The Two-Minute Man, Episode 9: Totally Unenthusiastic Edition
Definitely the worst week yet on the Globe. Not even close. Makes me long for the double Petty days of last week. Bad enough to make me think of switching to WOXY of KEXP for a few weeks. KEXP just played Guided By Voices and Sex Pistols back-to-back, so we might have to make that change, although I'll give Weasel another couple weeks to redeem himself.
1. "Thunder Road" - Bruce Springsteen
This is obviously a classic but one part of this song will always bug the hell out of me: "Well I got this guitar and I learned how to make it talk" - that stupid little guitar fill. It's even worse than the sax fill on "10th Avenue Freeze-Out" after the "Big Man joined the band" line.
2. "She's So Cold" - The Rolling Stones
The Stones late-'70s/early-'80s genre experiments in disco and new wave actually sound pretty decent when you revisit them now. Who knew back then that this era could still be considered the "early" part of their career? But this is an undeniably fun song.
3. "Touch of Grey" - Grateful Dead
The answer to the trivia question of "What is the Grateful Dead's only Top 10 hit?" It's a pretty agreeable song, it has a bit of a Traveling Wilburys feel of "Yeah, we're old and past our prime but we're OK with that and we can still write a fun little song." Apparently the first-ever live performance was at the Cap Centre back in 1982. Anybody there for that one? (Who actually remembers anything?)
4. "The Way" - Fastball
Ah, modern rock radio one-hit wonders of the '90s. For every Nada Surf, who managed to have a successful career after being written off by many as a band with a novelty song, there's a Fastball. Or a Marcy Playground. Or a Harvey Danger.
5. "Over My Head (Cable Car)" - The Fray
I have a theory that every city has about a dozen bands capable of writing well-crafted, radio-ready, shlocky tunes like this one. It doesn't take much, just some breathy vocals, a little piano and a soaring chorus.
9. "I'll Stand By You" - The Pretenders
I'll stand by you? More like I'll turn this song off immediately the next time it's on the radio. Love ya, Chrissie, but sappy late-career power ballad just isn't your strong suit.
10. "Back in the High Life Again" - Steve Winwood
The boxed wine of classic rock songs.
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