I just can’t resist the name of this album. That is all. Spark Plug by Stereolab from the album Emperor Tomato Ketchup, 1996.
Stumbled upon this track and was pretty sure I had discovered some sort of underground hipster haven. Catchy, amusing – and most of all, undiscovered. Turns out (as it almost always does), that this single – by a 16-year old New Zealander – got half a million hits on YouTube last year. So, I’m not exactly the early adopter I thought. Still, I can’t help loving this little anthem. Royals by Lorde from the EP The Love Club, 2013.
Day two in London is a power-shopping day. I’m hoping to cover quite a bit of ground – from Covent Garden to Mayfair to Knightsbridge, with a trek down the Kings Road to top things off. To prevent me from getting too hyper-focused on the tasks at hand I’m turning to London’s own Martina Topley-Bird to chill me out so I can savor the experience. Soul Food by Martina Topley-Bird from the album Anything, 2004.
When I first started listening to this album, I just couldn’t bring myself to fall in love – it was such a departure from their earlier work. Until I let that go. No, this isn’t the same Zero 7 I became enraptured by at the Soho Grand all those years ago, but it’s got it’s own bit of goodness. Pop Art Blue by Zero 7 from the album Yeah Ghost, 2009.
Continuing this week’s “all London, all the time” theme, today’s track features a youthful, snark-laiden bit of pop from British singer/songwriter Kate Nash (who – technically – was born in Dublin, but grew up in London, so I’ve made the executive decision that she’s plenty London enough). Foundations By Kate Nash from the album of the same name, 2007.
On a hot, humid summer day like today, there’s really nothing I’d rather do than splash into some lovely ocean waters. However, being that Minneapolis is not terribly convenient to an actual coastline, I’ll have to settle for being washed over by waves of a chill-y bit of Euro trip-hop. The Sea by Morcheeba from the album Big Calm, 1998.
I’m proud to say I was able to resist the overwhelming temptation to play a snippet of George Michael today (much to the relief of many of you, I assume) to mark the sentiment of this holiday week. Instead, I’ve opted for a British voice out of Brooklyn with an indie-pop beat. Freedom by Kirstin Price from the album Guts and Garbage, 2008.
On this fine day, I find myself oceanside; sipping a savory blendy drink on the beach in Mexico. Yet this trip is less so about reenacting spring breaks from years gone by. Instead, I’m unearthing a bit of inner refreshment; discovering some clarity; reenergizing. Made me think of the lyrics of this song: “My head’s full of self-pity and noise; I need a clean me; I need a new voice”. Yes, this is a very good place to be indeed. Down to the Sea by Tim Booth from the album Bone, 2005.
I’m so all-together o-v-e-r the clichéd love songs being played relentlessly in honor of Valentines Day next week. Thus, I’m compelled to share something a little more off the beaten path. I know I just recently featured Martina, but her sultry ode to February 14th totally merits some air play this week. Valentine by Martina Topley Bird from the album Some Place Simple, 2010.
I found myself enjoying lunch at the Coffee Shop in NYC, effortlessly blending in with all the Union Square hipsters. (Well, this is what I tell myself. Surely, my ill-conceived new haircut – which has me looking much like a CNN anchorwoman – is a dead giveaway that I’m something of a poser here.) Nevertheless, I’m busy blending, when I take notice of the music they’re playing. Huh, I thought. I need that. So, out comes the iPhone and… Shazam! …Nothing. (Urban hipster scenes are notoriously loud.) Thus, in a truly unconscious act of determination, this proudly middle-aged woman woman defied her circumstances and – much to the horror of the pouty wait staff – stood tippy-toe atop the lovely leather booth, arm extended towards the nearest speaker… and… Shazam! Somewhat shameless, but entirely victorious. In the end, I think this bit of Euro indie pop out of Barcelona was worth it. TMCR Grand Finale by the Pinker Tones, from the album The Million Colour Revolution, 2006.
Something a little different today: you’ll find TWO little audio buttons below for your listening pleasure. As many of you who’ve followed for a while may know, Sia is among my favorite contemporary artists. So when it came to selecting today’s track, I couldn’t decide between two versions of the same song. They’re both quite extraordinary; one, a seductive slice of dance-y electronica, the other, a powerfully intimate piece best known as the music from the series finale of “Six Feet Under”. Breathe Me (Mylo Remix Version and Original Version) by Sia from the Album Breathe Me (Single), 2004.