Today, 40 Below Summer:
I discovered 40 Below Summer during a weird project I was doing for about a year, where I’d walk into the CD section of Best Buy (back when that was a place we actually bought music) and buy the weirdest looking CDs I could find at the moment. This one had a weird symbol on the front (which I believe shows up in the video preview) and seemed interesting enough, and it ended up being one of the better CD’s to come from this escapade. The band is still very much a nu-metal band, but they always struck me as a nu-metal band with chops to back it up, and the ability to put together something more complex than a dude screaming into a microphone, as the above shows. They’re very much limited in their ability to use metaphors in songs effectively, but a lot of 2000’s bands are, honestly, and we still kind of enjoyed them anyway, so it’s almost endearing in its own way.
This is one of those rare two-song days. Today, Diablo Swing Orchestra:
I know what you’re thinking if you’re reading this during the first thirty seconds. Keep listening.
Okay, now listen to this one:
The one thing I really love about the modern progression of access to music is that you can always find something interesting if you know eclectic people or if you’re willing to search long enough to find different things. In this case, heavy metal swing music. This is absolutely lovely and I’m astonished that I’d not heard anything from them until a week or so ago, to be honest.
I’ve shared KARA songs with my livestream folks and on my Facebook before, but this one is a bit more interesting, because this song is the first song from the band to feature the new lineup.
This will take a little explaining, so stick with me.
Today, Dope Stars Inc:
J. Rose and I have been going back and forth on recent music discoveries, and this was one that he turned me onto that I’m rather liking. It’s very early electronic heavy, and being that the band is Italian you get the impression that their lyrics are simplistic on purpose, but it’s interesting because the band clearly knows what they’re doing and how best to work within their limitations to make something fun and enjoyable. It’ll never be Top 40 or a multi-Platinum seller or anything, but it’s enjoyable, which is all I really ask for from it.
When people talk about Cher’s kids, the one most people talk about is Chaz Bono, because of his transgender advocacy. Cher’s other kid, Elijah Blue Allman, on the other hand, hasn’t done quite as much, but one thing he has done that I appreciate is the above: founding the band Deadsy, which is about as far, musically, from Sonny and Cher as you can get. A lot of it comes across as goofy experimental darkwave music, and as such, it’s hard to really get into if you’re not really into what the band is trying to do. “Mansion World,” however, is one of those songs that works on its own merits, and it’s accessible almost in spite of itself, so it’s the one I’m sharing today.
Goldfish is the sort of band that makes music I’d almost certainly not appreciate if it weren’t being made by people who seem to be just as nerdy as I am. That’s not to say that I appreciate the music because they’re nerdy; rather, it means that because they’re nerdy, they infect the music with a certain style that’s nerdy while staying within its own genre, and its nerdiness is just right, such that I can enjoy it. It’s an admittedly complex balance, I’ll admit, but it works well and I appreciate it for what it is, which is to say, well, nerdy.
Today, Pharrell Williams:
I love this song, because it’s incredibly simple, cheerful and catchy, and Pharrell Williams is a mighty fine singer. I love this video, however, because it’s fucking ridiculous. The US version is a lot of different people dancing, which is cool, but the Japanese video is a bunch of goofy Japanese people dancing, including stereotypical Japanese Bōsōzoku gangsters (think Mondo from Dangan Ronpa), a motherfucker in a goddamn mascot costume, and fucking Kazuchika Okada and Shinsuke Nakamura.
You need this in your life.
No, shut up.
You NEED this.