David Bowie – Blackstar

 Blackstar_album_cover

Where were you when you found out David Bowie died? Seems like a dream or a hypothetical question, doesn’t it? Sitting on the couch last night, sipping on a drink while watching some old silent movies from 90 years ago (hipster alert!), I saw something come across my Facebook feed that seemed like a hoax – “David Bowie dead at age 69 after an 18 month battle with cancer”. I still couldn’t believe it. I waited an hour or so and checked again – confirmed as true. I couldn’t believe it. David Bowie seemed indestructible, and even odder – had released an album 2 days ago. My initial impressions “David Bowie ★ 1st impressions – I have enjoyed this record the 1st two times I’ve listened to it. Gratuitous sax is an apt description, but it fits the music well. My favorite Bowie album (by far) is Station to Station, and this one reminds me a bit of that one. Much better than The Next Day, but as far as modern Bowie goes I’d rate it below Earthling and Heathen. Some of my favorite Bowie lyrics “I’ve got scars that can’t be seen” along with lyrics that I absolutely hate “Man, she punched me like a dude”. Happy 69th to David Jones aka David Bowie. A solid record.” In the context of David Bowie’s death, I’ve given Blackstar about a dozen more spins. And my perspective has changed.

Continue reading

LCD Soundsystem – Losing My Edge

LCD Sound

Attack of the Killer Track! is a series that explores tracks from artists from a variety of genres. Some of the tracks were singles, some of them were obscure b-sides or long forgotten album tracks. One thing is certain – all of them are killer tracks.

Grunge wasn’t REALLY born in Seattle, WA now was it? No, no – it has its origins in the grittier city of Tacoma, WA with the garage rock band The Sonics. Punk wasn’t REALLY 1st bandied about by the Sex Pistols now was it? Nope – have you heard of The Modern Lovers (later covered by the Sex Pistols). How about that band that featured Damon Albarn and Liam Gallagher? Sorry – made that part up. “Losing My Edge” by LCD Soundsystem is a song about hipsters, by a hipster, for hipsters, making fun of hipsters. If there is anything you’ve taken away from my writings I’d hope you understand – I’m in both camps constantly. As I’ve gotten older I’ve lost the self-important edge that goes with knowing all the complicated relationships and scenes from music over the years (though the knowledge has stayed in my brain). What does it all matter? Anyone can look up anything on the internet at anytime and be hip to the secrets of the indie elitist. This song features a repetitive and catchy dance beat as James Murphy spouts off about various scenes and bands from the last 50 years. He always comes back to the refrain “I was there – I was there” – which becomes funnier as the song progresses. The song was released as a 12″ single on July 8, 2002 on the DFA Record label (owned by James Murphy). The video features Murphy being slapped repeatedly as he mimes along (in an edited version). My beloved Sonics get a shout out at the end. Key lyrics:

I was there in 1968.
I was there at the first Can show in Cologne.
I’m losing my edge.

I was there in 1974 at the first Suicide practices in a loft in New York City.
I was working on the organ sounds with much patience.

I used to work in the record store.
I had everything before anyone.

I heard you have a compilation of every good song ever done by anybody.
Every great song by the Beach Boys. All the underground hits.