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 Reset. Got a Spotify account? You’ll find a link to this month’s playlist at the end of the post.
This is all sorts of fantastic. I’ve featured this Austin, TX band on a previous Playlist. They are back with a new album on the way and a terrific lead single. Check out their recent performance at Pickathon to appreciate what these guys are all about.
Sun drenched folk rock from a band that continues to evolve with confidence and a naturalness that befits the music. It’a a long way between Laurel Canyon’s eternal sunshine and the more subdued meteorological environment of Seattle, but the band stays true to their musical roots. This bodes well for the new album Living Mirage coming this May.
Just a month or so following the death of Mark Hollis of Talk Talk, we are reminded about the influence he has had on modern music. Oso Leone are a Spanish group who have shared a wonderful new song which is built upon the musical architecture Hollis built over the course of his career. This is lovely.
It’s not often you run across such an example of classic meat and potatoes Rock and Roll of this sort in this day and age. This is straight-up mid to late 70’s Americana-fueled ghosts of Springsteen past. It is as good as it is surprising.
It was only a matter of time and it is a delight to behold. Also, it’s not exactly PG-13. But if you are familiar with Lizzo (she is no stranger to The Playlist), you already knew this.
Yaaaaaaaaaasssss. I have Joe to thank for sending this my way. There is nothing new going on here and that is absolutely fine because what these guys to they do very well. A killer addition to any gym playlist.
One thing I respect about Portland, OR’s Pure Bathing Culture, the duo of Sarah Versprille and Daniel Hindman, is that they seem comfortable with the term soft rock. For those of a certain age, this brings back guilty pleasure favorites from once upon a time. Pure Bathing Culture update Fleetwood Mac’s late 70’s sound in a contemporary context.
When America’s legendary New Orlean’s band heads to Cuba, the results are everything you would hope for. Ben Jaffe has successfully steered this iconic band into new territory and exciting collaborations over the past 15 years. This new project, coming on the Sub Pop label, finds the band exploring the Cuban musical landscape and the results are really terrific. It was the dream of Jaffe’s father, who launched the band in the 1960’s, to trace the band’s musical heritage to their roots in Cuba. Now there is a documentary called “A Tuba To Cuba” which chronicles their visit.
A sad reminder of the talent lost with the death of Avicii last year. This is the first song released from an upcoming posthumous release of songs he was working on at the time of his passing. “SOS” features Aloe Blacc who, along with Avicii, produced this huge hit. This is entirely bittersweet. The album will be called Tim and will be released later this year. His family has started the Tim Bergling Foundation—which works to prevent mental illness and suicide and this album will help the foundation.
I am Scottish. This explains why I am such a sucker for this kind of sad-sack gloomy yet beautiful music. It’s in my blood. Hopefully there is a smidgeon of Scot’s blood in you so you too can wallow in this glorious din.
Shawn Smith was not Seattle’s most famous rock vocalist, but amongst Seattle’s musicians, he was a favorite. Smith died earlier this month, way too young. And not nearly famous enough. His voice – a rich, soulful, booming voice which you hear on his work with Brad (alongside Pearl Jam’s Stone Gossard, Jeremy Toback, and Regan Hagar), Satchel and Pigeonhed. Their song “Battleflag” was remixed by the London producers Lo-Fidelity All Stars and became a hit in the mid 90’s. Check out other performances here and here and here.
This is the very perfect example of what Isaac Brock has been serving up via Modest Mouse since their inception. He is, by the sounds of things, not particularly happy at the moment.
Jesse Wilson is another Dappered Playlist alumni. She was a member of Muddy Magnolias who I featured a few years back. Wilson has sung on albums and tours with Alicia Keys. “Clap Your hands” is mercenary grade R&B. It is meaty and grimy, sensuous and insurgent, and Wilson’s voice is empowered by all of it. This is some righteous stuff and I can not wait to hear more.
Dan Boeckner has made all sorts of terrific music through projects like Wolf Parade, Divine Fits (with Britt Daniel of Spoon), and Handsome Furs and Atlas Strategic. Operators is something he started before Wolf Parade reunited a few years back and I’m happy to see that he’s back with Sam Brown and Devojka for more synth-rock goodness. You are warned: the Dan Boeckner rabbit hole is deep and rewarding.
I am quite happy that a particular 90’s indie rock aesthetic is making it’s way back into rotation. This made for a very happy music nerd.
What originally attracted me to The National was their more somber and moving songs like Fake Empire from their BOXER album. “Light Years” is a return to that sound. There is a gravity at work here. Piano dominates, with sparse arrangements providing a base for Matt Berninger’s hopeful vocals. The video is part of a movie that Mike Mills had made with Alicia Vikander called I Am Easy To Find. You can learn more about that here.
While I was digging the Cerny Brothers take on a very Springsteen-esque brand of heartland Rock and Roll, Joe has been reading the man’s autobiography. And he shares this month’s Classic with a really good observation. It’s likely that the younger generation may have a distorted view on what the man is all about. His fan base has long been as strident as Jimmy Buffet’s Parrotheads. His fame from his larger than life personality performances via his MTV hits belies his talents as a story teller and musician. This video is a good reminder that the man is a genuinely gifted performer.
For previous editions of The Playlist, see the growing archive here.
See the Spotify playlist here.