OE Monomania – The Tracks We Can’t Stop Listening To 12/28


This week, we are back with another round of OpenEars Monomania, the tracks we can’t get out of our head, songs that are constantly on repeat. In addition to regular OpenEars contributors, we’ve invited musicians, industry folks, and friends alike with a passion for discovering new music and sharing with others to contribute their own monomania songs to the list each week. These are the tracks we are loving, that have etched themselves into our minds currently 12/28/15, complete with Spotify playlist at the end. We hope you will find something new you dig:

Damien Jurado – “Exit 353”

Damien Jurado just seems like he is getting better and better with each release, and the lead single “Exit 353” from his next epic album, the 17 songVisions Of Us On The Land (due out March 18th via Secretly Canadian), sees Jurado at his best asking: “Are we all not lost in song?” I can say that I am completely lost in this song. – MG

David Bowie – “Lazarus”

David Bowie is as weird as ever. Bowie is also still as great as ever. “Lazarus” is the only song that appears on both his new album, Blackstar, and in Lazarus, Bowie’s new Off Broadway musical. The track itself is a haunting 6 minute tune with spaced out horns. With lyrics like: “Look up here, man, I’m in danger / I’ve got nothing left to lose / I’m so high, it makes my brain whirl / Dropped my cell phone down below / Ain’t that just like me?”, this song is sure to stop you in your tracks. – MG

exwhy – “Salt”

PASTE recently premiered the first single from Atlanta based exwhy, whose debut album The Feels is out February 17th. “Salt” is a powerful single that vocalist/guitarist Jack Fowler described perfectly to PASTE on the premiere: “In execution, the song starts like any relationship does, loud and exciting. But once the shit hits the fan, and the reality of what exists in the dark begins to set in, everything becomes uncomfortably intimate, and quiet. When it explodes at the end, that’s rage, despair, loneliness – you’d give anything to take it away, but it’s not your fight, so you just coo yourself to sleep.” That rage, despair, loneliness is what makes this such an amazing song and has Exwhy poised to be big. – MG

Father John Misty with Jonathan Wilson Band – “God” (John Lennon Cover)

J. Tillman, aka Father John Misty, joined the Jonathan Wilson Band on the 4th Annual Merry Minstrel Musical Circus in Los Angeles for a cover of John Lennon’s “God”, which is pretty much a perfect choice for FJM to cover and update with some modern day FJM jabs. Father John Misty is at the top of his game here, and man this just makes me need to see FJM live again very very soon. – MG

Florist – “Cool and Refreshing”

Shout out to Turntable Kitchen for introducing their readers to Florist. “Cool and Refreshing” is such a lovely little tune off of their 5-song EP via Double Double Whammy– EH

Joanna Newsom – Leaving the City (Live on Later… with Jools Holland)

Joanna Newsom is not my favorite, but dang it, I love this live version of Leaving the City from a recent-ish episode of Later with Jools Holland. It’s just Joanna and her harp. It’s so gorgeous. I think I listened to it AT LEAST five times in a row the other day. Leaving the City is from Joanna Newsom’s recent release, Divers, out now via Drag City– EH


Leif Erikson – “Looking For Signs”

London rockers Leif Erikson‘s debut single “Looking For Signs” came out last month and it’s a perfect update on the classic rock sounds of the 70s with beautiful guitar riffs and soothing voice front and center while singing about growing up and finding your way. Names like Kurt Vile, The War On Drugs, Fleet Foxes, The Doobie Brothers, and Steely Dan are being thrown around, however you want to shape, this is a damn good song that latches itself in my head, I couldn’t be happier for it. – MG

Mothers – “Too Small For Eyes”

Mothers, out of Athens, GA, is the project of artist Kristine Leschper whose debut LP When You Walk A Long Distance, You Are Tired, is due out February 26 on Grand Jury and Wichita Recordings. What started out as a solo project, has now become a full band, yet this first single harkens back closer to the solo material. “Too Small For Eyes” is a stunningly beautiful track that puts Kristine’s soft voice at the forefront, picking her mandolin with piano and strings to round out this beauty. After ruling this year’s CMJ, Mothers has been on list after list (Spotify, Immersive Atlanta, etc.) as an artist to watch in 2016. I personally can’t wait to see what’s in store for the full length debut as this band has already shown an amazing range through the tracks released so far. – MG

Pumarosa – “Priestess” 

The East London five-piece Pumarosa, led by singer and guitarist, Isabel Munoz-Newsome,  released the debut single back in September. “Priestess” is an epic 7 minute jam with a great bass line, swirling guitar, killer saxophone, and haunting vocals from Munoz-Newsome. The song about freedom and dancing, is powerful and hypnotic, requiring repeat listens and has Pumarosa primed to blow up on both sides of the pond. – MG

Radiohead – “Spectre”

On Christmas eve Radiohead released a new song with the following statement “Last year we were asked to write a theme tune for the Bond movie Spectre. Yes we were. It didn’t work out, but became something of our own, which we love very much. As the year closes we thought you might like to hear it. Merry Christmas. May the force be with you.”, and now I can’t stop listening to this beautiful song. – MG

Sea Ghost – “Cowboy Hat”

The lead single “Cowboy Hat”, from Sea Ghost‘s debut album SG is an infectious track full of youthful exuberance. Usually when I hear the words “Pop Punk” I immediately think it’s going to be horrible made for MTV in early 2000s punk, but this young Atlanta band has put together great lofi pop punk with plenty of reverb and distorted guitars that can easily perk me up and dancing from wall to wall. – MG

Sleeping Bag – “Wrestle”

Bloomington Indiana based Drummer/singer/songwriter Dave Segedy doesn’t seem to ever stop evolving. From his experimental solo drum project “Whoa, Bro Awesome” to the catchy-as-hell choruses and bright guitars of the first two Sleeping Bag LPs, it’s clear that he doesn’t want to release the same record twice. Even more evolution is evident on his latest Joyful Noise Records release Deep Sleep. The melodies are still firmly grounded in pop, but this time with more fuzz and numerous stop-what-you’re-doing-and-listen-to-this-guitar-solo moments. On the album’s standout track “Wrestle”, fans of Pavement/Malkmus and Weezer will have their ears perk up at the 1:34 mark with the build and subsequent shred session. For more Segedy drumming check out the excellent Arrah and the Ferns record “Evan is a Vegan” from 2006. – MJ

Tracks currently on Spotify all added together into one playlist:

This week’s contributors: Emily Hogan(EH); Mike Gerry (MG); Matt Jarrard (MJ), cellist for Oryx & Crake; 


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Mike Gerry

Head music fiend at OpenEars Music

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