Liner Notes (December 18th, 2021)

It was a relatively slow music week for the industry and in my life last week, but I did watch a bunch of holiday films and start working on my end-of-the-year list. As always, there’s a playlist of ten songs I enjoyed last week, and this week’s supporter Q&A post can be found here.

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A Few Things

  • Last week Hannah and I went on our first “real” vacation in years. We packed up one cat, left the other here to be catsat by my sister, and went to the Oregon coast for the entire week. We stayed in a sleepy coast side down, went on long walks on the beach, drank lots of beer at the breweries, and did all we could to spend a week unplugging and relaxing as much as possible. It felt great to have no real responsibilities for an entire week and just spend the days doing whatever felt right. Lots of fish and chips and beer ended up being what felt most right most days, and there was a killer beer cheese soup that we had that I’m still dreaming about dipping soft pretzels into. Due to the little vacation week, I didn’t listen to a whole lot of music over the past seven days. But I did watch a lot of lousy holiday movies!
  • I didn’t get my annual holiday guide written as early as I wanted to this year, but I did finally get it up and there’s some cool stuff on there. When I write a holiday guide I only put on things I’ve actively used, purchased, and can stand behind as something I find cool or of good quality, and over the past year or so, I haven’t really bought all that much that fits into that category. There are a few cool things though that are on this year’s list, and I think the past lists all hold up as well. So, if you’re looking for last-minute gifts, or you are looking for a bit of inspiration for your future wishlists, take a look.

Sponsor

Mighty Tortuga have released a video for “Memory Ln.” The song comes from the band’s new album, Letting Go, which is out now on all streaming platforms.

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In Case You Missed It

Music Thoughts

  • As I said, I didn’t really listen to much music over the past week since I was on vacation and spent most of the time hanging out with Hannah. I did end up going through some of the City and Colour discography, so that ended up being my most played artist, and then I also spent some time trying to go through some of the albums I either missed or wanted to make sure to listen to again as I begin working on my end of the year list. That included Super American, Blackstarkids, and Porter Robinson Vacation week. My list is coming along … I’ve narrowed it down to about 80 albums that could be on my list and am slowly trying to whittle it down to the top 30. I feel pretty confident with my top 10, but the order isn’t quite right. And there are albums I have in the 30-40 range that are fantastic albums I’d like to highlight but am unsure they’ll make the final list. In the end, it’s just an EOTY list, but I do try and put a lot of care into capturing what I listened to and most enjoyed over the past year—being able to compare this year to my Last.fm listening stats is pretty interesting because I can see where albums slot in comparatively. Just how much I listened to an album does give it a little extra weight. I’ll be finalizing that over the next week or so, and then building out the staff list with all the willing contributors, and the goal is to have that posted the first week of January.

The Stats: Over the past week, I listened to 32 different artists and 170 different tracks (177 scrobbles). My top-played artist was City and Colour, while the most played album ended up being Enema of the State. Here is my Top 9 from last week, and you can follow me on Apple Music and/or Last.fm.

Entertainment Thoughts

  • This week saw quite a bit of holiday movies attempted on the awful smart TV interface of the hotel television. It started with You’ve Got Mail which does not come across as “cute” as it did in my youth and comes across a little more creepy and a little more cheaty/catfishy. Single All the Way was relatively cute but the family members made me wish bad things would happen to them for being so damn pushy. My Dad’s Christmas Date was something we couldn’t finish, while A Very Murray Christmas saved the night by still being very silly and yet totally fun. Just Friends is still a super-problematic holiday fave re-watch, and Serendipity held up better than You’ve Got Mail and did its job of making me feel all holiday spirit.
  • Not a holiday film, but I liked Riders of Justice. It’s a well-done and clever spin on the “revenge” genre while being oddly funny. There’s snow, so it kinda feels festive.
  • We just finished our re-watch of the first half of the second season of Pen15, so now we get to watch the episodes we haven’t seen yet. I continue to love this show and cannot wait to see how they finish it off.
  • Yesterday, we binged all the current episodes of Hawkeye, so we could watch the new one when it airs and get all of this in during the holiday season since it takes place during Christmas. I wouldn’t call it great, but I would say I have been enjoying it and found it a lot of fun so far. Fun characters and just about the right length for each episode where it doesn’t feel drawn out but leaves you wanting more. I’d probably currently rank it below Wandavision, and depending on how it ends just about on par with Loki. (And definitely above The Falcon and the Winter Solider.
  • Remember the beer cheese soup from above? So, while we were there eating and drinking beer, there was a show on the TV behind the bar. It was Inkmaster on Netflix. After seeing an episode while we were having lunch, we got so wrapped up in needing to know more that we watched the rest of the season that was airing (season 3) when we got back to the hotel that night. I’ve never learned so much about tattoos or instantly felt able to judge and rate good and bad ones as I do right now—pretty fun vacation reality TV show binge.

Random and Personal Stuff

  • Not much here this week, as I said we’ve been gone it’s been nice to come back home to our own space. Took some home COVID tests this morning and tested negative, so we’re just preparing for a week of seeing family and building toward Christmas. It should be a fun and festive week and while I can’t believe how fast the month has flown by, I am absolutely looking forward to opening up some gifts and spending some time with loved ones.

Ten Songs

Here are ten songs that I listened to and loved this week. Some may be new, some may be old, but they all found their way into my life during the past seven days.

  1. Mutemath – Love Light a Way
  2. Hot Mulligan – Featuring Mark Hoppus (Acoustic)
  3. Super American – RIP Jeff
  4. American Football – Fade Into You
  5. Rat City & Dagny – Bad
  6. Owen – Me
  7. Daphne Loves Derby – Walking Up
  8. Blackstarkids – JUNO
  9. City and Colour – Me and the Moonlight
  10. Floating Points & Pharoah Sanders – Movement 3

This playlist is available on Spotify and Apple Music.

Community Watch

The trending and popular threads in our community this week include:

The most liked post in our forums last week was this one by ALT/MSC/FAN in the “Tour Prediction and Speculation Thread” thread.

I hope everyone has a wonderful rest of their weekend; a great week next week, and we’ll see if I find some time to write up anything next Saturday. Since it’s Christmas, it’s sorta 50/50 at the moment if I think I’ll have the time. If I don’t, I want to wish everyone that reads this newsletter a happy holiday, and I hope you have a wonderful and safe one. Thanks, as always, for reading.

Previous editions of Liner Notes can be found here.

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