Happy Friday, all. You made it through another week. Give yourself a pat on the back, and maybe a beer, if you indulge.
This is right around the time of year where my music taste would metamorphose. Winter is the time of year for darker and often harsher music, and Summer is obviously the time for lighter, poppier, more airy music.
That hasn't really happened yet this year. I think that's partially because, with only a few exceptions, this Spring has been kind of chilly. It hasn't really felt like "windows rolled down" kind of weather, so it hasn't really felt like "windows rolled down" kind of music, either.
Does anyone else do this every year? If so, have you yet this year?
I've stopped worrying about wasting my office's bandwidth while I'm on their VPN. Bandcamp, Youtube, whatever.
I don't like leaving work in the basement sitting on the computer only to go the the computer upstairs to add different music to my iPod. And I need to keep searching for new things to listen to, even if they're old things. Like last week, I listened to a few records from the jazz saxophonist Pharaoh Sanders; all via Youtube.
Any new musical discoveries during this pandemic/quarantine? Trying to discover new music or leaning on old standbys? Earlier this week I was working at home, all alone and it was pouring rain outside. So I listened to Elliot Smith's debut, Roman Candle. Perfect for an isolating raining day.
My love for Van Halen's first album is well known and I thought, since Eruption is such a great intro to You Really Got Me, what other songs would it be a great intro to. The cool thing with streaming music services, is that it's really easy to find out so I created a bunch of playlist pairing a song with Eruption.
I discovered, to no surprise, that Eruption before a quiet song just doesn't work. I thought perhaps the daring difference would be kind of cool, but nope, it's just too discordant. Also pairing Eruption with any other classic rock song works pretty good. Eruption leading into Welcome to the Jungle doesn't miss a beat.
It also works pretty well with some GBV songs, particularly Motor Away and I am a Tree. It really works with a song called Soul Barn, which is an amazing toss-off song buried on a demo release. In all cases, if the production were better, all these combo's would be really cool
Any way, long way to say so stay safe and listen to music, it can really be a balm in these trying times.
Drop 'em if you got 'em.
I always think of rain as the original percussion instrument, and listening to a rainstorm pound out a solo on the roof has always been one of my favorite things. If I'm curled up with a quilt on the bed as I listen, so much the better. In the absence of rain, a good rock and roll drummer can fill the gap. I've always been partial to John Bonham and Nick Mason, with some latter days Phil Collins. How about you?
This quarantine thing got you down? Self isolation giving you the blues? Have you thought "hey, now's the time to try growing facial hair?" only to realize it looks pretty awful?
Don't worry. Be Happy!
There's always music to pick you up!
List or share your best pick-me-up songs, random 10's, musical thoughts, complaints about your hideous new goatee, or whatever!
To belatedly answer Zack's query from last week: I've been streaming less new music.
I'd often go to the album reviews on Pitchfork, and listen to the bandcamp selections, or get a song or two off YouTube.
Now, my speakers connected to my computer are the cruddy ones built into the laptop (I guess I could use headphones).
But more than that, I'm VPNing to my employer's network, meaning that streaming music (and, if youtube, videos I'm not even watching) is sucking the strained bandwidth we're all also using for our calls, video chats, meetings, etc.
I've got seven tabs now open in my browser that I'd like to listen to but may not ever. And I haven't even looked at today's new Pitchfork reviews.
So my work situation has changed a few times in the last year, and it’s always impacted my music listening habits. I find that where, when, and why have a huge influence on what I dig into.
I was already working from home when this all started. And I’ve found working from home has decreased the amount of music I listen to. I find myself watching a lot more TV and movies while I work, and music is strictly a thing for in the car. Most of my car listening would happen on my trips to Winnipeg and back and with those on hold, it’s going to be a change.
I’ve been going for 30-40 minute drives every day or two to clear my mind and get out of the house. I’ll probably switch to walks once it’s nicer. I have been using these times for music, and I find myself listening to old favorites. The stuff we’d listen to driving around in high school and stuff.
How has this impacted you? Do you find yourself listening to more or less music? Finding new things or revisiting? Do you wanna drop a list?
Last year, Annika Norlin and Jens Lekman released Correspondence, an "epistolary album" where each song is a montly "letter" back to the other, over the course of 2018. I'm a huge fan of Ms. Norlin's work. She records in English as "Hello Saferide" and in Swedish as "Säkert!" (though there's an album by Säkert! in English... translations of some of her Swedish songs). As for Lekman... meh. So it's an alternatingly great/not album. Norlin's second-best song on it is "Hibernation" from April, fitting for the current moment of self-quarantine and social distancing. Except for the parts where she takes a train and talks to some youth [lyrics].
BTW, the best song is "'Silent Night'", maybe the best thing Norlin's written (at least in English) [lyrics].
Anyways, drop your lists of Random tens, or maybe point out some fitting songs for waiting out the rider of the white horse.
Well I've got my daughter in the office for the second day in a row - yesterday daycare was closed because of illness and today she's with me because she had a high enough fever that she couldn't go to daycare (though it came down with meds pretty quickly).
And also there's some sort of health related issue in the news?
So: music for a quarantine. Or illness. I suppose that's generally a time when I don't play music. Should I? Would that help a person get better? Is this topic really any different than cabin fever music or desert island music? I dunno.