Glorious July of New Music

So, I was listening to the new releases a couple of weeks ago, the Friday when Vance Joy’s “Lay It On Me” came out, and I kept Ooooh-ing and Aaaah-ing and OMG-ing at all the great songs. It’s pretty late, so I’m just going to list them.

Foster The People just released their album Sacred Hearts Club, which is full of sweet, sweet songs. Here’s “Static Space Lover”

Good Old War – “Part of Me”

The Lone Bellow – “Walk Into A Storm”
OMG, this song… THIS SONG.

The Jungle Giants – “Used To Be In Love”
Changing it up a little bit, there’s this ear-worm. The lyrics sound straight up out of the movie about my life. Guys, stop it, you’re making me laugh at my own love life.

Cold War Kids – “Love On The Brain”
OK, I know this one was released earlier this year, but it just captured my heart about a week ago, AND HAVE YOU HEARD THIS VERSION?! You also want to listen to the Los Feliz Blvd version of “Can We Hang On?” I am ready to see Cold War Kids with Young The Giant in August. My heart is already melting. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IB9zxVwPr-E
Vevo, you heartless jerks, why don’t you let me embed the video here?!

And, to the surprise of none of the readers of this blog, I leave you with
Vance Joy – “Lay It On Me”

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Between Pineapples and Summer Sounds

Over a week ago I bought three pineapples. The store had them on sale at 99 cents and I got excited, so I got some good-looking green pineapples. I get easily excited about things like that… you know, delicious and juicy. But now they are all ripe. All at once. And I have been making pineapple smoothies, made my first pineapple upside down cake, grilled pineapple for a burger, have had it with yogurt, alone, and with bananas. I still have one more pineapple to go. I can do this!

But talking about delicious and juicy, this Summer has been so good when it comes to music. I have seen more shows than I can afford and have been blessed with a great amount of new music. There are some that have been on heavy repeat for me, so I’m going to share some with you.

“Midnight Lorry” by Dispatch
My Sandy Beats partner in music @DocMurda posted Dispatch’s “Painted Yellow Lines”before I could get to it, so I am posting “Midnight Lorry,” another song of theirs that made it to my Summer list. I first fell in love with State Radio, the other band that Chadwick Stokes had put together, at my first Wakarusa in 2010. It was such a memorable performance. I didn’t know any of the songs, but the passion of the fans at the front row and the energy of the band was so contagious. I left that festival a bit obsessed with them (and with John Butler Trio, who played later that same night.) So even though my first love was State Radio, I came to love Chadwick Stokes’ solo work and then Dispatch.
Ugh, ya’ll, I want to see them live. But they haven’t made it anywhere close to me since that State Radio show at Wakarusa.

“Sedona” by Houndmouth
Hey Lil Hollywood, I am super excited to see Houndmouth at Loufest this year. I have, allegedly, already seen them live, but I don’t remember. Maybe I was too overwhelmed with the beauty of Red Rocks and excited about seeing The Head and The Heart and I didn’t really pay attention to the first opener, OK? Or maybe I was busy watching someone hit on a nurse from Ohio or whatever, or enjoying the piece of chocolate that the nurse’s friend had just given me. Anyway, I will enjoy Houndmouth at Loufest like it’s the first time I see them. Also, this song has been on repeat one a lot in the last couple of weeks.

“Staring” by Tipling Rock
This song came up in one of the last couple of my Spotify discover playlists and it got me. It’s so catchy! I added it to my Summer 2017 playlist and it’s been on repeat-one this afternoon.
Tipling Rock is a Boston-based Indie Rock band that just sounds like Summer to me.

“Where’d All The Time Go?” by Dr. Dog
There are two Dr. Dog songs that I’ve had on heavy rotation the last few weeks of intense Southern Nevada heat, “Heart It Races (Dr. Dog Version)” and “Where’d All The Time Go?”
The first one that caught my attention was “Heart it Races,” which sounds like some kind of mix of a lot of music I like. I checked out the original song by Architecture in Helsinki, and while I also liked it and it sounds like I could paint with it on repeat, I like the Dr. Dog version better. The fact that I was so drawn to this song was surprising and amusing, because I’ve own a TON of Dr. Dog music since around 2010, but I never really liked it. I think I never gave it a fair change, but I remember listening to a few songs and just not wanting anything to do with them. And then I found “Where’d All The Time Go?” which I played over and over during a night of painting two weeks ago. I was feeling all the feelings that night and leaving it on a big canvas that I finally finished.

I have a few other songs on my Summer list, but I think four are enough for now. I have to shower to go to dinner, so there.

Late Nights & Music Videos

Music videos are one of my most favorite things. No, I am not just talking about videos from my youth that changed the way I “saw” music. I still see “Black Hole Sun” from Soundgarden or “Today” from Smashing Pumpkins when I dream at night and the KLF videos still live with me everyday the strangeness that they exuded. I know this may be shocking, but artists and bands still make music videos. I know they are not played on MTV anymore, but there is still a market. And its not just Americans (rather it is probably mostly not Americans) who watch these videos. Now some of them are straightforward and boring. But others are works of art. Maybe because they are no longer being shown on MTV and VH1, artists (and directors) can be free to experiment with their story telling. The quality of some of these by relatively unknown bands is exceptional because we all have high tech cameras and editing software. However, the fancy equipment is not the only thing great about these videos. The emotions that a video can evoke, the changed meaning of a song, these and other visuals can completely make or break a song (in my opinion).  I often watch videos late into the night when I am already open to feeling and sometimes I come across a video that just blows me away.

Earlier this week I was listening to new music from some of the bands that have releases in the next few months. I had previously been familiar with Atlanta based Manchester Orchestra partially through a friend and through their relationship with Frightened Rabbit. They have been around for a while and have a pretty deep catalog. Their style is not easily defined ranging from harder indie rock to straight folk. If the first single, “The Alien”, off their upcoming record A Black Mile to the Surface is any indication, this album may be a bit more folky. When I first heard “The Alien” I liked the song and it really got me excited for the new record. When I watched the video for “The Alien”, I was blown away. It struck me as very different, very beautiful and it added an entire new layer to the song (see it below).

Chance The Rapper’s Coloring Book

Chance The Rapper won my heart last year at Wakarusa, and I’ve been following him since then. So it was a huge disappointment when he released his most recent album, Coloring Book, and I didn’t have access to it. The album was released two weeks ago, and it was exclusively streaming on Apple Music.

Well, the wait is over! Head over to SoundCloud and listen. I’m already on the third listen and it’s so great. Totally lives up to the hype.