I got an AI neural network to write the next Foo Fighters album

I fed a neural network the title, track names, and lyrics for all of Foo Fighters’ ten studio albums. Thanks to Max Woolf’s Blog and his handy Google Colaboratory Notebook, getting the network to create new text was pretty easy. I’ll admit I’m very much a beginner, and clearly someone else has done all the programming legwork. But here it is, my AI-generated eleventh Foo Fighters album: These Misplaced Plans.

All text was generated through the tools above, though I have whittled it down to just the best parts and made some formatting changes. The processes were run multiple times with temperatures between 0.8 and 1.8.

Track 1: Whatever Happened To Me?

I have all run out of time
I'm thirsty for wings
I've waited here for you
Bet your life there's something down there
That's not there

You know there's nothing wrong with legs
You know there's something wrong with legs
'Cause you're so clingy
You're not alone
Not one of these days
You're the only one
Who's up in arms
People you've lost

Who you are
Who you are
Who you are
Who you are
Who you are to everyone
Everyone's a piece of shit

We're finished growing old
We're still young
We're not old
We're not even
Track 2: Girl Going Big

I waited out on high street
She doesn't speak
I waited her wind through the river
It faded, like a war wrapped around flowers
She went by a name
She crossed paths with the devil
One day she'll disappear

She's stuck within her will
She's forced to move
She communicates
She's cartoons just waiting for the light

Wish I would open a new line
Well I waited out on a row

I was kind of looking forward to something
Since one day I'll have to hand over the dishes
The dishes don't need turning
I laid back and waited
Wait until the cows are animals
Fame, fame, go away, go away, nothing

I walked by and she was talking about graffiti
Hanging on the wall
A jukebox full of Death Grips
She said she felt she'd been cheated
I said she must have been
Track 3: All I Ever Wanted Was A Hearse

Taught me the secrets I've kept
A jukebox miracle
The world is a pretty bright iron curtain
I'm a race with your arms around me

Find me some rope and I'll let you hang around
Anything can be undone
But here's the thing
If you want to
I'll give it to you
I say get on with your life
And change from inside your head

So when your big sister says you're not fit
She left your world behind and is changing again

Now you're looking for a complication
Someone to blame
I mean there's nothing wrong with that
Just make up your mind
I know you're still getting help
Looking for cause and effect
You don't have to use
You don't have to use
You don't have to use

Head full of evil but oh well
Just lookin' for a martyr
Just to bother you

But you're so considerate
You gave me hope
But there's much to be said

And since I'm beaming
One day I'll have enough to gamble
And bet I'll have enough to lose
Bet I'll have enough to gamble
Track 4: A Leading Role-Playing Game

I like black hole
I'm hanging on
I can see the black widow
I got high because
I'm hanging on

I remember dancing hard
Under the Dead Moon
Howling with you

Back and forth that singing voice of yours keeps coming back
Heavy metal you're me
Singing farewell
To hear you sang this goodbye

I'm the same as you
I'm the same as you

You're everything
You're everything
I'm everything

Stack dead actors, stacked walls, stacked gravestones
And they sing
They're called
Fame dies behind, fame looms
Trading photographs on the radio
Fake it all away

I'm the same as you
I'm the same as you

You're everything
You're everything
I'm everything

Stack dead actors, stacked walls, stacked gravestones
And they sing
They're called
Fame dies behind, fame looms
Trading photographs on the radio
Fake it all away

My closets are burning now
I want to return to you
I couldn't stay
It took all the space
And wind the ceiling

Stack dead actors, stacked walls, stacked gravestones
And they sing
They're called
Fame dies behind, fame looms
Trading photographs on the radio
Fake it all away
Track 5: Promise Not To Turn

You signed one note
There was your sweet lead
Dancing in the lost phone writer
If tomorrow brought colds and cancellations
You didn't cross my thumb
It's resigned to the much-maligned bruise
Wait until tomorrow to sign a lock of satin
And when they say lock, I double check
Like a spitball
Spit along it's core
Don't tune in
Not yet not yet

But anyway

Want a song even I can sing
It goes 'round and 'round and 'round again
I just hate to break it to you
Pretend there's nothing wrong
With that couldn't be
Comfortably indecent
Track 6: Asteroids

A heaven on fire
And then a Roma on fire
Read through their eyes
Then we sat around and drank ice tea
And read the Aurora pack
Then we sat around and watched the Aurora come and go
Slow watching
And then we shrugged
Wasting another night

We may perceive you
But the truth is, we're nights

We're hungry for war
'Cause both of us
Are mute
Only subjective experiences
Distorting the whole

We will come back
We hit the baubles
We paid the witnesses
We'll lie to get what we need
We were comedy liars

Grinning under the guise of change
Pure delusion
So you can laugh at me
I lost my headlamp
And it saved me the trouble of arranging places
Here's a call to all my brain waves
Counting down to zero hour

We may gleefully gather then
Track 7: Era Songwriter

Look out 'cause you know it's there
Make it ring
Like a drug of desire
So synthetically known
If you need help there's something you can turn to

I may be teary in her lights
I may be numb with her songs
She thinks she knows me
But she's listening

Into the smoke to come
Like a plant that's won its punch
Out selfishly
You know what you can do

I can learn to sing
Pray it doesn't always sting
I cursed
Well I exchanged vows
And sat in a firing line
Wasn't stopped for a pronunciation mistake
'Cause I've been doin' it all my life

A little revenge for all the drinks
Wasn't enough to start a fire
But it's a bad cold
When you can take it away
Track 8: Past Rites

Well I've searched for suns vibrating inside them
Standing in the dark
The hardest part is knowing
Everything must die at sea

I approached
I considered
But canceled
I waited my turn
We'll lay low and suffer suffering
One by one, right?

Because tomorrow
I can put myself behind
If everything's erased
I have no regrets
I was wrong
I was right
Just walked through the room
Joining you now
Just change and leave

Because yesterday was a lie
Easy room promptly given
Knowledges all their lives
Now that they learn to live again
It's no use
I created a gigantic window
And sat in it howling mad

Here comes Bill
You unemployed Composer
You gotta make it right
Hey, you poor bastard
We need more, now
Send it through the grapevine

Did you drown me while I was listening
Hate it, hate it
Switch between the sprayed and the bereft
Shame it, shame it

Here were some other potential album titles:
– One Heavy Favor
– ‘Til Everything’s Alright
– Free the Blues
– Fractured Continents Circa 1780
– riffbaby
– Where Are All the Watters?
– 14 Monuments
– Monster Lullaby
– No Editor Remorse
– Yawn Brain


Taco Jamz 2017

The year was 2005, and technology played by different rules. Texts cost a nickel a piece. You had to go to thefacebook.com. And if you wanted to listen to a custom music playlist, you pretty much had to burn a CD. Which is exactly what my then 8-year old brother asked me to do.

The request: to make him a mix with “the James Bond theme, the Pirates of the Caribbean theme, that one song from Shrek 2, and whatever else to fill up the CD. And call it Taco Jamz. With a Z.”

I honestly didn’t think too hard when I filled the remaining 65 minutes of the disc. Just stuff that I liked that was relatively family friendly. Jimmy Eat World, Foo Fighters, and soundbites from Homestar Runner. The CD became the soundtrack for the family road trip when I moved into the freshman dorm later that year. My folks ended up listening to the mix more than my brother did.

Taco Jamz became an annual tradition. While the name stayed the same, the content was more deliberately selected. Each mix became a recap of the year, featuring songs from recent movies, associated with cultural events, obscure references, or from bands someone in the family had just seen. I’d usually round it out with whatever neat stuff I was listening to at the time.

Below, I present the official playlist for Taco Jamz 2017. I’ll post 2018 and 2019 soon enough. And the 2020 mix will be released by Christmas. I never actually kept a copy of the original mixes for myself, but as soon as I can steal them back from my parents, I’ll be posting those as well.


Top Albums of 2012

2012 is over, and since I have a blog, I’m legally obligated to write a few “best-of-the-year” posts. I meant to do this last year—a true list of my favorite albums from 2011. But either I didn’t buy anything new or it was a really bad year for my kind of music. Either way, I went with a “most-played” list. 2012 was different. Lots of great music was released, and while I’ll admit there’s a lack of diversity genre-wise in what I listen to, here are my picks for my favorite albums of 2012:

Phillip Phillips - The World from the Side of the Moon

5. Phillip Phillips – “The World from the Side of the Moon” Somewhere I read a review that called Dave Matthews’ “Away From the World” the second best Dave Matthews release of the year. That’s because Phillip Phillips had the best one. I kid, I kid. I realize Phil won American Idol by doing one hell of a Dave impression, but you could tell there was a lot of talent beyond the role Idol forced him to play. “The World from the Side of the Moon” is surprisingly refreshing, probably because Phillips wound up with a lot more creative control and writing credit than most Idol winners’ debut. Also: not ashamed to admit that I love American Idol. Check out: “Gone, Gone, Gone

Smashing Pumpkins - Oceania4. The Smashing Pumpkins – “Oceania” Putting all the line-up changes, dickish interviews, and complaining he does about his band-mates, Billy Corgan is still one of my all-time favorite musicians. Sure, the original Pumpkins were the best. But I loved Zwan’s only album. And “Zeitgeist” had a great sound, even if it was almost an entirely new band. “Oceania” follows suit. It’s different, but that’s not a bad thing. Corgan’s signature sound is there, but with a new electronic/prog rock influence. Can’t say I think it’s a direction the band should continue in, but it made for a solid album and a fun experiment (which isn’t that all the Pumkins are anymore—an elaborate Billy Corgan experiment?). Take a listen to: “The Celestials

Actionslacks - Actionslacks

3. Actionslacks – “Actionslacks” Hopefully this won’t be the last Slacks release ever, but given the cover art and some of the comments made by the band members themselves, sounds like it might be. If so, this is a heck of a way to go out. A friend got me hooked on these guys more than ten years ago, and it’s been fun to hear the band’s sound progress from a raw, garage band to a well-polished power-pop sound. This EP seems to deliberately cover each stage in the band’s career. The tracks range from the darker, angsty punk stuff from their early days, to the catchy, pop song named after some historical figure that seems to appear on every album. As a stand-alone album, it’s not their best. But anyone who’s been a fan of these guys for a while will absolutely love it. Watch: “Helen of Troy

Of Monsters and Men - My Head is an Animal

2. Of Monsters and Men – “My Head is an Animal” I swear I was listening to “Little Talks” nonstop for a solid year before this album came out (it was my most listened to track of 2012). Absolutely love the way these guys can mix such an upbeat, horn-driven melody with such haunting, heavyhearted lyrics. I honestly had my doubts about this album at first because the 30-second samples of the other tracks from Amazon and iTunes didn’t do any of them justice. Shame on me for trying to judge it from those. The rest of the album more than keeps up with the awesomeness of it’s first single. Also pretty cool: “Mountain Sound

Mumford and Sons - Babel

1. Mumford & Sons – “Babel” 2012 was definitely the year of Euro-folk-rock, with Mumford & Sons leading the way. “Sigh No More” was filled with absolutely wonderful songs, but it was never an album I could listen to straight through. There’s always a song or two I’ll skip, depending on my mood. Or I’d just want to listen to “The Cave” on repeat forever. But with this newest album, M&S has put together their best work, even if they’ve pigeon-holed themselves into a very particular sound. Each track follows a similar pattern—starts off slow and simple, and gradually builds up to huge, resonant, rock-out instrumental. While some people complain that every track sounds the same, I think it gives this album a wonderful start-to-finish completeness. Favorite song: “Lover of the Light

You can keep up with what I’m listening to at any time at my Last.fm profile here.

2011 Music Recap

With 2011 wrapped up, I feel obligated to write some end-of-the-year recaps. I wish I could do a post about my favorite albums of 2011, but with my weird tastes, I haven’t listened to much that came out last year. In fact, I only bought one album actually released in 2011. So with that, here are the five bands I listened to most in 2011 (according to my Last.fm page).

Sherwood5. Sherwood – Discovered this band a couple of years ago after Amazon had their album ‘QU’ as a $3.99 album of the day. Listened to just a couple 30-second samples, and fell in love. “You Are” was easily my most-played on the album, and led me to discover what’s now one of my all-time favorite music videos. I went back and collected a lot of their older stuff, none of which disappoints. Still heartbroken that I missed them in Minneapolis, and wish they’d post some new tour dates…

Actionslacks4. Actionslacks – Quite possibly my favorite band of all time, and easily made my top five of the year despite no recent releases. Which brings me to my biggest disappointment of the year: no new ‘Slacks. There have been a number of updates over the last two years regarding a new EP—but nothing has come of it! Hopefully 2012 will finally bring some new tunes. Regardless, these guys’ stuff will always be at the top of my playlists. ‘The Scene’s Out of Sight’—a perfect blend of rock, pop, indie, and even some hints of jazz—was an album that got me through high school and the source of some of the first stuff I ever taught myself to play on guitar.

Jimmy Eat World3. Jimmy Eat World – Probably the band I’ve followed longer than any other, JEW sits high on my most-played list thanks to ‘Invented,’ which was released late last year. Great album, though very similar in style to their previous album ‘Chase This Light.’ I was kind of hoping for a slightly darker and emotional (to be read as emotional, not emo) sound like ‘Futures,’ whose title track will probably be my election-year theme song for the rest of forever.

Tron Legacy2. Daft Punk – Not a band (can you call them a band?) that I normally listen to, but the soundtrack to ‘Tron: Legacy’ was one of the coolest things I’ve ever heard. I’m a big soundtrack geek, and always have one going if I need background noise but still need to concentrate on something. So thanks to this album, Daft Punk gets the number two spot on my list. And the movie was pretty awesome too, even if the ending makes no sense. I mean, Jeff Bridges and new guy go in, new guy and Olivia Wilde come out. So the guy’s totally gonna hook up with a chick made out of his dad’s particles, right?

Foo Fighters1. Foo Fighters – ‘Wasting Light’ was the only new album I bought this year, and it’s awesomeness was probably the reason I didn’t need anything else and definitely the reason Foo takes the top spot. I hesitate to call ‘Wasting Light’ their best album yet, since their sound has evolved so much and it’s hard to say anything is better than ‘The Colour and the Shape.’ But this one definitely perfects their hard-rock sound, and is maybe the only one I can listen to from beginning to end without skipping one here and there or picking and choosing a song based on my mood. And this album offers more proof that great bands will put out some of their best material even after a studio forces a ‘greatest hits’ album (see R.E.M., Red Hot Chili Peppers, Green Day, etc.)

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