The Friday Five – August 4, 2017

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I’ll be back in the PNW in a couple of weeks, and by some crazy awesome luck, I’ll also be seeing two fantastic bands perform while I’m there: Filthy Friends, and Wimps. When I booked my airfare eight months ago, I hoped that there would be some good shows taking place while I was out that way. There’s always great music happening in Portland and Seattle, but I didn’t expect to see some of my faves. When I found out Filthy Friends (the supergroup headed by Corin Tucker and Peter Buck) was performing in Eugene, I grabbed tickets. We’d planned a day in Eugene anyway to check out the local record shops, so it worked out perfectly. And then I found out Wimps would be opening for them — hooooo, that’s gonna be a good show.

Also, last time we were in Portland, we were supposed to go see Wimps, but then some assholes broke into our house back home and we had to fly out immediately. So this makes up for us not getting to see them last time.

For those readers who don’t know these bands, here are some tunes you can check out.

Wimps – Repeat

Filthy Friends – The Arrival

Wimps – Old Guy
(yeah, this might be me at the show that night)

Filthy Friends – Despierta

Wimps – Couches

The Friday Five – July 28, 2017

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It’s almost time for my vacation in the Pacific Northwest, so I’ve been busy creating playlists of all my favorite PNW bands, and deciding what albums off my want list I’d like to look for when I visit all those amazing record shops in Portland and Seattle.  I’ve had so much awesome ’90s music in my head that I thought I’d share a few of my favorites for this week’s Friday Five.  Now, I could easily just lay down five Sleater-Kinney tracks, because you know they’re my favorite PNW band.  But I’ll refrain.  For now.

Bangs – S.O.S.

Dear Nora – You Are 26

Lois – The Trouble With Me

Team Dresch – Remember Who You Are

Beat Happening – Godsend

The Friday Five – July 7, 2017

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I’ve been trying to slow myself down a little these days.  I’m spending less time online and more time outdoors.  I’m trying to rush less and pause more and allow time to pass at its own pace instead of urging it forward.  And with this change, I’ve found myself drawn to more soothing music.  I used to require the urgency of punk or good, driving indie rock to get me through the workday.  But these days, I fill my eight hours with a softer sound (with the occasional burst of Sleater-Kinney for the moments that need some electricity).

For this week’s Friday Five, I thought I’d share some of the quieter sounds I go to when I’m trying to stay grounded in the moment.

Frally – “Song Bird”

Sarah Harmer, Bry Webb & Jim Guthrie – “Long Time Before This”

Marketa Irglova – “Point of Creation”

Sufjan Stevens – “Death With Dignity”

Tori Amos – “Twinkle”

The Friday Five – June 16, 2017

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Another great week full of music.  Check out some recent faves below.

Stars – “Privilege” & “We Called It Love”

New Stars.  How fantastic to wake up to new Stars.  There are two tracks, and I’m posting them both, because NEW STARS.

Spotify sucks and won’t embed, so click this link

Gordi – “Heaven I Know”

I’m new to Gordi, but dang, I’m loving the Imogen Heap vibes.  I spent Wednesday listening to hours of her music, and I’m hooked.

Charly Bliss – “Westermarck”

Fun tune, super fun video.

SOAR – “Fort Funston”

I kinda love music that references places (which is one of the reasons why I love Canadian music — Canadian musicians aren’t afraid to write about the places they know).  Specificity never hinders music, in my opinion.  So I’m digging this new tune by SOAR.

The Friday Five – June 9, 2017

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It’s late.  I should be getting some sleep since I’m taking a trip tomorrow to visit a good friend and see a concert, but I couldn’t skip posting five bangers for you guys.  This week has been flush with good tunes — so many that I have to save some for next week’s list.

I’m starting off with the brand new tune by Torres.  I’ve been waiting for this for AGES.  “Sprinter” was one of my favorite albums of 2015, and every time I listen to it, I just fall to pieces.  It’s a stunning record.  And I’ve been whining for months and months on Twitter, wondering when Torres would put out some new material.

And then she dropped her new track, “Skim.”  I bounced around in my cube like a maniac all day.  I posted gifs of a vintage Whitney Houston screaming and dancing.  I was SHOOK.  And the song is everything I had hoped it would be.  The video is not exactly SFW, so if you’re worried about that, head on over to Spotify to stream it.  But listen to it.  You have to.

Torres – “Skim”

Beth Ditto – “We Could Run”

Hot damn!  Another excellent track from Beth Ditto’s fresh solo album.  (Also check out “Fire,” ’cause GIRL.)

Alvvays – “In Undertow”

Oh man.  I love Alvvays.  I picked up their self-titled album while on a trip to Canada last year, and it still gets a lot of play during my workday.  Looking forward to their new album.

Waxahatchee – “Never Been Wrong”

The Crutchfields have superpowers.  I’m convinced of it.  Everything they do is amazing.  Check out the second offering from Katie’s upcoming album, “Out In The Storm.”

Iron & Wine – “Call It Dreaming”

Call me the whitest hipster ever, but I can’t help it.  Sam Beam’s voice just does something to me.  I actually got teary toward the end of this video, y’all.  But then again, I think that a lot of Iron & Wine songs make me cry.  I’m a sensitive hipster.

Holiday Sampler 2016

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A new feature!  Instead of doing the Friday Five for the month of December, I’ve decided to highlight a holiday/festive song each day.  Some are classics, some are more contemporary, but all are great tunes.  Check out today’s selection, and come back daily for a new track to get you in the holiday spirit.

December 1: Donny Hathaway, “This Christmas”

The Friday Five – November 18, 2016

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There’s been a lot of great music coming out recently.  I’ve accumulated quite a list of tracks over the past month or so.  Here are five that I’ve been enjoying.  What has everyone else been listening to these days?

1.  Lucius – “Pulling Teeth”

You can’t really go wrong with Lucius.

2.  Austra – “Utopia”

Dang, am I happy she’s back.

3.  El Perro Del Mar – “KoKoro”

I’ve just recently started listening to El Perro, and damn, it’s so good.

4.  Allison Crutchfield – “Dean’s Room”

I am so, so looking forward to this album coming out in January.

5.  Cavegreen – “Witches Dream”

So new to me, and so freaking good.

The Friday Five – October 14, 2016

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It seems like a lot of great albums are coming out on October 28th.  I know I have some records coming in the mail that are being released that day, and there are others too.  I’ve been tripping over fantastic, new-to-me music all week, and each time I research the artist, bam — new album coming out on October 28th.  Maybe the music planets are aligning that day or something.

I had an extensive list of songs I’ve been accumulating since last Friday, but I’ve narrowed it down to the five that have stuck with me the most.  Some are new, some are new-to-me, but all are introspective, haunting, beautiful songs.

1.  Emily Reo – “Spell”

This track is gorgeous.  It’s Imogen Heap’s “Hide & Seek” v2, though to simply relegate it to a comparison is really doing it an injustice.  It stands firmly on its own.

2.  Julianna Barwick – “Crystal Lake”

I can’t even remember where I stumbled across this song, but it captured my attention immediately, and then I proceeded to listen to all the Julianna Barwick tracks I could find.

3.  Salvia Palth – “I Was All Over Her”

Lo-fi, shoegaze, bedroom pop at its finest.  I always seem to come across these little musical projects long after they’ve disbanded.  It’s my curse.

4.  Foxes in Fiction – “Ontario Gothic”

I’m just a super fan of everything Orchid Tapes is putting out.  Seriously good.  Why don’t I own anything by this band??

5.  Gord Downie – “The Stranger”

This is the new song and video for the reconciliation project Gord Downie’s been working on.  It’s part of an album/graphic novel/film release based on the tragic story of Chanie Wenjack, who died after escaping a residential school and attempting to make the trek home to his family.  Gord’s doing some amazing work during his last years on this earth, and this project is not only haunting and stunning, but so very necessary for Canada.

The Friday Five – October 7, 2016

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I missed the Friday Five last week. I had planned to pre-write the post and then publish it from the road since I knew I’d be traveling, but I didn’t remember until it was too late. Last Friday I was in Canada at the Kingston Writers Festival, attending a talk/performance by Anna and Jane McGarrigle, moderated by Sarah Harmer. What a great event.

But I’m back this week with some tunes to share. Some of these are recent releases, and some are a little older, but most of them are from new-to-me artists. Check ’em out and let me know what’s been on your playlist this week.

1.  Flock of Dimes – “Semaphore”

2.  Yohuna – “Golden Foil”

3.  From Indian Lakes – “Blank Tapes”

4.  Hazel English – “It’s Not Real”

5.  Forty Seven Teeth – “All the Feels”