Saturday, June 15, 2013

Favorite Songs of 2013 (So Far)

1. Frightened Rabbit-Acts of Man
I have never wanted more to be your man and build a house around you
I am just like all the rest of them: sorry, selfish, trying to improve

2. Phosphorescent-Song For Zula
See honey I am not some broken thing
I do not lay in the dark waiting for thee
No my heart is gold, my feet are light
And I am racing out on the desert plains all night

3. Laura Marling-I Was An Eagle
When we were in love
I was an eagle
And you were a dove

4. Chvrches-Recover
I'll give you one more chance
To say we can change our old ways
And you take what you need
And you know you don't need me

5. Tegan and Sara-Now I'm All Messed Up
Now I'm all messed up
I'm sick inside, wondering where
Where you're leaving your makeup

6. Jim James-Dear One
For this mission we were chosen you and me
One egg that split in two we came to be
The dawn of humanity
We were there
Dear one

7. Rhye-Open
Hmm, but stay, don't close your hands

8. Frightened Rabbit & Manchester Orchestra-Architect
Don't waste your time on me
I'm just an architect; I have built nothing

9. The National-Pink Rabbits
It wasn't like a rain it was more like a sea
I didn't ask for this pain it just came over me
I love a storm, but I don't love lightning
All the waters coming up so fast, that's frightening

10. Frank Turner-Recovery
And on the first night we met you said "Well darling, let's make a deal.
If anybody ever asks us, let's just tell them that we met in jail."
And that's the story that I'm sticking to like a stony-faced accomplice
But tonight I need to hear some truth if I'm ever getting through this.
Yeah you once sent me a letter that said "If you're lost at sea,
Close your eyes and catch the tide my dear and only think of me."
Well darling now I'm sinking and I'm as lost as lost can be
And I was hoping you could drag me up from down here towards my recovery

11. Akron/Family-Until the Morning
I had always wondered how you carried all that grief
I know it wasn't right to saddle you with mine
My life, my identity, I lay them at your feet
And stand here broken in the mirror of your eyes
Until the morning

12. James Blake-Overgrown
I don't wanna be a star
But a stone on the shore
Long door, frame the wall
When everything's overgrown

13. Majical Cloudz-This is Magic
apparently this track isn't on YouTube so enjoy this other great Majical Cloudz track

14. Capital Cities-Safe and Sound
I could fill your cup
You know my river won't evaporate
This world we still appreciate

15. Vampire Weekend-Ya Hey
Through the fire and through the flames
You won't even say your name
Only "I am that I am"
But who could ever live that way?

16. Frightened Rabbit-The Woodpile
Come find me now, where I hide and
We’ll speak in our secret tongues
Will you come back to my corner?
Spent too long alone tonight
Would you come and brighten my corner?
A lit torch to the woodpile, aye

(Okay, look, the album version is perfect, really, but...I've actually grown to enjoy acoustic versions of this song more. Scott Hutchison sings with such an ache and so much emotion that a lot of times, stripped down versions of his songs work better for me.)

17. Phosphorescent-The Quotidian Beasts
I said, "It’s you took your claws you slipped em under my skin"

18. The National-I Should Live in Salt
I should live in salt for leaving you behind

19. Cloud Cult-Good Friend
All I need is a good, good friend
To help me out when I’m burning down
When I’m all stretched out
Thank you for being around 

20. Bell x1-The End is Nigh

Sunday, June 9, 2013

Favorite Records of 2013 (So Far)

Oh, 2013, what am I supposed to do with you? You have been full of disappointment. SO MANY UNDERWHELMING RECORDS!

But I think, or I hope, I can come up with ten records that I have been loving this year. Let's see...

1. Frightened Rabbit-Pedestrian Verse
I'm not going to waste anyone else's time by explaining, once again, how good I think this record is. Go back and read every post I've written this year if you want to know why. Bottom line: it's a well-written, well-produced, enjoyable, dynamic pop-rock record from a band who really gets it.

Favorite Tracks: Acts of Man, The Woodpile, State Hospital.

2. Phosphorescent-Muchacho
Has a more beautiful record been released this year? Lord, this record is stunning. It doesn't seem like much at first but the more you listen, the more these tracks sneak up on you. And then you realize how intricate and detailed it all is.   

Favorite Tracks: Song for Zula, The Quotidian Beasts,  Sun, Arise!.

3. Majical Cloudz-Imposter
Just like the first two records on this list, this one came out of nowhere. But at least I knew of Phosphorescent and was technically already a FR fan but I hadn't heard of Majical Cloudz until a few days before this record was released. And I was hooked from the start. Devon Walsh's voice is magnificent, the lyrics are great, and it's yet another record whose intricacies slowly reveal themselves and eventually blow you away.

Favorite Tracks: This Is Magic, Mister, Chilhood Endz.

4. Laura Marling-Once I Was an Eagle
This is only a few weeks old but I can't stop listening to it. I've been a fan of Laura Marling's since her first record and although I find her a bit hit or miss since Alas, I Cannot Swim, this record is a return to form. Dare I say, it's her best. Back in February when I wrote about The Midnight Organ Fight, I mentioned that I had to keep restarting tracks because it was the only way to absorb the great lyrics. I have this problem with this record too. It takes me awhile to listen to one track because I stop and start songs at least three times. Laura Marling's music has always been far more mature than her years but on Once I Was An Eagle, her songwriting is so strong and confident.

Favorite Tracks: I Was An Eagle, You Know, Breathe.

5. James Blake-Overgrown
Jame Blake has the voice of an angel.

Favorite Tracks: Overgrown, Retrograde, DLM.

6. Jim James-Regions of Light and Sound of God
Oh, Jim James. Like I asked previously, is there a more talented, more hard-working, cooler man in indie music? Doubtful. And this record only further proves it.

Favorite Tracks: Dear One, A New Life, Know Til Now.

7. Tegan and Sara-Heartthrob
Like Laura Marling's record, Heartthrob was a return to form for Tegan and Sara. They released the perfect pop record this year and while I was a bit wary at first, it turned out to be a real winner. Sara Quin proved herself to be a fantastic songwriter on this record.

Favorite Tracks: Closer, Now I'm All Messed Up, I'm Not Your Hero.

Huh, I guess I only really love seven records this year. Oh well. But if I had to round it out, I'd put Frank Turner's Tape Deck Heart, The National's Trouble Will Find Me, and Baths' Obsidian. I also liked Cloud Cult's Love. But we have six more months to go; perhaps this year can redeem itself.

Truth be told, I don't think anything is going to top Pedestrian Verse.