Artist: Bright Eyes
Album: Lifted or The Story Is in the Soil, Keep Your Ear to the Ground
Song: Lover I Don’t Have to Love
I love Conor Oberst so much. I probably heard Bright Eyes for the first time when I was around 20. From that day through present, Oberst has been my favorite singer-songwriter. The English major in me has always appreciated lyricism, and he’s among the very best. This is not really related, but that’s also why I love rap. Words are cool.
This is one of the few songs that both my now-wife and I liked before we started dating. So listening to it now takes me back to those early days. I can only imagine the kind of nostalgia overload I’d get from it if I’d been listening to Bright Eyes in high school. I would have had much cooler hair and probably fashion sense, if I had been.
Try and appreciate his semi-imperfect voice because, like anything in life, things are better when they’re weird. And I think it is the sound of goddamn angels. Swoon.
Album: The Woods
Lucky me, and by extension all of you! Two days in a row my playlist has bestowed on us party songs. If the Gaslight Anthem song from yesterday is a beach party, today’s is a series of flying air guitar kicks at a bar. Both tracks are sung very loudly by me in the car, if it’s at night when no one can see.
Some of you may know Carrie Brownstein from Portlandia. Here is your chance to also know her from playing the shit out a guitar. On vocals, Corin Tucker is one of the greatest voices I’ve ever had the pleasure of blasting my eardrums with. Add in the always awesome and precise percussion from Janet Weiss and you have the perfect candidate for a warm weather driving mix. Your summer playlist has two songs on it now. I am slowly making your year so much better.
Artist: The Gaslight Anthem
Album: Sink or Swim
Song: Boomboxes and Dictionaries
Today, I have been given a wonderful song. This is one of those tracks you can put on while driving 120 miles an hour down the highway at 3 AM in June. As I listen to it while typing this, it’s 14 degrees and snowing. If there’s ever a time this kind of music perks me up, it’s during the horrible black depths of winter.
I love Brian Fallon’s vocals. They make me think of partying drunk at a beach bonfire. In my head, I am holding a beer. Possibly two. Also I’m 20 again and not shy. This is a really specific vision, but that’s how you know it’s good music. If it can make me feel that way in the middle of a New England February, imagine what it would do for you!
I guess I could at least have a drink while listening. Do yourself a favor and join me, won’t you?
Album: Seven’s Travels
Song: Always Coming Back Home to You
TO ALL MY KILLAS AND MY HUNDRED DOLLA BILLAS
TO EMO KIDS WHO GOT TOO MANY FEELINS
Welcome to the inaugural song recommendation post! I was hoping for a song that was a little bit weirder to kick things off, but shuffle has spoken. On the bright side, it’s one of my go-to suggestions to prove to people that rap is great.
Slug is the rapper, Ant is production and Atmosphere is the duo. This song is off of “Seven’s Travels,” which was the first Atmosphere album I ever heard, thanks to a $10 gift certificate to Merle’s Record Rack #rip
It’s a love letter to Slug’s hometown in Minnesota, and the Midwest in general. And the idea of walking through two feet of snow to fight/drink/bone in a parking lot. Sounds fun, no? The beat is one of the prettiest I’ve heard and it really hammers home the idea of loving where you come from. Even if that includes guns and judgmental mothers.
I highly recommend greater exploration of Atmosphere for those unfamiliar with less-than-mainstream rap. They’re the perfect introduction to the wonders of the genre. Just trust me and stop being narrow-minded, you dorks.