NOTE: Because of a godsdammed bug between Flash and Firefox for Windows, I’ve had to break this up into two parts in order for the players to work for those with that particular configuration. Stupid internets.
If you’re running Firefox and get stuck on “buffering,” restarting your browser should work.
23 MUSICAL MOMENTS TO DIE FOR (13-23)
- You can’t spend your teenage years in a band with Paul Westerberg without something rubbing off, and Tommy Stinson got it right — and like Paul before him, got my life at the time — at 3:50 in Friday Night is Killing Me by Bash & Pop.
— From 1993’s spirited if vocally limited Friday Night is Killing Me
- Robyn Hitchcock wanders around in a forest of “ahhs” with just his acoustic guitar for company at 2:29 in Autumn is Your Last Chance by Robyn Hitchcock.
— From 1984’s strangely affecting I Often Dream of Trains
- Gods know that I’m nowhere near a Pet Sounds fanatic. I’ve always thought that it was overrated, and I’ll take one of their singles comps any day. But even I can’t deny the heavenly pile of voices that starts at 1:59 in God Only Knows by The Beach Boys.
— From 1966’s overrated Pet Sounds
- “Jesus Christ! / Why can’t we do anything right? / What’s the matter with you / What’s the matter with me?” Tom Gray asks the unanswerable questions one last time at 3:03 in Heart in the Street by The Brains.
— From 1981’s disappointing follow-up Electronic Eden
- It’s the joyous, headlong rush of kids with all the energy and brains in the world that makes them earn their exclamation points at 0:42 of Death to Los Campesinos! by Los Campesinos!
— From 2008’s breathless Hold On Now, Youngster…
- First, the singer declares that he’ll “splatter my brains all over the wall for you,” and then the guitars spend the next few minutes doing just that at 4:21 in …For You by The Chant.
— From 1985’s beyond obscure Three Sheets to the Wind
- In perhaps most the most Neil Youngy of all Neil Young songs, he declares: “People my age, they don’t do the things I do.” Which has been true for his entire career. At 1:05 in I’m The Ocean by Neil Young.
— From 1995’s pretty great Mirror Ball
- Noone is ever going to mistake Jeff Tweedy — or any of his hardcore fans — for a hard rocker, but even he understands the visceral power of stoopid as shown by the Big Dumb Headbangy Part at 3:58 in Spiders (Kidsmoke) by Wilco.
— From 2004’s new beginning A Ghost is Born
- Has there ever been anything so perfectly lovely as Roger McGuinn’s 12-String Rickenbacker guitar? No. Never. At 1:56 in 5D by The Byrds.
— From 1967’s underrated Fifth Dimension
- You could almost hear the tensions pulling apart the entire band — and an entire strain of 80’s indie rock as well — as David Lowery repeats “of life and love” at 4:25 in All Her Favorite Fruit by Camper Van Beethoven.
— From 1989’s bittersweet Key Lime Pie
- You’d never think it with a band that seems so, well, basic, but between the weird drumbeat, the huge spaces between the chords and the melancholy vocal, nothing else in Fresno radio in 1977 quite sounded like the chorus at 1:45 of Southern Girls by Cheap Trick.
— From 1977’s seminal In Color