The last day of the Music Diary Project! I know that some people stopped keeping track on Friday, but I thought I would go through the weekend as my music listening habits tend to be very different on Saturday and Sunday than they are during the week (namely because I mostly listen to music in the car on the weekends, but also because I’m usually only make the time to listen to cassettes on the weekend.)
Last weekend I ordered three cassettes from Burger Records and they arrived mid-week, but I didn’t make time to listen to them until this morning while I was straightening up, prepping laundry, etc. I have a special fondness for cassettes — some of the first releases I owned growing up were on cassette. Even though the audio quality isn’t great, there’s an atmosphere and a tactile experience to listening to cassettes that I appreciate and doubt that I’ll outgrow. There are a few great cassette labels out there right now, but Burger is probably one of my favorites.
- Peach Kelli Pop, s/t cassette (Burger Records)
Unfortunately, the audio on this is really, really muddled. Fortunately, the pop on this shines through (at least, if you’re not super picky about production.) Peach Kelli Pop is the side project of Alli Hanlon from The White Wires (whose debut album I listened to earlier this week after loving their contribution to Under the Covers vol. 2, which I reviewed last week.) Allie’s debut cassette has 10 songs on it and has been released in a limited batch of 250 copies.
- Miss Chain & The Broken Heels, On A Bittersweet Ride (Burger Records)
Out of the three tapes I ordered from Burger, this one was probably my favorite upon first listen, which came as sort of a surprise to me. I don’t know why, but I was a touch skeptical of the tape when I was placing my order, but decided to get it anyway & I’m glad that I did.
- Summer Twins, s/t cassette (Burger Records)
Out of the three cassettes I listen to, this one probably resonates with me the least (maybe because I’ve already heard some of the songs? Or maybe because I’ve just reached girly pop overload at this point. Who knows!)
- Misc. songs in the car, Mo’ Money Mo’ Problems and Did It On ‘Em
In the car, I started out listening to Top 40 (I think a Ke$ha song might have been on?) My rule of thumb for the radio is “listen for what might be played next,” so I’m likely to listen to a lot of mediocre stuff that I don’t really enjoy in the hopes that something great might follow. I turn off the radio for awhile because it sounds like my car is making a weird noise, but it turns out that it’s just the wind. When I turn the radio back on, I scan in between stations. I stumble upon “Mo Money Mo Problems” just as Biggie’s rap is starting & I’m totally stoked because it’s one of my favorite songs. It’s interesting to hear it on the radio now — words that were edited out for radio play when I was growing up are now left intact — in some ways, that makes hearing the song on the radio now a totally different experience.
- J .Church, Arbor Vitae
We’re having amazing sunny weather, so on my way home I listen to Arbor Vitae by J. Church. Nothing sounds as good to me in the summer as pop punk does.
- Various Artists, Tiny Idols vol. III
I’ve had this CD wedged into a storage pocket on the passenger side of my car for the last few weeks, just waiting for the right time to break it out again. It was a perfect compliment to the J. Church album and got me through another hour of driving around (one of the worst things about where I live now is that it’s so far from everywhere I ever need to go, ever, unless you count my office, in which case it’s walking distance.)
- Smashing Pumpkins, Lull EP
The last thing that I listen to over the course of the Music Diary Project are is Smashing Pumpkins’ Lull EP, which Drew bought used earlier in the day when I spotted it at record den. The night is warm — in the high seventies or low eighties — and I am wearing shorts for the first time this year. Something about Smashing Pumpkins always reminds me of middle school — I think seventh grade was the year that I really started listening to them and I listened to them passionately for a year or so until I got Really Into something else, like any old seventh grader would. There’s a lot of animosity towards Smashing Pumpkins these days, but listening to their early recordings always reminds me that once they were a small band making music that sounded big and beautiful beyond any right it might have had to do so.