Huzzah! The third installment!#80: “WATER” by BRAD PAISLEY.
“Grab your swimming trunks, ice up that old Igloo, and drive until the map turns blue…” All I really need, this time of year, is to not be driving home in an ugly snowstorm with this Brad Paisley song stuck in my head. Don’t get me wrong – I love this song. But in the middle of this Wisconsin blizzard, it hurts.
#79: “FOR THE SUMMER” by RAY LaMONTAGNE & THE PARIAH DOGS.
This is the point in the road trip where it dawns on you that you’re never going to actually get to your where you’re going no matter how long you keep driving, so you pull off to the shoulder and have yourself a good cry. Until that State Trooper stops by and tells you to move along. At which point you, y’know, move along.
#78: “LITTLE WHITE CHURCH” by LITTLE BIG TOWN.
This is exactly what I would expect an Alabama weddin’ would look like. Huzzah for the gleeful perpetuation of stereotypes by the stereotyped. (Did I mention my huge collection of Broadway cast albums? It’s HUGE. It’s bigger than Cher, even.) Also: If you squint your eyes real hard, Little Big Town looks exactly like ABBA.
#77: “SHINE A LIGHT” by McFLY featuring TAIO CRUZ.
Still teenagers when their debut album hit #1 in the UK in 2004, McFly were a boy band more Bay City Rollers than Backstreet Boys, their songs owing more to Big Star and the Beatles than Max Martin and Dr. Luke. Things have changed. Their latest, co-written with reigning king of android pop Taio Cruz (who guests here on vocals) sounds more like a bid to become the UK’s answer to Maroon 5. And it’s awesome. And the video has lots of shiny stuff.
#76: “DO-WAH-DOO” by KATE NASH.
The retro-pop lament of the nice girl. Literate and lonely, she holds no illusions about that “other” girl that all the boys think is so sweet. “Everybody thinks that she’s a lady. But I don’t. I think that girl’s shady.” Boys can be so dumb. First of all: Hurray for in-flight choreography! But wait – so Kate’s crushing on a boy who’s a flight attendant? Err… okay.
#75: “ONE LIFE STAND” by HOT CHIP.
This is a band I should have loved from the start – five dorky British guys with synthesizers and an abiding devotion to the music of Devo – but they didn’t win me over until the release of their 5th album earlier this year. This is the title track from that album One Life Stand. And of all the LPs I picked up this year, it’s probably the one that’s logged the most mileage on my turntable: a collection of sincerely dorky and supremely dance-able songs about marriage and family.
Hot Chip – One Life Stand
Uploaded by EMI_Music. – See the latest featured music videos. #74: “PRAYIN'” by PLAN B.
The provocative British rapper transformed himself into an old-school soul singer for his latest album, an operatic R&B concept record about love, betrayal, crime and punishment. And he put some amazing visuals out to go along with it. The album’s called The Defamation of Strickland Banks, and Plan B has talked about putting together a feature film around it, building it out of the videos for the album’s songs. And from what I’ve seen so far, Plan B’s videos kick the asses of Ne-Yo’s and Kanye’s latest excursions into grandiose short-filmmaking.
#73: “THE HOUSE THAT BUILT ME” by MIRANDA LAMBERT.
“If I could just come in, I swear I’ll leave… won’t take nothing but a memory from the house that built me.” Another fine country tearjerker.
#72: “NIGHT & DAY” by CHIEF.
The sound of the band Chief falls roughly halfway between Eagles and the Church (just down the block from Fleet Foxes), 70s-style arena rock melodies, layers upon layers of guitars and other strings, and gorgeous four-part harmonies. The video’s great too, a sort of baroque dinner theater cabaret (with stylized stage violence!)
#71: “BETTER THAN TODAY” by KYLIE MINOGUE.
For the third single from her awesome latest album Aphrodite, the international superstar songstress comes down with a severe case of Pac Man Fever. And it’s drivin’ me crazy. Also, I’m going out of my mind. (In a good way.)
Next time around: The recession comes to hip-hop. And R&B. And indie rock.