Submitted for the approval of the Mix Tape Appreciation Society, I humbly present ... "This Island Earth":
1. The Jam - "Absolute Beginners"
Despite competition from the likes of Pete Townshend and the Violent Femmes, this 1981 Jam single managed to stand out on the "Grosse Pointe Blank" soundtrack because of its sheer awesomeness. (Yep, that's a word. I just consulted a dictionary -- one which happens to exist solely in my mind.... But who cares? So what?)
2. The Grouch & Eligh feat. Gift of Gab and Pigeon John - "All In"
A summer blockbuster if I ever did hear one. (I realize it's still winter here in the Northland, but a man can dream, can't he?) A nod to Gift of Gab's pop-trumps-all Mighty Underdogs supergroup, perhaps?
3. Jack Splash - "Sly Stone, Part 2"
While I rarely stray far into mainstream-rap territory, I'm willing to make an exception for the gifted-as-can-be Jack Splash (who has A-list hip-hop supporters like Kanye West).
4. The Grates - "Carve Your Name"
Not since the Pixies' triumphant "Surfer Rosa" album has radio-ready college music rocked so hard and so fast. To such great heights this song will elevate you.
5. The SuperTacks - "The Top of Your World"
I've been on quite a Journey kick of late, so this Northland anthem (whose Ryan Van Slooten just released a phenomenal new solo album, "All But My Soul") really struck me as "should be heard by the masses, mullets in tow or not."
6. Steve Perry - "Strung Out"
7. U2 - "Big Girls are Best"
From the Target-exclusive "7" EP comes what is quite possibly U2's best song. And I'm not even kidding here: Great tune, great lyrics, great ... everything.
8. Nash Kato - "Zooey Suicide" [Acoustic vers.]
A rare (but why, Nash?) version of the Urge Overkill frontman's stellar solo single. Well worth seeking out.
9. The Waxwings - "Never So Clear"
Another one of the million-odd Brendan Benson-supported rock groups I hold near and dear to my ear(s).
10. The Smashing Pumpkins - "Sinfony"
A nice little instrumental piece from "Earphoria" before ...
11. Spoon - "The Mystery Zone"
... yet another immortal track from the current titans of indie rock. Austin, Texas, sure is one blessed little town.
12. Hell on Wheels - "One Sperm Across Your Heart"
An interesting choice for a song title to be sure, but, with a sound straight out of the GrndNtl Brnds playbook, who's to argue with these silly, Mike Watt and Evan Dando-referencing Swedes?
13. Caviar - "Flawed Like a Diamond"
Pure pop bliss. Man, I love music. And my job. And my life. And my girl. And my home. And my entourage. (Umm....)
See, that's the kind of reaction you'll get from Caviar too, so listen up!
14. BombPop - "Sugar Coated"
Similarly, listening to the blissed-out BombPop is a joyous occasion. I wonder what ever happened to these guys.
15. Mono Puff - "Hillbilly Drummer Girl"
A bit on the silly side, but, considering Mono Puff is John Flansburgh from They Might Be Giants, maybe this is 100 percent the true story of a hillbilly drummer girl?
16. Zipthunk! - "Daddy Girl"
Pointy green things and a dancer who's allergic to clothes from Atlanta? Zipthunk! knows how to party!
17. Atmosphere - "Good Daddy"
Such a sweet song ... until the last line.
18. Compulsion - "It's Great"
Makes me wish I could do more than write about music. Wouldn't it be cool to jump on any of the Twin Ports' many fine stages and have this fiery guitar part crackling out of your amplifier? I think so.
19. Ultrababyfat - "Twist"
If David Cross lets these guys open shows for him, you know they're worth your time.
20. The Posies - "Start a Life"
Get past the sleepy intro and you're in for quite a treat.
21. Self - "Glued to the Girl"
Somehow this song's utter brilliance had escaped me until just a few weeks ago. I should've had this one on repeat a long, long time ago.
22. Ben Lee - "Catch My Disease"
If your disease is ______ _____, then I'm already there, Benjamin.
23. fun. - "I Wanna Be the One"
No more tears: The magic that was the Format is back with fun., and fun. will be in Duluth early next month. How's that for good news, my friends?
Thus concludes your sixty-sixth dose of SHAKE*YOUR*SHORES, the awesome mix tape series formerly known as "Don't Tell a Soul." I hope you enjoyed yourself.
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