Or what is currently spinning on my MP3 player, and/or songs I just can’t get enough of lately.
As you return from a weekend that celebrated according to certain political figures the anti-thesis of its professed name (again I try to stay above from the fray but when stupidity speaks it must be acknowledged), here are songs I’m really digging that really run the gamut of genres from R&B Pop to revision PopPunk.
Sky Ferreira’s “Everything Is Embarrassing” (click← to download)
One side of the 90s definitely had a noble, change-the-world outlook (as so cleverly captured in the opening episode of Portlandia, e.g., “The Dream of the 90s”), but the less memorable (or forgettable) part included a lot of over-produced, maudlin commercial radio, a continuation of the superficial bubble-gum pop of the 80s. Even in that universe of excess, little kernels of genius exist. Of late, the over-the-top R&B Pop of the 90s is being revisited and redefined. Last week I posted two Jessie Ware songs that captured this early 90s sound but gave it a fresh and less nausea inducing feel (read: this is a positive thing). This week, Sky Ferreira adds her take to this sort of “revival”. (Not sure either of these singers would necessarily situate themselves in these camps.) “Everything is Embarrassing” is the sort of wonderful sonic embrace of soul and bass infused dance pop perfect to jumpstart your afternoon.
Generationals “Lucky Numbers” (Listen below or here via Soundcloud)
Talk about synth! Oh boy I can’t stop listening to this song. It definitely has a mod-moog fetish at work underneath. It’s as if the Rentals decided to become a Yaz cover band!
Buke and Gase’s “Fussrate” (click to listen)
Think the heavy layering and bass drone of Morphine filtered through that late 90s DIY/Lo-Fi fuzz rock of Kleenex Girl Wonder or the first Broken Social Scene record. Also, curious and pleasing is that near song’s end the female vocalist sounds oddly like Madonna… especially when she sings “daddy do not be shy”; a strange flashback to “Papa Don’t Preach”. From the look of it these guys are touring with Deerhoof, so show up early to catch these guys.
Menomena – “Capsule” (click to listen)
I admit I always wanted to like Menomena based on a combination of their name and their visual aesthetic (check out the excellent Craig Thompson cover for Friends and Foes), but I’ve never been totally into their music. “Capsule” though has the strangely hypnotic throwback to Lou Barlow’s early Sebadoh days with the sophistication he developed on Folk Implosion. The song is decidedly polished for a band who I often found to be sort of 21st Century version of Mudhoney (another band that I want to like more than I actually do) and finds them exploring a strangely soul-ful 90s Brit Pop quality. Plus, the subtle synth-line near song’s end with the faux steel drum feel makes me wonder whether this band is finally going to enter my sonic pleasure zone? Eager to see!
Or check out the stream of NPR’s All Songs Considered featuring both Buke and Gase and Menomana plus Macklemore and Lewis here.