Sunday, September 30, 2012

Frightened Rabbit - The Wrestle

Frightened Rabbit is a Scottish group with interesting vocals.  I like most of the songs and often have them in the background no matter what I'm doing.  Yet when I start paying attention to the lyrics, I can end up losing a day trying to figure out what's being said.

To me, The Wrestle, is either about fighting some sort of sea monster or a violently passionate night.  Either one sounds a little scary for me.  But I am certain it isn't about a wrestling tournament.  This is a great group - if you like them, definitely check out Swim Until You Can't See Land on the same album,  The Winter of Mixed Drinks.

Music and lyrics can be found on the video below.

If you like the music, please support the artists and buy their music!!!

Saturday, September 29, 2012

Melissa Etheridge - Precious Pain

I listened to Melissa Etheridge's new album, 4th Street Feeling, and left wishing that she'd captured some other street's feeling (or maybe even an avenue).  The songs did not seem to have the emotional quality that I associate with her music.  And some of the lyrics just did not make sense.  The best song on the album was Shadow of a Black Crow.  While I tried hard to listen to the song, it was somewhat spoiled by the fact that it started with the line "I am levitating somewhere down the road..."  What does that even mean??

I've included Precious Pain,  a song off her self-titled first album.  It's one of her best - somewhere along the way, she became wealthy and happy, a combination that seems to be an anathema for good song writing

The video below contains the music and lyrics.

Support the artist and buy her music (at least the good stuff!).

Friday, September 28, 2012

Nerina Pallot - Butterfly

Nerina Pallot is an incredibly talented singer and her music has matured from album to album.  Her first album, Dear Frustrated Superstar, had some great songs on it and each subsequent work has been stronger than the last.  I would have to say that Year of the Wolf, her last album and the one on which Butterfly can be found, is my favorite.  I would highly recommend all of her music!

Butterfly cautions against starting a relationship if you aren't ready for the inevitable and painful conclusion.  "If you really can't let go, start no fire" seems like sage advice for those who have difficulty dealing with endings.  While I agree that there is risk and the potential for pain in anything, I think keeping the cold away even for a little while is worth starting the fire.  Deal with the pain when it happens...enjoy the moment!

Video with music and lyrics is below.

Support the artist and buy her music!!!

Thursday, September 27, 2012

Matchbox Twenty - I Will

I'm a big fan of Matchbox Twenty (or is it Matchbox 20?),   I like this album a lot - it's consistent with their previous work.  If you liked the older albums, you'll like North.  I do think that you can notice a stronger influence from the other band members - it's not just Rob Thomas on this album.

I Will is my favorite song on the album.  I think it's about looking back and being amazed at how much time has passed in a relationship.  Days may pass slowly but the years fly by.  Yet it is great to be confident enough in the strength of the relationship to say that you will continue to be there no matter what happens.

Hope you like the song as much as I do!  The video with music and lyrics is below.

Please support the artists and buy their music!!

Wednesday, September 26, 2012

Kid Cudi - Pursuit of Happiness (Nightmare)

I love this song!!  I think it's a cautionary tale about the pursuit of pleasure for it's own sake.  Living life to the fullest is a great thing but losing oneself in the pursuit can be the end result.  Happiness has to be built brick by brick, not chased!

In this case, Kid Cudi keeps repeating that he'll be good once he gets "it."  It's only in the last line of the song that he sings "I don't get it, I'll be good."  Maybe the day after a hard night raises the consciousness a little!

As always, I could just be reading too much into a song that simply sounds great. But I don't think so.

Please see the video below for music and lyrics!!

Support the artist and buy his music!!!

Tuesday, September 25, 2012

The Hundred In The Hands - Lovesick (Once Again)

A great song - really captures the turmoil surrounding the start of a relationship.  In the lyrics, I'm not sure if it's violins in my heart or violence in my heart - I prefer violins or this turns into a much darker song!

Please watch the video with music and lyrics below.

Please support the artists and buy their music!!!

Monday, September 24, 2012

Ellis Paul - The Day After Everything Changed

Don't you hate when a person has two first names?  That's my only complaint about Ellis Paul - I can never find him on my artist list because I'm always looking for Paul Ellis.

At first blush this song seems like a song about the start of a relationship.  I think it is more about the change that comes over a person when they find love and how it inevitably continues to evolve as "colors change...iron rusts."  There is always something that can slowly wear at the relationship as "the truth will reveal us like water breaking stone."  Reminds me that there is always work in maintaining a relationship and nothing should ever be taken for granted.

Please see the video below for music and lyrics - tell me if you agree!!

Support the artist and buy his music!!!

Sunday, September 23, 2012

Movie - The Guard (2011)

The Guard starts off slow but gets better as it goes - just give it a chance.  I wasn't able to completely suspend my disbelief but I did like the characters a lot.  It is a comedy although very sardonic in approach. 

Brendan Gleeson plays the main character, Sergeant Gerry Boyle.  One can never be sure of what's going on underneath his small-town mannerisms, rough edges and blind eye towards the law.  Don Cheadle who plays an FBI agent, Wendell Everett, pairs up with the Sergeant to find three of the most wanted and most well read international drug dealers.  At one point, he tells the sergeant, "I can't tell if you're really motherf***in' dumb, or really motherf***in' smart."  Either way, there are some brilliant lines and I would recommend this movie!  It's a great ride that goes up and down as they look for Nietzsche-quoting drug dealers.   

I would give this movie three stars out of five.  Stars are given as follows:

IMDB Link to The Guard

Saturday, September 22, 2012

MoZella - Can't Stop

I've never understood why MoZella isn't a bigger name in the US.  Her unique voice, heartfelt emotions and direct lyrics are a  powerful combination.  I can listen to her albums from start to finish without skipping songs - that's no easy feat and there are very artists about whom I would say that!

Please take a look at the music and lyrics on the video below.

Please support the artist and buy her music!!

Friday, September 21, 2012

Basia Bulat - Run

Basia Bulat is hardly a household name but she ought to be one.  She's a Canadian folksinger with two full length albums.  Run is from her second album Heart of My Own (2010).  Both are great albums but I definitely like the second best and eagerly await her next one.

The music is unpretentious and she has a great voice - though I've heard some say that it sounds like she is singing underwater.  I disagree!!

Please listen to the music with lyrics on the video below and tell me what you think!!

Please support the artist and buy her music!!

Thursday, September 20, 2012

Stabbing Westward - Save Yourself

Interesting song with great music. It's like nothing else I've heard.  Unfortunately, they never repeated their success with another song that was quite as good.  I don't think the group is around any more.  But that's really no surprise.  With all that yelling, how could anyone sustain a long singing career?

Below is the music with lyrics.

Support the artists and buy their music!!

Wednesday, September 19, 2012

Dragonette - Take It Like a Man

Every song by this group is fun.  I love Martina Sorbara's attitude as she sings some of the most interesting lyrics.  She delivers a woman's point of view on a relationship with which she's not quite done while her guy obviously wants to run as fast and far away as possible.

This song is off of their album Galore.  They are releasing their next album this month and I thought I'd bring out this song from 2007 in honor of the release.

Video with music and lyrics can be found below.

Please support the artists and buy their music!!!

Tuesday, September 18, 2012

Waka Flocka Flame - Get Low (feat. Nicki Minaj, Tyga & Flo Rida)

Love this song. Four people bringing their own personalities into the song and melding into can anyone not love it?

Support the artist and buy his music!

Monday, September 17, 2012

Swedish House Mafia - Don't You Worry Child

Great song that is supposed to be the group's farewell effort, though I'm sure there will be more from the trio.  If hell froze over and got the Eagles to come back, I think it is a safe bet that there will be more from  the Swedish House Mafia in the future!

In the mean time, please listen to the song.  The video is below.

Please support the artists and buy their songs!

Sunday, September 16, 2012

The Shins - Simple Song

The song reminds me of Elton John's Your Song; however, don't let the title fool you. The lyrics are anything but simple when considering all of the imagery in this song.

I especially love the last verse.  The fumbling attempts that we make at the start of a relationship are the things that endear us to the other person and become the shared memories most often replayed later (or that's what it seems like to me).  And "love's such a delicate thing that we do with nothing to prove" shows the ephemeral quality of love.  It is built on the every day acts of kindness and consideration rather than just eloquent words and grand gifts.  When singing about the charm he gave, it's not the gift itself that is special but the act of wearing it that is most important.

Please listen to the song and tell me if you agree.  The music and lyrics can be found in the video below.

Buy the song and support the artists!!

Saturday, September 15, 2012

The Kissaway Trail - New Lipstick

The Kissaway Trail has a cool sound across all of their songs on Sleep Mountain.   New Lipstick is one of the better songs but I wonder what it means.  Does the new lipstick hide the night's sad stories?  And is the city somehow responsible, providing tacit approval with its winking lights?  Or is it really all about new lipstick??

Support the artists and buy their music!!

Friday, September 14, 2012

Movie: Straw Dogs (2011)

I have not seen the original 1970s version to which many critics compared this movie, both positively and negatively.  After seeing this version, I don't believe I could stomach another try at this story line.

My movie summary is as follows:
  1. City slicker played by James Marsden moves back to his wife's old home town.  He has an Ivy League education to really draw a contrast to those ignorant rednecks in town.  
  2. His wife, played by Kate Bosworth, made it big as an actress and has never looked back until now.  
  3. To make things really interesting, there is a high school football hero of yesteryear who is still mad for Kate Bosworth.  Alexander SkarsgĂ„rd plays the football hero but looks so out of place that I hoped he would morph into the vampire he plays on True Blood.  Unfortunately, that did not happen.  
As you can probably guess, lots of quality fun ensues and tourism in the deep south has been set back for the foreseeable future.  It's not an accident that I cannot remember a single character's name in the movie...there's not a single character who is likable.  Most are irritating at best.  

Seriously though, I did learn a few things from this movie:
  • I already knew hunting invitations from sitting Vice Presidents were a dangerous thing, - now I know not to go hunting with people who don't like me but suddenly want to bond with me.  
  • Bear traps are a great centerpiece in any home - lots of opportunities for high jinks!
  • Holding a rifle while hitchhiking will likely keep people from stopping to give you a lift.
I would give this movie two stars out of five, based on the following:

More movie info can be found on IMDB.  And you can always buy the movie at Amazon!

Thursday, September 13, 2012

Alex Clare - Too Close

So what if this song represents crass commercialism as part of a Microsoft ad campaign for Internet Explorer (of all things). It is still a great song!

Alex Clare's album, Lateness of the Hour, is a good freshman effort.  The songs are heartfelt and his voice carries through the music.  He even made a seminal Prince song his own - a difficult task at best.  If you like Too Close, you should check out Treading Water and I Won't Let You Down as well.

Please listen to the music and lyrics on the video below.  Tell me what you think!

If you like the music, please support the artist and buy his song!

Wednesday, September 12, 2012

New Order - Bizarre Love Triangle

I love this song by New Order.  It was recently stuck in my head for a few days so I thought I would share it with everyone else as well.

It's an older song that was originally released in 1986.  However, the song holds up well over time and is still one that could play on the radio today (though there would have to be some female vocals by Sia to fit the current music pattern). 

Though most people have heard it at least once, almost no ever knows that the title of the song is Bizarre Love Triangle.  I love the music and the lyrics are intelligent.  I could hear this song over and over again (and have).  Hope you enjoy the song!

Support the group and buy their song!!

Tuesday, September 11, 2012

Movie: The High Cost of Living (2010)

This was a good movie.  That may be in part due to my lack of any expectations when I started watching it.  The characters are not explored in real depth but the story feels real though simple, as seen below:
  1. Man is in a downward spiral, wasting his life away
  2. Man hits pregnant woman with his car and then drives off
  3. Surprisingly, man's conscience bothers him and therein lies a story
There are few surprises and you'll be able to figure out most of what happens.  The acting is capable - Zach Braff is always watchable.  While there was little chemistry with his co-star, Isabelle Blais, it played well in the movie since the two were from separate worlds with little in common.

For me, the movie was an object lesson about the difference between redemption and forgiveness.  And more importantly, demonstrating that no one is beyond redemption.  

I would give this movie three stars out of five.  Stars are given as follows:

Buy the movie at Amazon!

Monday, September 10, 2012

The Temper Trap - Fader

The Temper Trap's Fader starts off with the singer stranded on a boat with the hot sun beating down on him.  I think the boat represents being stuck in a relationship that is adrift and so off-course that it is likely never to find its way, where the two people involved are in a constant state of torment. 

To me, "talking don't change a thing" means that all the talk in the world will not right this ship.  In fact, "words don't sink, it swims" could mean that all of the words from further conversation just does more harm, generating flotsam that gets in the way of the figurative ship.

On the other hand, I could be totally off and it is a boat ride that's totally gone wrong!  Hope you like the song.

Support the group and buy their music!!

Sunday, September 9, 2012

Alanis Morissette - Spiral

This song is from Alanis Morissette's new album, havoc and bright lightsSpiral is one of the really standout songs on the album, very emotional.  When I listen to the song, I'm left wondering what all those voices are saying to her?  Also noteworthy, I think this is the only song I've ever heard that uses the word "benevolent" in the lyrics!

Support the artist by buying her music!!

Saturday, September 8, 2012

Yuna - Deeper Conversation

A friend sent me Yuna's A Deeper Conversation and asked me what I thought.  My reply was that any song that started out asking "if my favorite color is blue" was a winner in my book!  Great song coupled with an amazing voice.

Music and lyrics are on the video below.

Friday, September 7, 2012

Imagine Dragons - Round and Round

Round and Round by Imagine Dragons is an interesting song with a lot of imagery.  Everything seems to come back full circle in the song as suggested by the title.  Even the relationship is a return to the past, though he vows that he"won't run away this time."  I wonder if the "guarding a tower of ancients" is about repeating the mistakes of the past (repeating cycles through generations).  Can the "shooting down arrows of patience," be taken as knocking down the patient gestures of the singer?  In any case, it seems like a hopeful song where the singer seems determined to fix an issue from the past and help someone heal.  And that can never be a bad thing, right? 
The group seems very talented.  Their studio recordings seem inspired and each one different from the last.  However, most of the videos on YouTube are live recordings where the quality is horrible.  Their Continued Silence EP is definitely worth buying!  Below is a link to an interview where they share the fact that Imagine Dragons is an anagram for a phrase.  Not sure what the phrase is but if anyone figures it out, please share!  Interview - The Mystery Behind Imagine Dragons   

Thursday, September 6, 2012

Grouplove - Love Will Save Your Soul

Love Will Save Your Soul is arguably the best song on Grouplove's Album titled Never Trust a Happy Song.  The album title says it all  - the song sounds like a happy song but the lyrics seem to point to the search for love as "a hunt for gold."  I'm such a trusting soul but I blame the up tempo nature of the song coupled with lots of enthusiasm for lulling me into thinking this is an anthem for love.  Rather, it is sarcastically saying that chasing love is a fool's game and that it won't keep you from growing old and feeling alone.  Please listen and tell me if you agree.

Support the group and buy their music!!

Wednesday, September 5, 2012

Young the Giant - Cough Syrup

Cough Syrup by Young the Giant is an interesting song.  Sometimes I like to take the easy path and explain the song as an addiction to any drug, including cough syrup.  And possibly blame this song for having to show identification when I buy cough syrup at the drug store.

Other times, I think that the cough syrup is the remedy for whatever ails the singer. Whether it's actually for healing or ending the pain, it seems like the solution he needs since "a dark world aches for a splash of the sun."  I love that line - it is so descriptive!

Whatever his problem, it is so big and overwhelming that he cannot even "find a way to see this straight" to "some fortune that [he] should have found by now."  It sounds like a dig at his own lack of success in not having that fortune yet, one that seemed once assured.

Tuesday, September 4, 2012

Of Monsters and Men - Dirty Paws

Nothing drives me more crazy than not understanding a song, unless it's not understanding a song but still being utterly enthralled by it.  Of Monsters and Men is an amazing group with lots of great songs but Dirty Paws stands out.  I'm not sure of the symbolism - the net provides an abundance of meanings from fractured relationships to World War II.  I'm not sure any of those are correct but I love hearing the song!

Support the artists and buy their music!!

Monday, September 3, 2012

Angus and Julia Stone - The Devil's Tears

The first song of the day is The Devil's Tears by Angus and Julia Stone.  It's a beautiful song - think it's about a person staying true to someone in his heart even as he goes astray to the Devil's temptations.  Tell me if you agree.

This brother and sister group is insanely talented.  They have several albums together and apart.  Each are amazing as solo artists but I think that their music together is more than the sum of their parts.  

Support the artists and buy their song!!