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.