Song of the Day: Everybody Wants To Rule The World (by Tears for Fears)


TearsForFears

I will readily admit that I am a child of the 80’s. I grew up listening to 80’s music whether it was metal (though I didn’t truly listen to them until the 90’s), rap all the way to synthpop and new wave which became quite popular during the decade with groups such as Depeche Mode, INXS, Duran Duran and The Cure. One band which I listened to quite a bit during the mid-80’s was the British new wave band Tears For Fears. It’s from this band that the latest “Song of the Day” comes from: “Everybody Wants To Rule The World”.

The song is actually an 80’s classic that has stood the test of time and musical taste. While many scoff and ridicule most of the pop songs which blew up during the 80’s this particular song from Tears For Fears was never one of them. While the song does have a foundation in the synthpop sound of the time the song itself doesn’t really sound like most of the 80’s pop music. The lyrics are socially aware without being too preachy. In fact, if one was to listen to the song now it’s original message of limitless optimism in the future for everyone actually sounds a bit selfish in today’s social climate.

The song has been covered quite a bit by many singers and bands of different stripes from such groups as The Dresden Dolls, Clare & The Reasons and Dru Hill right up to the pop punk band Care Bares on Fire whose cover was used during the end credits for Season 5, Episode 9 of True Blood. 

Let this song kick-off my 80’s music revival and all of it due to the awesome inclusion of some classic 80’s pop tracks in the equally awesome and great new Netflix series, Stranger Things.

Everybody Wants To Rule The World

Welcome to your life
There’s no turning back
Even while we sleep
We will find you acting on your best behavior
Turn your back on Mother Nature
Everybody wants to rule the world

It’s my own design
It’s my own remorse
Help me to decide
Help me make the most
Of freedom and of pleasure
Nothing ever lasts forever
Everybody wants to rule the world

There’s a room where the light won’t find you
Holding hands while the walls come tumbling down
When they do I’ll be right behind you
So glad we’ve almost made it
So sad they had to fade it
Everybody wants to rule the world

I can’t stand this indecision
Married with a lack of vision
Everybody wants to rule the world
Say that you’ll never never never never need it
One headline why believe it?
Everybody wants to rule the world

All for freedom and for pleasure
Nothing ever lasts forever
Everybody wants to rule the world

Song of the Day: Big Empty (by Stone Temple Pilots)


720x405-Scott2

Tonight the music world found out that Stone Temple Pilots and Velvet Revolver frontman Scott Weiland passed away at the age of 48 while on tour in Minnesota.

The years after graduating from high school was a chaotic time for me. not knowing what role I had for myself moving forward and afraid of the world beyond the regimented, secured, but understood confines of high school. While I enjoyed the freedom of being a young adult after graduating in the summer of 1991 the reality of it all was that I wasn’t that far removed from still being a teenager a couple years later.

I call these my adrift years.

From this time in my life I was drawn to the music that every young adult trying to leave his teen years behind. Whether it was hip-hop, metal and, the genre of the era, grunge, I was listening to it. While I wasn’t as huge a fan of grunge as the rest of my contemporaries of the time I did gravitate to a couple of the titans of the genre: Soundgarden and Stone Temple Pilots.

It was with Stone Temple Pilots that I was introduced to one of my favorite frontman of my Adrift Years: Scott Weiland.

Weiland encompassed not just the brooding, alienation that made grunge such a popular genre of music during the 1990’s but also had a touch of the wild and dangerous aspect of what made rock frontmen so-called Rock Gods. He was the Axel Rose of grunge. An enormously talented vocalist, but one who was also scandal-bound with his off-stage drug use and self-destructive behavior.

Scott Weiland helped make those years adrift during the early 1990’s with his singing. It’s a shame and a loss to the music world that like other rock legends before him his early years battling his inner demons would take him away too soon.

Nothing epitomizes who Scott Weiland was to me better than the song “Big Empty” which was the first single off of their second album Purple.

Big Empty

drivin’ faster in my car
falling farther from just what we are
smoke a cigarette and lie some more
these conversations kill
falling faster in my car

time to take her home
her dizzy head is conscience laden
time to take a ride
it leaves today no conversation
time to take her home
her dizzy head is conscience laden
time to wait too long
to wait too long
these conversations kill

to much walkin’, shoes worn thin
too much trippin’ and my soul’s worn thin
time to catch a ride
it leaves today, her name is what it means
to much walkin’, shoe’s worn thin

AMV of the Day: Breaking (Various)


BreakingAMV

It’s been awhile since we’ve had a new AMV of the Day. With con season in full gear it’s been tough waiting to see what new AMV’s come out of these conventions. The problem with finding new and interesting anime music videos, especially in the United States, has been the tendency of the same videos winning awards at North American conventions. Name recognition has become the norm when voting which videos make the grade and, in the end, win the prize in their chosen category.

Not saying that these videos and their creators don’t deserve the recognition and accolades for their work, but it does make finding new fresh voices and visual styles in the field harder and harder to discover. Foreign videos tend to be the last realm for people who are into AMVs to find rare gems in the rough.

This latest AMV of the Day is “Breaking” and by the creator Pat [AMVCON-2015] and meshes together some of the more popular and action-oriented shonen (and some shoujo) anime to the tune of Linkin Park’s “Breaking the Habit.”

Anime: Amagi Brilliant Park, Bleach Movie: Hell Verse, Btoom!, Ga-Rei Zero, Kokoro Connect, Kyoukai no Kanata, Madoka Magica: Rebellion, Naruto: Road to Ninja, Nerawareta Gakuen, One Piece: The Movie 70, Persona 3: Spring of Birth, Ookami Shoujo to Kuro Ouji, Sword Art Online 1 and 2, Steins;Gate: Fuka Ryōiki no Déjà vu, Suzumiya Haruhi no Shōshitsu, To Aru Agaku Railgun S

Song: “Breaking the Habit” by Linkin Park

Creator: Pat [AMVCON-2015]

Past AMVs of the Day

Ten Years #24: Radiohead


Decade of last.fm scrobbling countdown:
24. Radiohead (1,176 plays)
Top track (35 plays): Knives Out, from Amnesiac (2001)

It should come as no surprise that Radiohead made it onto my decade top 50 chart somewhere. The dominant album on that list might be a little less common: Amnesiac (2001) took the title with a modest margin over Hail to the Thief (2003) and OK Computer (1997). This is no accident–no single weekend of Winamp stuck on repeat. Since pretty much the week it was released, Amnesiac has been my favorite Radiohead album.

It would be a bit silly to argue that Amnesiac is their best. Just as Radiohead are too unique to really be compared to any other band, pretty much every album they’ve released since The Bends (1995) has resided in a world of its own. OK Computer certainly offers the broadest appeal, and Kid A (2000) seems to get the most praise from the more eclectic, aesthetically minded fans, but it’s the consistent vibe of Amnesiac that grabs me most. From start to finish, it glides on a sea of glass beneath an inebriated night sky. While the individual tracks are stellar at every turn, the sum of its parts come nowhere near the whole, and I can rarely bring myself to listen to them out of their intended order. There’s some calming chill that sets across the whole 45 minutes, and a spirit of motion that I did not experience again until “Bloom” (The King of Limbs, 2011).

That being said, of course OK Computer and Hail to the Thief are unrivaled masterpieces, of course In Rainbows (2007) and The King of Limbs are worlds above the average for a band late in their career, and of course The Bends redefined the limits of rock in its day. The only album in their discography that you might justifiably find some fault with is Pablo Honey (1993), and that’s only when you measure it by the standard Radiohead set and maintained for the two decades to follow. In the most general sense, weighing all factors evenly, they might rightly be regarded as the greatest band to ever exist. That’s not lofty praise; it’s an opinion that a good many experienced music critics are prepared to agree with. But to the question of how Radiohead became my 24th most listened to band of the past 10 years, and not say, my 50th, I point without hesitation to Amnesiac.

Song of the Day: Dreaming Wide Awake (by Poets of the Fall)


Dreaming Wide Awake

The latest “Song of the Day” comes from the Finnish rock band Poets of the Fall.

“Dreaming Wide Awake” is such a cinematic-sounding song. From the vivid imagery brought up by the songs lyrics to the band’s frontman Marko Saaresto’s singing full of emotional power. I was first introduced to this song when I came across one of my favorite anime music videos almost three years ago now in Chiikaboom’s “Against All Odds”.

The song is about one’s inability to cope and move past the loss of a loved one. How one tragedy could compound another as one loses their grip on reality in an attempt to try and return their dead loved one to them. While this is an extreme version of such an experience I’m sure everyone has felt a similar feeling when one has gone through a very emotional break-up with someone they care about for a very long time.

For a song that sounds wistful and somewhat full of hope in reality this song is actually quite dark.

Dreaming Wide Awake

Too late, the melody is over
The joke seems to be on me cos I’m the one not laughing
Down here on the floor

Deflate, the mystery of living
In the most heartless fashion I could ever Imagine
No pretense of decor

Another place and time, without a great divide
And we could be flying deadly high
I’ll sell my soul to dream you wide awake

Another place and time, without a warning sign
And we could be dying angel style
I’ll sell my soul to dream you wide awake

I’ll dream you… wide awake

With me, disaster finds a playfield
Love seems to draw dark, twisted pleasure tearing at me
Cos I can’t let you go

Mercy, like water in a desert
Shine through my memory like jewelry in the sun
Where are you now

Another place and time, without a great divide
And we could be flying deadly high
I’ll sell my soul to dream you wide awake

Another place and time, without a warning sign
And we could be dying angel style
I’ll sell my soul to dream you wide awake

I’ll dream you… wide awake

It’s like I’m racing to the sun, blindly face the blazing gun
Cos I’m afraid I will be left here without you
Like I’m racing not to run, give more when I have none
Cos I’m afraid I will be left here without you… wide awake

Another place and time, without a great divide
And we could be flying deadly high
I’ll sell my soul to dream you wide awake

Another place and time, without a warning sign
And we could be dying angel style
I’ll sell my soul to dream you wide awake

I’ll dream you… wide awake.

Song of the Day: Radioactive (by Imagine Dragons)


imagine-dragons-radioactive

Tonight’s episode of True Blood shares not just the title with Imagine Dragons’ popular track of the same name, but also used it to score their end credits for the season finale.

So, it’s no surprise that it’s the choice for the latest “Song of the Day”. This is not the first time the site has chosen something that uses this song. A recent “AMV of the Day” used this song to great effect. The video was “Radioakshun” and it matched the song’s lyrics which speaks of an apocalypse that has come and gone leaving a wasteland for people to sift through. This time around the song goes well with the time skip second-half of tonight’s True Blood season finale. No, there wasn’t an apocalypse that destroyed Bon Temps and killed everyone, but it showed that a sort of vampire apocalypse was on its way to Bon Temps and hints at what could be an epic seventh season for the show which started and ended a strong sixth season.

I’m going to take a flying leap and say that Imagine Dragons will be gaining quite a bit of new fans after tonight.

Radioactive

I’m waking up to ash and dust
I wipe my brow and I sweat my rust
I’m breathing in the chemicals
I’m breaking in, shaping up, checking out on the prison bus
This is it, the apocalypse
Whoa

I’m waking up, I feel it in my bones
Enough to make my system blow
Welcome to the new age, to the new age
Welcome to the new age, to the new age
Whoa, whoa, I’m radioactive, radioactive
Whoa, whoa, I’m radioactive, radioactive

I raise my flags, don my clothes
It’s a revolution, I suppose
We’ll paint it red to fit right in
Whoa
I’m breaking in, shaping up, checking out on the prison bus
This is it, the apocalypse
Whoa

I’m waking up, I feel it in my bones
Enough to make my system blow
Welcome to the new age, to the new age
Welcome to the new age, to the new age
Whoa, whoa, I’m radioactive, radioactive
Whoa, whoa, I’m radioactive, radioactive

All systems go, sun hasn’t died
Deep in my bones, straight from inside

I’m waking up, I feel it in my bones
Enough to make my system blow
Welcome to the new age, to the new age
Welcome to the new age, to the new age
Whoa, whoa, I’m radioactive, radioactive
Whoa, whoa, I’m radioactive, radioactive

Ten Years #41: Our Lady Peace


Decade of last.fm scrobbling countdown:
41. Our Lady Peace (765 plays)
Top track (30 plays): Angels Losing Sleep, from Healthy in Paranoid Times (2005)

We are all entitled to a guilty pleasure or two. I would humor calling Our Lady Peace mine, but only if we agree to restrict their cause for lameness to the lyrics. Their popularity, especially as those “Canadian softies” emerging amidst much heavier U.S. trends, overshadows the fact that they are absolutely amazing. Raine Maida’s voice is capable of making anything sound great, and capable of making me not give a shit about singing a falsetto at the top of my lungs at traffic lights with my windows down. Even as I was signing the final divorce papers with my radio in the late 90s and letting my affair with Napster and heavy metal be known, I was probably listening to 1999’s Happiness…is Not a Fish That You Can Catch more than any other album on the market. I’ve definitely listened to it more than most other 1990s albums–even the grunge greats–in my more informed years to follow.

How people have experienced OLP over the years probably varies drastically depending on where you’re from. The late 1990s and early 2000s marked the final days of musical segregation, with Americans barely having a clue who Radiohead, Blur, and Muse were. (Didn’t one of them do that “woo-hoo” song?) The U.S. and Canada were a bit more in sync, but Our Lady Peace was definitely not the overhyped megaband down here that my Canadian friends recall. They were just “that band that did Clumsy and Superman’s Dead”. The singles on Happiness received minimal air time, and the only song since that I’ve really heard extensively here was “Somewhere Out There” (Gravity, 2002). (I can’t honestly speak for their last three albums of course. Maybe “Angels Losing Sleep” was huge–it deserves to be–but I hadn’t listened to mainstream radio in years by then.) My main point here is that, while OLP might have been played to the point of annoyance in Canada, down here they were presented modestly enough to not face serious media pollution. I had a better opportunity to engage them by choice–and choose which songs I liked best.

Our Lady Peace are a band that has definitely catered to the radio single. Even on their first album, Naveed (1994), a few tracks stood out as decisively more catchy than the status quo. Their albums by and large are never perfect; there are plenty of second-rate tracks in their discography. What they have really accomplished throughout their career is a consistency of top-notch quality among the handful of main focus tracks they produce for a given album. They are a band better set to a playlist, and even as recently as Burn Burn in 2009 they’ve pumped out new material worthy of that mix. (“Signs of Life”, “Paper Moon”–featured above) Happiness…is Not a Fish That You Can Catch remains, I think, their best album by far, because it is the only one for which I can safely say there are no downer tracks. Every song on that album could be a single. But I really do enjoy the full discography, and I have a tendency to queue it up from start to finish when I’ve got a long project to work on at home. Something about the more ho-hum tracks projects a sort of humility on the big picture–the sense that these guys are down to earth, not supernaturally brilliant in the sense of contemporaries like Smashing Pumpkins and Pearl Jam. Their lyrics are frequently incredibly lame, but that’s the only major fault I hear in a band that was perhaps a bit too successful to be appreciated for their real worth.

Our Lady Peace: a guilty pleasure? Maybe, but I’ll keep singing along.

Song of the Day: Everybody Wants To Rule The World (by Tears For Fears)


I will readily admit that I am a child of the 80’s. I grew up listening to 80’s music whether it was metal (though I didn’t truly listen to them until the 90’s), rap all the way to synthpop and new wave which became quite popular during the decade with groups such as Depeche Mode, INXS, Duran Duran and The Cure. One band which I listened to quite a bit during the mid-80’s was the British new wave band Tears For Fears. It’s from this band that the latest “Song of the Day” comes from: “Everybody Wants To Rule The World”.

The song is actually an 80’s classic that has stood the test of time and musical taste. While many scoff and ridicule most of the pop songs which blew up during the 80’s this particular song from Tears For Fears was never one of them. While the song does have a foundation in the synthpop sound of the time the song itself doesn’t really sound like most of the 80’s pop music. The lyrics are socially aware without being too preachy. In fact, if one was to listen to the song now it’s original message of limitless optimism in the future for everyone actually sounds a bit selfish in today’s social climate.

The song has been covered quite a bit by many singers and bands of different stripes from such groups as The Dresden Dolls, Clare & The Reasons and Dru Hill right up to the pop punk band Care Bares on Fire whose cover was used during the end credits for Season 5, Episode 9 of True Blood which used the song’s title as the episode title. I’m not a huge fan of that particular cover which made me decide to choose the original version as the latest “Song of the Day” to point out that the original may be old, but it will always be the best.

Everybody Wants To Rule The World

Welcome to your life
There’s no turning back
Even while we sleep
We will find you acting on your best behavior
Turn your back on Mother Nature
Everybody wants to rule the world

It’s my own design
It’s my own remorse
Help me to decide
Help me make the most
Of freedom and of pleasure
Nothing ever lasts forever
Everybody wants to rule the world

There’s a room where the light won’t find you
Holding hands while the walls come tumbling down
When they do I’ll be right behind you
So glad we’ve almost made it
So sad they had to fade it
Everybody wants to rule the world

I can’t stand this indecision
Married with a lack of vision
Everybody wants to rule the world
Say that you’ll never never never never need it
One headline why believe it?
Everybody wants to rule the world

All for freedom and for pleasure
Nothing ever lasts forever
Everybody wants to rule the world