Just a quick post to: A. Let you know I’m still alive (been working on some fun future bloggishness) B. Pimp my two-part “YHT Top Ten Albums Extravaganza,” which starts tomorrow, and C. Pass along a link to iTunes, where you can pre-order Passenger’s soon-to-be-released album, All The Little Lights. I learned about Passenger — real name Michael Rosenberg — this summer, and I’ve thoroughly enjoyed 2010’s Flight of the Crow, but shit got real when I saw a video of Rosenberg performing his song “I Hate” at a venue called The Borderline in London. “I Hate” is such an elegantly written, funny and hope-in-humanity-reaffirming piece of social commentary, setting its sights on talkative concertgoers, fake Facebook friendships and, in a verse that makes me want to stand up and applaud, The X-Factor. I wanted to stand up and applaud again when I scanned the track list for his upcoming album and saw that the same live version of “I Hate” that I love so much would be included as the finale. Check out the video above, listen below and click here to pre-order All The Little Lights. And don’t forget, when you pre-order something, you usually forget that you paid for it by the time it comes out, so it’s pretty much free! (Editor’s Note: You Hear That Accounting Services L.L.C. is not legally certified to provide financial advice.)
Yesterday, I wrote about Passenger’s album Flight of the Crow, and mentioned how “The One You Love” is a great example of Michael Rosenberg’s highly engaging songwriting. What I DIDN’T mention (Quick Relationship Tip: Withholding information is OK when and only when dealing with gifts, engagement plans and blog topics) is that “The One You Love” also features an amazing Australian singer-songwriter named Kate Miller-Heidke. While writing yesterday’s post, I got seriously sidetracked when I started sampling her music, and I’ve been excited to share what I found ever since. First, her Wikipedia page led me to “Are You Ready?” (Yes, it’s true. I got a hot music tip from Wikipedia. I’m trying not to dwell on what that means … for me or for society in general), a tune New Yorkers might recognize from a recent state lottery commercial. I loved the song’s energy and memorable lyrics, so I dug a little deeper and found what may be my favorite piece of social (networking) commentary in recent memory. “Are You Fucking Kidding Me” is a brilliantly written, tongue-in-cheek tune that chronicles a phenomenon many of us have encountered — the ex-significant-other Facebook friend request. Miller-Heidke’s impeccable comedic timing, sharp writing and dynamic voice all work together to skewer the “narcissistic asshole” of a requester, and I can’t recommend this live version highly enough. Listen below and click here to grab her EP from iTunes.
Powerful music can make you get up and dance, give you goosebumps, or heal you when you’re feeling broken, but I believe one of the greatest gifts a song can give you is the feeling that you’re not alone (cue Mavis and Jeff). No matter who you are, it feels good to know that someone else has gone through what you’re going through. The ability to gather one’s experiences and piece them together in a way that engages others separates good songwriters from exceptional ones, and Passenger most assuredly belongs in that second category. I found out about Passenger (real name Michael Rosenberg) when Richmond Playlist tweeted a link to the video for “Settled,” a new song of Rosenberg’s that blew me away with its beautiful and bittersweet lyrics (I believe I actually said “Wow” out loud, even though no one else was around at the time). After receiving a follow-up recommendation from the same trusted source, I gave a listen to Passenger’s most recent album, Flight of the Crow. Released nearly a year ago, this record is comprised of one powerful moment after another. Some are joyful, some are painful, but these moments engage the listener with stark emotion and insight, and no track did so more for me than “The One You Love.” This lilting yet joyful tune about companionship immediately sucked me into its narrative, calling up specific memories and inviting me to count my blessings for the relationships in my life. Check it out below, along with the rest of Flight of the Crow, and buy the album from iTunes here.