My Playlist (April 2010)

Everyone please welcome a new recurring column to my website, my monthly playlist.  This is just a series of songs that I have been listening to for the past month.  Note how the songs gravitate to being more recent.

1. Jackie Wilson Said (I’m In Heaven When You Smile) – Van Morrison

To begin the playlist, I start with the most fun song ever written.  Morrison, my personal favorite vocalist, spends most of his hooks here on meaningless “doo doo”s and “ding-a-ling”s (yes, I know), but wait until he drops the parenthetical title, which is the sweetest lyric ever put to song: “I’m in Heaven when you smile”.

2. Kick Drum Heart – The Avett Brothers

Speaking of “awww”-inspiring choruses, “Kick Drum Heart”‘s chorus-finishing “my heart like a kick drum/my love like a voice”.  It’s another gleeful little ditty that firts perfectly behind “Jackie Wilson Said”.

3. World Sick – Broken Social Scene

To escape from the whimsy of the first two songs, I throw in an epic like Broken Social Scene’s “World Sick”, the lead track and single from their upcoming Forgiveness Rock Record, due out May fourth.  While “World Sick” lacks the soundscaping genius of some of the tracks from their 2002 masterpiece You Forgot It In People, its pure majesty makes it the best song released since at least TV On The Radio’s 2008 gem “DLZ”.

4. Alex Chilton – The Replacements

I don’t need to explain why I was listening to this month.  If you’re reading this article you’re probably familiar with the death of Alex Chilton, which is why The Replacements’ power pop anthem keeps the current mood of the playlist extravagant.

5. September Gurls – Big Star

Speaking of Alex Chilton, the first of two songs from Radio City on this playlist shows up, and it’s the biggest chorus that Chilton has ever laid down. The tone of the playlist remains somewhat anthemic, but it’s hinting towards becoming more exciting.

6. O.N.E. – Yeasayer

Yeasayer’s song O.N.E. is on a level of fun that almost surpasses “Jackie Wilson Said”.  This weird futurisitic pop gem doesn’t waste a moment.  It spends every second it can on a perfectly built hook, stemming from its beginning delayed guitar that’s frighteningly reminiscent of Michael Jackson.

7. NYC-Gone, Gone – Conor Oberst

I found myself revisiting Oberts’s self-titled album again this month, hence the two songs from it.  The album, to me, far surpasses anything he ever did with Bright Eyes, and this shouting stomper is the pivotal point of both the album and this playlist.

8. Ativan Eyes – Ted Leo And The Pharmacists

As it goes, nearly every single song in this list has a huge chorus, and this song is no exception, though the chorus is less instantly memorable in terms of lyrics.  Wait until Ted Leo says his  line he’s penned: “So sick of cynics and I want something to trust in”.

9. Children’s Work – Dessa

Dessa’s A Badly Broken Code, an atmospheric hip hop record from the most talented member of Doomtree, remains my favorite of the year, and “Children’s Work” is so sharp lyrically and structurally that I listen to it at least twice as much as I do any other song on the album, which I still hear weekly.  This song slows the album to a more serious close.

10. Empire Ants – Gorillaz Featuring Little Dragon

Like “Children’s Work”, “Empire Ants” begins mellow, but this new Gorillaz song ends up exploding.  Despite this, it might be the most pleasant song to ever come from the band, maybe barring “19-2000”.

11. I Don’t Want To Die (In The Hospital) – Conor Oberst

It feels like this entire song is a chorus.  Its energy doesn’t even come close to letting up, and after the explosion of “Empire Ants”, that’s just what I need.

12. Duncan – Paul Simon

In this calm song that makes you feel like you’re laying on the grass looking up at the night, Paul Simon throws in atmospherics that most artists hadn’t yet tried.  Listen to the fitting acoustic guitar throughout, and then listen to the flutes that ultimately drown out the song.

13. Horn Intro – Modest Mouse

14. The World At Large – Modest Mouse

15. Float On – Modest Mouse

“Float On” was perhaps the most likable song of the aughts, but I can’t imagine listening to it without the other two on this list, the first of which being a ten second horn introduction to 2004’s Good News For People That Like Bad News and the second being “Float On”‘s gloomy, contemplative counterpart.  By the time “The World At Large” ends and the music starts ticking, the thud of the drums and the prompt ultra-glad vibes coming from “Float On” are made that much more effective.

16. I’m In Love With A Girl – Big Star

The frankest song ever written is this one.  It’s the perfect way to end the playlist following the month in which Alex Chilton met his unfortunate demise.

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Published in: on April 2, 2010 at 2:00 AM  Comments (1)  

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One CommentLeave a comment

  1. like the list


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