song obsession friday! (nearish Valentine’s day)

damien jurado
Damien Jurado’s “Working Titles” was my song obsession this time

Song obsessions are those songs that get stuck in your head. This series of posts isn’t about what I or the other panel members think is best, but what our brain latches onto, those ear worms that loop around and around in your head.

Adrian (me):
Damien Jurado – Working Titles (mp3) (pre-order)

I’d heard a couple tracks from the forthcoming Maraqopa and they were good, but when I heard this one (via Heather) I was in love. A waltz-time break-up song about someone writing a song about you, it swings and soars in a lovely way that reminds me of songs from the ’50s. But it also has Jurado’s keenly written lyrics; this is filled with amazing lines. “If I show up in the titles of your songs// I only hope someone requests it.”

Sprites – Follow Her Around (mp3) (buy)

Following Her Around is a tune that hits the spot for me in a lot of ways. Jangly 90’s indiepop, nostalgia for your early 20’s, and the dream of a girl with perfect taste in movies and music. Plus, any song that name drops the Karmann Ghia is alright in my book.

Great American Desert (formerly South of Lincoln) – Thirteen (mp3) (buy)

The song is old testament good. This is essentially speaks of becoming an adult at the ripe old age of 13 and haunts you with the rough and challenging life many (hopefully that of others) live. The stark acoustics and slight drawl in the vocals of Max Holmquist make this a cautionary tale of times that might not be so long lost. Oh, and it just guitar stumming just echos in my head as I play out this soundtrack of a father/son power struggle.

Delay Trees – Gold (mp3) (buy)

I heard about this finnish group when listening to NPR Music’s year end (2011) wrap-up and made note of them, but didn’t listen more until a couple weeks ago. I’m now a bit obsessed with this whole album actually, but the lead-off track really stands out. ‘Gold’ has a perfect build, rising to a soaring, Explosions in The Sky-esque peak, then releasing suddenly and transitioning smoothly into the second track. It must be the combination of pop and post-rock that really gets me, because I just keep hitting repeat.

Blouse – Into Black (mp3) (buy)

First heard this one on a PDX Now! compilation and now that their debut album is out it’s official that this track is the retro-gothy standout. The bass guitar riff mates mouth-watering flavor with a downbeat tempo and even more importantly resists the temptation to dominate the proceedings, giving way to a glossy chorus that provides a precisely uplifting counterpoint.

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