Music I’m Listening To – May 2015

Music I’m Listening To – May 2015


There was recently a study that people stop listening to new music at the age of 33. I stopped listening to new music when I was 23. After graduating from college my musical interests completely froze. And my passion for discovering new bands froze completely. In the past decade, there are less than a handful of bands that I’ve folded into my regular listening.

Teenager me is cringing right now. Especially since I live in NYC. And I should be at a show right this second. And I’m probably missing the-next-big-thing as I type this. Instead of going to shows, I go to bed. Some shows start at 11p! That is not my idea of a good time.

But I still love music! So recently I’ve tried to get up to date with new artists, old artists new stuff, and anything in between. With the help of various websites and Spotify, I’ve been fairly successful. My tastes have definitely broadened since I was a teenager though at the same time I’ve become incredibly picky. But if anyone has recommendations for new artists, especially Brooklyn ones, please let me know!

Here’s a few selections that I’ve been listening to lately. Lately means either the past week or the past few years.

Ground Up / Hip-Hop

I’m pretty sure I found this hip-hop group on Spotify, somehow, within the past year. Ground Up are based in Philadelphia and are trying to become successful… from the ground up. So far, it’s working out for them. Below is the first song I heard by them Got Damn. Although I’ve just found them within the past year, the song below is 5-years old. That’s where I am with music nowadays. Better late than never. Let’s Ride is another good one and that was released last year. Apparently it’s perfect for a summertime mix.

The Julie Ruin / Dance-Punk

The Julie Ruin is because Kathleen Hanna will never stop making music. And that’s fine by me. They have released one album, Run Fast in 2013. But just released a new single a few months ago. So I’m not too behind the times with this one. If you’re not familiar with the name, Kathleen Hanna fronted the band Bikini Kill in the 90’s and then Le Tigre in the 00’s. She was significantly a part of the riot grrl movement. She’s brilliant and talented. The Julie Ruin doesn’t disappoint. While not every song is a hit for me. It’s all good stuff.

Blur / Brit-Pop

Blur is back. A band I loved growing up has released a new album The Magic Whip. And it’s quite good! I have no qualms about a band going off to do side projects then getting back together. Everyone grows and changes. You don’t want to do the same exact thing for your entire life. Musicians love playing music. But their tastes change. Just like my taste of what music I listen to has changed. Of course theirs will change too. So they all took time off to just live their lives. Play in other bands. Learn more things about things. Have families. And now they took all those experiences and came together to put together a surprisingly great album. If you’re not familiar with Blur, you may remember their hit Song 2 in the late 90’s. A short track that basically was just Albarn shouting “whoo-hoo” the whole time. I’m really glad they took a break.

Refused / Hardcore

This is another band who is releasing a new album after a huge hiatus and it’s just great. Refused had a minor hit in ’98 with New Noise. At the time I liked any song where the lead singer screamed, so I instantly loved it. Unfortunately, that 1998 album, The Shape of Punk To Come, was their last. The band broke up later that year. They played their last show to a crowd of maybe one hundred people. Their last show in the US was in Virginia. It wasn’t big news when they broke up. And then no one heard from them for about a decade.

Then in 2012, they announced some tour dates. But were firm that this was not a restart of their career. They were just playing some shows. I was fortunate to see them play at Terminal 5 in April of that year. It was an absolutely amazing show. And it was great to see a band who broke up over a decade ago to a hundred people, come back and sell-out two shows at Terminal 5 in nyc. It really goes to show they were ahead of their time. And it’s nice to see them getting recognition. They recently released a single Elektra and have a new album in the works. This track does not disappoint. I can’t wait to see what else they have for us.

Life Size Maps / “Glitch-Pop”

I’ve been following this Brooklyn band for the past several years. They play here regularly and it’s enjoyable. This isn’t necessarily my favorite type of music. But I like what they do. After having various one-off tracks on the Internet, they just released their self-titled debut album last month. Here’s the first single.


I can’t talk about music in May without mentioning EUROVISION! I will do a full post on this next week. But for now, there are some great songs in the line-up this year. UK’s Electro Velvet is like a dance-pop-jazz-revival track. Australia’s Guy Sebastian is sure to win. And Denmark’s Anti Social Media brings us a song of pure pop with a positive message and it’s sooo sugary. There are also a lot of ballads this year, as usual. Italy’s Il Volo serenades us with Grand Amore (swoon!). I’m so glad these guys are automatically in the finals.

Here’s a full Eurovision Spotify playlist with most of the contestants. Take a listen! Here’s Denmark.


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