Hot Rod Circuit
Sorry About Tomorrow/Vagrant
Part of what is so cool about music is that it evokes place so well. Listen. Go put on a Springsteen or U2 disc: where are you? A stadium, packed shoulder to shoulder in a kind of Leni Riefenstahl collective human mass. Put on Bach's Suites for Solo Cello and suddenly you're in a church.
My weakness is for the kind of music that makes you feel like you're leaning against the cigarette-grimed wall of a small club, a bottle of cold beer in your hand, as you shout to try and talk to the person next to you. There are a lot of subclasses here—you may be dodging chairs thrown from the mosh pit, or listening to synthesizers while watching clips from 50's TV projected on the wall, or actually dancing, as opposed to bobbing up and down in place, to a hard-edged update of Bob Wills—but the sweet spot is a band with 2 guitars, bass, and drums. The singer is a tortured intellectual with a reedy, slightly sharp voice who sings smart-sounding lyrics, and the guitars phase back and forth between a buzz of noise and melody.
So call me a sucker for this style. Put the disc in and go open a Bud. You'll be transported back to every little rock club you've ever been to: feel all the edgy insecurity you felt being there, as well as that adolescent hunger for something more than sex that brought you there in the first place.