Notes, August 2020 Edition

Hello everyone! I have some music I’d like to share with you. As usual – no agenda, no theme, nothing but music I like and think you might, too.

Violent Femmes, by Violent Femmes. The debut, eponymous album by this stripped-down punk band is absolutely iconic. This is high-school angst at its finest (quite literally, as most of the songs were written while Gordon Gano was still in high school), and in the same way that you can’t ever really recapture that spark, the band never really did better than this. But it doesn’t matter, because they immortalized it with this album, and you can go listen when you want to feel that way too.

Fish Outta Water, by Karen Lovely. This is the most recent album by Lovely, who has been releasing albums for about a decade. This was my first exposure to her music, though, and I only recently heard of her. I’ve been blown away though, and Fish Outta Water has been on heavy rotation. “Next Time” in particular is such a fantastic song, though the whole album cooks.

Red of Tooth and Claw, by Murder By Death. These guys are so weird and cool. I heard of them years ago when I decided one night to send out a mass text message to everyone in my phone asking them what they were listening to. This was one of the responses and it’s super, super cool. They’re a little Johnny Cash, a little Jim Croce, a little Bobby Fuller, but all with more modern indie rock vibes. Modern cowboy music. I like it a lot, and it’s just so different that the band stays really interesting. Listening to this album is like watching a good movie.

Cage The Elephant, by Cage The Elephant. Some punk/alternative takes itself WAY too seriously, and I love that Cage the Elephant isn’t like that. They’re like Rage Against The Machine but having more fun. They’ve got fantastic hooks and this album is incredibly fun to listen to. The band members were all blue-collar everymen before their music careers and it shows in the subject matter of their songs – extremely relatable, and able to get you pumped even for a mundane day.

Comfort Eagle, by Cake. Cake is one of my favorite bands, but their album structure has always been a little off to me. I have every album, and there’s something to love on every one – but at the same time, I don’t think they’ve ever released a “no skips” album where every song is outstanding. Their total library therefore has an incredible volume of great songs, but on my music playlists they’re pretty curated. That being said, Comfort Eagle might have the best ratio of fantastic songs to skips out of their discography, so if you’re looking for an introduction to this fantastic band this is a great place to start.

Enjoy some music, everyone! As always, tell me what you’re listening to, and be grateful for every second.

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