Michael Wright (Editorial Director)
“Spectral Mornings,” Cornershop—
14-plus minutes of absolute, pilled-up groove, this rocking electronic raga fits equally well whether you’re trying to chill out or wind up.
“Junior’s Farm,” Wings—
The 1-2-3 punch of interviewing Denny Laine, researching a McCartney Album Guide, and scoring tix to Macca’s Nashville show have put me in a very Wingsian mood of late. This is one of the many I know Paul won’t play at that show, but man-oh-man, I wish he would.
“Common People,” William Shatner (with Joe Jackson)—
The Shat’s utterly genius cover of a Pulp classic is side-splittingly hilarious…yet somehow still manages to rock the (expletive) out!
“Rock around the Clock, ”Jeff Beck and the Imelda May Band—
Okay, not technically on my iPod, but every time I run out of steam these days, I jump over to YouTube to watch this clip of Beck just smoking that classic Danny Cedrone solo.
“Lucifer Sam,” The Black Crowes and Oasis—
From a bootleg of a show I caught many moons ago in NYC, this evening closer just tore the roof off Radio City. Best witchcraft song since…err, “Witchcraft.”
Bryan Wawzenek (International Editor)
“All the Way From Memphis,” Mott the Hoople—
Yes, the glory of rock and roll is even worth a trip to Oriole, Kentucky, where your “six-string razor” was mistakenly sent.
“Prophet 15,” Supergrass—
I wish my dreams were as star-studded – Peter Cook, Che Guevara, Davy Crockett and Marvin Gaye – as Gaz Coombes’ nightmares.
“Sex Beat,” Alejandro Escovedo—
The roots rocker’s ominous string quartet cover outshines the original, punky Gun Club version.
“You Want Her Too,” Paul McCartney and Elvis Costello—
I find Sir Paul and Mr. MacManus fighting over a woman so much more plausible than McCartney and Michael Jackson deciding whom the girl belongs to.
“Come Pick Me Up,” Ryan Adams—
Sometimes bad love is better than no love at all. It hurts a little less with a great-sounding harmonica…and a little profanity.
Andrew Vaughan (Editor)
“Move It,” Cliff Richard and The Shadows—
The song that inspired British rock and roll and, in turn, gave us Jeff Beck, Eric Clapton, Keef and Mick, and those scruffy Scousers from Liverpool. Hank Marvin, the Shadows’ guitarist, inspired every young guitar player in the land. Thanks, Hank.
“Joanne,” Michael Nesmith and the First National Band—
Stirring country rock excellence from a young Nesmith, freshly freed from Monkees shackles and developing into one of country rock’s most adventurous and intuitive practitioners.
“Birthday,” The Beatles—
Spunky rock and roll from McCartney, always worth a listen, especially on Sir Paul’s birthday. Hip Hip…
“Ever Fallen in Love,” The Buzzcocks—
Pete Shelley, the band’s enigmatic songwriter was, for a brief period at least, the finest teen angst songwriter of his, or maybe any, generation.
“Three Lions,” The Squad—
Remake of the Lightning Seeds’ 1996 stirring Euros anthem. This time it’s Robbie Williams and Russell Brand wishing and begging for England to win this year’s World Cup. 1966 indeed.
Sean Dooley (Social Media Editor)
“Everlong” (acoustic version), Foo Fighters—
I love the Foo’s original electric version, but I’ve been diggin’ the more emotive acoustic version of late. Dave Grohl’s crowning achievement.
“The Only Exception,” Paramore—
Singer Haley Williams is settling nicely into her role as Gwen Stefani’s heir-apparent. The best track on Paramore’s new album, Brand New Eyes.
“Sick of Myself,” Matthew Sweet—
For an all-too brief moment back in the mid-90s, Sweet rubbed elbows with garage-power-pop’s ruling class. “Sick of Myself” will tell you why.
“Lay It on the Line,” Triumph—
Three days ago, I spent 45 minutes interviewing my musical hero when I was in high school, Triumph’s Rik Emmett. I’m still pinching myself.
“It’s a Wonderful Lie,” Paul Westerberg—
One listen to “It’s a Wonderful Lie” and you just might find yourself squarely in the camp that believes Paul Westerberg is Generation X’s Bob Dylan.