Random Rules with OdESSA


This article was originally published in online magazine Pointless Banter on November 6, 2006.

For those of you unfamiliar with Random Rules, it’s a feature that I stole the idea for from The Onion. It’s where you get an artist to set their mp3 players on “random” and comment on the first ten tracks to come up, without skipping any. Today’s RR features OdESSA, and it’s the “band” iPod – that is, they’ve all loaded it with their favorite music. Strangely, it listens a lot like my own iPod – lots of alternative and ancient jazz, but mine has more punk rock. PUBA is narrating.

OdESSA: Our iPod is 60 gigs, which means there are some very, very dark corners. I think that on the start of a blind date, you should just order the first drinks and exchange iPods. After five minutes of sniffing through each others’ iPod, you’ll both know if the potential relationship has a fighting chance. Anyway, this iPod is the one we use for touring, so everyone in the band has put albums on it. So EVERYONE is responsible. I’m nervous because I think somebody put some Phil Collins on it. I hate Phil Collins so much that I’m grinding my teeth and sweating like a cheese left in the sun. Once when I was a teenager I was getting intimate with a beautiful woman when Phil Collins came on the radio. I haven’t been able to sustain any form of sexual relationship since. DAMN YOU AND YOUR GATED REVERB!!!! No wonder Patrick Bateman was insane. Okay, this is radio OdESSA!

1. “Human Nature” – Michael Jackson. What more do I have to say? MJ is bad arse to the max.

2. “Give Myself To Rose” – Johnny Cash (Live At Folsom Prison.) When I was a kid, my dad loved country, especially Johnny Cash, so naturally I fucking hated it. We’d go on these soccer trips (I had the awful stigma of being the coach’s son) and dad would play Johnny Cash and Roy Orbison and I’d be so embarrassed. After all J.C. was no M.C. Hammer or Young M.C. I’d complain all the time, which also made my dad play it even more. Then one day when I was 21, I discovered Mr. Cash. I love it because not only is it amazing music, but it’s got childhood nostalgia and was a key point for building my adult relationship with my dear old dad. Now I have more Cash albums than him and only wear black. What more can I say? (Although I inherited his love for country, I never inherited his love for country and western.)

3. “A Man Needs a Maid” – Neil Young. I guess I also answered this one above. A friend of mine who is a very fine guitar player introduced me to Neil Young when I was 16, and I guess we found Neil through Pearl Jam in the 90’s when they covered “Rocking in the Free World” and did the whole Mirrorball thing.

4. “Disarm” – Smashing pumpkins. I was a teen in the 90’s and grunge was my world. Pumpkins rule and my favorite Pumpkins album is Mellon Collie. I never saw them live though.

5. “Pretty Noose” – Soundgarden. Exactly the same answer as above. This album (Down on the Upside) is my favorite. I also never got to see them live.

6. “Grandpa’s Spells” – Jelly Roll Morton and His Red Hot Peppers. I love most pre-1970’s jazz and love Mingus which led me to Jelly Roll Morton. I really fucking love this.

7. “Man I Love” – Miles Davis And The Modern Jazz Giants. This isn’t my favorite Miles period but it’s still good. the 60’s band with Tony Williams, Ron Carter etc. is and my favorite Miles album is the 1964 complete concert (Four or More/My Funny Valentine) At half time Miles told the band they weren’t getting paid as it was a charity concert. The result is amazing. The band has so much spit, venom and fire in the music. Tony is all over Miles; it’s kinda like he’s musically beating him up. It’s so amazing.

(Pumpkins and Jelly Roll came up again so I skipped – is that allowed?)

8. “Abnegating Cecity” – Meshuggah. Phew! Finally some metal. I was worried that all these soft songs my iPod was throwing out was starting to portray me as a fag. Close shave. High fives all round!

9. “Morning Bell” – Radiohead. I like Radiohead and I like Kid A. Once I was working night fill and I opened (Note from E: rest of response cut off in email.)

10. “I Need Somebody” – Iggy & The Stooges. Pender introduced me to Iggy as we were playing a festival that he was headlining. It got me hook, line, and sinker. Raw Power and Fun House are in the favorite album pile. Then I got to see him live with The Stooges. I learned a few lessons during that show. Nobody owns the stage like Iggy. Nobody. Okay, that’s it. I think I got off pretty lightly there. It was weird how it threw up two country tunes, then two grunge, then two jazz tunes. Also note the nice segue between country and grunge courtesy of Neil Young.

Don’t forget to check out part one of today’s Live At E’s double feature – An Interview With OdESSA.

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