Monday, July 7, 2014

The Music Zone III

It's been far too long since I posted some great music. Here is more of my favorites that can be found on the Internet in a variety of locations!


"First Class" - Henry Jackman
This song is the title track from X-Men: First Class. No, not the one that just came out - the one that came out in 2011. I listen to a lot of Spotify, and when I wanted to start a radio channel based on the music of Star Wars, this was one of the pieces that came up, and I love it.

The reason I love it: The strings throughout the piece generate a sense of tension, accentuated by the brass entrances, and finally the rockin' percussion.



"Where No One Goes" - Jonsi
Another song from a movie soundtrack - this one runs during the credits of How to Train Your Dragon 2, which just so happens to be a really good movie. Jonsi was also the artist who did the closing credits of the original How to Train Your Dragon ("Sticks & Stone"), and the score for We Bought a Zoo. He is part of the Icelandic band Sigur Ros.

The reason I like it: The song from the first movie is great; however, this song takes the best music themes of the How To Train Your Dragon movies and incorporates it into the song. FYI: the score for the movies was done by John Powell, and you really should get it.




"She Tows the Line" - Crooked Fingers
I heard this song thanks to the TV show Chuck. That show had so much great music featured in it, and you can find lots of websites devoted to a very nice playlist of the best songs from Chuck. This is one of them!

The reason I like it: This music came during one of the saddest turning-point moments of Chuck, and it always reminds me of that. 



"Ways to Go" - Grouplove
This music video is one of the oddest videos out there. I heard this song on radio station Channel 93.3 here in Denver, which features some great music that other alternative stations don't play. (I'm looking at you, 102.1 in Milwaukee, home of All Things Foo Fighters.)

The reason I like it: The song starts out with keyboard and bass, and sounds pretty hipster. My favorite part is 1:12, when the song finally kicks into high gear.



"The Cello Song" - Steven Sharp Nelson
Many music types may be familiar with this song as "Cello Suite No. 1 in G Major BWV1007" by Johann Sebastian Bach. Many normal people would call that suite's prelude "The Cello Song." So when Steven Sharp Nelson arranged this version, that title was very fitting. This version gives the song a little bit of a kick. (I should probably mention that Nelson is a member of The Piano Guys, a very popular music group.)

The reason I like it: The original is beautiful (I'll also include it below, performed by Yo-Yo Ma), and this one uses the melody and adds a beat. Some people might claim that's not necessary - that Bach's original work is fine just the way it is. I say, who cares? 




"Classic" - MKTO
My little brother just got married last month, and while my older brother, little sister, and I were in the car, this song came on. My sister really loves this song, and we all started dancing in the car. She also requested this song during the wedding reception, which the DJs graciously played. It's a good song to call "The Song of the Summer," because it's incredibly cheesy, but incredibly catchy.

The reason I like it: I believe the correct lyrics are, "Baby you're class and baby you're sick". Get it? Classic? Yea...

The real reason I like it: The piano riff that comes in at 0:51. I also appreciate the fact that the song tries to promote being yourself ("classic") and not someone else ("plastic").



"Love Like a Sunset" - Phoenix
This song has two parts. The first part is very digital, and grows. The mood changes with the changes in the instruments, until finally it finally emerges as a lyrical song at 5:40. 

The reason I like it: Phoenix is a great band, and is willing to take risks in their music. This piece is a strange journey, and it's got me on board.



"Ocean Journey" - Matthew C. Shuman
I got this piece from The Weather Channel. That's right - The Weather Channel. Before it "revamped" in November 2013, the Local on the 8s portion of the channel was highlighted by some great tunes. Initially it was jazz, and then it grew to some pop music (especially in the morning) and lighter instrumental fare. This is one of the great pieces that was played in the evening. 

The reason I like it: It is strictly piano - no frills. It's also an original tune - so many piano pieces nowadays are just arrangements of other pieces. I like this one. Bonus: this piece is performed by Matthew Shuman himself!



"Rockstar" - A Great Big World
Another recommendation by my sister during wedding weekend. This one reminds me of the songs I used to listen to in high school and college - songs by Something Corporate, The Fray, Snow Patrol, and Ben Folds. If that's your cup of tea, this song will fit right in. I have yet to listen to the rest of the album - hopefully it's all like this.

The reason I like it: Piano. Pianopianopiano. The chords that structure the verses are so simple, but have great depth. 



"The Impossible Planet" - Murray Gold
This one is taken from the Series 1&2 soundtrack of Doctor Who, my favorite TV show of all time. In less than two months (?!?!?!) the new series will premier featuring Peter Capaldi as the Doctor, and I am beyond excited. This song is not the normal thumping, rollicking Murray Gold music that I'm used to hearing on Doctor Who. Instead, the music (taken from the episode title of the same name) is very melancholy, foreboding, and moody - especially after the first 10 seconds (which I cut out of my mp3 recording). It would have fit perfectly for an episode of Firefly.

The reason I like it: When I go on Doctor Who websites and they discuss their favorite pieces of music from the show, there are so many common answers - "I Am the Doctor," "Vale Decem," the theme song, etc. This one is a wild card, but it's so good



So there's another trip into The Music Zone! With three Zones now in the Blurb, you know the kind of music I enjoy. Do you have any suggestions? Comment below, and recommend this Blurb to all your friends!


Welcome to the Blurb! I write about everything from sports to movies to music to television and more. My favorite things to type about are the Detroit Tigers, Star Wars, Doctor Who, Disney, and music! If you like what you read, "like" my page at Facebook.com/blurbmusings!

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