Friday, November 28, 2008

The Lolita Hazed Seasonal Playlist: Winter 2008/2009

It's the day after Thanksgiving! Do you know what that means? ALMOST WINTER!

In my mind, winter is hands-down the best season for music. Somehow, I keep on finding songs that sound wonderful against the pristine white background of the chillier months, when it's time to get cozy and sip some tea by the fire with the people you love most. So for your personal enjoyment, here's my compilation of all the occasionally dark and always beautiful tracks I have on repeat this time of year:

1. Stereolab "Neon Beanbag (Atlas Sound Southern Baptist Remix)"
What a happy tune! Seriously, I don't understand how Laetitia Sadier & Co. could ever fail to bring on the smiles. With its warm reindeer bells, this is an obvious choice for chiming in the holidays.
2. The 6ths "Falling Out of Love (With You)"
I would make this the music for a montage of a snowball fight between lovers-- which is ironic, considering the song's context, but somehow, it fits the idea perfectly.
3. The Walkmen "We've Been Had"
Can't even describe how wintery the feel of this song is. I remember having it on loop in my head during French class four years ago as I daydreamed of running alone through a lit-up Utica Square.
4. Idaho "Levitate"
This is a very cozy little track that I can see playing in a dim cafe at night, the people inside drinking coffee and watching others shuffle through the snowy city streets.
5. Badly Drawn Boy "Walking Out of Stride"
The amazing Damon Gough used the whole of the very wintery About a Boy score to create something that felt strangely intimate. This makes me think of a bundled-up couple doing, well, what do you think (refer to title)?
6. PJ Harvey "The Devil"
My #1 Girl Crush PJ released White Chalk at the perfect time last year, and while fans of her more guitar-driven sound were disappointed, I was very much entranced. The album was gloomy and hollow, and in my favorite song, she sounds like a ghost appearing in the curtains of an occupied house, a melodic warning reverberating from her throat.
7. Bat for Lashes "Tahiti"
Last winter, my town was hit by a freak icestorm that scattered pieces of the strongest trees onto the roads and kept thousands of houses across the state without power for a least a week. On the first night without electricity, two of my friends came over for a quiet night by the fire, looking for what we could to stay occupied. Something about how the house felt provoked me to grab Bat for Lashes' Fur and Gold and play it on the battery-powered stereo, and this was the first thing I wanted to hear. It caught the atmosphere perfectly, and I feel it whenever I hear this.
8. Asobi Seksu "Stay Awake"
Yuki Chikudate sings like a cherub in distress, and this beautiful almost-single shows the always entrancing shoegazers heading in the direction of romantic '60s girl-pop. This is one to snuggle under the covers to.
9. My Morning Jacket "Mahgeeta (Edit)"
Jim James' voice has this sublimely airy quality about it, and this feels like a snow-day anthem waiting to happen. When it plays, I can see the heavily-dressed citizens of a small, deep South town walking to a nearby burger joint upon salted sidewalks that have retained a storm's moisture.
10. Otis Redding "Cigarettes & Coffee"
One of the most wonderfully emotive legends in soul conjures up a perfect image of happiness that can be found in the simplest little things. It's a song that makes me want to take a few friends to Village Inn on a restless night and do exactly this.
11. The Pipettes "A Winter's Sky"
Duh, right? This is a sadder, Shangri-La's-inspired ballad of theirs that reminds me of Elijah Wood in The Ice Storm, and I can almost imagine the trio singing this out in the cold like unmeddling angels, watching as the tragic heroine plunges to her death.
12. PJ Harvey "Silence"
PJ continues with White Chalk's eerie, piano-driven beauties that hang in the air like a cold breath. It's divinely personal, reflective and hauntingly resonant.

BONUS: Panda Bear "Bros"
This is one that I didn't think really fit anywhere else, but still think is a really great winter song. I read that this was recorded in an indoor pool, which makes it have a uniquely wintery quality. I would like to sled to this at night, even though I have fallen off my bike to this (yes, I'm five).


Valentina said...

This is sort of fantastic. How in the world did you manage to capture winter so well in just 13 songs?!

Lolita Hazed said...

Aww... thank you, darling :-) I worked hard on it, I'm really glad you like it!


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