289: “Midtown” by Calexico

Doctor 1: Doctor, what is that substance oozing out of the purple-feather chrysalis those groovy aliens left behind? [Doctor 1 stands her surfboard on the wall of the scienced-up set, revealing her microscopic bikini.]

Doctor 2: It’s Pimp Juice, Doctor. [Doctor 2 steps into scene for reveal of surgeon’s-cut bikini. She moves close to Doctor 1. Their eyes lock.]

Doctor 1: What should we do, Doctor? [Pause. Bikinis. Doctor 2 moves away, bikini bottom to audience. She turns dramatically…]

Doctor 2: It’s too late, Doctor. We’ve already been… pimped. [Doctors “jiggulate” as choreographed.]

Fisheye lens gets all the ladies.And so on…

I got lots of this stuff. Problem is the endings are never real good, or the beginnings.

Is this a music blog? I presume so, but I’m not the judge. So as evidence, I submit “Midtown” by Calexico, from Hot Rail (2000). Acclaimed, shuffled, filed, moved, uncovered, dusted, listened, cherished.

The song contains the appropriate juices. Give Calexico a squeeze right now and see what squirts out!


Song: Midtown
Artist: Calexico
Album: Hot Rail
Label: Quarterstick Records
Buy from: Amazon | iTunes
Listen: MOG | Spotify

169: “Dry The Rain” and “Monolith” by The Beta Band

Best. Band. Photo. Ever.The Beta Band was catapulted to a shoulder-height level of fame with the movie High Fidelity (2000), starring John Cusack and Jack Black.  Their song, “Dry The Rain,” was featured on the soundtrack and the band is actually mentioned in the film.

The Beta Band was a British group, and its members now live on in newer incarnations.

Another track from the same compilation album, “Monolith” (in two parts), reminiscent of Pink Floyd, is below “Dry The Rain.”  And hold your incontinence to a minimum, but I’m also throwing in Jack Black’s (partial) cover of Marvin Gaye’s “Let’s Get It On” from High Fidelity.  Classic stuff and a total spoiler if you’ve never seen the movie.

I’d pay money for a whole album of Jack Black covering soul classics… Yeah, and I’m a big fan of the entire Jackass franchise of artistic offerings…. And I often breathe through my mouth when I’m busy not thinking… And I like to eat off-brand beef sticks.  I’m comfortable with all this.

Clear your mind, and enjoy.

Song: Dry The Rain
Artist: The Beta Band
Album: The Three EP’s
Buy from: Amazon | iTunes


132: “Sure Thing” by St. Germain

Ludovic Navarre is St Germain is "Dude!"French musician St Germain takes some old John Lee Hooker riffs and vocals and re-works them to nice effect in this one from 2000.

Unrelated quote:

Wanting to meet an author because you like his work is like wanting to meet a duck because you like paté. -Margaret Atwood, novelist and poet (b. 1939)


Song: Sure Thing
Artist: St. Germain
Album: St Germain Des Pres Tourist
Label: Blue Note Records
Buy from: Amazon

115: “Hey Joe” by Medeski, Martin & Wood

It's so obvious that John Medeski just farted in this picture.I shan’t post songs by the same artist very many times.  These guys deserve a double-post (see original post).

The notion of hearing a jazz piano trio cover Jimi Hendrix has a great deal of potential to initiate your gag reflex.  Medeski, Martin & Wood calls bullcrap on that.  French intended.

First video: a recording from an intimate live performance of “Hey Joe” at Tonic in NYC.  For some reason it has 3 1/2 minutes of dead time at the end.

Second video: a lo-def video recording of “Hey Joe” at a jazz festival from 2001 (thanks, astute readers!!).  Marc Ribot sits in for a smoking solo on this soul-searing rendition of one of Hendrix’s finest.  Mais, oui.

Always improvise.  And enjoy.

Song: Hey Joe
Artist: Medeski, Martin & Wood
Album: Tonic
Label: Blue Note
Buy from: Amazon | iTunes

106: “Lebanese Blonde” by Thievery Corporation

I think it would be hella cool if we used a mirror as part of our band photo.Rather than straining my brain muscles coming up with a description for Thievery Corporation‘s music, here’s what Wikipedia says:

Their music style mixes elements of dub, acid jazz, reggae, Indian classical, Middle Eastern, and Brazilian (such as bossa nova) with a lounge aesthetic.

Well, words are only so good at describing sounds, tastes, and smells.  “Lebanese Blonde” from Mirror Conspiracy (2000) smells… good.

Soak up the non-verbal experience below, and enjoy.

Song: Lebanese Blonde
Artist: Thievery Corporation
Album: Mirror Conspiracy
Label: Eighteenth Street
Buy from: Amazon | iTunes

68: “His Majesty King Raam” by Lemon Jelly

Wait, I think these guys sell mutual funds or something.A comment from the YouTube video:

I play it everyday in my elevator

You should play it in your elevator, too.  It’s called “His Majesty King Raam” because Lemon Jelly is weird… which is all right with me and King Raam.

Song: His Majesty King Raam
Artist: Lemon Jelly
Album: Lemonjelly.ky
Label: XI Recordings
Buy from: Amazon (CD Only)

58: “Emergency” by a random high school band (DJ Shadow collection)


DJ Shadow will steal your beats and return them with butterfly wings.This is a fun compilation from vinyl nerd, musician, producer, and jockey of discs, DJ Shadow.  It’s called Schoolhouse Funk (2000) and it’s comprised entirely of random, vintage, high school performances he’s collected on vinyl.  There are two albums.  One of my favorites is a funk cover of The Beatles’ Uncle Albert/Admiral Halsey.

This one is called “Emergency” by someone named Eddie Evans.  It’s grungy but it’s got some serious energy.  Perfect for a Funky Friday night.


Song: Emergency
Artist: Various Artists (Collection by DJ Shadow)
Album: Schoolhouse Funk
Label: Call-Tex Custom Prod
Buy from: Amazon (CD Only)

50: “Hip Hop Barrio” by Up, Bustle & Out

Modern music.Up, Bustle & Out is two Brits (and friends) who make some interesting music, combining traditional instruments with electronic elements and production.  They’ve got a strong South American flair.

Here’s “Hip Hop Barrio” from 2000’s Rebel Radio Master Sessions, Vol 1.

Song: Hip Hop Barrio
Artist: Up, Bustle & Out
Album: Rebel Radio Master Sessions, Vol 1
Label: Ninja Tunes
Buy from: Amazon | iTunes

3: “Down And To The Left” by Amon Tobin

Amon Tobin Looks Like A Nice Guy.When some people think of electronically generated music, they think of beeps, bloops, and repetitive drum loops.

Amon Tobin is not that kind of musician.  He takes mostly “found” sounds and transforms them into often industrial sounding pieces of music.  The track I present now is a more musical offering from Tobin’s library.  It is not uncommon to find serene beauty or the arching scope of a cinematic score in Tobin’s carefully constructed songs.  He creates thick landscapes of sound and layers tracks like a master craftsman.

“Down and to the Left” is part of a 3-disc compilation by various artists entitled Xen Cuts (2000) from label Ninja Tunes.


Song: Down and to the Left
Artist: Amon Tobin
Album: Xen Cuts
Label: Ninja Tunes
Buy from: Amazon
Listen: MOG