Thursday, December 29, 2005

Soundtrack to 2005: "Out of the Desert and Into the Sun"

Here we go. Songs that I've loved, songs that have meaning. Stuff I dug this year.


"Chelsea" by Counting Crows
I never had light in my eyes anyway/Maybe things are different these days...
My favorite song from "Across a Wire." I love the beginning, the horns. The song is sad and tired and resigned. The way I feel sometimes.

"Sitting, Waiting, Wishing" by Jack Johnson
I can't always be playing, playing your fool...
I like Jack Johnson a lot, and this single from "In Between Dreams" is a catchy tune. I also like the second verse: "I sang your songs, I danced your dance/I gave your friends all a chance/Putting up with them wasn't worth never having you." Awesome. The words of a man who wants to know where he stands.

"Landed" by Ben Folds
I've been on some other planet/Come pick me up, I've landed...
Ben's second solo album was kind of a mixed bag for me, for reasons I've already mentioned. But I loved this single from the moment I heard it. And the story of a man coming out of the fog of a bad relationship is one I can appreciate. Great tune, great lyrics, and like the best of Ben's work, it makes me mash my fingers on my desk in mock-piano playing during the chorus.

"Last Episode Heartache" by Me
And the same dark fate that pulled at Luke now pulls his dad, and it draws him in/Last Episode Heartache...
I was rather proud of this parody, so I'm including it here. I think it's almost as good as my "fake emo song" from last year.

"I Will Not Take These Things For Granted" by Toad the Wet Sprocket
And if I'm lonely here, I'm lonely here/On the telephone, you offer reassurance...
I'm pretty sure I bought TTWS's "Fear" album this year. Though "Walk on the Ocean" and "All I Want" are my favorite tracks, this one has become more meaningful to me. There are so many things in life that we let pass by unnoticed because we are so busy wanting something we can't or shouldn't have. It's such a waste. We need to be more grateful for the simple joy of being alive.

"By My Side" by INXS
In the dark of night, those faces they haunt me/And I wish you were so close to me...
I admit it freely: the clever idea worked. Thanks to the TV show "Rockstar:INXS," I became a fan of their music. This song is my favorite (followed by "Mystify" and "Never Tear Us Apart"). And I still think Marty Casey was ROBBED.

"A Million Pieces" by Newsboys
Why you holdin' grudges in old jars? Why you wanna show off all your scars?
This song is so reassuring for me. Whenever I feel myself get burdened by stuff in my life, whenever I get distressed, it's likely that at some point, I'll put this song on, close my eyes, and just breathe in and out. Such a relief in this truth. Just lay the burden down.

"Undefeated" by Audio Adrenaline
Like a band of gypsies we go rollin down the highway...
The whole album, "Until My Heart Caves In," is just great. But this song is my favorite from it.

"On Your Porch" by The Format
what's left to lose, you've done enough/and if you fail well then you fail but not to us...
I've mentioned this one recently. It means a lot to me for a lot of reasons, the most important of which is, it's a sad-sounding song about hope. That alone, I can relate to. I sound sad often, but I'm more hopeful than I let on.

"It'll All Work Out" by Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers
It'll all work out eventually/Better off with him than here with me
One of so many great songs on the "Elizabethtown" soundtrack. Great Tom Petty track.

"Hard Times" by eastmountainsouth
Let us pause in life's pleasures and count its many tears/while we all sup sorrow with the poor...
Another beautiful track from the soundtrack. I find that my musical tastes are shifting this way. Very old-timey.

"Jackson" by Johnny and June Cash
We got married in a fever/hotter than a pepper sprout...
I love the interplay between Johnny and June in this song. There's so much joy here. And it's a fun, bouncy tune. I fell in love with Cash's music this year.

"Hell Yes" by Beck
Now i'm cleaning the floor/my beat is correct
Another fun song. I love that it's Christina Ricci in the background saying "please enjoy." Hopefully, Beck's alleged Scientology interests won't funk up his music, cuz i'm diggin this.

"Colorful" by The Verve Pipe
You are more beautiful when you awake/Than most are in a lifetime
This song is from the "Rock Star" soundtrack (yes, the film with Mark Wahlberg). It's from the end of the movie when he cut his hair and started playing early-90's singer-songwriter rock at coffee houses. I know, it's cheesy and goofy, but I like the song. So there.

"Square One" by Coldplay
From the start in your own way, you just want/Somebody listening to what you say
I know, I know. Try to stifle your Coldplay-gag-reflex. The whole album is gobbledy-goop lyrically, but every once in a while, Chris Martin strings together a few lines that make sense. One such instance is the line quoted above. My favorite song on a halfway decent album.

"Chicago" by Sufjan Stevens
you came to take us (all things go, all things go)/to recreate us (all things grow, all things grow)
How was I not on the Sufjan wagon sooner? Why didn't I listen to you people? "Illinoise" is a great album, and this song is one of my favorites from it. When I first heard the song online, I was convinced about halfway through that I needed to buy the album as soon as possible. Money well spent. Looking forward to the other 48 states.

"Mushaboom" by Feist
And we'll collect the moments one by one/I guess that's how the future's done
I defy you to not like this song. DEFY. It will get stuck in your head, and you'll spend the rest of the day bopping around to it's beat. You'll even catch yourself saying "mushaboom, mushaboom" under your breath. No, I don't know what it means either, and I don't care. I love her voice.

"Change" by Tracy Chapman
If you knew that you would die today/If you saw the face of God and love/Would you change?
I heard this song several months ago, and it stuck with me. Tracy Chapman is one of those artists that never seems to really be wildly popular, but her material is always good. I loved "Fast Car," I really liked "Gimme One Reason," and I really like "Change."

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