Sunday, August 29, 2010

favorite album list: Pixies - "Doolittle"

Here I am again, blogging about another favorite album. I'm in limbo right now waiting to head home tomorrow morning, whilst sitting around cloudy Savannah with basically nothing left to do. I've had it with my boyfriend for a little while (and by boyfriend, I mean Savannah. Not an actual person) and need a break. This little vacation is much needed. I'll be heading to NJ for almost two weeks, with a three day get-away to Burlington, VT in between. So since I have some spare time on my hands, I am here again bringing you another post about a favorite album.

The Pixies are just one of those bands that I can listen to constantly and always receive the same feelings over and over again when I hear them. They act like a time machine for me, bringing me back to different times in my life over the past five years. I started listening to the Pixies when I was a junior in high school which was one of the greatest years of my life. I'm not sure why, and I'm sure it wasn't as perfect as I remember it, but it's one of those years that remain golden in my head. Untouched and safe. After the age of 11, I have very few full years in my life that I can put in that category. I think that goes for everyone though since when you turn eleven or twelve, that's when shit starts to get real. You're not a little kid anymore with hearts and sparkles dancing around in your head 24/7. There is a switch that turns on, and that switch is called "Hello Person, Welcome to the Real World".

So, that's when the Pixies entered my life, along with most of the other bands I consider my favorites. It was a big music year for me, I suppose. It's when I discovered alternative bands from the late 80's, early 90's. I had always listened to bands like Brand New, Rilo Kiley, Bright Eyes, Le Tigre and Cursive mixed in with older stuff like Bob Dylan, Jimi Hendrix, Bob Marley & Janis Joplin. I never gave the 90's a chance, so that summer is when my music taste started to really develop. This is when I started loving, what I like to call it, "Cool Uncle Music".

Everyone has or knows that Cool Uncle. He was awesome in the late 80's and early 90's. He never married because "he doesn't believe in monogamy" (but is far too neurotic to get a wife, anyway). He remains cool even into his 40's and 50's. Still kind of pretentious, has a hip foreign girlfriend who plays guitar and follows a vegan diet. He likes to talk about seeing Sonic Youth's early shows and swears he asked Kim Gordon out one time in Providence in 1987 or something. He smokes the same cigarettes & drinks the same beer as he did when he was 22. Most importantly though, he tells all his awkward nieces and nephews about bands like Husker Du, Dinosaur Jr., Superchunk and of course the Pixies. You know him, or you've heard of him. He's the Cool Uncle. If I have style icons, I could definitely have a music icon and my music icon is the Cool Uncle figure. He's more of an idea or a dream than an actual physical person. But you know he exists somewhere. Or everywhere.

While I never had that type of uncle, I always knew he was out there somewhere. People I knew had those uncles, and I learned from their taste. So that summer I was introduced to bands like Pavement, Dinosaur Jr., The Replacements, Superdrag, Radiohead, Nada Surf & the Pixies. I distinctly remember listening to the album Doolittle all the time and falling in love with each and every song. It was different than everything that I was listening to previously.

That summer was the first summer all my friends & i had our licenses so there was a lot of driving around and getting drunk in parking lots behind our school. I have a specific memory (i don't know why i'm stating it like it happened 20 years ago, it was only like 5 or 6 years ago) being in the parking lot behind my school with my friend in her car screaming the lyrics to "Monkey Gone to Heaven" while drinking Fuze fruit juice with vodka. I was totally inexperienced when it came to drinking and that was the first night I ever got wasted sick. It was embarrassing to say the least. I remember everything from that night though strangely, even the Free People dress I was wearing and every single person that was there with me. But like many nights, it was started by singing (more like screaming) and listening to the Pixies.

I'll always listen to Doolittle and it will remind me of those nights. It was before everything changed. Senior year was awful. I acted out, everyone acted out, we all fell apart. I fell apart. I lost something that I had constant in my life for most of high school and I was totally depressed. Blah, blah who cares, blah, blah. Everyone has that angsty & sad year from their youth and that was mine. I didn't know what to do with myself for many reasons. Looking back, I don't find that abnormal. That's just something that happens to everyone and sometimes you act out in a not perfect manner when you're too young to know the right thing to do. I finally know what to do with myself, but that too will change. Everything does. It's okay, though.

This summer I rediscovered the Pixies. They were always playing on shuffle on my itunes or on different mix CDs through the years but I never paid the same attention to them as when I was first falling in love with them until now. It's like a re-launched love affair. I'm hearing different things in their songs and appreciating them with more mature ears. I'm no longer screaming their lyrics while irresponsibly drinking in Red Bank, NJ but I'm enjoying them with a totally clear & nostalgic brain.