Weekly Playlist 039

This past Friday, I celebrated my 25th birthday, and I can think of only a few things that have helped shape my personality more than music during my time alive. During my childhood, I was primarily influenced by my father and the music my family listened to on car rides and on our stereo; later on, throughout my middle school and high school years, I had a more direct and intentional role in the development of my musical tastes. By college, I had discovered Spotify, which allowed me to experiment with different genres that I hadn’t been exposed to, as well as build a catalogue of music without paying for each individual song or album.

I thought about creating a list of my top 25 songs from my 25 years, but that quickly proved to be quite impossible, considering the amount of music that I would have to choose from. Instead, I included a list of 25 of my favorite artists and their albums that have impacted me during my life; it is in a roughly chronological order, from earlier exposure to more recent exposure.

artist album(s)
1. U2* Joshua Tree, All That You Can't Leave Behind, How To Dismantle An Atomic Bomb, Songs Of Innocence
2. Matchbox Twenty* More Than You Think You Are, Mad Season
3. Red Hot Chili Peppers* One Hot Minute, Californication, By The Way, Stadium Arcadium, The Getaway
4. Live Throwing Copper, Songs From Black Mountain
5. Pearl Jam* Ten, Vs., Backspacer
6. Nine Inch Nails Pretty Hate Machine, Downward Spiral, With Teeth, Hesitation Marks
7. Smashing Pumpkins Melan Colie and the Infinite Sadness, Siamese Dream
8. Linkin Park Hybrid Theory, Meteora, Minutes To Midnight
9. Jimmy Eat World* Bleed American, Chase This Light, Damage, Integrity Blues
10. Coldplay* Parachutes, A Rush Of Blood To The Head, X & Y, Viva La Vida Or Death And All His Friends, Mylo Xyloto
11. Foo Fighters The Color And The Shape, In Your Honor, Echos Silence Patience & Grace, Wasting Light
12. Daft Punk Homework, Discovery, Human After All, Alive 2007, Random Access Memories
13. Gorillaz Gorillaz, Demon Days, Plastic Beach, Humanz
14. The Killers Hot Fuss, Sam's Town, Day & Age, Battle Born
15. Shiny Toy Guns We Are Pilots, Season of Poison, III
16. Death Cab For Cutie* Transatlanticism, Plans, Narrow Stairs, Kintsugi
17. Passion Pit* Manners, Gossamer, Kindred
18. Enter Shikari Take To The Skies, Common Dreads, A Flash Of Flood And Color, The Mindsweep, Redshift (EP)
19. Kanye West The College Dropout, Late Registration, My Beaufitul Dark Twisted Fantasy, The Life Of Pablo
20. Fleet Foxes Sun Giant (EP), Fleet Foxes, Helplessness Blues
21. The Decemberists Castaways And Cutouts, Picaresque, The Crane Wife, The King Is Dead, What A Terrible World What A Beaufitul World
22. Bon Iver For Emma Forever Ago, Blood Bank (EP), Bon Iver, 22 A Million
23. Friendly Fires Friendly Fires, Pala
24. The Weeknd Kissland, Trilogy, Starboy
25. St. Lucia* St. Lucia (EP), When The Night, Matter
* = bands/artists I have seen live.

This past week, folk band Fleet Foxes, chillwave artist Shallou, and indie outfit The National all release some new singles; these singles joined some other older songs by R&B/Electronic producter KAYTRANADA, experimental indie/electronic artist Francis and the Lights, and emo/rock group Jimmy Eat World to round out my list. Also present: a great version of “I Still Haven’t Found What I’m Looking For” from U2’s Joshua Tree 30th Anniversary tour, going on now, and a standalone single by Portugal. The Man, featuring blues/funk guitarists Richie Havens and Son Little.

Fleet Foxes’ “Fool’s Errand” showcases the Foxes’ signature style of blended chamber pop with ’60s psychadelic and folk elements; it gives another preview of their upcoming album Crack-Up, out June 16, after “Third Of May/Ōdaigahara” debuted earlier this year.

I discovered Shallou a few weeks ago when I found his single “Fiction” on the “New Releases” tab of Spotify in April, engaged by its calm opening riffs of guitar plucks and atmospheric synth background. This past friday, Shallou released All Becomes Okay, which is filled with the same style of beautifully-crafted chillwave/electronic songs. For one of my songs this week, I chose the opening song, titled “Last Day…”, which starts off with a quite piano sequence, which is eventually accompanied by an electronic drum/bass track; its climactic sequence ties the differing elements together very well before leading to the outro.

The National is one of those bands I’ve heard a lot about and have friends that listen to them, but I’ve never really listend to. To be honest, the only reason I gave their new release “The System Only Dreams In Total Darkness” a shot is because one of the people I follow on Twitter gave some high praise to the guitar solo in this song. I am glad that I checked out the song, as my Twitter friends was absolutely correct about the solo, but the arrangement of the layered instrumentation and vocals were also interesting and enjoyable.

Here are my picks for the weeks of May 8-May 14.

  1. Number OnePortugal. The Man feat. Richie Havens and Son Little
  3. EtcFrancis and the Lights
  4. Miss RightAnderson Paak
  5. True Love And A Free Life Of Free WillJapandroids
  6. Fool’s ErrandFleet Foxes New Release
  7. Last Day…Shallou New Release
  8. If You Don’t, Don’tJimmy Eat World
  9. The System Only Dreams In Total DarknessThe National New Release
  10. I Still Haven’t Found What I’m Looking For - Live/Chorus versionU2 New Release