Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Tuesday Turntable 5.26.09

How's it kickin'?
For us here in Denver, it's not kicking too much. We are on our 6th straight day of weary dreary rain and grey skies, definitely not typical for a state that gets 300 days of sunshine a year. To celebrate (or, if it's your style, mourn) the rainy days, both literal and figurative, our turntable this week is slow, sad and stormy. Here follow my most favorite songs to be sad to :-(

"Exit Music (For a Film)" is off Radiohead's multi-platinum OK Computer, and gained even more attention for appearing in Baz Luhrman's William Shakespeare's Romeo + Juliet. In fact, the ponderous ode was written specifically for the end credits, as you can see from the title. Thom Yorke wrote the song to take place the morning after Romeo and Juliet consumated their love; Yorke said regarding "Exit Music," "I couldn't understand why, the morning after they shagged, they didn't just run away. The song is written for two people who should run away before all the bad stuff starts. A personal song."

"Something in the Way" is next, from Nirvana's Nevermind. It can be said to close Nirvana's master work with the same simplicity and cynicism that made the band famous. There is only one verse and a one-line chorus, and the feeling that Kurt Cobain might have fallen asleep while singing this song is an aestethic pretty unique to Nirvana.

"The Ice is Getting Thinner" is one of the best tracks on Death Cab for Cutie's Narrow Stairs. It might just be me, but this song, even from the first time I heard it, has always made me self-reflective, listening to the hollow guitar echos and searching its lyrics for relevance in my own life. Even though the literal meaning of the song is pretty clear, just the sound of it can mean anything the listener needs it to, and goodness knows I've needed this song a couple times since I discovered it.

Jeff Buckley's "Hallelujah" is the most famous cover of Leonard Cohen's original. Sadly, Buckley's track was not released until after his death. This tragedy has, however, made certain the song hasn't lost any of its well-earned acclaim and adds deeper meaning to the beauty Buckley accomplishes on this, his last hit.

"Nude" comes from In Rainbows, Radiohead's newest album. Some great features of this track are the dramatically palm-muted guitar chords, echoing production, and, my absolute favorite part of the song, Thom Yorke's voice as the rest of the band drops out at 2:59, his voice soars over the track in the breathless climax. Seriously, shivers every time.

Don't let these songs make you sad, instead, let them envelop you in to a nice stormy cocoon as you front the literal storms outside.

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