Wednesday, June 18, 2014

Bombay Bicycle Club - "How Can You Swallow So Much Sleep?"

 Bombay Bicycle Club is an indie rock band known for its catchy beats, meaningful lyrics, and relatability.
Actually, I chose a pretty good song for the average lazy listener. This is one of those songs that repeats the same few lines in a way that makes sense and doesn't drag ("Can I wake you up?"; "Is it late enough?"; "There's a story in which my eyes shut"; "Could you bag me up?").
However, it's not as easy and basic as it may appear.
...I think I'll leave it at that. You're more likely to listen to it that way.
 Bombay Bicycle Club is one of my favorite bands. Honestly, I don't know how I haven't talked about them yet. This was the first song I heard from them that really, really stuck with me. I hope it'll stick to you, too.
You know what to do from here.

Bon Iver - "Skinny Love"

I don't think I've been able to properly introduce you to folk yet.
Now, don't judge the genre before you properly hear it. Besides, the band that I'm writing about is indie folk. Totally different thing.
(Maybe. Whatever it'll take to get you to try it out.)
Indie folk combines the catchy tunes of indie rock with the soft acoustics of contemporary folk.
See, that doesn't sound so bad, does it?
Don't worry, we'll get to the song in a bit, but I can't leave you mispronouncing the band name in good conscience. Say it with me: Bone-Ee-vare.
Bone-Ee-vare.
Bone-Ee-vare.
Okay? None of that "Bon-Eye-Ver"stuff.Bone-Ee-vare.
It took me a really long time to decide what song to use. I know a lot of great indie folk artists, but they didn't appeal to me at first. Although "Skinny Love" is not my favorite Bon Iver song, it is certainly the most well-known and accepted of my other options.
As with most folk-influenced songs, it includes heavy usage of the acoustic guitar, a soft, even tone throughout, and metaphorical lyrics that I hope you'll bother Googling.
The lyrics are easy to hear but hard to understand ("Pour a little salt, we were never here"; "Staring at the sink of blood and crushed veneer"; "Come on skinny love, what happened here?"). I would give you my own opinion of the lyrics, but, in reality, your opinion should be your own opinion.
The video is below. Good luck meeting folk music for the first (or not?) time.

Purity Ring - "Fineshrine"

Remember in my first introduction post when I said that "The songs I'll talk about will probably revolve around a few main genres - indie, rock, folk, electronic, whatever"?
Well, I think I've gotten to indie and rock. Next up is electronic. (We're not going in chronological order, okay?)
Purity Ring is another Canadian band consisting of Megan James (vocals) and Corin Roddick (instrumentals). They're known for their heavy beats, haunting (sometimes creepy) lyrics, and, of course, the lead singer's voice (often described as high-pitched).
Purity Ring is definitely not your average electronic band. For one thing, they actually have lyrics. They are often meaningful and dark. They make you think and consider the purpose of the song.
This song, in particular, opens with "Get a little closer, let fold/Cut open my sternum, and pull/My little ribs around you". (People usually stop here.)
But, if you continue on, you get to the more detailed "That I might see with my chest and sink/Into the edges round you/Into the lakes of quarry's that brink".
Think you understand the song yet?
Need to know the rest of the lyrics to come up with a guess?
Here's the video. Listen to the song and have fun decoding.

Tuesday, June 17, 2014

Arcade Fire - "Modern Man"

Arcade Fire is a Canada-based indie rock band (with pop and classical influences) created in 2001. They currently have four albums out. This song can be found in "The Suburbs".
They're known for their only-as-catchy-as-necessary beats and vague (sometimes confusing) lyrics.
This song, in particular, has quite a few different meanings (I guess) but I will share my own thoughts with you.
It appears to be about the existential crisis of the so-called "modern man" - humans following along with what is popular nowadays without really understanding the purpose of said materialism. We huddle together in lonely packs with our heads down and our shoulders up, not even attempting to question or wonder.
"In line for a number but you don't understand/like a modern man"
"I know we are the chosen few, but we're wasted"
"And you feel so right, but how come you can't sleep at night?"
These are just a few lines from the song that support my opinion.
Then again, in the end, that's exactly what it is - an opinion.
Maybe you should listen to it yourself, come up with your own thesis.
Well? What are you waiting for? I gave you the link - the rest is on you. 

Thursday, June 12, 2014

The xx - "Night Time"

I just realized that I haven't talked about The xx yet.
The xx is yet another indie/pop group that specializes in great lyrics and mellow beats. You can't really dislike them - maybe you don't love them, but who could hate them?
It took me a while to decide what song in specific to recommend. They only have two albums but pretty much all of their songs are amazing. In the end, I went with the first song I heard by them - "Night Time". It's got a really understated pop-y beat that you'll catch yourself humming during the day. (Be careful with that, it could get really awkward.)
Most of their songs make use of the other male vocal with no obvious "lead" singer, but this one is all one person. It's what separates it from the rest of their songs.
The lyrics are short, sweet, and to-the-point ("Should release but just tighten my grip"; "Hold my words, keep us together") like they usually are. They have a very refreshing, minimalistic approach to indie pop.
Are you curious yet? Wanna see if you like it? I'll help - all you have to do is click play.

Wednesday, June 11, 2014

Local Natives - "Out Getting Ribs"

So today I'm doing two things that I usually disapprove of.
The first thing: recommending a song from a band that I've recently talked about.
The second? Recommending a cover song.
Don't know what a cover song is? (Are there a lot of bugs under your rock?) I'll tell you.
A cover is when a band or a person or a dog or whatever sings a song that's already published by another band or person or dog or whatever. In this case, Local Natives is covering King Krule's "Out Getting Ribs".
The original song is already pretty good, but the Local Natives cover is just overall...better. Maybe it's because it's more modern, less raw. Maybe it's because the lead singer has less of an accent. (Listen to the original and you'll see what I mean.) They sing it like it's their own, even though we all know it's not.
I guess I can't really talk about the lyrics (hence the reason why I didn't want to discuss a cover song) because, well, it's not a song written by Local Natives.
But listen to it anyway.
Listen to the cover, listen to the original, listen to both. Whatever you decide to do, I hope you don't regret it.

Monday, June 9, 2014

Daughter - "Youth"

Beware - this is this first "slow" song I've recommended so far. Proceed with caution.
Don't like slow songs? Try it anyway.
Don't want to? See above response.
Daughter is an indie/ambient band known for their unmistakable female lead's voice (courtesy of Elena Tonra), slow but dramatic music, and deep, metaphorical lyrics. This song is no exception.
Some of the lyrics are dark and open to interpretation ("And if you're still breathing, you're the lucky ones, 'cause most of us are heaving through corrupted lungs"; "Setting fire to our insides for fun") while others are clear and obvious ("But I'm forever missing him"; "And if you're in love, then you are the lucky one, 'cause most of us are bitter over someone").
As you may have already noticed, these types of lyrics are my favorite - the mix between complicated and succinct, confusing and palpable. (Hopefully, I can make them yours, too.)
Tired of my blabbing? Me, too. Here's the song.

Thursday, June 5, 2014

Joyce Manor - "Constant Headache"

Joyce Manor is a California-based indie/punk rock band formed in 2008. Their new album is actually coming out soon (July 22nd of this year!).
This song isn't for everyone. It's the loudest/most obnoxious of all the songs I've talked about so far. There's heavy guitar usage and frequent drum-banging. Listen at your own risk. (I did say punk rock, after all.)
The lyrics aren't complicated and metaphorical. Instead, they're very straightforward and not very open to interpretation. There's not many different meanings; instead, it's pretty clear what the topic is ("I never ever felt so cool disguised in your sheets; "But I'm a constant headache, a tooth out of line"), although I guess you can listen and come up with your own opinion.
Sound interesting? Go ahead and try it out.

Wednesday, June 4, 2014

Passion Pit - "Sleepyhead"

Passion Pit is actually one of my favorite bands. I love all of their songs but this was the first song that really got me interested, so I chose it to write about today. Expect more in the future.
They're a mainly indie band with electronic influences - no, don't worry, not techno-y/dubstep electronic. Don't expect that stuff from me. Their band name is slang for drive-in movie theaters (passion pit, get it?) and their first album, later to be referred to as "Chunk of Change", was a belated Valentine's Day gift to the lead vocal's (then)-girlfriend. What a way to start out, right?
This song in particular is what every song should be. It has a great beat and great lyrics with a person that actually has a great voice singing them. This is one of those "thinking" songs, though - you have to think about the lyrics to understand them ("They crowd your bedroom like some thoughts wearing thin against the walls, against your rules, against your skin"). I can honestly say that it is completely worth it.
Want to try it out? Here's the video. Don't like it? Maybe next time, I'll get it right.

Monday, June 2, 2014

Arctic Monkeys - "Do I Wanna Know?"

Let me start off by saying this: contrary to popular belief, the Arctic Monkeys is not a new band.
I repeat: the Arctic Monkeys is not a new band.
They were formed in 2002 as an indie rock band (surprise, right?) and released their first album in 2006. I realize that this song has recently came about the radio (originally produced in 2012), so I'm glad if you already know it, but just know that they are not a new band.
(Seriously. They're not.)
Now that that's out of the way, let's talk about the song.
It has a really catchy (not pop-y) beat, which is what attracts listeners nowadays, and the lyrics aren't too deep and metaphorical so it's an easy song to understand. That's probably one of the things people like most about it - no one wants to spend their time deciphering complicated lyrics anymore. It's a relatable song ("Ever thought of calling when you've had a few?"; "Do I wanna know if this feeling flows both ways?") that a lot of people can connect to.
Anyway, I think it's a really great song, and I'm obviously not the only one.
How about you? Are you thinking about joining the fanbase?
Well, try it out, and let me know how you feel.

 

Thursday, May 29, 2014

The Black Keys - "Ten Cent Pistol"

Before even introducing the song, I must first come clean.
I totally didn't mean to talk about this song today.
(Just let that sink in for a second.)
I had a whole different thing planned, but this song has been stuck in my head all day and I need to get it out.
Here, you take it.
It's "Ten Cent Pistol" by The Black Keys, a blues-y rock duo formed in 2001.
The song isn't really even very obscure or strange or unknown. It's one of those songs that tells a story from the first line to the last. It's not very hard to understand the lyrics - it's about a woman who takes revenge on her unfaithful lover and his mistress by using the "ten cent pistol" concoction to burn them (or maybe disfigure them?) horribly.
Ouch. 
Anyway, the guitar work is really great and catchy without giving you a pop-y vibe and the lyrics are easy to follow and sing along to. (Not that I do that.) [Maybe I do. Don't tell anyone.]
Wanna listen to it? Fine. You don't even have to Google it - just hit play.

Tuesday, May 27, 2014

Local Natives - "You and I"

Are you looking for a break-up song? One with deep lyrics that actually make sense to you, a good beat that you can tap your foot to without feeling like you're in a club, and a high-pitched male voice that is definitely not Justin Bieber?
Look no more! I've totally found it!
The song that, amazingly, meets all of my high-standard criteria is "You and I" by Local Natives.
Never heard of Local Natives?
I'll tell you a bit about them.
Already heard of Local Natives? 
I'm still gonna tell you a bit about them.
Local Natives is an indie rock band from Los Angeles. They started out in the UK in 2009 and were finally brought into the US a year later. They're known for their (understated!) pop-y sound and well-developed lyrics (with the occasional "slow song" thrown in here and there).
This song in particular is a mix of break-up cliches ("When did your love grow cold?"; "The closer I get, the farther I have to go") and obscure metaphors ("In all this light, all I feel is dark"; "And I woke up with my green eyes blue"). I guess this pretty much sums up their entire set of songs.
Either way, it's a really great song. I would do one of those "on-a-scale-of-1-to-10" things but it really doesn't matter - I'm not you and I don't know you. There's no guarantees that you'll like it. The only thing that you have is my hope that you will.
So? What are you waiting for? Go ahead and take a chance - click play.

Monday, May 26, 2014

Introduction Post

Since this is the first post of the blog, I figured we should start slow. 
Introductions, maybe?
"Hi, I'm Kelsey and I listen to a wide variety of music. The main purpose of this website is for me to sort out my complicated music playlists and, hopefully, interest you in some new groups." Or, at least, that's what it says on my About Me page. I'll probably post a few times a week with each post containing one or two song recommendations.
I know what you're thinking - do we really need another stupid teenage girl to make a blog highlighting her unimportant musical tastes? The answer is no. No, we really don't.
But, I'm gonna do it anyway.
I know you've heard it all before - "it's different from what you usually hear" - "it's really obscure stuff" - "it's cool music no one else listens to"  - so I'm not gonna give you any false hope.
Maybe you already use Pandora or Last.fm. Maybe you feel no shame listening to the Top 40's. Maybe you don't really need my insight.
Or, maybe you do.
The songs I'll talk about will probably revolve around a few main genres - indie, rock, folk, electronic, whatever. I aim for newer music (minus the mindless beats and unidentifiable lyrics), although I have nothing against the oldies and may even bring some up in the future.
The whole point is to interest you in something new - new to you, not to the world.
Am I confusing you? Do you want a preview into this blog?
Fine. Here's "Lisztomania" by Phoenix.
Enjoy it or don't - you can't get it right every time. Either way, check back later for more songs.