“Can you hear me out there? Check this one out. This is the big one … bah-bah-Baah … This is the one you’ve ALL been waiting for!” (dweeby Men Without Hats references). “OK Here we go!”
Photo by Aditya Banerjee (BYT)
Our dj set at the DC Record Fair at Black Cat:
Art of Noise – Dragnet – In No Sense? Nonsense! *
Yeasayer – O.N.E. – Odd Blood #
Men Without Hats – Pop Goes the World %
Nancy Sinatra – Lies – Boots ^
Broken Bells – The High Road (
Dark Night of the Soul – Revenge (feat. Wayne Coin) @
Talking Heads – Girlfriend Is Better – Stop Making Sense !
Kraftwerk – Radioactivity $
Sonic Youth – Incinerate – Rather Ripped +
David Bowie – Fame – Changes One =
Trans Am – Tesco v. Sainsbury – What Day Is It Tonight? >
Sparklehorse – Don’t Take My Sunshine Away – Dreamt For Lightyears In The Belly Of a Mountain <
David Byrne & Brian Eno – My Big Nurse – Everything That Happens Will Happen Today
# Great pick. This was Em’s call. She loooooves Yeasayer, and so do I, though I’ll never forgive her for actually “forgetting” to go to a Yeasayer show that she had tickets to. This track is dancey but chill but poppy but hipster but sexy but awesomely nostalgic all at the same time. Does it get any better?
% Grew up with this one. Like candy. Some guy at the fair inquired about this, and when he heard Men Without Hats, he remembered their “Safety Dance” song. He also wished aloud wistfully that we would just put all of these songs on a mix cd already. Yap, he totally said that.
^ Nancy‘s our girl. I love how all her songs are about how some dude wronged her and she’s gonna get back at him. Lies! All Lies! DAMN RIGHT NANCY. This song is catchy as all hell. Sugary girl group background vocals, but her voice is always low and menacing.
( This is one of the newer records we played. When Broken Bells came out, it was sorta like … groan… another collab? For rillz? Danger Mouse … again? but I was knocked flat onto my ass. They sure told me… Danger Mouse and James Mercer did. This first track off of the album is just one of 10 amazing tunes. And I will be seeing them live at 9:30 Club in a few!
@ This record was courtesy of my friend Tom, who managed to get his paws on 1 of only 500 copies of this on vinyl. Once again, this album is an odd collab, this time between Danger Mouse, Sparklehorse & David Lynch. Lynch even sings on some of the tunes, along with celebs like Julian Casablancas, Frank Black, Iggy Pop & Vic Chestnutt. Revenge, the track we picked, has Wayne Coyne crooning on it… exploring the chilling psychological processes of revenge. Check out the cover artwork. Angst. Pain. Hell.
! One of the greatest songs ever by one of the greatest bands in the history of music with one of the best lines ever. “I’ve got a girlfriend with bows in her hair… Nothing is better than that.” We <3 David Byrne. This was a live version from their Stop Making Sense live documentary. Watch the DVD… bizarre and delicious. Major girl crush on bassist Tina Weymouth.
$ Only recently got turned on to Kraftwerk. Took one listen and were sold. It’s like intergalactic sci-fi hypnosis. A shopper even recognized it and later confirmed it with us so he could run back to his friends and do an “I was RIGHT! I told you so.”
+ The problem with Sonic Youth is not just which track to spin, but first which f’in album. Well we didn’t have Daydream Nation nor Experimental Jet Set Trash No Star on vinyl, so we went with the melodic, latter-years “Incinerate” off of Rather Ripped from ’06. Killer tune. “I ripped your heart out from your chest. Replaced it with a grenade blast.”
= The obligatory Bowie. Most of the dj’s seemed to be spinning funk or hip hop, probably punk, so this was our attempt at crossover appeal, thrown in with a lot of glam. This track is sickkk. I now have, not one, but two copies of this record (like a real dj) thanks to my friend David’s spot-on notions of what is an essential record to have in any collection.
>Sorta went through hell trying to find the Trans Am record I wanted. I caught these guys last month at their tour kickoff show… fab. I actually wanted their latest record “Thing,” which shouldn’t have been difficult but no local record store had it… which, like what the fudge, this band is pure homegrown DC. We ended up just picking up a copy of the live album “What Day Is It Tonight?” from Neal at the fair and spinning it. It was a smooth op… and “Tesco vs. Sainsbury” is a killer tune. I might even like the live version better than the studio.
< Moment of silence. Consider this a tribute to the late Mark Linkous. As tragic as his death was this past March, he went out with a bang as far as we’re concerned. This is a beautiful, crackly, charming tune by Sparklehorse. There was also some collaboration with Danger Mouse on this record I think. Thank you Tom once again for a rad vinyl collection.
** Wanted to end the set with Neil Young‘s Helpless, but this one got the job done. This is one of those lovely Sunday afternoon records. I was reeling when I heard it for the first time … it’s so magnificent it makes you drunk with nostalgia and happiness. Their live show was also probably the best I saw in 2009, and ranks among the best I’ve ever seen. Leave it to David Byrne to ensure an immaculate and mesmerizing production – a ragtag army of dancers in white, the choreography was disjointed, puppet-like. Everything was just magical and dream-like, and of course… Byrne at the center of it all.
Em and I basically rushed from the Silver Spring craft fair and sat bitchin’ + spittin’ in 16th Street traffic on our way to Black Cat. It was really pretty comical in retrospect. Since we got there a few minutes past our start time, Em just pulled up in front of the club, and we were like “QUICK!!!” and I bolted in with my crate of records while she found parking. Couldn’t quite “bolt,” though, since it was so heavy, so I just lumbered up up the stairs and arrived at the side of the stage, completely out of breath. It occurred to me, as I internally flipped out, that I hadn’t worked with, let alone looked at, a turntable interface in prolly 8 to 10 years… Thankfully Kevin provided a crash course and I was off and running.
Em finally arrived a little into the second song… never been so happy to see my twin sister haha. She just slapped me on the butt and got to work. Em picked out the next record and organized it on the drum riser behind us, while I set the needle for the next tune. And it did take 4 hands. This 4-hand wizardry must have amused Kevin … called us a couple o’ mad scientists at the table. Oh ok I get it. It’s cuz we’re asian right? Can’t we be “ill” or “sick” or whatnot? We kid J Maybe next time. Thanks to friends who came out to hear us.