Wednesday, June 24, 2015

New songs for June 24th, 2015

here they are:

“Happy In the Sorrow Key” by Indigo Girls: If it were up to Amy Ray, The Indigo Girls might have been more influenced by punk than folk. She kinda sorta got her way with The Indigos’ “Shame On You” in the mid ‘90s, but so far, it hasn’t happened since. Until now, that is. “Happy In the Sorrow Key” is neither happy nor sorrowful, but it’s got plenty of grit. It is a surprisingly raw, rocking song for the duo. Amy’s love of bands like Husker Du, The Jam, and (especially) The Pretenders has finally paid off!!

“Once A Day” by Michael Franti and Spearhead: Michael Franti could be likened to a modern day Bob Marley, and no, it’s not just because of the influence of reggae can be heard in his music (after all, Franti also has plenty of influence from rock, folk, soul, and jazz as well). It’s also because Franti is just as much an advocate of social justice as he is for the feeling of being loved. Where Marley said, “Could you be loved? Then be loved”, Franti picks up where Marley left off with a message just as universal and affectionate, “Everybody oughta hug somebody at least once a day”. Michael, I must say, I agree with you on this one, very much! Love, be loved, and stay loved!

“The Ghosts of Beverly Drive” by Death Cab for Cutie: This might just be one of the most rocking songs Death Cab have ever attempted. Sure, they have incorporated the use of electric guitars into their music on more than one occasion, but the catchiness of the rhythm and the fuzziness of the guitar are not common elements in DCFC’s music. This does not mean that “The Ghosts of Beverly Drive” is a happy song, though, it isn’t, but it is more upbeat than their usual material. Musically, it almost seems like a slightly calmer and less solo driven version of The Police’s “Synchronicity II”. Finally, the lyrics are still trademark Death Cab, with clever but thoughtful lines like, “You wanna teach but not be taught”, and “I wanna sell but not be bought”.

Wednesday, June 17, 2015

New songs for June 17th 2015

here they are:

"Dreams" by Beck: After two melancholy singles (and an entirely melancholy album), Beck has now decided to up the energy on his tunes once again, musically channeling both David Byrne and Prince in the process! Don't be fooled by the song's "dream"-y title, heheh. Most songs with the title "Dreams" are rather bittersweet (I'm looking at you, Fleetwood Mac and Cranberries). This one is most certainly not. It's basically funk from outer space. It's like someone went to the moon and put a dance floor there! Forget about walking on the moon. It's time for bouncin' and bumpin' on the moon, now!

"Let It Happen" by Tame Impala: Even MORE funk from outer space!! This time, the "space" factor is increased in this 7-minute sprawl of a song from the same guys who brought you the Black Keys-meets-Pink Floyd jam, "Elephant". "Let It Happen" is an apt title for Tame Impala's latest song, as that is exactly what they do here! They just "let it happen". Whatever goes, goes! Fade-ins, fade-outs. Rock 'n' roll, disco, dance, funk,'s all here! Get ready for a wild ride!

"Somewhere Under Heaven" by Tom Petty: Our last song of the week isn't funky or weird, but it still rocks! After all, this IS a Tom Petty song. Specifically, this one rocks in the same way Petty might have during the '80s, with its similarity to some of the more jangly, Byrds-y Petty tracks like "The Waiting". I strongly suspected this was an outtake from one of his '80s albums, but it's actually from a decade later. It's a "missing" track from his mid-'90s album, "Wildflowers". This song kinda sounds like what you might expect to hear from a song with the word "heaven" in its title. It shimmers and sparkles throughout with its shiny, glistening wall of Rickenbacker guitars. Enough to satisfy both the mellower and rougher sides of Petty's catalog!

Wednesday, June 10, 2015

New songs for June 10th, 2015

here they are:

“No No No” by Beirut: “No No No”, you say? “Yes Yes Yes” is more like it! This especially applies to people who were fans of Beirut before they made their first big splash on the adult alt airwaves with the decidedly pop-ier “Santa Fe”. “No No No” sounds like a French lounge song set to a reggae beat. Beirut have become well known to indie fans for mixing folk, rock, electronica, and lounge jazz, so I’m sure their primary audience will be pleased with “No No No”. Honestly, though, I don’t think “Santa Fe” was that bad either.

“Rescue Me” by Amy Helm: It was not too long ago that Levon Helm, drummer for the legendary Canadian folk-rock group, The Band, experienced a tragic death. Thankfully, Levon’s daughter, Amy, is there to carry on the Helm legacy. “Rescue Me”, Amy’s first big song, shows how her dad’s influence might have rubbed off on her. It is a passionate cry for love that seamlessly blends folk, rock, soul, and gospel, kinda like The Band did.

Wednesday, June 3, 2015

New songs for June 3rd, 2015

here they are:

"Satisfy Me" by Anderson East: People like James Hunter, St. Paul and The Broken Bones, and JJ Grey and Mofro have all proved in recent years that R & B and the blues are genres that transcend race. The latest blues singin' white dude on the rise is Anderson East, whose song "Satisfy Me" is likely to do just that! Anderson brings in both the passion and the grit of '60s R & B into his debut song, as well as raw gutsy vocals and an earthy, sensual delivery of the lyrics. The only thing that is not satisfying about this song is that it's only 2 and a half minutes long. We wanna hear more!

"Someone New" by Hozier: Hozier is certainly NOT "someone new" by now. "Take Me to Church" let everyone know who he was, and he had two more hit songs after that one. It is rare to achieve four hits or more off of a single album these days, but Hozier has now managed to do so! Interesting that both this song and the last one have that "white guy singing the blues" vibe to them. Of the four songs Hozier has put out as singles so far, "Someone New" is probably the most upbeat, as most of his songs sound rather melancholy in comparison. The lyrics are pretty much trademark Hozier, with its "forbidden love" theme. Towards the end, he makes a pun on the word "stranger", using the word initially as a noun, and later as a superlative adjective. This man is truly a rarity in this day and age, but a darn good one nonetheless!