Since I’m fourteen pages deep into midterm essays with a flash fiction unit on the horizon, I figured it might be fun to try to distill my love for this week’s songs into one sentence each, which is something that should be easy-breezy, especially considering how deliberate, curt, economical, un-repetitive, and un-repetitive my writing tends to be—the “B” in Max B. Todd stands for Brevity, after all, and as a believer in nominative determinism, which I don’t actually think I’ve mentioned before on this blog, I strive to try and embody this in my every sentence, and that’s the Max Todd Dot Com (Max! Todd! Dot! Com!) guarantee, free of extraneous “bombastic”s and “driven”s and “punchy”s and “swelling”s and “earworm”s and any words I’d never, ever use more than once, because… sorry, hold on, I think I was going somewhere with this.
Well, it looks as though 2022 has already slipped through my fingers, because this post is already so last year. Sorry about that—I try to prioritize making a post the best it can be over its timing, but I think my philosophy should probably be closer to “quality before quantity, except after consistency,” because the time for resolutions has already wrapped.
Speaking of Wrapped, wrapping season has long since passed over at Spotify. Even their indie, small-town competitor, Apple Music, has its own original spin on this New Year’s stats sheet with Apple Replay. Aw, cute! Keep it up with these fresh ideas, Tim! As an Apple Music user myself (🚩)—and someone who can’t shut up about music, to boot—I’m always hit with that sweet, sweet, social media FOMO every time December rolls around, and I was sheepishly excited that Apple was finally providing their own option for seeing my year in music. What I walked away with, however, was largely disappointing—Apple Replay nails everything Spotify Wrapped has already done, down to its cheugy corporate-hip lingo, and that means it also nails Wrapped’s structural flaws.
Look, I know this is probably the last thing worth getting militant about, and to tell you the truth, my feelings are nowhere near that strong about this. Still, I figured now was as good an opportunity as any to enter my own dark horse into the streaming music recap race (wrolls wright off the tongue. Wrrecap. Wrrrapped. Wrrrreplay)—a real homegrown replay/wrapped situation. So, as 2022 comes to a close (four days into 2023), let’s take a look back at the music that defined my year, and that probably didn’t define yours, but here you are, reading about it, so it’s no skin off my back. Don’t think about it too much.
Buckle up, kids, I’m airing out all of my flammable takes while we’re still in holiday limbo so I can start this new year pure and angelic. The puffy, white, cartoon gloves are off, and honestly, they’re not going back on, because that character design harkens back to blackface performances. Did you know that? Yea. I just shotgun sprayed your childhood, and I’m not even sorry for it. That’s right, yea, and this is just the beginning. Twelve-thirty, no mercy.
Here we are, and without even touching twitter! Bet I’m missing out on a good time over there, though. I almost didn’t think I’d make it to songs this week, but after last week’s janky graphic design mishap (Song of the Week? Is this multiple choice?), my vanity needed a win. Don’t even bother telling me if there’s any typos in this one, it’s definitely a creative decision.
Kiddos, folks, citizens: it is the listening time now. You must listen to me and my interests. You must. You feel compelled by my words, because you are the weak-minded sheep and I am the corgi at your heels. Okay, song time. Here are the songs. You like the songs. Dance to the songs! Read about the songs! Are you having fun? Are you having fun yet? Are you?
I’ll be the first to admit I’m too lazy for manifestos, but I figure it’s a good idea to give some context as to what these weekly updates are all about (but I’m not gonna pretend I invented weekly songs or movies—actually, I sorta ripped off A Song A Day when I started making these back in the day. I’d link their website, but I’m fairly certain it was shut down a while ago. We are well into digression territory here… maybe this should be a footnote). Since the new year began in 2018, I’ve been creating lists of five songs in Instagram and Snapchat story format and posting them weekly. In the beginning, it was mostly another creative outlet that allowed me to put my own interests out there— back then, I was still in high school, and was fairly convinced that sharing my music with my friends was on par with cropdusting in an airplane cabin. Since then, I’m glad to say I’ve found many people beyond my lovely family (who I owe my music taste to) who are excited to exchange songs, and they’ve propelled this little ritual into something that provides structure in my life through highs and lows— perhaps a bit too much structure. If you know me, you know I rarely drink, and I certainly don’t in the house, because if you know me, then you also know I have less impulse control than a toddler in a shock collar. These days, I’m trying to take a similar approach to social media management, but I’d be remiss to sacrifice this tradition— in fact, one of my main motivations for raising this blog from the grave was to give these a new home. I hope they bring you the same peace and structure as they do for me.
Alright, so maybe I’m too lazy to actively make a manifesto, but too wordy to not accidentally vomit one out. I guess that might be worth getting used to if you want to survive around these parts.
And you know what’s cool about posting this with space for extra words? All you can do is watch as I crack my knuckles in painstaking sequence and get ready to wax poetic about ALL FIVE SONGS.