Finding My Groove

I find it quite hard to talk about music. Aside from my lack of general musical knowledge, I find it hard to justify my taste because I can’t really put my finger on why I like particular bands or songs. Apart from waiting to listen to them and go, “… That bit!” I got nothin’.

Also, this is what my collection currently looks like…

IMAG1656It needs some T.L.C.

So, I have decided that it’s about time to go through it all, rediscover my taste, learn a bit more about my favourites (because, by Jove, I will have favourites if it’s the last thing I do) and possibly even find things to say about them when that dreaded question, “What kind of music do you like?” comes up again. Because it will. And I should really make an effort to join the rest of the world for that conversation.

So, as a starter, I am going to listen through five albums at a time from my collection, and record my thoughts on them. I may get rid of some, I may find favourites. I may question my past consumer self.

I may even look forward to having a smaller, more definitive, more used collection of CDs. And once I’ve made my way through what I already own, I’m going to go in search of new music to excite the groove that is hopefully still in my heart! Music I think I should know, and music I feel I want to know. I’m open to suggestions. What’s on your shelf?

*If you click on the title of the albums below, it’ll take you to links where you can buy them.

cd1304_cover_hi-res_1440

Max Richter – The Blue Notebooks

Thoughts: Beautiful. Moving. Reminds me somewhat of the film Shutter Island, on which the second track, On The Nature Of Daylight, is mixed with Dinah Washington’s This Bitter Earth (also worth checking out.) I liked the film, and it was also my first experience of Max Richter. I have a feeling this will form a recurring theme in my musical taste; positive memories associated with filmic experiences, leading to fuller enjoyment of music that I might not otherwise appreciate as much. Which reminds me of my first real understanding of the power of music videos – watching Keane’s Bedshaped, which I caught on Sky at my friend’s house while we were in school. I was so moved by the little grey figure and his plight that I felt a new openness to the sound of the song, which I now really like.

Favourite tracks: On The Nature Of Daylight – which inspires me so much I have used it in the development of a physical theatre piece.

Interesting facts: He’s British (Wahey!) and he co-founded and spent ten years with a contemporary classical ensemble called Piano Circus.

Keeper? Definitely.

grace1

Jeff Buckley – Grace

Thoughts: Quite stressful to listen to. Not for every mood, certainly. Quite a varied album. Reminds me of Muse. Or rather, they must remind me of Buckley. This is one I feel I should like because the general consensus is that he’s an important artist, but actually it’s not the sort of thing I’d put on regularly and sit through. I also don’t like his earring. Sorry, Jeff. I appreciate the passion in it though. (The album, not the earring.)

Favourite tracks: So Real

Interesting facts: Was raised as Scotty Moorhead. This is his only studio album, which quite surprises me. He also seems only to have acquired a following a few years before his untimely end, dying at age 31, I believed previously, in suicide, though apparently not.

Keeper? S’pose so, even if only for occasion.

Julianna-Barwick-The-Magic-Place

Julianna Barwick – The Magic Place

Thoughts: Stunning. Different. Refreshing. Calming. Massage music. Charges my motivated energies. It was a gift, a sort of “Try this.” I’m glad I did.

Favourite tracks: It’s more of a onesy album.

Interesting facts: She was born in Louisiana and raised in Missouri. Her music is composed of loops and layers of her own voice. She has one full-length album and one EP that came before this one.

Keeper? Yes.

aha

Kings of LeonAha Shake Heartbreak

Thoughts: Not particularly my thing anymore, not something I’ll be getting out a lot, but nice for a bit of nostalgia, or a sunny drive. Despite the subsequent over-hype over-playing of newer songs, I think Kings of Leon are alright as a band and have some good songs.

Favourite tracks: King of the Rodeo and Razz

Interesting facts: It’s the only album by Kings of Leon to have a Parental Advisory certificate. The cover is reminiscent of Queen’s A Night At The Opera.

Keeper? Definitely. Good to be able to pull out every now and then.

close-to-paradise_jacket
Patrick Watson – Close To Paradise

Thoughts: Absolutely my cup of tea. The kind of thing I can put on in pretty much any mood and just drift away to. I love the use of instruments, the different moods, the playful tones, minor keys, atmosphere invoked, the layers. It makes me feel nostalgic.

Favourite tracks: Close to Paradise, because the kick-in in that gives me such a rush, but they’re all pretty damn good. The Great Escape is another long-standing favourite of mine.

Interesting facts: On September 24, 2007, the album won the Polaris Music Prize.

Keeper? If only because it’s so important to me now, I feel I should always keep hold of this one.

All pictures from Google Images.

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2 thoughts on “Finding My Groove

  1. I have the Patrick Watson, and also the Buckley one. Apart from the live albums, there is another Buckley album. He was working on songs for his second album he was going to call My Sweetheart The Drunk. Finally happy with how they were going, he sent a tape of them to his band so they could familiarise themselves with them as they flew to join him and record them with him. But as his mates were in the air travelling, he was drowning in the Wolf River. His recordings, along with previous attempts at recording them in the studio, were eventually released as Sketches For My Sweetheart The Drunk.
    Check it out-I like it, and can hear a similarity between Watson and Buckley. There are a few films in the offing too, apparently.
    Sorry for the long winded comment-I like Buckley! Had loads more to offer. But I guess that is a selfish view, yeah? A life too short.

    • Thanks for the hint! I don’t think it’s selfish to see further unrealised potential in artists. It is a tragedy for anyone to die in an accident like that, before ageing and living a full life.

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