Its the third week of my Senior year and so far so good.
I’m JJ Kim the lingua music guru. You can interpret that however you want.
You can expect some music reviews, random nonsense poetry (usually about dumb love stuff), and maybe even some original music but most likely music reviews of cool artists, albums, songs, and what not.
Writing is not my strongest skill so don’t expect any fancy words. :)
For my first official lingua blog post I will talk about what music is to me.
Music at its most basic definition is the idea of tension and release. If a song doesn’t contain those two elements I will most likely never listen to that song again. Music at its most powerful state is a way for me to climb back out of holes that so often surrounding situations put me in. It is 100% true that the best songs are written in times of extreme difficulty. I hope that music impacts you in a way that is as real and powerful as it does to me.
I am the business manager for Lingua, but I also have a strong passion for music. I will be posting playlists, album reviews, and other music-related material on the Tumblr on a semi-weekly basis. I’d love to hear suggestions or feedback from you readers!
This first playlist is comprised of some of my favorite tracks I’ve heard this year.
Link to the full playlist: Radio Show 10/13
1. “Jackson”- Cymbals Eat Guitars
Cymbals Eat Guitars is a band out of New Jersey. To fully recognize the complexity of this song, listen with the lyrics in front of you. They read more like a poetic story than a structured verse-chorus song written by a neo-90s emo band. Cymbals Eat Guitars have perfected their sound on their newest album, LOSE, and this song is a prime example of their efforts.
2. “Fool”- Perfume Genius
This is my favorite song off of Seattle native Perfume Genius’ new album, “Too Bright”. The album deals with Mike Hadreas’ struggles with sexual identity. The bleak honesty displayed on the album is what has kept me coming back to it. The song itself is written in an interesting format, with the first stanza mirrored by the last, with a few minor alterations. The stanzas are broken up by a beautiful swelling breakdown. The words change only slightly, but it is the heartbreaking tone of his voice that tells the listener all they need to know: love is painful.
3. “Rose 4 U”- TEEN
TEEN are a band out of Brooklyn, consisting of three sisters and another member. The song’s title, as well as the band’s, reflect the shallowness of a 21st century text culture, yet the lyrics convey the longing we feel for human interaction perfectly. Their sound is a fresh, youthful take on the path that David Byrne cemented with Talking Heads.
4. “Porcelain”- snowbird
This track has quickly ascended my favorite songs list. It invokes imagery of a desolate winter landscape dotted with small but warming fires. The songwriting is intimate and complex, and is highlighted by a shimmering melody and harmony, which drive the song as it ebbs and flows freely from beginning to end.
5. “Afterburner”- Panda Bear
This song is from Animal Collective frontman Noah Benjamin Lennox, whose stage name is Panda Bear. I appreciate the organic feel of this piece, which sheds traditional songwriting tact, as is often the case with Panda Bear. Instead, he opts for an evolving idea that seems to grow and mature as it plays; it even seems to change with each additional listen. The lyrics are simple, but are sung in this evolutionary style, growing from the first word to the end of each line.
6. “Hayloft”- Mother Mother
Mother Mother are a Canadian rock band. This song is a quick piece combining the vocal play of Jack White with the tight instrumental control of The Strokes. It wastes no time, clocking in at just over 3 minutes, but those minutes are packed with an exhilarating story of young forbidden love that resonates long after the last notes are plucked.
7. “Call This Home”- An Atlas to Follow
What starts off sounding like a generic folk-derivative actually turns out to be one of the best him-and-her duets I’ve heard in years. The band, An Atlas to Follow, has barely more followers on social media than my sister’s French bulldog Picasso. So do the music world some justice and get this talented band out to the masses.
8. “All I’ve Ever Known”- Bahamas
No note is out of place in the final song from Bahamas latest album, titled Bahamas is Afie. Its tempo is slow enough that the invested listener might find his or herself anticipating the next chord, hoping to speed the song up to a cheerier pace. Pay close attention to the strings, as they play an integral part in the emotional pulse of the song.
9. “I Wanna Roll With You”- Connan Mockasin
Connan Mockasin hails from New Zealand, home of the Shire and, apparently, some weirdly good music. The song combines the grooving sensuality of the 70s with the creepiness of Johnny Depp’s Willy Wonka, and yet, I can’ t get enough of it. Behind the stalker-ish voice hides a seemingly honest and raw plea: I just wanna find your love. This guy might just be the Prince of our generation.
Listen live to my radio show every monday night at kspu.org from 10-11. Tonight I will be playing through this playlist and talking about each song.