I have a 32 GB iPhone 4 on Verizon, which I bought with my own money after losing my previous phone in a cab. Am I a hypocrite? A little bit, probably. But using my phone makes me absolutely miserable — when it’s not being a whizzy, snappy wonderland of music and me not getting lost.
In any case, it is thus: There is 17.67 GB of music on my phone, which amounts to 10,006 minutes of music. It’s here that I should note I work from home, and have my entire iTunes that I listen to. And when I’m walking the dogs, I listen to podcasts. So, I usually only listen to music at the gym and when I’m going out. From where I live, the average travel time for going out seems to be about forty minutes, which means I can go out 125 times (there and back) and not hear the same song twice. I go out about .5 times per week. Following my normal schedule, I can go out for about 4.8 years, then, and have a different musical experience each time.
I change the music on my iPhone on, like, a daily basis.
There’s a little madness in how I use my phone for music. I think that every time I slide to unlock, click “Music”, and scroll through a vast list to, inevitably, settle on listening to Watch The Throne, Section 80, or Van Halen. To make sense of all this, to maybe understand myself better, I decided to list each album on my phone and then try to determine why it’s there.
Aesthetica by Liturgy
This album’s been kicking around my awareness since it came out. I think it got BNM’d, and people have talked about it online, and HHH has kept in the blog cycle pretty well. The specific reason it’s back on my phone is this post by Andrew Tsks.
After Hours (Mixed By Nick Catchdubs) by Jackie Chain
I heard about this, but didn’t seek it out until Brandon Soderberg repped it pretty hard on his newly Spun No Trivia blog.
Airwalker by Jeremy Jay
I covered a Jeremy Jay concert a few weeks ago. Before the show I wanted to re-familiarize myself with his earlier work. I am a big fan of Jay’s, but I don’t find much occasion to listen to much of his work other than Slowdance, which I think is classic album. I don’t see why it’s not more popular, but I have my theories.
All Eyez On Me by 2Pac
So, I was reading One More Robot’s latest issue, which is dedicated to 90s hip-hop. (Incidentally, I contributed a review of Yelawolf in it.) The first essay is about 2Pac, and it sort of made me want to reconsider him. Overall, yeah, this is not a bad album. I’m not sure why, but when I was younger I had a pretty strong antipathy for his music. It must have been that mile-wide contrarian streak that I’m still trying to erase.
All I Want Is You by Miguel
This is a great album. But I have it on my phone because I was going to write about the Wale/Miguel show at Irving Plaza a few weeks ago. I ended up getting a free entrance, but couldn’t make it. Please don’t tell Wale’s people.
Animal Joy by Shearwater
One of the very first album reviews I’ve ever written was about Shearwater’s The Golden Archipelago. I did not like it at first. Its sounds were all woody, kiwi signifiers. But after listening to it quite a bit, I grew to love its sweep. I’m afraid I have not listened to Animal Joy yet, but I expect I’ll like it if I have the patience.
The Appeal: Georgia’s Most Wanted by Gucci Mane
After Gucci released whatever his 2012 mixtape was, I got into a big nostalgia kick and put on a bunch of his music. I actually really like this album. I’m sort of on an island, but I think “Grown Man” is one of his very best songs. It’s so affecting — and catchy.
Appetite for Destruction by Guns N’ Roses
As you will see, I’ve been listening to a lot of Van Halen. Back when I was making fine picture frames in Santa Fe, I had one miraculous, epiphantic work day where this album made complete and perfect sense to me. Since that day, I was a true Guns N’ Roses fan. Like, a genuine, non-ironic one. Anyway, I wanted to compare the feelings I got from Van Halen to the ones I got from GNR, but I haven’t had a chance to listen yet.
Arm’s Way by Islands
I pitched a review of the latest Islands album, so I put all their older albums on my phone just in case.
Astronaut Status by Future
I was trying to ‘get’ Future.
The B. Coming by Beanie Sigel
Back when I was doing One Week // One Band on Kanye West, I was doing some research and kept coming up with Beanie Sigel. Now, I am not an old-school hip-hop fan by any means, so I was pretty unfamiliar with his work. Someone on Twitter, Soderberg maybe, recommended this album as a good starting point. I haven’t listened to it yet, though.
Bachelor No. 2, or the Last Remains of the Dodo (MFSL UDSACD 2025) by Aimee Mann
I think, as shallow as this sounds, seeing Mann on Portlandia and catching her hot, charismatic vibe really opened up her music for me. I don’t know. She has a great sense of humor, and sonically, her music is just wonderful. I’ve listened to “Driving Sideways” on one-track repeat for hours at a time.
Back $ellin Crack by Squadda B
Love my cloud rap. Not as sold on this one.
Best Of Black Hippy by Black Hippy
After it finally hit me that Kendrick Lamar is the best rapper alive, I went back and tracked down his and his crew’s old releases. They’re all to a man talented. This collection is a treat.
Best Of Blackland by Spaceghostpurrp
I can finally spell Spaceghost’s moniker right! Oh, let’s see. I wrote a review of God of Black, Vol. 1, and I put all his older stuff on my phone to just sort of take in his atmosphere. This is OK, but I actually started to enjoy his weirder early stuff.
The Black Album by Jay-Z
Well, this is just a good album.
Black Friday by Jay Rock
Jay Rock is a member of Black Hippy. (See above.) This is a pretty good album.
Blackberry Ku$h by Main Attrakionz
See, here’s my cloud rap. I haven’t listened to that new EP, yet, because I have some stupid aversion to streaming things. But I Oakland’s own don’t keep moving toward the Squadda B Back Selling Crack direction. But they probably also figure, if Rocky got signed…
Blackberry Ku$h Bonus Disc by Main Attrakionz
Blackland Radio 66.6 1991 by Spageghostpurrp
See above. Also, I sort of like this release a lot more than I did a year ago. It’s lo-fi-ness, which really bothered me at first, now seems more atmospheric and intentional than anything else.
Blood Mountain by Mastodon
This is a good album, but I think I tend to overrate how much I really care for Mastodon. For instance, they’re sort of like Metallica 2.0, maybe? By which I mean, lots of strong imagery and good musicianship. More musical than Liturgy, which I know doesn’t strictly share a genre. But still, I’d rather listen to something more focused (like a Liturgy) than, maybe, rock-on-speedballs. At least, rock like this. Maybe I should listen more to it, since now that I’m thinking about my memories of it, it’s not very boring.
Blu Tops by Cam’ron, Vado, McKenzie Eddy
A web EP, pretty fly, dub-step-boom-bap. I’m writing something about this, but it might be a bit more historical in scope. It’s five tracks and definitely worth a download.
Blue Dream & Lean by Juicy J
Yeah, I thought Juicy J 3.0 was uninteresting. And my friends tried to convince me he wasn’t. And, yeah, he is. But I guess you can’t blame a guy for signing up for that Wiz Khalifa money, but you can for begging guest verses from Kreayshawn.
The Blueprint by Jay-Z
This is… the best Jay-Z album? My favorite.
The Blueprint 2: The Gift & The Curse by Jay-Z
Not sure why this is on there. Maybe because Kanye produced a few of the beats. This album is a good argument against the impulse to have mostly only complete albums in your iTunes.
The Blueprint 3 by Jay-Z
I wonder if anyone’s written a decent study of Vol. 1-3 versus Blueprints 1-3? I call that.
Born To Die by Lana Del Rey
Remember when the internet hopped in a time machine and warped to a point when they really cared about authenticity? I was going to try to write something about this. I should probably delete it. I’ll keep that four-song EP, though, because that’s actually really good.
The Boy With the Arab Strap by Belle & Sebastian
I don’t think I’ve ever listened to this all the way through is why this is on here. I’ve listened to the first two albums and the first disc of Push The Barman like a million times, and I’ve listened to some of the mid-to-late 00s albums quite a bit. I missed the middle part of their work, somehow. Not sure if I’m missing anything, though.
Boys And Girls In America by The Hold Steady
I always think I’m going to listen to this at the gym, and then by the time “First Night” comes on, I lose that urge.
Thus concludes Ae to Bo.