I could have sworn I had already mentioned something about this song or band or anything. However, it appears I have not. Helena might be one of the most emotionally challenging songs I have come across. I can never decide how to feel about the singer because every time I listen to the song I find a new perspective and hear another line that has slipped through the cracks. But I do know one thing, I can listen to this song on repeat. As Chris Thile starts out slow with only soft mandolin speaking of the dilemma he’s in, I pity him. I always fall for it. He’s upset because Helena deceived him into thinking that it was just a game of sorts and that his situation could be better without her or his girlfriend. What always surprises me is when the switch is flipped and the singer becomes ultra douche, boasting that “guys like me, never sleep alone.” Regardless of his “douche” level, I still can’t help screaming out “I’ll always be just fine” as the drums burst in and the song hits a melodic and lyrical crescendo of awe. I feel every ounce of Thile’s grief and anger and pity and hurt. Every step of the way I feel it right alongside him. This song consumes me when I listen to it and I cannot express sufficiently the gravity it holds. Please give it a play. If the sheer talent of Thile on the mandolin doesn’t enchant you then the lyrics are sure to.
Attention all: The Mountain Goats have recently released a new single that is not only amazing, but will be on their new CD, ALL ETERNALS DECK, due out March 26 from Merge Records. Their new single, Damn These Vampires, is amazing. Maybe it’s my soft spot for John Darnielle, or maybe it’s the fact that the lyrics are hauntingly intriguing, but either way I am in love. I heard about this song approximately 24 hours ago and think I have listened to it at least that many times. I anxiously wait for the album so I can bask in it’s gloriousness. I suppose that is all, I just cannot contain myself.
“I’ll be your coffeemate at the break of dawn. I’ll be your rook and your bishop and your pawn, I’ll be the ground that you’ve been walking on. Of course I know you need some time to grow. I’ll be your lake if you are my skipping stone.”—
Andrew Jackson Jihad, Skipping Stone
If someone said this to me, I think my heart would melt.
Something about the harmony of voices and the subtle rhythm of the guitar gives me shivers when I listen to this song. Not only are each of these women’s voices beautiful, but they mesh them together seamlessly. Simply put: I am envious of their extraordinaire talent.
The Return Flavor(s): Only Way to be Alone by Good Old War
Astounding. Amazing. Awing. This album, though probably separately cited else where throughout this blog, is the epitome of the preceding adjectives. I can listen to the songs on this album over and over again. The beautiful harmonies and catching lyrics are just enough to keep each song playing until the last second. As a three piece band, Good Old War meshes their voices and melodies together to create the seamless product streaming through the speakers. I wish I could find the words to fully explain my absolute adoration of this album. It’s an A+ and I challenge anyone to listen and argue otherwise. Check it out. It speaks to the soul and melts the heart. I only wish I had come up with their phrases when I needed them most.
In Baltimore, two artists collaborated in 2008 to write a song about Baltimore. Sponsored by a local radio station, the two, Caleb Stine and Saleem, were charged to write one song, with a complete stranger. Coming from two very different musical backgrounds, the collaboration developed into a 10 track album. Outgrown These Walls is a fascinating fusion of styles. I don’t know if it’s the seamless relationship between chord progressions and lyrics or the undeniable heart strokes the two artists induce. Either way, this album is spectacular. And as a bonus, you can listen to all of Caleb Stine’s music for free on his website because he disregards money. Check it and enjoy.