Not exactly the most promising start to the 2019 winter season. Yesterday morning we had an ice storm roll in at just the wrong/perfect time (depending on your perspective) and had a snow day because the roads were just bad enough to force our principal’s hand. We went four years without a snow day; now we’ve had two this calendar year and the earliest one in the season since M started kindergarten. Throw in how we went from the 90s to the 40s in about 48 hours back in October, and a November that has been running 10-15 degrees cooler than normal, and this winter is already looking like a beast.

Here are some tunes to help ease you into the pre-holiday weekend.

“Stay With Me” – Longwave. These cats have been making enjoyable indie rock for a long time now. They were kind of second-tier staples of my mid-‘00s listening. Glad that they’re still at it.

“Come Back (Left Behind)” – Palace Winter. This Danish group (shout out to my paternal grandmother’s ancestors!) sounds like someone else, but I’m not exactly sure who. So I was surprised to learn that they’re not some side project or supergroup of people I already know. 

“Sunshine Rock” – Bob Mould. Is there a more reliable artist in music for fast-charging, power-pop tunes like this than Mould? The lead single off his up-coming LP, this refers both to his recent years living in Berlin (celebrating the explosion of the sun after Germany’s long, dark winters) and his desire to find the bright in the world, despite our political landscape or personal issues, like the loss of Mould’s two parents. This is a song better suited for spring. But as we slip into what appears to be an epic winter, it is just the jolt that I needed.

“Hey Jude” – Wilson Pickett. Good Lord, how had I never heard this until this week? I discovered it via Tom Breihan’s columns on Stereogum where he is running through every song that has hit #1 on the Billboard Hot 100. This week he hit The Beatles’ “Hey Jude.” Breihan always tries to share significant cover versions of the song he’s writing about. In this case, he was unapologetic about his belief that Pickett’s version far outshines the original. I’m not sure I would go that far – It’s Hey Fucking Jude after all – but I love the swing to it, Pickett’s wail, and the epic closing solo by a (then) young and unknown Duane Allman. 

“She’s A Beauty” – The Tubes. I didn’t have any any videos lined up, so here’s an absolute classic that I heard after dropping the kids off this morning.