Through the warmth, through the cold Keep running ‘til we’re there
I’ve been on a bender to find some solid new travel music before my trip to Chicago this week for a USMLE Step 2 CS board review course. Luckily I found a ton which I’ll be posting throughout the week.
Up first is “Home” by Dutch singer-songwriter Dotan.
“What’s wrong with death sir? What are we so mortally afraid of? Why can’t we treat death with a certain amount of humanity and dignity, and decency, and God forbid, maybe even humor. Death is not the enemy gentlemen. If we’re going to fight a disease, let’s fight one of the most terrible diseases of all, indifference. You treat a disease, you win, you lose. You treat a person, I guarantee you, you’ll win, no matter what the outcome.”—Robin Williams, Patch Adams
I honestly thought I had already posted this song because it’s literally fantastic and the fact that I didn’t means it’s time to rectify the situation. “Reverse” by SomeKindaWonderful is one of those songs that’s just catchy from the first note. The drum beat is fantastic. The lead singer reminds me a lot of indie rapper/singer Splendid, of whom I am a big fan. Check it out. Guaranteed hit.
London born singer songwriter Emily Woods fronts her band Emily And The Woods, which is currently getting a lot of play time on my Spotify. Her 2014 EP, Then We Collide, features four extremely solid tracks. Here’s “Helios” which was the first track I heard and the one that thankfully got me to give the EP a listen.
A friend sent me Flatsound’s album, Sleep, to check out on Spotify and it’s pretty amazing. The first half of the album sees Mitch Welling focusing on his singer-songwriter while the second half sees him experimenting with ambient sounds and music. The first half is definitely more my go-to but the latter half is great for sleeping. The acoustic guitar is on point, as are the lyrics which are relate-able in the same way that Matt Nathanson’s lyrics or Richward Edwards’ lyrics are. My two favorite tracks are “Don’t Call Me At All” and “Sleep.”
I was listening to a playlist on Spotify today while washing dishes and “All That I Am” by Parachutes came on. I don’t even care that they are considered a “pop” band and have toured with the Jonas Brothers. This is a damn good song.
Finally getting around to listening to “Slingshot to Heaven,” the 5th studio album from Margot & The Nuclear So and So’s and I’ve got to say, it might be the best album since Dust of Retreat. While I liked the albums since Dust—Not Animal, Animal, Buzzard, and Rot Gut Domestic—and they’ve each had some amazing tracks, they never really matched the overall feel of Dust of Retreat. This new album seems to have recaptured the magic while managing to pull in the best aspects from the albums between Dust and Slingshot.
Formed just over a year ago, Mansions on the Moon, consists of Shaw and Ben Hazlegrove (of Pnuma Trio) along with singer/songwriter, Ted Wendler. The band’s debut EP, Full Moon, was released in October 2013 and features some great indie-synth-pop tracks. A friend sent this song, “More Than Nothing” my way recently, and now they are definitely on my bands to watch list for 2014.
“A chapter pertaining to the string of noble friends in my life whom I would call best. I am lucky enough to have counted several, and I’m still young by gad. The adhesive joining us, always, has been a sense of confederacy. A penchant for mischief and irreverent humor. Us against Them. As long as we were together, we managed to have as much fun as possible, because really, otherwise, what’s the fucking point?”—Nick Offerman (Ron Swanson), “Paddle Your Own Canoe.”
I recently had someone on Tumblr ask me if I was on Spotify so they could follow me for music suggestions, having liked the music I post here. I’m not sure how to link directly to my Spotify account (if that’s even possible) so I decided to link to two playlists that have become my “catch alls” for new music I find.
The playlist above, “PRDR, Fishbowls & Mexican Mondays” came about sometime in August 2013 while studying for my first round of medical boards as a way to share some songs I was really into with a few friends. It served and continues to serve as a waystation for tracks that have already been vetted from my on-going (and currently 510 track, 31 hour long) “To Listen To” playlist and that might make it onto the “New for 34th” playlist. Basically, when I find a song I really like out of an album and listen to it over and over again, it gets bumped up to this playlist which means this playlist, on shuffle, is also pretty solid for long drives in the car.
Currently at 90 tracks and 5h 28 minutes, “PRDR, Fishbowls, & Mexican Mondays” features tracks by artists like Matthew Mayfield, Mighty Oaks, Bronze Radio Return, Moon Taxi, Smallpools, Johnnyswim and more.
I heard this song playing in Chipotle yesterday and have been listening to it ever since. AKW’s voice is great and while the instrumentation is pretty simple, the subtle changes make a huge difference.
I continually forget how great The Damnwells are until I randomly listen to a song by them and go on a hardcore binge. Their latest album is perfect with it’s mix of distorted guitars, gravely vocals, sweeping acoustic guitars and killer lyrics. It’s like gettin a right hook to the ear courtesy of Alternative Americana. Here’s “She Goes Around.”
Matthew Mayfield has been one of my favorite singer-songwriters for months now and I continually get blown away by his tracks as I delve deeper into his repertoire. This time around it was track “Maybe Next Christmas” off the similarly titled EP. It’s use of repetition is perfect and brutally honest, if not biographical lyrics makes it the kind of song almost everyone can relate to.