What I’ve Been Listening To Lately
So I’m historically more of a classic rock guy and that’s not so much the case anymore. I blame playing with synthesizers.
Here’s what’s been going through my iPhone lately. Some slightly older stuff, some not, maybe it will give somebody something new to listen to.
- Jónsi’s “Go” — 2010 solo album from 1/2 of Sigur Rós that I was late discovering. It reminds me in many ways the first time I heard the Shin’s New Slang or Know Your Onion, but on a completely different, maybe even better level. Amazingly good. Apparently he also scores Matt Damon films about zoos. I’m holding out for him also doing Teenage Alien Ninja Turtles, we need more of this.
- Sigur Ros’s “()” — on a similar front, really nice pseudo-ambient, one of the better imaginary language albums out there, not so new, and less happy than the previous mention. Great stuff.
- Parts and Labor’s “Satellites”, “Receivers”, and “MapMakers” — I’ve mentioned how much I love these guys before, but it’s just a great mix of noise, and happy but usually undecipherable lyrics about apocalyptic landscapes. Exceptionally good coding music. Don’t go by samples and laptop speakers, it’s meant for loud headphones or good speakers.
- Anamaguchi’s “Dawn Metropolis” — I don’t usually listen to chiptune, but when I do, I usually listen to this. Stay thirsty, my friends.
- Electric Owls’s “Ain’t Too Bright”, some gaps, but really really good on quite a few tracks. Is that a Taurus on “Magic Show”? Some pretty good writing and even some acoustic blue-grassey tracks in there too.
- Blitzen Trapper’s “Furr” — still in halfway rotation after a while. I don’t like their generic newer stuff and there are some marginal tracks (mostly the louder ones), but particularly the title track is pretty amazing, as are relatively simple bare-bones tracks like “Not Your Lover” or “Echo”. I’m kinda of a sucker for basic piano.
- Boards of Canada’s “Campfire Headphase” — also not so new. While I like “Music Has A Right To Children” a lot, this is a nice mix between sequenced sounding things and textural stuff.
- El Ten Eleven’s self titled debut album — 2 piece loop-heavy acoustic instrumental stuff, kind of post rockey but not too much, with a decent hint of jazz. And not quite as grating as Medeski Martin and Wood, which I don’t care for that much.
- Ulrich Schnauss’s “Far Away Trains Passing By” — kind of minimal ambient techno. I particularly like the character of the reverb.
- Jason Isbell and the 400 Unit — self titled — I’m a sucker for Hammond organ. And they do a very nice cover of Psycho Killer live too.
- Van Halen’s “Balance” — ok this is old. I liked Van Halen for a long time, but for whatever reason I thought I was mostly a Roth fan. I’m stupid, the playing here is pretty darn amazing. And it’s harder. (The ‘04 tour with Sammy was pretty good in Greensboro, even playing the Roth bits).
Older stuff on my top albums list that are holding up:
- The Shins —Oh Inverted World. I don’t really play any of their other albums anymore, this was the apex, but it’s a great apex.
- The Wallflowers — Bringing Down The Horse — I mentioned being a sucker for Hammond Organ right? Rami’s kinda hard to beat for that.
- Warren Zevon — self titled — there aren’t enough good songs about headless thompson gunners written by other people that are also on albums with songs about werewolves.
- Ben Folds — Rocking the Suburbs
- Fountains of Wayne — Welcome Interstate Managers — this has for whatever reason become a driving album for me.
- Guns N Roses — Live Era 87-93 — amazingly great for the cover of “It’s Alright” alone.
- Porcupine Tree’s —Fear of a Blank Planet — odd content, but hit on a really good aesthetic with this one
- The Minibosses’s — Brass — the 9-minute guitar medley of Megaman 2 has serious staying power
- Neil Young — Live At Massey Hall, Live Rust — enough said.
Anyway, there you go.