I get why most people don’t want to rate the songs in their digital music libraries, but I highly recommend it. I put on the smart playlist of 4-5 start music and I just get hours of my favorite songs from the last 50 years. Incredible.
I adore the frantic heartfelt chorus of “Purexed”. A blast from the relatively-recent past.
For the last 15 (!) years, Kleenex Girl Wonder has been one of the most frustrating bands around. Graham Smith has moments of flooring genius, but twice as many moments of incredibly grating immaturity.
The new album doesn’t reach the same heights as “Why I Write Such Good Songs” or “Tendency Right Foot Forward”, but neither does it sink to the same depths as most of the Smith album. “Diffenbachia” may not have the jaw-dropping wordplay of Smith’s best work, but it still gets some gut-wrenching rock moments in there.
In all the talk surrounding the 20 year (!) reissue of the Breeders’ Last Splash, it’s surprising that not many people have mentioned what a great record The Amps’ Pacer is. Maybe no one wants to get distracted from revisiting “Cannonball” and an album that was perpetually in the used bins of every CD store, but they should, because in a lot of ways, this is more enjoyable as a full album.
While I’m sure I’ll go into my late-life love for Veronica Falls many more times in the lifespan of this blog, I’m going to take a second to jot down what I always think during my favorite Veronica Falls songs: they remind me of this one, a wistful rocker from DC indiepoppers Aden. This song destroys me as much as is did in 1999: weaving, brilliant guitar lines and world-weary vocals. A stunner.
Putting Friend & Lover’s “Reach Out Of The Darkness” at the very end of last week’s Mad Men seemed really heavy-handed, coming as it did over the new of RFK’s assassination. But as obvious as the irony is, I actually really liked the contrast between the political volatility of the time with the heavily-marketed pop music of the time. You can see Don Draper or Ted Chaough pitching it: “People want to feel good. They’re nervous about the way the world is changing, and they want to be comforted. They want to know that this upheaval will ultimately make the world a better place.”
See if you can get your head around this one: the chorus of the new Vampire Weekend song “Step” is lifted from Souls of Mischief’s “Step To My Girl”, which in itself is lifted from the Grover Washington Jr song “Aubrey”, which is a cover of a song by Bread.
“Step” is kind of the ultimate Vampire Weekend song. It’s kind of annoying in a way—yet another Pachelbel’s Canon rip; more rich-guy lyrics—but like all Vampire Weekend songs, it succeeds wildly in spite of itself, overcoming it’s obvious touch points and turning into a song that goes on repeat.
Bibio’s “Lover’s Carvings” is one of the most beautiful songs I’ve ever heard, which is pretty hard to match, but “À Tout À L’heure” comes close. A beautifully pastoral song with a trippy video, and all of a sudden, I have a new album to look forward to.