My Chemical Romance – Disenchanted

After breaking up in 2013, last year My Chemical Romance offered a concert on December 20 and announced an international tour in 2020. Obviously, due to covid-19, that has been postponed but the fact remains that the band is back together; with rumours of a new album seeing the light next year. In addition to that, Gerard Way has been busy not only releasing his own songs but also writing comic books, with one of them being so successful that Netflix adapted it into a TV series: The Umbrella Academy, which Gerard produces as well. With the second season of this show dropping this month and the return of MCR, I thought now would be as good a time as ever to feature one of my favorite songs from the band as this week’s throwback Thursday.

Disenchanted was included on the band’s third album: 2006’s very successful The Black Parade, and since it wasn’t released as a single on a record that contained several megahits, the song got overlooked. It is a great track, though. I love its acoustic intro that quickly evolves into a full-blown tune, accompanied by some great and deep lyrics from Way. All in all, as with all outstanding songs, Disenchanted should not be forgotten. Listen to it here:

Well I was there on the day

They sold the cause for the queen

And when the lights all went out

We watched our lives on the screen

I hate the ending myself

But it started with an alright scene

My Chemical Romance, Disenchanted

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Fan Theories – Next Great Holiday

Next Great Holiday is the debut single of Fan Theories, a band from Helsinki, Finland, founded by two friends who met while they were playing for different bands. Now a 5-piece, the band was lucky to record a few songs just before the world got into lockdown mode due to the pandemic. This allowed them to released their first song this month, which comes accompanied by a very-well-done music video.

Even though they wrote the song last year, its lyrics strike a chord nowadays when we all dream about going on holidays without knowing when we will be able to (proper holidays without that many restrictions). What I really like about this track is its catchy chorus, which really elevates the whole song to another level. If they keep producing songs like Next Great Holiday, Fan Theories is going to be around for a long time.

Listen to this fine piece of Indie rock from Finland here:

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Floating In Space – Eclipse

From Spain to the world, Floating In Space is yet another great cinematic rock band in Deep Elm Records‘ lineup, which includes Lights & Motion and U137. And just as those bands, Floating In Space is really the one-man show of multi-instrumentalist Ruben Caballero, which is frankly incredible. Earlier this year, the “band” released its third full-length album: A New Dawn, which is a great collection of emotional soundscapes, such as Eclipse, the epilogue of the record.

Eclipse is a beautiful song that evokes new beginnings, featuring a magical clarinet that sets it apart from other cinematic songs. It is really a beautiful track and album. Enjoy!

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Mélanie Laurent – Début

You probably know Mélanie Laurent for her famous role in Quentin Tarantino‘s film Inglorious Basterds or from any of her many other films (with my favourite one being this one), but it is a lesser-known fact that she’s also a musician. In fact, back in 2011 she released her first and only (so far) album, En t’attendant, to moderate success. It was basically a French pop album, with many of those pop songs co-written with Damien Rice. However, the reason why I decided to highlight Mélanie’s album for this week’s Throwback Thursday, is because of the two wonderful piano solos that open and close the record: Début and Fin.

I decided to feature here Début, but I might just as well have chosen Fin. Both songs are incredibly beautiful and delicate, the type of tracks you can listen on repeat without getting tired of them. Unfortunately, there is no “official” video on Youtube, but you can listen to Début on the mixtapes below (or the one on the sidebar here). Enjoy!

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Semisonic – DND

With the news this week that Semisonic is back together with their first song out in 19 years (which is okay but not great), I thought it would be appropriate to reminisce about Semisonic’s great 1998 album, Feeling Strangely Fine, as this week’s #ThrowbackThursday. The record, which was the band’s second album, was without a doubt one of the best ones of 1998. It had three singles, with one of them being a massive success. In fact, some people might think that the band led by Dan Wilson was a one-hit-wonder because of Closing Time, but that would be wrong. The other two singles were also really good and got decent airplay (I do have a soft spot for Secret Smile). However, the song I wanted to highlight here was never a single. It was the sixth track on FSF: DND.

If you have listened to DND before, you probably agree with me on that it is a great tune with that memorable acoustic intro. And if you haven’t, please do yourself a favour and do it here now. Welcome back, Semisonic!

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flor feat. MisterWives – yellow

I love cover tracks that are not just karaoke versions of the original songs. In particular, when the artist manages to bring the song to his/her own style in a way that makes it sound as a brand new track (and even better when the styles are very different). This is exactly what flor accomplished with their cover of Coldplay’s iconic song: Yellow, for which they had a bit of help from Mandy Lee from MisterWives.

flor (they don’t use a capital F) is a pretty well-known band in the indie circuit, but in case you don’t know who they are, they started in 2014 in Oregon, US; and have released two studio albums so far. This cover of Yellow, however, is part of a EP, reimagined, that the band released in February this year, containing new versions of two of their most popular songs plus the song being featured here. All three songs come recommended and deserve a listen, but you can start with Yellow here:

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Lights & Motion – I See You

In yesterday’s entry, I mentioned why I liked cinematic (post-rock) music. Well, I probably have to thank Lights & Motion for that. Reanimation, the debut album of this Swedish one-man band, founded in 2012 by the talented Christoffer Franzén, hooked me in. The “band” is one of the main references in the genre and its songs have been featured in multiple tv commercials, tv shows and movies. Funnily enough, the song I’m recommending here today, from the Lights & Motion‘s latest album: The Great Wide Open, is perhaps the band’s less cinematic songs.

It’s not that I See You lacks Lights & Motion‘s trademark atmospheric vibes and amazing soundscapes –it doesn’t–, but I think it has more elements of indie rock, especially with the hauntingly beautiful vocals of Swedish singer Frida Sundemo. I particularly love the guitars that start playing at 1:42. All in all, it is a mesmerizing track that closes perfectly another great album by Lights & Motion and Deep Elm Records.

Isn’t I See You an instant musical crush?

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The 93 – 03

I love listening to cinematic rock –also known as post-rock, although I dislike that name– when I need to focus or relax. Something about the atmospheric sounds and the different acoustic textures that cinematic rock artists often use elicit joyful yet peaceful emotions in me. Unfortunately, it is not a massively popular genre yet, so the number of artists creating this kind of music is still somewhat small (and the best ones all seem to be signed by Deep Elm Records), but the good news is that this seems to be changing with a number of new “post-rock” bands that have been popping up lately.

The 93 is one such band. Based in Cardiff, the group is formed by two talented brothers from Poland and started in 2017. I discovered them on Instagram when they liked one of my posts and started following me (I love to discover new music that I like this way). They got some samples of their songs on their profile there that got me interested and then I listened to their EPs, which are available on most streaming platforms. They say in their official website that they were originally rooted in punk-rock and you can definitely sense some Angels & Airwaves influence in their songs, which can never be bad. 03 is their latest single, which was released earlier this year, and it encapsulates perfectly the gorgeous kind of music they make.

There is no video available yet but you can listen to this song in the playlists below. Give this band a chance. You won’t regret it.

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U137 – Have Hope

U137 was a “cinematic post-rock” duo from Sweeden formed by Adam Tornbland and Oscar Gullbrandsen in 2013. Unfortunately, Adam passed away at age 27 in 2017 (and I strongly urge you to listen to the beautiful “Adam Forever”, which Oscar released as a tribute to him), so nowadays Oscar is the sole member of U137.

Back in April this year, Oscar released U137‘s latest single, Have Hope, which he wrote as a message of optimism during these uncertain times. The song has the rich textures and layers for which U137 is known for within the genre enthusiasts and makes you want to hear it again and again. As other U137 songs, it evokes feelings of euphoria and has a calming effect. I find this kind of music ideal to listen to while I work or have to focus on something. I guess the best adjective for Have Hope is, quite simply, beautiful.

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Phoebe Bridgers – Punisher

Phoebe Bridgers is the world’s favorite indie/folk artist right now. In fact, when she released her second album, Punisher, one day earlier yesterday, she became a trending topic on Twitter. So, I don’t think you need me to tell you who she is. You probably know that already.

Anyway, that a true singer/songwriter singing this type of music is having so much success in this day and age, is something that I think should be celebrated. It’s pretty rare nowadays. Besides, despite being the song after which the whole album was named, the song I’m recommending here today, Punisher, has not been released a single so far (those have been Garden Song and Kyoto). I cannot say was a huge fan of Phoebe. I mean, I do like her but not in a cannot-stop-listening-to-her kind of way. That being said, I loved the ethereal mood of this song from the first time I heard it. Ms. Bridgers has a soft and delicate voice that pulls you in in a hypnotic way. As a curious side note, musicians use the term punisher to refer –in kind of a condescending way– to super fans that linger at the merch booth in live shows a little too long. Phoebe wrote this song as if she would have been Elliot Smith’s punisher.

Maybe I’ll become a big fan after all. What about you?

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