Much like the classic mixtape, Tracklisted presents a collection of songs under a selected theme, which you can check out below. Click on the provided Spotify playlist and listen to this week’s arrangements while you read a few words about the selections.
NYC-born, LA-based alternative rock band FOXTRAX have been making the rounds on airwaves along both coasts and on streaming services throughout the interwebs over the past year, and they’re set to release a new EP, Nothing Lasts Forever, which should just about break them through completely.
The trio took some time out of their busy schedule to provide us some of the tunes they’ve been listening to lately that have gotten them through their recent songwriting output, and you can listen to it below in a neatly-packaged playlist.
Beck — Dear Life
If Elliot Smith had a baby with George Harrison’s guitar tone on the White Album, their child would be this amazingly awesome song. I have always found it incredible that Beck is such a musical chameleon, and he proves it yet again on this track. The piano is so honky-tonky, which I dig very much. When the song starts out it sounds like it could be played by some guy sitting in a saloon in 1830 or something. Good for you Beck!
Nothing But Thieves — Sorry
When I first heard this song I actually couldn’t believe it was Nothing But Thieves because it is so different from their other stuff. This song has one of those melodies that is just infectious! I basically walk around all day with this song stuck in my head. This song is so well crafted and the tones are also great! My favorite part of the track is the bridge, which seems like a tribute to some early Killers records.
Grizzly Bear — Morning Sound
This track strikes me as particularly odd for Grizzly Bear because it’s so “alt rock,” which I dig! I have always loved this band for how strange they are. This song seems like they all sat in a room and said to one another, “what do you think it would be like if we just made a straight ahead driving rock song?” To which someone else responds, “how the F**k do we do that?….Oh well here goes nothing!” They drilled it! So happy when I hear this song pop on Alt Nation!
Bon Iver — 33 “God”
I think Bon Iver is so unique and fabulous! I loved his intimate early stuff, but his most recent record is so Kanye, which is such a bizarre and cool mix. I mean who would really think to mix beautiful, emotional, lush folk music with abrasive hip hop beats? Well Bon Iver nailed it so hard and I love it. This song, in particular, gives me a musical hard on! All my senses are tingling on this one! It starts out so classic! Like for real when it starts my first thought is that this is a Bonnie Rait song. There is a freaking banjo on the song for god sake! Then all the sudden it drops in these loud, crunchy sounding drums. They are so distorted and it is jarring in the best way. I will be thinking about for years why this weird mix of styles works so well here. But, whatever it is, I admire the hell out of this track!
Vance Joy — Lay It On Me
This song rips my heart out. The lyrics are as masterfully bittersweet as we’ve come to expect from Vance Joy, but the rise and fall in dynamics on this record is what does it for me. The almost military inspired snare build into the horn filled hook, “lay it all on me now,” paints the perfect picture.
Francis and the Lights ft Chance the Rapper — May I Have This Dance (Remix)
This song is all about mood. The tones (albeit ’80s inspired) are perfect. The Phil Collins-ness of the drums juxtaposed against the modern electronic elements make this song feel fresh yet familiar and Chance delivers an amazing verse that ties the song together. The tenderness and vulnerability in his voice truly make this song feel like a last ditch attempt to win back the love of your life.
Lord Huron — The Night We Met
This song feels so classic and organic. The storytelling is evocative, immersive, and relatable. The restraint in dynamic and haunting harmonies gives this song its power. To me, this song is a throwback to everything I grew up loving about rock and roll. Lord Huron flies a bit under the radar, but they’re an amazing band.
Atlas Genius — Trojans
This song is the best of indie rock ‘n roll in a nutshell. Danceable, driving beats, amazing tone and thoughtful lyrics. You can feel the passion in each note. These guys are an inspiration.
Alice Merton — No Roots
This jam makes me want to get up and move. The rhythms are infectious! Good luck not bouncing up and down when listening to this track. The modern tones juxtaposed against a timeless melody make this a top new release in 2017. I relate a ton to the lyrics as well. Our band recently moved from New York to Los Angeles, and at this point of my life, I feel like my roots are in flux! Everything in my life is changing and sometimes it’s hard to remember what life was like back in New York before the move. Most of my family is on the West Coast now.
The Strokes — You Only Live Once
This one makes me feel nostalgic. It’s the perfect fall tune with a hot cup of coffee in your hand. Makes you realize the fleeting nature of life and the human power of letting go of anger and things that hold you back! It’s an incredible commentary on human nature. I also think that this groove is one of the Strokes’ best! Fab Moretti’s use of a 16th hi-hat pattern makes this song that much more intriguing to me! I used to crank this song back when I was attending Syracuse University. It takes me back to that certain place. A contemplative place reflecting on my past relationships and former lovers.
Glass Animals — Agnes
If I had to sum up this song in one word that word would be INTERSTELLAR! The hook in this song is their strongest yet. The refrain gives me the chills! I have felt this feeling many times before. Missing someone and feeling lost without them. Even though you know that they are gone and things will never be the same, you still remember all of the good times you had. The tones in this song are so unique. It’s a true modern masterpiece. Good luck not humming this hook in the shower the day after hearing it.
Missio — Bottom of the Deep Blue Sea
This moody jam vibes so hard this time of year. The intoxicating groove and the haunting melody take me to a place when I feel like the walls are caving in around me. Everyone goes through tough times in their life and for some reason this song takes me to that place of realization. That moment when you realize you have been feeling down for a bit. That feeling of “I have just hit rock bottom and now I need to start climbing back out of it.” The drum groove is fantastic. The syncopation gives the song a sense of chaos. This one gives me the feels!
You can get more information on FOXTRAX at their website. Listen to “Everything Changes,” off that upcoming EP, below.