(YES, I know it says August and this is October. That’s the idea. I want to give the music time to sink in and make a lasting impression.)
There’s this thing called the “Indie Rock Playlist” that I’ve been downloading for a couple of years or so. Part of me wants to keep it to myself. Part of me wants everyone to hear it. The latter part won this time and I’m not sure I can keep shut up about it ever again.
This guy named .. well.. let’s leave his name out of it for now in case there’s any reason whatsoever that revealing who he is in just the wrong place and time could somehow end up making it more difficult for him to continue.
.. THIS GUY puts a playlist together every month. He most likely works in radio, because he gets a LOT of stuff early. It’s all new or very recent music. It varies in style wildly, which is wonderful because these playlists can be pretty tedious when every track sounds just like the one before it.
It typically has 120 tracks on it. And since I have a player that has only 2 gigs of storage (it’s a wonderful player, but just lacks storage space), I end up having to pare it down quite a bit before it reaches my player.
Now, I’m no expert on what’s good or what’s not. Not even close. But I do love to hear new things and I believe I can distinguish uniqueness from rehashes and sound-alikes. Not that I dislike revivals, I just like it best when it’s blended with new flavors and colors. Since I have this blog thing here, I thought it might be a nice way to introduce a few people to music they have not heard before. Music that stands out as unique or interesting. I hear a lot of people around me complain about how there’s just no good new music anymore. Part of this is an addiction to nostalgia, part of it is resistance to change, part of it is the lack of radio play for newer, riskier artists. We all know the music “industry” is having a bad time right now, and honestly they’ve had it coming for a long time. Greed and cowardice have finally caught up to them with the karma train and the passengers are departing. It’s about time. But we are far overdue for a revolution. It’s around the corner, we just need to push it a bit.
So let’s get it on. Every month now, I’m going to post a list of “what’s left” after a couple of weeks alone with the Playlist of the month. Since it’s too soon for the current one, I’m starting with August because that’s been reduced down to the few tracks that I cannot let go of. The ones that I cannot delete. The ones that threaten to force me to buy a larger mp3 player.
If you like these tracks, I hope you’ll seek out the artists and purchase their music directly from them. In most cases, the albums are fantastic. Since direct links to mp3s could not be found (and may be frowned upon), I’m doing my best to find YouTube material directly related to the tracks on the playlist. In cases where I could not find the chosen tracks, I’ve replaced them with videos for other songs from the same or previous albums.
Hopefully these are not embed links. Just click the links to go to the youtube page for that track.
Track 07 – Lykke Li – Breaking It Up.
This is one of the cases when the video may just slightly spoil the experience of the song. Not that she’s unattractive or anything like that. It’s just that the video adds something to the song that takes it away from the visuals I created in my own head. It “pops” it up a bit much and sucks the indie right out of it, in my humble opinion. But the song itself, it’s still got something that I can’t quite put my finger on that just works.
Track 120 – Fleet Foxes – Your Protector
Could only find a live performance of this one on youtube, but it’s pretty darned impressive. This song remained on my player because I just love the large sound of it all. I had no clue they would look so hippie-like. This is one I must find on CD and purchase. The other tracks I’ve heard from them are just as good and I can’t wait to catch up on everything they’ve recorded.
Track 48 – Captain – Keep and Open Mind
This may be the catchiest track I’ve heard in years. Pop goodness at it’s bestest. I have seen the future of pop and it’s name is… oh forget that crap… just listen. It’s an infection. I mean… infectuous.
Track 49 – Sunny Day Sets Fire – Lack of View
This track puts me in a great mood when I hear it and makes me feel like I’m floating in pudding. Vanilla pudding with chocolate sprinkles to be exact. No idea why, it just works on that level. Sue me. But since there seems to be no video promotional material for this track, I present to you a fan made video for an old Bee Gees song…
Just kidding. Here’s one of their other great songs:
Track 61 – Biffy Clyro – Mountains
Love the way this song starts one way and then becomes something else. In a way, it kind of becomes something less. But it stuck with me and it’s not bad. But I must point out that I seriously dislike “hammy” videos. In spite of this, great song. This is craftsmanship.
Track 78 – Mercury Rev – Snowflake in a Hot World
Chances are, you’ve probably heard of Mercury Rev, if not everything on this little list. But you have the best chance of recognizing these guys more than the others. This track is, I think, one of their best in a long time. And based on the below video, I’d love to catch them live. You may feel some similarities to the Lips here, and maybe for good reason. Dave Fridmann (their bass player) has produced the most well known and recent Flaming Lips albums. Their guitarist was in the Lips for two albums as well. Could not find a promotional video for this one and it’s just as well, because this was a great live performance that was captured.
(I suggest watching in high quality, since the video itself is of questionable quality in the first place.. but not bad for an audience video)
In a few days, I’ll get to the September one. Then it’ll be a while before I review October.