On Twitter I share links each day to various stuff that I think is great and/or worth people’s time. But not everyone that comes here is on Twitter, so I gather up the best of those links each Monday and post them here so everyone can get in on the fun. If you’ve missed any of the past Monday links (or just want to waste some time), check the archive of posts here. Enjoy.
You should head over to Cover Lay Down immediately. Why? Because they’ve collected 18 of Sam Beam’s (Iron & Wine) best covers and made them available to download. There is just so, so much goodness in there, including my two favorite covers from Mr. Beam (‘Always On My Mind’ and ‘All Tomorrow’s Parties,’ both with help from Calexico). Seriously, just go get it now.
Two other things you should go download ASAP: Jess’s (from New Music Collaborative) Where Summer Begins mix and Natalie’s (from It’s Too Sunny Out Here) May 2012 mixtape. Both are insanely good and will make your ears very, very happy.
Mid-Year ‘Best Of’ lists have started rolling out in droves. You’ll see one here at some point (maybe this week, maybe next) but until then go ahead and check out NPR’s Mid-Year Albums and Songs lists. Mine won’t look very much like those, but they are fun to look and listen through nonetheless.
Speaking of favorite songs of the year, ‘Marathon Runner’ by Yellow Ostrich will probably show up on mine (because it is awesome). Here’s a lovely acoustic take on it that the band did for Big Ugly Yellow Couch a few months back.
Fort Frances released their cover of Daniel Johnston’s ‘Mind Movies’ last week. It is lovely. Take a listen (and download for free, because they are generous- use the little downward arrow to take advantage of that).
We are slightly less than a month away from the July 17th release of the debut album from Milo Greene, a record I’m more than excited to hear. Last week the band unleased ‘Take A Step,’ a dreamy, shimmering little number that’s the first release from the album that wasn’t part of the brilliant ‘Hello Sessions’ that the band posted last year (and which are, unfortunately, no longer online).
Your weekly ‘this has nothing to do with music but is awesome’ piece: Deadspin pretty much sums up all my grievances with ESPN’s coverage of…everything, basically.
A few bulleted items, because I can’t come up with a paragraph for each but they are all worth your time:
- If you’ve read any ‘think pieces’ on the internet from people who consider themselves ‘serious music bloggers’ you will know that the criticism leveled by the recently re-launched Tympanogram is all spot on.
- Billy Corgan is a pretty…divisive… figure, to say the least, but even his biggest detractors can’t deny that he makes all sorts of sense in this Mashable interview on what musicians need to do to succeed long-term in today’s world.
- NPR intern Emily White wrote a piece over the weekend about the fact she has rarely bought music thus far in her life. David Lowery of The Trichordist wrote an response outlining why she should change that behavior that going forward. Edit: Here’s a great piece from Another Rainy Saturday that takes a level-headed look at both the original and Lowery’s response, concluding that we’re all just trying to figure out how to make the system fair (and that maybe we should stop pointing fingers, which is true). NPR also weighs back in and points out that this whole debate isn’t new (and won’t be going away soon until all sides- consumers, artists and labels- can figure out how to be fair with each other).
- This piece from The Guardian takes a look at whether someone might ever be too old for pop music. The obvious answer, in my opinion, is no- we can never have enough well-written, well-played songs. ‘Pop’ doesn’t just refer to what’s on the radio.
This video of Le Wrens playing ‘Chair Song’ in a windowsill is absolutely gorgeous. Enjoy.