Wednesday, January 21, 2015

NEW YEARS RESOLUTIONS

Brent:
  1. Only listen to albums.  No shuffles
  2. No repeat restaurants per quarter (exception of Breakfast Club)
  3. Finish the Harry Potter Series
  4. No Tech Wednesday
Chelsey
  1. Run 200 miles
  2. Feel free, strong, alive, powerful, joyous and raw
  3. Beat up Chuck
  4. Love myself more
  5. Acquire the following essential oils:
    1. Lavender
    2. Rosemary
    3. Peppermint
  6. Write a book for Edith/Bette
  7. Unsubscribe from annoying emails
  8. Cancel gym membership
Chuck
  1. Establish a habit of creative writing on Saturday mornings
  2. Get a new position/job
  3. Make out with someone
  4. Redo the bedroom
Alea
  1. Become physically strong
  2. Get into Creighton
  3. Go on a date

Wednesday, January 7, 2015

BRENT'S FAVORITE SONGS OF 2014

All in all, I believe that last year was a weak one for music. It had its moments, but there was a lot of crap that I tried to listen to in 2014.  That said, I've finally made it through every song, and I think I've picked some real winners.  I don't have strong feelings about the rank of these, so we'll just present a group of recommended songs by Brent.

GOOD SONGS:


Hi Five - Angel Olson - I sing the beginning of this song a lot while I'm doing stuff.  I like the combination of Elvis and Roy Orbison delivery. But the whole thing is good.




Parade - The Antlers - Album is hard to get through.  But this song is wonderful.  Perfect drop of the F-bomb right off the bat.



Metallic Cloud - Damien Jurado made a really really long album.  Probably a double album if it was an album.  It has two versions of this song.  Very dramatic. 



So Blonde - EMA - For those of you who like to scream "So blonde" really loud.   



The Body Electric  - Hurray for the Riff Raff - This was my first favorite song of the year, and probably my ultimate favorite.



Just One of the Guys - Jenny Lewis - What a great song about being a woman.  I'm not a woman, but I'm married to one, and I feel like this song captures what it's like to grow older as a female.



West Coast - Lana Del Rey - I just really like the line in it about how if you're not drinking, you're not playing.  Nice twist on the cheating/trying line.



Easter Morning - Papercuts - It's always satisfying when you find an album that no one likes as much as you.  I didn't read anything about Papercuts in the various Best of Music lists, but I thought this song was terrific.  I also thought the album was good.  I should have added that to my post about albums. Shoot.



Queen - Perfume Genius - Perfume Genius got a lot more sexy from it's last album to this one.



Every Time the Sun Comes Up - Sharon Van Etten - This album is just really depressing.  Like the kind of depressing that only hits me when I have a lot of heartache.  I don't really have a lot of heartache, but I will keep this song in mind should things with Chelsey and I go south.



Suffering You, Suffering Me - Slow Club - The Slow Club is one of the few bands that can regularly reinvent themselves without my getting annoyed.  They started out all chamber poppy, and then they changed their sound for the last album to something more raw and stompy.  This album is more polished sounding but with lots of energy.  Slow Club fits in the category of bands I feel like I probably like better than most everyone else.



Inside Out - Spoon - Spoon made another Spoon album.  Meaning that it's easy to bop your head with it, and there are a few good songs, but you won't be taking it to any deserted islands.  This song is really great though.



The Promise - Sturgill Simpson - Yes, it's that The Promise.  As a lover of the original, I give my full seal of approval on this version.  Understated.  Not trying to compete with the original. I'm glad is was able to include a cover on here.



I Love my DAD  - Sun Kil Moon - I didn't get this album until the end.  I never paid Sun Kil Moon much mind, but this album kept coming up on the Best of 2014 lists.  I took to this immediately because I like songs about people loving their dads.  Or apparently I do.  I don't know.



Run From Me - Timber Timbre - Creepy creepy creepy.  Timber Timbre does creepy really well.  Also like the tip of the hat to Tom Dooley in this song.



Okay.  That's all.  So long 2014.  You could have been better.

BRENT'S FAVORITE ALBUMS OF 2014

Hey!  I still have a blog! 

Before we delve into this, I should mention that one of my resolutions for 2015 is to not listen to music on shuffle anymore.  I've abused the shuffle to such a large extent that I'm not sure that I can say I've listened to any album front-to-back.  So this probably isn't the fairest assessment.  But I do these every year, so I'm doing it again this year.
  1. Hurray for the Riff Raff - Small Town Heroes - Okay, I've listened to this one beginning to end on multiple occasions. I just think it's great.  Folk music with some New Orleans influences and other genres mixed in there too.  Nothing new here.  Just great songs all the way through.  Perfect music for sitting outside and drinking.  Or pretty much everything else.
  2. Lana Del Rey - Ultraviolence - I like what Lana Del Rey is selling.  I know that many people don't.  For those of us who like her, this was more of the same.  For those who don't like her, I'm sure this didn't change any minds. 
  3. Conner Oberst - Upside Down Mountain - at this point I'm just listing albums I actually listened to more than once.  I liked this.  It was his best album since like 2005.  It made me happy to no longer sing about spiritual stuff.
  4. First Aid Kit - thus endeth the list of albums that I spent any amount of time with last year.  This was good.  Not great, but a few high points.
I can't pretend to recommend anything else.  I liked a lot of songs off a few other albums, but I can't sit here an recommend anything else with any authority.  Looking at this list, I'm not sure there's much point to it.  But then I guess some people are aware of the Hurray for the Riff Raff album.  So there you go.