Music is a little like food and clothes. These are areas where it’s probably worthwhile for one to explore & expand their tastes. The Playlist is assembled each month by Dappered’s very own music correspondent, Tim Johnstone. Tim is a former Virgin Records Label Rep & current award winning Program Director at KRVB, which was awarded the FMQB AAA station of the year markets 50+. You can also catch his work on Fridays when he assembles the Weekend Dossier. Got a Spotify account? You’ll find a link to this month’s playlist at the end of the post.
Totally worth the wait. These Pacific Northwest favorites return with a more expansive sound than on their previous records but the update follows the spirit of the band. Known for raucous singalong and energetic live performances, those elements are clearly represented here. It doesn’t take long for the song to go from a George Harrison-esque verse to a chorus that hints at what’s to come. Songs Of Light will be available this September.
Nearly a year after Beck dropped his return to beat based modern rock “Dreams,” we get the next preview from his upcoming project. And, huh. This is already being hailed on the interwebs but I have not been able to get a my mind around this quite yet. There are several intriguing ideas here and a few classic Beck off the wall stream-of-consciousness rhymes. And it is newsworthy. So I’m sharing.
As my favorite editor says, “So glad these guys are still carrying the flag for 21st century rock.” That is no small thing.
Seemingly out of nowhere, ABC return with the first taste from Lexicon Of Love II. To say that this news stunned me is an enormous understatement. Because, reasons. ABC’s debut album Lexicon Of Love was a tour de force blue eyed soul masterpiece. So much could go wrong. But, here we are with a song that could have been from the original recordings. “Viva Love” features all of the elements of the original album that made it so special. Terrific production. Definitely a way-back kind of experience and quite welcome.
Jamila Woods – “Heavn”
I don’t know anything about this Chicago poet/singer. She has performed with some high profile artists like Chance The Rapper. This is breezy stuff, with lyrics acknowledging The Cure and beats borrowed from The Roots. When Woods’ layered backing vocals sweep in they swirl around dragging you right in. Definite summer jam. Look for a debut album to land soon. This song doesn’t appear to be available for purchase yet.
Three sisters from a small town in Oregon bring it on an enormously infectious introduction to their oeuvre. Think of a highly caffeinated First Aid Kit. So much to like about this.
This is a bigger deal than most Americans realize. Unless you were around for their initial run, you may very well never have heard of them. When my younger pals rave about 90’s rock, these guys are where my mind goes. One genuine classic album, another faintly flawed release, some remarkable concerts and the end. But recently, high profile concerts and now, the first single to a brand new album. And this new single, to my ears, will make many, many people very, very happy. This is classic Stone Roses, robust guitars, strident rhythm section, and Ian Brown’s multi tracked vocals.
WE INTERRUPT THIS PLAYLIST…to share the single most exciting bit of rock and roll news to come down the pike in some time. Not even exaggerating. At all. Ok. Maybe a little bit. But C’MON!
EXPLICIT and possibly/probably NSFW. Maybe. Pretty much.
Sixteen years after the release of these Australian’s DJ-assemblage breakthrough single “Frontier Psychiatrist,” the band surprises the world with a follow up release. (Here’s another favorite from that first release.) That’s quite the break. And once again, they’re not quite like anything else out there. The video is appropriately bonkers. This is, once again, built upon samples. The difference being, this time we get verses from an MC which weave within the bier-haus brass and polka foundation and the whole damn thing somehow works. The perfect summer party playlist attention getter.
Erick Serna – “March of Flames”
Fans of the NETFLIX series “Peaky Blinders” may be familiar with this song from Erick Serna that is featured in the trailer for the latest season. I can’t pretend to know much about Serna, who performs with his band The Killing Floor. But this is gritty, dirty, soiled end-of-the-world rock and roll. We can always use some of that.
This London born artist has lived in Los Angeles for some time. There is something raw about Brigg’s big bold voice and paired, as it is here, with dubstep production elements and over the top backing vocals, the results are anything but subtle. But it is hard to not get caught up in the whole thing.
Whereupon Julian Casablancas steers the Strokes Ship through a 70’s inspired shuffle and delivers vocals at once warbled and distorted. The chorus attacks in a flash, Casablancas at the high end of his range, imploring. And then, the bridge, electronic and retro, vocals buried below the mix. By the time the chorus comes back you’ve been taken for a hell of a ride. Great stuff.
THE CLASSIC: The Jesus and Mary Chain – “Head on”
Sure, The Pixies covered this pretty well. Better than that even. But the original still carries with it all the fuzzed out energy the band brought to their music. At their best, the J&MC bled the Beach Boys’ power pop through a wall of distortion and feedback. It was a glorious din. And this is among their best.
For previous editions of The Playlist, see the growing archive here.
Click here for the Spotify playlist.