Published Sep 03, 2008While the '80s have been making a comeback for years, it's time to make room for the '90s. Lumberjack flannel has already established itself in hipster circles, with more colours than ever, which means grunge never actually died. Nick Catchdubs noticed the resurgence and compiled Radio Friendly Unit Shifter, a well chosen selection of greatness from the decade that gave us Lollapalooza, "Generation X," and body piercing, while allowing everyone to abuse the scapegoat that was "alternative," which could describe any kind of music outside of the mainstream... that is until it all became mainstream.
Some observations about Radio Friendly Unit Shifter:
1. Dinosaur Jr.'s "Start Choppin'" actually sounds better with the looped beat from Beck's "Beercan." It leaves me wondering why no one ever remixed J. Mascis.
2. I still cringe when I hear Meat Puppets' "Backwater," Green Day's "Longview," "Foo Fighters' "I'll Stick Around" and anything by the Toadies, Everclear and Sublime.
3. How the hell did Primus actually sell records and headline a Lollapalooza?
4. Tripping Daisy, Harvey Danger and King Missile all deserved Primus's success.
5. There is no Pearl Jam, which really damages the relevance of such a mix. That said, Pearl Jam were boring and would only ruin the fun if they were invited to this party.
6. The nicely inserted '90s samples like Stimpy's favourite songs and Billy Corgan's Simpsons cameo on the "Homerpalooza" episode where he greets Homer with "Hey Cannoball," which just so happens to follow the Breeders' "Cannonball." Funny that.
7. Closing the whole thing off with a hidden track, a hidden track that just so happens to be a Jerky Boys skit featuring Sol Rosenberg. Timeless.
8. Soundgarden's "Outshined" is the most underrated song of the '90s, especially when it has Olaf singing "Beserker" from Clerks mashed into it.
9. In this context, rap can only survive if grouped together.
10. For controversy's sake, "Cop Killer" should have replaced "There Goes the Neighborhood," just to see if such a thing is still controversial these days. And Rage Against the Machine should have come in right when Harvey Danger's "Flagpole Sitta" says, "I wanna publish zines and rage against machines." Just sayin'...
11. Hearing the awesome "El Scorcho" makes it harder to accept that Weezer are pathetic, aged nerds who are writing music that acts as an inside joke that none of their original fans get.
Anywho, here's Mr. Catchdubs' own explanation for the mix:
My good friend Mr. Ducker isnt a DJ, but he always wanted to make an ultimate 90s tape, something that brought a mixshow vibe to alt nation sounds. When he asked me to get down with his dream and collaborate, we delved deep into our middle and high school record collections (and used CD bargain bins) and brainstormed new ways to present all the alternative music we grew up on. We were inspired by DJ Spinbads impossibly fun 80s pop mixes: big hits next to unexpected favorites with lots of movie dialogue and interludes for jokes, all smashed up in a dance party megamixxx. Picking from hundreds of beloved Buzz Bin jams was easier said than done (sorry Superdrag, youll make Vol. 2!), but with the Mishka crews annual trip to Magic in Las Vegas giving us an actual deadline, we finally finished this badmotorfinger as a giveaway CD for their new season. Even with double digit-old tunes, Radio Friendly Unit Shifter feels right on time, connecting the dots between Sonic Youth breakbeats, weeded Lollapalooza rap, gloriously fuzzed-out one hit wonders and much more. No irony, no empty nostalgia, just a lot of music we love that shaped what we do today. They used to play King Missile on the radio! In America! Download and enjoy. - Nick Catchdubs
1. L7 "Pretend Were Dead"
2. Sonic Youth "100%"
3. Folk Implosion "Natural One"
4. King Missile "Detachable Penis"
5. Beck "Beercan"
6. Dinosaur Jr "Start Choppin"
7. Meat Puppets "Backwater"
8. Pavement "Cut Your Hair"
9. Nirvana "Sliver"
10. Foo Fighters "Ill Stick Around"
11. Porno For Pyros "Tahitian Moon"
12. Temple Of The Dog "Hunger Strike"
13. Tripping Daisy "I Got A Girl"
14. Primus "Wynona's Big Brown Beaver"
15. Body Count "There Goes The Neighborhood"
16. Offspring "Come Out And Play"
17. Rancid "Roots Radicals"
18. Supergrass "Caught By The Fuzz"
19. Weezer "El Scorcho"
20. Green Day "Longview"
21. Harvey Danger "Flagpole Sitta"
22. Rage Against The Machine "Bulls On Parade"
23. Bjork "Army Of Me"
24. Soundgarden "Outshined"
25. Red Hot Chili Peppers "Suck My Kiss"
26. Tribe Called Quest "Oh My God (Live @ The Tibetan Freedom Concert)"
27. Cypress Hill "How I Could Just Kill A Man (Live @ Woodstock 94)"
28. House Of Pain "Shamrocks and Shennanigans"
29. Cibo Matto "Know Your Chicken"
30. Breeders "Cannonball"
31. Smashing Pumpkins "Today"
32. Butthole Surfers "Pepper"
33. Sublime "Doin Time"
34. Soul Coughing "Super Bon Bon"
35. Faith No More "A Small Victory"
36. MC 900 Foot Jesus "If I Only Had A Brain"
37. Everclear "You Make Me Feel Like A Whore"
38. Toadies "Possum Kingdom"