Spotify playlist: Autumn 2013
Music for an autumn spent reading, watching the rain and going to gigs
The List’s team of music writers pick the best tracks to play as the leaves turn. Compiled by: Jo Bell, Niki Boyle, Harris Brine, Jack Taylor, Alexandra Embiricos, Laura Ennor, Claire Sawers, Stewart Smith and Matt Ward
Tim Hecker & Daniel Lopatin - ‘Grey Geisha’
A visit from the East in the form of sweeping instrumental electronic music. Hecker teams up with the man behind Oneohtrix Point Never to create a tactile and ethereal mix of shifting static and blurry melody.
Tim Hecker, Old Fruitmarket, Glasgow, Fri 20 Sep.
‘Reach for the Dead’ - Boards of Canada
The long-awaited new album, Tomorrow’s Harvest, didn’t disappoint. Filled with the Edinburgh boys’ trademark soundscapes, it’s an easy yet stimulating listen. Useful for those nights in, when you’re seriously hitting the books.
‘Ekki Múkk’ - Sigur Rós
The sprawling Icelandic chieftains’ latest album, Kveikur, is the sound of elegant introspection. Each track is accompanied by a short film known as the Valtari Film Experiment.
Usher Hall, Edinburgh, Mon 18 Nov.
‘Higgs Boson Blues’ - Nick Cave
Students! Looking for a way to combine physics revision with listening to your favourite gaunt 50-year-old gothic monkey man? Look no more!
Barrowland, Glasgow, Thu 31 Oct; Usher Hall, Edinburgh, Fri 1 Nov.
‘Goodbye Pork Pie Hat’ - Charles Mingus
Few things are more welcoming on an autumn morning than the first notes of this, from Mingus’ 1959 record Mingus Ah Um. The title is a reference to saxophonist Lester Young, who died a few months earlier from the effects of alcohol.
‘No Name#5’ - Elliott Smith
A typically grim yet beautiful insight into Smith’s delicate psyche, exploring his desire to distance himself from unwanted influences. Very much a solitary affair, one to soundtrack the headiest of comedowns from the summer.
‘So What’ - Miles Davis
As if unfazed by the transition into the autumn months, Miles Davis almost welcomes it with a fanfare of indifference. A song that’s a reminder of the hustle and bustle of NYC while instilling a sense of calm that could be found in a Brooklyn coffee shop.
‘Only Friend’ - The Temperance Movement
Jangly blues rock from the Glasgow-via-London band, who release their self-titled debut album in September. Òran Mór, Glasgow, Wed 18 Sep; Liquid Room, Edinburgh, Thu 21 Nov.
‘The Ballad of Roy Batty’ - Grumbling Fur
Grumbling Fur’s pagan synth-pop sounds like Depeche Mode reimagined by psychedelic ex-choirboys. This soaring elegy reworks Rutger Hauer’s famous speech from Blade Runner: ‘I’ve seen things that you people would not believe.’
Eastern Promise, Glasgow, Sat 5 Oct.
‘Our Way to Fall’ - Yo La Tengo
Hushed tones and Ira Kaplan’s soft vocals uncover hidden depths on each song, with backing instruments ranging from the vibraphone to the drum machine. For seconds, treat yourself to their seasonal ‘Autumn Sweater’.
‘Perth’ (Bon Iver) vs ‘Ready for the Floor’ (Hot Chip) - Daughter
Hot Chip’s floor filler and the opener from Justin Vernon’s second album are both based on the Batman’s Joker (the former on Jack Nicholson, the latter Heath Ledger). Poignant autumnal vibes are applied by the gossamer vocals of Elena Tonra.
Daughter, Old Fruitmarket, Glasgow, Sun 20 Oct.
‘Your Drums, Your Love’ - AlunaGeorge
The electronic duo from London (Aluna Francis and George Reid) showcase their mishmash of influences in forward-thinking future-pop, melding inspiration from leftfield artists with a classic pop ethos to make something catchy and innovative.
‘LUNGR’ - True Widow
Call them ‘stonegaze’ or whatever you will, the melodic, heavy textures of this Texan three-piece take inspiration from the likes of Washington giants, Earth: think wet soil and falling leaves.
‘Tinseltown In The Rain’ - The Blue Nile
What better introduction to Glasgow than the greatest song ever written about the city? Paul Buchanan’s image of lovers caught up in the rhythm of the city has universal appeal, but it’s the small details – the ‘red car in the fountain’, the blur of city lights in the rain – which perfectly evoke Glasgow’s drizzly magic.
‘So Long, Marianne’ - Leonard Cohen
Past melancholy and future joy are two things expertly woven into one of Mr Cohen’s classics, something for all of us to contemplate with the change of seasons.
‘My God is the Sun’ - Queens of the Stone Age
Sure to be an autumn highlight when they play live in Glasgow, this song is classic QOTSA, busting out of the starting gates and careering around your speakers like those ‘godless heathens who waltz on the sky’.
The Hydro, Glasgow, Sat 16 Nov.
‘Your Life Your Call’ - Junip
José González’ soft psych-rock band, Junip, play a manifesto on weak-willed independence. Uplifting in a fittingly downbeat fashion.
O2 ABC2, Glasgow, Sun 15 Sep, part of No Mean City festival.
‘Fall In Love’ – BadBadNotGood
The Canadian jazz drop-outs turned fusion superstars are on the right track, combining contemporary electronic music with old-school jazz technique and hip hop. Look out for their new album coming soon.