Category Archives: Music

DJ curated music blog featuring new music, old music, good music, weird music, your music, my music, or whatever.

SONG OF THE DAY: Queen – Don’t Stop Me Now

This might be one of the most “feel-good” songs ever recorded… but don’t take my word for it:

Proof

(While the validity of this study is highly questionable, I still think it’s a pretty damn fun song)

 

 

Song of the Day- Radiohead- “Life in a Glasshouse”

Radiohead’s fifth and often-overlooked album, Amnesiac, boasts a hidden gem. “Life in a Glasshouse”, one of my favorite songs, opens with a heavy, discordant piano riff that sets an anxious tone. Yorke, accompanied by horns, sings the first verse with palpable strain and exhaustion, using the metaphor of the glasshouse to communicate his struggle with the media and the maddening lack of privacy that comes with fame. If Yorke seems to be on the verge of a mental breakdown during the verse, by the chorus he sings as though he has been pushed off the edge. As the horns burst in at full volume, both his voice and his lyrics become crazed, forceful, and bitingly sarcastic. The jazzy, New Orleans-esque big band sound distinguishes this track form the rest of the album, and helps to build an emotional intensity that never fails to impact me.

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SONG OF THE DAY: Beach House – Master Of None

 

It may be 10 years old but Master of None by Beach House is definitely still worth a listen. Tucked away in the middle of their eponymous debut album, this piece has stuck around, racking up the plays. With a simple yet almost harsh opening, Master of None then slides into a full-on dream pop piece, complete with the haunting vocals that have become a Beach House staple.

SONG OF THE DAY: Drugdealer – “Suddenly (feat. Weyes Blood) “

“Suddenly” (feat. Weyes Blood) off of Drugdealer’s new album, The End of Comedy is one of my favorites at the moment. With a unique tempo and hummy, melodic sound it gets better every time I listen. If the cool cover art doesn’t get you, know that the album was recorded at many locations, one of them being Mac DeMarco’s house in NY. Do it for Mac.

 

SONG OF THE DAY: What Up, English – By The Way You Look

Most of us would be lying if we said we knew every artist on the Llama lineup, if only because of this little band from Nashville. Made up of college seniors at Bowdoin, Vanderbilt, Tulane, and UVA, What Up, English is a rock group formed in 2011 known for their catchy guitar hooks and highly danceable tunes. I highly recommend a quick perusal of their Bandcamp page – all of their available discography can be found there.

This track has particularly infectious riffs. Give it a listen, or two, or three, and get ready to dance next Saturday afternoon to this and other jams from What Up, English.

 

 

SONG OF THE DAY: Mellowhigh – Mellowhigh (Prod. by Larry Fisherman)

A friend recently turned me on to a series by Mass Appeal called Rhythm Roulette. Producers are blindfolded and choose three random vinyls that they use to craft a beat. The videos are fascinating and do a good job artfully translating the passion and creativity contained within the minds of some of hip-hop’s biggest names. Rhythm Roulette belies a larger trend in hip-hop of producers gaining significant followings and at times even eclipsing the popularity of mainstay rappers. Some highlights of the series include:

9th wonder

Big Krit (raps a verse as well on this one)

Mac Miller (still lived at his dad’s house when this was filmed)

Mac Miller dons the magic of his character, Larry Fisherman, and cooks up a particularly unique beat in this episode. Fisherman has fallen off the map as of late, but there are some underrated songs floating around produced by Miller’s whimisically named alter-ego. One of these such songs is “Mellowhigh” which he produced for the OF duo, Hodgy Beats and Left Brain. The beat on this track lays low for the first 1:55 of the song and then kicks off its shoes and starts kicking you in the face after that. In the age of the soundbite, popular artists have taken to manufacturing songs that grab the listener from the first moments of the song. Mellowhigh and Fisherman employ a more understated approach on this song and the result is a complex hip-hop track worthy of at least a couple of listens.

SONG OF THE DAY: The Uncluded – TV on 10

A catchy-as-fuck, gritty lil indie-rap crossover to push you through these bizarre late April snows and off-white skies. Also great if you’ve been meaning to get more into rap, but your search list kinda ran dry after you found Childish Gambino

Song of the Day: The United States of America – The American Metaphysical Circus

This song is from one of my favorite albums. The man behind it, Joseph Byrd, moved from New York (where he was studying under John Cage) to Los Angeles in late 1963. So he did what anyone would do: he joined the Communist party, started an experimental rock band, and called the band The United States of America. Byrd wanted the project to be “an avant-garde political/musical rock group with the idea of combining electronic sound, musical/political radicalism, and performance art.” So, it being the 60s and all, the band was signed to a major label.

Gone are the days of major labels signing experimental psychedelic bands self described as politically radical. But damn, I’m glad those days happened. Like so many of the best psych bands from the 60s, The United States of America only recorded one album. Soon after the album released, the band broke up. Still, they left behind an explosive, cutting edge record. This track is the first on the album, and it really sets the tone for the record. Unlike most psychedelic bands at the time, the band had no guitar player. Instead, Byrd and company relied on strings, bass, keyboards and most notably electronics. Any late 60s band that uses primitive hand-built synthesizers and ring modulators is right up my alley, and Byrd’s use of electronics is exceptional.  He seamlessly incorporates avant-garde influences to his music, which is experimental but still catchy and very melodic. Dorothy Moskowitz’s singing is mesmerizing and fits the band perfectly. Gordon Marron gets a crazy range of tones on his violin, from overdriven lead guitar to 19th century classical. This song, like the whole album, is a trip. Dig it.

Song of the day: This Must Be The Place (Naive Melody) –– Talking Heads

I’ve been listening to a bunch of cover albums lately, and quite often covers of this song come up (this one’s a good one –– https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6qWJPglDkB0), and I usually love them. Today, though, the original came on the radio and I remembered how fucking fantastic this song is. “Home is where I want to be/but I guess I’m already there” is weirdly resonant.

Hopefully I’m not alone in thinking that David Byrne is a genius, but even if you’re not a big fan of Talking Heads, I’ve found that even those (foolish) people who aren’t usually into Talking Heads still love this song, so definitely worth a listen.

Song of the Day: Woods – Can’t See It All

Woods has been one of the most consistent bands over the past decade, releasing one solid lo-fi psych-folk record after another on lead vocalist/songwriter Jeremy Earl’s Woodsist label. That being said, Woods usually never deviates far from their roots. While Woods has never dropped a downright bad album, the band has certainly become predictable. Or so I thought. Woods new record, City Sun Eater in the River of Light (review comin’ soon, maybe) is Woods’ most adventurous and experimental record to date. Here, Woods explores some new territory, with prevalent reggae and jazz influences. “Can’t See It All” is a prime example of this stylistic shift, and the results are fantastic. Like any Woods song, lead singer Jeremy Earl delivers his vocals in his instantly recognizable falsetto. The wah-wah lead guitar and organ with gentle vibrato that kick off the track are uncharacteristic for Woods, but are very welcome changes. The organs give this track a dubby feel, reminiscent of Lee Perry or The Upsetters, and the creeping, ominous synth lead is almost Residents-like. This is a much more electrified, inspired, and ambitious song for Woods: textured, vibrant, psychedelic and catchy. Dig it.