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.
And here we are. New music from a man who, more than most, could rest on his laurels and past glory and simply cash in on reunion tours. New music which continues to be thoughtful and engaging and haunting. Plant’s new album arrives in a couple weeks and it does not disappoint. But let’s be honest, when those familiar backing vocals come in around a minute into the track, shivers.
Party Beck is almost universally my favorite Beck. This is party Beck and I thank him.
Mick Jagger released some new solo music around his 74th birthday just a few weeks back. He is not holding back on this song influenced by what’s happening in the world at the moment. It’s a gritty, reggae-industrial-blues romp with stream of consciousness lyrics which snarl and stick.
This is not for the feint of heart. Or hearing. This is Manson unleashed. Heavy hitting for when you need to be kicking out the things which bedevil you.
Well huh. Liam Gallagher is finally releasing a solo album. And, as much as I had feared he may had ruined his voice, he sounds good. This, a heart on the sleeve admission of past behavior, sounds like Oasis at their John Lennon inspired best. Other tracks from the upcoming album have also been pretty good. So, again, huh. Meanwhile, his brother is gearing up to release another album already.
The groove is expansive. The vocals, suitably moody in the versus, open up with the chorus for something altogether pleasant. With its DNA in the 80’s, The Horrors pull in more and more contemporary elements as the song breathes and evolves. Made for walking the city wearing headphones and taking in the world.
I’v been a fan of McPherson’s brand of rockabilly inspired modern rock for some time. This seems like a step forward? Maybe? Queens Of The Stone Age frontman Josh Homme is onboard as producer and you’d be forgiven if you thought it sounded more like the Black Keys than said Queens. No matter. Turn it up!
Because no one can slip the word contrive into a song like this guy. Morrissey has been hit or miss over the past few years, but this first taste of his upcoming album seems to find him working with some new production elements and most importantly, a hook. So yeah. I’ll take this.
Did you catch the trailer for the new Thor movie? If you did, this is what was playing through most of it. Magic Sword is a band built upon a story, turned into a comic book, with a soundtrack. They have found their way to video games and music festivals alike, and their live shows combine their backstory with visuals, props, and on at least one occasion, a city orchestra. Super fun.
I understand if this isn’t your usual type of thing. I totally get it. But goodness this man understands grief. Or, at least, how to sing about it.
I can listen to this all damn day. Self described psychedelic singer Curtis Harding admits to having roots in Gospel music and it is that sound which provides a little something special to this R&B jam. Yes, it feels like you’re stepping back in time. And when he goes into falsetto mode, I immediately hit repeat.
Tori Amos always gets the benefit of the doubt. She has earned that over the years. I am really intrigued by this new track which, once again, shows just how much Tori is in debt to Kate Bush for so much of what she does best. Is Prog-Folk a thing? Because if it isn’t, it should be and if it is, this is it. Musically adventurous, with changing time structures and elements which come and go with a precision that seems fueled by the instrumentation around it. It doesn’t always go where you think it will and before you know it, you’re caught up in the whole mix.
If you ever have a chance to see this woman in concert, do so. I experienced all that is Lizzo outside on a brisk spring afternoon earlier this year and she, over the course of 40 minutes, made sure that every person who was in front of that stage was 100% engaged and having the time of their lives. So much terrific energy in her performances and her sense of humor comes through loud and clear here. “I AM MY INSPIRATION!”
Byrdsian chamber pop from indie-rock’s band of the moment. Think early Teenage Fanclub, parts of the first Stone Roses album and some early Brit Pop or Los Angeles’ 80’s Paisley Underground.
Speaking of beloved indie rock bands. After a seven year break, North London band Clientele return with more of what made them so popular. Just enough earnest drama, muted horns emerge from within the pastoral arrangement. Lush backing vocals. Fingerpicked acoustic guitar atop it all. For fans of Nick Drake and sweet, alluring folk pop.
I will fight anyone who has a problem with this love letter to 70’s MOR radio jams. Anyone. I can’t find one thing I don’t love about it. The piano intro, with the hand claps, and the drop down to the verse. The verse. The way the fuzzed out guitar carries him along through the chorus. The backing vocals and lead licks. The way the story plays out. And the solo. Because of course.
I totally understand if you already hate this song. I do. But I bet you catch yourself whistling it later.
Released 40 years ago this month and still one of the most impactful songs I’ve ever experienced. If you are a fan and you haven’t seen this video featuring producer Tony Visconti explaining how they recorded and produced the track, do so. Amazing.
For previous editions of The Playlist, see the growing archive here.
Click here for the Spotify playlist.