Lists have become super-sized. No one is content with just 10 any more. It has to be 20, 50, 100. Blame it on my generation's belief that they don't have to choose. They can have it all. I am guilty of it, too, so this year I have resolved to make choices. My lists will be kept to ten regardless of how painful it will be to leave off some deserving choices. Heck, I won't even mention the runners-up. Ten and I'm sticking to it. We start with songs.
"Lake Michigan" by Rogue Wave
Album: Asleep at Heaven's Gate
I'm a sucker for a catchy indie pop song, and Rogue Wave's "Lake Michigan" lit up the pleasure center in my brain. It sounds like something the Shins, former labelmates of theirs, would have concocted. The lyrics are inscrutable, but it's apparently about the damage being done to Lake Michigan with references to global warming and "sky is burning." The thought that this is actually a message song almost detracts from it, not because I'm anti-environment but that it is incongruous with the sound and feel of the song. I can imagine that irony is in play here but it doesn't go far enough in its reach for it to work as an ironic statement. Rather I'd prefer to enjoy the song's cascading guitars, handclaps and layered harmonies as a visceral experience. Yes, I know, it's akin to liking the Mona Lisa because of the frame around it, but really, the frame this song hangs in is that great.