This Morning Countdown actually comes to us from the gym, not the subway, as I’ve started working out before heading to school each morning. It’s been a big adjustment, going to bed at ten and getting up around six, but it hasn’t been as hard as I expected, thank God. All in all, it feels good to be getting back in shape, though my triceps are killing me even as I type this.
Here are the songs that came up as I tried to pedal myself into oblivion on the bike machine:
1) Kokomo – The Beach Boys
2) Song From a Secret Garden – Secret Garden
3) This Perfect World – Freedy Johnston
4) The Rejection – Dangerous Muse
5) Should’ve Known Better – Richard Marx
“Kokomo” is actually not a bad song to start a workout. It’s got a nice beat that chugs along, that gets you in a nice groove before you start pushing things into overdrive. Besides, it’s catchy as heck: “Aruba, Jamica, ooh I wanna take ya…”
I didn’t have as much luck with the next song. Trust me, there’s a reason why there aren’t many New Age Music For Workouts compilations. “Song From a Secret Garden” is a beautiful piece of work, but you have to be in the right mood for it, and trying to get your heart pumpin’ and your body rockin’ ain’t it. Still, like I said, it’s a beautiful song, and I’ve gotta stay objective despite its non-gym-appopriateness.
Freedy Johnston’s not much better in terms of music to exercise to, but I was still glad to hear him. He does the smalltown folk rock thing very well, and I remember buying his album after seeing the “Bad Reputation” video on VH1. Good memories. “This Perfect World” is another solid track, despite being a bit too morose at times (I prefer my lugribriosity a bit more polished).
Then came back the beat, courtesy of Dangerous Muse. My pedal-pumping power increased tenfold, I’m sure. I love “The Rejection.” It’s slightly ominous but still insanely catchy (“Arms up, just dance. Arms out, just dance…”). I’m still waiting for those guys to release their first full-length album. What is taking them so long? (Patience is not one of my virtues.)
The final song of the countdown was Richard Marx’s “Should’ve Known Better,” and the beginning guitar riffs triggered the same reaction that Bon Jovi’s “I’ll Be There For You” did in the last countdown, as in “F*%# yeah!” I hadn’t heard this song in AGES, and while it doesn’t quite reach Bon Jovi’s heights, it’s still my 2nd favorite Richard Marx song ever, right behind his murder-mystery “Hazard”.
It’s a solid bunch of songs (though I wouldn’t recommend it as a workout playlist), but I think the one that really reaches greatness is the hypnotic spell cast by “The Rejection” (with “Should’ve Known Better” coming in second). Once the song enters your head, it really stays in there. In fact, it was up for serious consideration for my Top 101 list. So, come on, Dangerous Muse. Like I said, BRING ON THE ALBUM ALREADY!!!
Winner: Dangerous Muse – The Rejection