Bitching Brew

Monday, July 03, 2006

Favourite songs.

When I make mix tapes or playlists, I tend to avoid sticking a load of favourites together; the themed approach is better. Since each song evokes different feelings, some kind of emotional flow needs to be maintained. Not a hodge-podge.

If I were to mix together my favourite songs, in no particular order, you’d see something like this. Many of them carry strong associations. A few are outstanding pieces of music. Still others are mediocre, or even plain dumb, but I love them still.


  • New York City Serenade – Bruce Springsteen
  • Black Celebration – Depeche Mode
  • Sometimes – My Bloody Valentine (I can hardly make out a word, but I don’t need to.)
  • Bulletproof – The Afghan Whigs (This is my song.)
  • Hallelujah – Jeff Buckley
  • Hyper-Ballad – Bjork
  • Downbound Train – Bruce Springsteen (I’m instinctively drawn to this song. I’m not entirely clear why; it’s not even very good. Loss occasioned by circumstance? Too easy. There's something here.)
  • The Magnificent Seven – The Clash (My favourite Clash song. Nuff said.)
  • Oh! Darling – The Beatles (There’s a daft story behind this. Don’t ask.)
  • Next Exit – Interpol (Far from Interpol’s best song, but I love listening to it while staring out a train window. For some reason, it conjures up the thrill of travel, departure… and emigration. This song makes me want to share that thrill with someone.)
  • When We Two Parted – The Afghan Whigs
  • In These Arms – Bon Jovi (OK. Confession time: this would be my karaoke song. Someday, I’m going to scare a woman away by singing this to her. I’m resigned to that fate.)
  • I’m A Cuckoo – Belle & Sebastian
  • Station to Station – David Bowie (It’s almost impossible to pull off even a half-decent ten-minute song. This isn’t just half-decent; it’s awesome, in the best sense of the word.)
  • Disintegration – The Cure
  • Jenny Was A Friend of Mine – The Killers (I was a little loath to put a Killers song on my list, but I’d have been lying had I not included this. This is my Rock Star song: I’m apt to wear a sneer after hearing it.)
  • I Know It’s Over – The Smiths (Melancholy, tragic beauty.)
  • Perfect Kiss – New Order (I always think of Paris when I hear it. I’m probably the only person who will ever make that connection. Because it’s weird.)
  • When A Man Loves A Woman – Percy Sledge (Just because.)
  • A Love Supreme/Please Stay (Once You Go Away) – The Twilight Singers

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