Double Take features a top ten track from the Hype Machine and a top ten track from the iTunes singles charts – both unknown and unheard by myself. I review them, grade them, and determine if they pass muster. Did I mention these tracks are selected specifically because they encompass genres that I am ignorant of, or generally avoid? Well, there’s that too. All tracks reviewed also require a freely available MP3 or Soundcloud embed.
Double Take is meant to be a fun interlude in the seriousness of music blogging…if blogging can be called serious. I tackle songs I would never otherwise give a second thought, or delve into genres where I’d be better off sticking my own foot in my mouth than try to talk intelligently about them. Read and listen responsibly. Enjoy!
Consequence – “Cut That Out” from Good Music Remixed & Unreleased Mixtape – Ranked #9 on Hype Machine
Are you familiar with Queens rapper Consequence? I’m only vaguely so. The thing I remember him most for is his inclusion on Kanye West’s “Spaceship” on The College Dropout in 2004. My musical tastes were still budding at the time and this was my favorite album that year. That’s no real surprise, I’m sure lots of folks proclaimed that. There were other reasons for me.
I was working at a rather large home improvement chain at the time; you might recognize them for having their own sponsored speedway and sponsoring the most successful NASCAR driver over the past seven or eight years. I worked on the lumber yard as a fill in while a transition was taking place from an older store to a newer store. My job was to load all the contractors and customers who purchased lumber, shingles, concrete, etc.
We were severely short staffed, I was new, and I was weak. Carrying 12′ 4×4’s and 92 lb bags of concrete weren’t exactly strong suits of mine, and the huge influx of customers due to everything being placed on clearance in order to sell it out for the move to the new store created a bit of a shitstorm. Being 18 years old, I wasn’t very enamored with all this heavy lifting. Kanye West’s “Spaceship (feat. GLC & Consequence) became my jam. Every day I dreaded going into that warehouse, and every day I listened to Consequence and co rap about having the same issues and felt a little better.
This is really the first track I’ve heard with Consequence on it since then. “Cut That Out” was lost on the cutting room floor of the Kanye West presents GOOD Music: Cruel Summer mixtape last year. It’s a sad exclusion, because this track has a definite old school vibe. I’m no hip-hop, but there’s something about Consequence’s voice that really speaks to me. It’s not like you’re gonna hear it and be all about him, but it’s relaxing and you kind of meld with it through the speakers.
That said, this is also not really all that catchy or remarkable either. Not sure how this got so far up on the Hype Machine. I’m gonna remain neutral out of deference to Consquence’s work on “Spaceship”.
Imagine Dragons – “Radioactive” from Night Visions – #9 on iTunes top singles chart.
So THAT’s what that song is called. I’ve heard this track at least fifty times in the past month on TV and in the car, at Nashville Predators games or on their telecasts, on other sports broadcasts, etc…it’s pretty damn ubiquitous. I never knew who it was or even if it was a new song. Figures I’d encounter it this way.
It’s actually not the worst song ever, and for tracks with mass appeal and commercial use like this one has seen it sure beats the hell out of “Bad Day”. This is basically just an anthemic banger – one of those songs you put on to get pumped up or belt at the top of your lungs in the car. It’s far from my favorite, but it’s alright.
I’ll also remain neutral on this track – no pass or fail. I don’t like or dislike it enough to go either way so we have to call this a win for iTunes this week, don’t we? After all, if it’s not annoying and it’s gracing the top of the charts, there’s still hope!