Mental Health Awareness Month

Ohio natives The Black Keys are set to release their first album in over five years, after taking an unexpected hiatus. The band started to crumble in 2015 after their drummer, Patrick Carney, suffered a shoulder injury while swimming in the ocean that left it dislocated. A few months later when the band had anticipated that he was going to be recovered they cancelled their tour. He had developed an infection in his shoulder and was suffering from “Frozen Shoulder” and was unable to play. He says that all the trials with his shoulder left him with PTSD and tanked his relationships with his bandmates. They weren’t communicating effectively and started to splinter. Until recently when they began to work together again and re-build their friendship and trust. There newest music video addresses the tension that was in the band the last five years and depicts them going to therapy to work on their relationship.

It was actually during the hiatus doing solo work and collaborations with other musicians that Patrick met his wife, Michelle Branch, while he fell in love recording an album with her. Although The Black Keys have been through some struggles the past five years, I don’t know that they would change it with things finally looking promising again with their singles climbing the charts and their personal lives more settled.


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Unwell

I’m not crazy, I’m just a little impaired
I know right now you don’t care
But soon enough you’re gonna think of me
And how I used to be
— Matchbox Twenty

Hate Song For Brains

I hate my brain
Because the things I think sometimes are so
Judgmental and lame
I’ve got everything I want
Except my set of expectations
Won’t stay the same
— AJJ

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Same Logic/Teeth

Don’t need to know where you come from
If you don’t know where you belong
So how’s it feel to walk around, like you’re some sort of freak
You’re just an actor, but now they caught you
A shade of what you used to be
— Brand New

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You Never Knew My Mind

I know you feel the way I change
But you can’t change the way I feel
Sometimes I’m a stranger to you
— Chris Cornell

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Mental Health Awareness Month

A year ago when I first started writing about Mental Health, the lead singer of a band I loved, Scott Hutchinson, of Frightened Rabbit, killed himself. He was open about his mental health challenges both in his lyrics and and with his commitment to mental health causes. The band name itself Frightened Rabbit is a nickname that his mother gave him as a child as he often struggled with overwhelming anxiety. In his memory his family has started a mental health charity as part of his legacy. The charity based out of his native Scotland is called Tiny Changes and it hopes to make a difference in the lives of children and young people.


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I Wish I Was Sober

I can’t un-sink the things I’ve sunk
Still not giving up, though I wish that I was sober
— Frightened Rabbit

Not So Body Posi After All

Some day I might lose all this weight
But I will carry it wherever I go
And there will always be a part of me that hates this body
Because I carry it wherever I go
— Sledding With Tigers

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The Needle and the Damage Done

I hit the city and I lost my band
I watched the needle take another man
Gone, gone, the damage done
— Neil Young

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Second Letter from St. Julien

I let my anxieties overwhelm me
Tell me, why am I blessed with this curse?
— Sorority Noise

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Mental Health Awareness Month

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Last week Britney Spears was released from the mental health facility that she checked her self into spurred on by anxiety surrounding her father’s failing health. She spent about a month in the facility, which led some fans to speculate rumors that she was being controlled by someone and that she had been locked away against her will. There we nothing to those rumors, Britney is just more aware of her mental health then she used to be then when she had a well publicized crisis in 2008. Sources close to her stated that “She has come such a long way. She's had years of therapy and care, and this time, she knew the signs when she needed help. With the support of her boyfriend and her father she made the decision to get help and she's very proud of that." Remember to leave Britney alone, she is primarily focused on raising her two kids and is doing really well after her release and is excited to get back with her family and into her routine.


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From Here to Utopia

As I throw the cotton into the spoon, draw up into the syringe
I’ll know just what he means until I hit a vein
But after that I won’t have to bother with knowing who I am
For a while at least
— Pat The Bunny

Hopefulessness

Your vulnerability
Stronger than it seems
You know it’s okay to have a bad day
— Courtney Barnett

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Ghosting

Tracing my anxiety
But I can’t make out the path I draw
Embracing my sobriety
But it doesn’t have a thing to do with how I live
— Emily Reo

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Dear Insecurity

Dear insecurity
When you gonna take your hands off me?
When you ever gonna let me be
Proud of who I am?
— Gnash

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Take me to CHVRCH

The band CHVRCHES released a statement about an artist they had collaborated with choosing to next work with serial abuser Chris Brown “We like and respect Mello as a person but working with people who are predators and abusers enables, excuses and ultimately tacitly endorses that behavior. That is not something we can or will stand behind”. It is good to see some artists taking a stand against abusers in the industry. Chris Brown responded in a way that highlights his attitude towards women; “BUNCH OF LOSERS. these are the type of people I wish walked in front of a speeding bus full of mental patients.”

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Speaking of huge pieces of shit, a woman who was caught dumping puppies into a dumpster at Coachella has since been arrested after police raided her home and found 38 dogs living in terrible conditions of filth. She looks like she has already been cursed by a witch for being super evil as penance for her crimes, but some jail-time would be nice too.


Album of The  Week

The Crane Wife - The Decemberists (2006)

There’s a bend in the wind and it rakes at my heart
There is blood in the thread and it rakes at my heart
— The Crane Wife 1 & 2
When we arrive
Sons & daughters
We’ll make our homes on the water
— Sons & Daughters

This album is named after a Japanese folktale in which a man finds a crane outside with an arrow in it, he proceeds to nurse the crane back to life and releases it. Later a beautiful woman appears on his doorstep whom he quickly falls in love with and marries. When they become desperate for money, his wife offers to weave clothes out of silk to sell at the market, but only if he promises to never watch her making the clothes. The become comfortable from selling the silks, but he gets greedy and pushes her to sell more and more ignoring her declining health. One day he gets curious and peeks at her making the clothes and sees a crane at the loom weaving its own feathers into the silks, when the crane spots him it flies away and never returns.


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Best New Track: Younger

Moment close at hand
Half of you will never understand
And it doesn’t really matter
— The Mountain Goats

Halah

Before I close the door I
Need to hear you say goodbye
Baby won’t you change your mind?
— Mazzy Star

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Haze

Looking all around for someone new
Up and down and right in front of you
— Angelo De Augustine

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I Love You More Than Words Can Say

Why can’t you understand
I love you more than words can say
— Karen Dalton

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St. Sleater

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St. Vincent and Carrie Brownstein (of Sleater-Kinney & Portlandia) are working together on the new Sleater-Kinney album their first since their reunion in 2015. They are also working on a short film together where they plan on playing exaggerated versions of themselves.


Album of The  Week

Laid - James (1993)

We made you feel the way you are is wrong
We made you what you are
You are afraid
— Dream Thrum
My therapist said not to see you no more
She said you’re like a disease without any cure
— Laid

After originally being named Venereal and the Diseases, and switching names several more times the group finally settled on James. I’m thinking it is possible sticking with the name Venereal and the Diseases would have hurt their chances at major success. This album was a collaboration with Brian Eno, apart from the song One of the Three which Eno didn’t like so they waited until he wasn’t around to record it and add it to the record.


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Best New Track: In The End

Ain’t it strange
When everything you wanted
Was nothing that you wanted
In the end
— The Cranberries

Black Angel

He’s turning old, he shall never return
Sail on to the eternal reward
— The Cult

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Brothers on a Hotel Bed

Cause I’m not who I used to be
No longer easy on the eyes but these wrinkles masterfully disguise
The youthful boy below
— Death Cab For Cutie

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Just Like Heaven

And found myself alone, alone
Alone above a raging sea
That stole the only girl I loved
And drowned her deep inside of me
— The Cure

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Back in Black

Brian Johnson has announced that he will tour with AC/DC again taking over for Axl Rose who had been filling in for him. Johnson had to quit the band due to issues with hearing loss (who knows how that happened). It is good to see Brain back to doing what he loves although it’s unclear whether his hearing has actually improved or he just decided to do it anyway.


Album of The  Week

I Could Live in Hope - Low (1994)

If you’re hearing screams
Come back child, come back
— Words
If you see my daughter
Don’t tell her I’m scared
— Fear

Their debut album is the perfect track to read a book to, with subtle tones and sparse lyrics with fragile harmonies. Low manages to have each one of their albums be unique but each one also has a calming energy to it. I highly recommend putting this album on while you are working on something or even if you are trying to fall asleep.


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Best New Track: Borderline

Will I be known and loved?
Is there one that I trust?
— Tame Impala

Reflektor

Now, the signals we send, are deflected again
We’re so connected, but are we even friends?
— Arcade Fire

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Lauren Marie

I might never get my arms around you but that doesn’t mean that I won’t try
— Girls

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The Gospel Song

And I have found a flower that is growin in the forest
And we talked by the hour
Oh we were not lovers, but I loved you
— Frazey Ford

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KFC JFC

This new trend of brands trying to be cool hopefully ends soon as the attempts are getting more and more embarrassing. KFC tried to have a Colonel Sanders DJ at an EDM festival last week and the results were horrific.


Album of The  Week

Funeral - Arcade Fire (2004)

If you still want me, please forgive me
The crown of love has fallen from me
— Crown of Love
I like the peace
In the backseat
I don’t have to drive
I don’t have to speak
— In The Backseat

Their debut album named after several members of the band had close family members die became an instant success. Despite many hiccups in production including forgetting to turn on microphones which they ended up for the most part leaving in the album. The song Haiti was recorded in Regine’s bathroom in the dark because she didn’t feel comfortable recording it in the studio at the time because it was so personal for her. You can actually hear her press stop on the tape recorder in the middle of the song.


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Best New Track: Wake Me When It’s Over

Out of your sight
The snow on the peak was just unbearably white
— Vampire Weekend

Kids

Living out the back of my ‘97 Camry
Wondering how the hell I got myself into this
— PUP

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The Silence

Little girl, you are cursed by my ancestry
There is nothing but darkness and agony
— Manchester Orchestra

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Far Side Banks of Jordan

I believe my steps are growing wearier each day
Still I’ve got another journey on my mind
— Johnny Cash & June Carter

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Curing Music

The Cure got rightfully inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame this weekend and Robert Smith was about as excited as you think he would be about it. They are also planning a “Dark, incredibly intense” new album for release on Halloween this year.


Album of The  Week

Begin to Hope - Regina Spektor (2006)

You are my sweetest downfall
I loved you first, I loved you first
— Samson
I must go on standing
I’m not my own, it’s not my choice
— Après Moi

Regina Spektor’s family moved away from Moscow when she was 7 to escape persecution as Jews in Russia. She would end up in the Bronx by the age of 9 but picked up multiple languages and uses some of them in her music. This was her fourth album and her first major hit with Fidelity being used in TV shows such as Grey’s Anatomy.


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Best New Track: Wake Me When It’s Over

Trying to exist
Trying not to scream
How it does persist
Entrapped inside a dream
— The Cranberries

Don’t Know Why

My heart is drenched in wine
But you’ll be on my mind
Forever
— Norah Jones

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From The Fourth

You were talking so close I could see and feel your breath
You smiled and told me that cure was death
— Leif Vollbekk

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Life Moves On

Life moves on
The way life does
But some things are prettier
The way life was
— Finneas

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Blame The Victims

Barbara Streisand managed to find time in her week to be able to defend Michael Jackson, not in the usual route of denying the allegations against him. She decided to add her own flare by saying she believed the two victims in the recent documentary but added that they seemed “Thrilled” to be there and that Jackson’s “sexual needs were his sexual needs”. It is nice she managed to acknowledge Jackson’s sexual needs, at the expense of ignoring the boys needs to not be raped. She added that the rape “didn’t kill them”. So that is the level a pop star would need to stoop to in order for Barbra to not blame the victims and their parents. Not to be outdone, Diana Ross jumped in as well stating “I believe and trust that Michael Jackson was and is A magnificent incredible force to me and to many others.”


Album of The  Week

Lungs - Florence and the Machine (2003)

There’s a drumming noise inside my head
That starts when you’re around
I swear that you could hear it
It makes such an almighty sound
— Drumming Sound
I was a heavy heart to carry
My beloved was weighed down
— Heavy in Your Arms

Florence Welch bounced around with different musical styles as she even considered making rap music, it wasn’t until she teamed up with her childhood friend Isabella Summers that she found her style. Her debut album inspired by the ending of a recent relationship was an instant success. The heavy drums often played by Florence herself throughout the album are intended to feel like a heartbeat pulsing throughout the album.


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Best New Track: Buffoon

Which direction is the safest to take
— The Murlocs

Patience

Has it really been that long?
Did I count the days wrong?
— Tame Impala

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A Satisfactory World for Reasonable People

Tease me, I won’t tell them that you’re sweet
Easy, nothing matters in a dream
— Pity Sex

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The Official Ironman Rally Song

To dine alone
To build a private zone
— Guided By Voices

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Healthcare Horror

Dick Dale, the King of Surf Rock, has passed at 78 after dealing with a litany of health issues including rectal cancer, diabetes, and damaged vertebrae. He continued to tour up until his death, but not for the love of music, but instead to try to pay his insane medical bills. He said “I can’t stop touring because I will die… Physically and literally, I will die”. He needed to pay over $3,000 a month in medical bills on top of his insurance so he basically tortured himself touring across the country with the help of his wife who has MS. So he is definitely in a better place now, and you will be too once you listen to his biggest hit that you will most likely recognize from Pulp Fiction.


Album of The  Week

Yankee Hotel Foxtrot - Wilco (2001)

Cheer up, honey, I hope you can
There is something wrong with me
— Radio Cure
I’ll be around
You were right about the stars
Each one is a setting sun
— Jesus Etc.

After being shelved for over a year until the band was able to buy the rights to their fourth album back from the record company this album became Wilco’s best seller. The band refused to change the album at the request of Warner Brothers, and I think fans of the album all appreciate the bands loyalty to their sound and would say it is worth the wait. It is always good to have large corporations making decisions about how art should be created and have the ability to suppress art it if it doesn’t meet their expectations.


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Best New Track: You Had Your Soul With You

I have owed it to my heart, every word I’ve said
You have no idea how hard I died when you left
— The National

Miserlou


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Apple Tree Girl

With a smile you say the world is doomed
If it’s true then let me hold you
— Tancred

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Waiting

Waiting for this life to change seems like it’s taking me forever
And I can’t hold on. This life is breaking
— The Red Jumpsuit Apparatus

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Never Never Land

A new documentary is out on HBO shedding light on the abusive relationships that Michael Jackson had with underage boys. The lengths that he would go to in order to alienate and separate these boys from their parents and the outside world is truly disgusting. Clearly a victim of abuse himself, it is sad that Jackson had so many enablers around him that didn’t try to stop this from happening.


Album of The  Week

Hissing Fauna, Are You the Destroyer? - Of Montreal (2007)

I’m in a crisis, I need help
Come on mood shift, shift back to good again
— Heimdalsgate Like a Promethean Curse
It’s so embarrassing to need someone like I do you
How can I explain?
I need you here and not here too
— The Past Is a Grotesque Animal

An extremely weird band with an eccentric leader and over the top live shows that only really took off on the precipice of their own downfall. This album is the one that took off and became big enough for the band to start being commercially successful. However, this album is largely about the bands downfall as the lead singer and his wife who played bass were split up with her living with their sun in Norway. This album was created out of the pain of that separation as the band imploded. They decided to give the relationship and the band another try and stared an over the top adventure and tours together.


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Best New Track: You Don’t Need a God

It can be one word
Or the smallest thing that only I see
It’s like lightning
And it changed the way I feel
— Dido

Griptide

I’m going to hold you now
‘Till I can’t
— Barborossa

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Takes So Much

You can leave all of your failure behind
Take it out
Take it out
Take it out on me baby
— Waxahatchee

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Water

Put the pieces in there, watch them disappear
Worthless to be able, it is lost in the sound
Extricate the battle by just saying nothing
Got to be more careful of this Hell, of this Hell
— Yowler

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Creeps be Creeping

I almost brought up when I wrote about Phoebe Bridgers how her relationship with a much older Ryan Adams struck me as weird given their relative ages and positions in the music industry. It hasn’t even taken a few weeks for it to come out that this is a habit of Adam’s who is now facing allegations from several women and young girls who claim that he has manipulated them and sent inappropriate messages to minors. His upcoming tour has been canceled ahead of the scandal. He of course denies the allegations and such through his lawyer.


Album of The  Week

Static - Cults (2013)

You and me always forever
We could stay alone together
You and me always forever
Say you’ll stay, never be severed
— Always Forever
But I should’ve took the high road
Now it’s such a long way back
— High Road

The only Cults I would recommend you listen to is this band. This fun upbeat record is likely to put you in a better mood. The two lead vocalists and founding members of the band actually broke up as a couple while making this record. The band still preforms together and puts out new records which means they practice what they preach with their song High Road, a little more so than their song Always Forever.


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Best New Track: No Halo

When I was a boy
No rooftop on my joy
— Kevin Morby

Boyfriend

You came to me for entropy
And I gave you all I had
— Marika Hackman

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Mountains O’ Things

The life I’ve always wanted
I guess I’ll never have
I’ll be working for somebody else
Until I’m in my grave
— Tracy Chapman

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Driving Down to L.A.

I’ve got big dreams in my mind
I would give up my whole life for that feelin’
— Ezra Furman

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Oscars

Bohemian Rhapsody won four Oscars last night despite being directed by a pedophile and sex criminal, awkward throughout, and whitewashing over the fact that Freddy Mercury was gay. I can’t wait until my beloved David Bowie has a Biopic directed by Roman Polanski, probably starring Benedict Cumberbatch, and will have him as a straight American man.


Album of The  Week

No Angel - Dido (1999)

And I won’t go
I won’t sleep
And I can’t breathe
Until you’re resting here with me
— Here With Me
And I want to thank you
For giving me the best day of my life
Oh, just to be with you
Is having the best day of my life
— Thank You

Somehow Thank You was the third single from this album to be released, I don’t know how anyone would rank that song as the third best on this album. After the release of Thank You as a single is when this album really took off. It was also used on Eminem’s massive Marshall Mathers LP hit Stan which brought the song to a whole new audience and had it featured on two groundbreaking albums. It was this song that took her out of two years spent playing small bars and restaurants waiting for a record label to promise to release her music if she made the full album.


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Best New Track: Prom Night

They locked in an embrace they learned from a film
— Drenge

Oh, It Had to be You

Its all I give
Watch it as I spend my time on all I give
Empty on weakness
We’re dancing to a fire thats is beneath us
— Black Foxxes

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Gives You Hell

And truth be told, I miss you
And truth be told, I’m lying
— All-American Rejects

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Level

Can I change my mind if I feel it
Will you change your mind if I want
— Our Girl

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How to Copy

Meghan Trainer released a Valentine’s Day press release that has some of the weirdest and most cringe-worthy copy I have ever seen. Although I am tempted to start writing this newsletter like this from now on:

“Valentine’s Day is around the corner, and whether you’re planning on smashing bae’s junk to smithereens or making out with a pint of Phish Food, you need some fresh Valentine’s Day bops to get you in the mood for L♡VE. And MEGHAN TRAINOR has got you covered with her new EP, THE LOVE TRAIN [Epic Records.]

“You know you want it. And you can freakin’ get it b*tch. On all digital platforms right HERE.

 “Meghan’s seducing your ears this V-Day, and you know she knows a thing or two about romance. Unless your phone’s been broken for a hot minute, you know that Meghan just got married to the ginger from Spy Kids, and trust when we say, girl is feeling the love. She took a break from her busy schedule to record some fire tracks in Los Angeles alongside frequent collaborators and producers Andrew Wells [5SOS, Fall Out Boy, Jason Mraz], J KASH (Maroon 5, Charlie Puth, Kesha) and Tyler Johnson [Harry Styles, CAM].

 “We know you want to hear songs about all the hot newlywed sex Meghan and Daryl Sa-BAE-ra are having (did you see what we did there?). Which is why you’ll love the banging’ single “All The Ways.” Billboard was wet for “All The Ways,” calling it “another fun, danceable track to fall in love with.” And would Billboard lie to you, girl?

“But perhaps the piece de resistance (that’s French for “Wig Snatch”) is “Marry Me,” a romantic acoustic guitar and ukulele-tinged Awww Fest which delivers all the feels (and then more feels). Meghan wrote the song thirty days after meeting Daryl, and it was so good that she walked down the aisle to it. We know, it’s a little bit #Vomworthy, but also, am I chopping onions right now or are those tears rolling down my face? I’m not crying, you’re crying.

“And as always, our Grammy-Winning, Diamond Single-having QUEEN didn’t just come to play — she came to slay. She’s serving vocals on the passionate, Celine Dion-esque power ballad “After You.” Plus, Meghan’s serving your insatiable thirst for dance-ready bops with the upbeat banger that is “Foolish.” It slaps so hard you’ll be stanning for days. “As if all the PDA, including foot massages, butterfly kisses and piggy back rides aren’t cringe worthy enough,” says her brother and videographer Ryan… “I’ve got to film it all!”

“Choo choo betch! The Love Train is leaving the station and you better get on board.

 “Be on the lookout for more surprises very soon as she prepares for a landmark 2019.”


Album of The  Week

Hints Allegations and Things Left Unsaid - Collective Soul (1992)

Love is in the water, love is in the air
Show me where to look, tell me will love be there
— Shine
Something’s going wrong inside of you
Burdens bearing down and seeping through
— Wasting Time

Their debut album exceeded expectations for the band growing on the strength of Shine being played on one radio station in Atlanta. That wasn’t actually the goal of the band though, initially frontman Ed Roland hoped to sell his songs to a publishing company rather than actually be in a band. I think this is probably the first instance of trying to sell out before even becoming a real band.


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Best New Track: Comfort

You’ll get well soon
Sleep through the night
You’ll go outside
Enjoy the sun
Soon you’ll feel fine to see everyone
— Julia Jacklin

Laugh A Lot

I could wait until the morning breaks
— Magik*Magik

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Timefighter

And I fight time
It won in a landslide
I’m just as good as anybody
I’m just as bad as anybody
— Lucy Ducas

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Teenage Dirtbag

Yeah, I’m just a teenage dirtbag, baby
Listen to Iron Maiden, baby, with me
— Wheetus

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The 3rd Annual Grahammy Awards!

It is finally the time of year for the biggest awards in music The Grahammy's! This week the winners will are crowned and those receiving awards can have their careers changed forever. Many of these artists see this award as their assent to the top of their field. 

And the awards go to...

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Best Cover

Cigarettes After Sex - Neon Moon

I wouldn’t have guessed a Brooks & Dunn cover would make earn an award this year but it turns out that I like anything that Cigarettes After Sex puts out.

No telling how many tears
I’ve sat here and cried
Or how many lies
That I’ve lied
Telling my poor heart
She’ll come back someday

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Most Surprising Song

Amanda Palmer & Jasmine Power -Mr. Weinstein Will See You Now

This song perhaps more than any other this year encapsulates best the series of disturbing abuses of power in the entertainment industry that have been living just below the surface for years. This song stuck with me after listening to it in a way that most songs don’t.

I storm out through the hallway
I leave the scars inside
You won’t portray my picture
This film is mine

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Best Songwriting

Leon bridges - Beyond

An absolutely beautiful song about falling in love and taking the plunge. I watched one of my best friends dance to this song as his first dance with his bride and I don’t think they could have picked a better choice.

I’m scared to death that she might be it
That the love is real, that the shoe might fit
She might just be my everything and beyond

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Best Track

Cigarettes After Sex - Sesame Syrup

This track would fit in perfectly with their last album and that is about as high as a compliment I can give. Another perfect love song with a mood all its own.

You’ve had a long list of lovers
But none of them matter to you except me
I’ve had a long list of lovers
But none of them matter to me except you

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Album of the Year

Welles - Red Trees and White Trashes

I'm pretty confident that this will be the only place you see this album listed as the best of the year. I am fine with that. I’ve seen this band live twice and am going for a third time next week and couldn’t be more excited. I think this is just the beginning for Welles who but together a great rock album.

And it’s cold in the water
I wonder if I should bother
You know she’s somebody’s daughter
When she gets old it’ll haunt her
I’m here tonight, I have got her

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Grahammy Nominees for Album of the Year

It is finally the time of year for the biggest awards in music The Grahammy's! This week nominees for Album of the Year are announced with the winner chosen next week in addition to the winners for other categories as well. Take a listen to these great albums and maybe your favorite will be chosen for Album of The Year.

I've complied the best track from each of the nominated albums into a playlist, as well as the entire album for each band. These albums were chosen for the quality of the entire album from beginning to end so I highly recommend listening to the entire album if you enjoy any of the tracks in the playlist below.  Also remember to hit the Subscribe button above if you haven't already to get an email reminder when the winner is announced next week!


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Arctic Monkeys - Tranquility Base Hotel & Casino

Best Track - Tranquility Base Hotel & Casino

Named after the site where humans first landed on the moon, this album has a space theme throughout. This album is reminiscent of Bowie’s work, with a playfulness and sense of exploration, which is about as high a compliment as I can give.

 
Oh, just as the apocalypse finally gets prioritized
And you cry some of the hottest tears you ever cried
— One Point Perspective

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Leon Bridges - Good Thing

Best Track - Beyond

This album is perfectly named, as it is just an insanely good thing. Leon extends his throwback sound and continues to be the greatest modern day crooner. This is absolutely the best album to come out this year that your grandma wouldn’t hate.

I’m scared to death that she might be it
That the love is real, that the shoe might fit
She might just be my everything and beyond
— Beyond

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Mitski - Be the Cowboy

Best Track - Nobody

Another beautiful album from her, with the title coming from an inside joke she had with herself. She wanted to have the confidence she admired in others and she has earned it.

 
Sorry I don’t want your touch
It’s not that I don’t want you
Sorry I can’t take your touch
— A Pearl

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Welles- Red Trees and White Trashes

Best Track - Seventeen

One of my favorite bands to see live that absolutely crushed it with their debut. Go see them now while the tickets are still under fifteen bucks because this time next year they are going to be much more expensive.

How fucked up have you got to be
To live a life like mine
— Life Like Mine

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Campdogzz - In Rounds

Best Track - Sorceress

Definitely one of the most fun albums of the year with each song having a special punch to it. The upbeat edge that the album has will put you in a great mood to take on the day. I also am lucky enough to confirm that this band is even better live as they amplify the fun of the album with humor and antics on stage. 

I didn’t know that was what I was putting you through
Forgive me needing familiar ground to lay hope
Before I show you another part of my soul
— On My Own

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Marlon Williams - Make Way For Love

Best Track - Nobody Gets What They Want Anymore

A collection of moody and soulful songs that leaves an impression on you this album has a mellow and wonderful pace to it. He manages to showcase his voice without letting the instrumentals get in the way of highlighting his strengths.

 
People tell me: ‘Boy, you dodged a bullet!’
But if only it had hit me, then I’d know the peace it brings
— Love is a Terrible Thing

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Father John Misty - God’s Favorite Customer

Best Track - Just Dumb Enough to Try

Another of his album’s that doesn’t take itself very seriously in a way that somehow continues to work. Not many artists would be willing to risk what they have built by putting multiple sardonic songs on an album.

You’re all that I have so please don’t die
Wherever you are tonight
— Please Don't Die

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Phoebe Again

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So after I randomly chose a Phoebe Bridgers album last week as the Album of the Week, she released a new one this week starting a new band with Conor Oberst of Bright Eyes. Possibly inspired by my post last week they decided to release a surprise album in full for their new band, of the same name, Better Oblivion Community Center.


Album of The  Week

Deja Entendu -Brand New (2003)

She’s moving way too fast and all he wanted was to hold her
— Sic Transit Gloria... Glory Fades
I am all you’ve ever wanted
What all the other boys all promised
— Okay, I Believe You, But My Tommy Gun Don't

The second album of Brand New full of great songs and weird song titles. Most of the song titles are obscure references to movies. The opener Tautou references the lead actress in the movie Amélie. Home Alone 2 is also represented with the line Okay I Believe You But My Tommy Gun Don’t, Sic Transit Gloria… Glory Fades is from The Wes Anderson movie Rushmore.


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Best New Track: I Didn’t Know What I was In For

I didn’t know what I was in for
When I laid out in the sun
We get burned for being honest
I’ve really never done anything, for anyone
— Better Oblivion Community Center

Fine

Worse than the feeling of being alone
Worse than any feeling you have ever known
— Neighbor Lady

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Cosmic Vibrations

If you want me, you can have me
You can have me but I’m all used up
— Foxygen

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Heartbroke

I see you find the way to pass the time
”You’d like him, he’s a lot like you”
I didn’t see you getting saddled up so soon
”Babe, I know you’ll find somebody too”
— The Good Life

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Backstreets Back

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The Backstreet Boys are back with Chance the Rapper in a new Super Bowl advertisement for Doritos. So there is still a reason to watch the game even if watching the Patriots win again is going to make you upset.


Album of The  Week

Stranger in the Alps -Phoebe Bridgers (2017)

I hate you for what you did
And I miss you like a little kid
— Motion Sickness
Jesus Christ, I’m so blue all the time
And that’s just how I feel
Always have and I always will
— Funeral

A young singer who got discovered and later started dating a much older Ryan Adams has had an odd early career. Her career began to take off and she was able to open for one of her idols Conor Oberst of Bright Eyes, who was for some reason playing solo shows under the name Crawdaddy Lawfette at the time. Her melancholy music inspired heavily by Elliott Smith has a unique cadence to it that has the sweetness of her voice contrast the sad lyrics and notes.


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Best New Track: Land of the Free

When I go out in my car, I don’t think twice
But if you’re the wrong color skin
You grow up looking over both your shoulders
In the land of the free
— The Killers

Glory Box

Give me a reason to love you
Give me a reason to be a woman
I just wanna be a woman
— Portishead

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The Greatest Bastard

Am I the greatest bastard that you met?
The only one you can’t forget?
— Damien Rice

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Never be Mine

Hate to have to watch you go
Thought I’d been through this
Lord knows, I’ve been trying, I’m still trying
— Angel Olsen

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Petty Page

You may remember Robbie Williiams a singer best known for giving the finger to the camera during the World Cup, his multi-year feud with Led Zepplin’s Jimmy Page is getting hotter. Williams has been blasting music from Led Zepplin’s rival bands from outside his home to annoy his neighbor Jimmy Page. The two have been in a neighborly feud for over five years stemming from Page repeatedly blocking William’s attempts to build a pool and Gym in his basement.


Album of The  Week

Wish You Were Here -Pink Floyd (1975)

Welcome my son
Welcome to the machine
— Welcome to the Machine
How I wish
How I wish you were here
We’re just two lost souls
Swimming in a fish bowl
Year after year
— Wish You Were Here

This album has two major themes, one is a criticism of the music industry’s greed with songs like Welcome to the Machine expressing the band’s exasperation with profit over creativity being prioritized. The second theme of the album is the band missing their former band-mate Syd Barrett, who had to leave the band seven years prior due to his struggles with mental illness. The song Shine on You Crazy Diamond is written about him "Remember when you were young, you shone like the sun", His absence is also the inspiration for one of the greatest songs of all time and the album’s namesake Wish You Were Here.


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Best New Track: Seventeen

Sure of what I’ve lived and have known
I see you so uncomfortably alone
I wish I could show you how much you’ve grown
— Sharon Van Etten

Curse of the I-5 Corridor

So I left home and faked my ID
I fucked every man that I wanted to be
I was so stupid then
Why should mystery give its life for me?
— Neko Case

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Cold Flame

Drinkin’ some, waking up alone
Maybe if I try just a little more
I can take myself from this dirty floor
— Band of Skulls

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I Feel Like I’m Drowning

You’re holding me down and
Holding me down
You’re killing me slow
— Two Feet

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Grunge Apparel

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Marc Jacobs is being sued by Nirvana for clearly ripping off a smiley face symbol created by Kurt Cobain. The retailer is using the symbol on one of their Redux Grunge collection tee shirts. Nothing says grunge like stealing someone else’s design to use it on a $115 dollar T-shirt that looks much worse than the original.


Album of The  Week

Metals -Feist (2011)

Leslie Feist got her first big break when her song 1234 was featured in an iPod Nano commercial that exposed music that wouldn’t typically be commercially successful to a vast new audience. The success and touring that came with that big break left her exhausted, and she took two years off of music to recover. The album tries to blend older and newer musical techniques and is written from the perspective of an observer. Feist spent much of her time in between albums living a quiet life and watching the events of her friend’s lives unfold. Songs like The Bad in Each Other is written from this perspective, as she feels like the longer her friends were in a relationship the fuzzier their perspective of their partner became.

When a good man and a good woman
Can’t find the good in each other
Then a good man and a good woman
Will bring out the worst in the other
— The Bad in Each Other
When you comfort me
It doesn’t bring me comfort actually
— Comfort Me

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Best New Track: Cigarette

I wish you were in my sheets some way, somehow
’Cause I got pictures of you in my head
It’s not the same as you here instead
Caught up some type of way to get to where I need
— Old Sea Brigade

All My Tears

When I go don’t cry for me
In my fathers arms I’ll be
The wounds this world left on my soul
Will all be healed and I’ll be whole
— Emmylou Harris

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A Poem

A new accommodation
To go out on my own
— Stella Donnelly

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Rain in Soho

There’s a club where you’d like to go
You could meet someone who’s lost like you
Revel in the darkness like a pair of open graves
Fumble through the fog for a season or two
— The Mountain Goats

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