Wednesday, January 7, 2015

New Year, New Playlist: 2015

I had a tradition on my first blog, What We Covet, of starting each new year off with a playlist of music I intend to take with me throughout the year. As with the previous lists, the songs were culled from my current collection. Most aren't recent, but they certainly sound good to me, and that's really the goal of any playlist I ever make. They come to you in no particular order. I hope you'll check them out, if you're not already familiar with them. Enjoy!


1) "Crazy in Love," Beyoncé and Jay-Z
Everyone knows this song. It's inescapable, because Bey and Jay are, arguably, the most powerful couple in the world. Even I'm in awe of it; I included a cover version on last year's playlist. The original is the superior cut, of course, thanks in large part to the raucous horns and the beauty of a real couple sharing the mic.

2) "Long Black Road," Electric Light Orchestra
By far, my favorite part of American Hustle is Christan Bale's character Irving Rosenfeld repeatedly referring to a microwave as a "science oven." But David O. Russell's soundtrack is pretty on-point, as well, including this classic rock cruncher from ELO. Jeff Lynne's voice is perfect here, and the production--from the echoes to the bridge--sounds great, especially on the guitar solos. It's fun to blast on your radio while you drive to work.

3) "Turn the Page," Bob Seger
Speaking of classic rock. The version of this fantastic song I love most is the one recorded at Cobo Hall (linked to here). There are few things more Detroit than that, and in spite of being home for some months now, I still feel I need an injection of the Motor City spirit from time to time.

4) "Deeper and Deeper," Madonna
Raise your hand if you're shocked to find that I'm listening to Madonna. Again. And again. And again. This is a track of hers that isn't as subversive as she'd like to believe, but there's a reason why I love it: singing along, at the very top of my lungs, in the car has gotten me through many trips to/from my retail jobs because of its energy and borderline absurdity. Nothing better than the song that helps you survive, am I right?

5) "Quimney Neuquen (Remix)," José Larralde and Chanca Via Circuito
When I binge-watched all five seasons of Breaking Bad last year, I fell in love with this song. It's the kind of thing you should listen to at night, on a lonely dark road, or possibly when you're in that weird space between waking and sleeping and everything feels so very floaty and unreal. The trance it induces can help you focus or sweep you away. Listen to it right now.

6) "Boomerang," Lucy Schwartz
As disappointed as I was in the quality of the fourth season of Arrested Development (seriously, I can't even talk about how they failed to make anustart work for them), this song--appearing at the end of the last episode--stood out. Apparently Lucy Schwartz also sang the "Mr. F" line during the Little Britain episodes, but this is a much better, if less hilarious, use of her talents. Who hasn't felt this way in a relationship? Besides, the music video is totally worth the watch.

7) "Me and My Broken Heart," Rixton
Not to be all hipster about it, but I loved this song before it was cool. And by that, I mean ever since it was available for free on iTunes, which happened before it was big on the radio. For one thing, you have to respect a band that can find the sweet spot between pop and reggae. For another, you have to respect a band that can make such a catchy song on top of that alchemy. Jam out to this any chance you get.

8) "Goody Goody," Tony Bennett and Lady Gaga
You didn't think I would leave my number one lady off the list, did you? No way. Although this is primarily Bennett's song--and the obvious glee he takes in singing to his former paramour is excellent--Lady Gaga's interjections make the song. "I was confused, you know?" she says, like any excuse-making person would, and we experience pleasure right alongside Bennett.

I invite you all to make your own playlist for the coming year, and share it with me if you're feeling confessional!


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