2013 has been a year of marvelous releases. A few personal favorites have been Kanye’s Yeezus, James Blake’s Overgrown, Streetlight Manifesto’s The Hands That Thieve, and Daft Punk’s triumphant return with Random Access Memories, but these don’t even begin to comprise a complete highlight list. Coming up with my list of Top Albums for the year is going to be an intensive process and I’m looking forward to it; in between debating the merits of different albums, I get to listen to all of them again. It’s going to be something truly magical. A much easier list to make, though, is my favorite albums of the semester. While a lot of the heavy hitters for the year were released outside of that time period, there’s a great amount of quality for just these ~3 months. In my opinion, these were the cream of the crop (presented in alphabetical order by artist). [Read more...]
It’s here. After a beautifully executed marketing campaign highlighted by street art veve drawings and fictional bands, Arcade Fire’s fourth studio album, Reflektor, has arrived to bring music to our waiting ears. At a personal level, this record has struck a vibrant chord with me. The simplistic epic that was “Wake Up” from Arcade Fire’s debut, Funeral, was one of the first songs that opened up my musical horizons past classic rock, where I had always thought that the guitar solo was king. I’m finding my tastes diverging now into more like that of a dance-maven, and so a danceable album from the band that was a real catalyst in getting me to originally expand my musical horizons might just be my favorite release of the year when it’s all said and done.
Halloween is only a week away. Many people would say that it is a haunting time of year. Haunting is defined as “poignant and evocative; difficult to ignore or forget.” In that spirit, here are eight songs that are haunting in some or many aspects, but at the same time leave you in awe of their beauty; a different kind of Halloween song. [Read more...]
I go on a lot of road trips. I have to drive between Albuquerque, NM and Nashville, TN twice per year so I can have access to my car in my two homes. I drive to retreats and district events for Tau Beta Sigma, the band service organization I am a part of. I drive to various music festivals. I’m going to be driving to Mardi Gras this spring. And while some people may not understand it, I love all of these long drives, and one of the main reasons for that is having a good road trip playlist. Having been fortunate enough to be travelling to festivals for two of the past three weekends, I’ve decided to share a few of my current favorite road trip albums.