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Rockin' Mower: Metal Blade edition
2005-04-17 20:37
by Scott Long
Notes:
Scott Long is now blogging at NSFWsports.com.
Will Carroll can still be found at Baseball Prospectus.

Along with baseball season starting, another thing that denotes Winter is over in the Midwest is getting the lawn mower out. Now, I'm not a handy guy and don't really like doing much in regards to landscaping, but I've always like mowing my yard. On a nice day, it gives me a reason to catch some rays and listen to some tunes. In a new feature to The Juice Blog, I will list the songs I listen to on my MP3 player (Creative Nomad Jukebox), while pushing my green Yard Man on my half acre.

Now many of you might think is this guy really going to write about this on a regular basis? Yep. I figure if former Florida Senator and 2004 Presidential nominee Bob Graham kept a daily diary of his life, including what he ate every day, I could indulge the world in what my MP3 player's random button would offer. To kick this experiment off, I chose the Metal genre, as I like to rock out when pushing the grass cutting sled.

74 Jailbreak- AC/DC- Good start. By the way, I split my Bon Scott years from my Brian Johnson years, as the two shouldn't not be intermixed. It's kind of like keeping your mashed potatoes away from your cranberry salad. They are both good, but when they blend together, they don't taste right.

2 Minutes to Midnight- Iron Maiden- Ok, if you are listening to a lot of Maiden, but not worthy of being on a mix tape. I should take the genre off this song, so if I hit Metal again, I won't have to listen to this.

Snortin Whiskey, Drinking Cocaine- Pat Travers Band- Many social critics lament the depravity of our current society. Well I haven't heard a recent song on radio with a title like this one. Eric Clapton sang sweetly about "Cocaine", well where is Clay Aiken's "Crank"? (For new lurkers, I'm talking about the drug, not his so-called Milton Berle-like appendage.)

Round and Round- Ratt- Never cared much for this band, but this one was is pretty catchy. The video featured Milton Berle, who was known as having the biggest schlong in the history of entertainment. Can you imagine the commotion Uncle Milty would have caused if he would have worn some 80's metal spandex. Youch.

All Night Long- Rainbow- This was done during the in-between time of Ronnie James Dio and Joe Lynn Turner. This is one of their better songs, discussing the life of picking up barely of age groupies from the stage. "Don't know bout' your brains, but you look alright." Metal misogyny at it's best.""

Bringin' On the Heartbreak- Def Leppard- Their first "hit" song, but unfortunately this is from their Greatest Hits CD, so it's a remake they did which has the symphonic drum sound which takes some of the edge off it.

Inject the Venom- AC/DC- "No mercy for the bad if they want it! No mercy for the bad if they plead!" From the "For Those About To Rock" release, this song reminds me of cranking my boombox in the school bus on the way to a High School football game. As one of the captains, I had control (kind of like Sammy Sosa) so we listened to AC/DC or Ozzy before the game and on the trip back, it was mellow out time, Boston or Kansas. Why has no one contacted me to write the sequel to "Dazed and Confused". Richard Linklater, give me a ring.

Bad Seed- Metallica- I'm not a Metallica purist, which is why I like their new stuff as much as their old work, as I appreciate how tight and well-produced their sound is. Metallica is really good mowing music, but I'm afraid I might have scared some of the younger kids in the neighborhood with my demonic head shaking, while pushing the gas powered blade cutting beast. "Ch-ch-ch-choking on a bad seed".

Big City Nights- Scorpions- This was the period when the German Spinal Tap was hitting big and to be honest this song doesn't hold up that well, as it has too much of a pop sheen.

Blackout- Scorpions- Now for a double shot, it's a Kraut Metal Block party! Weird how you can put your MP3 player on random and two songs from the same artist can go back to back. This tune was from the same titled album and it was the best record they ever released.

Bloodstone- Judas Priest- I was wondering when the Priest was going to hit my ears. I wouldn't rate this song as one of their best, but this is the price you sometimes pay for hitting the random button. Despite this, I find that my mowing has sped up listening to Halford and the twin-guitar attack.

Lay It on the Line- Triumph- Sounding like Rush, if they weren't bright enough to get Ayn Rand, this Canadian trio was part of the loudest concert I ever went to. For 3 days after, I couldn't get the ringing out of my head, because of them and their opening act, Molly Hatchett.

The Last in Line- Dio- Weird how this song came up right after a similarly titled cut. Have we found out one of the mysteries of how the MP3 random selector works? Inch for inch, the best metal singer of all-time, even though his lyrics are ridiculous.

Sweet Leaf- Black Sabbath- From the diseased lung cough at the beginning, this just sounds dirty and evil, which no Metal band has ever quite duplicated. Interesting that earlier on this list, I had Metallica's Bad Seed, which has a similar cough which I'm guessing was done as a tribute.

Bring Your Daughter to Slaughter- Iron Maiden- I'm starting to think only about 5 songs of Maiden would still sound good to me, as this song is ridiculous. 30 seconds in I'm stopping the mower, so I can fast forward to my next selection.

Say What You Will- Fastway- Underrated 80's metal band, featured a guitarist from Motorhead and a singer who must be one kick-ass Robert Plant kareoke participant.

So This is Love- Van Halen- Considering how many Halen tunes I have, I'm surprised it took so long for me to hear one. This song was rarely played on the radio, but was in heavy rotation on early MTV. I remember trying to emulate the aerial jump into the splits that Diamond Dave would do in this video. I would jump off the 3rd riser in our high school gym right before basketball practice. Considering this was pre-fab 5 days, it's surprising the grapes didn't flap out the sides of my shorts.

Have a Drink on Me- AC/DC- Was there anything in more bad taste than writing about getting drunk, on the first album after their original singer's alcohol related death? I think you should get bonus metal points for that. I mean where was The Mamas and Papas opus to ham sandwiches for Mama Cass?

Standing on Top- HSAS (with Sammy Hagar)- A one-shot, sorta supergroup, which recorded a highly overdubbed live album containing the heaviest music Hagar has ever done. This was before he started wanting to be Steve Perry.

Knockin' Round Your Backdoor- Deep Purple- This was part of an 80's comeback for the band and it rocks as hard as anything they ever did. Also the future title of the autobiography of Jeff Stryker.

Little Guitars- Van Halen- Talk about being in the groove, this songs just kicks ass. Like most of Roth's lyrics, I have very little understanding of what he's talking about, but then I have no idea what Michael Stipe was mumbling on Murmur, but it still was great. "Senorita, if you need a friend, I'm in love with you."

Live Wire- Motley Crue- Just to give you an idea of how big of a metal head I was when I was in high school, I owned the Crue debut album not long after it came out, even though most people had no idea who they were until their second release, "Shout at the Devil". If you haven't heard the album, "Too Fast For Love" was a mix of metal, glam, and punk, which holds up better than anything else they released afterwards.

Heaven and Hell- Black Sabbath- You could do a 6 degrees of Kevin Bacon game with Ronnie James Dio and metal bands and probably skip 3 of the steps, as he was in Sabbath, Rainbow, and Dio. Once again Dio sings about the monarchy and a few other things that only Tenacious D can understand.

Well, considering this is the Lord's day, I figure I should take a break from all the metal satan worship, so so I flipped over to some Kings X to finish my yard.

(Keep an eye out for the next edition of Rockin' Mower, as I chop some turf to 80's New Wave.)

Comments
2005-04-18 00:21:26
1.   Cliff Corcoran
Wow, some great stuff! But you sell the Maiden short, that or you're lacking a sense of humor about your metal.

I also have to disagree with you about Too Fast For Love. It's okay, but the best Crue album is Shout at the Devil. Girls, Girls, Girls gets second place, but falls short because it's not fully realized. Yes I just wrote that about a Motely Crue album. Yes I'm insane.

I used to rake leaves to Skid Row's debut and Kiss's Hot In The Shade. I'm not proud of either, though they have their moments for different reasons, but then again, this was years ago.

" . . . with a bullet in his back!"

2005-04-18 06:28:03
2.   Smed
Wow, I don't have a lot of those genred metal, especially Triumph. Triumph is like Rush, except Canadian (hey...wait....)

Fastway's second album is laughably awful. The first one had some great riffage though.

I mow the lawn best to "Stay Clean" by Motorhead as a starter to my playlist!

2005-04-18 07:17:10
3.   Tom
All of those songs also work as your theme music as a wrestler or closer coming out of the bullpen.

After much thought, I decided that, were I a closer, my theme music would be Supernaut by Black Sabbath.

2005-04-18 07:36:54
4.   Cliff Corcoran
Ooh, closer music. How about "Turn Out The Lights" by Tesla. Not so tough, but "the party's over for you!"
2005-04-18 07:52:09
5.   Loogy
23 songs x 4 minutes each (conservative estimate) = about an hour and a half.

How big a yard to do you have? Rhode Island?

2005-04-18 08:09:33
6.   Ggregg
Back in my lawnmowing days, there were no MP3 players... it was all Walkman cassettes. So my lawnmowing musical experiences were generally album-oriented.

My lawn-related lo-fi walkman favorites (as best I can remember):

The Who: Live at Leeds (complete album)
I've always considered to be the very first heavy metal album. It was of particular interest to me as a budding hard rock guitar player, since it was all guitar in one ear and all bass in the other, an even 50-50 stereo split, and you could pick out pretty well exactly what was going on, if you were so inclined (I was).

Iron Maiden: The Number of the Beast (entire album)
Really the only Maiden I ever cared much for. The earlier stuff was to simplistic, the later stuff too slick.

Rush: 2112 (entire album)
Rush didn't sound this good again until last year's "Feedback", which I recommend for mowing, raking, snow-shovelling or PHP programming.

Cheap Trick: Live at Budokhan (sp?)
Full-on drumming by Bun E. Carlos definitely helped get the lawn mowed faster. I saw thes guys at Chicagofest sometime in the early 80's and had sucha good time that I've always had a soft spot for them, even if the songs are all really pretty stupid.

Meatloaf: Paradise by the Dashboard Light
I know, I know, not really metal, and I didn't have the album either (this was on a mix tape someone gave me). Great summer song though, also a good 8 minutes long so you could do a fair stretch of yard with just this song.

Living Color: Time's Up (entire album)
I think I listened to this about the time I mowed my very last lawn (around 1989). A bit on the slick side, but raw & ballsy just the same.

2005-04-18 08:16:46
7.   Scott Long
Answers to a couple of posts.

Yes, I have a big yard, as I mentioned in my piece, I have a half acre of land.

Tom- The idea of your own personal music choice if you were a closer is a GREAT topic subject. I plan on using your idea in the next couple of weeks, with you getting credit of course, so let's wait on that one until it gets it's own separate post.

2005-04-18 09:27:56
8.   Tom
I'm glad you like the topic. May I suggest a run through of current closers and their music as an intro? I don't know them all but:

Hell's Bells-- Hoffman (my personal favorite intro)

Enter Sandman-- Mo Rivera.

Mother-- Keith Foulke.

Mr. Roboto-- Shingo. "Domo arigato, Mr. Takasu"

I may have made that last one up, but, if I did, it should be one, given Styx's unfortunate connection to Chicago. Of course, the worse band from Chicago bears its name. That is irony for you.

Okay, now I will save the topic for another day.

2005-04-18 11:26:52
9.   Dan Lucero
I used to have a whole CD of songs that were either used by closers or should have been. Got me good and amped to pitch back in high school.

I eagerly await further exploration of this topic.

2005-04-18 12:53:07
10.   Cliff Corcoran
Wrestler entry music is a good one too. One of the first things I downloaded when file sharing started was Rick Derringer's "Real American" - Hulk Hogan's entry music. I also remember some '80s tag team (Axe and Smash or something?) having a killer riff they entered to that I used to play in my early guitar days. Then there was Junkyard Dog and "Another One Bites the Dust" - classic stuff.

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