We Cool?

Full disclosure right up front, this week’s musical addition is geared more towards fans of garage rock, folk punk or power pop music. If you don’t consider yourself a fan I’d still recommend that you check out this artist’s lyrics, because he certainly has a way with words. The artist in question is Jeff Rosenstock. If you believe Ian Cohen of Pitchfork, “Rosenstock is one of the most important figures in modern punk.” I have no reason to distrust Mr. Cohen so I’ll take him at his word.

Before I go any further I would like to point out that I don’t exclusively listen to bearded white male musicians.rosenstock2 It is just coincidence that the first three recommendations happened to be white and male and bearded. With that cleared up let’s talk about his music.

The first song that I listened to was “Nausea” from his We Cool? album. As always I defer to someone who actually knows something about music to describe the song. Shout out to Ricky Frankel of PunkNews.org for the following:

The best way to describe “Nausea” is that it’s an underdog’s anthem. It even has a bit of an anthemic vibe to it between the harsh beat of the drums, the confrontational sound in Jeff’s voice and the soft guitar strums that are played during the chorus.

Ricky later goes on to suggest

For those of you who are just beginning to get into Jeff’s music, I wouldn’t recommend starting off with this album.

Well thanks Ricky that’s information I could have used earlier. I haven’t yet gone back to check out his earlier work, but for me this album stands on its own. I did have to give it a couple of listens to get into it, and even then it’s a ‘right mood’ kinda music.

Before you get to the listening, here’s a sample of his lyrics:

“I’m Serious, I’m Sorry”

I wanted to tell you I know how it feels when/ The people you love just start disappearing/ Ashamed that you took their presence for granted/ But I didn’t want to seem condescending

“Nausea”

I got so tired of discussing my future/ I’ve started avoiding the people I love…I got so tired of discussing my future/ That I walk through my life like I’m the only one.

“The Lows”

Fridays they only pick up the recycling/ So thank god it’s Monday cause I’m useless garbage

Like I said, the man has a way with words. Here’s the video for “Nausea”, complete with confetti vomit, random stabbery, and taco innards. It will all make sense once you watch…correction you will get the references but it still won’t make sense.

If you liked that and you want to find more of Jeff’s music you can get it through Quote/Unquote. Interesting side note, that website is his own creation and it is the first pay-what-you-want record label (long before Radiohead started doing a similar thing).

Thanks again to Matt for another fine recommendation.

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