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.
Beck – “Uneventful Days”
Apparently, Beck’s chillwave era has begun. I am ok with this.
Tiana Major9 & EARTHGANG – “Collide”
The moment I realized I had been listening to this song on repeat for over 20 minutes was when I knew I had to include this here on the playlist. I can’t really tell you much about the artists but I know that, having heard another song from the soundtrack for the film Queen & Slim featuring Travis Scott, this is something I will be spending time with. “Collide” is instantly enthralling. A groove, heavy-lidded and supple, provides a lush foundation for terrific vocals which are traded back and forth: pure bliss.
Mike Shinoda – “fine”
Fresh music from the Linkin Park alumni. This is “fine.” (I’ll show myself out now.)
Noah Cyrus – “July” Featuring Leon Bridges.
This song is haunting me. Not. Even. Kidding. I have awoken from sleep several times in the past week with this playing in my head. I have no problem with this.
Coldplay – “Orphans”
Welcome back fellas. I get that there are a lot of people who hate these guys. I am not one of them. I appreciate that they make big music that isn’t afraid to reach and soar and take us all along. This new album features Chris Martin and Co. expanding their sound over the course of a 2 record set while still serving up the kind of modern rock that got them where they are today.
Sudan Archives – “Glorious”
To think that this woman is just getting started. “Glorious” is from Sudan Archive’s debut album Athena. This woman is a violinist, a singer songwriter and a producer. This isn’t about musical genres. It’s about discovery. Everything I have heard from her so far has been really good.
Mumford & Sons – “Blind Leading The Blind”
Mumford and Sons has been including this in their live set while on the road in support of their latest album. The band finally had the chance to commit it to, uh, bytes and such, and have shared it as a stand alone release. I think Marcus Mumford has some thoughts about the state of the world.
Mikal Cronin – “Shelter”
If I tell you that I’ve been a little obsessed over the arrangements in this song, it is because when artists usually channel Led Zeppelin, they go for the low hanging musical fruit (looking your way Greta Van Fleet). What I appreciate about Cronin’s take here is the string arrangements that recall some of the band’s later work. Having just made a reference to musical elements from more than 40 years ago, it seems strange to announce that the approach feels fresh here. It works so well. Cronin’s latest album is something to appreciate with headphones. Good stuff.
HAIM – “Now I’m In It”
How are these sisters not superstars yet? Their talents are obscenely abundant. They just get better with every release. “Now I’m In It” is the latest track from their forthcoming third album. These sisters deliver a sleek and slinky groove, guitars, keyboards and harmonies colliding throughout a song that builds up and up and up, layers and layers, which fall away for a heavenly bridge that allows everyone a chance to catch their breath. And then we are off again and I think that somewhere Stevie Nicks is nodding her head and saying “You’re welcome for the inspiration” because “Edge of Seventeen” is part and parcel of this song’s DNA. And we all win.
Saint Motel – “Van Horn”
Toe tapping, catchy alt-pop from a band that has always been thoughtful with their videos and live shows. There’s a hell of an ear worm happening here.
Pinegrove – “Phase”
A winsome take on indie-rock, jangly guitars that elbow their away, all stagger and gallup, a pliable vocal, and a healthy amount of angst that all comes together with a huge chorus, resplendent with steel guitar.
Maren Morris – “Bones” Featuring Hozier
I was a fan of this song from Maren Morris when I heard it earlier this year. Morris has updated the song, turning into a duet with Hozier. Bonus!
Michael Kiwanuka – “Hero”
Kiwanuka’s guitar phrasing here is every bit as effective a hook as his wonderful, expressive voice. This London based artist has just released his latest collection of Neo Soul Rock and Roll (I hear Bill Wither’s influence at work) and the folks over here seem to be very impressed.
Rex Orange County – “10/10”
With 10/10, Rex Orange County. AKA Alexander O’Connor, comes so close to absolute prime cheese that I give him points for his bravado. Ultimately though, it is another charming song from an artist who seems to have the demeanor of your average slightly geeky teen. It might be because he kind of is. And I can relate.
Portland – “You Misread Me”
I’ve got Joe to thank for introducing me to this Belgian band. Theirs is a dreamy take on indie-pop with light, airy synths and bright vocals.
Devon Gilfillian – “Unchained”
I met Devon early this year when he was in town for a concert. He came by the station and performed in our listener lounge and I was instantly taken with his music. This is only his second song released to radio and it backs up my hunches about what he can do. This is meaty stuff.
Sam Smith – “I Feel Love”
This version of Donna Summer’s iconic disco classic is about as true to the original as possible. I’m not sure it should be anything but. Sam Smith teams up with Disclosure to make this happen.
Lee “Scratch” Perry – “Here Come The Warm Dreads” featuring Brian Eno
Lee “Scratch” Perry is a legendary reggae/dub performer and producer who is responsible for some of the genre’s most entertaining music. Brian Eno has been pushing musical boundaries his whole career. This is pretty fun and the title is a riff on one of Eno’s most famous songs.
Matt Berninger – “Walking On A String” with Phoebe Bridgers
That moment when Phoebe starts singing and I lose my shit… Matt Berninger from The National shares a song from Between Two Ferns: The Movie.
SebastiAn – “Doorman” Featuring SYD
French producer SebastiAn returns after a long break with a sweeping collection of electronic pop. This dense and layered song features Syd, who recently released a solo album having made a name for herself fronting the band called The Internet and being part of Odd Future.
Billie Eilish – “Everything I Wanted”
Undoubtedly the most interesting pop music phenom of the current music era, Eilish has broken just about all the rules in her climb up the charts. This is relatively…straightforward. And yet it bears much of what we recognize as Eilish trademarks.
THE CLASSIC: Arlo Guthrie – “Alice’s Restaurant”
Because, November. There was one Thanksgiving when I did not program this song for our weekday lunch specialty feature and you would have thought I had murdered Muppets on Main street in the middle of the afternoon. I barely escaped with my life. So, for those of you not familiar with the lore of the most famous song about a trash dispute of all time, check this out.
For previous editions of The Playlist, see the growing archive here.
See the Spotify playlist here.