- it must currently reside on my computer (who the hell actually listens to CDs any more?)
- somewhere in the album the word "summer" must appear--either in a title of a song, or in the album title itself
- I must have good reason for recommending this particular album to you (that is no namby-pamby "I like it" sort of explanations, and I will provide links to my Lastfm thing, so you may listen to selections, if they are available.
The Four Corners, Say You're a Scream
It really is too bad that I can find no samples of Say You're a Scream. They are available on iTunes, ahem, if you are that kind of person. In any case, this album, complete with its garage-core earthiness, both represents the grittiness and the dreaminess of summer. Interspersed with hard-jamming rock tracks, you have songs that make you just want to float on a river and let the heat just slide right by you. Too bad the band went defunct back in the early 2000's. They only put out this one big album. It is a honking big one, complete with 15 songs for your summertime pleasure. Check out "Summer's Time" for a nice blend of the hard rocking and dreamy summeriness I mentioned earlier. I guess you can't go far wrong with a girl singer in the summertime. There is something Laika or My Bloody Valentine about this band but they don't quite have the wall of sound that both those bands had. Hmm. (Aha! Some scandalously accurate teens have listed them as "The Four Corners" and uploaded tracks. Go listen.)
Blonde Redhead, 23
While Blonde Redhead is generally a fall-kind-of-band, 23 has a decidedly upbeat feel to it, with plenty of summery vocals from yet another woman singer, Kazu Makino. The band's winding melodies drive like a 77 Camaro through a hot summer night. This is definitely night-time summer music, but summer music it is. Deep, dark water comes to mind. Again, there are no links available to the songs on 23 available to me, but I'm sure if you peck around you'll find a video or something.
Art Brut, It's a Bit Complicated
The sheer oddity and rocking good time of Art Brut makes them a fine, fine summer band. Art Brut is fun. Summer is fun. You should be having fun. Sadly, you won't be able to listen to It's a Bit Complicated because it is not available me to play. Find some, however, because you'll be impressed with the singer's delivery. (I think we've talked about that here before.) Hit! Hit! Direct hit! Art Bruts are you read?! Hold the presses! A video of Direct Hit is available! The I, Claudius theme seems appropriate to summer too. What's more summer than Italy? Rome? Intrigue?
Decemberists, The Crane Wife
Now some might argue that this album is not a summer album at all, but one better suited for the heart of deep winter. With a song, however, like "The Pefect Crime" and "Summersong" such a critic would be drastically disproved. "The Perfect Crime" is folk club music, complete with disco beat. You can just see the sweat dripping down the disco dancers backs. Go figure that a band that is known for it literary lyrics would create such a nice cross-over song. It is regretful that you will not be able to sample it, as it is not available to me to provide you. "Summersong," is much more like the sea shanties that one expects from the Decemberists, complete with accordion. There needs to be more rock music with accordions. Fuck the cowbell, go accordion. Ah well, I, again, have no sample to give you, but I can give you a nice lyric: "Summer goes away and quietly, gets swallowed by a whale." Peppery skin. Nice.
Pogues, Streams of Whiskey
This must be the most appropriate title for an album ever. This is a live recording of the Pogues and is an absolute train wreck both because of a crappy recording and because Shane MacGowan and everyone else is completely, flat-out shit-faced. Now that's summer! Woo hoo! Here is a slightly less inebriated version of "Summer in Siam." And as a side note: you know you have a drinking problem when you are thrown out of an Irish Celtic-folk-fushion-punk band because you drink too much (MacGowan).
There you go! 5 summertime albums for your summery enjoyment.
Crack open a beer and get to listening.
Listening to: Yo La Tengo - Don't Have To Be Sad