Tuesday, June 03, 2008
Requisites: Summertime Music
I could list dozens of albums to carry you through the summer months, but I figured that all you really need are six. These are some of the albums that I repeatedly go to once June rears its ugly head.
Buyaka: Ultimate Dancehall Collection I'm not a huge fan of dancehall reggae, but my freshman year roommate would play this a lot and it really takes me back to my college years. Everyone needs just one dancehall compilation in their collection and this is the one to get.
Clem Snide: Soft Spot Singer Eef Barzelay's voice is definitely an acquired taste, but this country-tinged album - ruminations on why the world is a good place, dedicated to his wife and newborn baby - is clever, low-key, and beautiful. "Summer will come with Al Green and sweetened iced tea/Summer will come and be all green with the sweetness of thee". That pretty much sums it up.
The National: Boxer These guys have produced the quintessential album to be listened to on summer nights while sitting outside and enjoying the vice of your choosing. Lush and orchestral, the music hangs in the air like the smoke of a mellow Cavendish.
The Beach Boys: Pet Sounds Really, at this point there's not much more you can say about this absolute masterpiece. For extra credit, get the boxed set and see how it all came together.
Buena Vista Social Club: Buena Vista Social Club The year this was released I bought a new grill and these elder statesmen of Cuban jazz provided the soundtrack for an entire summer of meat, vegetables, and Sweet Lady Propane.
Fountains of Wayne: Fountains of Wayne Once you're done with school, the realization that the next 40 or so summers no longer belong to you can be a hard slap in the face. Fountains of Wayne make music for us cubicle dwellers. This is the sound of throwing off the necktie and hitting the road at 5 pm.