yahoo’s “25 best ‘best of’ albums”: zeitgeist-defining curio or sign of the apocalypse?

Remember how great they were? *Sigh* . . .

. . . So Yahoo (will not, will NOT append the “!” A little dignity, please, is all the Evil asks. Unless you’re going to shoot the moon and go balls-out with “!!!” . . . yes. That’s infinitely better: Yahoo!!!) apparently runs a feature called the “List Of The Day”—four words that, in order, send a shudder of revulsion from the stump of Evil’s vestigial tail up his spine.

Sure, you’ve read a number of what you might call “lists” here at the National Evil. Um, like yesterday’s. (Click here!) And maybe that makes the following statement hypocritical, but: the Evil hates lists. Other people’s lists, that is. Hearing or reading someone’s list of who even cares? is akin to, but even worse than, listening to someone describe a boring, pointless dream (“So I was in line at the grocery store—or maybe it was a Wal-Mart–anyway, you were there, and you were there, and my 9th grade English teacher was at the register, and we were all reciting that Shakespeare monologue, you know, the one from Hamlet, ‘To be or not to be’, only we were singing—”) . . . at least in the case of the dream, you can blame your subconscious. But list-making is a conscious act acted on with malice aforethought.

Lists are like your kid’s first poop—it’s charming to you, but to no one else. (Unless your kid poops liquid gold, which is the excretory equivalent of any list the Evil produces. So keep looking for and enjoying those. Like this one, for instance. Now that’s a list!!!)

What makes Yahoo’s daily-shitting-out-of-pointlessness even worse is that today’s chosen list is—prepare to cringe—“The 25 Best ‘Best Of’ Albums”. Truly, we have reached a cultural nadir. A wallowing-in-nostalgia list of the 25 best plain-old albums is insufferable enough; now we’re being encouraged to wallow in the nostalgia over the nostalgia? Like “Wow, this is the best distillation of a 20-year-career into what were judged the most non-threatening, radio-friendly, 3-minute singalongable snippets ever!!!”

Maybe—maybe!!!—we can get VH1’s “I Love the 80s” team back together to talk about their favorite greatest hits albums of 1986!!! (Or whenever Air Supply dropped their Monster Smashes double-cassette.) That would be radical. Because, Evil knows, there couldn’t possibly be anything musically going on that’s more interesting than deciding whether the Eagles’ Greatest Hits, Vol. 1 (which, incidentally, is issued to all the damned as they file through the Gates of Hell) ranks higher than CCR’s Chronicle.

Go ahead—click on the link. Read the list. Evil knows you want to . . . just promise him you’ll be suitably appalled.

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4 thoughts on “yahoo’s “25 best ‘best of’ albums”: zeitgeist-defining curio or sign of the apocalypse?”

  1. The aggravating thing is that it would probably be easier to get a few million people organized to march on Yahoo! in protest of this list than it would to get anybody behind my 365 Point Plan to Save the Universe. Seems like this probably isn’t the best time for me to type it all out for you, but I updated it just the other day, deleting some nonsense about universal health care around item 239 or so and penciling in “Burn Down K-Tel Records HQ” in its place.

    I do have to admit that I have some of these albums and agree with Yahoo! that they really are the shit. It seems to me that the older greatest hits albums (Meaty Beaty Big and Bouncy, The Kinks Kronikles, Louder than Bombs, the old Dylan Greatest Hit packages) were a lot more creative and artistic than the newer ones that seem guided only by sales statistics. Meaty Beaty, for instance, comes of as a thematic collection of some sort, rather than really being about what singles sold the most units. “Mary Anne with the Shaky Hands” for instance wasn’t anything like a hit. It was just a really good song about handjobs, and the world needs more of those.

  2. Maybe somebody should put out a collection of songs about hand jobs! I’ll start working on a list now.

    My God, I need a life.

  3. evil will admit that the collections featured here are pretty . . . great.

    would it have been too much for the author, already subjecting us to this foofaraw, to drop a debbie gibson’s greatest, say, or a best of winger into the mix. just to shake things up? or to see who’s paying attention?

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