Another birthday has come and gone, and I realize now that one of the best periods of every year is not my actual birthday, but the two weeks that follow it. My family and wife’s family now know that I would rather have new music than 99% of other gift ideas. It isn’t that they aren’t creative in their gift planning. Rather, they try to make me happy, and I truly appreciate that.
During the fortnight after my birthday, I don’t let the iTunes credits, Amazon credits, and cash burn holes in my pocket. I spend time reading about, listening to, and legally purchasing new music.
Here’s what I’ve scored recently, and I’m fairly pleased with everything on my album acquisition list for late July and early August.
- Creaturesque by Throw Me The Statue
- God Help the Girl by God Help The Girl
- Dragonslayer by Sunset Rubdown
- Set ‘Em Wild, Set ‘Em Free by Akron/Family
- Got Nuffin (EP) by Spoon
- Farm by Dinosaur Jr.
- Ambivalence Avenue by Bibio
- Calls & Responses by Memory Cassette
Classify those last two albums under the hottest new summer genre: chill wave, or GorillavsBearcore. If you’re into this sort of thing, read a summary of the sub-genre Carles coined at I Guess I’m Floating or the original Carles post at Hipster Runoff.
I’ve also been cherry-picking some other artists, not all of whom have recent releases. I’ve included some editorial notes too.
- The Eels — always one of those bands that I thought I would like if I ever put in the effort. Their catalog is pretty large, and I’ve enjoyed my time browsing.
- The Magnetic Fields — chalk this up to the single thing that makes The Triangle much cooler than it would be otherwise: Merge Records. They recently celebrated their 20th anniversary, and it inspired me to try out my favorite Merge band that I knew very little about. I’m about 10 deep in 69 Love Songs.
- The Hood Internet — if you like hip-hop and indie rock, you can’t find a better value (free at http://thehoodinternet.com/) than these mash-ups. I’m not exaggerating when I say that some have blown me away. I’m serious. These guys are supreme matchmakers.
Finally, can someone out there explain the appeal of The Very Best’s Warm Heart of Africa. Even though every respectable taste-making music blog/magazine is smitten, I’m afraid I just don’t get it. I’m cool with world music, I like Afro-pop, but I just don’t get it.