https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eDwi-8n054sHere’s some of the stuff I listen to drift away.
From Now On – Supertramp
A track from Supertramp’s Even in the Quietest Moments… album. It’s a piano-driven, whimsical song with some captivating saxophone parts, and the outro, which just speaks to me all too well, and if I was a film director I’d use it at the end of a bittersweet comedy-drama.
Guess I’ll always have to be
Living in a fantasy
It’s you for you, and me for me
From now on
窓 (Mado – Window) – Mishio Ogawa
Ogawa was one of the most interesting Japanese singers of the 80s/90s. Apart from the solo career, she participated in a few other projects, including bands like Chakra or Wha-ha-ha. New wave, avant-garde, city pop… Her music escapes the usual categories. 窓 is like a rainbow after the rain.
太阳の破片 (A fragment of the sun) – Yutaka Ozaki 尾崎豊
One of Ozaki’s most touching songs. I heard several versions of it and all of them give me chills. Both saxophone and Yutaka vocal chords give their best, and I usually stop doing whatever I’m doing just to enjoy this tune.
Friends And Dream – The Checkers
The Checkers are probably in the first place on the to-do list for a blog post here. The track comes from the latter part of their career, with Fumiya Fuji singing the main vocals, and the title is kind of self-explanatory. Friends and Dream is about growing up, changing, but at the same time it tries to express that some things will always stay the same.
ゆくえ – カネコアヤノ (Ayano Kaneko)
It’s like sitting alone in an armchair in a darkened room. While most of Kaneko’s catalogue is fairly upbeat, this one is brooding and deep.
Great cover by the youtuber ミレーの枕
Leaving Home Ain’t Easy – Queen – I had this on repeat when I traveled to Japan last year, and now it holds a special place in my heart.
Doing All Right – Queen
The song was featured on Queen’s eponymous first album. I can’t stress enough how much people miss, not listening to the early records of this band. There’s so much soul and color to these songs, and Doing All Right shines as one of my favorites.
Where will I be this time tomorrow
Jumped in joy or sinking in sorrow
Anyway I should be doing all right
O sobie samym – Robert Gawliński
A very melancholic and personal song, written about relationships and all the unknown which future may bring.
Ballada o dobrym człowieku – Chłopcy z Placu Broni
An immensely popular rock band formed in the late 80s. They had a string of hits at the time, which now are mostly considered Polish rock staple songs. Bogdan Łyszkiewicz, the leader and the vocalist of the band had this John Lennon vibe around him. He tragically died in a car crash in 2000. Beautiful song with a love, peace and faith message.
Nie pytaj o Polskę – Obywatel G.C.
A strangely intimate song, given its political backdrop. Probably one of the most important Polish songs of the last 50 years.
Gondry (공드리) – Primary – Oh Hyuk & Lim Kim
Primary is one of my favorite Korean producers and I love how he gets all those amazing artists to join him for music-making. The song is a tribute to director Michel Gondry, and both Oh Hyuk and Lim Kim’s soothing voices are perfectly fit to the equally calming and visually stunning music video, somewhat inspired by the works of Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind writer.
Both versions are equally wonderful
기억의 습작 – 김동률 (An Essay of Memory – Kim Dong Ryul/Exhibition)
A ballad by Korean duo Exhibition from their first album from 1994. Further popularized as an OST for the hit movie Architecture 101 (featuring Han Ga In, Suzy, Uhm Tae Woong and Lee Je Hoon) and several dramas. Romantic and nostalgic to the core.
足首 (Ashikubi) – Kinoko Teikoku
An epic, lengthy shoegaze tune by Kinoko Teikoku from their first mini-album. Eerie and mystical. I love Chiaki Satō’s voice and delivery.
Reasons to believe – Bruce Springsteen
Springsteen’s Nebraska is a dark, almost depressing ride. This track closes this gloomy album – does it offer a glimpse of hope? Again, we get a bunch of disheartening stories. Yet, the Boss is amazed, that people even at worst situations do find a reason to carry on. Incredible song-writing.
Lord won’t you tell us, tell us what does it mean
At the end of every hard earned day people find some reason to believe
天国はまだ遠い – Lovely Summer Chan – in a sense it’s similar to 足首 mentioned earlier, though even more shoegaze-y and even more sensual.
Estranged – Guns n’ Roses
The final part to November Rain/Don’t Cry music video trilogy. While my music taste grew and evolved over the years, GNR and Metallica will remain as the two pivotal bands amongst the stuff I listen to. Estranged is a song which continues to have an impact on my brain on every listen, so that just speaks for itself. And Slash coming outta the ocean for the guitar solo is just too cool.
Silver Springs – Fleetwood Mac
How this track not ended up on Rumours will continue to puzzle music historians until the end of time. One of Stevie Nicks’s finest efforts, and every second of it is mesmerizing.
Endless Nights – オフコース (Off Course)
Off Course – was a huge folk rock/AOR band from 70/80s. They specialized in vocal harmonies like Simon & Garfunkel or Bee Gees, and produced tons of killer tunes. Endless Nights is an English remake of their たそがれ (Tasogare – Twilight) song, with lyrics by Randy Goodrum.
Where hearts can hide
Where time stands still
And all memories die
Where nothing’s real
In long endless nights
Wish You Were Here – Fleetwood Mac
While Stevie Nicks and Lindsey Buckingham are the most recognizable members of FM, Christine McVie is just as important to this band, and this tune is a perfect example of why she should be getting the credit she deserves.
ありあまる富 (Ariamaru Tomi) – Shiina Ringo
Ringo has a bunch of songs in her catalogue which are good for thinking sessions. This particular one gets more listens for some reason these days. Uhhm Ringo-san, could you please make some good music again.
さよならの向う側 – 山口百恵 (Momoe Yamaguchi)
The late part of Momoe Yamaguchi’s career saw so many incredible albums and songs. Sayonara no Mukougawa (The Other Side of Goodbye) is the one that gripped my heart the tightest. It always amazed me how Yamaguchi – as a twenty-year-old girl – sang all those painful songs like someone with a whole baggage of life experience.
The She Did… – Jane’s Addiction
There’s funky in-your-face Jane’s Addiction, and then there’s the psychedelia. Then She Did… is such a spiritual experience.