Sam Recommends: “Say Hello to the Angels” by Interpol

Last night, I saw Interpol play “Turn on the Bright Lights” in its entirety as part of their 15th anniversary tour for the album. It was an amazing show, even though the mere fact of its existence made me feel old as hell.

My best friend and I were huge Interpol fans in high school. Hearing this iconic (at least in our own lives) album played live took us back in time, and it felt so good to jam out to those songs together.

In commemoration of the wonderful night, today’s song recommendation is “Say Hello to the Angels.”

Sam Recommends: “Flyin’ High” by Delicate Steve

I first encountered Delicate Steve in 2014, when they opened for Tame Impala (who will surely appear on this blog at some point in the future.)

It was love at first listen. I’m not a huge fan of instrumental music, but while Delicate Steve’s entire catalogue is (very nearly) free of vocals & lyrics, it never sounded like instrumental music to me.

To me, that lead guitar (I’m not a musician, so I don’t know if that terminology is correct) acts as the vocalist & storyteller in Delicate Steve’s songs, and it conveys just as much emotion as any human voice ever has.

In “Flyin’ High,” that voice is telling a story about the resilience of the human spirit. It expresses a slow but steady (and ultimately euphoric) realization that things are going to be okay, that there is beauty and joy to be found in the world, and that it’s worth getting excited about.

That’s what I hear, anyway.

Sam Recommends: “Them Changes” by Thundercat

Holy funk, this song is so good. I dare you to listen just once. You can’t. Unless you’re a masochist. In which case, do your thing. 

In the mood for a 3-for-1? Okay, sure.

So, if you’re like me, what probably first drew you into “Them Changes” is that opening drum beat, right? You might recognize it as a sample from Ice Cube’s “It Was a Good Day,” which is another all time favorite jam.

But, if you were raised listening to oldies, you probably know that Ice Cube actually borrowed it too, sampling The Isley Brother’s “Footsteps in the Dark.”

Sam Recommends: “Evil Woman” by Black Sabbath

This is definitely a change of pace from my previous two recommendations.

Let me set the scene for you:

It was the summer of 2010. I had just been dumped. And then a slew of other bad happenings followed. Listening to this song (along with “Warning”) on repeat was incredibly cathartic.

Thanks, Ozzy. Love you always.