Top Ten As A Teen: The List Sensation That’s Sweeping The Nation (On Facebook)

January 14, 2017 Leave a comment

I’m always leery of lists that pop up on Facebook. Any time someone posts something that starts or ends with “Copy this post and share” or something similar it’s generally ignored on my end. This one felt a bit different, though. I actually learned something about my “friends” on social media: We all pretty much listened to the same stuff growing up.

We didn’t all list the same ten records, but every list I saw, I thought “Yeah I listened to that a bunch, too.” So it was fun and I’m going to share mine with you here. I’ll also do ten movies from that time that have stayed with me as well.

Counting Crows-August & Everything After

Fiona Apple-Tidal

Bob Dylan-Bringing It All Back Home

The Rolling Stones-Exile On Main Street

Jonny Lang-Lie To Me

Hootie & The Blowfish-Cracked Rear View


Tom Petty-Wildflowers

Stevie Wonder-Songs In The Key Of Life

The Wallflowers-Bringing Down The Horse

Oasis-Definitely, Maybe

There’s a lot of other stuff I would say I listened to a lot when I was a teen that I don’t really listen to anymore: Live-Throwing Copper, En Vogue-Funky Divas, Candlebox-S/T, Snoop Doggy Dogg-Doggystyle…the list is endless, honestly. Siamese Dream by Smashing Pumpkins would be on there too (one of the first cassettes I ever bought).

I was into music as a teen, but not as much as I am now. I actually found myself much more fascinated by film. I tried to see as many classics as I could and, at one point, attempted to watch everything on IMDB’s top 250. Of course, I didn’t take into account that as new movies come out the list changes (also that a lot of boring people really love Shawshank Redemption).

L.A. Confidential

The Big Lebowski

Boogie Nights

Life Is Beautiful

Pulp Fiction


Jerry Maguire

Dark City

Wayne’s World

Dumb & Dumber

And here’s a list of movies people my age loved that I hated: Empire Records, Varsity Blues, Billy Madison, Fear And Loathing In Las Vegas, Kids, The Craft, Romy & Michelle’s High School Reunion

Ezra Furman + The Boy-Friends at Lincoln Hall 1/12/2017

January 13, 2017 Leave a comment

I’ve already seen Ezra Furman twice this year. Last week he was solo at Space in Evanston, and last night he was joined by his band for a headlining set at Lincoln Hall. While they were completely different experiences, one thing ties them together: Furman’s mindblowing ability to captivate in either setting. In total I’ve seen him over a dozen times, and I can’t wait for a dozen more. If you haven’t caught a show yet, you need to remedy that immediately.

Weaves at Lincoln Hall 1/12/2017

January 13, 2017 Leave a comment

Last night Toronto’s Weaves hit the stage at Lincoln Hall for Tomorrow Never Knows festival. They brought with them the energy we’ve come to expect from Ontario’s better rock bands (July Talk, Strumbellas, Arkells). I hadn’t heard the band before, and I was impressed with how taken the crowd was with their music. Lead singer Jasmyn Burke does possess a certain magnetic characteristic, and her leave it all on the floor attitude makes for great entertainment. At the end of the show she came out to the middle of the floor and got the audience to get down with her for half a song before she and guitarist Morgan Waters leapt up and made their way dancing back to the stage.

Slowdive Release New Music

January 12, 2017 Leave a comment

Photo by Ingrid Pop

I was surprised to see “Slowdive Returns” in my inbox this morning. If they’re just now returning, who did I see at Pitchfork in 2014? Pretty sure I remember taking pictures of Rachel Goswell. 

They did put out their first new music in over 20 years, picking up pretty much where they left off in ’95. I didn’t hear of them until much later, but I’ve listened since then and I’m glad they aren’t trying to millennial-up on their new stuff. They signed to Dead Oceans and will have a new record eventually (I assume).

For fans of Slowdive, I’m happy they’re making music together again. I’m not a huge fan, personally, but “Star Roving” sounds pretty good.

The Rural Alberta Advantage-“Beacon Hill”

January 11, 2017 Leave a comment


I don’t think I’m the only RAA fan that was a little disappointed by their last record, Mended With Gold. It just didn’t hit the same emotional note for me that Hometowns and Departing had. I did see them live supporting Gold, and the show was good. So I don’t doubt the passion is still there. And then Amy left the band and I was a bit skeptical about the future possibilities of their music. In steps Robin Hatch, and I don’t think too much has changed.

The focus seems to be more tightly on Nils, which I’m fine with. “Beacon Hill” is not quite enough to convince me that they’re back in top form, but it is encouraging. It’s certainly better than “White Lights,” the first single they released from the new album. So they’re moving in the right direction. The new album, currently without title, is due out near the end of the year on Saddle Creek.

Laura Marling-“Wildire”

January 11, 2017 Leave a comment


I know a lot of people are pumped whenever Laura Marling puts out a new song. I’ve never been one of those people, but this is a good song. The vocals are outstanding and the fairly minimal approach helps keep the focus on them.

I think this next album, Semper Femina (out March 10), might actually be the one that Norah Jones has been trying to make for the last decade to get away from the image that Come Away With Me spurned. For Marling fans, it’s more of the same songbird they’ve always enjoyed. If “Wild Fire” is any indication, I might even jump on the bandwagon.

Beginning at the end of April, Marling will hit the road to promote the new album. She hits Chicago on May 7th at Metro. For more dates, hit up her website.


January 11, 2017 Leave a comment

Photo by David Miller

I heard this song a couple days ago while I was walking home from a liquor store and it hit my ears just right. Initially it reminded me of Rilo Kiley, but a couple more listens and it was more of a Fiona Apple vibe. Khodara‘s voice, mixed with the slow and sultry beat, really takes you to another place.

This is the title track off a new EP, which comes out in March. It’s a quick follow up to her debut Where’s Your Love? which just hit last month.

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