Best Jukebox - 2010
Kill Your Idol
Everyone at Kill Your Idol was coupled off, but not Henry. He sat alone at the end of the bar, and from the look on his face, the night wasn't going so well. But then he snapped out of his Pabst stupor and his eyes shone bright. He pointed in the air and shouted, "This is my song. I played this!" Neutral Milk Hotel's "Holland, 1945" was blaring on the jukebox. It was the song Henry used to blast in his bedroom with the door closed when he was only 16. Although technically alone, Henry was deeply in love. He was smitten with Fireball, the glowing, red-hot vintage juke in the corner. Deep inside its guts were all the songs that could carry him away from the present loneliness. Other jukeboxes didn't satisfy; they were empty shells of flashing lights that merely streamed MP3s. Fireball was stocked with actual CDs that contained personalized playlists chosen by Miami music makers and lovers. Local band Astari Nite included fellow Miami musician MillionYoung on its mix. Hood Songs, the CD by writer John Hood, contained everything from Tom Waits to Ice T, with a wildcard Fiona Apple thrown in. Deep cuts from throwbacks such as VNV Nation and MC5 were mixed thoughtfully in with current favorites Surfer Blood and the XX. Losing more dollar bills than at a strip club, Henry couldn't take his eyes off Fireball — that is, until he caught a glimpse of the Playboy pinball machine in the other corner.