“I Need a Teacher” – Hiss Golden Messenger. I’m never sure how to pronounce this band’s name. Is it hiss like a cat? Or just his with an extra S? Good thing I’m not podcasting anymore and don’t have to worry about it. This is right in their sweet spot.
“Forever Half Mast” – Lucy Dacus. Dacus put out a special track for Mother’s Day and then followed it up with this for the Fourth of July. It’s a pretty solid, modern protest song.
“The Way You Make Love” – Gena Rose Bruce. The most obvious comparison for Bruce’s sound is Mazzy Star. But Bruce has a swing and smolder that Hope Sandoval never, ever had in her music. This is a really good track.
“The Twist” – Wintersleep. As part of the celebration of the 10th anniversary of Frightened Rabbit’s classic The Midnight Organ Fight, the band was working with artists they admire to produce an album of covers of all the Organ tracks. That project was nearly done before Scott Hutchison’s death but was set aside in the wake of his suicide. The surviving members put the final touches on the disk over the spring and released it two weeks ago. It’s been a weird listen for me. Organ is one of my four or five favorite albums ever, and hearing the entire thing covered, in order, with multiple versions of a few songs, is a little tough to get my head around.
It’s really a fine collection of performers: Craig Finn, Benjamin Gibbard, The Twilight Sad, Julien Baker, and Aaron Dessner of the National and Lauren Mayberry of CHVRCHES collaborating are the most notable names. I like some of the songs. Others I don’t particularly care for. I think it is because the lyrics were so personal to Scott that it is hard to hear others sing them.
Anyway, this is my favorite by a band I’ve enjoyed but never dove into enough. It is faithful to the original but you also know, immediately, that it is a Wintersleep track.
“Endless Summer” – The Jezabels. This video says it is uncensored. Scanning through it quickly I think it is just for some graphic-ish violence. Consider yourself warned.