Let me begin by saying, “Happy birthday!” to my beautiful bride. We have been together since going to see Ghostbusters the summer we met. We have had our ups and downs like most couples. But, we have been on a life ride that I would not have traded for anything. Happy birthday baby!
Before I met my wife, she only listened to pop/rock radio. And, guess what?!?! She continues to listen to pop/rock radio, and mainly rolls her eyes at some of the stuff I think is great. Once person described me as a hot air balloon and my wife as the anchor that keeps me floating off, which is fairly accurate. And, although she is not as big of a music fan as I am, she has been my biggest influence on me becoming a blogger. Currently, she is gently prodding me to write a book or screenplay, which seems like a daunting task for this left-brained microbiologist/chemist/hematology technologist/medical technologist. So, we will see, because the thing has been a VERY slow process.
With that said, how ’bout we get back on track with the next five songs in the countdown of what is turning into a history of alternative music series of countdowns. Today, I present to you #11-15 in the countdown of My 200 Favorite ’80s College Rock Songs. Let’s go!
15. Pixies – “Here Comes Your Man” (1989). The Pixies gave Kurt Cobain the idea of the alternating soft-loud-soft concept of verse-chorus-verse. This song is a nice little Power Pop dish that clearly displays guitarist/vocalist Black Francis’ pop melody songwriting ability without the Pixies’ usual blasts of fuzzed-out guitar.
14. New Order – “Bizarre Love Triangle” (1986). Yes, the lyrics are a bit “bizarre”, but the music is clearly meant for the dance floor in a manner that only the synth-pop dance sound of New Order could create.
13. Depeche Mode – “People Are People” (1985). Finally, Depeche Mode discovered their post-Alan Clarke sound by turning the contrast in their music and lyrics toward the darker side of things. By doing so, their synth-pop sound became more rock-like.
12. The Smiths – “Girlfriend in a Coma” (1987). The opening lyrics of this song directly showed what a sly sense of humor songwriter Morrissey had: “Girlfriend’s in a coma, I guess it’s getting serious.” Ya think!?!? HAHAHA!!! I was hooked by the dark humor of the lyrics set to the usual proto-Britpop sound The Smiths had become known for.
11. The Cure – “Lovesong” (1989). Who knew that the biggest mopey band in the world could possibly ever write a sexy love song? This song was so good that it peaked at #2 on Billboard’s Hot 100 in 1989. FYI: the album on which this song can be found is The Cure’s masterpiece Disintegration.
Well, we are now on the cusp of the Top Ten of this current countdown. Please allow me a moment to thank my favorite radio man in Indianapolis, the incomparable Drew Carey, for the idea of digging into the history of alternative music. It was a fantastic idea that will be reaping weeks of blog space. So, if you do not like what I am doing now and in the short-term on this blog, you can thank my friend Drew. Here’s to you Drew! And, here’s to the rest of my loyal readers! Cheers!