyes or MC Lars) or due to more ethereal, textural, technical qualities (like the masterful mash-ups of Go Home Productions).

And lastly, it’s that nerd music isn’t strictly limited to things that are, on the surface, dorky in the contemporary sense. For as long as there has been music there have been nerds making it, and I like to touch on that whenever possible. For example, I’m known to play Cheap Trick from time to time because Rick Nielson is both a dyed-in-the-wool Mac fanatic and the purveyor of one of the most inspired nerd musician “looks” in all of rock ‘n’ roll history. And this episode includes a track by The Police, which I consider fair game both because of Sting’s scholarly predisposition and the band’s overall nerd-like dedication to the crafts of songwriting and musicianship.

I reckon what I’m getting at here is that my inclusion criteria are pretty loose, and, as a result, in any given episode of RFH you may hear from a myriad of artists with varying types and degrees of geekitude.

While we often like to think of nerdiness as an exclusive quality, I like to promote it as more inclusive.

Nerds are everywhere. Some of us are just a bit more obvious than others.

Download Radio Free Hipster Episode 31: Sonic Potpourri [hosting provided by Antisocial] Size: 43.7 MB Running Time: 47:45

Show Notes:

Intro: Baddd Spellah – “Radio Free Hipster Theme (feat. Beefy)”
I never tire of this song. I wear it as a badge of geeky honor!

Track 1: Glenn Case – “Alex Chilton
Glenn a good example of the classic nerd/non-nerd dichotomy. He is both the geeky mind behind the Frontalittle Squad and a rocker of epic proportion.

Z’s 1st interlude: “I’ve been promising a free-form episode for a while now.”
I am both motivated and vexed by theme episodes, and I’ve found the most certain way for me to establish creative, interesting themes is to swear off the concept. ;)

Track 2: The Police – “So Lonely” / The Police vs. Jungle Brothers – “Lonely Jungle Brothers”
The Police were started by Stewart Copeland as a punk band, but later went on to craft some of the most challenging pop pieces of the 1980s. The Jungle Brothers were principle members of the Native Tongues Posse who were often overshadowed by fellow groups De La Soul and A Tribe Called Quest. When you put them both together it is magic!

Track 3: The Remus Lupins – “Loosen Your Tie”
Lyrically, this is one of my least favorite Lupins tracks, but musically it has such a massive groove as to more than make up for it.

Track 4: Steve BC – “Lone Bullet
Check out Steve BC at MySpace and over at Last FM. He’s got a staggering amount of material available for free, and I’m sure you’ll find something that speaks to you.

Track 5: The Advantage – “Super Mario Brothers 2 – Overworld”
This track could just as easily be called “Doki Doki Panic – Overworld.”

Track 6: Yohahifu – “Girdle”
Once again you get to hear me murder traditional Japanese pronunciation. Three cheers for consistency!

Track 7: Baddd Spellah – “Ten Year Old (ADHD Remix)
There are two remixes of mc chris's “Ten Year Old” that totally blow me away no matter how many times I hear them. This is the first. The second may make an appearance later in October.

Track 8: Beefy Write a Song About...
Beefy and The Advantage are two great tastes that taste great together.

Track 9: Goondocks – “Posse Needs Upgrades
If you didn’t download the Nerdcore Undercover album, do yourself a favor and at least grab this track. The Goons are a force of nature!

Z’s 2nd interlude: “He or she didn’t fill out the id3 tags.”
I love a good mash-up, but I abhor not giving adequate credit to mash-up artists. Anyone know who crafted “Lonely Jungle Brothers?”

Track 10: Ultraklystron – “Clerk”
Karl’s new (old) double album is great for long drives and housework. It’s great for general listening as well, but I tend to spend a lot of time driving and cleaning house.

Track 11: Datarock – “Fa-Fa-Fa”
If you can find a better Norwegian Dance Punk band than Datarock… please let me know.

Track 12: Jay-R – “My Other Car Is A Beatle
We stopped short, did a double take / He was looking so fly, I thought I wasn't awake. / He was obviously hooking up bass, I assume, / But then he turned a little button and the car went boom.
There are so many things wrong with the above quatrain that I simply don’t know where to start.

Track 13: Gorillaz – “19-2000”
When you put the man responsible for Tank Girl and the guy who brought us “Country House” together you really can’t be too surprised when the results are excellent.

Z’s final interlude: “A bunch of songs that have nothing in common.
Now that I’ve gotten my random playlist jones slaked I must begin preparation for the Halloween Crap-tacular. Right now I’m leaning toward making the first episode zombie-centered and the second one a little less stringent. We shall see.

Track 14: Random – “City Boy
I started my interview with Ran last weekend, and I have to say that he really is as mellow and intelligent as you’d imagine. I’m currently juggling two interviews, so hopefully I can get at least one polished and ready for public consumption before month’s end.

Thanks for taking the time to check out the podcast. As always, I appreciate your support and I hope found something therein that did it for you.

Your ideas and song suggestions are strongly encouraged, so keep those comments and emails coming. Look for episode 32 in a couple of weeks, and, in the meantime, check out the blog for the aforementioned nerd news and interviews.


Church said...

What's completely messed up is that, due to work "obligations", I entirely missed that Datarock song, but caught the shout-out. Sad commentary on modern times, if you ask me...

Weirdly, "Shut up! I'm listening to RFH! Bring me your problems later!" does not resonate well in corporate America.

Z. said...

Perhaps one day it will, Church. I remain hopeful. :)