John Heaton (jheaton) wrote,
John Heaton

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My review of grocible's mix

A couple of weeks ago, I agreed to take part in a mix CD exchange organized by tomthedog. I mailed off my CDs this morning on the way to work; I had hoped to get them in the mail sooner, but events conspired against me. Oh well. I'll unlock my post about what's on the CD once I hear that they've started to reach their destinations.

This past Saturday, I received a mix from grocible. I was a bit worried when I first read the track listing; his mix is dominated by hard rock and heavy metal artists, and I'm not really a fan of either genre. But despite that, it turned put to be an enjoyable listen.

The tracks I liked best, unsurprisingly, were those that skewed away from the heavy stuff: "She's On Time," a fun Barenaked Ladies track I'd never heard before; "Bastard," a terrific Ben Folds song from his latest album; "The Most Caffeine You've Ever Seen," an energetic and clever novelty song paying tribute to the Seattle coffee scene; and best of all, Cake's loopy cover of "Mah Na Mah Na," which for my nickel is the highlight of the album. The only non-metal song that failed to resonate with me was "Superwise" by Goodness, a band I'd never heard of before.

The, ah, metallic selections are more of a mixed bag. My favorite of those songs was Nazareth's "Hair of the Dog," probably because the guitarist breaks out a chorus of "Loch Lomond" during his solo. I also enjoyed "Random Acts of Senseless Violence" by Anthrax, "As I Am" by Dream Theater (but mistagoalie was right: there's a lot of pointless wanking in there), "Last Night in Paris" by Queensrÿche, and, surprisingly, "People Say - Gimme Some Hell" by Jon Oliva's Palm. I say surprisingly because on first listen, it was the song I liked least. Oh, and "Don't Fear the Reaper," but I already liked that one. (In fact, at one point in my youth I cited it as my favorite song.) I slightly prefer the original version to the live version included in the mix, but that's probably just because the former is more familiar, and has more cowbell.

As for the rest of the songs on the CD, I'm pretty much indifferent to them. I didn't hate any of them, but I can't say I really like them either. They work well in the context of the mix, but I'm pretty sure I wouldn't bother listening to them otherwise.

Final verdict: thumbs up. There were more songs I liked than not, but I would have appreciated a better balance between the metal and non-metal songs.

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