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2011 In Review: Music (Part 2)

Welcome to Part 2 of my reflections of music in 2011! This one pays homage to the bands themselves (*new bands that really stood out to me this year over all the others) and to the people who turned me on to them (sometimes that includes myself)!

*New to me, not necessarily new to the world

Note: Clicking the image of each band will take you to their site and music. You should totally click their images to check them out!

Corruption from Heather

Even though I’ve known Heather for a couple of years now and we talk literally every day via email, chat, etc…, it wasn’t until this year that our game of music corruption really began. I honestly don’t remember exactly how it started. I think it was a song by The Hush Sound that might have been the beginning of what has been an awesome year of sharing music with her. I remember sending it to her via email because it was currently living on repeat for me and discovering that she abuses single songs just as much as me. Within a few days we’d both listened to the song so many times it was ridiculous and it spawned something wonderful. A year later and we’ve shared an uncountable amount of music with each other, almost all of which we easily fell in-love with. Sharing music is always fun, but it’s so much better to share it with someone who’s ears are so attuned to the same thing as yours! Of all the bands Heather has turned me onto the two that consistently get the most plays are:

Sick Puppies

According to Heather, the first two songs she ever sent me were “Survive” and “The Bottom” because they’re her favorites. I just know that I loved Sick Puppies so much based on just those songs that I pretty much pestered her until she sent me more. As you saw in my previous music post that I loved this band enough to make one of their tracks the most played track of the year. If I had posted the top twenty most played tracks of the year five of them would have been Sick Puppies songs. I’d say that says a lot about how much I ended up loving this band this year!

                    

RED

When I was growing up, I was into quite a few Christian rock bands, but for a while there the sound just wasn’t compatible to the other rock music I listened to and I stopped giving it a shot. So, I was surprised when Heather introduced me to this band and I fell in-love with their sound instantly, to then discover that they were a Christian rock band. I guess religious rock has made a comeback? It doesn’t really matter that they’re a Christian group, but I have to admit that the lyrics of their songs move me a little more than most and I love how they can so cleverly weave those powerful words into a sound that’s so hard and unlike most Christian music. Needless to say, this has become a band that has not only helped me write, but filled my soul with comfort when I’ve needed it most. They’re a really great band that I doubt I’ll grow tired of anytime soon.

         

Corruption from Steve

Mine and Steve’s friendship began solely because of music. Originally he was a friend of Heath’s, who heard I liked Atreyu and wanted to see if I’d heard of some of his other favorite bands. Turns out he had a heck of a lot more bands under his belt in this genre of music than I had even heard of and his influence on me was crazy-strong. Since meeting him in August, I’ve added almost 4GB of music to iTunes. That’s almost half of the entire year’s additions. I would like to say I may have equally corrupted him with some of my favorite music, but our relationship is pretty one sided unfortunately. He gives, I take. Luckily, he’s a good sport and seems to enjoy getting me into something new!  While many of the bands he’s turned me onto deserve recognition, the following two are by far my favorites:

Artifex Pereo

Very rarely does a band have such consistency for me that I can listen to anything they put out and love it all equally. Sure, I’ll still have songs I’m more drawn to and particularly based on my mood, but if I can listen to every song without skipping a track it says a lot about a band. This group qualifies as one of those rare few. While I suppose their music generally has a harder sound, they also have these brilliant moments of softness too. Their instrumentals can be beautifully complicated or perfectly simple and still amaze you. They have potential to be around for a very long time if they stick with it, in my opinion. They’ve recently acquired a new singer and I just hope he helps the band bring as much to the plate as they have before. I can’t wait for new music in the future and I truly hope I get to see a show one day!

      

Dance Gavin Dance

This band can be a bit difficult, but not because of their musical ability. They’re difficult because of the way they flip-flop singers. It’s not necessarily a bad thing. The singers they’ve featured have been equally skilled, but it leaves each album holding a noticeably different sound. Again, though, that’s not a bad thing. To me, they mix singing and screaming in a really entertaining way and their screaming isn’t so muffled that you couldn’t scream along (which happens too often unfortunately with screamer bands). This is the type of band that I imagine I’d go crazy to in a pit at a show and I really hope I get to see them live one day to test this theory.

          

Rediscovered Bands

Sometimes I have a tendency to forget about bands I love. I blame this partly on the fact that I don’t listen to the radio and rely greatly on others to corrupt me musically. Because of social mediums though it’s been easier to stay up to date with music I like, but before it, sometimes it was pretty easy for me to be distracted by something new and let the other bands I like fall by the wayside. This year I found a few bands I used to love again and “catching up” on all I’d missed over the year was far too fun! Reliving my memory of why I loved them before certainly won’t let me forget about them again!

Mindless Self Indulgence

Maybe the year was 2002 when I first got into MSI. I was wearing face paint a lot back then because I was “down with the clown” and MSI was a fairly popular band with the Juggalos. I wouldn’t have had to be a Juggalette, though, to like MSI. The problem was, I stopped hanging around those clown kids in 2004 and lost my connection to this semi-underground band. When I got into that The Left Rights song that was the most played track of the year last January, I felt compelled to check up on MSI and see what they’d been up to for the last few years. Turns out, it was a lot! Quickly, I just had to buy everything I’d missed and was also blessed with the re-release of Tight as Tighter this year. Needless to say, they were my favorite “rediscovered band” of the year.

         

Thrice

Thrice is one of those bands that I always liked whenever I heard them, but never actually owned anything by them which made it even easier to forget about them when I wasn’t around people who also listened to their brand of music. This year, though, Steve can take credit for re-introducing them to me and just in time, too, for their latest album. Sadly, shortly after the release of Major/Minor they announced that they’d be on hiatus for a while to enjoy their home lives. While I’m disappointed that just as I’ve acquired all of their music, they’ve left the scene, I also have a lot of respect for talented people who don’t let their talent take away from their real lives too. I’m sure they’ll be back one day and when they return, I’m confident it will be stellar!

           

Dead Bands*

Stumbling onto bands that totally rock after the fact can be fun because they usually come with a hefty load of music to keep your ears occupied. The downfall, though, is that that’s all you’ll ever get out of them. You’ll never have an opportunity to see them live, you’ll never hear new music from them, and you’ll probably never even be able to find a t-shirt or decent memorabilia unless they were super famous. That part sucks. Being dead or not, though, doesn’t mean I won’t still love them. This year’s favorite “dead bands” include:

He Is Legend

Again, Steve can take credit for turning me onto He Is Legend. In fact, the first song he ever sent me was “Do You Think of Pretty.” He had said he knew I’d like this band, without doubt, because “girls think Schuylar’s pretty vanilla.” That didn’t really have anything to do with why I ended up loving them, but it did make me laugh. Anyway, many albums later and I was hooked to He Is Legend and sad to know that they were on hiatus with no future in the works.

                      

Morningwood

I blame the fact that I had forgotten about MSI for the past couple of years on not knowing about Morningwood. I mean, the lead singer is Jimmy Urine’s wife. There’s no way if I’d stayed up to date with MSI that I would have missed out on the awesomeness that is Morningwood. In fact, finding them at all this year is completely because of rediscovering MSI. YAY for social mediums and bands pumping up their buddies! 🙂 Anyone that knows me, knows I love rocker chicks and when you’re as talented as Chantel and your band reminds me of 90’s rock, well… it’s a no brainer, I’m gonna love you.

                          

(*Apparently, despite believing both of these bands would never make a comeback all year, I’ve just recently discovered that there may be hope for them both after all! He Is Legend has already announced they will be releasing a new album in 2012 and Morningwood is currently listed as the opening band for Mindless Self Indulgence this year on tour. This makes me incredibly happy.)

Want to see if you can corrupt me musically in 2012?

I dare you. 😉

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November: On Repeat (Special Edition)

Since November was NanoWrimo month I didn’t really allow my ears to hear much outside of the playlist for my NanoNovel, Crack the Sky. Because of this I’ve decided to simply post said playlist (or at least the 10 songs with the highest play counts at the end of my NanoWrimo mania).
 
Also, if you’re interested in seeing some snippets from Crack the Sky click HERE!

Emarosa – “Breather”

He Is Legend – “Mean Shadows”

Artifex Pereo – “The Lantern & the Firefly”

Three Days Grace – “Overrated”

Thrice – “Moving Mountains”

Red – “Watch You Crawl”

Tides of Man – “Chemical Fires”

Prom Kings – “Angels”

Sharon Van Etten – “Love More”

Florence + the Machine – “Seven Devils”

Since I will most likely listen to nothing but Christmas music in December and plan to do the 25 Days of Christmas Music posts like I did last year, this will be the last On Repeat post of the year. At the end of December though, keep an eye out for my 2011 in Review posts, of which there will be more than one music themed one this year!
 
Peace – Sarah
 
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October: On Repeat

So it’s that time of the month again and October brought some new and some old bands (most of which Steve turned me on to). I guess we’ll start with bands you’ve seen me give shine to before first….

States

As I mentioned last month, their latest album came out this month and so you should have expected to see them pop up again On Repeat. In addition to buying “Room to Run” on its release date, I also bought their EP “Line ‘Em Up” and between the two albums the following tracks got a lot of love: Generation, Falling For, Can’t Explain, and Timebomb.

Another Chapter

He Is Legend

He Is Legend popped back up on my radar this month because while plotting for my NanoWrimo project I realized their sound overall fits the tone of my book so perfectly I could virtually listen to any song whether it directly related to the story or not and write to it. I imagine He Is Legend will get a lot of shine in November as well while I’m in writer-mania mode so I apologize in advance for being repetitive come November: On Repeat. Songs that got the most listens include: Stranger Danger, Decisions, Decisions, Decisions, Martini, and The Fool.

Cult of She

Now for some new additions….

Thrice
 
I’m no newbie to Thrice, but for some reason like a lot of great bands I grew up with, I owned very little of their music prior to a few months ago. With their latest album release “Major/Minor” all of their music has been living on repeat this month. Thrice is another of those bands I can see myself listening to a lot next month while I work on my NanoWrimo novel because their overall sound just fits the tone of my story. Some of the most played tracks this month include: The Messenger, The Sky Is Falling, Silhouette, Stare at the Sun, and Promises.

Blinded

Closure in Moscow
 
This band is new to me and so very easy to listen to (in my opinion)! Like the few bands I’ve already mentioned being NanoWrimo inspiration, Closure in Moscow also makes the cut. Songs that were played ad nauseam include: A Night at the Spleen, Deluge, and Vanguard.

Sweetheart

Artifex Pereo
 
This band just might be my favorite band at the moment. Whenever I made attempts to listen to something else this month, I just kept drifting back to them. Even though only one song actually fits the story I’m working on for NanoWrimo, their sound as a whole is very easy to write to and therefore they too will likely be abused just as much next month as they were this month. In an attempt to save the “featured” book song for next months On Repeat I won’t point it out and just tell you that the following can all be considered favorites: Mrs. D (Oh, the piano!), The Pendulum (especially how it changes up after 2:15 minutes!), Fool’s Errands, Devil & Water, and Edgar Suit.

Granulated Eyelids

Tides of Man
 
Sadly, I’m getting into this band after the fact and the singer has since left them, but I’ve got two albums to keep me occupied for now and that makes me happy because they’re rather awesome. It might just be me, but the singer reminds me so much of the singer from the band RUSH that whenever I’m listening to Tides of Man I feel like seeing if my dad would jam to them with me just like we jammed together to RUSH growing up. Anyway, lots of tracks got a lot of play, but the following got the most:  Descent, Only Human, and Knowing.

Statues

A Lot Like Birds
 
As much as I love Jonny Craig’s voice in Dance Gavin Dance, I also really enjoyed the time Kurt Travis spent singing for them so when I found out he released an album of his own with a fancy new band it was sort of a no brainer to give it a shot and I wasn’t let down. My current favorites include:  Truly Random Code and Orange Time Machines Care.

Sesame Street Is No Place for Me

Well that concludes this month’s On Repeat. With NanoWrimo under foot, I’m planning a sort of “Special Edition” post for November’s On Repeat. Keep an eye out for it! 😉
 
Peace – Sarah

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August: On Repeat

August was a seriously big month for music in my world. I’ve acquired and loved so much new music this month that putting together this list proved difficult, so, like I’ve done in the past when there were far more than 10 songs for the month, I’m going to list them by artist instead of just certain songs.

I’ll start with the only band I actually found on my own…

The Burning Hotels

The most played track was a song used on the BandSlam soundtrack and because I loved it so much, I went ahead and bought their two albums. I was not let down.

Other songs that lived on repeat include: “My New Romance”“Hey”“Austin’s Birthday”

Everything else in this list was introduced to me by my two favorite corrupters (one old and one new).

*OLD Corrupter* From edgyauthor (aka: Heather):

Sixx:A.M.

Sure, I’ve posted a Sixx:A.M. track before, back when I was listening to “Pray for Me” ad nauseum, but I didn’t own anything else by the band and it wasn’t until Heather sent me a track off their latest album that it made me realize it was time I should check out the rest.

Hurt

While chatting about another series of mine and sending drug themed tracks to her that I felt fit the tone of the book, she turned me on to Hurt because of this song:

I still have plenty more Hurt tracks to check out, but what I’ve heard so far is great! And that track is so great that my book quickly snatched it up for its soundtrack!

Heather left for vacation early on in the month after this and our ability to chat daily disappeared. In her absence, I buddied up with another music lover and his ability to corrupt me is so on point it blows my mind. Over 300 new songs later and I haven’t been let down once. Give that boy a gold star!

*NEW Corrupter* From Steve:

He Is Legend

This is the first song Steve sent me and 3 albums worth of He Is Legend later and I’m in love with them. While all of the songs got a lot of love, the following got just a little more than most: “That’s Nasty”“The Creature Walks”“Eating a Book”

Just Like Vinyl

A band so good that every track on the album could potentially be a favorite. A band so great it sucks that there is only one album so far, BUT another is in the works which is happy news for anyone as in love with them as me! Most played was the first song he sent me:

Other songs that were played an insane amount include: “Cardiac Harassment” and “Death of a Sheep”

The Fall of Troy

Technically I already knew this band. I totally destroy “F.C.P.R.E.M.I.X.” on Guitar Hero and the band has always interested me, but I was foolish in not owning anything more than a handful of songs before.

Other songs that would not leave my ears… “The Dark Trail”“Quarter Past”“Chapter IV: Enter the Black Demon”

Emarosa

What can I say about this band? What do I really even have to say? Jonny Craig’s voice is like “sex on a stick” and well the music is just the perfect backdrop for such a voice.

You want more? Yeah, I did too and I listened to the following almost as many times as the embedded track. “Heads or Tails? Real or Not?”“A City Called Coma: Pt 2”“Pretend. Relive. Regret.”

So sad this band is no more, but…. At least there’s….

Dance Gavin Dance

Okay, so yeah, they’re definitely heavier, but such a wonderful clash of screaming and Jonny Craig. This bands name just totally suits them, in my opinion. I want to dance (or jump around at least) whenever I hear them!

Other fun songs you should check out include: “And I Told them I invented Times New Roman”“Spooks”“Uneasy Hearts weigh the Most” (which actually has a different singer)

Chiodos

This band sadly kicked their singer out and will no longer be as great as the songs I’m going to share. The new stuff isn’t terrible and something will probably pop up in next month’s post, but it’s just not the same. Their use of both the piano and violin in such “hard” music just amazes me.

Other songs that got lots of love: “If I cut my hair, Hawaii will sink”“Lexington. (Joey Pea-Pot With A Monkey Face)”“Bulls Make Money, Bears Make Money, Pigs Get Slaughtered”

*Their ridiculously long titles amuse me.*

Of Mice & Men

A band I wasn’t totally sure I liked initially, but with a few more listens I suddenly found myself picking favorites!

Other tracks played ad nauseum include: “My Understandings”“Second & Sebring”

Honestly, there is so much more music I’ve been turned onto in the last month, but since I haven’t stopped listening to any of it, I’ll let it bleed into September. I don’t foresee my corrupters cutting back anytime soon. I think they enjoy their musical power over me and I’m totally fine with that!

Until the next time,
Sarah

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