Somehow September has come and nearly gone, sneaking in and trying to find its way back out without ever alerting anyone to its presence. As the month draws to its inevitable close in a little over a week, we must bow our heads, a shed a tear or two for the untimely, and definitive death of the summer. Yes, although August marked the figurative demise of America’s (unofficial) favorite season, September drives the literal nail in the coffin, replacing sun-bleach drives and sweaty afternoons with cool breezes and the ever-increasing necessity to throw on some outerwear before leaving the confines of your home. There are many words to describe this subtle, but sudden, season shift; words like sudden, shifting, sad, unfortunate, or even terrible. The word that most represents the end of September, and the subsequent change from summer to fall, is awkward. Yes, as the seasons change, so to does the style of music that best fits that quarter of the year and September tends to create sort of a tough transitional patch of weeks for avid music fans. Luckily, this month has not skimped on its release of perfect fall transition albums. Here are just of few of the new releases that will, in a five-step musical program, help you to go from admitting the summer is over to accepting and dealing with the oncoming fall.
The first step in any successful healing program is simply admitted that the summer is over. In the spirit of the first step, I’ll be the first to admit that this first album isn’t going to do much to transition, but it is an unequivocally fun listen that will help with the overall process.
Paper Route – The Peace of Wild Things
Taking their psychedelic circus vibe of albums passed and completely throwing it in the gutter to rot, Paper Route have taken a bare bones revivalist approach to their new album. In doing so, they’ve created an electronically charged, beat-thumping pop album that will have you singing along so hard you’ll forget all about the gently rolling breezes approaching. The heavy presence of synth and electronic claps, beats, and squeals never overwhelms, serving as background complimentary instrumentation rather than a driving force. Despite the immensely fun overtones of this album it still has a bit of an end of the day, or nighttime driving vibe that will jump-start the process from fist-pumping summer jams to chill, sleepy fall time.
Listen to “The Peace of Wild Things”
Buy “The Peace of Wild Things”
Imagine Dragons – Night Visions
If you’re still reluctantly clinging to summer with every fiber of your being, maybe transitioning from the power pop of Paper Route to the anthemic pop of Imagine Dragons will help ease your aching heart. Presenting an album filled with electronic backing thumps and light synth scattered throughout, the band provides and album full of sing-a-long tracks that lean more towards the foot tapping than the fist pumping. After quietly releasing an assortment of EP’s the past few years, the band appeared almost overnight with their chart-topping debut almost certainly as a result of their stirring single “It’s Time” which is included on the “Perks of Being a Wallflower” soundtrack as well as heavily utilized at the recent iPhone 5 announcement. If all of this is starting to really cramp your indie style, then I definitely shouldn’t mention that the song was also covered on the season 4 premiere of Glee. No, I’ll glaze over that and instead simply tell you that Night Visions is a yet another album that will slowly but surely seduce you into an autumnal spirit.
Listen to “Night Visions”
Buy “Night Visions”
Lets just have a quick recap. We’ve admitted that summer is over, and I’ve admitted that these first two albums won’t really get you into the full-blown fall spirit. Instead they are meant to transition from the presumably pop punk, or loud music heavy summer months to a slightly less loud but still upbeat mid September. The purpose of this first portion was to merely introduce the idea of change, a slow but reserved shift. This is only the first of two installments meant to ease in slowly so as not to shock or upset with a sudden jump to chillaxed autumn records. This portion introduced the concept, and two albums that will allow you to accept the idea of change. The second installment, coming next week, will deal with the actual and full change. Be Ready.