Last week was indeed a long week. While The Ghost was without heat, neither power nor water services were disrupted. That means that through space heaters, firewood, and cats, I made it through the week alright. Plus, I had lots of spare time. In fact, I took the opportunity to do some painting classes, where I produced a very special piece that I call “Monday Mixteen: 2/22/21.” If you study carefully, you will notice that the brush strokes around the edges of the cassette represent the uncertainty felt in 21st century America.
OK, so I made all that up, and I did not paint that picture. I did take a little time to dabble in the features of Gimp software, for whatever that’s worth. Plus I had lots of time to listen to music. This isn’t really a themed playlist, but rather a list of songs that for whatever reason, I’ve been listening to a lot lately, and that have struck a chord with me. See if these songs hit you like they hit The Ghost.
- New Avenues, “Roman”
There is something light and airy in the melody of this New Avenues track that feels like Spring. And after last week’s weather, feeling like Spring is great in my book.
- Dossey, “Black Paint”
I feature Austin musician Dossey’s track “Someone to Love” last week. While I definitely like that song, this song is an absolute beast. The beats on this track alone are reason enough to recommend the track. Throw in some passionate and dramatic vocals from Dossey, and you’ve got a track with an intensity that on a scale from 1 to 10 ranks a minimum of 11.
- Edgar Derby, “Better Being Lucky”
I watched the Twitch stream celebrating the release of the new Edgar Derby album Dancing in Death/The Place Where the River Makes a Sound. During his stream, the idea of listening to an album as a whole versus song by song was brought up, noting that one would not generally select one chapter of a book to be read. While The Ghost does specialize in playlists that pull apart these unique stories, I will say that the Edgar Derby album is one where the impact of the full album exceeds the sum of the individual songs.
- Secrecies, “Far Away So Close”
It was nice of Secrecies to drop this re-recorded version of the song from their self-titled debut. Really, it was. But can we have a new album now? Please?
- Dante Higgins, “God Told Me to Drop This”
The Ghost is glad that this Houston rapper took God’s advice, because this is one of the more interesting hip-hop tracks I’ve heard out of the state in a bit.
- trauma ray, “Seen”
As of last week, the new trauma ray EP was only available through Bandcamp. Fortunately, all the usual streaming suspects now have their new music.
I featured “Deadpan” in last week’s Ten for Your Attention. Here’s another blistering sample of rock from the band.
- Ottoman Turks, “Wound Up”
This new Ottoman Turks song sounds very, well, Ottoman Turks-ish. Hey, if it ain’t broke…j
- Garrett Owen, “Heart-Shaped Box”
Mr. Owen released this stunning Nirvana cover this past Saturday, on what would have been Kurt Cobain’s 54th birthday. That math can’t be right, because that would mean I’m… nevermind.
- Phantomelo, “Crimson Tide”
The band traded in a hare of their rawness in favor of some extra keyboards and hooks on this track, and I suspect the band’s fanbase will be growing in the coming weeks and months. And if I’m wrong, then there’s a problem, and it isn’t with me or Phantomelo.
- Jackson Scribner, “I Don’t Think About It”
There’s no doubt that this recording by Mr. Scribner benefitted from the production skills of Jeff Ryan (St. Vincent, Pleasant Grove) and backing musicians such as John Dufilho (Deathray Davies, Cantina) and David Ponder (Somebody’s Darling, Crystal Rippers) just to drop a few names. Ultimately, though, it’s Scribner’s laid back vocal delivery and melody, along with the lyrics, that sells the song.k
- CANA!, “That’s It”
In the late 1990’s into the early 2000’s, I started hearing a number of high energy Latin influenced dance tracks, and I never understood how that sound never broke through more into the mainstream. It was far and above the standard Top 40 dance fare that was traditionally on the radio at the time. The reason I bring this up is that CANA! may have just released “That’s It” last year, the sound harkens back to that time period. Maybe CANA! will get people dancing in the clubs. Well, if we ever get to open the clubs again.
- Edie Brickell & New Bohemians, “Miracles”
I have to give Edie and her band credit. They could have easily replicated the sonic formula that made them stars back in the 80’s. Instead, the new album Hunter and the Dog Star is a decidedly modern record. This track lets Ms. Brickell get into a real chill indie psych type vibe, and it’s seriously cool.
- Mean Motor Scooter, “Zombie Cops”
A recent Facebook discussion brought up an interesting debate: are The Replacements or MMS the ultimate rock and roll band? I’ll say this: in the song title competition, “Zombie Cops” totally beats out “Bastards of Young”. As for which is the better band, I maintain that Mean Motor Scooter needs to cover “Bastards of Young” to help settle the matter.
- The Sudden Walk, “Artificially Genuine”
The band’s website says the band is “a sonic cocktail of kraut-rock, post-punk and dub.” All I know is that it has Mike Rudnicki of Baboon on lead vocals, and that this song’s catchy.
- Kady Speeks, “How Dare You”
I featured this track a few weeks ago on my #WCW themed playlist, and I keep coming back to this particular track for repeat plays. I took that as a sign that I should reshare the track on this week’s Monday Mixteen.
- Dezmond Walker, “Move On”
Last week’s playlist specifically featured songs with “Love” in the title. While the word never appears in the lyrics, this break-up song is so honest in its delivery that my heart breaks just a little bit every time I hear it. PSA: if you’ve experienced a painful end to a relationship recently, do not listen to this song without a full box of Kleenex nearby.