Top Ten Teen-years Albums

This was floating around facebook the last few days.

List 10 albums that made a lasting impression on you as a TEENAGER, but only one per band/artist. In approximate chronological order of when I found them.

1. Aerosmith – Get a Grip (1993) – I wasn’t sure this fell into my teen years, until I looked up the release date, and saw that it had to. This is the first CD I remember wanting to buy on my own. My clique of friends all had it, and we were scandalized that there were nipple prints on the CD.
2. Salt n Pepa – Very Necessary (1993) – I loved this record, I listened to it a ton with headphones when I got my first portable CD player, in my room, doing my homework, even though I had a perfectly working stereo. Thinking of this record got “None Of Your Business” in my head last night. Awesome.
3. Stone Temple Pilots – Purple (1994) – While I still don’t really think of them as “grunge”, I guess this is the first grunge cd I loved and listened to all the time (I owned Pearl Jam’s “Ten” but never listened to it).
4. REM – Monster (1994) – I listened to this, and the STP record, all the time when I was playing my Super Nintendo. In retrospect I’m not really sure why I liked this record, but at the time it was great.
5. The Cranberries – No Need To Argue (1994) – Zombie still is a fantastic song. The rest is a bit mellow, but it holds up.
6. Elastica – Elastica (1995) – I heard the song “Connection” while hanging out in Media Play and bought the CD. I remember writing song lyrics on the desk in study hall, only to see that someone had written the next line after. Turns out that someone was Marney.
7. Michael Jackson – HIStory (1995) – 2 records have changed my life. This was the first. It led me to travel, spend a lot of money, and most importantly, led me to meet some of the best friends who I still have to this day. Awww.
8. U2 – Achtung Baby (1991) – Not discovered until I was at Geneseo, and not appreciated upon first listens, when I listened to it months later, it’s brilliance blinded me. So amazing.
9. Nine Inch Nails – The Fragile (1999) – The 2nd life changing record. Even if it took 6 years for it to make a huge impact as far as leading me to travel and meet great people, this was an emotionally impactful record. I really don’t know what my life would be like if I had never fallen down the NIN-hole.
10. Orgy – Candyass (1998) – Orgy was the first band I met, and was the band responsible for getting me into seeing concerts, and following tours, and trying to meet bands and get autographs. They were fun, and super cute, yay boys in makeup.

u2 toronto

U2 on tour again, yay. J ditched me for the show to go see some other show back in Buffalo so I recruited Mary to come with me. She hadn’t seen them before and figured they won’t be touring forever so…We were warned that traffic had been really bad because of the PanAm games, but it was the typical 2 hours and slow traffic on the highway. We were early enough to catch dinner first, and got in line right when doors were opening. (we are officially too old to queue).

No opener!

Bono came out from the zamboni entrance opposite from the stage, which made everyone go nutso. Bono sounds so good, it’s amazing. So many bands from the 90s that we all used to like, none of them can sing anymore. And Bono had been sounding rough for a while, but on 360 tour and this one, it’s incredible. Bravo to his coach and whatever routine that he has now, that he can do back to back nights with no problem.

U2 is such a joyful show. Even when it’s heavy, like this setlist is, it’s still like…a happy show. NIN shows aren’t happy. They’re awesome, but joyful is not a word to use there. But Bono walks on stage and you just feel joy. Even when he’s being annoying and talking too much, joy. It’s such a different feeling.

The band sounded great of course. I always have an issue with their set structures because they always tend to group all the new stuff together. They need to spread it out more. I understand that this tour they are really trying to tell a story, and maybe things need to be grouped, but…even as a giant fan, they start to lose me sometimes.

I don’t mind the new album, tho it’s not super exciting to me, and the new songs sounded much better live. Raised by Wolves, which is one I like, was really good. Until the End of the World was nice to hear, as always, though there was no “bull fight” and we were in prime position for it to happen right in front of us. Super glad they brought back Bullet the Blue Sky, I’d go to more shows just to hear that song.

The stage went the entire length of the ice, with a giant screen running the whole length. I think they must go to NIN shows to get stage ideas, because the screens had a walkway in between that the band went in, and performed behind the screens just like NIN. And the visuals on the screens would part so you could see them, just like NIN. And flourescent stage lights/art just like NIN. hahah.

They performed Mysterious Ways on the small stage, and a girl had a sign that said Me + Guitar etc, so Bono brought her up on stage. Except he couldn’t actually see the sign and thought she was a belly dancer, so she got to spin around with Bono when he realized she wasn’t actually a dancer, and after the song he told her he had glaucoma and couldn’t read LOL They kept her up there and gave her a guitar, and she got to play Angel of Harlem and All I Want Is You with them. And she could actually play, unlike the Hamilton show way back in 2001. It was cool. After that Edge had technical problems with the guitar he needed, and he was mad so they brought out the piano and sent Larry and Adam away and did a different song.

And Bono did the Shine like Stars ending to With or Without You!! I almost cried. So great.

Besides having to suffer through a video break of Johnny Cash singing The Wanderer it was a great show. The new stuff sounded good, the old stuff was great of course (though I can still go without ever seeing Pride ever again), and there were only 2 songs I wasn’t familiar with. It was a good time, kinda wish I got to see the previous night. Hoping they do another leg next year.

The Miracle (Of Joey Ramone)
The Electric Co. / Send In The Clowns (snippet)
Vertigo
I Will Follow
Iris (Hold Me Close)
Cedarwood Road
Song For Someone
Sunday Bloody Sunday
Raised By Wolves
Until The End Of The World
(Intermission)
Invisible
Even Better Than The Real Thing
Mysterious Ways
Angel Of Harlem
All I Want Is You
Every Breaking Wave
Bullet The Blue Sky
Pride (In The Name Of Love)
Beautiful Day
With Or Without You / Shine Like Stars (snippet)

encore(s):
City Of Blinding Lights
Mother And Child Reunion (snippet)
Where The Streets Have No Name
One

new music!

I always said I wasn’t going to be one of those “old” people who wasn’t in touch with new music, but, here I am, and I’m that person. I realized the other day I haven’t bought or even really listened to music from a band that’s come out in the last decade. Sure I’ve listened to new music, but from old bands. Ugh. And I hate to say new bands suck, but…nothing that I *have* heard on the occasions that I’ve listened to the radio has caught my fancy. So I’ll just put in my decades old music (god, how is it possible that I can even say that!?!), or new music from decades old bands, and enjoy.

Which brings me to this week. New music from one of my fav bands, The Tea Party. Their first in a decade! I was excited and scared all at the same time, as their last album Seven Circles was mediocre, and their live release from last year, or the year before was pretty freaking terrible (the mixing not the performance). But holy crap this record is pretty good. I borrowed it from the internet last week, but crossed over to Canada the other day to pick it up from HMV since American amazon wasn’t offering it. Of course like any record, a few songs I could leave, like yet another Daniel Lanois cover (The Maker), a throw away hidden instrumental at the end, and one I’m not sure of (Black Roses) but over all, the songs go back to their roots, covering all the different sounds they’ve had over the years – zepplin-esque, eastern influenced rock. Thankfully they lost the Tom Morello guitar tone from Seven Circles and went back to the style Jeff Martin is best at. I wasn’t impressed with the initial single, Water’s On Fire, because it’s a ballad, and I thought a poor choice for a first single in a decade, but it’s grown on me and it’s not that bad. Brazil has great rock guitar in it, that we expect from them, Submission sounds like a Gary Numan cover (specifically Cars, and I guess it was intentional) and thus is cool, and the “required” long song The Ocean At The End is reminiscent of Correspondences, and really very nice. I’m very happy with it and excited to see them live again – AS LONG AS THEY PLAY A DIFFERENT DAMNED SETLIST! In looking through my blog archives in search for a date for one of their shows from 05, I discovered Eric and I bitching about them playing the same setlist ALL THE WAY BACK THEN!

And then came the surprise. U2 released their album with no fanfare or build up on itunes as part of Apple’s iphone 6 press conference, for free. Called “Songs of Innocence” it’s been 5 years in the making and is rumored to be only one of several releases coming up. Dave Fanning, friend of U2 and radio guy (?) suspects it’s one of 3 coming releases chronicling U2 decade by decade as this one is all about the 1970s and the band themselves have claimed to have more material ready to be released. My first impression is…we’ve heard this all before. It’s the same sound, same style, same…thing. Even though Eno and Lanois had nothing to do with it, it’s just….U2 I guess. I hate to say it, I’ve been denying it for years, but I don’t want U2 to sound like U2. I like 90s U2 when they did something different and ground breaking, and didn’t just repeat themselves ad nauseum. I was excited when they were working with new people on new music, but in the end, it’s just them. Still. There is nothing exciting on this record, nothing catchy, nothing fun. I hesitate to say it’s depressing, it’s just not exciting. The first song The Miracle (Of Joey Ramone) held potential that very quickly went away, devolving into the usual, what I like to call “Miracle Drug”ing of the album. It has the same vibe as How to Dismantle an Atomic Bomb and Electrical Storm. It is rather minimal, with no weird random out of place Eno-esque organs or horns, which is fine by me, but there isn’t anything else there either. (I just looked at a review of the album when looking for the track titles and it said that the album sounds like U2 ripping off all the bands that rip off U2 which reminded me that I had the thought that the album sounded like Coldplay LOL)

So that was my first impression. After listening a few times, I will say the 2nd half of the album is much better than the first because it sounds different! There is some “weirdness”, or well weird for U2. There is strong bass lines that remind you Adam exists, there are female vocals from someone, there is interesting guitar work from Edge, and slow synthy stuff. While there aren’t any lyrics that stand out as cringe worthy, like “people get squashed crossing the tracks” from Bomb, the lyrics aren’t good either. Bono used to be a poet, wtf happened to him? And while there aren’t any songs I out right despise like Moment of Surrender or Yahweh to name a few, there aren’t any at this point that I can say I like either. And that’s sad. I could easily never listen to this again and not miss it. Susan had listened to it before me, since she has itunes, and had said it was edgier than their last one. I’m not sure what she was listening to LOL.

But I will keep listening until I know every word, as I have a history of not liking U2 albums at first listen – yes even Achtung Baby, the greatest album ever made, I didn’t appreciate at first. I’m sure it will grow on me some, but a classic or brilliant album it is definitely not.
***
In other news. I’ve been struggling with my head big time. Since July my headaches have become intolerable. I finally went to see neurologists again, and they gave me a nerve block in my head which was a failure. So now I’ve been put on another preventative rx, topamax. Starting week 2, I’m not sure of it’s efficacy yet. I can up the dosage 2 more times, so we’ll see. I’m not sure I’ll be able to handle the side effects if they get worse with the increased dosage though, as it makes my hands and face tingle, a bit of dizziness and stupidness lol. I’ve started taking dice class, finally after 11 years, so tingling hands and stupidness isn’t really good for that hah. Failing that, I already qualify for botox treatments, as I have a 30 year history of failed treatments, but that also takes time to start working so it’s best to have them under control before starting botox to bridge the gap. I just know I need something to work, and soon, cuz I can’t handle it anymore.

U2 Pittsburgh 2011

my 10th u2 show was with frank and kate in pittsburgh, the last US show of the 360 tour. we headed down around noon, met meredith at a restaurant called Fat Heads which was fantastic – 40 different kinds of beer on tap, and huge portions of really yummy food. found our way to heinz field, which seemed smaller than i expected and claimed our place on the floor. adam side, maybe 20 people back, right near the end of that leg of the claw.

the show was great, of course. same set list as the toronto show, but after they finished “moment of surrender”, they talked for a second and decided to play another song, “bad”. sweet. i felt sorta crappy and hot the whole show, by the time the encore and “one” came along i felt like i was going to pass out so i went out of the crowd and had to sit on the gross metal floor for the rest of the encore. that’s ok tho. you can see everything on the giant claw screens.

walking to the car afterward we got passed by u2’s motorcade, each member in their own suv (so if they crash they don’t all die? like the president and vp? lol). that was stupidly cool to see hahaha

u2 – rogers center, toronto

“Thank you for your patience,” Bono said “Some of you were two years younger when you bought tickets for tonight’s show.”

Finally the day came to see U2 in Toronto. I only had the tickets since November 2009….it was Cassie’s birthday, and she wanted to leave at 5am, so I got out of work, jumped in the shower, LeighAnne picked us up and we headed out to the Rogers Center, getting there around 7am. There were more people there at 7am than there were in 2009 when we got there after 10. Bummer. We ended up numbers 304-306 and settled in for the long, hot, day. I tried to sleep in line but that didn’t work out too well so I gave up. It was hot. It was maybe going to rain but it didn’t. So it was hot. Did I mention it was hot? When the clouds were around it wasn’t too bad, nice temperature and a breeze, but when the sun came out we roasted. It was unpleasant. And I am sunburned, yet again, even though I put on 70 spf at home and used someone’s 45 spf in line…great. They let us in at 5 I think…maybe it was 4, but either way we mostly got the same spot, rail outside, that Cassie and I had in 09 2nd show. And then I got a phone call from a guy I sold my extra ticket to, and someone else’s extra, and it ruined everything. The one ticket (NOT MINE) was invalid, it had been reported lost and a refund issued. Awesome. wtf. So that pretty much ruined my night, as I had to talk to him a few times on the phone and he was understandably upset, and then figure out what went on on the other end. It made me feel sick, plus the fact I hadn’t sleep in 32 hours at that point, I ended up leaving our spot with Lei and heading to the back of the field for the show. I was able to sit/lay down during Interpol (who were so boring), and just relax. I felt bad for leaving Cassie alone at her birthday show, but I know I couldn’t have stayed there another hour before Interpol went on, and an hour after that for U2.

I had stayed away from online setlists, but I think I knew all the surprises anyway. Must say I was very pleased with the setlist, since it was very 90s heavy, opening with 4 songs from Achtung. yesssss. I can still complain, as 2 of the 3 songs from No Line On The Horizon I think are 2 of the worst songs U2 has ever done, and they should change them out for “Breathe” and “Magnificent” but really, overall, fantastic set. The band sounded great, Bono was in top form after his back breaking injury, just excellent. Yes I wish I could have stayed up front, but back on the lawn we had fun too. There are huge screens to watch so it’s not a big deal if you can’t see well.

Even Better Than The Real Thing
The Fly
Mysterious Ways
Until the End of the World (always a highlight)
I Will Follow
Get On Your Boots
I Still Haven’t Found What I’m Looking For
Stay
Beautiful Day
Elevation
Pride
Miss Sarajevo
Zooropa (!!! totally awesome to hear)
City of Blinding Lights
Vertigo
I’ll Go Crazy (remix) – Discotheque (snippet, the most we’re ever going to get, so i’ll take it)
Sunday Bloody Sunday
Walk On

Encore(s):
One
Where the Streets Have No Name
Hold Me Thrill Me Kiss Me Kill Me (!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! this made my life!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! sooooo awesome)
With or Without You
Moment of Surrender

Refound Cassie, headed out, construction traffic jam in Oakville as always (I’m not sure I’ve ever left a concert where there wasn’t construction traffic in Oakville) and got home around 2am….38 hours awake, not fun. I think this will be the last show I queue for…at least for a ridiculous amount of time. Definitely will never be queuing again on no sleep, that is for sure. Just too old for this now 🙂

Decided to go see U2 again in Pittsburgh on the 26th. It’s the last US show of the last leg of the tour (they added a date someplace in Canada). Managed to get tickets on stubhub for only $50 after fees…!!! Ridiculously cheap ($20 under face). So Kate, who was unable to get off of work for this show, and Frank and I are gonna go. No queueing tho!!! 🙂 And I decided to sell my APC tickets for Pittsburgh in August, cuz I don’t think I’d enjoy sitting through the Emotive setlist again. They are listed on stubhub for $50, hopefully they sell (it’s my first time buying and selling through there).

dream

dream: i was at a u2 show, and there was a part of the show where bono would come up on stage on a bed from below, like he was madonna or someone. and he would always bring a girl on stage (i forget the song, it may not have even been a u2 song at first, but then it turned into “angels of harlem”). so somehow i ended up wandering around back stage and told cassie i was going to go down below to try to get pulled on stage during that part, and voila bono brought me on stage. so i got to dance with bono and then back in the crowd. but then i ended up getting pulled back on stage with the full band, and i got to meet them all and it was awesome.

so old!

cassie and i had a “We’re Old” moment at u2…on thursday we were in line with 2 young girls who were skipping school to queue all day. i couldn’t tell if they were high school or young university students. possibly high school because she said they went to such and such academy, which sounds more high school than college. we were talking about the show the night before and i had said they didn’t play alot of really old stuff, besides “the unforgettable fire” and “sunday bloody sunday”, to which the one girl replied “oh no they didn’t play beautiful day?”…..

*sigh* 2000 was considered “old u2” to these girls…

we’re old.

U2 toronto, September 16&17

u2 in toronto sept 16 and 17

things didn’t really go as planned, as kate had to cancel because she couldn’t find her passport, and leighanne had to cancel because at the last minute her work wouldn’t give her her time off 🙁 so it ended up just being me and cassie heading up to toronto for the 2 shows. because of traffic we didn’t end up getting to the rogers centre until just after 10am, and were 272 in line. not too bad. we were aiming to get inside the circle, towards the back center and the story was that 2500 people can fit inside so it didn’t look like a problem. hung out at the venue the whole day with walks back and forth to the hotel. got let in around 5:30 and ended up basically where we wanted to be on the inside of the stage. snow patrol went on at quarter after 7, and they weren’t bad. i didn’t know them, so i was expecting whiney emo stuff, and it wasn’t so that was good 🙂 i wouldn’t listen to them on my own, but they were better than the openers in 05.

u2 went on just before 9, with bowie’s “space oddity” as the intro song. yay bowie. u2 came out opening with “breathe” which was very good. the crowd however, sucked ass. they were completely not into the show, not cheering or singing or moving or anything. wth. it was bizarre and crappy. once again, for reasons i can’t comprehend, u2 starts their show with the majority of their new material. it all sounded great, but why not space it out? whatev. “magnificent” was a little disappointing, it lacked the epicness that i was expecting, and i think i figure out that it was because larry’s drums weren’t loud enough. it has such a driving beat that needed to be brought out more. the “i’ll go crazy…” remix was a bit reggae and fun, and it made the song tolerable as long as you pay no attention to the crappy motivational speaker lyrics 🙂 “moment of surrender”, the closer, is still crap. bono’s vocals sound painful. but edge and adam sounded good. it was nice to hear “stay” again as i had only heard it at my very first show in 2001. “until the end of the world” and “ultraviolet” were awesome, as is anything from achtung baby hehe. bono hit himself in the face with the mic during “one” i think, when he went to say something to the crowd haha. “unforgettable fire” was pretty great, especially with the way their light screens move down forming a big red cone above the band. all in all, it was a good show. the crowd still seemed pretty crappy through out. part of me wondered if it just sounded quiet because it was outside with the dome open, as opposed to in an arena where the crowd noise would be echoing around. but then the 2nd night the crowd was way louder, so it must not have been the open dome.

the next day was more of the same, getting in line earlier than the day before but being almost 100 back from where we were the day before. but once again it wasn’t a bad spot. we aimed for outside stage rail, edge side, and got it. it was a much better vantage point, as i am spoiled with always being on the rail and being able to see. i didn’t like having to look around heads to see the stage the night before, and this position meant no one in front of us. woo. 2nd night got some set list changes including “mysterious ways” which is a rarity on this tour. bono also did something he hadn’t done yet this tour, and brought someone on stage…he pulled a little kid, maybe 9 years old, up out of the inner crowd onto one of the moving bridges. it was a bit scary cuz i was sure he’d drop he kid or separate the kid’s shoulder haha. but the kid made it up on the bridge in time for “city of blinding lights”, ran around the catwalk with bono, got to wear bono’s glasses, and had bono sing to him. how awesome! what a great story to tell at school the next day. there are high rise apartment buildings around rogers center, and at one point bono was talking and called out to the buildings, asking anyone who was watching the show from the top floors to flash their lights, and a few apartments did hahahaha. edge’s mic stoped working at one point, and while they fixed it bono gave a speech about all the celebrities he had run into around town while doing his laundry, and other places, and closed it with “then i went back to my hotel and megan fox was there” hahahaha. everyone got a kick out of that one. anyway, another good show with a much better crowd.

sept 16
1. Breathe
2. No Line On The Horizon
3. Get On Your Boots
4. Magnificent
5. Beautiful Day/ Alison(Snippet)
6. I Still Haven’t Found What I’m Looking For
7. Elevation
8. Your Blue Room
9. Unknown Caller
10. Until The End Of The World
11. Stay (Faraway, So Close)
12. The Unforgettable Fire
13. City Of Blinding Lights
14. Vertigo/ Pump It Up (Snippet)
15. I’ll Go Crazy If I Don’t Go Crazy Tonight (Remix)
16. Sunday Bloody Sunday
17. MLK
18. Walk On

19. One w/ Hear Us Coming/ Amazing Grace(Snippet)
20. Where The Streets Have No Name

Encore
21. Ultraviolet(Light My Way)
22. With or Without You
23. Moment Of Surrender

sept 17th
1. Breathe
2. No Line On The Horizon
3. Get On Your Boots
4. Magnificent
5. Mysterious Ways
6. Beautiful Day
7. Elevation
8. I Still Haven’t Found What I’m Looking For/ Movin On Up(Snippet)
9. Unknown Caller
10. New Year’s Day
11. Stuck In A Moment You Can’t Get Out Of
12. The Unforgettable Fire
13. City Of Blinding Lights
14. Vertigo
15. I’ll Go Crazy If I Don’t Go Crazy Tonight(Remix)/ Two Tribes(Snippet)
16. Sunday Bloody Sunday/ Rock The Casbah(Snippet)
17. MLK
18. Walk On

19. One/ Amazing Grace(Snippet)
20. Where The Streets Have No Name

Encore
21. Ultraviolet(Light My Way)
22. With or Without You
23. Moment Of Surrender

i’m not sure how i feel about stadium shows. you could hear a pretty bad echo during quieter songs like “one” and “with or without you”, but over all the acoustics were decent. but arenas and their echoes sorta give a richness to the sound that i actually like. it was great to see a show in such a big place, but small is better. the claw stage set up looked very cool in the shadow of the cn tower, and under the open dome. it really was massive and scary looking haha. i had fun, that’s all that matters.

U2 wishlist

been listening to live u2 (even the awful boston show with the worst setlist ever) and thinking of what i want in september…

new songs i’d like to hear for sure:
magnificent
breathe
get on your boots

new songs i wouldn’t mind hearing but wouldn’t mind if they don’t play them
no line on the horizon
white as snow
cedars of lebanon
stand up comedy

songs i have not heard before but really really want to (which means i’ll hear none of them)
hold me thrill me kiss me kill me
discotheque
mofo
do you feel loved?
last night on earth
please
love is blindness
acrobat
so cruel
dirty day

songs i’ve seen but are still an absolute MUST
bullet the blue sky
until the end of the world
running to stand still
sunday bloody sunday
city of blinding lights
gone
where the streets have no name (really only in this category cuz ppl would yell at me if i didn’t)

songs i’ve seen but wouldn’t mind seeing again
mysterious ways
who’s gonna ride you’re wild horses
even better than the real thing
stay (faraway so close)
walk on
beautiful day
staring at the sun
desire
out of control (cuz i have to pick at least one old song)
love and peace or else

old songs i can do without
pride (for sure, please, just stop playing it)
i still haven’t found what i’m looking for
one
elevation
vertigo
new year’s day

songs i absolutely DO NOT want to hear (which means they’ll play all of them)
moment of surrender
i’ll go crazy if i don’t go crazy tonight
yahweh
miracle drug
all because of you
sometimes you can’t make it on your own (really, anything from how to dismantle an atomic bomb)
grace
miami
miss sarajevo
peace on earth

and i think that is it. cuz really, only cassie will read this.

yahoo re: metallica’s induction into the rock and roll hall of fame: “The evening ended with a jam for the ages as Metallica, Beck, Jimmy Page, Aerosmith’s Joe Tyler and Flea brought the house down with a performance of the Yardbirds’ “Train Kept A Rollin.””

who is joe tyler? did aerosmith get a new band member? 😛

the u2 tickets arrived in the mail, and you know how the first ticket in the bunch is your receipt…i didn’t realize quite how high the fees were until i saw that receipt…$53 in fees. that’s almost one whole extra ticket. i really wonder what that money goes to…$12 per ticket x 10,000 tickets = $120,000 for what? that is a racket and a half. arg