The week in music (Aug 15 2013): Beck, Tears for Fears (Arcade Fire), Kaiser Chiefs + Calvin Harris, Rayko and TV on the Radio

Each week I hear sooo many songs I want to share with everyone that I can’t dedicate a separate post to each. In fact I think my Facebook and Twitter friends will appreciate this most because I’ll be consolidating my music posts rather than inundating them with daily music obsessions.

Hopefully I can make this a regular series where I’ll host sets of the stuff I’ve found each week (or however frequently I choose) on my Soundcloud. Here’s this week’s set for the week of August 15  — click if you want to listen while reading. Or, if you prefer, skip the reading and focus on listening…no one will know the difference, I ain’t no NSA:P

So this week I’ve come across several tracks that really illustrate the blurring of the lines between rock music, indie and electronic over the years…I’ve never been fond of putting labels on music and so I appreciate that it’s getting harder and harder to tell which genres influence an artist. Here we have Beck, TV on the Radio, Kaiser Chiefs with Calvin Harris, Tears for Fears and Rayko — a blend of electro-inspired rock remixes, Arabic percussion and even orchestral drum and bass…whatever that is.

Le Track: Beck – I Won’t Be Long – I haven’t heard anything by Beck in so long that I almost forgot how badass he was when we were growing up. Back in the late 90s he was one of the only cats on the street experimenting with music while still putting it out on mainstream airwaves. At the time we didn’t have access to much independent music through blogs so Beck was quite revolutionary. I regret not knowing more of his work. At the time he was too experimental for my childhood ears and I only ever got into his big popular tracks like Devil’s Haircut + Loser. “I Won’t Be Long” is not playful like some of Beck’s older stuff, but I do find this solemn tone of his quite soothing.

Le Track: Kaiser Chiefs – Good Days Bad Days (remix by Calvin Harris) – Here’s another band I’ve never paid much attention to. I just really liked how Calvin Harris used Arabic drums in this track while still adding a new wave feel to it. The original is a whole other story and I prefer this version.

Le Track: Tears for Fears – Ready to Start (Arcade Fire cover) OK so, Tears for Fears has seriously come back with a bang. What better way to introduce yourself to the online indie music young’uns (who were probably not born when this new wave band was at its prime) than by launching your Tears for Fears Soundcloud account with an Arcade Fire cover?..aptly titled…”Ready to Start.” The truth is I never really listened to them to start with…maybe danced to them on a few drunken dancefloors… The fact that they gave such a cool twist to this cover, however — orchestra & Arcade Fire, sure, been there done that — but drum & bass? — means we should listen to it.

Le Track: Rayko – City Street – I couldn’t -not- share some long and winding disco electronica in this. Rayko is a Spanish DJ who I would love to hear on a dancefloor somewhere soon. I feel like this track should be playing with a black and white film projecting on a wall while dancers pull out some competitive late 80s break dance moves ,you know, shoulder-shifting, moonwalking, etc. I’d watch, of course. Yup.

Le Track: TV on the Radio – Mercy – Mercy has to be my favourite track on this list. I have a soft spot for TV on the Radio. I don’t think all of their songs are good and hardly care for their albums as a whole. But the few tracks of theirs I like — Wolf Like Me, Staring at the Sun, Will Do, DLZ…are infallible. There is absolutely no flaw in these songs. They’re often sexy and hypnotizing. I’ve been put into a near trance with TVOTR’s simple and meaningful lyrics. In fact, I think they should just stick to releasing their best stuff as  singles…like this one.

Link to this Soundcloud setlist for August 15 2013

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