Audio Philes: songs for Thanksgiving
As Thanksgiving break approaches and the weather gets colder, I can’t help but think of family. I’m going home for the first time in months next week and getting the chance to de-stress from this hectic semester is going to be nice. In the spirit of all this, I’ve been thinking about the music that I’m going to be playing over Thanksgiving break. All of these optimistic and familiar notes make me feel like putting on some folky tunes.
The first song I’m recommending is “Billions of Eyes” by Lady Lamb. Although the more you listen to the lyrics of this song, the more you seem to question it and, to an extent, yourself, the tune is upbeat and happy. The plot revolves around catching a train, which is fitting for me as I’m taking the Amtrak back home, and the song as a whole is light-hearted and fun. The song is about familiarity, fitting in, and relief—exactly what I need after this last round of midterms.
My next recommendation is “Dear Old Dad” by Ezra Bell. This song, while more melancholy than the first, brings about a lot of the same feelings. “Dear Old Dad” is an ode to the past and one that celebrates togetherness, albeit in a different way. The song’s use of background vocals, strings and horns creates a beautiful atmosphere that makes me think back on my past, on myself and on my childhood. “Dear Old Dad”’s folky tune and sad-yet-hopeful lyrics give it a unique feel that makes it stand out among most other songs.
The third song that you should listen to over break is “Salt Lake City” by the band Motherfolk. “Salt Lake City” is a love song, but it is more than that—“Salt Lake City” is sad in its devotion. The song has a beautiful melody and acoustic guitar accompaniment to go along with its depressingly loving lyrics. “Salt Lake City” is about loving someone so much that you want them to die before they experience the darker points of life. Although morbid, the song’s meaning is sweet and shows true dedication to its subject. It reminds me, in spirit but not content, of “The Road” by Cormac McCarthy. The song is beautiful, but in an incredibly dark way.
This last song is one to play in front of your family if you wanted to alienate yourself and possibly be asked some strange questions, like “What has college done to you?” and “What happened to my folky child?” I am talking, of course, about the accelerationist group Death Grips and their song “No Love.” While many Death Grips songs could bring an intense reaction from some of your older family members, I’m choosing “No Love” simply because it’s my favorite. Flatlander’s cyclical beats along with Zach Hill’s powerful drumming and MC Ride’s intense, to put it lightly, rapping come together to make a hypnotic and almost overwhelming track. Full of angst (or something more than that) and power, “No Love,” and Death Grips as a whole, sets itself apart from other music in a way that can’t be stated so much as understood. Not to mention sometimes folky music just can’t release the stress as much as something this intense.
And there you have it, four songs to listen to over the break. Light and dark, beautiful and intense and folky and industrial, these songs are sure to make your next week a nice break from the everyday stresses of Wash. U.