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Let’s Listen Up to Some New Music Playlists This Weekend

You know the drill: 5 new local songs, 5 new non-local songs.

Photos provided|

Molly Brandt, Nana Benz du Togo

I'd been hoping to get these playlists online earlier in the week, but pressing matters delayed me. I only mention that so you're not looking for any of today's new releases down below. There'll be time enough to listen to what's even newer next week.

Local Picks

Molly Brandt, “Bluff Country Paradise”

There’s a lot to like about Brandt’s lovely latest album, Surrender to the Night. That catch in her voice and that pedal steel accompaniment are pure country, but the settings are pure Minnesota, right down to the title of "Eagles 34" or this plainspoken description of a southeastern Minnesotan landscape that moves her “gently like a needle in a groove.”

Maria Isa feat. Sophia Eris, “Blah Blah Blah”

The elected representative for Minnesota House District 65B continues to make a point of reminding us that she’s not about to leave her music career behind on this high energy tag-team effort.

Cole Pulice, “If I Don’t See You in the Future, I’ll See You in the Pasture”

“Did this motherfucker really just put a 22-minute ambient track on this mix?” I imagine you saying (because for some reason I only ever imagine readers criticizing my choices, and don't think my therapist hasn't noticed). Yes, I did—it's a long weekend and you've got time to listen. Experimental saxophonist Pulice, along with collaborator Lynn Avery, relocated to Oakland recently, as documented in this thorough Pitchfork profile from January, but we'll continue claiming them for now.

Dwynell Roland, “Peace of Mind”

The Lazerbeak track serves up the best of both worlds: lush, layered production with a stripped down 808 beat at the core. Roland sounds a little anxious about having a good time (who doesn't there days?); his performance is bolstered by a vocal-filtered feature from Innanet James. 

Why Not, “Nauseous”

Last fall these local guitar-poppers opened for Annie DiRusso, who has made a calling card of this yearning neo-slacker anthem. (Does any question epitomize our era of diminished expectations better than “What if I cleaned my room and we fucked?”) Their version isn't a huge departure, but it does feel like their own, and gives a nice gender-twist to the chorus of “I wanna be your pretty girl/I’ll never be your pretty girl.”

Non-Local Picks

Be Your Own Pet!, “Goodtime”

These former Nashville teens return after a 15-year-hiatus feeling their age if not acting it. "I can't be that way no more, I got two kids and a mortgage. What the fuck?" shouts Jemina Pearl, and if you think that’s rough, pal, try being the one who still wants to go out and can't convince your responsibly adult friends to leave the house. 

Charly Bliss, “You Don’t Even Know Me Anymore”

What with guitars settled lower in the mix and Eva Hendricks playing up the chirp in her voice, plenty will call this their pop move, but I ask you, weren’t they plenty pop before? 

Carly Rae Jepsen, “Shy Boy”

As an occasionally less-than-outgoing fellow myself, I'm always a little suspicious when a sexy pop star claims to have a thing for the reticent—you've gotta be super hot to pull off the shy-but-irresistible thing. So credit to Carly and her discofied beat for convincing me this song's not a total sham.

Nana Benz du Togo, “J’ai compris”

“Electro-voodoo-soul” is what these West African ladies, named for their region's textile sellers, call their lively mix of tradition and innovation, with nimble basslines rapped out on PVC tubes and strong unified chorus of strong voices contrasting a higher pitched solo voice that seems questioning and mocking. I'm smitten.

Pardoner, “Are You Free Tonight?” 

Slack motherfuckers that they are, their guitars squall with constrained unkemptness in the background as they lament “While I was getting high/Everybody passed me by” yet conclude “That’s all right with me.” That’s the spirit, fellas.

Wanna get a local song considered for the playlist? To make things easy on both of us, email keith@racketmn.com with MONDAY PLAYLIST in the subject header. (Don’t, as in do NOT, DM or text: If I’m in a good mood, I’ll just ask you to send an email; if I’m in a bad mood I’ll just ignore it.)

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