That’s what Spotify has declared it for me, though as much as I love(d) Chris Cornell, the thought of enduring multiple Audioslave tracks makes me…itchy? They’re kinda like a sweater your grandma made for you; made with love and all good intentions but its just so tacky and irritating that you’ve gotta take it off as soon as you can.

I can deal with “Like a Stone” on occasion though, it has a fuzzy feeling attached to it. A boy once learned the guitar solo to humor me a couple decades ago. I was being a maudlin little shithead, so he played it to cheer me up. It evidently cheered me up SO MUCH that said guitar player ultimately ended up knocking me up. If it wasn’t for that goddamned rock radio friendly track, I’d not have reproduced (Well, let’s be real…forever swoon for moody musicians, so yeaaaah, it woulda happened because of another song I’m sure)! Tom Morello owes me nineteen years of back child support.

I suppose I should be grateful that it’s only an Audioslave track. Can you imagine accidentally creating life, a whole-ass human being, because someone played you a Behemoth guitar solo??

“Yeah, I got all hot and bothered because of music created by a tiny middle-aged Satanist Polish man who has slathered his face with grease paint intended for circus clowns in an attempt to look intimidating since the early 90’s and who posts yoga videos on the internets to get little digital hearts of validation and now I’m 27 pounds heavier and I have to wipe a tiny ass and never sleep!” (oh, and you can have that gigantic run on sentence as a little treat. You’re welcome, big brain nerds).

Truly the stuff of fairy tales right there, kids.

“Divorced Dad Grunge Rock Afternoon.” It’s a fitting title for the list. It was absolutely inevitable that one day I too would be old enough to hear the hits of my early 20’s become the tinny soundtrack being piped through the garden section of some shitty south city superstore where the only one listening is the corn (korn?) and some elder Millennial who is now dying just a little bit more inside because a muzak version of a Green Day song about masturbation has replaced the likes of Chicago or Led Zepplin in the “You’re a Happy Consumer! Spend! (and Don’t Forget Your Fiber!)” playlist. The sounds of Accept and Queen have been tuned out of the garage and dads are now blasting White Zombie and Cannibal Corpse as they yell curses because of their own shortcomings as a mechanic. I went to a wedding where the couple’s first dance was to “Walk With Me Through Hell,” by Lamb of God *coughcough my sister coughcough* (If you’re not familiar with the band, don’t let the biblical name fool you; they were originally called Burn the Priest to give you an idea of the sort of clearly grandmother friendly tunes they produce).

This isn’t me trying to wax poetic about the faded days of my youth, nor do I subscribe to the idealized “Back In My Day Things Were Better!” mentality. I am enjoying watching as the timeline progresses. Soon enough it’ll be “Remarried Grandpa Blastbeat Breakfast Hits” and “Thrice Widowed Scene Queen Great Aunt Afternoon.” My kid’ll get lists like “Sad Face Tattoo Havin’ Dad Mumble Rap Monday Morning” or “TikTok Bruh Badass on God Tuesday” or whatever. I’m here for it. Change is good. Not being 23 anymore is even better. Bring on the new noise!

(Since I sat down to write this, Spotify has shifted to the “Divorced Dad Alternative Rock Sunday” playlist. I should likely go find something else to do before I go on about how I think Jack White looks like a dusty Victorian lady from a Tim Burton knock-off straight to Netflix cartoon….)

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