Tuesday, October 2, 2012

5 records you may want to check out.

its official. its no longer summer. new seasons call for new music populating the speakers. are you looking for something fresh and new to break the monotony of all that taylor swift, one direction, and maroon 5 clogging up the air waves? heres a few of my recent favorites that you may want to give a listen to...

1. mumford and sons "babel"
this album just screams october to me. it takes the traditional americana-style instrumentation and song structure to new heights - recalling the grandeur of U2 and coldplay. its definitely the most powerful banjo-starring album you will have heard in a long time (or ever). special props go out to the 'deluxe edition', featuring a cover of simon & garfunkel's fantastic "the boxer", along with the album closer that somehow didnt make the album, "where are you now".
standout tracks (beside those two) are "i will wait", "holland road", and "ghosts that we knew".

2. john mayer "born and raised"
if you know any of mayer's previous music, this album wont come as too much of a surprise. luckily though, he kicks back a bit here, bringing out some of that california/country feel that just sets a great vibe throughout. its a solid listen from front to back... a true album in the age of $.99 single song downloads.
but... if you have to pick just a few, i'd suggest "queen of california", "walt grace's submarine test, january 1967", and "love is a verb".

3. the black keys "el camino"
hey - i like the black keys! i bet you didn't know that. as a matter of fact, im wearing a black keys shirt as i type this. this album has been out all year, and many people have come to know and love the keys from the album's standout singles "lonely boy" (have you seen that video!?!) and "gold on the ceiling". this album will rock your face off. it, along with their previous album "brothers" are perennial favorites in the stahl house (as well as my art room). if you haven't heard them yet, do yourself a favor and head over to itunes right about... now.

4. the avett brothers "the carpenter"
these guys played with bob dylan at the grammys (along with the aforementioned mumford and sons) a few years back. it garnered them a lot of much-deserved attention. their new record is another modern take on traditional american song writing and instrumentation. a variety of stringed instruments (including banjo, mandolin and acoustic guitar) take center stage, along with piano and the interweaving harmonies of the brothers scott and seth. its great crunchy fall music to go with your pumpkin spice latte (and yeah, starbucks probably sells it at their register)... and somehow it manages to rock pretty hard.
standout tracks are "february seven", "the once and future carpenter", and "live and die".

5. sea wolf "old world romance"

sea wolf finds itself in a realm somewhere between the cure and matt pond pa (if you've never heard those bands... what are you waiting for?!?)... or for a more recently comparison, they sound like the shins more mellow cousins. its the perfect music for a grey rainy day. good music to get lost in and make some art to.
top 3 tracks are "old friend", "priscilla", and "changing seasons".

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