This song is really a modern definition of what the holidays and more specifically Christmas is supposed to be about and the things we are really celebrating. It’s not a traditional song by any means, but it has become a classic in my mind because I always look to it as my favorite during this time of year. It discusses the warmth and cheer we all feel on this day and how nice it would be if everyday could be just as great. Everyone throws away their doubts, fears, grudges, and stresses to celebrate one day. I could describe everything in the song, but everything sung has a very literal meaning and Frightened Rabbit truly captures the magic of the Christmas spirit and the realization that outside this time of year is the real life and the shitty things we have to deal with, but during this time things truly seem like they are perfect because you are spending very genuine time with people who appreciate your company as much as you appreciate theirs. Feel free to share a favorite of yours and why you enjoy it so much and in the spirit of the holidays and Christmas enjoy this song and may this season be something spectacular and uplifting for you because there isn’t another time of the year that’s like it…Merry Christmas!
2009, Freshman in college walking to my general studies 101 class. The free iTunes recommended playlist for March had just freshly been put onto the iPod and it was on shuffle. After listening to a couple of songs that are not remembered to this day without going back and looking at the playlist, I heard the mumbling of a man who then turned into a carefully plucked electric acoustic guitar followed by the grizzled yet smooth as molasses sounding voice of Tom Brosseau. The beat of the drum much like that of a military march. Almost skipping along to the song on my way to the class and then the almost island sounding electric guitar came in halfway through the song and it was official the song was instantly a classic in my mind forever. None of Brosseau’s other work has stuck with me, even though his voice and songwriting are excellent this one just seemed to stick. I find myself replaying the song multiple times every two to three months. It still is to this day the only song I have by Tom, but it will always remain as one of my favorites of all time so in saying this I hope it remains with you for a very long time as well…
If you like this you might also like : Dead Man’s Bones, Ben Howard, Patrick Watson
Just wanted to let all of our followers know that earlier today I was hacked and it sent and ad out to all of our followers. The problem has been solved, but please disregard this email and as always. Sit back and relax on the Seafoam Couch!
My brother Chad Houseman just put out a new record under the moniker “Tom Hymn”.
“I pull my covers up over myself and my cat, we try to sleep through the night, but I kept waking up with pictures in my head, I kept waking up with fright.”
Aslan the cat is magical, much like the lyrics that stream through New Mexican New Year. And much like the free and spirited Aslan who seems to always cast out and hook for attention, Tom Hymn entices the audience to listen and to paint a picture of what magic is being presented in front of them.
The story telling in New Mexican New Year reminds me of some of the greats such as David Bazan, Mason Jennings, The Tallest Man On Earth, or even Neil Young. It’s all very real feeling. Tom Hymn is not afraid to go beyond the surface and swim into rough waters. He tells it how it is, no lies, no holding back. “But all circles come back round and new beginnings to be found..”. There is a hope of happiness and love in his lyrics and a realization of sadness that comes with this life. “We need more conversation on porches and a world less mean”. We do need more conversation on porches especially with rocking chairs and good company. The clever lyrics help to build the listener’s own stories and to project images as if one were sitting in a theater watching their own life on the blue screen.
All in all New Mexican New Year will make you feel something. It’s a change from the daily grind of what is a lot of the new music coming out that passes through the fingers like sand lost on the beach.
Chad Houseman plays drums with the band The MuteFlutes and is a friend and ex member of the band The Soil And The Sun in which he also played drums.
When I first thought of writing about this, it was originally only going to be about the song “Architects And Engineers” by Guster. This however would not do the Safety Not Guaranteed soundtrack justice or would it be true to writing about my own typical discovery of music because the soundtrack has some pretty great pickins as far as licensed tracks are concerned. The original composition for the film done by Ryan Miller is actually very good as well featuring folky guitar with some vibrant bells and strings. It does a very good job as it reminds me of being on a road trip in the woods which the film takes place mostly in the woods/on a beach. The main highlights here are; “Big Machine”, “Architects and Engineers”, and “She’s Bound to Get Hurt.” The Mark Duplass sung/Ryan Miller written song “Big Machine” really encompasses what we all eventually want in life and that is even as we are all moving along in our mostly routine lives full of love, loss, memories, friends, jobs etc., we all want someone or something, but rarely do we reach out for it. The song is a call to action and seeing as Mark Duplass has roots in the indie rock scene with his band Volcano, I’m Still Excited! his emotion instilled in the song does it great justice. “Architects and Engineers” by Guster discusses similar circumstances, but more so talks about how we are all flying through life and occasionally we need to stop and reflect on the special moments we have in our life and cherish them because they don’t seem to ever last as long as we’d like them to. Listening to this song I am constantly reminded of the montage that takes place in the film during the song and my mind always goes back to the moment when Jake Johnson is drunk riding around depressed on a Go-Kart. It’s sort of an ironic moment, but I can relate to the idea of having so much going for you and also being depressed about the things you don’t have yet. Lastly, “She’s Bound to get Hurt” by Summer Fiction talks about letting go of something you love and regretting it later on. The song doesn’t connect as well, but I foresee it hitting home at some point in my life and the vocal vibrato and crescendos and decrescendos flow smoothly enough to make the song noteworthy. The film itself does not leave an initial impression, but it does leave a lingering one because beyond the wild imaginative plot we all would love to jump and take a big risk on something we believe in and I think that is the heart of this film and these songs…Enjoy!
You ever hear a song, and it just sticks with you, becomes your environment, and no matter where you are down the road when you hear those songs it brings you back to how you were feeling when you first heard that unique rift, or just some catching lyrics to a blissful beat? For the last month I have been listening to two albums back to back without switching songs, and just letting it play. Benjamin Gibbard’s new solo album “Former Lives”, blends smoothly with Oberhofer’s “Time Capsules ll”. This should not be surprising considering both Gibbard and Brad Oberhofer have roots from the greater Northwest in Washington. Some of my favorites off of Gibbards record include; Bigger Than Love, which has some Death Cab sound echoing all over it. Duncan, Where Have You Gone, reminds me of an old Beatles melody, and I’m Building A Fire, reminds you of All Time Quarterback a little. Bringing the wide range of Benjamin Gibbard into a single album. A little bit faster, but still a very mellow somber feeling sound, Oberhofer reminds me a bit of the Futureheads with their harmonizing vocals. My instant favorites off of Time Capsules II are: Heart, I Could Go, and Landline. Together these two albums make an instant genius playlist. I hope you enjoy.
It is only appropriate that on the night before election night a film about revolution is mentioned. The film is V for Vendetta and if you haven’t seen it before it’s suggested you do. It is about change for the better and one man/symbol representing an entire nation. I believe the next four years will bring about lots of change for better or worse, but lets hope its better. When the film first had released a trailer over six years ago there was a song featured that was very emotional and it has remained with myself for all these years. It is the song “I Found A Reason” by Cat Power. It is a song that talks about the idea and belief of hope. This is something I have always held on to..hope…if you don’t have it in the most dire of times then you are truly lost and I have always believed in it for this reason. The song is about going on and fighting in these dire times that life presents us with and that’s why on this day, the 5th of November that we shall remember that I talk about this song. So go out and vote and believe that there is hope for the next four years, enjoy the film if you have not yet seen it, and enjoy the song and let it inspire you!