On-the-go “shuffle” analysis


I’m on the brown line with a coffee thermos wedged between my thighs, a Blackberry in my hands, and my iPod set to “shuffle.” Here’s the play-by-play:

7:33 Deep Purple “Knockin’ at Your Back Door”-A song every bit as subtle as its name implies. An 80s reunion track that’s too long, mostly cheesy, and kickass for all the right and wrong reasons.

7:40 Genesis “In the Cage”-Christ. Another long one. Let’s get right to it…Genesis was an amazing band for a handful of years. I’d even argue their case through “Abacab.” This “Lamb Lies Down” track stands as one of the finest from the Peter Gabriel era.

7:48 SOiL “Pride”-These Chicago hellraisers couldn’t catch a spell of good luck if they had a magic wand and access to a voodoo priestess. They should’ve been as big as any of the heavy bands that hit it big in the early 00s, but were always victims of bad timing and circumstance. I love the insistence of the drums on this one.

7:51 Transplants “Sad But True”-That first Transplants album was kinda great. Whether it’s because of the profane and anthemic “Tall Cans in the Air” or this audio obit, I find myself hooked into revisiting their debut every six months or so.

7:54 Bloodhound Gang “The Ballad of Chasey Lain”-With the exception of this brown line trip, I always sing along with this one. Always. And I know that’s wrong.

7:56 Bob Mould “Heartbreak a Stranger”-Mould’s “Workbook” album was the right album at the right time in my life. As a fan, discovering that Mould didn’t need the blunt force trauma approach of Husker Du to make an impact was a revelation. This song has floored me for two decades now.

8:00 Mould’s still playing, and I’m passing the Merchandise Mart. Time to get packed up and ready to de-train.

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