It’s gone from beautiful and mild to beautiful and chilly here in Chicago and I’m spending the day drinking tea at the Starbucks around the corner from my apartment. There’s an older disheveled gentleman, who I literally just saw picking his nose, wearing a bright orange shirt and a fannypack. I keep getting distracted by him because he is making loud phone calls that sound like this, “Hello, Archduke? They won’t fix my car!” I could probably observe him and be entertained for days. So, I’ll try to multitask and do my best to keep my gag reflex in check now that I’ve seen him shake someone’s hand with the same one he used to go digging for gold in his nose.
File Under: Boy/girl folk pop From: Indiana (actually, I think all or most of them went to the same college as mah boo.) For Fans of: A much folkier Tilly and the Wall, anything I’ve heard Haley Williams sing acoustically, Guster, dating seriously in college, Ben Folds’ sadder songs, Magnetic Fields, thin leather bracelets or necklaces with one artsy bead you either picked up at an art fair or made yourself at summer camp or an elective class, sensitive lesbros. Bonus: The four-piece just released a new EP, Sincerely, Yours, which they are making available to download for free via their Bandcamp page. Apparently they’re also going to be releasing one free song to download every two weeks. That’s right, Christmas is coming early this year. Also, oddly enough, their cute little drummer, Bianca, kind of looks like my girlfriend. There must be something about Muncie, Indiana!
File Under: Jazzy soul pop that is so special I almost can’t take it From: London For Fans of: Jill Scott, Corinne Bailey Rae, Sade, wearing scarves as an accessory, a great cup of coffee, Laura Marling, Feist, India Arie, vintage-chic outerwear, candlelit baths, seduction. Bonus: My girl Adri has blown my mind once again! Listening to Lianne gives me butterflies in my tummy. It looks like if you’re lucky enough, you may be able to catch her on tour with Bon Iver this winter. Check out her gorgeous duet with Willy Mason, “No Room For Doubt.”
From: The UK For Fans of: Bat for Lashes, Austra, a darker-sounding Lily Allen, masquerade parties, the vampires from Anne Rice novels, Dana Jade, vocally a bit like Florence Welch, a less electronic Class Actress, Frankenberry cereal. Bonus: I came across their music a bit accidentally via Soundcloud, but I’m so excited that I did and I’m hoping their live shows are as impressive as I find their music.
From: Japan For Fans of: Avril Lavigne, VersaEmerge, disappointing your parents with your college major, Hey Monday, Manic Panic hair dye, collecting guitar picks. Bonus: The band was formed while all four of the girls were in their first year of high school. I really wish my parents had let me take the drums when I was younger instead of forcing me into the trumpet.
File Under: An experimental folk rock group I’ve been meaning to write about for probably two years From: Norway For Fans of: Ditty Bops “Moon Over The Freeway”-era, The Shondes, Amanda Palmer, making a party wherever you are, carnies (not necessarily the carnivals themselves), Ripley’s Believe it or Not, acrobats, Victorian garb. Bonus: The ladies are giving away a free track via their Facebook page, so make sure you pick it up. Thank you to all of you lovely readers who have emailed me to remind me to write about them (and there are many of you).
That’s it for this week and I think this round-up is pretty stellar! Enjoy the rest of your week and if you aren’t afraid of a little colorful language, feel free to follow me on Twitter, Facebook and check out what I’m listening to on Spotify!