here they are:
"Got It All (This Can't Be Living Now)" by Portugal. The Man: Thought maybe this was from the same album as their Fall 2010 hit, "People Say", but apparently this is on an album that hasn't been released yet! Guess the soul-meets-alternative vibes of "People Say" were THAT popular!! In "Got It All...", Portugal. The Man continue with the same brand of feel-good indie music they started off with. The falsetto vocals in the chorus seem like a distinguishing, important feature of this song, as they are not only part of what makes this song so fun for me to listen to, but also what could set it apart from being mistaken for a Modest Mouse or Vampire Weekend song.
"Me And Lazarus" by Iron & Wine: The "neo-psychedelic" vibes of this song seem to pick up where the more mellow, folk-y vibes of their previous hit (and their biggest, so far), "Tree By the River" left off. It has factors that most IAW songs don't have. For instance, a sax solo in the middle of the song that seems to be inspired by some of the songs that '60s rock band Traffic often put into their music, as well as some electronic sounding instruments that sound like they'd be more at home on a video game than a song. The rubbery distortion of the electric guitar on this song does a great job of setting "Me And Lazarus" apart from other IAW songs (which, for the most part, lack electric guitars and rely more on acoustic guitars). If you long for the days of psych-rock masterpieces like The Beatles' "Tomorrow Never Knows" and Traffic's "Paper Sun", then please give "Me And Lazarus" a nice, solid listen!
"Perfume" by Old '97s: On this track, Rhett Miller and co take a breather from the fast, driving rock 'n' roll sound of their previous hit, "Every Night Is Friday Night (Without You)". "Perfume" sounds more like the typical '97s song, with its somewhat country-fied indie sound. The chord progression in this song seems to have become rather cliche now in rock music (the same type of progression gets used on The Beatles' "Let It Be" and Oasis' "Don't Look Back In Anger"), but the rhythm of the song is one that doesn't get used very often in the genre, and I also really like the subtle, tinkly piano sound sprinkled within the chorus of the song.
"So Beautiful Or So What" by Paul Simon: The lyrical content of this song seems rather abstract upon first listen, but such is the beauty of this song! It seems to be a bunch of "slice of life" stories rolled into a single song. As for the music? Well, I think that's what drives this song more than anything! It's very rhythmic, with its staccato beat pulsating through the drums and guitar throughout the song, so it's very easy to get stuck in your head. Having heard this song and his other big song of 2011, "The Afterlife", I'd say Paul Simon's latest album could very well qualify as being called a "sequel" to his 1986 magnum opus, "Graceland".