Play This More Often, Part 2

‘Play This More Often’ is a series of essays meant to highlight songs that deserve more attention and appreciation, all in the humble opinion of this music listener of course. Some of them may be neglected by the public at large, some not taken seriously enough by music writers or some plainly overlooked because of their obscurity. Whatever the case, suggestions via the comments from you are always welcomed.

1) Portishead – Sour Times

Ever wondered what is the most tragic vocal part ever recorded in a song? No need to look any further: it’s here, right when Beth Gibbons sings “nobody loves me”. It’s true that she does continue with “not like you do”, but it doesn’t matter, the damage is already done. The rest of the band answers her by providing the perfect atmosphere – decadent and hypnotizing, in a way that only Portishead can achieve.

2) Oasis – The Importance of Being Idle

The general consensus among music fans is that the only Oasis albums worth listening to are the first two, with the third maybe as an interesting curiosity. That is for the most part accurate, but I’m here to tell you that the rest of them all have at least one essential song. ‘The Importance of Being Idle’ is my number one choice for 2005’s ‘Don’t Believe the Truth’, an ode to laziness that might just find Oasis at their most melodic. I almost always prefer the rocking side of the band, but in this case I just can’t resist the Kinks-esque melody and Noel’s beautiful falsetto.

3) Led Zeppelin – The Battle of Evermore

Why is it that so many people rate Led Zeppelin’s fourth album as one of the all-time best, yet so few of them actually mention ‘The Battle of Evermore’? Has the band ever created such a surreal atmosphere in a song before or after this? What about such a great contrast between this and the previous song, the head-banging paradise that is ‘Rock and Roll’? Whoever you are, can you please stop slicing onions behind my back every single time Plant and Denny harmonize together? And most important, why the hell am I writing the whole paragraph in questions?

4) Pixies – Gigantic

People usually remember ‘Gigantic’ as that one and only Pixies song that bassist Kim Deal sang lead on. Me, I always think of it as the perfect example of that quiet-loud dynamic the band was so good at. Starting at bass-vocal-drum level, continuing with Joey Santiago finding the perfect guitar tone, then culminating with the chorus explosion, this is simply Musical Buildup 101. Not to mention a clear as day influence on Nirvana.

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7 replies

  1. My favourite Pixies song, by far.

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  2. Excellent call on the oasis tune – I look forward to the Noel vocal-songs and this might be my favourite of the bunch!

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  3. I would agree that there’s more to Oasis than just the first two albums but on “Don’t believe the truth”, I prefer “Mucky fingers” and “Lyla”. And yes, “Gigantic” rocks but I only really understood that when I saw it performed live.

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  4. Glad you mention Battle of Evermore. Such a great song for many reasons, yet I know folks who really don’t dig it …

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  5. Good choices OB. Can’t go wrong with he Pixies or Zeppelin. Been listening to a lot of both lately with a little Oasis thrown in.

    Liked by 1 person

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