“I Don’t Live Here Anymore” – The War on Drugs with Lucius
The title track from the upcoming TWOD LP. It is the brightest, shiniest, poppiest track the band has ever done. Naturally I love it. Lucius provides a very nice vocal assist.

“This Enchanted” – Hatchie
Harriet Pilbeam recently signed with Indiana label Secretly Canadian, and this is her first single on that imprint. Like just about everything else she’s done, it’s pure magic.

“Tell Me” – Spectres
I’m not sure what generation of post punk we are on now – at least the fourth, right? – but as long as people keep making music that sounds like this, I’ll keep listening to it.

“Around Again” – Hovvdy
Technically it is still summer, at least from an astronomical point of view. So this song, which sounds like late summer distilled into audio form, is still relevant.

“Fear and Trembling” – Gang of Youths
GoY lead singer David Le’aupepe gave a lengthy interview to Steven Hyden at Uproxx about the state of the band and where they are in the process of recording their next album. Apparently the EP they released earlier this year was a very early teaser, and a full-length release is not imminent. Reading this piece made me go back and listen to their 2017 album Go Farther In Lightness, and reminded me how great this, the opening track, is.

“Escapade” – Janet Jackson
You all know how I can A) remember all kinds of stupid facts surrounding songs that are decades old and B) occasionally get fixated on those old memories. Well, that happened to me over the past few days.

I mentioned last week how “Black Velvet” was the trigger. Normally, when I have these old memory bursts, I can live with them for a bit and then move on quickly. But something about that song and the priming of my brain for memories from that same time got me stuck in a memory loop that lasted five or six days. It was really weird. No matter what I did to distract myself, memories of my freshman year of college kept overwhelming me.

That happens from time-to-time. But it is usually a short-term thing. This just kept going on-and-on. Monday morning, for example, I thought I had turned the page. Then I went to the gym, fired up my Spotify gym playlist, and three of the first four songs were from the spring semester of my freshman year. I was starting to get freaked out; the music algorithms were now part of whatever was forcing me to remain fixated on these memories.

I tried to figure out why this kept happening. Obviously, some of it came from reading The Number Ones, which has been working up those memories for several weeks. I wondered, too, if it was just because I haven’t thought of my first year of college in great detail in years. So perhaps some of it was just revisiting some unfamiliar memories?

I wondered if there was someone I knew back then who was in some kind of distress and sending out psychic messages to anyone they knew at the time asking for help that I was picking up on.

I also wondered if maybe this was my brain’s way of telling me it was getting ready to purge these memories, and wanted to give me one, last intense experience reviewing them by flooding me with them over several days.

The first explanation is the best, the second two don’t really make sense. I’m being honest, though, when I say it was very unnerving that this experience was so powerful and lasted so long.

Anyway, I listened to Janet Jackson’s Rhythm Nation 1814 the other day because 1) it was a great, great album and 2) if I’m going to be stuck in that memory loop, I might as well have some control over it. It is still a great, great album filled with terrific tracks. This one is the greatest. I’m not sure it’s possible to hear it and not be happy instantly.