Thursday, May 02, 2013

I <3 Pop

"Before this river becomes an ocean / before you throw my heart back on the floor / I'll reconsider my foolish notion / Well I need someone to hold me but I'll wait for something more ..."

So, as you've been able to tell by now, I sort of have a soft spot the size of the Grand Canyon for pop music. Don't get me wrong, I love the independents, and believe they are the last vestiges of true artistry in rock 'n roll.

However, there's always been something about the infectious feeling -- that undeniably happy, hopeful feeling you get when you hear truly timeless pop song -- that I've been in love with since as long as I can remember.

Save for influences by my classical training is a flautist, my dad's obsession with AM talk and classic rock radio, my mother's love of 80s metal and Bob Seger, I was raised on top 40 radio from the age of at least 5, and pretty much that was the extent of my exposure to (and obsession with) music for the vast majority of my childhood.

Until I started working in a music store at age 17; the rest is history.

But my recent laziness in updating my iPod, refusal to waste precious GB on the iPhone on music, unwillingness to use any "free" streaming apps (Pandora, fuck YOU), laziness to dig out my old CD collection from the basement AND being left with a broken DC adapter for my Sirius receiver for the ELEVENTY-EFFING-BILLIONTH time -- and subsequent refusal to spend yet another $12 on its replacement -- I've been listening to a ton of top 40 terrestrial radio.

Because, apparently, that's the only format that exists in the St. Louis market. Literally 4 stations are almost identical; and all are peppered with "favorites" from days of yore.

It's that, NPR, an independent community station, some country stations, and conservative radio. The end.

It's largely grating and annoying; even the independent station is largely unlistenable (except for gems like Allen Dahm's Bittersweet Melody, which I always be sure to catch 5-7 Wednesday mornings on KDHX, and you should too), and I can only take so much NPR before I want to kill myself (news) or kill someone else (Diane Rehm's voice, among others).

So I find myself flipping a lot. Longtime favorites that recur are "Dancing Queen," "Under Pressure" (and pretty much everything Abba or Queen for that matter), "Turn to Stone" (and all ELO/Jeff Lynne), "What Is Life" (George Harrison), "Freedom" or "Faith" (George Michael, you know, the singer-songwriter).

But I slowly noticed some newer big, power-pop acts started creeping their way in. It started with Bruno Mars' "Locked Out of Heaven," which is one of the catchiest, sexiest dance tracks I've heard in a long time. Then it was Florence Welch feat. Calvin Harris' "Sweet Nothing," followed by Brittany and's "Scream and Shout," and most recently Icona Pop's "I Don't Care."

Well, wait; it actually all started out with Fun.'s "We Are Young." Followed by the rest of the catalog. I'm a fangirl. That's just fun, good pop that reminds me a bit of Simon and Garfunkel at times. I'm unashamed of my admission. To hell with those who disagree.

Of note: most of these are dance tracks. I think my not-so-subconscious is trying to tell me something ...

Perhaps it's time for a trip to the CLUB!

Also, too, to Radio Shack. I do need to get that receiver back in order. I miss my *good* independent radio. And Howard.

1 comment:

  1. Sweet Nothing is hands down the most dancetastic, chest bursting track I've heard in some time, but it's funny that it's just recently hit the radio. I found the video for it probably a year ago. Also, I can't bring myself to buy the album because I just can't stand many of the other tracks. Ah well.

    I've been doing the same in the car. I sold off all of my cds, save mixes from friends and a couple of stragglers. I usually just listen to NPR and KDHX if they're playing something other than the blues or bluegrass, but I do have three virtually identical top 40 stations that I rotate between whenever those two options get boring. It saves me having to listen to the commercials in between, at least.