What’s Making Me Happy This Week?

I want to establish a weekly series on this blog called “What’s Making Me Happy This Week,” lifted from everyone’s favorite segment on the best pop culture podcast. But somehow, despite the okay week I’ve had and the sunshine outside, it seems wrong to publish a column called “something something happy” today. You know, with the Tomahawks in the south and the truck in the north.  But then again, when would it be truly appropriate to post a happy post? 

So here are my two favorite morsels of pop culture: 

* Stown, the This American Life/Serial podcast. It’s amazing, TAL storytelling at its best. But be warned, if you’re struggling with depression: Only listen to it on a good day. It’s not an abstract, whodunnit true crime story, but rather the intimate detail of a shit town and a man struggling with the world and his place in it.  

*Good news: There is a new At the Drive-In album on the horizon and the first few singles are actually good. For your sad/angry/happy/content  weekend listening pleasure, here is a Spotify playlist of the entire At the Drive-In discography. (The end of Invalid Litter Dept. always feels cathartic.)

“True Believer” is a comparatively restrained, slow clipping. track, and the new video matches the subdued-but-intense atmosphere. Splendor & Misery, the 2016 concept album by the avant-rap group featuring Tony Award winner Daveed Diggs, was just nominated for a Hugo Award in the category Best Dramatic Presentation (Short Form)

Fascinating. 

“Let’s hear it for your third attempt at trying to hack it in the real world”

“Snitch Jacket” is a great new song by Two Inch Astronaut, offering, as Lars Gotrich for NPR Music puts it, “real talk – whether you’re a 20-something or just endlessly haunted by past failures.” Two Inch Astronaut is post-punk in the same way I’m post-graduate. Potentially professional, perennially yearning. 

Two Inch Astronaut’s new record  “Can You Please Not Help” will be out June 2nd via Exploding In Sound Records

“The Future’s Under Fire, The Past is Gaining Ground”

The great Japandroids are back, the Candian duo will release their new album Near To The Wild Heart Of Life in January 2017, available for pre-order on bandcamp. Already streaming is the title track off the record, and it speaks for itself. 

http://bandcamp.com/EmbeddedPlayer/album=2689128306/size=large/bgcol=ffffff/linkcol=0687f5/tracklist=false/track=304902461/transparent=true/

I’m excited.

Courtney Barnett: Nobody Really Cares If You Don’t Go To The Party

Australian Courtney Barnett, my favorite artist of 2015, brought one of my favorite songs of 2015 to the Late Show with Stephen Colbert. 

Cool live music on television: Perfect for us people who wanna go out but wanna stay in.