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.
This was something of a surprise. Because, honestly, any new music from Maynard James Keenan is a surprise these days. My favorite response to this song so far? MAYNARD TAKE MY MONEY GODDAMNIT! The other favorite went something like this: YAARGLEBBBFFFT!
Another surprise. Not just because this is the first new music from the band since 2004 (they have been working on a new album for a couple years). And it’s not because this is from yet another greatest hits collection. It is because this is one of the more flat-out joyful songs the band has ever released. From the outset, this is a different Tears For Fears. It is Arena Rock Tears For Fears. But it’s the chorus that is the real pay off here. It is a big giant burst of what the band has always excelled at, only decidedly positive. Can’t wait to hear the album, expected next year.
This woman has me wrapped around her fingers at the moment. This is raw, engaging and lovely even when the circumstances seem to be otherwise and is so immediate that I feel like I’m overhearing something I shouldn’t.
When he’s not making harmony driven indie rock with The New Pornographers, Dan Bejar records under the name Destroyer. He’s recently released his 16th record under that name (by my count) and he continues to create slightly weird, always intriguing warped pop. Arrangements are something Bejar excels at, and “Tinseltown” is draped in mid 80’s English sonic references.
Juke Ross went from teaching himself how to play guitar to getting signed to a major record label in about eighteen months. And he did so from Guyana. He’s just 22. He might be the definition of an old soul. He definitely has a gift. From the rhythm of his lyrics to the tone of his voice, he creates something that stands apart. Here’s another great song from his upcoming ep.
Trent Reznor & Atticus Ross – “Halloween” (John Carpenter cover)
At once creepy and claustrophobic, familiar and completely new. (Not for sale at this time.)
I’ve read somewhere that this is a comeback album but that doesn’t ring true to me. Calexico has been making solid southwest American desert rock ever since they disbanded their beloved outfit Giant Sand. For a song about what might be coming our way, this is the happiest song they’ve served up in a while. Not quite this generation’s “Santa Monica (Watch The World Die)” but I’ll take it.
Hey! You got EDM stuff in my Neo-R&B. You got Neo-R&B in my EDM stuff. Let’s grab a rad old-timey sample and take this to the next level. If I’m being honest, there’s a lot less of the electronics here than Leon’s brand of low-key sweetness.
Having lost her battle with cancer just about a year ago, this posthumous album gives fans one more collection of first rate old fashioned Rhythm & Blues. “Matter of Time” is classic Sharon Jones and the Dap-Kings. You can’t help but imagine how much great music Sharon would have given us.
Blitzen Trapper – “Wild and Reckless”
Thankfully, this Portland, OR band never settles on a singular sound. Instead, they’ve made their way through variations on the Americana genre the last several albums, but “Wild and Reckless” is something new and not so new at the same time. This song is from a stage production the band spent the “better part of a year producing.” So it should come as no surprise that one can hear elements of classic rock endeavors which have proceeded it. From Meatloaf to Springsteen, there are assorted nods to what has come before. And it’s 100% sincere. (Note: This gets released on 11/03/17.)
They’re back! And to be honest, this is about as straightforward as MGMT get. From an arrangement standpoint, sonically, this could have been released in 1986. It retains the band’s tendency for offbeat imagery and humor. But really, with the exception of the interlude before the final chorus, this is nearly an exercise in mid 80’s new wave.
I am not going to apologize for loving this grand, swooning ballad from the former lead singer of Walkmen. Leithauser has a voice made for this stuff, and indie-rock’s favorite chanteuse absolutely matches him note for note. It’s nearly a spectacle. This is a good thing.
THE CLASSIC: Geraldine Fibbers – “Dragon Lady”
This is not for the feint of heart. Geraldine Fibbers burned bright and fast and they would have been unimaginable without Nirvana. But The Fibbers were so very much Los Angeles. And this gut-wrenching track from their album “Lost Somewhere Between the Earth and My Home” is their defining moment. It is visceral, brutal and ecstatic. It is beautiful, ragged, raw and it is nearly unhinged. It is also cathartic as fuck and it makes me feel ALIVE with every listen. It was primal scream grunge and it still connects. A glorious din indeed.
For previous editions of The Playlist, see the growing archive here.
Click here for the Spotify playlist.