Song of the Day

SXSW Song Of The Day: Max Richter – Dream 3 (in the midst of my life)

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Today SXSW released its list of the next batch of performers for this year’s edition. It’s the biggest announcement yet with plenty of noteworthy names on the list, one of the most intriguing of them being Max Richter. The British composer, who among many other accomplishments has written several excellent film and television scores, (shout out to The Leftovers, one of the best things to ever be on TV) will be presenting the North American debut of his 8 hour composition Sleep. A more manageable 10 minute excerpt is presented below.

I don’t really have a clear notion of how such a piece would even work at SouthBy, where set lengths of 20-40 minutes are the norm, but I am intrigued. Maybe it will be more of an installation piece where people would be free to come and go and those that are up for it and have the stamina could stay for the duration, but who knows? Regardless of what form it takes though, this promises to be one of the more unique and interesting bits of programming for this year’s festival.

Song Of The Day: Charlie Daniels Band – The Devil Went Down To Georgia

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Last night something pretty amazing happened. In the midst of a bunch of boring tweets about a football game, country fiddling sensation and one time Murder She Wrote guest star Charlie Daniels tweeted out his distaste for a new Taco Bell ad that blatantly reveals the fast food giant’s true face:

Illuninati confirmed? Should we all be making a “run for the border?” Have all of those double triple crunch wraps and chalupas been part of some sinister plot to place us all under their thrall? I mean a more sinister plot than just stuffing us full of Doritos Locos tacos.

Really, when you think about it though, it should have been obvious to anyone with (all seeing) eyes all along. I mean, who can forget when Taco Bell appointed Jay Z as their CEO? Or that time a few years back when the ghost of Adam Weishaupt himself, founder of the Bavarian Illuminati, appeared at a major music festival’s giant taco shrine stage and vomited 2000 pounds of spiced ground beef onto the crowd, who had conveniently been carefully arranged into a pyramid configuration while the devil himself played not one fiddle, but 666 of them at the same time? The most shocking revelation in that commercial though, is that Taco Bell serves breakfast. Surely a sign of the end times if ever there was one.

Yes, truly, the Illuminati is not a frivolous subject.

Now watch this video taken from an ’80s John Travolta movie:

Song Of The Day: Elbow – Golden Slumbers

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Having already released the Little Fictions album back in February, Elbow have just recently released their second album this year, a Best Of collection.

It’s a time honoured tradition and singer Guy Garvey has noted that “Best Ofs are a good way of introducing new fans to a big back catalogue.” I have to wonder though who exactly it is that they’re hoping to introduce to their catalogue through The Best OF Elbow. Other than completists, longtime fans surely have pretty much everything already and as for new fans, well, they’ve all got the internet and all of the streaming services and/or illegal means to obtain said recordings available at their fingertips. So who is this for? Considering that the main draw on this release is the band’s version of The Beatles’ “Golden Slumbers,” newly recorded for UK department store chain John Lewis’ latest Christmas ad, it’s likely that they’re making a play for the stocking stuffer set with this one. And the completists.

While I may question the need for Best Of/Greatest Hits style collections in today’s music market, there’s no question that Elbow have done the Fab Four justice with their take on the Abbey Road classic. The band have just released a video to accompany the song featuring footage from the Michel Gondry-directed ad along with some behind the scenes stuff. Check it out:

“The Best Of” tracklist:

Standard Version:
Grounds for Divorce
Magnificent (She Says)
Lippy Kids
One Day Like This
The Bones of You
My Sad Captains
Leaders of the Free World
Mirrorball
Fugitive Motel
New York Morning
Great Expectations
The Birds
Scattered Black and Whites
bonus track
Golden Slumbers

Deluxe Version (bonus tracks):

Any Day Now
Fly Boy Blue / Lunette
Weather to Fly
Station Approach
Switching Off
Little Fictions
This Blue World
Kindling (Fickle Flame) featuring John Grant
Newborn
Puncture Repair
The Night Will Always Win
Starlings
The Loneliness of a Tower Crane Driver
Dear Friends

Song Of The Day: Snail Mail – Thinning

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The end of the year is the time when everyone starts compiling their lists of all the best stuff that came out over the past 12 months, but it’s also a great time to catch up on all the stuff you didn’t hear and to delve deeper into things that you heard but never quite took the time to get into. Snail Mail is one such band.

As far as I know, the band, led by 18 year old Lindsey Jordan, didn’t even release anything this year (their Habit EP came out in 2016) but this year is when they first caught my attention, having seen them opening for Priests back in February and catching a song or two in passing during SXSW last March. While they definitely impressed with their live show, I sort of forgot about them for awhile and was only reminded of the band recently via the Tiny Desk Concert they filmed back in September.

“Thinning” is a standout track from the band, exuding a sort of youthful energy while simultaneously sounding kind of bored (I mean that as the best kind of compliment, of course). At times, Jordan bring to mind Land Of Talk’s Liz Powell as well as Mary Timony (of Helium/Wild Flag/Ex hex fame and also Johnson’s guitar teacher). That’s definitely some good company to be in.