My iPod #531: Green Day – Hitchin’ a Ride

Green Day’s 1997 album Nimrod exhibited a change in the band’s musical direction. Differing vastly from the angst and rough punk rock sounds delivered two years prior on Insomniac, Billie Joe, Mike and TrĂ© decided to branch out from their origins and make an album where they weren’t confined to one type of sound. This new sense of freedom resulted in a total of thirty songs being recorded before they were whittled down to create one of Green Day’s most eclectic record to date.

“Hitchin’ a Ride” was the first single to be released from Nimrod. Whilst not explicitly showing the experimentation that was to come in the album, one could tell that there was something different about the band. It is much different from the first single used to promote the previous album. A mysterious violin opens the song, before its chugging four note riff takes over. Remaining relatively calm for the majority of the beginning, bar the instrumental break where the riff is played with more venom, things don’t get very rowdy until halfway through. The chorus finally arrives for the first time and all hell breaks loose shortly after Armstrong yells “SHIT” from the pit of his stomach.

“Hitchin’ a Ride” manages to symbolise the change in style Green Day were going through at the time whilst also giving off the vibe that this was the same Green Day who had released “Basket Case” a few years earlier. It was a wise decision to use it as the first song to represent their new material. People would at least be a bit more prepared for what was to come.

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My iPod #390: Nick Drake – Free Ride

“Pink Moon”, man. One of my favourite albums ever. Eleven songs of one man and an acoustic guitar (and a short piano overdub) producing the most moving, chilling, melodic, bare, but brilliant songs you could ever hear. Sad to know that it was his last before he passed away two years after making it. But honestly, I never knew an album made so simply could be so emotional.

“Free Ride”, to me anyway, seems like one of the most happier songs on the album. Only because of the way it’s played. There’s like a continuous C-note drone that Drake plucks on the lower strings throughout the verses which drives the song forward whilst he plays the more detailed melody on the higher ones. It’s hard to describe; there’s just something a sense of confidence in the song’s tone that I get every time I hear it, and compared to the rest of “Pink Moon” is a lot more perky in its delivery.

I’ve read somewhere say that it’s about having sexual relations with a friend; another place saying it’s Drake trying to reach out to the people that he doesn’t really get on with it, but still wanting their support and attention. I am not that bothered. I think the song itself is too good to really ponder over.

Listen to “Pink Moon”.

My iPod #57: System of a Down – B.Y.O.B.

Nannaannananannnananananananaannanaanannnanananna YOU!

That was meant to be the introduction to the song, by the way.

Hi everyone! I’m in a good mood. I am now a free man, exams are finished, nothing’s gonna change my clothes until results day. Until then, I should probably get started with this again. It is time… for the B SERIES. YES! YES! COME ON!

So System of a Down…. what can I say?

In 2005 it had been three years since the band released their third album. I didn’t follow the band so much, so I had no idea that this album was even out. However, “Chop Suey!” and “Toxicity” were two songs of the band that I saw on MTV2 and, although the former’s video was quite weird and I was quite confused by the actual song, the band really rocked and I guess I wanted to hear more from them.

“B.Y.O.B.”, acronym for ‘Bring Your Own Bombs’, was released as the first single from Mezmerize, the first half of a double album that would be out by the end of the year. It is considered to be yet another of System of a Down’s trademark songs due its fast pace, contrasts between quiet and loud in the verses and chorus, and lines that you are able to shout out at the top of your lungs.

This was also their first single where Daron Malakian had lead vocals in the part of the song. I remember seeing the video when it first came out, and again I was confused at how the song randomly changed in the middle. They were singing about “having a real good time” and “going to the party” and then it was “BLAST OFF IT’S PARTY TIME, WHERE THE FUCK ARE YOU!!!!!!”. It was crazy. But it makes it that much awesome.

This is another song out of the hundreds in the world that are anti-war. I think this song depicts the message quite clearly. It is about how the government chat shite most the time and how much they suck. George Bush had been re-elected as president the year before, which I guess no one understood back then. So people were pissed. I’m thinking Serj and Daron pretty much felt the same way.

Why do they always send the poor? Why? WHY.

That was alright. It’s good to be back.

Until next time.

Jamie.

P.S. I WAS LOOKING THROUGH MY POSTS YESTERDAY AND I REALISED I MISSED TWO BLOODY SONGS IN MY ‘A’ SERIES.

How did I do that? Yeezus. I might as well do them pretty quickly, and without focus.

George Harrison – Apple Scruffs

That is not the album version, but it’s pretty close.

Another song from ‘All Things Must Pass’. Not much to say about the song. I listened to the album back in 2011, and this song was one that caught my ear. Great harmonies in the chorus by Harrison, and a delightful tribute to the ‘Scruffs’ who would hang outside Abbey Road when The Beatles were there.

Very nice.

Nine Black Alps – Along for the Ride

OK, Nine Black Alps are one of my favourite bands ever.

They released their newest album “Sirens” last October, which you can listen to here.

“Locked Out from the Inside”, the album this song is on, was released in 2009 after the second album “Love/Hate”. I was dissappointed by the second album, because their first album was so good. So good. It’s one of my favourites. “Love/Hate” was just so mellow, and indie and using acoustic guitars. It was such a bore compared to “Everything Is”.

“Locked Out from the Inside” for me was a return to form. Their crunchy, rough Nirvana-esque sound was back, no acoustic guitars in sight. It just felt like everything was back to normal.

“Along for the Ride” is the penultimate song from the album. I think it’s about wanting a relationship, or being interested in someone. I don’t know, I don’t really look deep into lyrics. Even though I typed the lyrics up for every song and got them up on the Internet.

If you don’t know Nine Black Alps, listen to their stuff. Please.

Jamie, again.