Friday, March 7, 2008

Music I've Been Obsessed With

Whenever I'm going through a hard time, it's nice to have some rich, complex music to dig into, to burrow inside of. The following are some records that have helped me, of late.
What: Spoon - Ga Ga Ga Ga Ga

Why I Love It:
Ever since I picked it up that day in Minneapolis, I've listened to this at least once a day. Sheer brilliance in every second. It is at the same time raw and polished, simple and shockingly layered. Every time I listen to it, I find something new to marvel at. It just gets better and better. I am so incredibly excited to see Spoon play this coming week at SXSW. These guys are finding brand new roads through pop music, and that is far too rare nowadays. Genius. I am in love.

My Advice:
Buy it now! Your immediate favorite will be "The Underdog" (produced by Jon Brion), but all the songs will slowly reveal themselves to you.

Favorite Lyrics:
"Remember/the winter/gets cold in ways you always forget." - Rhthm & Soul

"I'm in need of someone/to take care of me tonight/as I walk into Dorian's/can you see it in my eyes?/my boots are on the mend/and they ain't walkin' home/street tar and summer/do a job on your sole." - Black Like Me

"I wanna forget how convention fits/but can I get out from under it?/can I cut it out of me?/it can't all be wedding cake/it can't all be boiled away/I tried but I can't let go of it/cause you don't talk to the waterboy/and there's so much you could learn but you don't wanna know/you will not back up an inch ever/that's why you will not survive." - The Underdog

Listen to the whole album now.

Buy it on
Spoon - Ga Ga Ga Ga Ga (Bonus Track Version)

What: Suzanne Vega - Beauty and Crime

Why I Love It:
The first time I heard it, half-listening while walking, I thought the production was stronger than usual for her, but the lyrics were "meh." Well, upon further listens, I am happy to report that I was completely wrong. This is one of her richest, deepest albums. The record focuses on New York City: its charm, its sadness, and its many stories. She continues to write like an complete alien, which is a good thing. She objectively observes, and is as unsentimental as a human can be, but this collection of songs has a lot of heart. "Bound" is a highlight (and particularly resonant for me at the moment) in a sea of gems. The level of craft here is astounding. Oh also it just won a Grammy for "Best Engineered Album (Non Classical)."

My Advice:
Big surprise. Buy it now! Give it some time to sink in.

Favorite Lyrics:
"The way of the world/has taken its toll/ravaged my body/and bitten my soul./I am ruined by rain/weathered by wind/I've been invaded/without and within./And I ask/I am asking you/asking you if you might still want me./When I said 'I am bound to you forever/here's what I meant:/'I am bound to you forever.'" - Bound

"This time/when I go back to Ludlow Street/I find/each stoop and doorway's incomplete/without you there./Love is the only thing that matters/love is the only thing that's real/and when I think about you now/love is the only thing I feel." - Ludlow Street

"New York is a woman/she'll make you cry/and to her you're just another guy." - New York Is A Woman

Listen to three songs here.

Buy it on
Suzanne Vega - Beauty & Crime (Bonus Track Version)


There's more music to share with you, but we'll save it for another time. I'm still completely obsessed with both Kathleen Edwards records, and she released her third one this week. I must run to Amoeba and inject it into my veins pronto.

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  1. My history teacher at school's son is in Spoon and it's so weird because today our school newspaper had an interview with them! very ironic

  2. Great music tips! I especially enjoy Spoon. Thanks for the introduction!

  3. Just wanted to tell you... I got "High Cost of Living" for a friend for her birthday (and one for myself, as well)...and we CANNOT stop listening to it

    Our favorites so far are "Starfish" and "Mirror".

  4. Dude. My band teacher plays Spoon through the intercom thing on the charter buses when we have band trips/Away Games! Sometimes, it gets so loud, you can't hear your ipod and you're like.. forced to listen to it. But then again, my band teacher isn't exactly what you would call "normal" so I'm thinking that is what he's going for.