In which, even when she is being the world’s most rubbish and lazy music blogger, Lis puts together a selection of songs that have caught her attention through the joys of iTunes shuffle this month.
What Do I Know About Love Except Lovesongs: last month’s mix, January 2011
1. Johnny Reb: “A Year To The Shadows”
Johnny Reb are Glasgow-based rock ‘n’ roll. They get sulky when I don’t write about them, and they’re playing Captain’s Rest on 15th February.
2. Franz Nicolay: “Confessions of an Ineffective Cassanova”
This is poetry, of a certain sort, but Franz doesn’t play it live anymore because his wife doesn’t like it. Which I suppose takes the truth out of it anyway.
3. Neil Young with Crazy Horse: “Cinnamon Girl”
It’s taken me twenty-eight years, but I think I’m finally starting to get Neil Young.
4. Matt Nathanson: “All We Are”
This is twinkly singer-songwriter fare of the sort I can’t stomach in large doses, but that can make my heart melt in just the right way in small.
5. The Spinanes: “Hawaiian Baby”
From the depths of the iTunes library. This one sounds a bit retro, which means that it probably is.
6. Kai: “I Choose Me”
Impossibly cute twenty-year-old Canadian singer-songwriter with melty pop vocals and excellent tattoos.
7. Warpaint: “Ashes to Ashes” [David Bowie cover]
Glam-pop given the floaty, lo-fi female vocal treatment. Everybody else in the world is already all over this band. I’m not sure why it’s taken me this long.
8. Wheels On Fire: “Go Give Yer Love Away”
Indiepop by way of Athens, Ohio; via Kind Turkey Records.
9. Benjamin Francis Leftwich: “Atlas Hands”
The sweet, low-key guitar has shades of Ben Gibbard, but the whispery vocals are all his own. Local to my good friend Jonic, Leftwich was a recommendation and a good one at that.
10. Dan Mangan: “Basket”
It’s the lyrics here, the lyrics and a voice like winter comfort.
11. Bright Eyes: “Shell Games”
Listen, just because I didn’t join the rush for tickets doesn’t mean I won’t be all over Conor Obert’s upcoming release with his Bright Eyes project.
12. The Tallest Man on Earth: “The Wind”
I’ve heard this one labelled Sweden’s new Dylan, and his music is certainly engaging and absorbing enough to qualify. Fun fact: a cursory Google to reveal which corner of Scandinavia Kristian Matsson calls home also turns up the fact that he is younger than me. I could deal with the footballers. I could deal with the popstars…
13. Dave Hughes: “The Replacement”
It’s easy to see where my renegade punk friend takes his lyrical cues. You should come see him at the 13th Note on 8th February you know, particularly if you missed out on a ticket for Bright Eyes. He might have a few surprises in store.
14. The Decemberists: “Rox in the Box”
And it’s one, two, three, Colin Meloy is writing songs again… songs with triumphant refrains that make you want to punch the air.
15. Planet Earth, “Bristol”
Where did I get this quirky, charming little EP, which sounds like the second coming of Wave Pictures or something? I wish I knew so that I could say thank-you.
16. Idlewild: “The Bronze Medal”
Let me see out my first mix of the year with the song with which I saw out my 2010 then; nothing but your eyes and what’s left of the cold.
DOWNLOAD: What Do I Know About Love Except Lovesongs [zip]
Monthly Most Played as of January 2011:
1. Marah, “Walt Whitman Bridge” [=] 2. The Gaslight Anthem, “High Lonesome” [=] 3. The Gaslight Anthem, “We Came To Dance” [=] 4. The Hold Steady, “Banging Camp” [=] 5. The Gaslight Anthem, “Old White Lincoln” [=] 6= The Gaslight Anthem, “The ’59 Sound” [=] 6= The Hold Steady, “Your Little Hoodrat Friend”  8. The Hold Steady, “Hurricane J”  9= The Hold Steady, “The Weekenders”  9= The Hold Steady, “Magazines”