A regular Thursday feature of this channel.

Peter Baird


Here to Forever is one of those songs that make existential angst fun. “Oh these days it’s so hard to relax/You gotta hold a gun to my back to make me smile.” And nobody more qualified than Ben Gibbard to sing it. Sonically superb, lyrically ambiguous, Death Cab For Cutie at their best.

The Beths. Stubbornly charting their own course across a treasure map with no dotted line or “X Marks The Spot”. Expert in a Dying Field is a lighthearted trip through that moment when you realize you finally understand a relationship that’s now over. “You can’t stop/Can’t rewind/Love is learned over time.” More delicate than their normal sound, perfectly matched to Beth Stokes' voice.

Not sure why I like Sunset Blvd. I admit to liking Freedom Fry, but this cut has some things I’m indifferent to, like the kick-snare-kick-snare-kick-snare-kick-snare-kick-snare- dance thing that tries to make a real kit sound like a sequencer. But I do like it. Nothing earthshaking, just a pleasant listen.

New Band Alert! Clayton Waller is a Nashville guy who performs as Rock Eupora. Intimacy is a great tune, unexpected chord twists over a lyric that says the quiet part out loud: “More than sympathy/I just want to be loved.” Lots of call-and-answer, and it works well. Love the uncluttered vocal, not so much the detuned guitar chorus.