First of the months are BULLSHIT. Especially in the summer. Rent is due and you realize fall is just around the corner and then winter and then seasonal affective disorder and then considering moving to somewhere warmer and oh god firsts of the months are stressful. Anyway, here's what we've been listening to all week to cope with it.
(The above image is from this amaaaazing video unearthed by Found Footage Festival folks. Never have our lives been so accurately summed up in a single image.)Alvvays - "Archie, Marry Me"
Life sucks. We all know this. Everything is pointless. Existence is meaningless. You're on this planet for only a little bit of time, and most of that time you'll spend sleeping, during which you'll dream about a life you will never live or have nightmares about things that don't exist because they're nightmares but nightmares are fucking scary no matter what. In short, we're in hell already. That's why when a lovely, charming little song like Alvvays' "Archie, Marry Me"—one that's so whimsical it sounds like it fell out of Wes Anderson's record crate (and I mean that as a compliment)—comes along, we have to pay attention. Because even though it may feel like the world is crushing us, there will always be someone's hand to hold and someone's lips to kiss during a three minute song.
King avriel - Thesis
Yesterday King avriel dropped her first album Thesis and that is all that's been coming out of my speakers since. Avriel is not only really, really smart–like smarter than you and me (she TAs at UCLA and writes academic papers)–but she also knows how to write songs that have the familiar feeling of songs you already love but still sound entirely new. Frank Ocean is one of her idols and that shines through more than ever on this release. The subject matter is darker than her previous stuff. There's reckless teens, pregnant teens, intoxicated teens–it's the kind of stuff CW shows wish they were made of. It's also the perfect stopgap while we're waiting for Frank Ocean's new album.
Rage Against the Machine - "Tire Me"
Yo, I’mma be real honest with you. I’ve been listening to Rage Against the Machine this week. I wrote this dumb thing about bands who have been banned from MTV. (Rage was banned from SNL in 1996. Why, you ask? Guess you'll have to click the link to find out! Thank you for your patronage.) Looking back on Rage almost 20 years later, lyrically, they are kinda goofy. They come off like a buncha kids who just graduated from a liberal arts college with a degree in poly-sci and have VERY SERIOUS opinions about global issues. But honestly, can’t take much away from the music of those first two albums. Way cheesy at times, but also, it was the 90s. Just put your JNCOs back on and think about remember all those political issues you were so serious about back then. Like, uh… can’t remember now, but seemed important at the time.
Snoop Dogg - "Snoopafella"
Snoop Dogg has had an amazing career, the latest chapter of which we documented this week by premiering his dope William Bell collaboration. Snoop's career is so expansive that there are probably a hundred corners of it that you have no idea about (before you protest, True Snoop Fan, consider that he has literally hundreds of IMDB credits, and that's not even his main artistic focus). One of these for me, which I uncovered this week, was this track from the 1999 album No Limit Top Dogg (oh yeah, remember when Snoop was on No Limit?), which is a retelling of the Cinderella story in which Snoop is Cinderella and his glass slipper is a Chuck Taylor sneaker and his evil stepbrothers all get to rock FUBU while he cleans the house. Miraculously, it's also a pretty great song from a musical perspective, and it's absolutely one of the most entertaining stories you will ever hear rapped. I hope somewhere somebody has the movie rights to this and is working on an adaptation because I would watch the shit out of that.
Martyrdod - "Elddop"
If you have ever liked any of the following things then I am going to go out on a limb and say you will like Martyrdod's new LP Elddop: metal, punk, hardcore, crust, AC/DC, prog, rock, soft rock, hamburgers, hot dogs, vegetarian food, cookies, coffee, automobiles, melodies, breathing. Continuing in a longstanding tradition of total fucking burners, the new Martyrdod LP rips. It's one of the few records that you can hum along to while raising your fist in triumph.
Ana Caprix - "FullBody"
One of the most beautiful songs of the year is also one of the most turnt. I've been listening to this every morning on the way to the train, and it gives me a sense of infinite optimism that is immediately crushed by the harsh realities of everyday life.
Drake ft. Jhene Aiko - "From Time"
It’s OVO Fest, it’s OVO Fest, it’s OVO Fest!!! By this point, we’ve figured out everyone who might could possibly be a special guest at the festival based on the thorough checking of celebrity schedules and the shaking down of local sources. Justin Bieber will likely not be in attendance, but everyone else is fair game. It’s almost certain that Jhene Aiko will be backstage, since it’s not like she has anything better to do with her time. This means that we’ll get to hear this song performed live, which is cool because it's most romantic duet of our generation. That is, until “Anaconda” comes out, or until Adele and Chris Brown record a duet. Wait a minute, has anyone checked where Adele will be during OVO Fest?!