I’ll be the madness that carries you away, I’ll be the sadness to light your darkest day. I’ll be the desert island, where you can be free, I’ll be the vulture that you can catch and eat. And the sky was made of amethyst, and all the stars looked just like little fish. You should learn when to go. You should learn how to say no. And then some mumbly “M” words, and then They Get, what they want, and they never want it again. Go on take everything, take everything I want you to. In the morning, feeling half-right, it was more than just one day I’d feel alright. Today is flat beneath the weight of next day next day next day next day. Silence Kit, somethin’ somethin’ somethin’ in the tune of that Buddy Holly song, every time I sing this in my head it just becomes “Range Life” anyway. That Sonic Youth album came out in 1994. The first line is probably something like aRlekgjk, pfffffsdfaoigujotooom. I really wouldn’t know. My name is Jonas, I’m carrying the wheel, thanks for all you’ve shown us but this is how we feel. Come sit next to me, pour yourself some tea, just like Gramma made when we couldn’t find sleep. In the time of chimpanzees, I was a monkey—butane in my veins & I’m out to cut the junkie with the plastic eyeballs, you get the idea. I declare I don’t care no more, I’m burning up and out and growing bored in my smoked out boring room. My head is shaking in my eyes*, dragging my feet to hit the streets tonight, drive along these shittown lights.
*This is not what he is actually saying. But to my 6-to-13-year-old-ears it was, so it counts.
This going to be my new performance art piece, I am going to have people throw a year from the 1990s at me and I’m going to try to continuously recite first lines from albums that came out that year. I gotta work on my speed and flow. If I practice, is that cheating? Because I would say my entire life up to this point has been practicing for this anyway, so. If I can’t handle it, I can probably just recite the entirety of like, hours’ worth of nineties alt hits from any given year. Throw it at me, bitches.
That’s not very many, but really most of the albums you think came out in ‘94 were ‘93, like In Utero, and August and Everything After, and Everybody Else is Doing it, So Why Can’t We and I think Pablo Honey. Basically, you know, those all had the singles of 1994, but technically they were ‘93 albums. I mean, if I were talking about singles, you know. “My Iron Lung” (whose first line, as far as I’m concerned will always be that Greenwood dun na naa with W’s though) and “Dreams” and “Round Here.” You can check me on that, fuckers. “Mr. Jones” was a single in ‘93, “Round Here” was a single in ‘94 along with “Rain King.” I promise. And maybeee, I don’t really wanna knowwww, how your garden growssss, ‘cause I just wanna FLLY. That album came out in ‘94, but I have no clue what its first song is. Fuck that.
I didn’t cheat, except to verify afterward that I had the right year and the right first track, and, obvs. I actually don’t even know to which Sonic Youth album I referring though, but I’m pretty sure I’m right. And I sat here fumbling with the tune of “Desert Island” in my head for like fifteen minutes before I could come up with the first lines, and then I wasn’t even sure anymore if it came out in ‘94 or ‘95.
I can’t decide if my next work will feature 1993, 1995, 1997, or 1996. These are my top five favorite years ever for albums, pretty much in that order. I might do ‘95 just because I know the most albums from it, but then with ‘93 I can go HAVE YOU GOT A MINUTE, can you fit me into it? and STEP OUT THE FRONT DOOR LIKE A GHOST INTO THE FOG WHERE NO ONE NOTICES THE CONTRAST OF WHITE ON WHITE. Both of them, MOTHERFUCKER.
Speaking of 1994, did you know that Phil Ek produced There’s Nothing Wrong With Love and then spent the rest of his life working on albums like Chutes Too Narrow and with Band of Horses and Fleet Foxes and the Dodos and stuff? I’m wondering if he had a seizure or something and lost part of his brain and now can only handle/is only moved by shitty 2000s complaint rock. Sort of like that angsty beard kid that was on Work of Art, how he got in a car accident and suddenly his brain was really Metal. Except, you know, the opposite.