What I Like Discovering: June 13 – 17

This week’s WILD Playlist is all about the pop. Indie pop, chamber pop, neo-psychedelic pop and anything with some pop. Clap along to the snap of the snare drum, tap your toes to the catchy tunes, and enjoy the classic sounding melodies with their modern styling.

The Essex GreenThe Essex Green – The Late Great Cassiopia
This song is so dang catchy. The Essex Green is based out of Brooklyn, New York and their careers went from 1999 to 2006. After a ten year break, The Essex Green is back together and recording a new album. This was a complete surprise and nobody expected Sasha Bell, Jeff Baron, and Chris Ziter to reunite and fill our ears with their wonderful tunes. The Late Great Cassiopia off of their second album, The Long Goodbye, features catchy melodies and harmonies that can easily be the cause of dancing. The lyrics are dreamy and smooth and give the sense of greatness.

Varsity – So Sad, So Sad
Indie pop band, Varsity doesn’t have much to say about themselves. There really isn’t too much info posted on them except that they are based in Chicago, Illinois and their names are Steph, Dylan, Pat, Jake, and Paul.  They don’t need to say much though, their music says it all. They have a classic pop feel in So Sad, So Sad. Clean guitars, light druming, and 50’s inspired melodies give us a dreamy flavor to chew on. The pre-chorus is such a satisfying build up of words it’s hard not to smile while listening to this song.

Dr. Dog – The Breeze
The Philadelphia-based Dr. Dog came to life when McMicken and Leaman’s band, Racoon, ended. They went ahead and kept the animal themed naming conventions but decided they had graduated with a doctorate in music composition. That last part may or may not be true, but it’s hard to deny that Dr. Dog are indeed masters of their craft. The lovely harmonized ooh’s and aah’s in The Breeze float us along a beautiful path to bright keys and backup vocals.

Camera ObscuraCamera Obscura – Lloyd, I’m Ready To Be Heartbroken
Camera Obscura is a band I haven’t given enough attention to in the past. While I’d run into their songs on occasion, I haven’t stopped to appreciate their fun Indie Pop sound. Even though the Scottish quartet got their start in the 90s, their music would still be recognized as retro-styled pop. Their 20 year career has seen 5 full-length albums, a number of changes to their lineup, and continuous great music. Lloyd, I’m Ready To Be Heartbroken is a perfect example of UK Pop sound while also showing the fun way they blend instruments. The organ shows their unique choices in their music.

Beirut – Nantes
Out of New Mexico came the surprise indie hit, Beirut. Their indie folk sound blended with Eastern European Gypsy styles is the product of multi-instrumentalist, Zach Condon. Drawing from inspirations such as The Magnetic Fields, he successfully creates music with an eclectic draw. Nantes’ is constructed perfectly to emphasize the singer’s steady voice alongside the bouncy accordion, keys, and drums. Once again, we are greeted with beautiful harmonies to keep us feeling rested and at ease.

The Districts – 4th and Roebling
This is the second band based out of Philadelphia to land in our playlist this week. It’s the first time I haven’t had to spell check Philadelphia. Huzzah. The Districts formed in 2009 while the members were still in high school. Since dedicating themselves to music, they have seen growing success and a real maturity in their music. 4th and Roebling is the opening track to their most recent album. Their scratchy emotional vocals are something I always appreciate.

About The Author

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Chuy is a musician, video gamer and improv comedian from a small mountain town in California.

After earning a bachelor’s degree in Media, he wanted an outlet to study and analyze the workings of media within our culture. He is currently exploring different states in the US while writing for WILD, creating gameplay videos on his YouTube channel, ChuyPlaysNintendo, and finding different venues to perform Improv and music.

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