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The Music of 2009: Second Quarter

I know you've all been waiting on PINS AND NEEDLES for this, so never fear, your window into the musical portion of my brain is here!  Without delay, come find out what I've been listening to as spring rolled into summer.  Also, this icon is relevant.  I just want to point that out.

First quarter was here, if you'd like to flip back; otherwise charge on ahead.

Once again, you can find all the songs in a separate (locked) entry here, for download or simple streaming purposes (this format seems to be working for me, aside from the headache involved with posting the widget) Said entry will be backdated, so this post will be the only way to reach it if you rely solely on your friends page for reading LJ.

Boy, there are a lot of links in this post.

April
22. Taylor Swift – You’re Not Sorry
Could've loved you all my life if you hadn't left me waiting in the cold
I mentioned this one last month, but now I feel like the original version deserves recognition in its own right, because I’m so very in love with the emotion-laden piano & violin music, and I’ve listened to it more times tha the remix by this point.

23. Counting Crows – Hard Candy
You send your lover off to China and you wait for her to call
You put your girl up on a pedestal and you wait for her to fall
These lyrics were the epigraph on an O.C. fic several years ago, and for some reason I finally got the urge to look up the song. Usually amazing lyrics by bands disappoint me in context, but this is a really nice story-telling piece, without being somber – love the upbeat swing.

24. Hodges – My Side of the Story
Hold on, don’t turn and walk away
Save me
I cried these words, and nobody came
(No, not that Hodges, although it does sound like a good title for the blog I’m secretly convinced he has) Another rec from muzzy-olorea, it took a few listens but now I’m quite fond of the music. Although, thanks to some unfortunate timing re: the week I fell in love with it, it’s inextricably linked with Kutner’s suicide in my head.

25. Isabelle Boulay – Parle-Moi
Je ne sais plus comment t’aimer
Ni comment te garder

I have a few of her songs already, so when I wandered by her Wikipedia page and a random title caught my eye, I went to have a listen. She always has such pretty ballads.

26. Blink-182 - Adam's Song
I never thought I’d die alone
Another six months I’ll be unknown
Their existence in my library vaguely horrifies me. But I tripped over the lyrics in a random LJ post, and they bowled me over enough to brave what I was sure would be terrible rock music. And, well, it's not nearly as blaring as I expected. It's even maybe ridiculously head-nodding and catchy, for a song about suicide. Besides, NAME IN THE TITLE + TELLS A STORY = my love and adoration.

27. Wolfmusic – Journey’s End
Now she dreams of water, and ocean tides
Three guesses how I found this song…but what are the odds I’d love it so much? I do recommend that video; it’s the perfect complement. The song itself reminds me of America (the band) – like throwback folk music. Very mellow and dreamy.

28. Powderfinger – Nobody Sees
Nobody sees how our hearts break
I can almost guarantee this wouldn’t have caught my ear if it hadn’t been used for that spectacular Ten II/Rose video. But it was, and thus it sank into my head. Can’t explain why; it’s just addictively mellow. In a more adult contemporary style than the previous song.

May
29. Taylor Swift – Hey Stephen
Hey Stephen, why are people always leavin’
I think you and I should stay the same
Working my way through her “Fearless” CD might be a year-long process, but Stephen was my favorite contestant on Survivor, so it seemed an appropriate time to try this on for size. In no time at all, Taylor’s Midas touch had worked again. So catchy!  And suddenly one of my most-played songs.

30. Murray Gold – The Carrionites Swarm
A year ago, some tracks on the Doctor Who s.3 soundtrack got left off my MP3 player because the whole thing wouldn’t fit, and then I forgot about them until recently. I avoided this one for a long time due to its terrible name – finally I renamed it “Shakespeare’s Tempest” in my music library, and that fixed everything. It’s very epic, like something off the Pirates of the Caribbean soundtrack.

31. Maria Mena – Our Battles
I can no longer apologize for your former lover’s mistakes
Finally curious about the phrase “broken poetry” on my Samantha icon (SEE, RELEVANCE), I looked it up to see if it belonged to a set of lyrics. And what do you know, it’s from my old staple!  Like most of her songs, it took a couple listens to adjust to her fairly thin voice – but then it fell into place and I remembered why her choruses stick in your head.  Love this singer.

32. Murray Gold – Life Among the Distant Stars
Included as a closing track on the same-titled Ten/Rose fanmix I’ve been talking up at every opportunity and finally got a chance to listen to, this was my first taste of the Doctor Who soundtrack that would later dominate June. When I’m not being destroyed by its haunting, heartbreaking context in the finale, I adore the slow piano and beautiful flute solo, from its opening fall of quiet notes to its thrilling flourish. Also, how can you turn down a title like that?

33. Darren Hayes - So Beautiful
They can have their universe
We’ll be in the dirt designing stars
Also off the fanmix, once I got around to hearing the ones that had lyrics, this became my early favorite. Pretty sure it’s thanks entirely to that lyric…although his very pleasant voice helps it along. I don’t think I gave Savage Garden enough credit back in the day.

34. The Feeling – Kettle’s On
Can’t you see you’re in the wrong place,
Will you please face it and come home?
Last off the fanmix for now, it shouldn’t be my type, but the opening beats of this are irresistible. The lilting beat pattern after that is similarly impossible to resist, despite its distinctly bluesy tempo, and now I love the cozy little tune to pieces.

35. “Glee” Cast – Don’t Stop Believin’
Just a city boy, born and raised in south Detroit
He took the midnight train going anywhere

Because this rendition of the Journey classic is actual magic wrapped up in song. Anyone who denies its power obviously has something wrong with them.

June
36. Natasha Bedingfield – Soulmate
Somebody tell me why I’m on my own
If there’s a soulmate for everyone
First heard on Medium, it’s a lot starker and more haunting than I expected from the generally upbeat singer.

37. Band of Horses – No One’s Gonna Love You
We are the ever-living ghost of what once was
The closing song on the Numb3rs season finale, it wrapped itself around my brain without my consent and forced me to love it. Seriously, I have always avoided indie bands like this that are so popular with the college folk, but I think I’m starting to like this sort of nostalgic, throwback-folk sound. To the point where it's my favorite lyric-including song of the month.  (WHAT DID I TELL YOU.  THROWING OVER THE FEMALE SINGER-SONGWRITERS IN FAVOR OF RANDOM BANDS.)

38. Lady Gaga - Poker Face
Russian roulette is not the same without a gun
Stupid So You Think You Can Dance! It infected me with literally only ten seconds of music.  Being used for a Dollhouse fanvid spurred things along.   I have no reasons or excuses for why I can’t stop listening to this, other than the feeble one that, um, the lyrics aren't as vulgar or distasteful as most dance anthems tend to be?  Which makes it better than Flo Rida, at least. 

39. Kelly Clarkson – Already Gone
We were always meant to say goodbye
SYTYCD kind of redeems itself here, using this as 2009’s farewell song for the eliminated girls. I’d been feeling pretty “blah” about her CD prior to this, but now at least I’ve got one track worth listening to. (Even though I’m not sure I approve of the message in general, now that I look at the lyrics. Crap.)

40. Dixie Chicks – Lullaby
They didn't have you where I come from
Never knew the best was yet to come
Just what the title promises, dreamy and drifting. So light and pretty. Courtesy of Medium, again, it’s permanently Joe/Allison in my head.
---------------
Murray Gold: Doctor Who, series 4 soundtrack:
Yep, I chose a whopping 9 songs off one CD.  Which is totally okay because it comes with at least two dozen, so this is less than half! 

41. The Sybilline Sister
hood
Used for an episode set in the last days of Pompeii, aside from the opening chants it sounds a lot like the music used for the dinosaur stories in “Fantasia” – evokes prehistoric images.

42. Songs of Captivity and Freedom
I debated whether to include this at all, but it was one of the first tunes that caught my ear. Forlorn and haunting to start, more positive at the end and relying largely on an operatic female vocalist, parts of it sound like the sort of thing you might hear at a Latin church service. Only prettier and less boring than that description implies.

43. The Source
Such a humble, unassuming title. Which the music reflects, with nothing particularly grandiose or epic or striking, and yet it’s such a pleasant, peaceful and slightly mysterious melody that I find it memorable. Some pretty low-register flute soloing in there; that’s always a plus.

44. The Unicorn and the Wasp
Quirky little 20’s-sounding piece, perfect for an Agatha Christie setting - cycling through all kinds of moods & saxophone from plucky and investigative flute/clarinet to merry bells to strings of trepidation to bluesy saxophone.

45. Voyage of the Damned Suite
At over 10 minutes, I initially thought it was too long. Then I realized, it’s a suite, and as an orchestra piece it works perfectly well, with so much going on and so many melody changes that I stopped noticing the length and it’s become one of my favorites. Brassy opening, several strains of familiar melodies in there, haunting vocals…I love it all!  For the record, this is much better than the episode in which it was used.

46. All in the Mind
Short, cute little Celtic-sounding pennywhistle piece. It’s so happy I can’t help wanting to dance a little whenever I hear it.

47. The Greatest Story Never Told
Debated including this one as well, and am only doing so because I didn’t include as many Gold tracks as I should have last summer. Wants to be more epic than it is (the choir only bogs it down, in my opinion – let the strings and winds do their work!), but the last two minutes make up for the first four?

48. A Dazzling End
And lastly, for my very favorites of all: this one, someone compared to "Doomsday," and while it's not that sad, it has a touch of the same magnitude and finality to it, especially as it picks up the pace and adds layers of harmonies as the piece goes on.  It reminds me of the opening segment on a military suite, a big, brave-sounding overture.

49. The Rueful Fate of Donna Noble
And this one, much more somber, which I mainly love for the (for lack of a better term) "Wild West" echoes that open it.  Always brings to mind a dark, windswept night in the middle of nowhere.  And the rest is just bittersweet.  Probably more so if you know the context, but I like to think it'd have a sad effect either way.
 

P.S. This has nothing to do with anything, but you know you want to vote in the last round of nominee polls at Television Without Pity, don't you?  I mean, for example, there are just so many Egregiously Offensive Reality Shows that you can't go wrong in that category. 

Comments

( 2 comments — Leave a comment )
eleigh
Jul. 2nd, 2009 03:47 pm (UTC)
I love "Already Gone". It might be my favorite song on her new cd. That and "If No One Will Listen" purely for "if no one is left standing after the bombs explode" lyric.
aries11
Jul. 2nd, 2009 05:48 pm (UTC)
All I keep hearing about is the "Glee" cast singing "Don't Stop Believin'". I've never even seen the show, but I might have to watch that clip on YouTube, just so I don't feel totally out of the loop anymore.
( 2 comments — Leave a comment )

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