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THiS is SOUND Throwback. James Cassar has a DeLorean DMC. Do you?


        By: James Cassar

    Fact: Relationships are expensive. Another fact: Prom tickets are expensive. The most logical conclusion would be to suck it up and go because girls eat up school dances like their data plans – they’re always hungry for more time with their loved ones, whether it’s their iPhone or their broke boyfriend. I signed up for this, though, and jumping ship now would be a sore breach of contract and totally unnecessary on my part. How cute, right?
            The best part about having a girlfriend who lives 207.87 miles away is that we trade music over the Internet just like I make mixtapes for kids here. The difference is the scope of it: Kenzie and James’ Music Listography totals out to 20 master mixes, 350 songs. That’s honestly the chunk of my library that I listen to most. But, what does this common affinity for bygone cassette culture have to do with a masquerade ball?
            Not much. We went to homecoming together, Kenzie and I, but that was just an excuse to hang out, honestly. Since then, I’ve realized candlelit Taco Bell dinners and nights playing Nintendo 64 amount to something greater than two left feet and the Cha Cha Slide. Maybe that’s just my wallet talking, but believe me; high school love doesn’t revolve around money. For me, it’s old formats and someone to listen to them with.
            Sharing the date with Tuscarora’s Masquerade Ball is Record Store Day, a tradition started in 2007 by record store employee Chris Brown, who spends his days getting his hands on vinyl instead of Rihanna’s face. With past alumni of this event being R.E.M, The Hold Steady, Blur, and The Black Keys, some may attribute this vivacious music madness to indie hipsters that cry fair-trade coffee grounds. In recent years, however, new releases have been unveiled on Record Store Day in the U.S. and U.K. from Adele, The Rolling Stones, A Day to Remember, a retrospective Nirvana single, and the Beatles. With this year’s hullabaloo heralded by Official Ambassador Iggy Pop of Stooges fame, 2012 brings together the old and new, from the Record & Tape Exchange in Fairfax to Smash Records in D.C., and everywhere mixed-up and musical in between.
            So where does this article bring its point back to tuxes and Hummer limos? Guess how my lucky lass and I are spending Prom? Not among the few, the proud, the Huskies and the Convention Center. We’re going back to the vinyl era.
A List of Our Favorite Songs That Should Be Picked Up On Record Store Day
                                                *as of last weekend

Pulp: “Bar Italia” (1995)
As much as I love barreling down Battlefield jamming to old-school cuts from Run D.M.C., kicking back with some Arizona and listening to this track makes us seem less stressed out and more sophisticated and classy than we actually are. Just think about it… who would you rather be, a Britpop kid crooning across tinny pianos, or a true Virginian fistpumping to LMFAO on the dancefloor? I’d take the former in a heartbeat. U mad?
Story of the Year: “Until the Day I Die” (2003)
I first heard this song alongside a trailer for Friday Night Lights and immediately thought this quite honestly could be the greatest arena-punk ballad since The Misfits covered the 1952 smash “You Belong to Me.” Maybe it’s my knack for having a soft spot for post-hardcore romps and catering to my Warped Tour craving, but give this track a listen. I guarantee you’ll have a person that comes to you when you hear the lyrics.
Jimmy Eat World: “Work” (2004)
The video for this song actually deals with high-school and college-age kids talking about their futures, which not surprisingly, deal with  work. Even though the title of the song suggests strained vocals, downturned instrumentation and a dark backdrop, it’s more often than not that this song induces a feeling of calm and thought instead of clenched fists and furrowed brows.
Brand New: “The Boy Who Blocked His Own Shot” (2005)
Deja Entendu, the album that this acoustic number is housed, was pressed on vinyl and now retails on eBay for about $500 a pop. As much it’d be more economical to pawn a CD for $10 at Hot Topic, the ethereal lyrics and low-key guitars of the song really make an excellent return of investment. Fun fact: I wrote a short story with this song as a reference. Guess who it was for?
Bad Company: “Seagull” (1974)
The last track of the rock super group’s debut LP, it wasn’t released commercially as a single, but very well could be, it’s got a memorable hook and ringing guitar melody similar to the Goo Goo Dolls’ “Iris.” It’s not surprising that Friday Night Lights released this on the official soundtrack. It’s about as chill as the main vehicle for the compilation, post-rock outfit Explosions in the Sky.
Enter Shikari: “Adieu” (2005)
Another ballad by a post-hardcore band, “Adieu” blends strings with pre-dubstep (the band calls the U.K. their home, the motherland of wobble bass) synth elements and subdued, harmonized vocals. It’s got low lyric lines that hint at the solemnity of the title but the line “Home could be anywhere when I am holding you” proves that like every song on this list, and the underlying theme of my relationship, it’s just as important to experience love through music as it is through a masquerade.

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