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The List of the Moment: Volume One, 2009

What kind of sick, warped mind could possibly even think of putting The Stereophonics and Abba on the same playlist? That’s just sick. Don’t even start on the parallels loosely drawn to Dylan (how that gone in there we don’t know but it did. It always does). Well, by way of some explanation all I can say is that I make no apology for that is what defines The List of the Moment.

The List is what strikes us at any given time – ranging all the way from Bongwater to Henry Rollins to Muddy Waters to Odetta to Marvin Gaye to Renata Tebaldi to Louis Vierne and Satie. The List is the soundtrack of the now, which means it is whatever is going through my mind at the moment I write it, which could be this moment now or it could be yesterday if I broke. It depends. Like me, it is mercurial. As such, it is not fixed – or it is fixed in that you can count on its being predictive in that it will always change, it will always evolve and it is going somewhere. The List is a series of journeys and you can come along for the ride, or, if you don’t like here – change the station.

"A Thousand Trees" by The Stereophonics – I forgot how much I liked this song. How much I like the story that it tells and how it flows so easily from one thing to another.  It leads quite naturally lyrically to the, “It only takes one match to burn a thousand trees…” He makes his point, leading us there with some seeming logic and whether it’s logical or not, we seem to follow this quick synapse. The acoustic play and roll of the song help move us along, nodding our heads in agreement. I can swing either way with The Stereophonics because I feel at times they are over-produced and I don’t like that sound, but this, this is doesn’t have that sound.  Inherent in the lyrics are some great ideas and I like it because it’s clever and language is my every day currency. So for this reason, "A Thousand Trees" makes the List of The Moment this round.

"Don’t Get Me Wrong" by The Pretenders – If ever there was a song about being awkwardly in love and the need to explain why it is you flop all over yourself and become a total idiot in this behavior, "Don’t Get Me Wrong" nails it. “If I am acting so distracted – I’m thinking about the fireworks that go off when you smile,” is but one great line, because I think we’ve all been on both sides of this coin. I certainly know I’ve been the insecure one with the other, whom I was sure didn’t love me back (so I got him wrong) because he seemed, yes, distracted. I didn't know it was about what Chrissie tells us. Really. And I know with certainty that “I come and go like fashion…” likely because of my insecurities and so forth. You have to love this, “It might just be fantastic – Don’t get me wrong.” What a way to end a song.

I cannot think of any better way of explaining the ridiculous ways we behave when we are in love, because we are ridiculous. Love itself is ridiculous when you trhink about it, and as such, I think that as a society we afford the newly in-love a bit more slack because we know how silly and absurd love is. It makes fools of us all and in all ways.

"Sheela Na Gig" by P.J. Harvey (Acoustic Only) – I have to say, I really do not like and cannot therefore recommend the electric version of this song, which I just find too hard. Although the lyrics remain the lyrics and are just terrific in their cheekiness. (I’ll print them below because if you don’t know them, they are whimsical, cheeky, funny, and read almost like a schoolyard rhyme.) Sheela Na Gig does have a sort of schoolyard charm to it. It has the “I ran up to you in the playground and kissed you” thing going on, or “I’ll show you mine if you show me yours”. It’s funny. Again, I think it really only works in the acoustic, perhaps because that lends it more of a schoolyard feel and the electric makes it too grown up for the what the song is lyrically, in my view. It is harder to find the acoustic version, but not impossible.

About Sadi Ranson-Polizzotti