The Pitch’s Infinite Playlist Round 1: Brock Wilbur

Infinite Playlist Header Shelby Phelps

The Pitch’s Infinite Playlist. // Illustration by Shelby Phelps

Welcome to The Pitch’s Infinite Playlist, a forever-growing playlist of songs picked by people in KC. View/follow the full playlist on Spotify and you can always go back and check out the full run of articles.

Playlist Guest #1: Brock Wilbur

Who are you and what do you do?
I’m the Editor-in-Chief at The Pitch. A curmudgeonly cheerleader. Just zis guy, you know?

Where can we follow/support you and your work?
Thought you’d never ask! ThePitchKC.com is where we produce great journalism, each and every day of the year. But also check out Caring into the Void, my books, or my dumb little Twitter jokes.

What are today’s additions to The Pitch’s Infinite Playlist?

Glad you asked. Let’s do it.

Bloc Party – “Song For Clay (Disappear Here)”
There’s no better explanation for this than to say that I’ve never started a mix CD with anything else. It’s the perfect opening track for anything. Being an adaptation of my favorite book—Less Than Zero—doesn’t hurt. There’s just never been a point in my life, no matter what I’m doing or where I’m living, that the insights of Kele Okereke don’t cut like a knife and kick total ass in equal measure.

“I am trying to be heroic in an age of modernity
I am trying to be heroic, because all around me history sings
So I enjoyed and I devoured flesh and wine and luxury
But in my heart I am lukewarm nothing ever really touches me”

Yes, I feel seen Kele. Stop perceiving me.

 

U2 – “Discoteque” 
I didn’t like music as a kid. I was in piano lessons, that I hated. I kinda liked a few musicals. I enjoyed watching my dad’s oldies cover band play. But I simply did not get the idea of rock music. In the 6th grade, U2 came to Kansas City. My dad took me. It was my first real concert. It was Arrowhead Stadium and it blew my mind. Perhaps more importantly, U2 wishes I would forget this. In the mid-90s, U2 made an album called Pop that was equally a satire of capitalism and mainstream culture as it was a dance-electro album built to be played in clubs. To match the themes of the album, U2 bought the largest digital video stage in history, and put on a tour that nearly bankrupted them. But to be there and bear witness to the absolute height of excess? It’ll never be topped. Also, I was a child and a drunk college girl next to me kept falling onto me and trying to apologize by grabbing my arm and saying cute things. Truly the perfect rock introduction. Anyway, the album and the tour are both things U2 has tried to eradicate from their history—going so far as to re-record the few songs they put on greatest hits albums in very different styles. It remains my favorite U2 album, precisely because it makes them so angry. But my first rock concert and my first time at Arrowhead Stadium as a kid, wrapped into one? Priceless. As you can see from the video below, the entire band emerged from a discoball lemon to start the song. It’s hard to craft a stupider, amazing rock-n-roll madlib than that.

Interpol – “Obstacle 1”
In high school, my dad went out of his way to find a way to keep me “in the know” for important music. A few weeks before Interpol’s first album released—for reasons and access I’m still unaware of—he snuck me into a local late night club to see them. I wasn’t age-appropriate to attend. It was on a Wednesday and we lived three hours away. I’d never heard a single song. But my dad was like “We’re going to KC and I think it is going to be important.” And it was. We sat on a balcony and watch an Interpol hiterto unknown by the world play their first album. Afterwards, my dad made me introduce myself to their bass player behind the venue. All around? One of the weirdest best nights of my life—setting up KC as the kind of place where you have the weirdest best nights of your life.

Death From Above 1979 – “Romantic Rights”
When I first moved to KC, my biggest fear was losing my normal three-concert-per-week habit. I just lived at concerts for the last decade of my life. In our first week here, DFA1979 played recordBar. There were 100 people max. The last time I’d seen them, I’d driven to San Diego to see them in a stadium where no one mixed the music right and it just sounded like nothing. Here? I pulled a chair basically up to the stage and no one cared. Afterward, they were working their own merch booth. I’d went from stadium to touchable. Simply the greatest intro for me to KC that things were going to be great here.

Beck – “E-Pro”

My birthday three years back was on the same day Beck played Starlight. I bought tickets for a dozen of my friends? Beck is my like, top 3?, artist. Just ruined my life with what a great show it was. I hope to do it again?

Murder By Death – “Killbot 2000”

No one in the world has c. They were the last show I saw before the pandemic. They’ll probably be the lost show I ever see, in some form. God bless ’em.

The Faint – “Paranoia Attack”

Omaha created Bright Eyes and 311 and other bands I would tattoo on my body. Nothing more important than The Faint. Their keyboardists’ death was the first thing I saw after leaving the theater for the Sonic The Hedgehog movie. I cried a lot in the parking lot. Anyway, it’s wild that Omaha created the sound of a band (that I would see a dozen times in KC) that defined what the future probably sounds like.

St. Vincent – “Actor of Work”

Look. We know who our next Prince is. All bow down. Also your editor-in-chief is the former face of Guitar Center in national ads. This track hits too close to home haha.

LCD Soundsystem – “All My Friends”

I started crying while putting this in because of how many of you this song makes me think of. Oh no. Feeling!!!!!!!! WHERE ARE MY FRIENDS TONIGHT!?!?!?!?!?

 

Categories: Music