My Top 1000 Songs #502: Define A Transparent Dream
Another example of one of my favorite albums not showing up until surprisingly deep into the list... here, largely because Olivia Tremor Control's amazing 1996 retro-psychedelic opus Dusk At Cubist Castle works better as an interwoven album-length musical collage than on an individual song level. It's not a concept album where the songs don't make sense on their own, but most the tracks, many of which are indeed individually great, tend to stick around just long enough for a captivating verse and chorus before dissolving into some studio playfulness and segueing into whatever lies next around the corner.
Though it's tough to settle in on just one favorite, "Define A Transparent Dream" may best capture the ethos of the record--some trippy psychedelic weirdness that combines 60s post-Sgt. Pepper musical exploration with 80s Paisley Underground pop-psych nostalgia, abetted by jangly guitars and gorgeous harmonies. Like many of the album's standouts, you kinda wish it lasted just a bit longer before the electronic noodling kicked in--though heard as the second part of a two-song suite with the equally great "Jumping Fences," it serves as a perfect representation of this fantastic record.Live 2012: