College Countdown: 90FM’s Top 90 of 1996, 74 and 73

74. The Reverend Horton Heat, It’s Martini Time

It’s Martini Time is the fourth album billed to the Reverend Horton Heat, which is the name of a band and kinda sorta the name of the band leader. Jim Heath is known far and wide (well, maybe just “known” is the better way to put it) as the good reverend, leading the group through fiery rockabilly that has a touch of classic hard rock to it. There’s also a devilish, slightly bawdy quality to many of their best known songs. At 90FM, the first dispatches from Horton Heat arrived at roughly the same time as those from another questionably credentialed man of the cloth, so I’ll admit I had difficulty parsing one from the other for a time. Horton Heat has had more endurance (and a higher profile), helped along, no doubt, by the occasionally resurgence of music that can appropriately accompany old timey dancing. And college kids are, of course, always amenable to playing songs about boozy misbehavior.

73. Various Artists, Trainspotting soundtrack

I would have absolutely expected this one to be higher on the list, especially since the deejay staff of 90FM clearly had no prejudice against soundtracks, as will be ludicrously evident once we get to the upper reaches of the chart. I don’t know if their ardor was cooled because many of the best songs on the disc were old favorites or if a lack of recognition steered people relatively clear of the release. Trainspotting is a cult classic now, but it was strictly art house fare at the time of it’s original U.S. release. It probably didn’t play in little, lovely Stevens Point, Wisconsin. I’m sure that plenty of Central Wisconsin college kids could recite Renton’s litany with vigor within the next couple of years, but in the summer of ’96, the Trainspotting soundtrack may have still been an odd commodity. Then again, making it anywhere onto the list is reasonably impressive, so maybe I’m overthinking it. Regardless, the Trainspotting soundtrack was successful enough in all quarters that it merited a sequel CD a little more than a year later.

An Introduction
–90 and 89: Antichrist Superstar and Three Snakes and One Charm
–88 and 87: No Code and Unplugged
–86 and 85: Greatest Hits Live and Gilded Stars and Zealous Hearts
–84 and 83: To the Faithful Departed and God’s Good Urges
–82 and 81: Billy Breathes and Sweet F.A.
–80 and 79: The Process and Test for Echo
–78 and 77: Supersexy Swingin’ Sounds and Breathe
–76 and 75: Bob Mould and Walking Wounded

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