Katie is my favorite Twitter buddy, because she’s stunningly witty with a mere 140 characters and makes me laugh so hard the single-malt shoots out of my nose (yes, it stings). She also has fine taste in music, and regularly shows Brooklyn what-for. Here’s her brief tour of the records that mattered in the first decade of the millennium.
Picks after the jump.
If there is a signature aughts sound, and there isn’t, it’d be a kind of mashed-up, post-everything glamour. The ’00s, we’ll tell the kids, sounded like “Stronger.” They sounded like “SexyBack” and “Paper Planes” and “Feel Good Inc.” and “Take Me Out.” They tried to make us go to rehab, and they don’t love you like I love you, and 1, 2, 3, 4, and does that make me crazy? (Probably.) Take this as a shallow anthropology of the aughts — or a personal confession. Call it How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love Pop Music.
Eminem, The Eminem Show
I mean, his alter ego has an alter ego. Come on. The Eminem Show is Mathers’ effort to make us aware of his self-awareness, once and for all. It is also one of the wittiest, most exuberant, most maddening, and greatest mainstream hip-hop albums I can think of. I always loved it, but it took me the better part of this decade to admit it.
PJ Harvey, Stories from the City, Stories from the Sea
These songs sound how falling in love feels.
Queens of the Stone Age, Lullabies to Paralyze
I know I’m supposed to say Songs for the Deaf or Rated R. But Lullabies to Paralyze is one of my all-time favorites. Why? “Tangled up in Plaid,” that’s why. For starters.
If Songs for the Deaf was imagined as a road trip to the desert, tuning in forgotten radio stations and ingesting trucker drugs, Lullabies is what happens when they reach their hot, dark destination and begin the party in earnest. Mark Lanegan’s whiskeytone bewitches on the opener. Josh Homme’s coven of vaguely predatory burnouts beckons. I was under the spell of this record for two years straight without realizing it. It smolders.
Nonstop mental capers. I couldn’t even choose my 5 favorite songs. But if you don’t love “Raid,” “Shadows of Tomorrow” or “All Caps,” your ability to love is broken.
Radiohead, Kid A
I’m trying not to pick anybody else’s picks. And I’m trying to find better words than “special” and “important,” because I know how that sounds. But I can’t. This is The Record, it seems.
Katie Ehlers lives in Brooklyn and is into really obscure things you’ve probably never heard of, such as sandwiches and The Beatles. By day, she works in book publishing. By night, she also works in book publishing, but more drunkly. She plays bass and writes songs, but is neither proficient enough to work as a studio musician, nor attractive enough to form her own band. She is sorry about that. You have no idea.