A Short Musical History of the Last Six or Seven Months
Please excuse me while I remember how to work this thing after so many months of neglect…
Maybe it’s slightly ironic that as soon as I moved to the Live Music Capital of the World, I completely lost interest in music for awhile. Or maybe I was too preoccupied with moving, finding a job, searching for the meaning of life, and devouring a wide variety of cupcakes and breakfast tacos. That isn’t to say I haven’t been to shows; I’ve accompanied my alt-country-loving roommate to a number of shows, including Band of Heathens, Ray Wylie Hubbard, Dave Alvin, Band of Heathens again, Lucero, Scott Miller, and many others. I did see a couple of bands from my own collection, mostly Beach House with Grizzly Bear, and Pinback. I even saw a fantastic and totally free show by Spoon in the Waterloo Records parking lot. But I got burned with trying to see acts that I enjoy when I overzealously bought two tickets to EVERYTHING (only a slight exaggeration) and then couldn’t find anyone to go with me. By the time the Final Fantasy and The Mountain Goats show came around, I had pretty much given up.
In the meantime, my iPod has been a wasteland, used only for running mixes and Savage Love podcasts. I liked, and then completely forgot, a small handful of albums. Florence + the Machine’s Lungs grabbed me at first, but now I only listen to the first great single “Cosmic Love.” Lou Barlow had a new album called Goodnight Unknown, which is solid but status quo. I got a lot of mileage (literally) out of Royksopp‘s Junior as my new running companion.
But something happened last week. I looked at the upcoming releases for this year, and especially the next couple of months, and got really excited. The Knife. Midlake. Caribou. Yeasayer. Rogue Wave. MGMT, Fleet Foxes, and Joanna Newsom. I know these aren’t exactly new discoveries for me, but sometimes rediscovery can spark something that’s different from what came before.
For instance, I never realized just how much I liked The Clientele until the other day. I’ve known about them for years and I own God Save the Clientele, which I found to be extremely pleasant, and I even bought Bonfires on the Heath the week before last, just, you know, because. There wasn’t much going on that week. But I never realized how much I really, really liked them, goshdarn it, until I listened to Strange Geometry on lala (follow me!) and felt a sudden urge to own everything they’ve ever made. That’s just the space I’m in.
Also, even though I’ve been a casual fan of Kings of Convenience and Whitest Boy Alive, I didn’t discover my overwhelming, all-consuming love of Erlend Oye until yesterday. Go to YouTube and watch all of the Kings of Convenience’s music videos. No, really. Right now. Or at least start with this one. Sorry, kids — EMI won’t let me embed.
Something about that skinny, red-headed Norwegian guy with the dorky glasses and smooth voice makes me just melt. Side note: Why does it seem like Norwegian music either falls into the twee or black metal category? Is there anything in between? I’ve never been to Norway.
So that’s the old news. Over the next few days I will work on repairing the broken song links from previous entries. In the meantime, have a tune and a cupcake.*
Caribou — “Odessa,” featuring Erlend Oye (or not? After some research, it seems that people make the Oye connection, but it might very well be Dan Snaith) on vocals. The album Swim will be released in the US on April 20th by Merge.
*(cupcake not included)