Tuesday, July 16, 2013

Fifty Songs for Summer

Summer wouldn't be the same without music; for me, walking around in the sun with headphones on is the very definition of summertime. There are several albums that I've already earmarked as this year's Summer Favourites (La Costa Perdida, Partygoing, AWOO), but it's also nice to equip the old iPod with a summer playlist, a mixture of stuff that I can throw on whenever I'm feeling sunny.

So here's my summer mix for this year. Put this badboy on shuffle and it'll be sunshine and smiles a go-go. It's 50 tracks long, but don't worry - while they're all highly recommended, I won't talk about all of them.
  • Please Don't Kill Me by Reptar (from Body Faucet)
  • George by Suckers (from Candy Salad)
  • California English by Vampire Weekend (from Contra)
  • Queen of Hearts by Fucked Up (from David Comes to Life)

    Can a song this angry-sounding really be described as 'summery'? I think so. I love the boy/girl vocals, and was a little disappointed that David Comes to Life didn't have more of that going on. In spite of the shouting, this is actually one of the album's more cheerful tracks, about two people meeting and taking a liking to each other. "Hello my name is David!/Your name is Veronica!/Let's be together!/Let's fall in love!"

  • California Girls by The Magentic Fields (from Distortion)
  • Apollo and the Buffalo and Anna Anna Anna Oh! by Sunset Rubdown (from Dragonslayer)
  • 3's & 7's by Queens of the Stone Age (from Era Vulgaris)
  • Still Young by Allo Darlin' (from Europe)
  • Red Light by The Strokes (from First Impressions of Earth)
  • Meet Me in the Basement by Broken Social Scene (from Forgiveness Rock Record)
  • A Little Less Sixteen Candles, A Little More "Touch Me" by Fall Out Boy (from From Under the Cork Tree)

    What can I say? This takes me back to the Summer of '06, when I did two weeks of work experience in a Save the Children charity shop. They always had Radio 1 on, and this song got played a lot. See also: Smile by Lily Allen, Smiling Faces by Gnarls Barkley, that really annoying Busta Rhymes song.

  • Mrs Playing Dead by The Crocketts (from The Great Brain Robbery)
  • Hang the Noose by Woodenbox with a Fistful of Fivers (from Home and the Wildhunt)
  • It's Over Already by The Murderburgers (from How to Ruin Your Life)
  • Tanks by Let's Wrestle (from In the Court of the Wrestling Let's)
  • Theme from PSB by Public Service Broadcasting (from Inform-Educate-Entertain)
  • Peaches in the Summertime by Camper Van Beethoven (from La Costa Perdida)
  • In a Small Body by Titus Andronicus (from Local Business)
  • Breathless by Nick Cave & The Bad Seeds (from Abbatoir Blues/The Lyre of Orpheus)
  • Make Me by Fang Island (from Major)
  • Despair by Yeah Yeah Yeahs (from Mosquito)

    "My sun is your sun/My sun is your sun/My sun is your sun/My sun is your sun..."

  • Without a Backing Track by Kid Canaveral (from Now That You Are a Dancer)
  • Olé! Tarantula by Robyn Hitchcock & The Venus 3 (from Olé! Tarantula)
  • Sensitive New Age Guy by John Grant (from Pale Green Ghosts)
  • Sleep Forver by Motorifik (from Secret Things)
  • Banging Camp by The Hold Steady (from Separation Sunday)
  • The Only Living Boy and Girl by The Crimea (from Square Moon)
  • Steel Your Girl by Neon Neon (from Stainless Style)
  • Clone by Metric (from Synthetica)
  • Bocata de Sangre by Siesta! (from Terroruterino)
  • ESP by Hooded Fang (from Tosta Mista)
  • In The Now by Edwyn Collins (from Understated)
  • Saturday by Sparklehorse (from Vivadixiesubmarinetransmissionplot)
  • Gator by Cave Painting (from Votive Life

    That's a live session in the video, but it doesn't deviate too far from the album version. I love the xylophone sound that kicks this song off; it makes me feel like I'm on a tropical island. Or it makes me wish I was on a tropical island, at least.

  • San Francisco by Foxygen (from We Are the 21st Century Ambassadors of Peace and Magic)
  • New Alphabet by Eels (from Wonderful, Glorious)
  • Light And Day by The Polyphonic Spree (from The Beginning Stages of...)
  • Disenchanted by My Chemical Romance (from The Black Parade)

    I know, I know. I felt that way too, once, back when I was the right age for My Chemical Romance. Instead of joining the army of dyed-black fans, I joined the army of people who made jokes about the dyed-black fans, thinking that I was clever and cool for disliking a band who sang about having emotions. But dislike turned to guilty pleasure, and now that I've grown up a little, that guilty pleasure has turned to unencumbered enjoyment. The Black Parade is brilliant, and this track in particular makes me feel like a fourteen-year-old in the height of summer. If you wrote MCR off years ago, give them another try today. Go on, the video's right there; give that play button a click.

  • All The Small Things by blink-182 (from Enema of the State)
  • Tell Me What's Shaking (Except This Building) by Spencer McGarry Season (from Episode 1)
  • Maureen by Young Knives (from Oh Happiness)
  • Juxtapozed With U by Super Furry Animals (from Rings Around the World)
  • Blood Orange Sun by Cherry Poppin' Daddies (from Susquehanna)
  • Living, Loving, Partygoing by Future Bible Heroes (from Partygoing)

    I've talked about it before, but I definitely think that this is my song of the summer. A lot of people I know have come back from university for the holidays, and this little ditty complements my sudden increase in social activity rather well.

  • Pretty Pink Ribbon by Cake (from Comfort Eagle)
  • Am I Wrong by Mikal Cronin (from MCII)
  • Brooklyn's On Fire! by Nicole Atkins (from Neptune City)
  • Learning the Lie by The Hidden Cameras (from AWOO)
  • No Tic, All Tac by Tullycraft (from Lost in Light Rotation)
  • Let's Pretend by Tindersticks (from Curtains)
Which songs are heavy in your headphones this summer? Suggestions in the comments, or you can tweet them to me if you'd prefer. I'm @TheAlbumWall.


  1. Spotify playlist by any chance? Becuse you're wonderful?

  2. Also 'Watching Birds' by Stornoway from Beachcomber's Windowsill.

  3. As per your request: https://play.spotify.com/user/thealbumwall/playlist/44TPUH1IEf6SBoaeqr3D9t

    Seven of these songs weren't on Spotify, so if you want the full list, you'll have to seek them out for yourself.