“I saw old Autumn in the misty morn stand shadowless like silence, listening to silence.”
Yes, the changing, falling leaves and the revival of the Pumpkin Spice Latte say it all—Autumn is upon us. But come on, Thomas Hood, we don’t need to listen to silence! How boring is that? Here’s a little autumnal playlist to groove on as the days grow chillier and the harvest moon gets bigger.
1. “Montezuma” — Fleet Foxes:
There’s nothing like listening to Fleet Foxes on a sunny fall day. The driving beat, soft guitar and smooth vocals transport you from your crappy office to a far away, well-lit forest with there are unlimited piles of leaves to jump in and a variety of wooded animals to befriend.
2. “Emmylou” — First Aid Kit:
The first line says it all. “Oh the bitter winds are comin’ in, and I’m already missin’ the summer.” Leading track off this sister-duo’s newest album, The Lion’s Roar, Emmylou combines all the things these two gals do well: tight, floating harmonies, well-constructed, simple instrumentals and that little extra something that you just can’t articulate. (Hint: they’re Swedish).
3. “The Dangling Conversation” — Simon & Garfunkel:
Here’s a throwback for you…need they any introduction? Another dynamic duo, these guys are going to bring it down a notch for you and remind you that some autumn days can be really sad…but beautiful!
4. “These Days” — Nico:
I discovered this song with the help of Wes Anderson’s Royal Tenenbaums. This German lady (man, I’ve got a thing for foreign chicks) was a triple threat in the 60s and 70s—actress, model and singer. She’s known for her collaboration on The Velvet Underground’s premiere album. Put on your sweater, grab an umbrella let Nico bring you to a lonely, pretty raining street scene in…Hamburg?
5. “Fall of ’82” — The Shins:
And back to the year 2012—this one’s from The Shins’ newest album, Port of Morrow. It tells the story of a sister and a brother in the fall of 1982. So really, we’re still stuck in the past here, but The Shins’ innovative riffs and James Mercer’s clear-as-a-bell voice make the nostalgia wonderful.
6. “Let It Fall” — Lykke Li:
Alright, I promise this is my last song from an adorable European girl. I had to use it because it says “fall” in the title. You won’t be able to stop grinning at her cute little accent, light vocals and that catchy drum beat.
7. “The Fall of Mr. Fifths” — Why?:
I’m assuming they meant “fall” in the other sense of the word, but I really wanted to use a Why? song, so get over it. Another set of siblings here, Yoni and Josiah Wolf (awesome names, right?) have a very distinctive sound. With their mostly rapped and bizarrely poetical lyrics, raw beats and always-tasty glockenspiel, iTunes categorizes these guys as “Hip-Pop.” See for your self. Why? Well…why not?
8. “Furr” — Blitzen Trapper:
Aw, I just love this song. Its your not-so-typical-coming-of-age story: boy runs away, turns into wolf, is raised by wolves, grows up, sees a pretty girl and…well, I’ll let you find out for yourself. If you like their folky, happy sound, check Blitzen Trapper out Thursday at Highdive in Champaign! I’ll be there!
9. “Oh Yoko” — John Lennon:
Again, it seems kind of silly to introduce him, but here’s a Beatle whose solo career was cut short by a psycho-maniac assassin. We miss you John! It’s a simple love song, and whether you hate Yoko or not, you’ve gotta love its charm. I don’t really know how to relate it to autumn, forgive me.
10. “October” — Broken Bells:
Alright, I redeemed myself…it’s October, so this has got to be on here. DJ Danger Mouse and James Mercer (from The Shins) teamed up and made one hella epic album, combining only good things from both of the musicians’ vastly different backgrounds. Jive on the driving beat, smooth choruses and let your mind go, “straight down the runway.”