Saturday, December 24, 2011

Cool Music Stuff on the Internet - NPR Christmas, Best Covers of 2011, Death Cab for Cutie, Gotye, The Roots

Christmas from NPR Music
Just in time for Christmas, NPR Music's World Cafe has a Holiday Extravaganza (I love that word) of music and holiday suggestions from Jack Johnson, G. Love, Scott Weiland, and Carol King.  You can listen to the show HERE.

Cover Me Songs Best Covers of 2011
It wouldn't be the end of the year without countless end of the year charts and "best of" lists.  Normally I eschew these kinds of lists (except listener/reader lists), but this is a good one.  Cover Me Songs has come up with their list of the Best Cover Songs of 2011.  It is no secret how and why I love covers.  And this list delivers.  Its an extensive list, however, so here are some I would suggest listening to:
#50 Willie Nelson covers "The Scientist" by Coldplay
#43 Oh Land covers "Bloodbuzz Ohio" by The National
#39 Adele covers "Promise This" by Cheryl Cole
#33 Damien Rice covers "One" by U2 (which I previously wrote about HERE)
#21 Jack White covers "Love is Blindness" by U2 (written about HERE)
#3 Bon Iver covers "I Can't Make You Love Me" by Bonnie Rait

Death Cab visit Jimmy Kimmel
Off one of the best albums of the year in my opinion, Death Cab for Cutie recently stopped by Jimmy Kimmel and performed "Underneath the Sycamore" and "You Are A Tourist".  I have yet to get sick of either of these songs (or any song off Codes and Keys for that matter).  Here's "You Are A Tourist":

The Roots Release Short Film
The Roots released their most recent album, undun, recently (check out my review HERE), which is a story of a young man who is faced with life on the streets, drugs, crime, death and life.  undun is a concept album and The Roots recently released a short film set to some of the songs from the album.  When listening to the album, the listener can create the scenes in their minds- but to see them in black and white brings a whole new level to the visceral feeling of this album.  A profound video that is definitely worth a watch, which you can see (via Pretty Much Amazing)  HERE.

Gotye on KCRW
I am new to Gotye, who is by far the most unique sounding artist I've heard in quite awhile.  I'm still not sure what to make of him and his single with Kimbra, "Somebody I Used to Know"- it leaves me with an unsettled feeling that makes me never want to hear the song again, yet every time I catch it on the radio I find myself unable to turn it off.  The vocals are soft to the point that I want to shake my radio and scream "I can't hear you! Sing louder!" but then turn into an almost yelling cry.  The music itself is unique with heavy xylophone (yes, xylophone) but for some reason, it seems to work.  The song itself is about a breakup, and the lyrics and emotions in the vocals speak to anyone who has ever gone through a breakup, so perhaps this is the draw.  Gotye and Kimba's vocals are so full of emotions that we all feel when we go through this, that it simply comes across as incredibly authentic. Gotye was on KCRW this year and you can hear some of his other music during his session HERE. And here is "Somebody That I Used to Know".  It starts off slow so give the full song a listen and then I'd love to know, what do you think about it?

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