Instant Playlist - December 1 2011
“How You Remind Me”
Pianist Bradlee and friends reinvent Nickel-back’s neo-grunge anthem as Motown- style soul, and the fact that it actually works makes a tribute out of what was probably intended as a parody.
“The Cowboys’ Christmas Ball” (Island)
Brandon Flowers and company continue their tradition of releasing a yearly Christmas single, this time a musical setting of Texan scribe William Lawrence Chittenden’s poem about the hootin’ and a-hollerin’ that ensues when rowdy ranch hands commence to dancin’.
“Rusk” (Dracula Horse)
Throbbing blasts of distortion sear the surface of this otherwise thoroughly narcotic exercise in down-tempo Orange Sunshine drone-psych.
Kaskade and Skrillex
“Lick It” (Ultra)
Think superstar DJs performing open-skull surgery on you at a glitter-dusted European superclub with a battery-powered Black & Decker Compact Lithium Ion Drill. Lick it, indeed.
“Undertaker” (Idée Fixe)
If the skeletal guitars and haunting cellos don’t get you, Bry Webb’s ghosttown vocals will seal the deal. This is alt-country so dark and downbeat it makes Sam Beam seem like Hank Williams III on a two-week Jack jag.
“Battles” (Saddle Creek)
Pujol makes his home in Tennessee, but the garage-tastic sound here suggests England back when Pete Townshend had a gorgeous head of mod hair and the Rolling Stones were kicking major amounts of ass at the Marquee Club.
“Ménage à Trois” (Ultra)
Here’s betting that said union took place at the foot of a giant malfunctioning electronic transformer in a shitstorm of flashing strobe lights, while the three people in question fucked like the Chemical Brothers never went out of style.
“Are You Jealous of the Dead?” (Independent)
Well, no, actually. More that we feel sorry for them, mostly because they’ll never get to hear this Sinéad-meets-gothic-surf exercise in mournful art-punk.
“Number Thirteen” (Relapse)
From Portland, Oregon’s Red Fang, the sludge-tastic stoner-metal groove of “Number Thirteen” plays like the soundtrack to someone getting shit-kicked at a biker bar. Which, come to think of it, is exactly what happened to us the last time we were in Portland.
“Ruby Soho” (Collective Sounds)
The Jamaican reggae legend takes Rancid’s pop-punk hit and turns it into pure Trojan Records–style rocksteady. And you really oughta hear what he does with the Clash’s “Guns of Brixton”.
“Paradisco” (Because Music)
Given its stuttering beat and jerky-disco groove, it’s not hard to figure out that Charlotte Gainsbourg’s seven-minute-plus dance-floor odyssey (it’s almost as long as “Stairway to Heaven”!) was written and produced by Beck, but she makes it hers through sheer Euro cool.