Tag Archives: Wye Oak

Music and 2012

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I hate many things about year-end lists. For one, I hate the phrase you see when you encounter a list —  “It’s that time of the year” — which is really code for “OK, here’s a list because we need to provide something to click on while everybody goes on a two-week holiday bender of eggnog and Christmas cookies.”

But I also love many things about these lists. Sure, they’re gimmicky and lazy. But they’re also important. Life is fast, and hard, and busy. And sometimes, we need people to remind us what happened. I have been doing this list here for a couple years now. And I’ll go ahead and recycle what I wrote last year. Sure, it’s lazy. But then again, so are lists.

When I think back to (2012), I know I won’t think of one monolithic theme or narrative. Life doesn’t work that way. Not for me. But I will remember certain moments… and certain songs. So here we go, finally, the 12 songs I will remember from 2012.

12 Civilian — Wye Oak

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11 Same Love — Macklemore and Ryan Lewis

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10 Swimming Pools — Kendrick Lamar

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9 Hold On — Alabama Shakes

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8 The House That Heaven Built — Japandroids

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7 Take A Walk — Passion Pit

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6 Ghost Fields — Murder By Death

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5 Live and Die — The Avett Brothers

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4 We Take Care of Our Own — Bruce Springsteen

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3 Harlem Roulette — Mountain Goats

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2 Bigger Than Love — Ben Gibbard & Aimee Mann

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1 The King of the World — First Aid Kit

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Unsolicited Endorsements XXX

Because sometimes you just want friends to tell you about cool things… the Brew House team offers up its weekly mix of author-supported goodness.

Movie: In Bruges

Colin Farrell has starred in some terrible and forgettable movies. We know his role. He plays the fast-talking punk who’s really not a punk because we KNOW he has a soft side. He endears himself to us because he’s Irish, and women think his body totally rocks. And there is a law, written in permanent ink on a massive steno pad somewhere in Hollywood (I’ve seen it), that posits anyone with a body deemed to totally rock cannot be a punk.

Back in 2008, Farrell actually proved why he deserves the attention and the dollar bills that follow when he starred in a movie most of us never heard about, and if we did, we probably shrugged our shoulders and then forgot. He starred in a movie called “In Bruges.” The name sounds art house. And despite featuring heavy gunfire, it kind of is. The best way to explain the movie is how I explained it in a text to a friend: “It’s a dark comedy/crime thriller set in Bruges. Somehow it worked.”

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Unsolicited Endorsements: VII

Because sometimes you just want friends to tell you about cool things… the Brew House team offers up its weekly mix of author-supported goodness.

This soccer-centric documentary debuted at the SXSW Film Festival in 2010, and it immediately struck a chord. Pelada, which literally translates to “naked” in Portuguese, is the Brazilian word for pickup soccer (or more correctly, futbol).

It’s the work of four young film-makers and stars Luke Boughen and Gwendolyn Oxenham, two former college soccer standouts who travel the world in a constant search for the most basic form of the game — and what it means to each place. This week, more than a year after it surfaced on my radar, I was finally able to cross it off my list. (It’s streaming on Netflix.)

On the surface, this is essentially a love letter to the beautiful game, but the film resonated with me on two deeper levels: It opens a window into life in the unseen (the slums of Buenos Aires; a prison yard in La Paz, Bolivia; the tension-filled streets of Jerusalem), capturing the struggles and monotony of day-to-day life through the lens of futbol.

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