Tag Archives: song of the week
I know I’ve been sharing a lot of covers lately, but I truly, madly, deeply love this man. Seeing him perform this song at the Shoe last year was one of the most beautiful live music experiences I’ve ever had. I could easily share a whole bunch of his own songs, as he is insanely talented – but this cover just does something else for me.
He transforms Randy Newman’s jarring piano ballad into the sweetest, most comforting song you’d ever need to hear on a bad day.
His voice also might be my favourite musical instrument in play these days.
If you’ve got music in your heart
You have made a real good start
The love of music never will desert you
Last night I had the true pleasure of seeing this lovely lady live for the first time. Sad to admit she’s one of those names I had always heard but never paid attention to, placing her in the ‘probably too CanRock for me’ category just by way of associated acts. The Rootstock show I was reviewing last night only reaffirmed that unfair categorization, placing her in between Steven Page, formerly of Barenaked Ladies fame, and Alan Doyle of Great Big Sea (someone I would normally avoid ever seeing).
Of course, as soon as she opened her mouth to start singing, I realized how far off I was. I was immediately blown away by the sheer tone and beauty of her voice. The most famous pop stars of today only wish they had a vocal as captivating and original as hers.
Making the night even better was how she described her songwriting process, and how she came to write the beautiful songs she sang. This one particularly struck a chord with me as I tried to hold back tears, making it the perfect choice for song of the week.
Give it a listen:
This might be the best cover I’ve ever heard. Forget what I said about not liking the electronic singer/songwriter trend. If it means they are capable of reinterpretations as beautiful and impressive as this, I’m all for it.
If you’re gonna cover a very famous song, make sure it sounds as new and creative as she makes this Nirvana mega hit.
Sometimes Rdio playlists throw me a song from a band I for some reason never really got into, but should have. This Deer Tick song is a perfect example of that. I do a lot of skipping on Rdio playlists, but as soon as the folky guitar melody began I put my phone away to let it play. Then the lyrics came in and I was instantly obsessed.
I am the boy your mother wanted you to meet
But I am broken and torn with halos at my feet
And with your purest light why don’t you shine on me
Well I should have been an angel
But I’m too dumb to speak
I loved that first paragraph so much I completely interpreted it as a song about never feeling good enough for the person you love, only to get home, google it, read the full lyrics and realize its tragedy goes far beyond just that feeling.
I’ve never read or heard a more poetic description of the futilities of love. How it can drive good people mad, capable of things that land them on an episode of Dateline. Love brings out the best and the worst in people. This song is like the male version of Feist’s “The Bad In Each Other.”
That first person description of being slain by your love but with your last breaths forgiving them is one of the most beautiful and heartbreaking things I’ve ever experienced. Incredible songwriting.
I’m caught in a whirlwind
I’m going to heaven
I’m standing on trial and it’s painted on canvas
An eternal testament to how we are so animalistic
Gotta thank a friend for tipping me off on this one. I’m not normally a fan of this electronic singer songwriter (aka indietronica) domination that’s the new cool in music, but this song is legitimately great. The electronic elements are interesting yet not so overpowering that they take away from the sadness of the vocals and the contradiction of the lyrics. Everything about the song reeks of longing and urge and desperate love. And that intro is so creepy. It’s pretty brilliant.
The only part I don’t like is the “drum” solo in the middle, which is actually overpowering and sort of cuts up the beauty of the song for me.
Video wise, I think the choice to show a guy and a girl playing hockey is interesting. At first I was like, wow, this guy really wants to show off his Canadianness – but it’s actually a smart way to depict the chase and the games guys and girls play when trying to navigate relationships, as the song describes.
Montreal born Thomas Arsenault (aka Mas Ysa) is one to watch. If you’re a James Blake fan, keep your eye on this guy.