by Paul Falardeau (Arts & Life Editor)
“Down in the Valley” -Solomon Burke
As my colleague, Nick Ubels, so eloquently reported in a recent issue of The Cascade, soul legend Solomon Burke has passed away. Here is a soulful deep cut about hard work and the perseverance it takes to go on when the going seems at its worst. Burke’s voice is at its best here, it would be a waste not to revel in this epiphany of song.
“Conversation 16” – The National
From their fantastic new album, The National ruminate on lost youth and think deeply enough to include such wonderful lines as “I was afraid I’d eat your brains” and “Everything means everything.” Wonderful.
“Re: Your Brains” – Jonathon Coulton
In honour of All Hallow’s, here is one of my favourites, which considers the change in office dynamics after a zombie apocalypse. This is less Night of the Living Dead and more Michael Scott, though, so zombie nerds, office champs and all other folk will get some love out of it.
“Mansion on the Hill” – Neil Young
A classic by any standard, this anti flag wavin’ anthem is at once a youthful romp and a nostalgic reminisce that came from Neil Young about the time he was laying down the groundwork for the grunge explosion.
“Pull Out” – Death from Above 1979
The band that has the best record of blowing up before they blew up since the Sex Pistols is also the band that every kid on the scene loves to point out they know about. This track is about as wild and irresponsible as the form of birth control it encourages and at least half as fun.