Gush: Neko Case

That moment when you’re one song into a live session and your remember it ain’t live. Neko Case can do absolutely no wrong!

I can’t wait to see her in late September!

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Gush: Lucy Dacus (over and over and over and over again)

When I was in high school, like most kids, I kept up an agenda. I’d tattoo lyrics of my favourite songs all over my planner. Transcribing lyrics as I heard them without using the internet or album linings.

Well, yesterday I found myself doing the very same thing. Less of an angst-filled time killing activity, but more of an attempt to interact with Lucy Dacus’ beautiful album on a deeper level. I can’t get over how incredible Dacus’ words are and jotting them all down made me appreciate them even more.

NPR’s All Songs Considered personality, Bob Boilen, called Lucy Dacus the best new artist that he discovered this year [2016]. This is more or less what Bob Boilen said of Dacus and gushed particularly hard the perfect seven and a half minute tune, “Map on a Wall.”

The opening act for Julien Baker. She’s an artist called Lucy Dacus she’s from Richmond, VA, not too far from Washington, DC. And I didn’t know her at all and was completely blown away by her music… I was going to play the seven and a half minute song from her album titled No Burden, which comes out at the end of February. But I am going to play the one without any question that will get the most airplay and is the most catchy, wonderful song. Not the one that takes you down windy wonderful paths and so forths. The song I’m going to play for you is called “I Don’t Wanna Be Funny Anymore”

 

This took me a while, but here is my probably far from perfect transcribed lyrics of “Map on a Wall”:

Oh please, don’t make fun of me. With my crooked smile and my crowded teeth or my pigeon feet or my knobby knees well I’ve got more problems than not. But I feel fine and I made up my mind. To live happily feeling beautiful beneath the trees above the ground solid at the core.

Oh please, don’t make fun of me. oh you know I get frightened so easily and I’m all alone and the floor board creek. It’s those noises int eh dark. But I am alive and I made up my mind. To live fearlessly, running wild beneath the trees above the ground solid at the core.

Send my regards to the north my friend. I am built for the heat I regret to admit. my fear of freezing keeps me on my feet and so far my whole life is an unlucky street, they say you should take the credit when it comes but i believe in XX?

oh please don’t make fun of me oh I’ll try my best to tell it like it is. But i’ll bite my tongue and i’ll close my lips. When nobody wants to be ___. But here we are and something about it doesn’t feel like an accident. We’re all looking for something to adore and how to survive the bending and breaking.

I walked on to the ___ I was a child. but when did I realize that some ways ___ passed thousands of miles there are people like me walking on legs like mine. Coming closer or farther away. Coming to me to find my grace (?) hoping good comes from good and the good comes from bad anyway.

Oh please don’t make fun of me. With my heart of gold and my restless soul. Oh please don’t make fun of me. This smile happens genuinely. If you want to see the world then you have to say goodbye. Because a map does no good hanging on a wall. If you want to see the world then you have to say goodbye. Cause a map does no good hanging on a wall.

Gush: “How” by Daughter

Daughter just released the album Not to Disappear on January 15, which was also Elena Torna’s twenty-sixth birthday. Not to Disappear is follow up to the slow, but sweet debut full-length album If You Leave. I’m happy to report this tune is more upbeat, sounding a bit shoegazey, especially with Torna’s gorgeous Mazzy Star-like vocals.

 

And for good measure, you should probably watch this lovely performance:

Ty Segall five: Mikal Cronin

I drunkenly discovered Mikal Cronin (pronounced like Michael) at NXNE 2013. The guy played a three-night stand at tiny Toronto dive bar the Silver Dollar. The Silver Dollar is famously known for a dispute fellow garage rocker Jay Reatard and Toronto concert booker/promoter Dan Burke both lost their shit (see this). I wasn’t at that gig, but I remember hearing about it.

And while long-time bud Ty Segall was releasing 10 albums, Mikal (we’re on a first name basis) got a degree in music. The fella’s now got three solo albums out and he hasn’t even hit thirty years of age yet. Mikal has a cleaner sound than Ty, which drew me in faster and more immediately than Ty Segall. I however love that they work collaboratively and allow each other to do their own thing.

Mikal is touring with Ty’s band, the Muggers, this year. I’m over-the-moon excited to see them play Toronto in a few weeks. Here’s an awesome, George Harrison-sounding tune, “Get Along.” I think I prefer this version to the studio version:

 

Gush/Study Time: “Beyond the Valley of the Three White Horses” by Andrew Bird

The tune “Three White Horses” song has swiftly made its way into my heart as one of the finest Andrew Bird songs. “Beyond the Valley of the Three White Horses” is the longer, extended version of the tune. This is the perfect medley of all of my favourite bits of the tune. It runs ten minutes long, with few lyrics, making it the perfect study tune!

If you’re a dedicated follower, you know I spent a lot of time getting close to Andrew Bird’s music in the fall. This is just the extension of my love for Bird and excitement for his gig at TURF’14 in Toronto as Andrew Bird & the Hands of Glory, which his website describes as “an old timey acoustic configuration featuring Tift Merritt, Alan Hampton, and Eric Heywood on pedal steel.  They’ll be bringing the huddled around one microphone approach to the summer shows, including …” I imagine the collaboration will look exactly like this Sunshine Session, sun included:

To watch: Iron and Wine

Video

More specifically the 17:00 point where he comments on the tune “Naked As We Came” and then goes on to perform the tune “Lion’s Mane.”

Sam Beam comments that he’s such an idiot for titling a song called “Naked As We Came,” because of all of the flack he received from giving it that name.

This is an all-request gig… Does it get better than that? For us, the audience, of course.