Tuesday, September 08, 2009

The Best and Worst of Joy

Joy is officially released today. Many of you have already heard it through a leaked copy or perhaps you were listening to live versions via We Can Still Have Joy.

At any rate, I polled my colleagues at Coventry Music Blog about their favorite and least favorite songs on the new album. Aside from Time Turns Elastic getting the (obvious) nod for Worst Song, the other results were a little surprising considering that Oceleot got the nod for Best Song on Joy.

I asked everyone to rank their top three and bottom three songs. The number of first place votes is in parentheses.
Best Song on Joy:
1. Ocelot (4)
2. Stealing Time from the Faulty Plan (1)
3. Backwards Down the Number Line (2)

Worst Song on Joy:
1. Time Turns Elastic (4)
2. Joy (2)
3. I Been Around (2)
Although Backwards Down the Number Line had more first place votes than Stealing Time for Best Song, that was the only votes it received. Stealing Time was selected as second favorite song twice and even picked up a third place vote.

Kill Devil Falls and Twenty Years Later did not get any first place votes for Best Song, however, they did get mentioned as a second or third favorite.

I Been Around featuring Page got only two votes for Worst Song and they were in the top spot. Joy, the bittersweet title track, was mentioned as the second Worst Song on the album on two occasions.

Sugar Shack is a mixed-bag with our crew. It was the only other song that got a first place vote for Best Song, yet it was also considered for Worst Song on the album and also got two votes for second worst song and two votes for third worst song.

So there you have it. We sampled the goods and have spoken. We love Ocelot and don't like TTE.


Anonymous said...

Ocelot is my favorite...but I will always be considered a 'n00b' -

Joker advised I dress as an 'Ocelot' for Festival 8 and find all the other Phish animals (llamas, possums, birds, pigs, etc) and become their friend!!!!


mikey freshh said...

oc3lot rules!

Pauly said...

I forgot to add that Light and I Been Around also got second and third place votes for BEST SONG.

Brad said...

Interesting getting other perspectives. Personally, I'd put TTE and I Been Around at the top of my list along with Sugar Shack. But then again I didn't see TTE a million times on the past tour.

Ziggy Stardust said...

Can I contribute? Do my opinions matter? Because I'd put the top three as 20 years later, stealing time, and light. I like where bdtnl ends up, but the beginning is just so damned cheesy. They're lucky they stuck let me lie on party time, because otherwise I would focus all available voting power on keeping that at the bottom of the list. Bottom three would have to be TTE, I Been Around, and, oh I guess Sugar Shack, because I really can't hate on Joy. All four of those tunes are just kinda meh, whereas I really enjoy the other six.

crontegy said...

i agree with the top 3 best songs unless you include the intro to Sugar Shack, that alone beats Backwards. But TTE, Joy, Light, and Twenty Years Later are all the worst songs not only of this album, but the worst songs ever written by Phish. Horrible, horrible songs. cheesy, corny, dumb, ghey. Backwards isnt much better than these 4, but it is better. and the rest, who cares. what a disappointing album. Trey needs to get out of this reflection and grateful era, it just doesnt translate to songs. and i am still hoping for a Mike takeover of Phish, banning Trey from writing any songs. :)

GonePhishin said...

IMO this study is defunct! Not enough participants for any of the results to be taken seriously.

Light easily takes the cake.

Sugar Shack is smokin'.

BDTNL needs to be heard live and is a scorcher.

TTE has ironically grown on me more and more over the past several months, and right now is just a fabulous representation of where Phish has been and how far they've come all the way up to the present time.

Joy actually sounds really nice on the album too.

But then...where is Party Time?

Pauly said...

This was a poll of COVENTRY contributors. I got everyone's opinions except Jonas.

Broseph said...

ziggystardust nailed my top three songs, but in different order. Also, in the spirit of full disclosure, I was the only one who put ocelot in the worst songs, mostly because I find it annoying. And btw, hearing it over and over made me dislike it more and more.

Kid Dynamite said...

I'm permanently biased in favor of TTE because i was at the Fenway show, where it sizzled.

Julius_Goat said...

I am the "Sugar Shack" lover. I think it has a wide-open potential with that big funk intro.

Peter Griffin said...

I really don't get all the hate for TTE.
i guess real musical composition is not what people are looking for.
everyone just wants the "single" or the "rager"
i hope they do more songs like TTE

Irongirl01 said...

Gone Phishin concurred with my top 3 just not in the same order. And also concurs that TTE grows on you. Im sure that will eventually move up on my list and Joy down.

Joy is easily my 4th least favorite song. But i felt bad putting it in the bottom three because of what the song supposedly signifies/represents to Trey so i cut it slack. Its not a bad song. I'm just not into jambands doing ballads or for that matter Jambanders sounding like lounge singers such as Page on Ive been around easily my least favorite tune. I mean come on two minutes of filler. Live in concert as a segue its fun as it was at SPAC. Did it deserve the album. I think not.

the problem with TTE is that it may play well live but not in the context of an album and needs some work. Im too ADD to handle a whole Prog record compososition

as an official voter I went: BDTNL, Sugar Shack, Light for favs. I thought these three have or will have the best jam potential. I mean Sugar Shack has that awesome funky intro.

I think its funny ocelot won favorite song amongst us. After 100 plays that is going to wear on me like the grateful deads Black Peter. not a bad song but it will get irritating in the long hall.

I guess we all get different things or are looking for different things out of our music!!!

GonePhishin said...

Great smiley thread all.

Irongirl - glad we agree on the TTE. For me, it's just perfect for the ADD, so many quick and swift changes, keeps me on track and looking forward to that next change. ;)

Kid D - I believe I recall the Toyota Park version (TTE) also to be quite sizzling.

Sugar Shack is definitely MOST UNDERRATED!

But then Ocelot has to be OVERRATED.

Light is up there too...but it's the Moma-->Light from El Gorge that got me hooked on it, not the album version.

Go Phish!

PS - I think I'll try Alaska.

Pauly said...

Not a fan of Light, but the Gorge jam gives it hope.

jfarns said...

do the album versions matter all that much? Joy sounds much better on the album than live. It seems sorta like Mexican Cousin.

I'm not a huge fan of the 20 years later on the album, but the SPAC version was evidence enough for me that I'm looking forward to hearing that as often as possible.

and TTE is rock opera. they obviously appreciate it having showcased it in many spots this summer.

light is the greyest area, but i'm with pauly, the gorge jam was impressive.

IamwhatIam said...

I think LIGHT is the best song on the album by far.

I liked it quite a bit at Bonnaroo and actually liked it at Fenway too.

I'll disagree with the TTE comments in this thread in that :
A) I don't like it overall.
B) I like it EVEN LESS live than I do on the album. It's like a vacuum that sucks all the energy out of a show.

Kill Devil Falls is the opposite...don't care for a studio version but can be a rager live...again see Bonnaroo or Asheville.

I like BDTNL, Stealing Time and Ocelot.

If I was ranking it would be :

1. Light
3. Stealing Time

3 Worst :

Worst :
Second Worst :
Third Worst :
I've been around.

the joker said...

i think the only way i would like TTE live is if submarines came out on stage and naked female dancers jumped out. which, i think is a damn good idea for at least 1 song per set in any case and they need to get on for Halloween STAT!

M. said...

I really enjoyed every time TTE was thrown out there this summer. I got a lot of repeats these shows, and not just TTE. I'm really looking forward to hearing Trey and the NY Phil do it up one...more...time this Saturday!

Kid Dynamite said...

joker - you weren't at Fenway were you? that's EXCATLY what happened during TTE!

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