Horsetracks - spring

IT'S OVER! Eff you, winter, now it's time for lots of rain, difficulty figuring out how to dress for the temperature fluctuations, sneezing, itching/watery eyes, and references to early 2000s Flash-based web toons!PS - If you don't get this Homestar Runner reference, boo.

That means spring! Ok, let's find out what the gang likes to listen to on a lovely spring day!

David: First Day of Spring - Noah and the Whale Great album, very well orchestrated, and some pretty cool harmonies. Also it is called the first day of spring sooooo.... Woman King - Iron and Wine This album fell into my life during the springtime of my senior year in high school. It was the soundtrack to many a mowed lawn, and I especially loved the song Jezebel. This Side - Nickel Creek Nothing says springtime like ridiculously impossible mandolin riffs. Some of the instrumentals on this album beg to be listened to outside on a sunny day

Des: Spring time always makes me think of sunny Sunday afternoons and finally being able to drive with the windows open, so my favorite spring music is my favorite driving music. The new album In The Silence by Icelandic artist Asgeir is perfect for this, and is also my current favorite album. Two of my other driving music standbys: Hail To The Thief - Radiohead Deep Cuts - The Knife

Galen: I don't know where else to find this song... The video's great, the lyrics are awesome. And on our many rainy days, I find it very uplifting to acknowledge the rain and just smile about it. Eponymous - R.E.M. This was one of those early albums where I knew a song or two, listened to the album and realized just because a song isn't on the radio doesn't mean it's not my favorite. Radio Free Europe anyone? Maggot Brain - Funkadelic I knew I was in for something different as soon as I heard George Clinton say, "Mother Earth is pregnant for the third time, for y'all have knocked her up. I have tasted the maggots in the mind of the universe. I was not offended. For I knew I had to rise above it all, or drown in my own shit." The gentle love making of the seemingly endless guitar solo with stunning use of cavernous reverb and delay just hits me like I'm breathing sunshine.

Megan: Lungs - Florence & the Machine Discovered in spring of '09, a time of big changes for me. It recalls feelings of empowerment, excitement, and romance (I was crushing pretty hard on the girl who gave me the record). Musically, it sounds like all those things, minus the romance and add a breakup. The opening harp of "Dog Days Are Over" always bring to mind a spring breeze and the chorus, a raised fist to those who have broken mine and Florence's hearts. Thistled Spring - Horse Feathers This one is quite literal. The opening string arrangement conjures visions of seedlings tentatively, yet triumphantly, breaking through the winter ground and spring motifs are carried through the rest of the record in both instrumentation and lyrics. One of my favorite tracks, "Starving Robbins" literally contains the lyric, "Where's the spring?". This album is effing amazing. Shake Your Money Maker - The Black Crowes This will always be a classic for me. Foot-tappin' Southern blues rock. Turn it up, roll the windows down, enjoy. Fuzzy shuffling guitar riffs, tight snare, gospel backup singers, blues and soul abound. I literally had to put it on as I started to write this, the craving got so strong. And think about it, despite the fact that it was released in 1990, you still hear "Hard to Handle" once a week. (Yes, it's a cover, but did you know it before this? Don't be a troll).

Ryann: The Goat Rodeo Sessions - Yo-Yo Ma, Stuart Duncan, Edgar Meyer and Chris Thile Stuart Duncan is one of my top five favorite fiddle players. When spring begins, there is a variety of new flowers and greenery, a big fun variety of colors, and this album is a bit like that. It has a new sound because it is a collection of a variety of different genres and styles of playing. Elko - RAILROAD EARTH They're from my home state of NJ and it's an album I love listening to on long drives in nice weather with the windows rolled down. The Bluegrass Sessions - Bella Fleck It's a great fusion of old and new bluegrass sounds. Some of the instrumentals are slow and thoughtful. It's another album I bust out when the weather is warm.

Now we want to hear from you!

What's YOUR favorite springtime music?

Tell us on Facebook or Tweet us @blackhorsemotel #horsetracks with your answers to Horse Tracks questions or send us your own questions!


Horse Tracks: Snow Day

We here at BHM hope that all you Northeastern snow bunnies have burrowed your way back to the surface and are now enjoying the brown, slushy fruits of the dreaded POLAR VORTEX, AAAAAAHHHHHHH!And if you don't live in a place that's had one of the worst winters in recent memory, congratulations! You win and we hate you a little.

Feeling the full force of Mother Nature's snow diarrhea had me wondering what everyone is listening to while trapped in their homes. So, I asked the group:

"Name 3 albums or songs that are winter or snow day go-tos and tell me why"

Dave: Johnny Flynn - Sweet William EP Sounds like a snowy day. The track "Drum" has a slow, trudging beat that sounds like a march through brown Philly snow. Bon Iver - Blood Bank EP Just good music for any day in the winter time. Bon Iver sings about the snow in Wisconsin, no matter what month we are in. Sufjan Stevens - Seven Swans A slow, folky, banjo-y album that has a cold metallic ring to it, the type of music that lends itself to reading and watching the snow fall outside of your window.

Galen: Jeremy Messersmith - The Alcatraz Kid First caught my attention with the heartbreaking "Beautiful Children". However, the song "Snow Day" really captures the student's and teacher's longings for a day away from work. Tom Waits - Real Gone I spent a year living in Hudson, NY, working an hour away in Kingston. Driving those dark snow covered roads, I listened to this album both ways for about three months. There's something about the off-kilter sound of the guitars provided by Marc Ribot, along with Tom's creeptacular beat boxing that's been permanently attached to snow and winter roads. Neil Young - Freedom I fell in love with Neil Young in my childhood, and for me, the Freedom album is pretty much the pinnacle of my love affair with overdriven guitar into tweed amps. I got that album the same Christmas my brother got a Kinex Big Ball Factory. We put that weird contraption together over the course of several days, listening to that album on repeat. Just listening to that album now makes my fingers throb with remembered pain. It was a good Christmas.

Des: Tchaikovsky - Nutracker Suite I don't think I need to explain why. Simon and Garfunkel - The Sound of Silence The peaceful, quieting effect that falling snow brings always makes me think of this song. Zoe Keating - One Cello x 16: Natoma It seems like every time I see her live, it's in the winter and this album always brings me back.

Meg: Bon Iver - For Emma, Forever Ago We all know Justin Vernon locked himself in a Wisconsin cabin for months and recorded this album. It just sounds like winter - cold, isolation, reflection, with a few dashes of depression. You can almost hear the snow piling up on the windows, cutting him off from the rest of the world. Tegan and Sara - Sainthood Released in the fall of '09, I rocked this album HARD through what turned out to be quite a self-revelatory winter. It always takes me back there. Horse Feathers - House with No Home Sort of the opposite vibe of Bon Iver's record. Horse Feathers' second album, and the first for me, conjures the cozy side of winter. Musicians siting together, playing heartfelt songs in a tucked away cabin by a crackling fire. Probably drinking hot toddies and wearing giant sweaters.

Now we want to hear from you!

What's YOUR favorite snow day music?

Tell us on Facebook or Tweet us @blackhorsemotel #horsetracks with your answers to Horse Tracks questions or send us your own questions!


Horse Tracks: 2013 Round-up

We here at BHM hope that you are all having a wonderful holiday season and are currently recovering from your cookie and booze coma in a pile of shredded wrapping paper. Now I know that in the midst of all the holiday hub-bub, there has been a burning question in the back of your mind - “What are Black Horse Motel's top 3 albums from 2013?”

Well, since you were good all year, here you go:

Des: Sigur Rós - Kviekur Imogen Heap - Sparks The National - Trouble Will Find Me

Galen: Daft Punk - Random Access Memories Songs: Ohia - Magnolia Electric Company 10 year anniversary re-release Kacey Musgraves - Same Trailer Different Park

Dave: Johnny Flynn - Country Mile Frightened Rabbit - Pedestrian Verse The National - Trouble Will Find Me

Megan: Tegan and Sara - Heartthrob The National - Trouble Will Find Me CHVRCHES - The Bones of What You Believe

(Looks like The National wins Black Horse Motel) The National - Trouble Will Find Me

Now we want to hear from you!

What are YOUR top 2013 albums?

Tell us on Facebook or Tweet us @blackhorsemotel #horsetracks with your answers to Horse Tracks questions or send us your own questions!

New Feature: Horse Tracks

I'm super excited to premier a new column on the site: Horse Tracks!In each installment, I will pose a musical taste-related question to the group and post their answers. There are only two rules: 1. Answer within the confines of the question and 2. Be honest!

I'm always interested in what my favorite and fellow artists listen to and so I thought I'd give you a behind the scenes peek at what's inside BHM's earholes. Indeed, I'm often really surprised to find that the music you like does not always equal the music you make.

This week's question: "What was the last full album you listened to?"

Megan - Fleetwood Mac, Fleetwood Mac (1975) Galen - Zox, The Wait Desiree - Bon Iver, Bon Iver David - Johnny Flynn, Country Mile

Hey! This could be a fun way to get to know each other!

What was the last full album YOU listened to?

Tell us on Facebook or Tweet us @blackhorsemotel #horsetracks with your answers to Horse Tracks questions or send us your own questions!

Next Horse Tracks will be a 2013 roundup!


Horse Tracks