Several hours before my show, I went to a Thai restaurant. What we - and by we I mean me and the people I went to lunch with - commented on was not the food, but the Muzak playing on the loudspeakers in the restaurant. While eating our curries and pad thais, we were serenaded by Wilco, Belle and Sebastian, the Arcade Fire, and Broken Social Scene.
The moral, if anything, is that if you can hear that type of stuff as background music at a fairly pedestrian Thai restaurant - I certainly didn't smell any search for the pretense of an "indie" image there - then what's the purpose of playing it on the airwaves, when people are (allegedly) tuning to us to find stuff they'll "hear nowhere else"? Granted, you are going to find the Arcade Fire and the Broken Social Scene on every fifteen-year-old's iPod in between the Taylor Swift and the Killers. The question this raises for my show is how we are going to perform the subtle dance between playing music because it's good - after all, Broken Social Scene are one of the best and most interesting bands of the past decade - and because it's something you won't hear anywhere else.
I actually wanted to play the Arcade Fire on Friday's show. I just couldn't find the CDs.
Another interesting bit about my show was the automation block that followed it. Rerewind didn't show up again, and I had the 8:00-9:00 hour as well; however, I already had plans to go smoke the hookah with some friends, so I cut the show at 8:30, and turned automation on. So that the station is always playing something while the transmitter is on, we program a computer to play music randomly. The thing is that, normally, automation plays really esoteric experimental music. I ended my show with a song by Wire that fit those criteria - esoteric and experimental - perfectly: it was just twenty minutes of arhythmic noise. But then... automation was playing Mates of State and Cursive. Talk about a change of roles.
1. Railroad Jerk - Bang the Drum [from 1995's One Track Mind] (2:46)
2. Red Sparowes - A Mutiny [from 2010's The Fear is Excruciating, But Therein Lies the Answer] (5:31)
3. Mogwai - I Love You, I'm Going to Blow Up Your School [from 2008's The Hawk is Howling] (7:33)
4. Versus - Frog [from 1994's Frog 7"]
5. Happy Birthday - Too Shy [from 2010's Happy Birthday] (3:00)
6. Air Miami - World Cup Fever [from 1995's Me Me Me] (2:12)
7. Barcelona - I Have the Password to Your Shell Account [from 2000's Zero One Infinity] (3:10)
8. Archers of Loaf - Last Word [from 1993's Icky Mettle] (3:36)
9. Comet Gain - Germ of Youth Part II [from 2009's Broken Record Prayers] (2:18)
10. The Volcano Suns - Jak [from 1985's The Bright Orange Years] (2:01)
11. Los Campesinos! - Plan A [from 2010's Romance is Boring] (2:02)
12. Double Dagger - The Lie/The Truth [from 2009's More] (2:56)
13. Galaxie 500 - Listen, The Snow is Falling [from 1991's This Is Our Music] (7:48)
14. Spoon - Decora [from 2004's Old Enough to Know Better: 15 Years of Merge Records] (3:12)
15. Yo La Tengo - I Heard You Looking [from 19923s Painful] (7:01)
16. Guided by Voices - Motor Away ["Hi-Fi" Version] [from 1995's Motor Away 7"]
17. Strapping Fieldhands - Boo Hoo Hoo [from 1994's Discus]
18. The Clean - Big Soft Punch [from 1990's Vehicle] (2:32)
19. The White Stripes - Little Ghost [from 2010's Under Great White Northern Lights] (2:23)
20. Silkworm - Three Beatings [from 1992's L'Ajre] (6:52)
21. Snow Patrol - NYC [from 1998's Songs for Polar Bears] (4:27)
22. Mission of Burma - Weatherbox [from 1982's Vs.] (3:25)
23. The White Stripes - Black Math [from 2010's Under Great White Northern Lights] (3:06)
24. Pavement - Fillmore Jive [from 1994's Crooked Rain, Crooked Rain] (6:38)
25. Wire - A Panamanian Craze? [from 1996's Turns and Strokes] (16:15)