My Song Recommendations

A song recommendation every day (be warned, they will probably all be weird folky songs that no one will have heard of or want to bother with.) Hozier, Sara Bareilles, Hudson Taylor, Passenger, Ben Howard, Bear's Den, Vance Joy will all probably be featured quite heavily.

Basically this is just my response to how much I love certain songs and writers at the moment and how I listen to something and get that "weird evangelical zeal, and become convinced that the shattered world will never be put back together unless and until all living humans [hear it]".

Enjoy!

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28. Days 27, 28, 29 and 30 - Whispers II

 

Whispers II - short film by Passenger

So... I'm doing it a little differently today. I'm very sorry that this movella has been a little bit rejected recently, I've been very busy. Today's addition is actually a multi-song 'short film' which consists of the (in my opinion) best bits of Passengers most recent album 'Whispers II'. This also conveniently enables me to recommend you all these beautiful songs without irritating you too much with insanely regular Passenger recommendations. PLEASE, PLEASE, PLEASE buy the full album (no, I have not been hired by him to promote his work, I simply admire him greatly) as  ONE HUNDRED PERCENT of the profit goes to malnourished children via UNICEF.

"i am releasing this album independently on my own label (black crow records) and there are no other record labels involved in the marketing and distribution . the upside of this is that it enables us to give as much money to UNICEF as possible . the downside is that at the moment all physical copies have to be shipped from the uk which unfortunately means there is a postage and packaging cost involved . sorry to those of you who have to pay a little more but be assured that there is good reason for it :-)

the video below is in my opinion some of my friend bryan dos reis’s best work (and that is saying something !) its a short film which includes the four video’s that we have already released plus the fifth and final one and links them all together with more footage from my european tour and some music from some of my fellow busking buddies that we met along the way . I’m so lucky to have worked with bryan on this and i really hope you enjoy it .

as i mentioned earlier , there is absolutely no money being spent on marketing . none of these songs are ever likely to get on the radio and chances are it won’t get picked up by the press in a big way . this entire project is based on word of mouth so please , if you can , share the video’s , the music and the message with as many people as possible . even if you can’t afford to buy a copy of the album - the sharing of it is just as vital .

i’m really proud of this record - both musically and also the cause that its contributing to . i want to thank all of you for getting behind it in such an amazing way and i really do hope that you enjoy listening to it . i’m so so lucky to have such generous and genuine people supporting me and what i do ."

 

1. Travelling alone:

Australian man, Scandinavian tan,
Kicking stones round a square.
Sat for a while and carved out a smile,
As if someone would care.

Said I’m a long way from the Gold Coast.
Furthest I've ever known,
Oh and this just ain’t my home.
It was my wife's idea, but she’s no longer here.
She left me travelling alone.

I never heard silence ring out like a bell.
I never heard silence like last night in my expensive hotel.
Well, I’m loving a shadow, I’m trying to catch the rain.
But I never heard silence 'til I heard it today.

She walked out of the hotel,
I could still smell the smoke of the burning heart left inside.
She said men are all assholes
And life’s a bad joke.
She laughed and started to cry.

See, ten years with this man,
And a life time of plans,
Oh, and I loved him to his bones.
Now I've lines on my skin
And he's traded me in.
He left me travelling alone.

Well, I never felt silence hit me like a train.
I never felt silence like blood coursed through my veins.
Well, I’m loving a shadow, and I’m trying to catch the rain.
I never heard silence 'til I heard it today.
I never felt silence 'til I felt it today.

 

I love this song because it is possibly the saddest song in existence but also perfectly captures the way that I feel catching trains on my own. The threading together of these two desperately lonely lives into one sensation of loneliness is heart-breaking.

 

2. David:

Well I met him outside a hostel door
He said I'll tell you mine if you tell me yours
I know you think it's shifty for a man in his fifties
To be sleeping in a hostel dorm
But I used to be a welder by trade
Used to work by the water where the ships get made
But no ship yard will take me now
My hands are too shaky now
And I've spend all my money before I get paid

And I said: David, don't you think it's strange
While you were sleeping
How the world went and changed
Looking in your eyes, yeah I think you know
That David, we lost you, lost you a long time ago

He leans his head against the hostel wall
Said I have an ex-wife that doesn't hear me
And a kid that doesn't call
And every month I'm caught short
With my fucking child support
And the court says that I'm reckless and irresponsible
Cause it was never part of the plan
To be a middle aged man
To be sat outside a hostel, shaking strangers hands
But I've drunk away my wealth
I'm a picture of bad health
And I'm a shadow of a shadow of a former self

And I said: David, don't you think it's strange
While you were walking and how the world went and changed
I hear it in your voice
I think you know
That David we lost you, lost you a long time ago

Oh well David, don't you think it's strange
For years you're in your dark room
How the world went and changed
Looking in your eyes
Yeah I think you know
That David, we lost you
Lost you a long time ago

 

This song was inspired by a man Mike (Passenger) met at a hostel in Scotland and it proves his masterful talent as a story-teller and a sponge of human emotion.

 

3. Fear of Fear:

Fill my lungs full of smoke,
Fill my belly full of beer,
Fill my nights with bad jokes,
Told by folk full of fear,
Fill my eyes with a stinging,
Fill my time with wishing she was here,

Fill my wide with a narrow,
Fill my safe full of danger,
Fill my bed full of shadows,
Fill my dreams full of strangers,
Fill my ears with a ringing,
Fill my heart with a fear of fear,

Well fill my cup half empty cos its never been half full,
Fill me up paint me over like a damp patch on the wall,
Leave me lying on my stomach on your neighbour’s bath room floor,
I’m only here until tomorrow any way,
I’m burning up like a fever that rages in the night,
Spark me up I’m a fire work I’ll burst in to light,
Cos its better to burn out then to fade out of sight,
That’s what someone told me any way,

So fill my lungs full of smoke,
Fill my belly full of beer,
Fill my nose full of cocaine,
Fill my eyes full of tears,
Fill my short with a longing,
Fill my time with wishing I wasn’t here,

Oh fill my past with regret,
Wrap my present in brown paper,
Fill my future with promises that promise to come later,
Fill my heart with a stinging,
Fill my heart with a fear of fear.

 

This is possibly his simplest song ever in terms of structure but it is equally complex in its portrayal of human frailty. If you have been reading my diary you may have noticed that I make quite a lot of references to Passenger's work, particularly this album because it really does ring true with me at the moment. Some of these lines are so poetically clever despite the very repetitive template they follow.

 

4. Catch in the Dark:

Well she calls me up when she’s broken,
Says to leave my front door open,
I come home to find her smoking,
With her eyes all fragile and thin,
She’s always been hopeless at hoping,
Always coped badly with coping,
And I never know when she’s joking,
She never lets anyone in,

I know I’m a fool to let her run away with my heart,
And she’ll never tire of these games,
Loving her is like playing catch in the dark,
I’m a tear drop in an ocean of flames,

And we’ll drink too much for a Wednesday,
She’ll ask me why none of her men stay,
I tell her just what her friends say,
It never goes down too well,
And she’ll stay hear til late in the evening,
But she’s always arriving or leaving,
Never decides to believe in,
The people who know her so well,

I know I’m a fool to let her run away with my heart,
And she’ll never tire of these games,
Loving her is like playing catch in the dark,
I’m a tear drop in an ocean of flames,

She says if we’re single at 40,
We’ll get married and move to the country,
But I know she’ll never want me,

Then its five fifteen in the morning,
I reach for her whilst I’m yawning,
She leaves me with no warning.

 

The song that contests 'Travelling Alone' in the saddest song ever category!  I particularly appreciate the way this song ends like the relationship/encounter; literally "with no warning". The first few times I heard this song it caught me out and I half thought that something had been cut off the recording but I soon realised that it was unsatisfying (musically) in order to make it entirely satisfying in terms of the story.

 

5. Nothing's Changed:

Well the walls are turning yellow like a smokers tooth,
Cold as a call girls smile in a phone booth,
Baby pigeon starving on the side of the roof,
Nothing’s changed,

Sometimes words don’t say enough,
Sometimes silence says too much,
Too close for comfort but too far too touch,
Nothing’s changed,

Sun still shiny in the play ground,
Water still running like a grey hound,
My heads still drumming when I lay down,
Nothing strange,
We still rattle round the same town,
Like two little stones in a coke can,
Like two lost kids at a fairground,
Nothing’s changed,

Car alarms ringing in the dead of the night,
Drunk man singing in the morning light,
Too brave to fall but to scared to fight,
Nothing’s changed,

Sun still shining in the play ground,
Water still running like a greyhound,
My heads still drumming when I lay down,
Nothing strange,
We’re just dancers waiting in the wings,
Ain’t no answers blowing in the wind,
Ain’t no saint no sin,
And nothings changed.

 

The descriptions in this are stunning; I find the way he writes about emotion such an inspiration for my own writing as he blends the mundane and the poetic to perfection.

 

Well... I hope you enjoyed our little Passenger marathon as much as I have :) Please let me know if you have any favourites, I would happily talk about this guy all morning!

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