Folks, it is time for another edition of the cLLasic Friday Music Thread. We’re in late July, we survived the brutal early summer heat wave, the forecast has been perfect northwest summer weather for a few weeks now and looks to continue to be that way for a while. Plus, the wild fire smoke has been minimal so far (/knocks on every piece of wood near me). All things considered, we deserve something nice and lovely summer weather will do just fine.
With summer weather comes the need for good SUMMER JAMS. Music tends to be very seasonal for me, and there is just certain stuff that I never listen to unless it’s 70 degrees or more and sunny outside. So this your 2021 Summer Jams edition of the Friday Music Thread. Here are a few of my top picks. I stuck with newer music since we all have our classic summer stand-bys and I wanted to share some new-to-me jams that I’ve been feeling so far this summer.
Japanese Breakfast - Kokomo, IN
I know I just said a bunch of positive stuff about summer up there, but that doesn’t mean the impending sense of doom that has hung over our heads since March 2020 has gone away completely. Oh no, it checks in every week or so to say “hey, fuck you, buddy” in the form of COVID exposure scares with my un-vaccinated small children and things of that nature. That’s when summer music with a real sense of ennui comes in handy, and the band Japanese Breakfast covers that very nicely. Songwriter/front person Michelle Zauner started the band as a way to process the grief of her mother’s death, so the themes of the band’s music covers a variety of the stages of grief and the sometimes hard to understand behavior grieving people engage in. This song is both breezy and light (with a cheeky Beach Boys reference in the title even though the song’s sound and production hearkens back to the 60’s heyday of the Beach Boys, not the 80’s), yet soaked in guilt and regret. “These days I can’t shake the awful feeling I’m missing something I can’t place.” Yeah, that pretty much sums up the year so far.
Kygo & Kim Petras - Broken Glass
All right, this one is for those who enjoy crying in the club. I came across Kim Petras last year and her pure sugar alt-pop belting is just irresistible to me. This song with Tropical House DJ Kygo is an absolute earworm and Kim’s vocals just burn it down as she toasts a doomed relationship. Feels extremely relatable as we approach the part of the Mariners season right before the potential collapse. The part where we find out if they’re going to be buyers, sellers, or just descend below .500 into another middling season. Cheers to us, indeed.
Remi Wolf & Dominic Fike - Photo ID
Former staff writer and current NYDN tabloid slinger Matthew Roberson pointed me toward this song and his record of having good taste continues on unblemished. This is a pure no thoughts, just summer vibes kind of song. Just a catchy funk riff, bright and bouncy drums, and light-hearted, hooky vocals from Remi Wolf.
Khruangbin - Friday Morning
This song is from 2018, but I’m including it anyways. Khruangbin makes perfect summer weekend morning music. Upbeat, but not too loud and crazy. Chilled out, but not boring. It’s just a perfect guitar-driven, mostly instrumental vibe-out with sparse and ethereal vocals. I think “Con Todo El Mundo” has most of my favorite songs, but all their releases are good.
Here’s an Apple Music playlist I made of my current Summer Jams. Enjoy!
Here's a "no thoughts, just vibes" kind of summer playlist for trying to avoid that feeling of impending doomhttps://t.co/k0n72Bd732— Eric Sanford (@sanford_and_son) July 23, 2021
PROMPT: Share your top summer jams, either new ones or oldies. Links appreciated. Also, if you have a summer playlist in some shareable form, post it!