December 16, 2007

Maybe Next Time

Future Favorites. 100 Words.
Albums Too Recent to Rank Just Yet

1. Eisley - Room Noises

“What are you into? What do you listen to?” (Meaningless getting-to-know-you chatter.)

“Oh, you know, a little bit of everything.” (Canonical bands and genres and opinions. Everything unimpeachably cool.)

But let me sing the catchy truth: My one-word answer would have to be “Eisley,” whose whimsical tunefulness is now my favorite sound. Or else I’d play “Golly Sandra” on repeat, letting the magic speak for itself: Melody, harmony, lushness, perfection. The cutest little stutter at the start of the verse. Coldplay fronted by teenage girls.

As amazing as they were as kids, it’s scary to imagine how awesome they’ll become.

2. Once Soundtrack

Yes, I know I’m repeating myself. But how many times can you say it, and mean it? Everything about this project rings true. This movie, this music, changed my life. (Would you believe it bettered me, at least?) The music I’ve wanted to write my whole life, as heard in a movie I’ve wanted to live, Once inspired me never to quit: writing, singing, dreaming, living. Repeating myself, if that’s what it takes, to force my fate to get here already. I’ll play my songs and listen for yours, and maybe, one day, we’ll sing them together. Surely, you understand.

3. Brandi Carlile - Brandi Carlile

To me, her music feels like America: hopeful, defiant, worth getting lost in. To others, I guess, it feels like VH1, or maybe even CMT: rootsy, folksy, not worth defending, which means I have to proselytize harder, and sing its praises until I’m hoarse. It’s a belief I simply have to share, an ideal much greater than I can explain, a mixtape track you need to hear. It’s raw and real, perhaps too much. It’s not a trick of her down-home production. So far, I’ve only converted two friends – just as a friend converted me. Still, I have to try.

4. KT Tunstall - Eye to the Telescope

I frequently talk about growing out of rock, a process that began, in earnest, ten years ago. Still, on the eve of my high school reunion, I sometimes feign shock at how much I’ve changed, or really, how seldom I listen to dudes. Instead, all the time, I listen to women: Tori, Aimee, and now, KT Tunstall, who sells her words and never herself, even though her sexy growl could talk me into anything. The sexiest thing is how fiercely she plays, pounding her guitar like a washtub bass, layering her chords like storm clouds coming in. Actually, she rocks.

5. Death Cab For Cutie - Plans

A group of guys I view as peers, Death Cab makes music to pine over girls to. Offering insights on life and love, their music says more than I would ever dare. For pensive, well-read, sad-sack dudes, the lyrics and sounds of these songs provide solace, a chance to commiserate without getting messy, or otherwise leaving my cozy apartment. Or otherwise dealing with living, breathing people. I joined the Death Cab fan club late, long after Adam Brody exposed them, but now I can’t picture a life without Death Cab, or a band so great with such a stupid name.