Hump Day Finds: Lady Lamb

I know there are more important things happening in the world, and I should be working on essay 4 of #52essays2017, but I need a break. (Don't we all? Jesus.) 

So I'm here today to spread the good word of Lady Lamb.  

I know zero about her other than the fact that she's been getting me through some of these darker days. Usually, when times get tough, I head straight for the Ace of Base, the George Michael, the '80s and '90s jams that drown out anything but the feeling of a warm, fuzzy nostalgia for a time that probably never existed. 

These days, though, Lady Lamb is where I'm choosing to rest my head. 

I love that this song starts off by taking your hand and then running off into a dark forest without letting go. There are moments that let you catch your breath, but it ends the same way it began -- by running into the darkness.

What I love about "Spat Out Spit" is that it sneaks up on you. Not until she gets to the silence (rest? I don't know any music vocabulary) in the middle of the song and starts singing "Was I born wild? Have I been asleep this whole damn time?" do you realize that you've got a lump in your throat, and you, too, are feeling a little feral. 

The first thing I noticed about Lady Lamb was that her voice sounds a little Feist-y. (Like Feist. YOU know.) But it becomes clear very quickly that Lady Lamb is not the gentle, whimsical Feist

There's a Twitter account that just tweets Lady Lamb lyrics. M came across it when the account retweeted one of M's tweets about Lady Lamb. We couldn't figure out if it was a bot or a real person who's just obsessed with her lyrics (and her?), but there's definitely a tweet slipped in there about a Sunday plan to get drunk in a car with their ex-girlfriend, see Lady Lamb, cry hysterically for 2 hours, and go to bed feeling lighter. 

Honestly, no judgment. If Twitter had been around when I was in high school or college, that is probably something I would have tweeted, almost verbatim. Except I would have been alone for all of it -- no ex, no friends, no Lady Lamb. Just me, crying hysterically for 2 hours and then going to bed. (Seriously, no pity. I'm fine.)

This song is gorgeous, but I honestly just want to talk about this jacket she's wearing. I would throw down some serious cash for that jacket and add to my collection of varsity jackets that M doesn't think I need. (Please.)

I'm going to leave you with Lady Lamb's entire KEXP performance. It's well worth the 30 minutes, so just sit your ass down, focus, and listen. This will help you get through your day today, I promise. 

(Also, Lady Lamb is touring the country and playing in people's actual living rooms.)

(Oh my god, she also wrote a manifesto to go along with her latest album, Tender Warriors Club. A woman after my own heart.)

(And this t-shirt! Maybe I need to start my own Twitter account so I can just gush about Lady Lamb in real time, whenever and wherever.)

Hump Day Finds: Chromeo

Okay, so my "find" this week is more of a revival. My Youtube rabbit hole explorations led me back to Chromeo, a band that I was most in love with the summer before I moved for grad school. 

I know, all the disembodied and shapely women's legs are not awesome. I get that it's a little bit of a callback to Robert Palmer's "Addicted to Love" video, but in both instances, it's a literal objectification of women's bodies, and I'm not down for that. I am, however, down for the end of the video, where disembodied men's (?) legs join the party and tango with the other legs. So it's equal opportunity disembodiment? 

When I was at my peak obsession with this song, this is not the video that I watched a million times on early Youtube. This was before artists and musicians had official channels. So the video that accompanied "Fancy Footwork" in my day was grainy and of a guy in the middle of a crowded dance floor, working it out with his fancy footwork. He was a little nerdy, and not all his moves were awesome, but he was confident as hell. Who can't respect that? 

I can't find that video anymore, but it summed up why I loved Chromeo's music and vibe so much. They were a little nerdy, a little street, a little cheesy, and all kinds of retro, which made for a weird combo (at the time) that I adored. They made synthy music I could dance to AND their lyrics made me chuckle. 

At that time, there wasn't much out there that made the same kind of music as Chromeo. My heart longed for more of that synthpop/electrofunk goodness, and I wanted it ASAP. 

As grad school took over my life and more bands began creating the stuff that I craved (see Feminist Dance Rock), Chromeo fell off my radar.

And then, this.

Y'all, SOLANGE. And I know, I know, the crazed spontaneously impregnated women chasing the Chromeo guys down is not the best and most feminist thing that could happen here. But the end of the video kind of redeems all that, even though it kind of doesn't make a lot of sense? I don't know, I won't try to argue it. That hook, though, is something I will argue for until the day I can no longer argue for things.  

And then, I found out that Chromeo released an album a year or two ago. (Like I said before, I'm typically 6 months to 2 years late to the party.) 

Now, I may be biased here, but Chromeo has not only maintained their awesomeness, but have gotten better with age, like fine wine. (YES. You heard right. I just said that.) Someone could probably argue that they keep making the same kind of music, but it doesn't ever feel stale to me. Every song and single has its own personality.

I'm not going to touch the content of that video, but I will talk about my leather jacket envy and all of those dance moves.

I'll leave you with the Chromeo song I can't stop listening to these days. Some of the lyrics make a gesture toward something that resembles something with a feminist-ish sentiment, but then reverses itself into something that doesn't make sense to me. But I love the chorus, I love the guitars, I love its 80s-ish Dirty Dancing-ish swagger, I love that the song revolves around popping a nickel into a jukebox full of old 45s. And I love that Haim is in this video.   

Happy Wednesday, y'all. May you have a Chromeo dance party in your living room to try out all your fancy footwork. Here's to getting over that hump this week. xoxo.

Hump Day Finds: Mitski

I don't know how your Wednesday is going. Maybe you're thinking, UGH, it's only WEDNESDAY?! You might be thinking, I'm so tired, I don't care, I just want to go back to bed. Maybe you're thinking neither of these things because Wednesday isn't a mile marker in your week because you love your life and it doesn't matter what day it is. Or, alternately, Wednesday isn't a mile marker in your week because this is your longest work week and Wednesday isn't actually the middle of it, and you actually have no idea what day it is.

I have been all of the people I mentioned above. Whatever the case, I know that I always need an extra little something on Wednesdays, whether it's a boost of energy or something with a little bit of attitude to get me over the energetic hump of the week. 

This week, Mitski is everything to me. While venturing down a Youtube rabbit hole together recently, M said, "Ooh, play Mitski. I think you'll like her." Like her? I LOVE HER. (Warning: this video is borderline NSFW for a typical workplace, I think?)  

Y'all. If my poems were songs, I think I'd want them to be Mitski songs.

Listen. I'm not a music critic, I'm not a music snob. I will never pretend that I'm up-to-date in all the cool new music. Generally, I join the party 6 months to 2 years late. I will never claim to "discover" anyone like I'm Christopher Columbus or something. Having said that, I'll just say some facts about Mitski that I found on her Bandcamp page and her website. "Townie" is off her 2014 album called "Bury Me At Makeout Creek." (Isn't that an amazing title?!) She has a new album coming out in June called "Puberty 2." 

And her performances? Good lord. What follows was my introduction to Mitski. I don't think I even moved during this entire performance. 

And after hearing her talk in this Audiotree session, I'm completely in love.  

What I love about Mitski: to me, she has elements of Rachael Yamagata's self-deprecation and Bjork's ovaries-out vocals. I love her discordance and distortion and the sweetness of her voice and melodies that weave under and over all the noise. I love that she sings at the top of her lungs INTO her guitar. I love that she talks about centering women, people of color and trans folks in the music industry. Her lyrics are heart punches. I don't even know how to articulate all the other things I love about her because they're music things.  

I'll leave you all with her latest single. Happy Wednesday, friends. I hope you love Mitski as much as I do, and let her carry you through your day.