I have a secret favorite band.
They’re not only a secret because I never talk about them publicly. They’re also a secret because I don’t know a damn thing about them. I don’t know who they are, what they look like, why they’re a band, what their politics are, or when they’re putting their next album out. I’ve never seen them on tour and never watched a video of them. I don’t even know if they play live!
All I know is I love every song they have ever released.
It is highly unusual for me to fall madly in love with something and not want to hoover up every single facet of its existence. You’ve seen the name of this site, right? That’s what the “Crushing” part has always been about – what I’m crushing on, and what’s crushing me. When I have something crushing, I want perfect 100% knowledge of its complete breadth and depth.
Except this one band.
I don’t know anything about them, but I can tell you exactly how I found out about them.
Their song “Underdog (Save Me)” was on the Q Magazine’s “Q Best of 2001” sampler CD that came with their end of year issue that December. I almost certainly bought it at an airport magazine stand en route to stay at my grandmother’s condo in Florida for the holidays. That was pre-iTunes, so I probably listened to it once or twice on my CD Walkman and then shelved it’s paper sleeve alongside the rest of my compilation CDs and promptly forgot it existed.
Then, in 2003, iTunes came to Windows and I spent a month converting my massive CD collection to MP3, including that Q sampler on November 8th, 2003. And then I didn’t listen to it for another year, until I bought my first iPod for my solo trip to California to hang out with Laura and Sara.
Clearly I was working my way through a playlist of unheard songs while on my trip, because several other tunes from that sampler have their first (and only) plays in that period. And then, the very day I returned to Philly, I added two Turin Brakes records to my collection. I might’ve even bought them at the historic Amoeba Music in Los Angeles!
Why? What was so special about “Underdog (Save Me)” that made me so eager to hear more of this band?
I can tell exactly why: they were the first new band I ever heard that entirely reminded me of myself. [Read more…] about Music Monday: “Underdog (Save Me)” – Turin Brakes