The Smashing Pumpkins
One confession before I jump into this review: I have pretty much tuned out to anything Billy Corgan has done since he left the Smashing Pumpkins to release Mary Star of the Sea, with his new band at the time, Zwan. Why is this? Partially, it’s because the Zwan project lacked the punch and ingenuity of the Pumpkins, but also, everything I heard from Corgan through his music and through his words made me want to keep away. From all the anecdotes I have heard about the guy, it sounds like he is one of the more unlikable people on the planet. From all of the other original Smashing Pumpkins all hating him at this point, to relaunching the band with only one of the other original members, Jimmy Chamberlain, for what was pretty strictly a cash grab with the 2007 release of Zeitgeist, to various personal and critic anecdotes I have heard about his despicability in person, I have wanted little to do with the guy’s music.
Top Ten Thursday: Chi-Town Anthems
In keeping with our Chicago theme (due to my move there coming this weekend), we will be transitioning from yesterday’s list of songs BY Chicago to songs ABOUT Chicago. The Windy City has boasted its fair share of great artists, from Chicago blues legends Muddy Waters, Howlin’ Wolf, and Buddy Guy to more modern alternative/indie artists like The Smashing Pumpkins, Wilco, and Andrew Bird to an unbelievably strong hip hop scene including Kanye, Common, Lupe Fiasco, Rhymefest, Twista, and the one and only R. Kelly. While their quarterback’s a sad emo excuse for an athlete and their football team as an equally worthless franchise, there is greatness in this city and that’s why we bring you this list.
10. Common-“The Corner”
We love Kanye as much as any blog, but yes, this is a Chicago song’s list with two rap songs by someone not named by Kanye. He does, however, get production credit and a guest spot on the “The Corner”, a staple song about the Chicago Streets off of Common’s best effort, Be.
Because we at Little by Listen enjoy letting you know what the best of the best is, we have opted to force upon you our Top 20 albums of 2011. Constructing this list was much simpler than the top 20 songs, and thankfully didn’t end with me burning down Wes’ house or digging up Todd’s childhood pet and leaving it for him to find in his bed. In fact making this list was a little too easy, possibly because Todd had a cold nose while we were making it, and probably just wanted to get the process over with. Or maybe because Wes needed to tend to his beehives to collect some holiday honey (honey is coincidentally the name of Todd’s childhood pet btw). Please enjoy the list we have so meticulously crafted, and feel free to throw your entries in the comments so we can immediately dismiss you as philistines with no taste.