🎧🎚🎵 February 1, 2019 8:32 AM   Subscribe

End of another week, let's talk about something else that is not related to politics. Let's talk about music. What are you listening to? How do you listen? On your phone on the bus? In the car on your way to work? At home with some high-end audio equipment? Are you strictly listening digital? Analog? Do you stream your music? Do you only listen to records? Are you a collector? Is there a certain genre you hate or avoid? Do you pirate your music or pay for it legally? Is there a single or an album that you've been listening to on repeat? Is there something you're looking forward to being released later this year? Let's turn the volume up. Stay safe and be kind to each other.
posted by Fizz to MetaFilter-Related at 8:32 AM (144 comments total) 18 users marked this as a favorite

I've been jamming to Why Hasn't Everything already Disappeared? by Deerhunter and Assume Form by James Blake. Both have been on repeat for the last week. James Blake in particular has sunk it's teeth into me, it's fully of sexy r&b dubstep beats. Just what I've been needing on these brutally cold and short winter days.
posted by Fizz at 8:36 AM on February 1 [2 favorites]


I've been listening to Greta Van Fleet, and I like them, and I'm wondering why we don't see more of this -- the cover band that's not really a cover band but it sounds just like a very good cover band doing things you like.
posted by Cool Papa Bell at 8:36 AM on February 1 [1 favorite]


Also, Andrew Bird's second album from his Echolocations project Rivers is something you should really be listening to. It's kind of amazing the way he uses the sounds of nature and integrates them into his music.
posted by Fizz at 8:40 AM on February 1 [7 favorites]


I've been working on writing copy for a bunch of materials at work. It's hard to focus so I went on Spotify and found my stand-by essay-writing music from college: Billy McLaughlin, particularly Fingerdance.

You know that scene in Zoolander where "Relax" comes on and he attacks the Prime Minister? (sorry for the spoiler) Well that's Billy for me. I hear the first couple of notes and I'm in the Zone.

I listened to that CD so much in college that there was a standing policy - anyone studying in my room (my roommate and I were kind of the hub of activity) could request that I change music at any time. I can still hear my friend known as Cheese , who had been reading quietly, suddenly yelling "Can we listen to ANYTHING but Billy!"
posted by Emmy Rae at 8:44 AM on February 1


I spend a lot of time listening to the hair metal station on SiriusXM. That's my go-to driving/motorcyle riding music. Yes, I am an almost-52-year-old white guy.

At work, I mostly stream my "My Music" channel on YouTube, which is... eclectic, at the least, occasionally resulting in transitions like "I'm Out" by Ciara and Nicki Minaj leading into "Music Box Dancer" by Frank Mills and on into "Don't Forget Me (When I'm Gone)" by Glass Tiger.

I am giddily excited for the upcoming Jonathan Coulton album, Some Guys, which is him covering a bunch of soft rock from the 70s and is so squarely in my wheelhouse as to be completely capable of steering the ship.

If the Kickstarter link to the Coulton album is against policy, mods, feel free to remove the link
posted by hanov3r at 8:56 AM on February 1 [2 favorites]


At some point a few days ago Spotify shuffled on after the end of one of my heavy rotation albums, either Chvrches' Love Is Dead or Metric's Fantasies (both of which I will heartily and forever recommend along with the rest of each band's discography).

And it landed on this spacey, brooding, low-throated song by Warpaint called Billie Holiday, and it's been stuck in my head ever since. I like the whole album it's off so far, but that song is so aggressively structurally turned back in on itself that its insidious earwormery. It's ended up being the unofficial soundtrack of the painting I've been working on for the last few days; I've listened to it a few times, but it's also just crept into my head during pauses and quiet moments and in the weird slightly restless sleep I have when I'm really neck deep on a days-long stretch of painting work.
posted by cortex (staff) at 8:56 AM on February 1 [4 favorites]


Bonus chance discovery this morning, that's threatening to be nearly insistent, also spacey production and repetition but with some big loud energy at times that Billie Holiday steadfastly avoids: Silk by Wolf Alice.
posted by cortex (staff) at 8:59 AM on February 1 [2 favorites]


Not at all related, but yesterday, I sent the following text to my kid:

I have eaten
the Starburst
that were on
the island

and which
you were probably
saving
for later

Forgive me
they were delicious
so sweet
and so chewy
posted by Ruki at 9:05 AM on February 1 [10 favorites]


I have been loving an album called "Clear Language" by Balmorhea (spotify). I also just recently discovered Nick Cicierega's Mouth Sounds which I find endlessly amusing.
posted by gauche at 9:07 AM on February 1


My recent discoveries:

Envelope Generator - Songs I Hate - Poppy synthwave

AK - Glitchhop. I'm really enjoying FAQ and function(){.
posted by suetanvil at 9:08 AM on February 1 [1 favorite]


hanov3r, I just clicked through into your profile to see if you're my friend Todd (spoiler: you aren't) because he is also an almost 52-year-old white guy who is super pumped about that Jonathan Coulton album.

I've been listening to the Beastie Boys' entire catalog on a loop for the past month and obnoxiously telling everyone in my life how amazing the Beastie Boys are. Especially Paul's Boutique. Most people my age (mid 40s) did not fail to notice this the first time around, it seems.
posted by something something at 9:11 AM on February 1 [9 favorites]


Related answer, I’ve been listening to the Amazon music Best Alternative of 2018 playlist as I clean. The second song, Choke, is by one of my favorite new bands, IDKHBTFM. They have a delightfully weird concept of acting like they’re a forgotten 80s band and their videos are presented as recently found footage, located by a kid cleaning out the basement. They released their EP with a freaking cassette option. They also put on one hell of a live show.
posted by Ruki at 9:12 AM on February 1 [1 favorite]


BTW, I've mostly been listening to 90's industrial lately, in case some of you thought I might be cool.
posted by suetanvil at 9:13 AM on February 1 [7 favorites]


We went to see Roomful of Teeth (homepage) last night.

This (youtube link to their performance of Caroline Shaw's "Partita" a couple years ago) is what they sound like.
posted by platitudipus at 9:17 AM on February 1 [2 favorites]


The thing I am most excited about this moment is the new Business of Dreams album that's dropping from Slumberland Records today! Listen to this single! It's so good. Corey Cunningham (from Terry Malts) is an indie pop genius. I'm also really excited for the new album from Priests that's coming out soon.

At work I listen to KALX, Spotify, my home server of MP3s, or now a turntable with clearance bin records. At home, it's usually KALX or my records. I wouldn't say I collect vinyl, but I have a lot of records. Well, I guess I should say I collect Billy Childish records because he makes up a 10% of my collection (like 200 pieces?). It should be more.
posted by kendrak at 9:20 AM on February 1 [2 favorites]


This morning, I've been listening to Mary Lattimore's "Hundreds of Days Remixes" (sad that the companion enamel pin sold out before I could order one) on Spotify on my work computer, to which I've added a Massdrop x Grace Design Standard DAC and Audioengine A5+ speakers.

More generally, I still like physical media, preferably records but CDs or tapes are also okay (I have an old car, so I've enjoyed the resurgence of cassette releases). I'm kind of a collector, though I try to stick to a one-in, one-out kind of thing. Let's see, what else... I like things to sound nice, but my ears aren't great and I'm also kind of a cheapskate, so I usually stick to budget-ish stuff. For portable listening, I use my phone with an AudioQuest Dragonfly DAC and one of a few sets of headphones (AKG 550, Sennheiser Momentum on-ears, Master & Dynamic MH-30, and I have a set of Bluetooth earbuds I use when exercising).

Mostly ambient music, jazz, and instrumental hip-hop, though my listening interests are all over the place. I'm looking forward to Makaya McCraven's 'Where We Come From (CHICAGOxLONDON Mixtape),' both the physical copy I ordered and the digital version, which I'll probably listen to after lunch.
posted by box at 9:27 AM on February 1 [2 favorites]


I have a toddler who requests the Steven Universe soundtrack on nearly a daily basis, so a lot of that.

In the evenings we put on a '70s soul station on Accuradio. We also listen to the local indy public radio station--WPFW "Jazz and Justice"--on a regular-ish basis. It's hit-or-miss, but when it hits, it hits.

Lately I've been replaying THEESatisfaction's album 2012, awE naturalE, quite a bit.
posted by duffell at 9:36 AM on February 1 [2 favorites]


The Clientele, "Everything you see tonight is different from itself" and "Lunar Days", both of which are substantially about how London is emptying due to real estate prices. The album, Music for the Age of Miracles, is as if someone had designed an album for me personally.

What's so great is that it's an album about being an older person who was once a young person about town. If you listen to "As Night Is Falling", which they recorded in 2000, and then Music for the Age of Miracles....well, it's very comforting when you're an older person who was once a young person about town and isn't the same person anymore either.

Also listening to:
The Lucksmiths' "There Is A Boy That Never Goes Out"
The Snapped Ankles' Come Play The Trees (and there's a new Snapped Ankles album coming!!!)

Also, everything by The Granite Shore - for some reason they really seem to capture the exact mix of bitterness, anger and alienation that seem to characterize the past few years. So It Begins

Also, if you want a song about Brexit, abjection and toxic masculinity, I recommend the Moonlandingz' The Rabies Are Back. Also about werewolves. It's also a song which addresses women as "ladies" in a sort of ironic manner that really hits some kind of spot.

And if you want something happy and lovely, how about the Meat Puppets' Swimming Ground.

This year I can't figure out if I'm one of those horrible Americans who listens primarily to British music that can never have the same meaning for me that it does for someone actually from the UK or if I've just fallen into the habit of mostly reading reviews on The Quietus.
posted by Frowner at 9:40 AM on February 1 [4 favorites]


I just listened to this interview with Linda Ronstadt on Rhino.com and I am so excited for "Live in Hollywood" -- a 1980 HBO concert out today on CD and vinyl for the first time.
posted by maurice at 9:46 AM on February 1 [3 favorites]


For years I've listened to music almost entirely on my tinny laptop speakers... or on my clock radio! I'm lucky to have some FM radio stations here that I really like (especially WFMU). But just last week I finally got around to putting a little amplifier on the fairly good stereo speakers that had been sitting unused in my living room for years, and I plugged an ancient phone into the amp as a music player. It's amazing how much better that setup sounds than tinny laptop speakers! (The clock radio is honestly pretty good, though.)

The trick is when I want to listen to the radio in both rooms - I have live FM radio in the bedroom and then I stream the same station on the phone in the living room because I don't have a radio in there. The internet stream is generally up to 30 seconds behind the FM broadcast, so walking between the two rooms is like a musical time warp. It's particularly confusing when the delay happens to be about the same length as a verse of a song.
posted by moonmilk at 9:54 AM on February 1 [3 favorites]


I had reached the point where I was sick to death of all the music on my phone because I felt like I had listened to everything about 65 times. Enter Spotify playlists. Recently, someone had an Ask where they asked which songs people never got sick of listening to, and it turned into a Spotify playlist. So I took the ones I liked best from that playlist and made my own. Also, the North American Frank Turner Army on Facebook makes a playlist every month; everyone gets to post one song and one awesome guy makes a Spotify playlist out of that. I make my own playlist from that too. A never-ending stream of new stuff to listen to on my commute! Mostly because of the Frank Turner playlist, I've become mildly obsessed with Cory Brannan (ok fine I have a total celebrity crush on him), especially his newest, Adios.

I'm fluent in both classical and not-classical, so at work I rotate among steaming WQXR (NYC classical station), KUSC (LA classical station), and KMFA (Austin classical station).

Oh, and Sonos has changed my life at home. I'm not kidding.
posted by holborne at 10:00 AM on February 1 [1 favorite]


I love country music, but I live in the Boston area. I can't tell anyone, sigh.
posted by Melismata at 10:24 AM on February 1 [10 favorites]


Since I committed to getting back into some kind of halfway decent shape, I've been dragging my carcass to the gym on the regular.

As a result of this FPP from this morning, my gym playlist for today was a shuffle of the first four Black Sabbath albums minus the slower tunes, plus Heaven and Hell for a little Ronnie James Dio-era Sabbath. It was a very productive mix.

I may have done a little bit of low-key-down-by-the-waist air guitaring between sets.

*throws horns*

\m/
posted by mandolin conspiracy at 10:25 AM on February 1 [5 favorites]


I bought a cd (A CD!!!!) of Mariah Carey's self-titled 1990 album at Goodwill, and I've been listening to it in my car whenever I drive, and the amount of joy and pleasure it has brought to me has been immense. It has throwback appeal, it has somatic memories of being young appeal, and her voice is frankly INSANE with how good she is. A+++++++++++++++ two dollar purchase.
posted by a fiendish thingy at 10:26 AM on February 1 [9 favorites]


YouTube served me up the suggestion to hear Woods of Birnam's performance of Zu Asche Zu Staub.

Their album, Woods of Birnam, has been in rotation on CD in my car ever since.

I love Christian Friedl's voice and the various arrangements of the pieces I've found on YT.
posted by jaruwaan at 10:31 AM on February 1


I got back into Phish after about 20 years of not listening to them so I've been listening to a lot of Phish. I used to prefer their albums but now I prefer their more recent live stuff. I have trouble listening to their live stuff from the 1990s, which is when I was last into them. It was nice to come back to them and see how they've evolved and matured. I am the rare Phish fan who will not try to convince you that you should like them.

I'm actually not a big music guy. I like music but I don't really need it in my life. I've also never come across any music that made me emotional and I find it weird when there are AskMes that are like "I just broke up and need some music to help me cope" because such a thing is alien to me. I realize this probably means I'm dead inside, but I'm curious if anyone else is that way.

Also music-related, I'm building a bass guitar for someone in exchange for money. So I got that going for me, which is nice.
posted by bondcliff at 10:37 AM on February 1 [4 favorites]


Most of my listening these days is on headphones during my subway commute. Lots of things I’ve been turned onto (or re-encouraged to check out) here on Metafilter: Janelle Monae, CHVRCHES, Lizzo. I’ve also made extensive iTunes playlists for myself based on Metafilter suggestions: e.g., the original post and followup comments on this amazing Afrobeats post by filthy light thief; various workout/dance music requests like this one from Frowner.

Over the last few weeks I’ve been assembling a playlist I call Triumphant Morning Soundtrack. I picture myself in one of those long establishing shots for the opening credits of a 70s/80s action movie or thriller—like, a helicopter shot of LA that gets closer and closer to a busy freeway, and then close enough to identify a particular car and our hero on their morning commute just before Everything Changes and the action ensues—and imagine what song I’d want over the movie where that hero was me. It started with listening to Kosmischer Läufer’s Morgenröte (from yet another post here) while walking around a sunny corner and facing a difficult day that I suddenly felt sure I could get through gracefully. There’s no particular movie opening I’m thinking of—and I’m not even in a car, I’m walking through a quiet neighborhood to the subway!—but that’s what I’m after. Droning and walking-pace but still uplifting and loud and optimistic. Lots of Neu!, Can, Stereolab, Teenage Fanclub, and things that have come up in AskMe threads on motorik and workout music.
posted by miles per flower at 10:40 AM on February 1 [3 favorites]


Someone on MeFi Chat turned me on to The World/Inferno Friendship Society, specifically the album Red-Eyed Soul, which I'm digging. This was in return for my advocacy for Counting Crows' August and Everything After, which is so much better than even the better-than-you-remember "Mr. Jones" (and which they have finally recorded the title track of, 26 years later).

Also, AM Taxi finally came out with their second album, Shiver By Me, and while it's not as good as We Don't Stand a Chance, which I've played the digital grooves off, it's still good if you like pop-punk.
posted by Etrigan at 10:40 AM on February 1 [1 favorite]


I've recently rediscovered the cache of Israeli lo-fi indy bands I downloaded sometime in the early 2000s. Right now, the self-titled album by Tiny Creatures is my go-to when I need something comfortable on transit or during a break at work.
posted by The Great Big Mulp at 11:26 AM on February 1 [2 favorites]


This is where my music comes from:

Radio (the real thing, although there are not a lot of good stations in my area)
Streaming radio (two Logitech internet radios and one Grace)
The Roku box, which streams audio like above plus youtube video (mostly old Eurovision song contests) and the Metropolitan Opera's audio & video streams
CDs -- mostly pop/rock and classical
An old ipod, which has mostly pop/rock stuff and is used for travel
Records -- mostly classical

(I did finally get rid of the cassettes.)

Here are my favorite music audio streams, in no particular order:

Maine Public Classical
Radio 4 in the Netherlands
WSCS (disclaimer, I snuggle with the owner)
WHRB (specifically the Hillbilly at Harvard show on Saturday mornings -- Melismata, there are people in the Boston area who like country music!!
WQXR's Operavore stream
The Mighty KBC (although it is more fun to try to catch them on shortwave)
WABC Rewound Radio
WFMU's Ichiban stream
CKJM (french country music and some good fiddle music)
Radio Amalia (Portuguese fado)
WCVR (country music from Vermont, see disclaimer above)
Soma FM Underground 80s
ESC Radio (Eurovision songs)

Plus other things I forget to mention. I have amazon music on trial and am enjoying it except that I can't find a way through the Roku app to make it stop showing the damn lyrics.

When I had SiriusXM I listened to the 1940s channel a lot; I need to find a stream to replace that.

I also listen to a lot of old-time radio shows, but I suppose that doesn't really figure in a music post.

I am continuously amazed at how much music I have access to and that is the thing I like best about the internet.

In the car these days I'm playing this song by the Violent Femmes over and over and over.
posted by JanetLand at 11:29 AM on February 1 [5 favorites]


I am hugely devoted to a sort of music that is really hard to find, which is thoughtful Christian music that embraces ambiguity, doubt, loss, pain, mystery, and suffering and isn't all happy-clappy joy joy Jesus fixed all my problems cliches. Basically, I've missed Rich Mullins since he died in a car crash 22 years ago. (This song that he happened to capture on a crappy portable tape recorder just before his death is my perennial favorite.) Just last week, on the suggestion of an acquaintance, I checked out Andrew Peterson and the enormous Rich-shaped hole in my musical life is finally filled. The Rain Keeps Falling and The Silence of God are exactly what I need, but I love all of his stuff so far. And he'll be in Houston-ish in early April! Looking forward to being at that performance.
posted by Pater Aletheias at 11:29 AM on February 1 [6 favorites]


I listen to the radio when I'm in the car, which is a lot. I used to listen to NPR, but ever since 2016 it makes me too angry. If there were a classical station where I live, I'd listen to that, but there isn't. So I listen to this station called "Legends", which plays songs of the "Great American Songbook." I like it because they play a lot of great singers and the ads don't shout at you, and my son likes it because he's a jazz musician. I have noticed, though, that the Great American Songbook is just full of creepy stalker songs. "Baby, It's Cold Outside" is just the tip of the iceberg (ha.)
posted by Daily Alice at 11:33 AM on February 1


(Oh, and I think Peterson also sees himself in the same strain of music as Mullins. Here he is with a cover of Rich's Calling Out Your Name. I've been told he's done entire Mullins tribute concerts. Anyway, any fellow Rich Mullins people need to check out Peterson ASAP.)
posted by Pater Aletheias at 11:35 AM on February 1


I've been rotating between Foals, St. Paul and the Broken Bones, and Punch Brothers... I was able to see Punch Brothers on tour recently (one of my top 5 shows of all time and I've been to a *lot* of shows) and I'm super psyched to be seeing the other two in concert for the first time in the coming months...
posted by Jacob G at 11:35 AM on February 1 [4 favorites]


I was able to see Punch Brothers on tour recently (one of my top 5 shows of all time and I've been to a *lot* of shows)

I had the chance to see them when they came through town a couple of years ago, and it is very hard to overstate how good those guys are live. Like, pants-shittingly good.
posted by mandolin conspiracy at 11:55 AM on February 1 [2 favorites]


I mostly listen to jazz and soul, some rock and pop and blues and folk and... basically, anything except non-20C classical and hip hop.

I always listen on vinyl as buying and selling records is my profession. When not home, I do not listen to music at all--podcasts and audiobooks.

Some suggestions -- full albums, not tracks -- from


Electronic

Susumu Yokota - Grinning Cat
Casino Vs Japan - Whole Numbers Play the Basics

Jazz

Alice Coltrane - Ptah the el Daoud
Leon Thomas - Spirits Known and Unknown
Matana Roberts - Coin Coin

Blues

Junior Wells - Hoodoo Man Blues
John Lee Hooker - Serves You Right to Suffer

Instrumental / Ambient

The Tired Sounds of Stars of the Lid
James Blackshaw - the Cloud of Unknowing

Pop/Rock/Alternative

Merchandise - Children of Desire
Liars - They Threw Us...
Van Morrison - Veedon Fleece
posted by dobbs at 12:09 PM on February 1 [2 favorites]


Men are Hot

NSFW. Perfect bisexual summer jam.

Your Domme,
FH
posted by fluttering hellfire at 12:26 PM on February 1 [3 favorites]


I can't figure out if I'm one of those horrible Americans who listens primarily to British music that can never have the same meaning for me that it does for someone actually from the UK

I'm afraid I've already admitted that a long time ago.

Most recently, tho: "Younger," the first cut off In League With Dragons, the new Mountain Goats album, Spiritual Eternal—The Complete Warner Bros. Studio Recordings, the recent Alice Coltrane comp, and Remind Me Tomorrow, Sharon Van Etten's latest.
posted by octobersurprise at 1:30 PM on February 1


Hey, perfect timing! I just got a new pair of headphones yesterday that I'm very happy with. I'd had my last set for a good five years, but the wires were closing in on my throat with repeated repairs to the earpiece connections, and when it got to the point that I was leaning over a candle heating up a large nail to fix the solder, I thought they'd probably suffered enough.
posted by lucidium at 1:33 PM on February 1 [1 favorite]


"Push the trigger and I pull the thread,
I gotta take it on the other side
Take it on the other side
Take it on..."

and I'm wondering why we don't see more of this --

Papa, GVF grew up like 40 miles from me and I know folks who know the Kiszka's.
They rock and can't say much other then a strategy is in play to overcome that cover band thing but you sound like Robert Plant, things get difficult. (From what I heard, Plant loves em)
posted by clavdivs at 2:02 PM on February 1 [2 favorites]


Nowadays, I mostly listen to music on YouTube, and I've gotten pretty obsessed with Basque pop and folk-pop (When I say "pretty obsessed", I mean to point of trying to learn their language so I can understand the songs better.)

Anyway, current obsessions: Nøgen – Enarak, "The Swallows"
starts out:
I've closed my eyes, I've swallowed my tears.
I've closed my eyes, don't say I'm not going anywhere.
and later:
Ni leihoak hausten ez nago zure zain.
With windows breaking, I'm not waiting for you.
And Huntza – Zelatari, "Watching Out". (This is probably my favorite song off their new album.) Huntza's music is triki-pop, Basque accordion-driven folk-pop, a totally different genre from the above, but I like both.
posted by nangar at 2:03 PM on February 1 [2 favorites]


Where are all the classical MeFites, I know it's not just me.
I've been listening to some of the more obscure Dvorak symphonies, the 3rd and 5th, and adoring them. Also Alma Deutscher's concertos on YouTube, thanks to a post on the blue sometime back, thank you lungtaworld. Also bits of Janacek here and there, because "Jenufa" is amazing, and Beethoven's piano sonata #32 because the jazz passage in the second movement blows me away.
(When I go running, not often enough these days, it's Gershwin, bossa nova, Hamilton, Blossom Dearie, and Dreams Come True.)
posted by huimangm at 2:16 PM on February 1 [3 favorites]


My short-lived radio career involved a lot of music exposure in the late '70s. At my college radio station (KXLU, Loyola Los Angeles), I had the honor of doing the "Dr. Demento Soundalike" show (every college station in L.A. had one) because I had a small collection of comedy/novelty/justplainweird records. (I even met Dr. D and ended up lending him one record he DIDN'T have - it was one of my greatest honors).

When I worked as a sidekick/assistant to a "wacky morning guy", part of my duties was making sure he didn't play the same songs at the same time every day... the station was semi-conservative "Adult Contemporary", but my boss loved the the Talking Heads "Take Me to the River" and I had to seriously ration that. I also worked in the production studio editing together background music beds from the intros to hit songs (basically trying to repeat the same 30 seconds without obvious edits) and was most proud of what I did with Boz Scaggs' "Lowdown" and Gerry Rafferty's "Baker Street", mixing in parts of mid-song instrumental bridges. I ended up with a job in charge of a small automated radio station, but it had a pre-packaged Country music format and within a few months I learned to hate Country. There was one song I appreciated, and I resisted the temptation to program my last day there with repeated plays of Johnny Paycheck's "Take This Job and Shove It".

After that, I got regular office jobs but moonlighted writing comedy for disc jockeys, and for a brief time I was doing stuff with KROQ when it got its first big 'buzz' for playing 'New Wave' in the early '80s. I got a kick out of the recent Soft Cell FPP (its format played "Sex Dwarf" more than "Tainted Love"). But after that, I lost interest in the current music scene and went back to mostly Demento (and was impressed to learn that Weird Al Yankovic was doing the same kind of show at his college station that I did at mine).

When it was easier (and sometimes legal) to get free-or-very-cheap mp3s, I half-filled a 3TB side disc drive with mostly 60s/70s/80s music until the disc malfunctioned and I haven't recovered it all yet. But when I discovered the non-gaming channels on twitch.tv (beginning with the live drawing sessions of webcomic artists I like and extending to marathons of Old Doctor Who and MST3K), I found some listenable music channels, my favorite being the one operated by Monstercat, a modern "record label" specializing in techno, with multiple remixes of everything that was a semi-hit. But my favorite of its myriad acts is Pegboard Nerds, a bi-national Scandawhovian duo who have the most comfortable grasp of pop musical hooks of any techno act since Daft Punk Prime. And they've made a cover version of one of the oldest novelty records in my old collecton... Purple People Eater. Way to win over an old Dementoid. Your smileage may vary.
posted by oneswellfoop at 2:26 PM on February 1 [6 favorites]


Car - commute - audiobooks

Listening to Manhattan Beach by Jennifer Egan now, before that it was Tara Westover’s wild memoir Educated.
posted by chavenet at 2:26 PM on February 1 [1 favorite]


I've been very into The O'Mys lately. My favorite songs are Starship and Cough Drop. They're so good, and also adorable young kids. I've seen them live a handful of times, and invariably have ended up next to one of their friends/family and ended up saying hi and oh hey, yeah, I was at your show last month and also met you guys then. I feel like Mel in Flight of the Conchords, hahaha.

Other than that, Curtis Mayfield's Move On Up is my soundtrack for getting ready in the morning. Those horns, and those snappy drums are so energizing!
posted by Fig at 3:06 PM on February 1 [2 favorites]


Blippi songs about vehicles.
On repeat.
Because I have a toddler.
posted by sciencegeek at 3:07 PM on February 1 [2 favorites]


Stravinsky's Firebird, reminds me of dinosaurs. I got stuck watching Gergiev direct the london Sympbony Orchestra, and the Vienna Philharmonic, Scherezade. I always go back to The Airplane, to Joni, to Led Zepplin, forward some to Beck, Calexico. Then Robin Trower's Bridge of Sighs. Anna Netrebko and Elina Garanca Flower Duet, various things, Elbow, if you love mournful or anthemic Irish men...Calexico, The Shins, I listened to Achtung Baby, just yesterday!
posted by Oyéah at 4:00 PM on February 1 [2 favorites]


I've been streaming a lot of KEXP, which has introduced me to Idles and "Danny Nedelko" and "Samaritans".

I tend to use spotify for binges, the latest was female-fronted metal. Probably time to move on.
posted by GenderNullPointerException at 4:01 PM on February 1


In my continuing quest to find music that sounds like Noname I stumbled upon Junglepussy, which isn't quite the same, but I enjoyed enough to listen to while writing today, and also the new Girlpool album, What Chaos Is Imaginary, which Spotify helpfully alerted me to. These days almost all my music listening is through Spotify, except for a lovely radio show on YLE, the Finnish public broadcaster, called Muistojen bulevardi (Boulevard of Memories), which mostly plays popular music from the 1920-1960 (though lately they've been venturing into later decades, with mixed results). It's on every weekday morning between 9 and 10, which means it's just started when I come home from taking my son to kindergarten, which makes for a lovely way to start a working day.
posted by Kattullus at 4:03 PM on February 1


Sometimes I shame myself for not listening to enough music, but then I remember -

That I usher at a local venue and try to book musical performances once a month - Mozart and Ravel in January, a Beatles cover show in February.

That my son is a graduate student at a music conservatory (bass trombone REPRESENT!), where the last show was Pictures at an Exhibition and a glorious performance of Vaughan Williams Fantasia on a Theme by Thomas Tallis (no trombone in that, sadly).

That my husband plays guitar and sings, my son's girlfriend plays cello, sings, and is learning guitar, my daughter has been in barbershop choruses, and I studied piano for twelve years.

That every couple of weeks we'll do living room karaoke, calling up karaoke versions of tunes on youtube and passing the microphone around the room.

That I sing alto in two different choruses with weekly rehearsals, currently preparing the Faure Requiem and "All of Us" from Considering Matthew Shepard in the big chorale, plus various show tunes and little choral numbers in the community chorus.

It feels weirdly artificial to say "I am a musician". It's not my job and never will be. But my life is saturated with and enriched by music at every turn. I must see forty or more performances every year including the dozen or so that I'm actually participating in. I consider music in all its forms the pinnacle of human achievement.

(Although I'll admit I enjoy my son's concerts at the conservatory much more than I did those first concerts sitting on folding chairs in the grade school multi-purpose room. Oy!)
posted by rekrap at 4:52 PM on February 1 [6 favorites]


I have become an old person who has no idea what is going on in music anymore. There's a lot of music in the house because my husband is a musician, and our kid is taking lessons (ukulele), but a lot of it is folk and traditional with a smattering of the more folky end of classic rock (kid loooves Neil Young). I think the most recent new music I really got into has been Johnny Flynn via his music for Detectorists. And lately I've kind of leaned in to my enjoyment of the countertenor voice. We use the YouTube/Chromecast combo a lot for music when we're at home, and my husband puts a real grab bag on. Conservatory student performances of minimalism, old jazz footage, just whatever strikes his fancy. He's got such an exhaustive and varied taste and knowledge that I usually just enjoy whatever he picks to put on. Which makes me sound really passive and like music isn't important to me, which isn't the case. I just am married to someone way more motivated to make interesting selections and who has many tastes that overlap with my own.
posted by soren_lorensen at 5:17 PM on February 1 [1 favorite]


I ignored Mefi's advice and got wireless headphones and I love em. I have an ipod since I am uncool and have too much music to put on my phone. Lately I have been listening to Julien Baker and reliving my tortured teen years. She's so good!
posted by ferret branca at 5:32 PM on February 1


(Also a lot of Philip Glass's Solo Piano, if that counts, huimangm!)
posted by ferret branca at 5:34 PM on February 1 [2 favorites]


I rewatched Saving Mr. Banks the other day, so I've been bingeing on movie soundtracks by the Sherman brothers. Mary Poppins, Chitty Chitty Bang Bang, The Jungle Book, Charlotte's Web, The Sword in the Stone... it's been a belty, blubbery week at Stately Underpants Manor.
posted by The Underpants Monster at 5:44 PM on February 1


soren_lorensen: I think the most recent new music I really got into has been Johnny Flynn via his music for Detectorists.

I binged the show in the summer because I was able to check out all of the DVDs from my local public library, old-school style, and the show is fantastic. The music does really grab you in this sort of low-key way.
posted by mandolin conspiracy at 5:49 PM on February 1


Ooh, I've also been down a YouTube rabbit hole of countertenor videos.
posted by twoplussix at 5:50 PM on February 1 [1 favorite]


I just discovered Janelle Monae's "Dirty Computer" a week ago, so...yeah. One for the ages.
posted by rhizome at 5:52 PM on February 1 [4 favorites]


My #1 mid-2000s power-pop boy crush has self-released a new album and I am over the moon about it. What can I say? A warm, burred tenor singing songs about love over hooky-as-hell guitar licks? David Mead, I'm so glad you exist.

Also in heavy rotation in these last few days of polar vortex has been the Seattle Symphony's recording of John Luther Adam's Become Ocean.
posted by minervous at 5:54 PM on February 1


Two more, both Taylors.

Taylor 1 is Taylor Bennett, who is Chance the Rapper's little brother and just as talented (..if not more so) .. I like this song, Rock n Roll in particular.

Taylor 2 is Taylor Swift; I watched the Reputation tour vid on Netflix and have been playing songs from that album a lot.
posted by Fig at 5:54 PM on February 1


I don't stream anything, it's just never really worked for me aside from a brief Pandora phase years ago. My tastes are wide, but somehow just don't line up with anything I found, and there's so much easily available why listen to things I don't like?

I have many, many, thousands of legal MP3's, probably half of which I haven't really heard, thousands of CD's and hundreds of LP's. I will never listen to everything I already own.

I am my own radio station featuring a lot of music I don't know, but will probably like.
posted by bongo_x at 5:55 PM on February 1 [1 favorite]


currently preparing the Faure Requiem

OMG the Fauré Requiem.

The first time I was in rehearsal for that, the L.A. riots broke out. The second time, 9/11 happened. I'll never forget singing "ne cadant in obscurum" (that they fall not into darkness) over and over on a day when all anyone was talking about was the hope of still finding people alive in the rubble. Gah.

And the director told us about the first time she performed it, and the (college-age) soloist who sang the Libera Me (Deliver me from eternal death) was killed in an accident weeks later.

But it's so beautiful I'd jump at the chance to sing it again.
posted by The Underpants Monster at 6:01 PM on February 1 [7 favorites]


I have a strange tale. I was a great music lover all the way up until I got married (at age 22, I know) and then was not. It was just too emotionally affecting for me to listen to most of the time, and also I love silence and would quickly tire of the sound and want to turn it off, almost like a sensory processing problem or something. Or at least that's what I thought was going on.

Then, last summer, my marriage ended. And suddenly I was a music lover again. Like, a lot. I was given a Spotify subscription and a bluetooth speaker and now I just can't get enough, old and new alike. It's so strange.

Anyway. I'm enjoying this thread.
posted by HotToddy at 6:04 PM on February 1 [12 favorites]


There is entirely too much to say about music. I grew up with classical (both parents, and my dad wrote a mass at the end of his life, what I have heard of it is gorgeous tremendous, but of course the whole thing has never been performed, because who's gonna do that? I have the mss.)

I recently found a very cool thing: mynoise.net which some of you may enjoy playing with.

Before I divorced Facebook, I found a lovely group called Saodaj'. They are from Reunion. Lots of high energy beauty, and their musicality is above reproach. Nothing sloppy, ever. I did buy their first CD when it was released.
posted by luaz at 6:12 PM on February 1 [6 favorites]


MyNoise is fantastic. I give them money.
Of course I just set up what I like and record it, because that's how I roll.
The cool thing about them though is that it doesn't really stream, it just downloads some files and loops them in your browser.
posted by bongo_x at 6:30 PM on February 1 [2 favorites]


I'm actually not a big music guy. I like music but I don't really need it in my life. (...) I realize this probably means I'm dead inside, but I'm curious if anyone else is that way.

I am also like this. I'm kind of a one-thing-at-a-time person and can't work with music playing in the background. I work from home, i.e. don't commute, so I don't listen to music regularly and really don't feel the need to. I like music well enough, and I'm actually quite versed in contemporary pop music both U.S. and Japanese because I translate music news on the regular (J to E and vice versa) but I'm not crazy in love with music at all.

My husband, on the other hand, needs music. From what I've observed over the years, he really needs it in the way he needs water and food to survive, and I can tell he's not feeling well when he stops listening to music on the regular. His iTunes library is all sorts of crazy from my point of view, he has so much music in his computer, I think he'll quite literally die if the hard drive where he keeps all of it breaks down. Plus he streams on top of that.

I think part of the reason why I don't listen to much music anymore is because my husband is like that... he's worked in the Japanese music industry for years and is also quite a music snob, so I kind of feel intimidated? inferior? I don't know... it's no big deal, really, but I don't have that kind of enthusiasm re music that he does.

I hope this isn't a downer in an otherwise fun thread. For what it's worth, I've been on a major Southern All Stars throwback kick recently for some reason. It's too bad they haven't made their catalog available online.
posted by misozaki at 6:34 PM on February 1 [2 favorites]


I guess I won't post a link to an entire 2.5-hour opera even though the actual recording I'm listening to is on youtube and is quite good. I'm still on La Gioconda, as I think I posted on some other thread. It's actually impossible to find a recording that is solidly cast for all let's say 4.5 main roles. (One of them is only main-ish.)

Here's the big melodramatic aria for them that like that kind of thing, or are curious.
posted by Smearcase at 6:55 PM on February 1 [1 favorite]


I've been a giant music nerd all my life, and it's intensifying and deepening as I get older. I have always had very visceral and highly emotionally charged responses to my favorite music: goosebumps, tears pouring down my face, shivers up my spine...you name it. I don't know what I'd do without it. There have even been times in my life when music was the only thing that made me want to go on living.

Since my college days I've mostly been into goth-industrial and dark ambient. I listen to dark ambient in connection with my meditation, yoga, and dance practices. It also facilitates my creative flow when I write. I recently did a cross-interview with another dark ambient music writer and told my "conversion story" about how I got into the genre. Now I write and publish a newsletter on the genre, so I get to interview and work with my favorite musicians directly. I love this work so much that sometimes I pinch myself to make sure I'm not dreaming. Writing AND dark ambient music? Two of my favorite things together? I could see myself doing this work happily for the rest of my days.

In the interview I linked above, I wrote:
"Few people outside our community know how effective dark ambient music can be as an aid to meditation and liminal journeys. I’ve long wished for an expanded subgenre of dark ambient called “monastic dark ambient,” as I love chants, chimes, choral voices, church bells, orchestral elements, and guided meditations set to dark drone music. Some of this already exists, but nowhere near enough to slake my near-unquenchable thirst for it.

"I’ve been called "the world’s biggest dark ambient fan," and while I doubt that’s technically accurate, anyone who knows me would probably agree it isn’t too far off. I can’t even imagine what my life would look like without dark ambient music.

"I once met someone at a social gathering who told me in earnest that he doesn’t listen to music. I was so taken aback that at first I didn’t believe him. No music at all? None? EVER? I confess that my next thought was: "If he’s serious about that, I doubt I’m ever going to be close friends with him."
posted by velvet winter at 7:02 PM on February 1 [2 favorites]


I mostly stopped learning about new music when I had small kids, but a few years ago (the kids having gotten old enough to give me a little breathing space) I started catching up on what I had missed. I found out about The National, Vampire Weekend, Andrew Bird, and Josh Ritter. One of my best recent discoveries was Rainbow Kitten Surprise. Cold Love is one of their songs I really like. The song most recently added to my New Good Music playlist was Dog by Charlie Parr.
posted by Redstart at 7:38 PM on February 1 [2 favorites]


I can't stop listening to Kabalevsky's 3rd Piano Sonata. It's frighteningly deft at wrenching me apart.
posted by missmary6 at 7:40 PM on February 1 [3 favorites]


I loved all kinds of music as a child and in my teens, and took piano lessons for 13 years, but for the better part of the last dozen years or so I’ve had a weird relationship with it. With the exception of certain songs I had known and loved since I was a kid, or unless I was having an unusually good day, most music would either annoy me to the point of anger, or otherwise would make me cry.

It’s gotten a bit better lately, but I still don’t really get good feelings from most music these days – just uncomfortable ones. I don’t want to totally lose touch with music, though, because that seems really sad, so I’ve been trying to randomly pick albums (or performers) listed in “1001 Albums You Must Hear Before You Die” to listen to to see if anything clicks. The last time that happened was with some songs from a Kinks compilation album that I listened to on a solo road trip on Manitoulin Island last summer.
posted by as_night_falls at 7:43 PM on February 1 [2 favorites]


I'm listening to a lot of Halsey, Taylor Swift, Ariana Grande, Lauren Ruth Ward, harunemuri, Grimes, Larkin Poe, the Regrettes.
Not much of an audio snob, don't really care too much about hardware in general, listen on my macbook's speakers, on some low end philips headphones or on my car through a cheapo bluetooth dongle. Spotify, mostly, some youtube videos.
I'm 48, a few years back I was feeling old and bummed out about 'music these days' and how I couldn't find anything that didn't sound like I'd already heard it a thousand times. Then, I got over myself and started looking for new stuff. One of the good things about being an old is that you don't care about the identity signalling associated with music, and can just float around listening to whatever you feel like.
It's a great time to love music.
posted by signal at 7:43 PM on February 1 [4 favorites]


Do you only listen to records? Are you a collector?

I pretty much only listen to records. Me and my girlfriend have a pretty nice jukebox for playing 45s and a pretty shitty record player for playing LPs. (Yes, I know that you can play 45s on a record player, but changing the 45 out after every song is a drag.) My girlfriend has a few CDs that she listens to thru our DVD player, but I think I've gotten rid of all my CDs by this point. I guess we're record collectors, but nothing we have is super valuable or anything- most of our stuff is probably worth a couple bucks or less each; I think the most valuable record we own is a 45 of Garbageman by the Cramps.
posted by 23skidoo at 7:47 PM on February 1 [4 favorites]


I keep trying different streaming stations but any one that I check out just serves me up stuff I already am familiar with or don’t care to keep listening to. That’s why I keep coming back to KEXP. Sure there’s stuff I know and love to hear again but there’s a steady supply of new music that’s just great. That’s true for all of their specialty shows too — world music, rock a billy, ambient, hip hop, and DIY punk.

Today I decided to mount and frame a bunch of band posters, show flyers, and set lists I’ve collected over the years to decorate my new house with. I made the frames myself while listening to KEXP. There’s Luna, Spiritualized, The Verve, Dengue Fever, Holly Go-Lightly, My Bloody Valentine, The Sonics, Galaxie 500, The Hold Steady, Sigur Ros, Bob Mould, The Old 97s, Man or Astroman, and a few of my own bands’ nicer flyers. I didn’t bother with any photocopied flyers which include Husker Du, Camper Van Beethoven, Primus, Green Day, The Mr. T Experience, Operation Ivy, Rancid, Janes Addiction, and Fishbone. Yes, I turned 20 in 1990.
posted by Slarty Bartfast at 7:59 PM on February 1 [7 favorites]


My taste in music shifts constantly, sometimes week-to-week or day-to-day. I've been listening to a lot of metal in the last couple weeks. I usually listen to a lot of doom metal, but these days I'm all about thrash metal and black metal. I'm dealing with a lot of shit, so I think fast and loud helps keep me energized, or something.

Bathory's self-titled first album (YouTube link) is rapidly becoming one of my favorite albums.

I'm also trying to find more grindcore and powerviolence bands like Mind Eraser (brutal YouTube link.)

I work at a record store, and I don't really buy records anymore unless it's stuff that's hard to find elsewhere. These days it's mostly obscure country 45s, which are cheap and fun to look for. If it's not some obscure thing, I usually just stream stuff on Apple Music. In an ideal world I'd buy all the music I want to hear, but I'm not made of money. Maybe someday.
posted by shapes that haunt the dusk at 8:21 PM on February 1 [2 favorites]


Oh dang, double link. Here's Mind Eraser, for those in need of face melting.
posted by shapes that haunt the dusk at 8:37 PM on February 1 [1 favorite]


velvet winter - That is fantastic. Opening a wormhole there for me.
posted by bongo_x at 8:45 PM on February 1 [1 favorite]


Well more than music; I find an aesthetic in gear. And yes, if I could; I would more likely have a $60,000 pair of speakers more than a $60,000 car.

Caveat: Gear and country of origin - Speakers; JM Lab / Focal 806s Cobalts; France. Stands: Sound Organisation; Great Britain. A Carver CT-17 preamp/tuner, and a Carver M-1.0t amp; both out of Japan. My Sony 46" flatscreen circa 2009 was made in Mexico. Speaker cable is Van Den Hul CS-122 out of The Netherlands.

The Rega, the cable, and the stands are from Whetstone Audio of Austin, TX. I enjoy the 'niceness' of crafted items; by no means are they art; yet by any definition; yes, having the human touch involved in the manufacture makes them art. Whetstone Audio itself is a one owner small business family man operation, and yeah. Good gear from good people is support of the arts.

All made over a decade ago; and all made in non-slave factories; all finally out of storage (had child = no time to do much not to mention the entire 'oh my god the speakers just fell' / omg factor avoidance), and all still working well; which to me is a testament that even in electronics; you can and do get what you pay for and research for.

Listening would be 80's Euro/MTV stuff - PSB, Human League, Depeche Mode, some metal-ish stuff such as earlier Black Sabbath and Judas Priest. Moving into the 90's; well; college was a time of being too broke to even listen to music; so yes that would be the forgotten decade that I seem to always enjoy hearing again.

With time; soon a Rega P-1 turntable (Great Britain again), and a Pro-Ject RPM 1.3 (Czechoslovakia. Red!) will hopefully be mounted to the wall (LOL, no little hands on my tonearms) before Spring.

HBO's The Wire, and some of the newer Sci-Fi adventure stuff rounds out the video audio (Marvel I loves you) listening items.
Much more lush than LOUD, and that suits me just fine.
posted by Afghan Stan at 8:51 PM on February 1 [1 favorite]


Pater Aletheias Basically, I've missed Rich Mullins since he died in a car crash 22 years ago.

Oh, man... Mullins was really great, but if I could live in a musical landscape of the same creativity and insight and attitude as Leslie Phillips' The Turning, I might have found a different path.
posted by hippybear at 9:01 PM on February 1


So, Guster has a new album out, Look Alive, which I'm digging. I'm seeing them in a couple of weeks and am praying my vinyl arrives in time for me to take it to get it autographed.

John Grant's new album still sits wrapped in plastic. I need to get that on the turntable at some point.

I drunkenly purchased Mellon Collie And The Infinite Sadness recently for some reason, but I'm not unhappy with my drunken self, as I have never owned this album before.

I'm still hooked on Carly Rae Jepson (she's Paula Abdul for now), and Janelle Monae continues and I'm surprisingly not that hooked on the trio of NIN EPs they put out. I should listen to them more, but they feel more like art projects than music to make fans wild. Not that there's anything wrong with that.

The Emily-half of Indigo Girls did a solo album not too long ago, Murmuration Nation, which I continue to go back to. And the Laurie Anderson / Kronos Quartet giant hurricane thing Landfall continues to be something I come back to.

The thing that I've been obsessed with, though, for the longest "obsessed about a new album" time for me at this stage of life, is Gabriel Kahane's album The Ambassador. It's easy to find, I've posted things about it (probably) (definitely)... Here's a performance of one of the tracks, about 11m long.
posted by hippybear at 9:17 PM on February 1 [3 favorites]


I'm listening to everything through the amazing slow downer app, now that it connects to spotify so that you can slow down or speed up any song without changing the pitch. Fela Kuti, Art Tatum and Flying Lotus/Kendrick Lamar at 40-50% reveal all sorts of delights, as does Low at 150%.
posted by umbú at 9:38 PM on February 1


BILLIE EILISH. 'Nuff said.
posted by Amor Bellator at 9:39 PM on February 1


shapes that haunt the dusk: Oh dang, double link. Here's Mind Eraser , for those in need of face melting.

Ok. You know how YouTube comments are generally and almost always hot garbage? My favourite thing about this is that the only comment for this is simply: "Lyrics?"
posted by mandolin conspiracy at 10:02 PM on February 1 [1 favorite]


velvet winter - That is fantastic. Opening a wormhole there for me.

Thanks for the kind words, bongo_x. You totally made my day with that! Few things make me happier than hearing that my newsletter opened a wormhole into appreciation of dark ambient music. For a fellow MeFite, no less.

If you find any albums among my recommendations that you particularly appreciate, feel free to MeMail me and let me know. I'll try to keep my music nerd glee at a dull roar. Or maybe I won't, and I'll just write about it in the next issue. Ha!

Tonight's music for me is Gryning/Utfärd by Ulf Söderberg while I work on upcoming issues.
posted by velvet winter at 10:05 PM on February 1


If you find any albums among my recommendations that you particularly appreciate, feel free to MeMail me and let me know make a quality FPP about that album. Contact me if you need help fleshing out the post.
posted by hippybear at 10:07 PM on February 1 [2 favorites]


EVERY MUSIC POST ON THE FRONT PAGE IS A GALLON OF RELIEF DILUTING THE POOL OF OUTRAGE AND POLITICS.
posted by hippybear at 10:08 PM on February 1 [6 favorites]


(unless it's a Taylor Swift post, in which case you're standing at a bonfire throwing full cans of lighter fluid on it)
posted by hippybear at 10:09 PM on February 1


like seriously I wanted to make a TS post a while back and the mod team contacted me and they were all "yeah, like, we really don't want you to make this post" and I was all "what? it's just a post about a song and a video" and they let me make my post and it turned into not just a shitshow but an entire season of shitshows. And not just a "limited series". It was a full-on Network Television season of a shitshow.

Moral of the story: You may want to post that thing about Taylor... but listen to the mods. Don't. It's best for both you and them. Mostly them, the mods.

posted by hippybear at 10:18 PM on February 1 [3 favorites]


...make a quality FPP about that album.

I'd love to see FPPs about dark ambient music. I came very close to making one about Ulf Söderberg/Sephiroth myself, as I have deep knowledge of his musical career and his work richly deserves to be more widely known. But because my newsletter has a paid tier featuring an interview with him, I don't think it would be allowed on the blue. Not from me, at least.

But for what it's worth, I'm planning to post about my newsletter on MeFi Projects sometime this year, so eventually there'll be a wealth of material there for FPPs about it if other people want to make 'em.
posted by velvet winter at 10:37 PM on February 1 [1 favorite]


But for what it's worth, I'm planning to post about my newsletter on MeFi Projects sometime this year

Look, we both know how this goes. Either you do this within the next 48 hours while it's still fresh in your mind or you'll forget forever.

So just make the Projects post, like, over the weekend. And then it'll be done and it will have its own life and you can move on.
posted by hippybear at 10:41 PM on February 1 [1 favorite]


...just make the Projects post, like, over the weekend.

But it's still early days for the newsletter, and I'm working on some super exciting interviews with the Cryo Chamber label and Desiderii Marginis that I've been planning to publish before I announce the newsletter on Projects!

OK, OK, I'll at least consider it...
posted by velvet winter at 10:54 PM on February 1 [1 favorite]


I listen to BBC Radio 1 in the mornings, and then Spotify allllll day and night.

Also loving Billie Eilish, Janelle Monae, Lizzo, Hayley Kiyoko, Noname, Pink Sweat$, Anderson.Paak, Kehlani, Jessie Reyez...

And discovered from Music, really enjoying Bluebird Wine’s song Nothing But the Rain, which is on Spotify!

Thanks for the Taylor Bennett recommendation Fig!
posted by ellieBOA at 10:58 PM on February 1 [1 favorite]


My new year's resolution was to stick with a project for at least three months, so I decided to review all of the Billboard #1 hits of the 1990s and post it on a blog. While I was researching about "Vogue" by Madonna, I listened to a lot of cool '80s house music as well. I haven't reviewed it yet, but my favorite song I've heard so far is "Vision of Love" by Mariah Carey. The way she controls the dramatic arc of the song with melisma puts everyone else to shame.
posted by J.K. Seazer at 11:36 PM on February 1 [2 favorites]


I get most of my music the time-honoured ways: from the radio, from CDs and LPs; and supplement that via YouTube, bandcamp and elsewhere on-line. Recent listening has heavily featured '50s/'60s singers like Dakota Staton and Ethel Ennis; while I've also been revisiting Kevin Ayers and Scott Walker. On the classical front I continue to get a kick out of Bohuslav Martinů's music. And the latest stuff to turn my head is the new EP from Kamaal Williams.
posted by misteraitch at 12:09 AM on February 2 [1 favorite]


I've been listening to my records now that I have my turntable set up. I was doing some old favs, like Duran Duran, Rio. Then I decided I should play some of the ones I picked up but never broke out of the plastic. So I put on Queen's Jazz. That was amazing!! What a stellar album!!

But today has been all about the Kate Bush, based on the FPP.
posted by greermahoney at 12:32 AM on February 2 [3 favorites]


What I was listening to yesterday:

Paddy McAloon's 2003 album I Trawl the Megahertz has just been rereleased as a Prefab Sprout record. There is one sung piece on it, and the rest is orchestral with occasional spoken word, such as the twenty-minute long title track. Strange and beautiful and unlike anything else at the time (though I think the world has caught up with it in the last fifteen years). Here it is on Spotify, if you do Spotify.

The Egyptian composer and musician Maurice Louca, who formed Lekhfa with Maryam Saleh and Tamer Abu Ghazeleh, has just released another album of instrumental music, Elephantine.

Also a bunch of Gurdjieff/de Hartmann piano music.
posted by Grangousier at 3:15 AM on February 2 [1 favorite]


bongo_x I give MyNoise money too, a little subscription, because what a lovely thing it is! I feel like a babe in the woods there, though, because I don't have any of the tech skills with sound at all, just turn something on and let it play, but MyNoise is excellent for that.

as_night_falls, I also took piano lessons for over ten years. And I also at times have zero interest in music. I have gone years just preferring to listen to the sounds around me, as it is a kind of communication from life I have not wanted to complicate with something that will drown it out. And then, when I run into music that touches just the right spot, I fall in love all over again.
posted by luaz at 4:21 AM on February 2 [1 favorite]


I haven't reviewed it yet, but my favorite song I've heard so far is "Vision of Love" yt by Mariah Carey. The way she controls the dramatic arc of the song with melisma puts everyone else to shame.

This one is on my cd that I mentioned above, and it has reintroduced me to the existential question of my youth-- the narrative arc of the song is a description of the vision of wonderful love, and then the final line is "I had a vision of love/ And it was all that you've given to me/ I had a vision of love/ And it was all that you turned out to be!"

Does that mean "congrats, you lived up to my impossible expectations," or "you turned out to be only a Vision that could never exist in real life and gave me impossible expectations" or "I dreamed you would love me unconditionally and you failed in every way to live up to my expectations, the only thing you ever gave me was the hope that you could be better?" I think the song supports all interpretations but I switch back and forth on which one I think is the "true" meaning every time I listen to it. (Full disclosure: as a child listening to it, I was convinced the line was A SICK BURN on a gross man. I was apparently very cynical as a kid.)

Anyway, I highly recommend listening to the song 34-55 times in a row to come up with your own theories.
posted by a fiendish thingy at 5:39 AM on February 2 [5 favorites]


This is one of those MeFi posts where I feel like I have so much to say that I can't even start. I love music so much. And in the last few years, I've been loving it more than ever--having intense, physical reactions to it because it seems so meaningful and purely good. I'll just say that right now, I can't stop listening to this song. It's not even a style that I usually like, but the electronic part in the chorus is awesome, and I really, really feel what it is saying. Completely. I wish I could do better.

TOKiMONSTA: I Wish I Could feat Selah Sue
posted by heatvision at 6:13 AM on February 2


I will *always* buy music from artists I like - I am a huge believer in showing your support with cash. I recognize that not everyone is able to do this, but I think it’s important if you have the means.
posted by ersatzkat at 6:25 AM on February 2 [6 favorites]


Someone on MeFi Chat turned me on to The World/Inferno Friendship Society,

Oh hai, I was in that band in the very earliest of days, which makes me a very fucking old I think. That was 1996, when a bunch of different punk and punk-adjacent musicians started exploring Rock Based On Something Other Than Blues Rock and inadvertently made a bunch of musical bastard godchildren.

Among many many more, I'm thinking of things like Firewater, Gogol Bordello, World/Inferno, the beginning of Leftover Crack turning into whatever you'd categorize them as, etc
posted by twoplussix at 6:59 AM on February 2 [3 favorites]


I've been less and less in touch with new music lately. But for the past few years I've been doing the friends-to-USELESS-GAY-PINING-to-lovers thing with a great human, and the friends-to-IUNNO-to-close-metamours thing with their partner, and both are huge music nerds with pretty compatible tastes. And so most of the new stuff I listen to comes from their collections, which is an interesting role reversal: before, in new relationships, I was always the one who was all "I made you a mix tape!" and "You need to listen to _____!" and now I get to be the one receiving the recommendations. (It's fun! Also it makes me feel so uncool!)

I think I introduced them to tune-yards and not vice versa, but it might have been a simultaneous independent discovery thing. They introduced me to Haim a while ago, and Xenia Rubinos, and a bunch of weird glitch-pop stuff, and a 90s alt band called Drill, and most recently Lizzo.

Anyway, yeah, I am currently enjoying the weird charming high school nostalgia of falling simultaneously for a person, their social circle, and their social circle's taste in music, and it's surreal and pretty fun.
posted by nebulawindphone at 7:38 AM on February 2 [1 favorite]


In the last week and a half, juliaem and I drove 3000+ miles from Brooklyn to New Orleans to Pittsburgh and back to Brooklyn. We made ourselves a playlist for the drive of complete albums that we love; records that one or both of us enjoy end-to-end with no skippable songs. We didn't get through the whole list, but we did listen to:
RYAN ADAMS, Heartbreaker
ADELE, 21
TORI AMOS, Scarlet's Walk
FIONA APPLE, The Idler Wheel...
BEATLES, Abbey Road
BECK, Odelay
BELLE & SEBASTIAN, The Boy With the Arab Strap
BEN FOLDS FIVE, Ben Folds Five and Whatever and Ever, Amen
ANDREW BIRD, The Mysterious Production of Eggs
JEFF BUCKLEY, Grace
BUILT TO SPILL, Keep It Like a Secret
BON IVER, For Emma Forever Ago
CAKE, Fashion Nugget
MANU CHAO, Proxima Estacion: Esperanza
ELVIS COSTELLO, Spike
COUNTING CROWS, August and Everything After
DEATH CAB FOR CUTIE, The Photo Album
DECEMBERISTS, The Crane Wife and The Hazards of Love
FLEETWOOD MAC, Rumours
ARETHA FRANKLIN, I Never Loved a Man the Way I Love You
JIMI HENDRIX, Are You Experienced
LAURYN HILL, The Miseducation of Lauryn Hill
HURRAY FOR THE RIFF RAFF, Look Out Mama
THE HOLD STEADY, Separation Sunday
INDIGO GIRLS, Rites of Passage
RAY LAMONTAGNE, Trouble
TED LEO & the PHARMACISTS, Tyranny of Distance
LUCIUS, Wildewoman
ERIN McKEOWN, Distillation
JONI MITCHELL, Court and Spark
ALANIS MORRISETTE, Jagged Little Pill
MODEST MOUSE, The Moon and Antarctica
VAN MORRISON, Moondance
THE NATIONAL, Trouble Will Find Me
NEUTRAL MILK HOTEL, In the Aeroplane Over the Sea
THE NEW PORNOGRAPHERS, Together and Challengers
NIRVANA, Nevermind
JOAN OSBORNE, Relish
THE POSTAL SERVICE, Give Up
posted by D.Billy at 7:46 AM on February 2 [12 favorites]




Double J had the Hottest 100 from 1998 on last weekend, so I've been listening to mixed CDs from the late 90s (Indie 2000 vol 4 and vol 5 ).
For things a bit more recent, Reignwolf just released a new single and are finally releasing their first album next month. I saw them a few months ago and they were amazing. Looking forward to seeing them again in a smaller venue next month.
posted by Kris10_b at 11:40 AM on February 2


We made ourselves a playlist for the drive of complete albums that we love; records that one or both of us enjoy end-to-end with no skippable songs.

Peter Gabriel, So (not all of the songs on it are good songs if they just pop up on Shuffle, but the album as a single piece is perfect)
posted by Etrigan at 1:18 PM on February 2 [1 favorite]


So many albums are perfect as a single piece. Not as many newer releases (sadly) but those do still happen.

I love me a good album. The one I've played until the laser in the CD burned through the plastic (didn't really happen) is Boingo - Boingo.

It's not really an Oingo Boingo album. It's Elfman wanting to make a rock album using what he learned during his years doing Burton film scores. It's so so very very perfect.
posted by hippybear at 1:42 PM on February 2 [1 favorite]


There are some nights when the world is a little too much with me and I need to sort of hunker down and ground myself; clean something in the house and put it to rights, cook a simple but fantastic meal from scratch, and read with a glass of wine.

That's when Astral Weeks comes out too. It hits that exact "sometimes I wish I was one of those ex-hippies who lives in a small farm in the Hudson Valley" itch.
posted by EmpressCallipygos at 3:50 PM on February 2 [8 favorites]


On my drive back and forth to work I rotate between SiriusXMU, Lithium, and First Wave. I wish my radio was able to get the Indie 1.0 channel, but it's too high up on the sat radio dial.

What I listen to at work depends on my mood and the energy level I need for whatever I'm working on. I'm a technical writer so I'm either reading long, boring product requirements or business requirements, working backwards through the developer comments in our project management system to find out what a new feature is actually supposed to do (versus what it actually does), and every now and then actually putting words on a page.

Lately I've been listening to a lot of anime soundtracks. Some are very calm and peaceful, some a bit more energetic. A few examples...

- Liz to Aoi Tori (Liz and the Blue Bird): girls, dance, staircase (CDJapan link). This is the track that opens the movie - wind, glass, bluebird.

- Hibike! Euphonium: season 1, season 2 (CDJapan links). A clip from the anime - Station Concert.

Liz and the Blue Bird and Hibike! Euphonium are high school band geek drama, so the soundtracks are mostly brass band music. The soundtrack to Liz is a bit more experimental. Liz and the Blue Bird is set just after season 2 of Hibike.

- Non Non Biyori: season 1, season 2 (CDJapan links)

Non Non Biyori is girls hijinks in a small village in rural Japan, so the music is more pastoral and laid-back. Non Non Biyori is in my top 5 list for favorite anime. These scenes are great examples of how the soundtrack adds to the anime - Kaede teaches Renge to ride a bike, Life is salty.

- Flying Witch: season 1 (CDJapan link)

Flying Witch also takes place in the countryside and has a calm and peaceful soundtrack. This is a good example - testing out a broom.

- Aria: season 1, season 2, season 3 (CDJapan links).

Aria is my absolute favorite manga series and probably my favorite anime series. The soundtrack is generally very peaceful and calming. This is the ED (show ending clip) for the third season, and this is the main theme music for season one (Gondola no Yume).

Yuru Yuri: original soundtrack (used for all three seasons) (CDJapan link, but you'll have to sail the seven seas to find it).

Yuru Yuri (Happy Go Lilly) is middle school girls being lazy and getting up to mischief. The soundtrack is bouncy and fun and what I need when I'm on page 20, paragraph 5, subsection 3 of a business requirements document. The season 2 opening track (OP) is a good example.
posted by ralan at 4:38 PM on February 2 [1 favorite]


I will *always* buy music from artists I like - I am a huge believer in showing your support with cash. I recognize that not everyone is able to do this, but I think it’s important if you have the means.

Agreed completely. I'm writing an article for my newsletter about the heavy reliance on unpaid and unrecognized labor in underground music scenes, and one thing I address is the way seemingly innocuous phrases like "passion project" or "labor of love" serve to conceal (or at least divert attention from) the financial exploitation of arts labor.

The more I've learned about structural exploitation of artistic labor, in fact, the more horrified I become, and the more strongly I feel about paying artists fairly for their work. I'm very low-income myself, but I have paid for every single album on my Bandcamp fan profile except the few that were gifts. And I don't use Spotify at all, because the artists get a mere pittance through that platform.
posted by velvet winter at 5:26 PM on February 2 [2 favorites]


For a while I've been watching live shows on YouTube while working on projects, because there are awesome concerts to explore and it's not something I have to pay attention to visually, but whenever I look up it's interesting enough to keep me occupied for a while.

So when I wanted to spend a few weeks going through all the top lists from 2018, I found myself in need of good visual chaff. I started off with narrowboat tours of canals in England to Adrianne Lenker's new album, spent the entire Panama Canal enjoying Hayley Heyndericks' I Need To Start A Garden and Nils Frahm's new one, then moved on to nordic train journeys with DeVotchka and the Arctic Monkeys.

Of course, if I'm out in the garage working, it's always my 50-hour retrospective of the best and cheesiest music of the 40s through 70s, on shuffle play, with frequent dance breaks. It's designed to play like AM radio in a fever dream. Current faves are The Turbans with Sister Sookey, and all the versions of I'll Never Fall In Love Again that I dumped in there because phooey.

Live shows:
The Decemberists - Full concert (4/7/18 at Palace Theatre in Saint Paul, MN)

Andy Shauf | Live at Massey Hall - Nov 23, 2017

boygenius @ Brooklyn Steel November 7th 2018

Songs:

Adrianne Lenker - Symbol

Haley Heynderickx - Oom Sha La La

Arctic Monkeys - Tranquility Base Hotel And Casino

DeVotchka - Empty Vessels

The Turbans - Sister Sookie

Dionne Warwick - I'll Never Fall In Love Again
posted by MrVisible at 9:25 PM on February 2 [3 favorites]


I still buy all my music on CD or via the iTunes Store. Not a fan of streaming services. Things I have been getting into or re-visiting heavily:

Steven Wilson’s To The Bone (saw the tour in SA a few weeks ago- great band)
Los Lobos, The Neighborhood. Gotten to where I like it better than Kiko these days.
Last night, I put on Jellyfish’s Bellybutton & man, that first song The Man I Used to Be - wow. Grade A++ headphone material.
The Steven Wilson re-mix Of Close to the Edge.

The new remixes of both Sgt. Pepper & The White album are impressive, especially the clarity of the drums on Sgt. Pepper. Ready to fight the Ringo haters all over again.

New-to-me stuff that’s moving up the charts: Drive-by Truckers, The Dirty South
The Mommyheads Delicate Friction & Soundtrack to the End of the World
Thomas Dolby, A Map of the Floating City.

I do most of my listening either on my earbuds at bedtime or in the car.
posted by Devils Rancher at 10:44 PM on February 2 [3 favorites]


JOAN OSBORNE, Relish

Jesus Christ, YES. This is a mostly forgotten masterpiece. St. Theresa, Spider Web, Pensacola, all of it, just masterful work.
posted by Devils Rancher at 10:52 PM on February 2 [1 favorite]


I just tried to buy a an MP3 (of Kate Bush, duh) to put on my phone in order to take advantage of a music-learning app so I could put the song into a more human key. Didn't get that far
I learned it's now really hard to get access to your downloaded MP3's on mobile without being forced to just listen to them in Google Play or iTunes.
posted by twoplussix at 10:54 PM on February 2




Over the past week or two:

Sparks' No. 1 in Heaven is very good, especially "La Dolce Vita"

The devastating, evocative "House Show, Late December" by Fred Thomas

Hand Habits - "Placeholder"

Forgotten 90's grunge band Sponge just released something called Demoed in Detroit - 1997-98 that appears to be a full album that was demoed, then shelved. It would've been a follow-up to Wax Ecstatic. Listened on a lark on Spotify, and to my ears it's quite good. They always struck me as a cut above other bands they were lumped in with.
posted by naju at 11:33 PM on February 2 [3 favorites]


luaz and bongo_x, I want to thank you for mentioning mynoise.net in this thread. I had never heard of it before this thread, and I'm impressed. I spent an enjoyable evening reading the owner's blog and experimenting with the noises and sliders. Now I'm totally hooked on those eerie soundscape generators - particularly Black Hole, Ominous, and Oblivion. It's like my own personal endless dark ambient soundwash, and I can boost the sub-bass until I feel it in my bones, which is exactly how I like it. Awesome! I am so grateful for my subwoofer today.

Also, hippybear? Here's my Projects post. Happy listening, and thanks for the nudge.
posted by velvet winter at 11:01 AM on February 3 [2 favorites]


I have been listening non-stop to the newest Weakened Friends album, and cannot recommend it highly enough. It's got a great '90s grungy-rock feel to it, only much, much better. Everyone should go get it and listen to it right now.

(I listen via my phone -- I either connect it to a Bluetooth speaker in my house, or I connect it to a Bluetooth doohickey that connects it to my car's radio.)
posted by sarcasticah at 12:40 PM on February 3


Gabriel Kahane The Ambassador, this was so nice, hippybear.
posted by Oyéah at 3:27 PM on February 3


Bono does Ian McShane acrobatics at San Jose, takes some rambling discourse to get underway.
posted by Oyéah at 12:56 PM on February 4


I am stoked for the new Masked Intruder Album.

Also, the more I listen to A Vulture Wake the more I like them. That is the bamd you slept on in 2018.
posted by East14thTaco at 1:40 PM on February 4


I tend to play the same albums over and over again until I move onto the next one. Over the Christmas holidays it was the new Muse album and now it is a playlist of 3 albums: Nation of Two by Vance Joy, More or Less by Dan Mangan, and Arranging Time by Pete Yorn. The common thread for the 3 is that they're all albums that I can plausibly sing along with and that I can listen to without worry at home (small kids). I can sing along with some of the Muse but Matt Bellamy's range is just a bit wider than mine. I'm actually looking for something new. I gave the new Weezer album a try but it didn't stick.

When I'm at home I listen on my stereo system that I bought with Sony credit card points. Its nothing special but I definitely wouldn't have sprung for something even that nice if I didn't have points to burn. I've got a set of wired over-ear headphones (also purchased with points) for when I'm on the go which I plug into a bluetooth headphone amp. The setup is less convenient than true wireless headphones but I don't trust a bluetooth anything to last as long as a decent pair of wired headphones so at least this way I can swap amps when this one dies.
posted by any portmanteau in a storm at 6:31 PM on February 4


I love classical and movie music, and am most comfortable with the romantics, anything from Beethoven on, well into the 20th century. Over the last couple of years I've fallen in love with Two Steps From Hell, epic/trailer music producers who do big orchestra and choirs in small bites, which pleases me, as well as smaller stuff with more of a pop feeling.

But I also like some pop and rock, almost entirely female voices. I adore Gaga and recently discovered Sia, and rediscovered Donna Summer, and love Taylor Swift and Melissa Etheridge among too many others to name (yes, I know some of these are older, but so am I).

I don't stream anything. It's all in iTunes (with multiple backups) and on my phone or tablet. I avoid radio except for Seattle's excellent KING-FM, a user-supported classical music station. And I love my Sony wireless noise cancelling headphones, even though so many people think I shouldn't.
posted by lhauser at 6:46 PM on February 4


Hey, check out this dope ass old dub track by the Revolutionaries that The Orb pinched to make their classic "Towers of Dub".
posted by Burhanistan at 7:12 PM on February 4 [2 favorites]


I've eased up on the music for the moment. Even so* I've got the fairly-mainstream Korn dance club classic Twisted Transistor stuck in my head at the moment. Also to a lesser degree, Nirvana's don't-get-caught-singing-this-out-loud-at-work mv. (I definitely don't claim any hipster powers as most of what tickles my fancy in any time/genre tends to be entry-level or one bump down, but Lord, when I love a tune I bloody love it!)

*thoughts arrive like butterflies
posted by I'm always feeling, Blue at 10:31 PM on February 4


I've been falling back on old favorites lately, mostly music that reminds me of spring because it's SIXTY DEGREES where I live. Things like The Big Shot Chronicles by Game Theory and This Time by Anna Domino, the latter of whom sounds like Carly Rae Jepsen's weird aunt.

Since I'm at an age where people just listen to the music of their youth and bemoan the state of current music, I've been trying to push myself out of my comfort zone. I've listened to Pet Town by Eerie Wanda (imagine K Records gone goth); Headspace by local band Mint Green (jangly post-pop-punk); and the new Girlpool, which hits my 1980s college rock sweet spot. I also re-discovered Lizzy Mercier Descloux, which has been a sweet rediscovery.
posted by pxe2000 at 9:44 AM on February 5


Anna Domino guests on several tracks on the new album by venerable electronicists Ultramarine. I love her version of Isn't That So? - I tracked down the original and it was disappointingly shitkicking.
posted by Grangousier at 12:49 PM on February 5 [1 favorite]


What a tour!

I'm presently checking out Todd Snider. Someone passed me a link featuring "Can't Complain," and now I'm hooked.
posted by mule98J at 11:53 PM on February 5


I could happily discuss music all day long!

I’ve been singing since I could talk. I took piano lessons from ages 6 to 18. As a tween/teen I attended summer music camps, where I learned jazz & rock drumming alongside concert percussion. (Hopefully this doesn’t make me sound like a silver-spoon prep schooler - I promise, I wasn’t!)

In my time, I’ve written or co-written radio jingles, documentary soundtracks, ambient/relaxation music, and the odd pop song. I’ve also sat in the drum seat for more than one indie rock band.

If that weren’t enough, I’ve been in love with dance music since I was about 12, starting with synth-pop and working my way through house, techno, Eurodance, trance, drum’n’bass, and EDM - I have more than a few remixes and original tracks on iTunes, Apple Music, Beatport, etc.

(Oh, and I love hip-hop to the point where I just missed getting a record deal as a rapper, waaaaay back in 2003.)

The grand irony is I don’t my make a living from music - in a good year it’s a nice bit of extra income, in a bad year, forget about it - so my day job keeps the bills paid and a roof overhead.


My music library is suitably inclusive - everything from French Canuck folk songs, to metal, to extended DJ sets, to neo-classical, to some of today’s Top 40 pop divas. I prefer to listen digitally these days - either files or streaming - but I’m not at all adverse to physical media. I even have a cassette deck lying around for some old tapes I’ve not been able to find in other formats.

Some time ago, I was discussing musical opinions on a Facebook group, and I tried my best there to describe my ethos, which I’ll sum up as follows:

1) I don’t hate Nickelback, Justin Bieber, The Chainsmokers, The Black Eyed Peas, or any other popular artist that is frequently held up as “OMG the worst music ever”. I’ve worked on and off in the recording industry for the last two decades, and trust me when I say that there is infinitely worse stuff out there.

2) “Rap isn’t really music” is an argument that can die a fiery death, and a debate that I refuse to engage in any more. See also “house/techno/EDM is only for people who are on drugs“.

3) Just like with rock music, dance music has a mainstream and an alternative. Right now, some of the pop/EDM crossover stuff is more musically interesting than a lot of “credible”, “underground” stuff. At least, it is to me!

4) Nostalgia for vinyl is often a nostalgia for having the free time and lack of responsibility that allowed you to listen to an album in its entirety. Having just written that, I’ve acquired a turntable for the first time in ages, am revisiting the small stack of records that’s been moved with me since university, and am looking to get more as time and money allow.

5) Disco never sucked - at its heart, the music was just sped-up soul & funk. The entire Disco Sucks movement can be traced back to one American rock radio DJ, Steve Dahl, who organized the infamous Disco Demolition Rally - a racist, homophobic reaction by white rock fans who couldn’t handle a genre which openly celebrated gay folks & people of colour. (Dahl has tried to walk it back in recent years, saying “hey, you have to look at it through the lens of the era, I was just sticking up for rock & roll”, but I think he’s full of crap, and refuses to acknowledge the monster he helped to create.)

6a) While I love The Beatles and lots of other classic rock bands, I despise the Baby Boomer mentality that says these artists are untouchable and that music will never be this good again.

6b) Some sacred cow 60s acts like Hendrix and The Dead just pass me in both lanes. Don’t hate ‘em, don’t love ‘em, they just go in one ear & out the other. I’m way more excited by Motown, James Brown, and P-Funk.

6c) The Monkees were awesome and unfairly dismissed by the critics of their day. “Pleasant Valley Sunday”, “Goin’ Down”, and “Last Train To Clarksville” were as good as anything The Beatles ever did.


7) I’m a little wary of music that treats a rhythm section as a backdrop for endless guitar noodling. Maybe I’d feel differently if I played guitar myself?

Other than that, it’s a pretty wide open slate, and I love 

threads like this one - I'll be checking out other people's recommendations!

Here are some of my current faves:

“Conflict Minded” - Drug Church
Post-grunge/punk that takes an unexpectedly melodic left turn.




“Stay” - Zedd & Alessia Cara
Electronic pop that makes me bounce in my seat.



“Tell Me You Love Me” - Galantis & Throttle
Impossibly sunny EDM with a creamy Motown/disco filling.

“Tides (C's Movement No. 1)” - Beanfield
Raw, minimalist techno that very subtly evolves into a layered vocal piece over its running time.
 Listen to the whole thing on headphones if you can.

“Around The World” - Christian Prommer’s Drumlesson Yes, the old Daft Punk song, but completely replayed and expanded into a Latin jazz number. I want to be able to drum like this!!!

posted by tantrumthecat at 8:34 AM on February 6


and This Time by Anna Domino, the latter of whom sounds like Carly Rae Jepsen's weird aunt.

Anna Domino sounds like everyone's weird aunt. I fucking love her.

Light In The Attic's Lizzy Mercier Descloux reissues of a few years ago are definitely worth getting if you're someone who buys CDs. I honestly waited, like, 20 years for them. Currently, they're reissuing Haruomi Hosono and I am just as excited about it. Still hoping they'll get to Sandii & the Sunsetz one day before the world ends.

Today I'm rocking Numero's Basement Beehive: the girl group underground and YouTube's 5 Hours of Relaxing Psychedelic Space Rock.
posted by octobersurprise at 9:09 AM on February 6 [2 favorites]


The entire Disco Sucks movement can be traced back to one American rock radio DJ, Steve Dahl, who organized the infamous Disco Demolition Rally - a racist, homophobic reaction by white rock fans who couldn’t handle a genre which openly celebrated gay folks & people of colour. (Dahl has tried to walk it back in recent years, saying “hey, you have to look at it through the lens of the era, I was just sticking up for rock & roll”, but I think he’s full of crap, and refuses to acknowledge the monster he helped to create.)

This is weird to me because I feel like I'm seeing history being re-written right in front of my eyes to fit a modern narrative. It happens, it's just weird to watch. I see a bunch of articles about it, all from the last few years. There's not much to do about it, people love that story and it fits the current times. It says a lot more about 2019 than it does 1979.
posted by bongo_x at 11:32 AM on February 6 [3 favorites]


This is weird to me because I feel like I'm seeing history being re-written right in front of my eyes to fit a modern narrative.

I can see that, but it’s well documented that Disco Demolition attendees brought not just disco records, but records by Aretha Franklin, Stevie Wonder, James Brown, etc - basically any album with a prominent Black artist on the cover. Steve Dahl also openly aired homophobic comments about acts like the Bee Gees from rock fans who called into his show. He was definitely tapping into the prejudices of the day.
posted by tantrumthecat at 12:21 PM on February 6 [2 favorites]


This is weird to me because I feel like I'm seeing history being re-written right in front of my eyes to fit a modern narrative.

I mean, I think there's room for nuance in the historical interpretations and re-interpretations of the disco backlash. The "disco sucks" backlash was both a rejection of a fad past its sell-by date—and probably, on the whole, no more explicitly homophobic or racist than the straight, white audiences, on average, were at the time—and the expression of an intense dislike of a kind of music that was coded as "urban", feminine, flashy, frivolous, and fake, in favor of music championed as "real," loud, potent, masculine (and often, implicitly, white).

And that's actually not a new observation; it's an observation that occupied a lot of the arguments over "rockism" in the 80's and 90's. Tho Tim Lawrence's Love Saves The Day (2004) might be the first history of disco I saw that utilized that observation. (It seems like I recall seeing it even earlier, but offhand I can't think of a cite. Simon Reynolds? Paul Morley?)
posted by octobersurprise at 12:49 PM on February 6 [1 favorite]


I mean, I think "disco" does go from being regarded as this absolutely abhorrent thing in the late 70's and early '80s, to being largely ignored and forgotten by the late '80s, to "ironic" appreciation in the '90s, to then, in the late '90s and early '00s, post-Rave, post-House, etc., being reclaimed and recognized as a genuinely enjoyable, influential, and even artistically generative genre of music on its own.
posted by octobersurprise at 1:11 PM on February 6 [1 favorite]


I'm a huge unironic disco fan but I can understand the backlash to it by 79-80. Not much good was being made that was explicitly "disco" by then, it was just bland formulaic hooks with lazy "boogie woogie at the disco" lyrics and lacked all the freshness of what came before.

And I say this as someone whose favorite songs include two Chic tunes. ("My Feet Keep Dancing" is perhaps the most discoest disco that ever discoed.
posted by Burhanistan at 2:24 PM on February 6 [2 favorites]


2) “Rap isn’t really music” is an argument that can die a fiery death, and a debate that I refuse to engage in any more. See also “house/techno/EDM is only for people who are on drugs“.

This is how I address that argument: the future of music is not music.

Every new style that comes down the pike is called "not music" by squares and winds up staying around forever. 20 years after that we hear the lily-white newscaster saying "24/7," and "bye, Felicia." This cycle happens at least once per generation.
posted by rhizome at 3:32 PM on February 6 [4 favorites]


Of course there were different reads on the "disco sucks" thing from different perspectives, and certainly people who looked at it through the lens of their bigotry.

From my memory and perspective, first of all it was mostly a joke. Burning piles of records looks kind of scary in retrospect, but it was nonsense at the time. It wasn't a movement, it was a funny t shirt. Most people I knew didn't really hate disco at all, just were tired of bad disco everywhere, and it was everywhere.

It seemed to me it was way more of a class thing, this was the same time as Punk started happening. Disco was for rich white people to do cocaine to. Punk and Rock were working class. Disco was corporate and faceless. It's weird to see Disco positioned as the underclass and underdog. There was little mainstream "oh my god, disco" pearl clutching, it was everywhere and was safe for your parents. In the early days in some big cities it may have been different, but not mainstream 1979.

I can see that, but it’s well documented that Disco Demolition attendees brought not just disco records, but records by Aretha Franklin, Stevie Wonder, James Brown, etc - basically any album with a prominent Black artist on the cover. Steve Dahl also openly aired homophobic comments about acts like the Bee Gees from rock fans who called into his show. He was definitely tapping into the prejudices of the day.

I don't doubt it. But something being an aspect of it and being the driving force behind it are two different things. Some people are always going to miss the point and be assholes. I feel like these articles are written in a vacuum, ignoring Punk, the golden age of Funk bands, the start of Metal, as well as the Glam musicians who were barely gone when Disco started. There were certainly racial aspects to the rise of Punk and Metal, but I think class was a much bigger force.
posted by bongo_x at 4:04 PM on February 6 [5 favorites]


Some really interesting thoughts on the disco backlash, you guys (especially bongo_x.) Thanks to everyone who took the time to slog through my ridiculously long comment.
posted by tantrumthecat at 7:20 PM on February 6 [1 favorite]


I keep returning to Ponytail. They were joy and ecstasy, bottled into a can, the perfect sound of idealized youth.
posted by Going To Maine at 10:37 PM on February 6


There is something of an irony here, I think, in that during childhood I would have preferred something with far more words, more syllables and phrases and attempts to verbalize sentiment.
posted by Going To Maine at 11:04 PM on February 6


It seemed to me it was way more of a class thing, this was the same time as Punk started happening. Disco was for rich white people to do cocaine to. Punk and Rock were working class. Disco was corporate and faceless.

Not to belabor a point, but I think we're saying similar things here, just in different ways. Let me try to show my math— first, no one would argue that rock musicians or the rock music industry of the 1970's, of all decades, were either "working class," or abstemious of cocaine, so what "rock was working class" means rather, is that it was perceived to be "working class" or liked by people who thought of themselves as working class or embodying the virtues of the working class. But also certainly, no one identified rock musicians with the virtues of hard work, thrift, class solidarity, etc., so that identification points to other qualities attributed to the "working class", like ribaldry, authenticity, virility, and pugnacity, all placed in opposition to an Other conjured as effete, fake, urban (rich, corporate), malign (faceless), and feeble (music to do cocaine to). This is the very common construction of "working class" to mean, broadly, masculine, implicitly heterosexual, and implicitly white.

(Mind you, this is a trope, not an accurate description of an economic class, of course.)

So when I say that "disco sucks" was homophobic what I mean is that the way a largely straight audience constructed a category, "disco," as a thing to be abhorred was very much the same way the category of "gay" was—and to some degree still is—constructed to be reviled. The same language; the same metaphors. I don't mean that Steve Dahl—who obviously wasn't the only instigator of the disco backlash and whose own homophobia, whether it did or didn't exist, is largely beside the point—said crude things or burned a bunch of records.

Of course, further complicating all of this are A) by 1979 disco-as-a-fad really was past its sell-by-date. Suddenly, everything was disco! The market was saturated! Audiences—straight and not-straight—wanted to move on! And B) many of them moved on to Funk, R&B, New Wave, Hip Hop, House, Electro, Garage, etc., styles of music influenced by or nearly indistinguishable from disco music! (So it was entirely likely that a person burning their disco records was also buying Blondie or Talking Heads.)
posted by octobersurprise at 8:14 AM on February 7 [5 favorites]


Oh and this morning I'm listening to the new reissue of Wadada Leo Smith's Divine Love and Thelonious Monk's Les Liaisons Dangereuses 1960.
posted by octobersurprise at 8:22 AM on February 7


While performers and producers may have found themselves rich and living that lifestyle, many of their lyrics were about the neighborhood boys white boys trying to escape from the industrial or service labor of their dads ("Moving Out" and "Born to Run"), or trying to have sex away from the watchful eyes of co-habiting extended family ("Paradise by the Dashboard Light"). The bands that did make it big often had at least one song describing a mythology of hard work in dive bars, (Boston, "Rock & Roll Band"). That may have been performance but it was clear who the audience for "rock" was compared to "pop" or "hits" stations at the time. (And then there was the kind of silly rock/country cultural schism that music marketing was all into at the time.)

Complicating this are the multiple layers. In the schoolyard, there wasn't any kind of taboo against referring to the Bee Gees as fags or making jokes about Freddie Mercury or Bowie. Radio was a bit limited in what you could say, but emerging shock DJs who served as gatekeepers weren't above playing a clip of something "fruity" and then crashing it with laughter or sound effects. At the music-production level, image-groomers went out of their way to cram performative masculinity and heterosexuality into their lyrics. By the 1990s we were looking for LGBTQ-friendly artists in the absence of the nearly obligatory heterosexual signalling.
posted by GenderNullPointerException at 7:54 AM on February 8 [2 favorites]


That discussion brings to mind this blog post exploring REM's use of disco drum beats in their first few albums. Even genres which were trying to move away from it were heavily influenced by disco.
posted by MrVisible at 5:52 PM on February 8 [2 favorites]


My daughter was playing some new music, a woman, a songwriter, with a crystal clear voice reminiscent of First Aid Kit, she is with Paul Shaeffer's band. But I am filling in the next words, so I went looking and found this jewel.
/a>
posted by Oyéah at 5:05 PM on February 12


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