Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Songs of the Summer

With September starting tomorrow (where the HELL has summer gone, really?), I thought I'd share a quick list as to what I've been listening to this summer. It's been a good one, music wise, with new albums by Ryan Star and Jimmy Gnecco with releases upcoming this fall by SafetySuit, Josh Groban, and David Cook among others. Here's my quick list of drive with the music down songs to check out.

Ryan Star - Start A Fire
As if there was any doubt I'd start with a Ryan Star song. Or at least include one on here. But this song is amazing. Its sexy, fun, catchy, and is going to be the next single releasing to radio on September 13. There's no way you can stay still while listening to it. And its incredible live.

Ryan Star - 11:59
This song starts out slow but picks up in the middle with the band kicking in - and once it does, its rocking. "Don't let the moment pass us by, put the windows down and drive.." It's really for me, a mantra to live by, a reminder to live in the moment, always.

B.O.B Featuring Hayley Williams - Airplanes
I hadn't really heard this song before mid-June. Then Ryan sang it mashed up with Back of Your Car, so I had to check out the original. However, it really is a great song. Its catchy and it quickly became a favorite to turn up and jam to. Plus I kind of love the video.

Kris Allen - Alright With Me
This is a song that's grown on me. It was never a favorite of mine when I first heard it on the album, but the more I listened to it, the more I loved it. The 'yeah yeah yeah' intro and the crashing guitar chord make the song what it is. I hit repeat on this song more often then anything else on the album.

Katy Perry - California Girls
As is typical with first listen on many of her songs, I hated this at first. Hated it. Changed the station every time it came on in the car. But it kind of worked its way into my head and won't leave me alone. Then I saw the video and I thought it was a great concept. Now this song really is just fun and catchy and everything a great pop song should be. Her new song, Teenage Dream is also immediately catchy, poppy, and fun. Surprisingly, I didn't want to stab my eyes out with a spork when I heard it.

Jimmy Gnecco - Gravity
This is one of my favorite's off of Gnecco's album, The Heart if not for the fact that it's just so happy. It makes me grin like an idiot when I hear it, and I just want to sing along and forget about anything in my life that's not happy for those 4 minutes. 

Seventh Room - Good or Bad
This song by a local Boston band isn't happy go lucky per say, but its intriguing. The droning guitar chords that open the song draw me in immediately and make me stop and listen. There's not many songs like this out there. It's a bit of a throw back to the early 90's grunge rock, but with some modern tweaks to it, which is what makes it so good. It's not out on an album yet, but I've heard it live a few times and its the one song I constantly want to listen to.

So there you have it. What are some of your songs that grabbed you this summer?

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Class of 2014 Beloit College Mindset List

Came across this on a friend's journal and had to share.  It's interesting, kind of frightning, and made me feel old. What do you all think?

Beloit College in Wisconsin comes out every year with their annual Mindset List. The list was developed by an English professor and the college's public affaris director, and its purpose is to help professors "craft lesson plans that are more meaningful" and "to remind teachers that cultural references familiar to them might draw blank stares" from this fall's incoming freshman, most of whom were born in 1992.

Direct from the Beloit website  I present:

The Beloit College Mindset List for the Class of 2014

Most students entering college for the first time this fall—the Class of 2014—were born in 1992. For these students, Benny Hill, Sam Kinison, Sam Walton, Bert Parks and Tony Perkins have always been dead.

Tuesday, August 3, 2010

Ryan Star - 11:59 - First Reaction

The day that we've all been waiting for is here - the much anticipated 11:59 from Ryan Star. I have to preface this by saying that I have heard about 90% of what is on the album already, thanks to the EP and also to seeing Ryan live a bunch over the last year. So I've been familiar with it. But what I wasn't familiar with was the new mixes that we got on a few songs. And I was so excited to see that We Might Fall and Losing Your Memory from Songs from the Eye of an Elephant made it on. And I really love the new arrangements on them.

Hands down, the most powerful track on the album is We Might Fall. I love the simplicity of it with just the piano, and then the drums kicking in later. I love the backing vocal. The title track, 11:59, I  knew was going to make me cry last night. And it absolutely did. It rips my heart out and its really truly a reminder to live in the moment and to make the most of it all.  Brand New Day, Right Now, and This Could Be the Year have been my mantra songs for a long time, so its nice to hear Brand New Day and Right Now start this album off in the best possible way. And what to say about Last Train Home - that song struck a chord with me the first time I heard it - and I can't ever let it go. It's passionate. And beautiful. That song right into Breathe is a seamless transition, and as a whole, this album is laid out perfectly.