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Kevin Morby - "I Have Been To The Mountain"
I'm a little late on this one but damn, I think I just turned into one of the biggest Kevin Morby fans ever, thanks to a fellow Baeble intern… Okay, I'm not the biggest fan ever, but I do have to say that he makes some of the most enjoyable music I've listened to in a while. "I Have Been To The Mountain," off of Morby's 2016 album Singing Saw,
is about finding that spiritual enlightenment we all wish for. The mountain he's singing about symbolizes a place of happiness, potentially a higher being. However, the hopefulness doesn't end with the lyrics -- the frantic strum of the bright acoustic guitar combined with the warm electric, the gospel choir, and uplifting melody all make for a very
Vince Staples - "Love Can Be…"
Vince Staples just dropped Big Fish Theory
last week, which we've been covering extensively
, and this immediately stood out as one of my favorite tracks upon first listen. His experimentation with dance beats is ambitious and it works so well. I'm not the biggest rap head, but give me something I can dance to in addition to a good verse and I will be very content.
St. Vincent - "New York"
My girl is back -- and with a song about my favorite place in the whole world! It's pretty ballsy for Annie Clark to lead her new album with a quiet breakup ballad, but we'd expect nothing less from her. She's never been a predictable one.
Can - "Halleluwah"
It's disgusting how in the groove they are right off the bat. One of the best aspects of krautrock is the lack of limitation—if a group wants to draw something out, feel free! While this is not for everyone, I think it's amazing and this 18:31 is exactly why. Like many Can songs, "Halleluwah" is a long, strange journey, ripe with the dirtiest rhythms.
Freddie Gibbs & Madlib - "Thuggin'"
Freddie Gibbs recently did an Over/Under
with Pitchfork, which was awesome. The Gary, Indiana gangster rapper made an album with Madlib a few years ago, which was excellent, because anything Madlib produces is going to sound good. "Thuggin'" is a particularly exceptional beat, the source of which (Debbie Taylor's "Never Gonna Let Him Know") Madlib puts at the end of the track, which is really cool to hear. Shout out Debbie Taylor!
Vince Staples - "SAMO"
"SAMO" was a bright spot on a really good new album by Vince Staples, Big Fish Theory
. The drawl of the chorus, which features A$AP Rocky, is infectious. Despite being a fairly slow song, the bass is so deep that "SAMO" feels almost heavy. The song isn't terribly complex, but it's really cool which is all you want sometimes.
Vince Staples - "Yeah Right"
Kind of a unanimous decision on this track being the best from his new album. [Ed's Note: Almost every staffer chose a different song off this album this week.] Flume's production with Vince's bars and a guest appearance by Kendrick Lamar can't disappoint.
Built To Spill - "Else"
Feeling a lil contemplative today, but that doesn't have to be a bad thing. A cool rhythm section and introspective lyrics make for a solid 4 minutes.
The Knife - "Full Of Fire"
I revisited this dance track from 2014 the other day, and, as visceral and instinctive as it sounds, it's time-switching percussion establishes a low-key banger. I can't get it out of my head.
Jimi Hendrix - "Little Wing"
One of the greatest guitar songs of all time. I never get sick of it, no matter how many times I've heard people play it to death in guitar stores. Also, I think "Little Wing" is proof of how underrated Hendrix was as a lyricist. Everyone's always so distracted by his amazing skills as a guitarist that they forget how poetic he was. Seriously, he gives you such a strong sense of an entire person with the lines "Well she's walking through the clouds/ with a circus mind that's running ‘round/ Butterflies, and zebras, and rubies, and fairy tales/ That's all she ever thinks about/ riding with the wind."
Frank Zappa - "Apostrophe"
Speaking of great guitar songs, I've also been listening to "Apostrophe" like crazy. Zappa is one of my favorite guitarists of all time, and I've been revisiting some of my favorite tracks of his all week. "Apostrophe" is probably the one I've been blasting in my headphones the most. Jack Bruce, of Cream fame, plays bass on this track, and the interplay between him and Zappa is breathtaking. I just saw Baby Driver
this week (great film, by the way) and after I walked out of the theater, I wanted to listen to music that would make me jam out as I walked down the street, just like Ansel Elgort did in the movie. This was the first song I thought of. Totally jammed out to it all the way home, bobbing my head like a total weirdo. #NoRegrets.
Jeff Buckley - "Lover You Should've Come Over"
One of the most heartbreaking love songs I've ever heard. Buckley's voice, the lyrics, the instrumentation… it's all beautiful. I think this one speaks for itself.
Lorde - "Hard Feelings/Loveless"
It took me a second to get into Melodrama
, but damn. It's so good. Once I actually sat down and listened to the entire thing I ended up really enjoying it. This one song is currently my favorite because of the switch from "Hard Feelings" to "Loveless." It has a nice combination of a pop song that turns into something a little more electronic. And I like that she didn't make two songs out of it. This week I've been listening to it every morning as I pull into Penn Station, and every time it comes on I just involuntarily smile.
Donnie Trumpet and The Social Experiment - "Pass The Vibes"
This is my number one song for driving in a convertible or sitting by the ocean - you know, summer activities. It doesn't sound like any other song on the mixtape Surf
and I think that's what I like about it. Surf
is a great album, but this one's different. It doesn't have that fast-paced rap that some of the other songs have. Instead it gives us a soothing and slow bass line, an almost beach-y feel. Something you'd want to listen to while on vacation, or while you're pretending you're on vacation.
Frank Ocean - "Nights"
I think I only listen to this song a lot because it happens to be on one of the only playlists I have downloaded on Spotify. And the subway is not always reliable when it comes to good cell service. This was probably my favorite song when Blonde