Bryce Rudow likes music. You can send all hatemail to [email protected] and tweet vitriol at him @brycetrudow (or follow him to make him feel more popular while getting access to random new music he doesn’t have the time to write about).
Overloaded by all the “new music” options you keep hearing about? We’re here to help. Here are four songs we think you should fucking know (this week).
- Mariam the Believer – “Invisible Giving” and “The String of Everything”
I have a confession to make…
I have been listening to “Invisible Giving” by Miriam the Believer at least 2 or 3 times a day since I stumbled upon it about a week and a half ago, and I still have no idea what to make of it. I know that I enjoy it. I know that it would qualify in most peoples’ minds as a “good song” (if not a great one), but for the life of me I can’t tell you why.
Is it calming or is it empowering? Is it incredibly modern or distinctly vintage sounding? Is it a human mirror? Do we all hear what we want to hear in it*?
I just don’t know.
But that hasn’t stopped me from continuing to play it, and the other song on her Soundcloud page “The String of Everything,” ad nauseam.
I have however given up any attempt at throwing out my own subjective thoughts about it though, so I figure instad I’ll just throw a lot of objective facts about her at you all and still sound well-informed…
Apparently, Mariam the Believer is actually a woman named Mariam Wallentin who is better known as one half of a Swedish group called Wildbirds & Peacedrums. Her and her husband, who makes up the other half of said Wildbirds, have been working together since 2006, but recently Mariam decided to take a break to work on her own stuff. In an interview with The Line of Best Fit, she claims to have actually written her whole album in less than two weeks, which is really impressive (or bullshit). That album, Blood Donation, was released early last month, and came with a pretty honest, pretty emotional disclaimer from Mariam herself on her Facebook page that you can read here.
I’m currently downloading it as I write this, and while I have no clue whether I’ll be able to wrap my head around it, gauging from how much I like “Invisible Giving” and “The String of Everything,” I’m pretty sure it will be on repeat on my iTunes for a good while whether I understand exactly why I like it or not.
* I severely wish I could have found a clip of Jeff and Blade from the “Origins of Vampire Mythology” episode of Community to link there, but I couldn’t find it on YouTube. All you Community fans, pretend I was saying all that the way Mr. Winger did.
- Museum of Love – “Monotronic” and “Down South”
Last week, I was perusing the Good Book and saw that James Murphy had posted something via LCD Soundsystem’s account. Being one of the many that worship at the altar of Murphy, I immediately clicked to read more and saw an almost unfair recommendation from him about a group called Museum of Love that read more like a coronation:
I mean, let’s face it. You’re James Murphy. You post about a new band and say that their album is “ridiculously beautiful,” that you’re “being swallowed by it,” and that “it’s a really special thing,” and that new band immediately becomes priority #1 for thousands of people. Including myself…
I immediately got to sleuthing and found out that Museum of Love is Pat Mahoney of LCD Soundsystem and Dennis McNany of Juan Maclean, who also produces as Jee Day. Apparently Dennis writes most of the music and Pat is on vocals, and their album which is due in early 2014 is going to feature a few of their mutual friends (I know, I’m giddy too).
Between James Murphy’s blessing and the two songs already out, which sound like their borrowing from David Byrne, David Bowie, and everything in between, I can almost guarantee that this is going to be a record that we’re just heaping and piling praise on come a few months from now. It’s probably in your best interest to get acquainted with them now and spread them to all your friends before they blow up and you lose out on valuable cool points. Thus Murphy has spoken.
- Jose Gonzalez – “Step Out” from The Secret Life of Walter Mitty Soundtrack
Former Guest Writer You Should Fucking Know and current friend since childhood Kwasi Ansu recently posted this song in our sweet Facebook new music group, and as I found myself completely caught up in the bliss of it all, I was reminded of just how great Jose Gonzalez is.
And I’m afraid we’re not talking about that enough.
He’s probably most popular for his beautiful cover of The Knife’s “Heartbeats”— which is used perfectly as the soundtrack to my favorite video on the Internet — but ever since his debut album Veneer was released internationally in 2005 he has consistently been putting out amazing music, either by himself or as part of his many collaborations that range from indie rock to experimental art. If you ask anyone that’s familiar with him about him, they will most likely say that they like him, but how is he not in that next tier up where we feel obligated to mention him when discussing other great soft-spoken or folk-inspired musicians like Iron & Wine, Nick Drake, or even Bon Iver?
Sure, I know that he hasn’t put out a solo album in a while, but his side project Junip has done more than enough to keep us reminded us of his incredible talent, especially if you consider the diverse sonic landscapes he’s been skipping around in lately.
With “Step Out,” Gonzalez’ contribution to the soundtrack for The Secret Life of Walter Mitty, a movie I’m going to make sure I actually see in theaters (which says a lot), he borrows from the more expansive sound of Junip but goes for purely anthemic emotion. While not the soundtrack for the trailer, I could easily see this being the song we think of when we think about this movie later on the same way “Wake Up” is for Where The Wild Things Are.
And depending on how well this movie does, it might just be the catalyst Jose Gonzalez needs to remind the world how great he really is.
- Frank Turner – Tribute to Josh Burdette
So I know this is usually where you get to read better writing than I write from a GUEST WRITER YOU SHOULD FUCKING KNOW, but I wanted to beat the Matrix and change it up this week. Last week at the Electric Factory, Frank Turner played a new song dedicated to recently-deceased DC icon Josh Burdette, and, thank God, someone from the balcony (which is the only place cellphones should be used at a concert) captured it. I think it sums up how a lot of people feel about the big hole left by the big man’s passing. Enjoy.
If you/someone you know is up for the task of writing non-sequitered musical ramblings, feel free to shoot me an email at [email protected], tell me I look pretty, and convince me why you should be a Guest Writer We Should Fucking Know.