1996


Title: Big Bang Baby

Artist: Stone Temple Pilots

Album: Tiny Music…Songs From The Vatican Gift Shop

Year Released: 1996

What It Is: In my ears, one of the few songs that realized the potential of Stone Temple Pilots. No turgidity, no excess, no sexism. Just good, strong, yet melodic rock and roll.

Riffage / Hookage: A decent riff and a pretty cool melody. Not much more that you can ask for, is there?

Cowbell?: Noper.

Words Of Wisdom: “So turn it up and burn it
Theres a hole in your head
Theres a hole in your head
Where the birds cant sing along

Does anybody know
How the story really goes
How the story really goes
Or should we all just hum along”

Mixology Report: It’s a quite versatile track, and can fit pretty well anywhere in a mix. It’s especially good at the beginning or as a transitional cut between genres.

Top Five Genius Results: Burden In My Head – Soundgarden
I’ll Stick Around – Foo Fighters
Animal – Pearl Jam
Seether – Veruca Salt
Zero – Smashing Pumpkins

There was this station in Indiana, X103, that was the first ‘alternative rock’ station, and yes, they became as predictable as the local AOR station. Those tracks probably made up a commercial free block, no doubt.

For The Good Of The Order: I first heard “Sex Type Thing” on MTV, liked it and bought their first record. I thought it was a turgid mess, and then read that the lyrics were pretty well misogynistic. So I sold it back. And I resisted STP for the longest time. When I heard this cut, I secretly liked it, but didn’t say anything. I finally bought it on iTunes, and now I have 5 (count ’em) STP tracks on le Pod. I still think some of their ‘hits’ are boring post-grunge sludge feasts, but I do admit they have a few good tracks.

Here they are on the Late Show. I always thought bassist Robert DeLeo looked more like a wise guy than a rock star.

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Title: Been It

Artist: The Cardigans

Album:First Band On The Moon

Year Released: 1996

What It Is: A catchy pop song that’s not as drippy sweet as “Love Fool”. In fact, it’s a bit naughty! Well, not overtly naughty. I mean, you gotta read between some lines. And then in black and white in others.

Riffage / Hookage: The guitar parts in the verses (under the vocals) subtly drives it. There’s a great hook (hey, it’s a great pop song) and there’s a sinewy guitar-like sound  in the choruses.

Cowbell?: Not here. Sorry Charlie.

Words Of Wisdom: “I’ve been you mother, I’ve been your father
who can ask me for more
I’ve been your sister, I’ve been your mistress
maybe I was your whore
who can ask me for more”

Um, yeah….if SHE’S saying that to ME…then, um….well…I’m confused, kinda. And lumpy…

Mixology Report: A good one, though maybe not for a mix where there are kids afoot.

For The Good Of The Order: Best known for “Lovefool”, the Cardigans have covered Black Sabbath and also had a video seriously edited by MTV for being a bit disturbing. And you thought they were a nice pop band. Ha!

Here’s a video of a bunch of Scandanavians looking furtive and all…

Title: Honky’s Ladder

Artist: The Afghan Whigs

Album: Black Love

Year Released: 1996

What It Is: It ain’t for kids, that’s for sure. This song mines the usual Afghan Whigs territory – dirty, scuzzy people doing dirty scuzzy things.

Riffage / Hookage: The song has a heck of a hook in the verse, and a great slide guitar under the chorus / bridge. However, the song loses a bit of momentum in that – it gets dense. But you know, it’s still a heck of a slide guitar part, so it’s all good.

Cowbell?: Not today sir, no.

Words Of Wisdom: But wait ’till I get done with you
If you tell me don’t get mixed up with the devil
That’s exactly what I’m gonna do”

Mixology Report: It is a very NSFW song (motherfucker appears 21.5 seconds into the song), so obviously not for the kiddies!

For The Good Of The Order: For about five years, this band was supposed to break, but they never did. Then one night, Greg Dulli got broken after a bar fight in Texas. That was the beginning of the end.

Here’s the band doing this song, probably for a late night TV gig. Notice, of course that the magic word gets halfway bleeped.