A handful of songs from 2013, that I liked enough to share. Good mix this time I think, I had fun making it this month. Will try to step back up on the mix game now though.- almostaghost
Tag Archive for 'Eleanor Friedberger'
Hi, what’s new? I have a couple of post/review ideas that I want to write up soon, but they’re both a bit involved/lengthy and I need to find the time/motivation. Will work on them asap. In the meantime, here’s my songs-of-the-day mix.- almostaghost
^ first, a mix. It’s not ALL songs from my top 20 albums either. I do like other things too.
And had a couple of requests for an extended list, so here it is. A few that narrowly missed the top-20 just came out, and if I’d had them longer and given them more of a chance, they could’ve climbed up. Artists, next time, release your albums before November, kthxbye!
1. Gillian Welch – The Harrow & The Harvest
2. The Antlers – Burst Apart
3. Radiohead – The King Of Limbs
4. The Kills – Blood Pressures
5. Kate Bush – 50 Words For Snow
6. The War On Drugs – Slave Ambient
7. Lia Ices – Grown Unknown
8. Bon Iver – Bon Iver, Bon Iver
9. The Black Keys – El Camino
10. Shabazz Palaces – Black Up
11. Fleet Foxes – Helplessness Blues
12. Lykke Li – Wounded Rhymes
13. St. Vincent – Strange Mercy
14. Thurston Moore – Demolished Thoughts
15. Eleanor Friedberger – Last Summer
16. Cut Copy – Zonoscope
17. Disappears – Guider
18. Youth Lagoon – The Year Of Hibernation
19. Vetiver – The Errant Charm
20. Bjork – Biophilia
21. Death Cab For Cutie – Codes And Keys
22. Sophie Zelmani – Soul
23. Little Dragon – Ritual Union
24. Gudrid Handottir – Beyond The Grey
25. My Morning Jacket – Circuital
26. Radical Face – The Family Tree: The Roots
27. Iron & Wine – Kiss Each Other Clean
28. Tom Waits – Bad As Me
29. Feist – Metals
30. Laura Marling – A Creature I Don’t Know
31. Anna Ternheim – The Night Visitor
32. Clap Your Hands Say Yeah – Hysterical
33. M83 – Hurry Up, We’re Dreaming
34. R.E.M. – Collapse Into Now
35. Rachel Goodrich – Rachel Goodrich
36. Bell X1 – Bloodless Coup
37. Dum Dum Girls – Only In Dreams
38. Wilco – The Whole Love
39. Wire – Red Barked Tree
40. Marketa Irglova – Anar
41. Marissa Nadler – Marissa Nadler
42. Jay-Z & Kanye West – Watch The Throne
43. Stephen Malkmus and the Jicks – Mirror Traffic
44. Ghostpoet – Peanut Butter Blues & Melancholy Jam
45. Release The Sunbird – Come Back To Us
46. CANT – Dreams Come True
47. Babette Hayward – You Might Be Somebody
48. The Roots – Undun
49. Wild Flag – Wild Flag
50. Paul Simon – So Beautiful Or So What
51. Thea Gilmore – John Wesley Harding
52. PJ Harvey – Let England Shake
53. Blood Orange – Coastal Grooves
54. The Black Belles – The Black Belles
55. Alela Diane – Alela Diane & Wild Divine
56. Snoop Dogg – Doggumentary
57. Washed Out – Within And Without
58. Ringo DeathStarr – Colour Trip
59. Pterodactyl Plains – In The Air
60. Florence + The Machine – Ceremonials
that’s enough; all 60 of these I do like! You can listen to my 20 favorites on my Spotify playlist. Add me on there!
Thanks for reading. Thanks for following along. Thanks for talking about music, making recommendations, and sharing stuff with me. On to 2012!- almostaghost
I am not sure what happened to Eleanor Friedberger last summer exactly, but it seems to have inspired an album full of nostalgic songs about getting lost and failed romance.
Friedberger’s considerable talent is in her observational and uniquely specific, semi-stream-of-conscious songwriting. Memories are like that though, right? You don’t just remember the car crash last year, you remember that “the ambulance was called by a guy and his friend called Guru / they were visiting from California / they saved my life.” She is not necessarily going for universal philosophical ideas (one way for a listener to connect to a song), but going in the opposite direction – zeroing in on whatever details are still there in her mind. This sort of specificity makes the songs feel more immediate, even more real. I’ve never been in a car crash, but hearing her sing of one (on “My Mistakes), I feel connected because of the detail, and sense the wonder it caused.
Similarly, “Inn Of The Seventh Ray” seems to specifically recall getting lost in Los Angeles on a date. Without explicitly bringing it up, it ends up as a look at broken promises of a broken relationship (“you promised to take me to the Inn Of The Seventh Ray / if you only knew the way”). In only writing about the trip to the restaurant, she ends writing about so much more. Again, the specifics bring you in. Friedberger even regularly drops “that’s crazy!” or “I liked that” impressions throughout her lyrics to bring them even closer to the listener. We are right there with her.
Most of the songs here do seem to be looking at a broken relationship. She remembers movies watched (The Girl Who Played With Fire in “Scenes From Bensonhurst” and Footloose in “Inn”), making necklaces from tin cans, getting lost in New York (on both “Owl’s Head Park” and “Roosevelt Island”), getting lost in Los Angeles (“Inn”), I could go on, listing all the moments. All these scenes tie all the songs together.
Musically, the songs have a calmness, especially compared to the intensity of Friedberger’s main band, Fiery Furnaces. There are less riffs, and she utilize mood over Furnaces’ experimentation. Some of the tracks perfectly embody the nostalgia, subtly dropping in some saxophone or a little harmonica or keyboards in just the right way. The music does form a string of moods through its different sections, which certainly matches the string of scenes she sings about.
In many ways, Last Summer is a loose concept album – maybe not in a specific sense, but in looking at some specific events of a time and trying to figure them out. Whether or not they really happened, or are fiction, I do not know. Friedberger does not write from within the memories, but almost always in looking back on them, trying to make sense of what happened. Is this not exactly what people do with their memories? “I thought I’d learn from my mistakes,” Friedberger sings on “My Mistakes,” “Why keep time-traveling if it doesn’t get better the second time around?”almostaghost
My monthly mix of new music is up now. This mix ended up a bit strange, somehow. I’m having a conflicted relationship with 2011 musics, but that doesn’t stop me from having good stuff to share every month!
Also, don’t neglect Mint’s latest cool “since we last spoke” mixes a couple of posts down!- almostaghost