- JM Stewart
Essential Saturday night listening: When it comes to the weekend, I typically want something a bit more energetic, something to drive to or drink beer to. This could be anything from groovy and technical bands like Minus the Bear, Algernon Cadwallader or Delta Sleep to EDM or pop music like Porter Robinson or The 1975.
Essential Sunday morning listening: Sunday morning is typically when I like to relax and clean my house; that means I want music with chill vibes. My all-time go-to for “chill out” music is Tycho. Scott Hansen, the artist behind Tycho, can create sounds and textures that invoke so much feeling in me. I have never thought of music the same way since seeing Tycho live for the first time.
First record I bought with my own money: I remember picking up a sort of “greatest hits” compilation of Led Zeppelin songs. I used to listen to it nonstop. So much of my inspiration to play music has come from that band. I remember coming home from school with my best friend Reggie Thompson, and we would jam out Led Zeppelin songs on guitar and drums.
“Wish I’d written that” song: One of my all-time favorite songs is “Never Meant” by American Football. That opening riff hits so perfectly, and then the other guitar comes in with the most fitting countermelody... I get emotional just thinking about it. Nothing gets better than open-tuned guitars playing noodle-y riffs with Mike Kinsella’s drawn-out vocal phrasing and impassioned lyrics.
“Wish I could unhear that” song: I can’t stand ’50s or ’60s bubblegum pop. My first job as a teenager was as a server at a local IHOP. The entire playlist for that restaurant consisted of the same 20 “oldies” hits over and over and over again. It instilled a burning hatred for that sound in me that even today I cannot shake.
My latest online discovery: I’m always reading through subreddits and music groups on Facebook looking for the next sound that really inspires me, as well as keeping up with my Apple Music-curated “New Music Mix.” The latest thing I found that struck a chord in me was probably the album Nectarine by Funeral Advantage. It’s a dream pop/shoegaze album that, to me, stands out in the currently oversaturated genres it is inspired by.
Artist more people should know about: There are so many great artists that do not get the attention they deserve; it’s a sad consequence of how easy it is to put out music these days. A few that come to mind: Macseal, Bearcubbin’!, Penpal and The Appleseed Cast.
Guilty pleasure: Electronic pop music and Top 40 pop hits. I sometimes throw on Carly Rae Jepsen, Grimes or even Poppy. It’s like candy; I just can’t resist a good pop song.