Thursday, March 29, 2012

Favorite First Lines

I'm listening to Wilco's über-classic album Yankee Hotel Foxtrot, which I rank--as many others do as well, I'm sure--as THE best album of the decade spanning 2001-2010, whatever it's called. (The aughts? The 2000s? The single digits? Who cares...)

Anyway, what strikes me today is how simply AWESOME and perfectly memorable the very first line of that record is. "I am an American aquarium drinker..." in my opinion, is one of the most memorable opening lines in the history of music. It got me to thinking: in terms of first lines of albums--not just opening lines of songs, but of ALBUMS (which eliminates some fantastic individual songs, naturally)--what are some of the more amazing opening lines permanently tattooed on my brain? Here're a few off the top of my head:

Wilco - Yankee Hotel Foxtrot :: I am an American aquarium drinker, I assassin down the avenue / I'm hiding out in the big city blinking, what was I thinking when I let go of you?

Neutral Milk Hotel - In the Aeroplane Over the Sea :: When you were young, you were the king of carrot flowers

Flaming Lips - Yoshimi Battles the Pink Robots :: I thought I was smart, I thought I was right / I thought it better not to fight / I thought there was a virtue in always being cool

Bob Dylan - Highway 61 Revisited :: Once upon a time you dressed so fine / Threw the bums a dime in your prime / Didn't you?

Modest Mouse - The Moon and Antarctica :: Everything that keeps me together is falling apart / I've got this thing that I consider my only art of fucking people over

Nirvana - In Utero :: Teenage angst has paid off well / Now I'm bored and old

The Beatles - Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club :: It was 20 years ago today...

Radiohead - OK Computer :: In the next world war, a jack-knifed juggernaut / I am born again

NWA - Straight Outta Compton :: You are now about to witness the strength of street knowledge

Spiritualized - Ladies & Gentlemen We Are Floating in Space :: Ladies and gentlemen, we are floating in space

Van Morrison - Astral Weeks :: If I ventured in the slipstream / Between the viaducts of your dream / Where immobile steel rims crack / And the ditch in the back roads stop / Could you find me?

Weezer - The Blue Album :: My name is Jonas, I'm carrying the wheel / Thanks for all you've shown us, this is how we feel

1 comment:

yale said...

"the car is on fire, and there's no driver at the wheel
and the sewers are all muddied with a thousand, lonely suicides
and a dark wind blows..."
GY!BE - F#A#

"After years of waiting, nothing came..."
Radiohead - Amnesiac

"Cause it's a bittersweet symphony, this life
Trying to make ends meet
You're a slave to money then you die"
The Verve - Urban Hymns

"You think you gotta keep me iced, you don't"
Jennifer Lopez - J.Lo

"I don't have to sell my soul, he's already in me"
The Stone Roses - The Stone Roses