#OnTheList with Xtine is a weekly feature from Fresh 102.7’s Christine Richie that will be highlighting all things music and more, from her favorite emerging artists, top female vocalists, and much, much more!
Lately, this has been my life: I get excited when I hear an artist is putting out new music, listen to it, and usually mutter to myself, “ugh this is terrible.” One of the reasons my boss thinks I’m a pain is because I’m usually underwhelmed when he plays me something new. He claims that I don’t like anything, but that’s not true. I’m just very picky when it comes to music. I was very glad when Ed Sheeran came back; “Shape of You” was one of the first songs to get me excited again!
I was in a full on funk. I was tired of listening to the music on my phone and there weren’t any new albums I loved. There were weeks I actually sat on the subway for my daily hour commutes in silence. SILENCE! I’m not completely crazy though, I still had my headphones on, so no creeps took that as an invitation to talk to me. Thankfully, I’ve found some new artists and songs that I’ve had on repeat lately. New artists will come with a different list, but in the meantime here are the songs that have been sound tracking my commute lately.
Lorde – “Liability”
I’ve always appreciated Lorde‘s talent, but her songs have never touched me. If that doesn’t happen, I’ll never fully embrace your music. When I first heard “Liability” it kicked me right in the gut. Finally having to admit you’re a liability in someone’s life instead of someone who makes it better is a bitter pill to swallow. Not only do I love the lyrics, but this is a new, more vulnerable side of Lorde we haven’t seen and I like it. Let’s hope there’s more of this on her new album Melodrama, out June 16th.
John Mayer – “Emoji of a Wave”
Here we go again with my love/hate relationship with John Mayer; LOVE the song, HATE the name!
I really wish it was just called “Wave.” I don’t want the word emoji or an emoji near a song title, or a lyric for that matter. Seeing the title, I didn’t have high hopes for this song and it turned out to be my favorite on The Search for Everything: Wave 2.
I stand corrected. It’s a great song about going through something and not being able to do anything about it so you just have to ride it out. Sitting in a feeling until it passes is one of the most difficult things. Anyone with anxiety understands that feeling. Really beautiful harmonies on this one, too. He gets some help from Beach Boy Al Jardine and his son. The Search for Everything comes out April 14th.
Imagine Dragons – “Believer”
This is the first song my boss and I agreed on in a long time. You can definitely tell it’s Imagine Dragons, but they did experiment a bit with their sound. I like when a band grows a little with every new album. It still has what I love though: big drums, biting lyrics, and Dan’s flow and falsetto. It rocks!
Cold War Kids – “Can We Hang On”
I did an Up Close and Personal with these guys and it’s clear they’re very talented. I liked some of their stuff but never felt passionate about them. I’ve always loved Nathan’s voice, but usually his lyrics are lost on me. This is finally a song that I can relate to! He describes it as “a hopeful love song that looks back with nostalgia on the good old days but is uncertain about the future.” I didn’t hear it as hopeful, but that’s obviously me projecting my experience with relationships onto the song. Either way, it works for me! The one thing you can count on is their distinct sound, but I’m hoping for more lyrics that speak to me on their new album LA Divine, coming out April 7th.
Young Rising Sons – “Carry On”
Young Rising Sons’ journey as a band began in Red Bank, NJ in 2010. We played their song “High” on Fresh back in 2014 and then didn’t hear from them until now, minus one original member. I wouldn’t even know these are the same guys who recorded “High” and that’s a good thing. It’s just a simple song about being there for someone. The message is what has me listening to this one over and over.
Barns Courtney – “Hands”
I had to include one British singer/songwriter! Unfortunately, Barns Courtney doesn’t have an accent, but he makes incredible music! I love all his stuff, but I’m always partial to songs that tell a story and this is a great one. We’ve all been there: you meet someone in a bar and have that instant attraction. You have some fun and then they slip out and you must find them! He doesn’t have a full album out yet, but he put out an EP The Dull Drums in February. I highly recommend you give it a listen.
Keywest – “Something Beautiful”
Keywest is a mix of guys from Dublin and London whom I met at a Gavin James show in NYC. I had a lovely chat with the guitar player, James Lock. I was impressed enough to go home and check out their music and am now a fan. Their newest song — “Something Beautiful” — is about seeing someone you love with someone else, but knowing you would be better for them. We’ve all felt that way and now you have a song that understands just what you’re going through.
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