Music On, World Off: Safe Space Of Sound

It is a painfully easy admission that the past couple of weeks have been uniquely challenging in ways that no one saw coming. Even the positive of the midterm election results feels tempered by the pipe bombs and gun violence that came before and after, so if there’s anything in particular (a devotion, person, food, puppy, etc.) that helps ease your way through times such as these, I hope that you’re reaching for it.

For myself, it’s always olives (tasty!) and music (loving) and some of that music has landed in my updated Spotify MUSIC ON, WORLD OFF playlist. Consider it a safe space of sound.

“Does your God really give a damn?”

Matt Simons

Hell of a question, isn’t it? Indeed it is and it’s profoundly yet beautifully posed by singer/songwriter Matt Simons in “Amy’s Song.” Backstory, you say? I got you covered:

“I first met Amy (Ames Music) in a studio in Silverlake, Los Angeles. We had a writing session scheduled and we needed a topic to write about. So, as songwriters do we started discussing the goings-on in our lives to try and find some inspiration. Amy told us about how she was dating a woman whose parents are so strictly religious, if they found out about the two of them being together, they would disown their own daughter. It also brought up memories of Amy’s own experiences with intolerance and her family/community not accepting her for who she is. We decided to write about that. This is Amy’s Song.” – Matt Simons

Once you’ve digested that, this Friday also sees new releases of goodness from musical loves Imagine Dragons who kicked out the full album, Origins, only 18 months after releasing Evolve just because they could and that’s where you’ll find the quirky, eye-opening song, “West Coast” (as well as the brutal honesty of “Bad Liar”). Happy dating, D & A.

Imagine Dragons

Mr. Jamie N Commons, whose heady and soulful blues-rock stylings we’ve come to know and love just rolled out something a wee bit funk slinkier than we’re used to with the single, “Paper Dreams.” If this song a harbinger of what’s to come from his eventual full-length debut, I highly approve of it.

Jamie N Commons

Stepping outside of her Against Me! box, Laura Jane Grace gets her grazing, blazing and punk life honesty on with Laura Jane Grace & The Devouring Mothers. From their debut album, Bought To Rot (out today) comes the complicated romance of “The Airplane Song.”

Laura Jane Grace & The Devouring Mothers

Say hello to the young UK crooner (and awfully well-tuned for his aged) Zak Abel with “You Come First” and his countryman Jordan Max singing about “Me, Mary, and My Guitar” on his sophomore EP, Tales Of Us, which is also out today.

Also in the playlist mix are the Revivalists with song and love for you with “Got Love,” Morgxn leaning forward with “Carry The Weight,” the lovely Lauren Daigle sharing and singing her faith with “Still Rolling Stones” and then there’s Los Angeles local Zachary Kibbe who keeps kicking out singles that wind up in television shows or commercials…like “It Feels Electric.” Granted, it feels a shade like Portugal. The Man but I love Portugal. The Man and I like Zach, so I’m not mad at it.

Yes, there is more so to discover from Ivy Levan and RØMANS and Talk Time and the Candescents and William Elliot Whitmore (bless that man’s Iowa soul), so cue this playlist in the hope that you find a new song/artist that you truly dig and, perhaps, even gives you ease. That’s why it always a grand idea to turn the MUSIC ON, WORLD OFF.