Hell yeah, it’s a goddamn emo teen sad breakup thirsty horny dance party. If you don’t hear it and think “i am 16 again”, what’s the point? We’d have failed. Dance out your teenage longing.
go and throw your little hands up
weird sad dance party. perfect for social gatherings!
Dance Dance Revolution
Recently I have had a problem where I want to listen to all the terrible DDR music of my youth, but every playlist is literally just the licenses from the PS2 games, so instead of like… Boys, by Smile.dk, it’s like Temperature by Sean Paul, which is NOT what I’m looking for. I have now remedied the situation. For the world.
This is, perhaps obviously but we’ll get to that, a playlist of music featured on the critically acclaimed music game Dance Dance Revolution. I had pretty specific criteria for this, and I feel obligated to explain it, because hell hath no fury like a bemani nerd who feels the need to correct someone.
First, the songs present on a version of a DDR game are not consistent between versions. The Japanese versions of the game were released on PlayStation and Arcade versions initially, and the songlists between the two are largely consistent. However, America is a much different story. The song licenses that are often present on a DDR game are not present in their American PlayStation counterparts, which can result in deviation from the arcade list. If you grew up playing DDR Extreme (2002) or DDRMAX (2001) on your PS2 and at one point were delighted during a family vacation to find an arcade cabinet with a similar name, you were probably disappointed to find that none of the songs that you remembered from your PlayStation 2 version were present. Song lists on the US PlayStation 2 versions tended to be tremendously cut down because of this whole deal with the licenses. So you loaded up, excited to play UK garage legend Spin Spin Sugar (Armand’s Dark Garage Remix)* and instead found a bunch of completely unapproachable eurodance versions of 80s pop songs. Fun trick!
(Then you just played Butterfly, by Smile.dk 3 songs in a row. Don’t lie, I know that’s what you did.)
So, to finally explain what exactly is going on here, this playlist is every song from DDR 1st Mix (1998) (that’s the one just called “Dance Dance Revolution” ) to DDR 8th Mix (that’s the one you likely remember as DDR Extreme .) Additionally/unfortunately/capitalismly, this playlist only contains the songs available on Spotify, which means that this is missing every single Konami original song from the series, which means this is sadly not the first Trash Garbage Playlist to feature MAX 300. The final criteria for curating this playlist was an attempt to put the full-length, actual version of the song that appeared in DDR. Sometimes this is the original song, but usually this is a Eurodance cover of it. So if you remember a song that’s present on DDR (eg, “We Will Rock You”) that’s not present in this playlist, it’s likely because I could not find the version used in DDR on Spotify as of May 20, 2022.
Now we can start discussing the weird stuff. Nothing was weird up to this point. Things are about to get weird starting now.
Early versions of DDR used a numbering system where they just referred to themselves as “Nth Mix”, with occasional subtitles if there was a different version of the game (eg, 3rd Mix  had 2 versions released specifically for the Korean Market, and 2nd Mix  had a curious version called Substream where it could be linked with a beatmania IIDX  cabinet, and beatmania and DDR players could play songs at the same time. I have always wanted to try this, somewhere, but I don’t think the stars will ever align to enable this.) Later versions of DDR would feature subtitles (DDR 6th Mix going by DDRMAX, 7th Mix going by DDRMAX2) and by the release of SuperNOVA  (the sequel to DDR Extreme aka 8th Mix), they dropped the numbering scheme altogether and just referenced each game by title, which means that Dance Dance Revolution X (2008) is the 11th game in the series, bugging me to no end.
Nothing has bugged me up until this point. We are now getting to the– actually, no, the Spotify stuff bugs me. But, you know. Back to the fun.
The very specific criteria for this Trash Garbage–curated DDR playlist include, naturally, two-tone legends The Specials, who were inexplicably selected for the first version of Dance Dance Revolution with the song “Little Bitch”. Interestingly, this was one of the more difficult songs in the game at the time of release. Pick it up!
It’s also worth mentioning that most of the licenses that came on the DDR arcade version were from a series of compilation albums known as Dancemania, a Japan-only release that featured eurodance or eurobeat remixes of popular songs. This should further explain why most of this was not available in non-Japanese Spotify regions until recently. Even still, most of this music is not present as part of Dancemania compilations, but instead manifests on this streaming site in a way that I find endlessly amusing: because most of these songs are well known pop songs covered in a eurodance style that’s about 130 beats per minute, it makes them absolute perfect fodder to run a spin class or similar group exercise class to, which means that an overwhelming number of these are attributed to albums like “ULTIMATE WORKOUT JAMS TO SWEAT TO 54”.
I should also mention that because this is only the arcade version’s licenses, none of the PS2 songs appear here, which means that I was surprised a couple times with “I didn’t know that made it to the arcade version.” Chiefly surprising among these was Duran Duran’s “The Reflex”.
In conclusion, I do not endorse capitalism, even though in a way capitalism is what made the curation nightmare that is this playlist fun. You’re having fun, right?
the cave level from pokemon snap
Some twinkly vibes for taking pictures of bats and plants in a cave. That’s it. I just like this level from this game. Here, I made a one-hour loop of it! Put on the playlist, put this video on in the background, and just feel how cozy and charming this is!
I’m not interested in writing about the concept of nostalgia or its utilization in late-capitalism and/or the collective trauma of a pandemic or whatever vis a vis New Pokémon Snap. So instead here is every Pokémon featured in the cave level from the original N64 Pokémon Snap ranked by what they would sing at karaoke and how good it would be.
14. Zubat would croon “She Will Be Loved” by Maroon 5 off-key and get mad at people who happen to be leaving the bar during their performance.
13. Grimer would be a white guy doing Wiz Khalifa. He will butcher it. Everyone will be uncomfortable.
12. Weepinbell would do a Disney song and it will suck.
11. Jynx would dedicate her song to her boyfriend and then do a very warbly rendition of “Landslide” and it’ll make the crowd confused and uncomfortable for just a whole bunch of different reasons
10. Magikarp would do a very slow, 5-minute song that nobody’s ever heard of. It has a full minute of guitar solo played by a MIDI keyboard that Magikarp just stands on stage nodding along to. There is still a whole chorus to go.
9. Ditto would do a song that somebody else has already done earlier that night, obviously.
8. Jigglypuff would be hella shitfaced and do “Sugar, We’re Going Down” but would only actually scream the choruses and either doesn’t know or is too drunk to pay attention to the verses. Jigglypuff really worked up the crowd first, so it will be a huge disappointment when you realize what’s going on.
7. Articuno will do “Born in the USA” and some people will be extremely into it and some people will be extremely not into it.
6. Koffing will throw everyone for a loop and do a surprisingly touching rendition of a Phoebe Bridgers song, but it will bring the mood down.
5. The Bulbasaur that are actually Ditto would do “Piano Man”. Everyone will roll their eyes, but get really into it. The crowd is all singing along by the end of it.
4. Pikachu is reluctantly dragged on stage by their friend to do Lady Gaga’s parts of “Shallow” with them. It turns out they’re a breathtakingly good singer, but they don’t like to show off. A bunch of men try to buy them a drink at the bar afterward, but Pikachu doesn’t drink. Pikachu leaves the bar to go home at 10pm on the dot.
3. Victreebell would do a terrifyingly metal rendition of Britney Spears’ “Toxic”. It will work astoundingly well.
2. Muk would do Biggie Smalls’ “Big Poppa” and it will slap.
1. Pikachu Riding Articuno would be the equivalent of Carly Rae Jepsen showing up at your local bar for no reason, singing “Cut To The Feeling”, politely waving to the stunned crowd, and leaving. No one will ever believe you when you say this happened.
I’ve been in a perpetual process of self-discovery for about the last decade. I sat in a course I was taking at the time in college, reading an article about the experience of transgender and nonbinary people in Japan, and at that moment something clicked in my head, and I’ve spent the better part of 10 years trying to deny it with various success.
And if you have ever tried to do coursework while also dealing with the revelation that you are likely not the gender you were assigned at birth, it is not easy!
I’ve never been a particularly self-aware person, and so my feelings about anything about myself have been hard to say so far, making this a weird and hard post to write. I’ve been on a journey of self-discovery lately, and like most of the things in my life it’s led me precisely nowhere.
Okay, that’s not necessarily true. It’s led me somewhere, which is a place I didn’t really think I’d be at and, if I’m being honest, which I’m being with strangers on the internet for some reason, it’s a particularly scary one. I don’t like existing in a way where I stand out, I don’t like existing in a way where I feel the need to explain myself. I am nervous just writing this blog post knowing that someone could, with knowledge of my partner in playlists here, pretty easily determine who I am in Real Life™. I don’t like this because it feels like, in a world where most people have the answers to these questions, I still don’t, and even if I do have those answers, the reality is one that opens me up to a life of rejection, hate, and struggle.
But the thought of living a life as a lie is harder one, and the thought that maybe if things are kinda tough for me, they might be easier for someone else like me one day is certainly a nice one.
I don’t have the answers yet. But I feel like I’m getting closer.
Anyways, here is Gender Euphoria, a playlist I made for the moments where I can see a future where I’m comfortable looking in the mirror. They’re still pretty rare, but they feel wonderful when they happen, and I want to share that with you all. This is actually an extremely personal playlist as it’s one that’s sat on my own spotify account for a long time (with some exceptions. My personal one has “Man, I Feel Like a Woman” by Shania Twain on it, and I was NOT going to subject you all to that). But with the one day my cloaking field deactivates being tomorrow [ed. note after checking the date and doubling checking how long this draft has been in my inbox: whoops], I wanted to share with you all a playlist that imagines a slightly better tomorrow, and to share with everyone out there feeling a similar way a moment in time where maybe things feel a little better.
Some of these songs are a little less than euphoric but part of my specific euphoria is imagining a world where I feel like celebrating my journey so here we are.
Also, this playlist currently has the second most Carly Rae Jepsen of any Trash Garbage playlist and if you are wondering why, I have prepared a helpful guide:
I Hate Summer
finally, a trash garbage playlist with Tegan and Sara, Fucked Up, and ska in it and we insist it actually works.
now, sure, it’s a little different here in the year of our lord 2020, but summer is the worst season. this is a playlist of songs for joyously fuming about how it’s too fucking hot right now. this is a bunch of mostly party-pleasing mostly pop and rock that wouldn’t be out of place at a rooftop or backyard gathering that it’s too hot for and no one is paying particularly close attention to how you kind of fucked up the music. it’s kind of mellow, but it’s pretty fun about it. (aliens-mostly.gif) it’s about two hours, which is probably how long it’ll take for someone else to insist they take over the music.
it’s just rap and carly rae jepsen
i literally cannot explain this any more