Category Archives: Sunday Song

Sunday Song : Riptide – Vance Joy

The video for this song is endlessly amusing to me. I swore Wes Anderson had to have directed it. (It’s not.)

I am pretty sure it is a regular guitar but in my mind it’s a ukulele. It could be the tambourine that is underpinning this song that highlights the plucky sound of the song. It has a very steady rhythm that gives it an upbeat feel and

The singer (who is not actually named Vance Joy according to the Internet) has a very old timey sound to me. I feel like I am listening to the song through a transistor radio.



I am supposing that is an intention sound based on the video which has an old school feel (Pan Am tickets!!!)

The sound is simple but I love it. I find myself listening to it once a day and then realizing I am singing it to myself as I go about the rest of the day.  A great summer song, while you’re cruising off to the beach (though hopefully you don’t run into actual riptides.)

Official Video for Riptide

Sunday Song: I Got U – Duke Dumont ft Jax Jones

Though I have dabbled in down beat electronica thanks to my husband’s influences, I can count on one hand true house music/DJ mixes I like. So I have no idea why when I was doing my mindless review of Buzzfeed articles, I decided I needed to listen to this song which was discussed in an article.

This song IS summer.

It has beautiful steel drums underpinning it which just scream tropical island. The beat is perfectly paced; fast and lively without being exhausting, there is still a laid back beach feel. The female singer’s voice is smooth and warm.

And while I don’t think most people pay attention to lyrics in house music, I love the lyrics “Ask me what I did with my life? I spent it with you. If I lose my fame and fortune, it really don’t matter as long as I got you baby.” It just reminds me of what is truly important in life…LOVE.

I listened to this at my desk at work and bopped along like an idiot without a care. It was also perfect while I was poolside in Vegas. Really this song should just be on repeat for the rest of the summer  no matter where you are and probably as the months turn cold again.

The video is pretty awesome too. The premise is a guy using a virtual reality hood to experience being on a tropic getaway.

Video for I Got U

Sunday Song: Do I Wanna Know? – Arctic Monkeys

First, I need to give a shout out to ALT 98.7. I know there are all kinds of talk about “music discovery” products nowadays but for me the main way I find new music is the old fashioned way, on the radio. Thankfully, its not like the old days where if you heard a song on the radio you then had to wait patiently for it to come back on and then hold your cassette tape next to the radio. For me, ALT 98.7 is the place I find new jams. It doesn’t replace my favorite radio station from my hometown CD102.5 but it scratches the itch. I know that is not the hip station for new music but I am just being honest here. Other stations that known in LA as tastemakers do not tend to play music I love. I preference is for great beats, loud and fast. Folk versions of AC/DC don’t usually make me want to turn the radio up. This doesn’t mean I think ALT 98.7 doesn’t get some things wrong (STOP PLAYING IMAGINE DRAGONS!) but I find a lot of great new songs on there that I probably wouldn’t “discovery” via some app.

On to the song! This song starts with a huge bass drum thump and a downtempo bass guitar that has a bit of distortion to it. I am in love with rock that sounds like real music and hasn’t been smoothed out too much. Real rock should be a little messy, in my opinion. The song never gets very fast but it builds with a chorus that is loud with lots of voice.

Its not so much a song about getting back together with someone as it is that sick feeling we have all had after a break up where we’re still hooked on the person and we can’t shake it. Trying to go back  over and over to the person, whether we should. The sound has that kind of drank too much, late night sound. The feeling when last call comes and goes and you find yourself calling your ex even though you know you shouldn’t.

These lyrics scream drunk dialing to me:

Ever thought of calling when you’ve had a few?
‘Cause I always do
Maybe I’m too busy being yours to fall for somebody new
Now I’ve thought it through

Official Video for Do I Wanna Know?

Sunday Song: Shake It Out – Florence + The Machine

Sometimes I hear a song and I only get about half the lyrics. And from that partial understanding, I assume the rest. I thought this was a more empowerment song based on the chorus, especially the line “It’s hard to dance with the devil on our back, so shake him off.” To me that is a great image for when I am feeling dragged down with worry and stress. I think of all that stress and such as the devil and I should just shake it off and rise above. This is how I heard the song. Another lyric that lead me to this was “It’s always darkest before the dawn.” Which to me says “hang in there, its going to get better.” Combine this with the kind of fast pace of the song and the way it rises with a loud voice. It seems triumphant. It seems to say “You’re going to be okay. Just shake it off!”

In reading the lyrics, I am not sure that is really want the intention of the song is. It seems to be a tale of love gone wrong. That won’t stop me from belting out the parts I remember in the car after a bad day at work. Because this is the perfect kind of song for that. Its loud and it repeats. When you are trying to beat out a bad day, there is nothing better than a chorus that repeats the heck out of itself so even if you didn’t know the lyrics before you will by the end of of the first chorus.

The video is pretty odd. It reminded me for Annie Lennox and apparently I am not alone in that as the comparison is noted in the wikipedia article about the song.

Official Video for Shake It Out

Sunday Songs (2 for 1): Stubborn Love – The Lumineers & Elephant – Tame Impala

Stubborn Love – The Lumineers

This is one of those songs I classify as auditory crack. When I downloaded it from iTunes, I listened it on loop a few thousand times. And still a month or so later, I find myself putting it on at least once a day to help myself through the day. I just need my hit of it.

I love the bouncy flavor, its one of those songs that I can listen to when I am having  a hard day and it reminds me to keep going both lyrically (“Keep your head up….looooove”) and also with the great guitar and rhythm.

My favorite line is “The opposite of love is indifference.” I never really thought about it before but it is such an absolute truth. If you are made or angry with something it means you care what they did. If you don’t care anymore the love and caring are gone.

Official Video for Stubborn Love

Elephant – Tame Impala

My husband’s car has this amazing function called RDS (Radio Data System) that tells you the name of a song on the radio (assuming the station has the encoding available.) One night I was out on my own driving his car and this song came on. I thought for sure it was some Beatles song I had managed to never hear on Breakfast with the Beatles. The RDS informed me it was not the Beatles (the way it scrolled I wasn’t sure if the song was Tame Elephant or Impala or…)

I love the strut in this song. It makes me feel like I should be walking with great purpose down a runway (or just down the street).

I played the song for my husband who is a huge Beatles fan and he seemed so confused. Even he thought it was the Beatles at first. Apparently John has been reincarnated as a Aussie named Kevin. My husband pointed out there is a bit of Black Rebel Motorcycle Club, which I definitely hear too.

My next experiment will be to play this song for my mom and see what she thinks.

Official Video for Elephant

Sunday Song – Take A Walk – Passion Pit

For a few months I had been head down in work and I wasn’t hearing much new music unless you qualify songs on cartoons my son watches. I had started to think I was moving into that stage in life where all “new music” sounds like noise and I would be saying things like “they just don’t make music like they used to.” I admit, I have said that actually. But recently, I have been craving new music. Take a Walk is one of the new songs that I am always hoping to catch on the radio. I know I am a little late to the Passion Pit love in. A year or so ago, friends were raving about Passion Pit and I just never felt compelled to take a listen. Sometimes I just have to discover things for myself, I’m stubborn like that.

This song caught my attention because of the chorus. When I am really upset or frazzled, taking a walk has been my go to head clearer. I can’t always do it but when I can, I find taking a walk can really help with working out an a tough issue.

The cadence of the song is very powerful. It has a determined sound that reminds me of marching. I think it is the bass drum that thumps in the back of the song that adds. Its almost subconscious but it definitely drives the song forward.

The concept behind the song is very interesting. According to the lead singer, its a patch work of stories of the men in his family. I can see how most people would see it as a political song especially with its references to drained bank accounts and socialists. Either, way you look at it the lyrics are very well laid out forming a story.

Video for Take a Walk [Official]


Sunday Song – Somebody That I Used to Know – Gotye

Driving on a Sunday morning, it is rare that anything new catches my ear on the radio. Usually I am listening to NPR’s Weekend Edition or Breakfast with the Beatles. This morning weekend had wrapped up and KLOS decided to play some John & Yoko song that wasn’t doing it for me. I switch over to one of my other radio presets expecting to hear something I recognized or something I would tune out. Instead I heard a song that sounded like Genesis. Except it didn’t quite sound 80’s enough for the Genesis I was familiar. It was Gotye.

The lead singer of Gotye is some sort of Phil Collins/Peter Gabriel hybrid. When he sings slow and low he has a cadence that conjures Phil Collins (think In the Air Tonight). Later in the song, he goes high and processed which definitely sounds like Peter Gabriel (think In Your Eyes or possibly Steam). I credit my husband for helping me figure this out because all I only got as far as “Why do I keep thinking of Genesis when I listen to this song?!” Gotye also seems to channel Peter in his video.

I really like the lyrics of this song. It reminds me of a few of my break ups in my life. At the time the break up seemed  harsh and later the person just becomes someone I used to know.

Video for Somebody That I Used to Know

Sunday Song: Sail – AWOLNATION

The best way I can sum up this song is “sound collage.” According to wikipedia, I am using that term incorrectly. The reason I use collage is this song has so many kinds of sounds in it. Though I initially wanted to classify it was electronica, there is natural human voice, and actual musical instrument sounds mixed with altered voice sounds and totally unnatural computer sounds that don’t even sound like typical electronica.

The contrasts in this song are what make it an amazing song. The musical instruments contrasted with the electronic distorted sound and the softer voices compared to what main singing which is essentially yelling. All the contrast adds to the emotion of the song which seems kind of desperate and dire.

The first time I heard this song, I was driving at night and the lights of the city mixed with the emotion of the song came together in a perfect emotional picture. Its definitely a unique song that I wouldn’t always be in the mood for, but fits a kind of displaced loneliness that we all feel from time to time.

Official Video for Sail


Sunday Song: Georgia – Band of Horses (cover)

I went into the office early one morning to try and catch up on some work and needed something to get me going so I queued up this song. Little did I know a few of my coworkers were also in the office early…and that I unconsciously started belting out along with the song. As the song started into the final chorus, one of my coworkers leaned into my doorway with a quizzical look on his face and I quickly tried to act professional after getting caught in the act. “I thought I was the only one in the office,” I said weakly.

I love this song, it is a great get up and go kind of song. Its not particularly fast but it is extremely upbeat both in sound and lyrics. Of course how can you be backed by a marching band and NOT sound upbeat?

And these lyrics:

You’ll always be home to me
I belong to you
and yes you belong to me
When they ask me where I’m from
I’m proud to say that I’m your son.

How can it not sound like a song that will pick you up on an early morning or anytime you need some get up and go?

While Cee-Lo may be the credit for the lyrics, I feel that Band of Horses does a better job with this song than he does. The song doesn’t fit Cee-Lo’s sound in my mind. Its too triumphant and he tends to have a bit of snark in his sound. I doubt I would have paid much attention to this song if only his version existed. Band of Horses does it up right with much emotion that makes you feel like you are  (and as I said adding an entire marching band probably doesn’t hurt.)

Listen to this song and I dare say you’ll have a hard time not singing along too.

User Video – Georgia by Band of Horses

For contrast: User Video – Georgia by Cee-Lo


Sunday Song: Rolling in the Deep – Adele

Its been a while since any new music has really captured me. I often listen to the radio in the car, but as of late I am consistently disappointed with the offerings and/or here things I have heard a million times before.

Thankfully, Adele has broken the monotony of radio listening. This is a song I can get into and actually have a reason to crank the radio up.

First, this woman’s voice is amazing. Her ability to be so soulful allows her to convey such depth (no pun intended) in this song. I get a little caught up in the sadness of the song even though its been quite long time (thankfully) since I got my heart broken.

Second, I love out the soul sound of the singing is mixed with a more modern sound of underneath. It allows this song to pop out and not just sound like a retread of an oldie.

Its a powerful song that really holds you in its grip. I can’t possibly change the radio dial when this is on.

Rolling in the Deep – Official Video