I have to hand it to my friend Dave McFadyen, he makes my musical taste feel so utterly pedestrian. In the last few months he has introduced me to three of my favorite albums ever. And it’s stuff that makes me feel so damn smart, like after listening to it I have a license to walk around being indier than thou. Let’s rattle off the list:
- The Long Winters – Putting the Days to Bed. Best song off this album is “Teaspoon.” I really don’t know what it’s about, something to do with being in love with a woman who loves a pilot, and all you can do is turn to a life of robbing banks… it really doesn’t matter. Those horns buffet my soul.
- Andrew Bird – Armchair Apocrypha. One listen to “Plasticities” (which is where they title of this post comes from) makes me feel like falling in love in autumn. But really, it’s one stand out track in an album of stand out tracks. He used to be the violinist for the Squirrel Nut Zippers, and has released plenty of albums over the years as Andrew Bird’s Bowl of Fire, and most recently as just Andrew Bird. His “Bowl of Fire” discography is a lot like the Squirrel Nut Zippers, with him borrowing many of the conventions of early 20th century music. Check out this show on archive.org at Mad City in 1998 for a listen to his previous stylings. He’s pretty dang slick.
- Radiohead – In Rainbows. I have to admit, I just haven’t “got” the last several Radiohead albums, but this one is truly stellar. It’s easily the most accessible album they’ve released in a decade. “Reckoner” reminds me of my favorite songs off of Moby’s Play, but far more beautiful.