Friday, February 29, 2008

Jess's Top 20 Favorite Songs: Also known as Jess is a Sad Fuck

I'd like to preface this entry by saying we understand it is entirely self-indulgent and cliched and probably not even that interesting to you guys. But fuck it, we're doing it anyway, even though I fully admit I know very little about "cool" music. Also, obviously this list is superfluous and changes practically daily, but I'm going off my instincts. So as of right now, without looking at my iTunes, these are my Top 20 Favorite Songs:

20. Rilo Kiley - Does He Love You?
One of my favorite memories of high school is driving down Kelly Drive towards the city with my friend Ilyssa blasting this song and singing at the top of our lungs. Listen particularly carefully for the climax when Jenny screams, "But he's distant and you found him/ On the phone screaming 'baby I love you'/ And I'll leave her and I'm coming out to California."

19. Band of Horses - The Funeral

I've loved this song for awhile now but it's been kind of ruined by its usage in a Toyota commercial, which bumped it back several spots. It's a shame, because this song is fucking great, but now whenever I listen to it I think of shiny happy people in shiny happy cars.

18. Elliott Smith - Between the Bars Elliott Smith is a go-to of mine when I'm feeling like I want to kill myself (JK!). But really, this song was in The Royal Tenenbaums and if there's one thing you can count on Wes Anderson for, it's having great soundtracks to accompany his mostly almost-great movies.

17. Radiohead - Thinking About You
When I came home from Berkeley the summer before senior year I played this song on repeat and watched slideshows of the pictures I'd taken. Aka I'm pathetic, but whatevs, this song is special to me. (Aww, lolz)

16. Neutral Milk Hotel - In an Aeroplane Over the Sea

The lyrics to this song make you feel happy to be alive, particularly the refrain, "How strange it is to be anything at all." Metaphysical, AND the melody's catchy. Leave it to NMH.

15. Van Morrison - Sweet Thing

This song makes me cry. I don't want to say anything else about it.

14. Bon Iver - Flume I heard this song for the first time last week and I'm completely in love. If you haven't heard Bon Iver (which, as I so called, is a bastardized form of Bon Hiver, meaning "Good Winter" in French), then I suggest you pick up his record. After a 3 year long bout with mono and a difficult breakup, he retreated into the woods and emerged with this piece of gold. If I had to put my poetry to music, I'd use Bon Iver's sad guitar.

13. Frou Frou - Let Go Nothing so characterizes my sophomore year and flat out obsession with Garden State (no, I'm not ashamed) as this song. The first time I heard it I got chills, and that initial beauty never really waned.

12. LCD Soundsystem - All My Friends

Catchy, upbeat, but with sad-ish lyrics: is there really any other way to describe LCD Soundsystem? Sure, but I'm not going to try.

11. Various Artists - Adagio For Strings

The only classical music piece on my list. Ok, so we played this song in Concert Band in high school and I fell in love. It was the only piece of music I ever truly enjoyed playing. It's kind of ruined by the fact they always use it for World War II battle scenes and overdramatized breakups, but the song encompasses so much emotion that it's difficult to deny how amazing it is. Yay for minor chords!

10. Sufjan Stevens - To Be Alone With You

This song is a perfect combination of grownup romance and wishful teenage angst: afterall, what more do you want when you're a teenager than to be squished up together with someone in a car or at the movies or in your parents' basement?

9. The Decemberists - Red Right Ankle

Acoustic, simple, beautiful. The lyrics make me weepy.

8. Neutral Milk Hotel - Oh Comely
Jeff Mangnum is really one of my favorite lyricists of modern rock groups. And the fact that they centered their record, In an Aeroplane Over the Sea, around the story of Anne Frank is creepy and kitschy and somehow perfect.

7. Broken Social Scene - Anthems for a Seventeen Year Old Girl

This song was my anthem when I was a 17 year old girl. Whispery and echoey and with a climax as intense as, well, a climax, the lyrics fit perfectly into my idea of myself as a teenager. And how many girls put "Park that car, drop that phone, sleep on the floor, dream about me" in their away messages?

6. The Decemberists - On the Bus Mall
The guitars in this song are mind-numbing. Colin Meloy strikes again.

5. Joni Mitchell - All I Want
Junior year of high school my friend Dina and I became literally obsessed with Joni Mitchell's Blue. We would actually skip school just to go home, smoke baby joints, and listen to it. All I Want is maybe my favorite from the album.

4. Radiohead - Pyramid Song

The syncopation of this song is what makes it work so well. The beat actually comes just a split second after you feel it should come. And it has that classic Radiohead synthesizer vibe.

3. The Knife - Heartbeats
This song is so freshman year of college: from pregaming in our tiny dorm, to late nights and copious amounts of drugs at places like Bleach (RIP) and Ruff Club, this song seriously defines an entire chunk of my life.

2. The National - Slow Show

Just listen to the refrain: "You know I dreamed about you for 29 years before I saw you" and tell me you didn't tear up a bit.

1. Sufjan Stevens - Casimir Pulaski Day

My alltime favorite song is acoustic and sad and about someone dying: go figure! It wholly sums up my senior year. I used to play it every night driving home from my ex-boyfriend's house. It is sad and melodramatic and perfect.


1 comment:

Anonymous said...

i love anthem of a seventeen year old girl for the exact same reason.