I know I’ve posted this song before, though it was a different version, but I honestly could not think of a better song to close out 2014 and bring in 2015. It’s the time of year where everyone tries to make promises to themselves or to others but this is all you need to do ever: “Do the right thing, do it all the time.”
Cheers to one of my favorite bands of all times, Ages and Ages. This version is one of my favorites because they beautifully incorporated their family and friends.
And damn it’s still a magical memory. My saint of a brother drove my best friend and I’s crazy/silly 16 year old selves to see our favorite band in the entire world, The Killers, in Spokane, WA. Incredibly, it was a fairly intimate venue as well, probably held about 250 people. AND, Tegan and Sara, who had just released their debut album, were opening for them. It was April of 2005 and my besty and I were head over heels for anything and everything related to The Killers. I don’t know why they were on my mind last night, but when I was laying in bed and couldn’t sleep, this song came to mind:
I remember they played it at the concert and at that point in time, it was “new” material so we lost our minds when they played it. I have to admit, I’ve lost touch with The Killers’ new material. Their first album, ‘Hot Fuss’, was easily their best work and for me, goes down as one of the best pop/rock albums of that time. After reliving that whole 16-year old experience, I dug out these photos. I couldn’t help it. We waited for them to come out from backstage for about an hour and got our pictures with them…OF COURSE! But that’s not all, we also had them sign our Converse…because we were in high school and what indie rock and roll-loving teenager didn’t have Converse?!
As you can see (hopefully), I’ve said goodbye to the name “Bill Crosley” for the blog. This doesn’t mean I no longer have my record player. This blog is still absolutely inspired by my record player, Bill Crosley, I just decided to give the blog a name that may (hopefully…again) sounds more like a music blog.
Here’s a song to celebrate, because we’re moving on…or “To the Left”:
I did it! With a little help from my favorite frosting buddy (you know who you are!), we frosted all 4 dozen of them, with style. All we had were pastel colors…but I think it works. AND, while making the frosting today, this little diddy came on and a solo dance party around the kitchen ensued:
The above is the official music video for Norwegian DJ, Todd Terje’s newest album, ‘It’s Album Time’, and it’s a good one. All around. The music video is odd, endearing, slightly depressing and so dance-worthy all at the same time. Terje’s house/disco/synth/dance/techno sound isn’t necessarily my style but he’s really good at what he does and “Inspector Norse” is a beauty. Good luck not dancing to this song.
Yesterday I baked 4 dozen cookies while listening to my (hands down) favorite podcast: All Songs Considered and it was the Christmas episode, so I basically couldn’t have been any happier. AND THEN THIS HAPPENED:
Essentially Bob Boilen and Robin Hilton were kidnapped and sent on a super secret mission to outer space where some special musical guests visited them. My favorite addition to the show was the song contributed by Ages and Ages. Everything they do makes me happy. They’re the kindest group of musicians you’ll ever meet and gosh darn are they talented. To hear the entire podcast, click on the spacemen below:
This process is about to begin and I’ve found the most excellent upbeat music that is necessary for frosting dozens of cookies. Yes, I’m taking a break from Christmas music but I’m pretty dang excited about Springtime Carnivore. This gal (Greta Morgan), just released her debut, self-titled album November of this year. She’s only a few months older than myself and she’s already accomplished so much. Not only did she release an entire album, but she played a majority of the instruments herself, besides the bass guitar. Her sweet candy pop and dream rock is well suited for frosting cookies or whatever you might find yourself doing today. Check out this neat music video (image montage) for one of the song “Collectors” off of her album:
I’ll check in later today with some more music and a photographic evidence of dozens of frosted cookies. Wish me luck!
The beauty of vacation is that I can lounge around with a cup of coffee and casually peruse my favorite music sources without haste. This morning I was bouncing around and I stumbled upon the page of a record company out of Tampere, Finland called, Fonal Records. I started listening to their sampler (a playlist of a variety of artists who are signed with them) and my ears perked right up when they fell upon the gentle beauty of Lau Nau. Her breathy voice drew me in and I kept listening. The song on the sampler was “Valolle” off of her most recent album from 2012, ‘Valohiukkanen.’ The song is almost floral (?…I can’t think of a better way to describe it). When the jagged strings come in they sound like flowers blooming or if someone were to write a soundtrack to a time lapse video of a vine growing across brick wall. The next song, “Kuoleman tappajan kuolema” has a more abstract sound that almost reminds me of Sigur Ros in that it goes somewhere kind of bizarre but beautiful.
Then, “Hämärän Hevoset” reigns everything back in, lays you down and puts you to sleep. The final track (keep in mind this is just a sample of ‘Valohiukkanen’) sounds like running, then about halfway through the song you’re running faster and faster and faster…not sure what from. You can decide that. Either way, I couldn’t be happier that I stumbled upon this gem this morning. I can safely say this is the first music from Finland to be added to my collection.
Lau Nau is the musical moniker of Helsinki-based (now mother of two) artist, Laura Naukkarinen. Her previous two albums ‘Kuutarha’ from 2005 and ‘Nukkuu’ from 2008 were more on the psychedelic folk side than her newest album but they were the award-winning albums that brought Lau Nau many of her current fans.
If you like this, don’t forget to check out the album ‘Valohiukkanen’ in its entirety and her other work.
So this week’s playlist is compiled of some absolutely magical discoveries I have made thanks to some friends (Little May, Twin Peaks and White Arrows…you know who you are if you shared this music with me!) who shared their favorite albums of 2014 with me AND thanks to a fantastic music blog I came across this morning (Secretly Important) that had the blogger’s top 10 albums (some of which I had NEVER heard of….love it). The two Kithkin tracks were inspired by Secretly Important. I had to put both of them in the playlist because “Din IV” leads into “Fallen Giants” impeccably. I also have to thank Soundcloud for this playlist because since I’ve been doing these weekly playlists for the past several months, people (artists, record labels, and other music lovers) have been following me on Soundcloud so in turn, I follow them and check out their page. That’s how I discovered this gem by Afrakite. Looks like this Afrakite song was uploaded 3 days ago. I’m REALLY hoping this Montreal-based artist will shell out some more tracks that are as wonderful on the ears as “Grown Apart.”
I had a friend recommend Cataldo to me MONTHS ago and I finally got around to listening to him because his most recent album, ‘Gilded Oldies’, made it onto Secretly Important’s top 10 albums for 2014 as well. Broncho has been kickin’ around in my head allllll week and I’m loving it. These guys know how to have a good time and make good music while doing it. Afternoons’ in your face track, “Say Yes” was a favorite on NPR All Songs Considered and made it onto Robin Hilton’s favorites mix tape for 2014. Anna of the North out of Oslo, Norway really struck a chord with me because it was 6 years ago now I was preparing for my big adventure to Norway for a semester. Plus, her music is simply beautiful. Finally, Last Lynx, a group out of Sweden stole my heart when I heard their latest track, “Get Up”, on the trusty Hype Machine. Oh and, last night I was treated to the most lovely prime rib for dinner and chocolate fondue for dessert. Had to name the playlist after that experience.
Alvvays (pronounced “Always”) is a sandy, beachy, upbeat pop-rock (remember those candies?) group based out of Toronto. This song grabbed me from moment one. Then the chorus happened and it was all over. I was completely hooked. Their debut self-titled album came out July of this year and interestingly, was produced by Chad VanGaalen, who I just heard of recently and featured on a playlist a few weeks ago. The entire album is just as simply and delightfully decorated with friendly fuzzy guitars, whimsical vocals and classic rock drum beats as, “Archie, Marry Me” is.
It really hasn’t been that long since I posted about Hollow Wood but I JUST CAN’T HELP IT! And, at 11:30 this morning, I received an email update from them that they completed the official music video for one of their tracks on the recently released EP, ‘Seasons’, titled, “Oh My God.” The material in these folks’ songs is not as young as they are. They sing with as much maturity, commitment and passion as any musician who has been out there for 20 years. I fell for this Boise, ID-based group last summer when they passed through with Roadkill Ghost Choir and passed through Missoula with Horse Feathers just this November. Take 4 minutes to watch this video. It’ll be worth your time!
Cheers, Hollow Wood. I can’t wait to hear what you do next.