I’m back with my third installment of my monthly playlists! This playlist is a bit different from the last two; it’s a pure representation of what I’ve been listening to this past month. The music is definitely more ‘popular’ and there’s not as much variety as the past two. Most of the songs are either non-English music or electronica music. My hope, however, is that it’s still a great playlist to discover music because much of this typically isn’t popular back in the US. Even if you can’t understand the non-English ones, I think they’re still worth a listen…who knows, you might find them extremely catchy!
In addition, I’m thinking of doing a mid-month playlist (if I have time) that’s more geared towards some music exploration and a wider variety of music.
The first part of the playlist explores a lot of the Spanish music that I’ve heard and liked so far here in Madrid. We start our listening adventure with Cómo Te Atrevas (1), by Columbia folk-pop band Morat. It’s a bit of a crude comparison but the song reminds me of a Latin version of Mumford & Sons. I might have a bit of a bias towards this song because it’s one of the first Spanish language songs I understood the first time I heard it, but I definitely think it’s quite catchy. The next song, Sofia (2), is a Latin-pop song by Spanish singer Álvaro Soler, who has rose to moderate fame in the past year. Lola, one of my Spanish friends who introduced me to this song, told me this was a major hit this past summer here in Madrid.
The next three songs, Carnaval (3) by Maluma, DUELE EL CORAZON (4) by Enrique Iglesias, and Hasta el Amanecer (5) by Nicky Jam, are all typical songs you hear here in Spain on the radio and in the clubs to dance to. El Mismo Sol (6) is another hit by previously-mentioned Álvaro Soler, with Jennifer Lopez singing alongside him.
We next move to two French songs that I discovered this past weekend through some Belgian friends while in London. Face à la mer (7) is a song by singer Calogero with French rapper Passi providing the verses. I was told by my friends that Calogero is an “old” singer and this song is over 10 years old, but I still loved the contrast of the intensely-rapped verses and the ballad-invoking chorus vocals. The other French song, À l’heure où je me couche (8), is a song by the French rap duo Casseurs Flowters. The duo is composed of two famous rappers, Orelsan and Gringe. According to Wikipedia Orelsan is the more famous of the two and has done a lot of solo music as well, so that’s possibly something for me to explore in the future, as this is the only music I know of them so far. However, I like this song a lot (even though I don’t understand a word) as it’s a laidback, chill rap song.
With the next song we move back into the English language and into two random songs. The first, Stay the Night (9) is a song from the famous and sometimes controversial English singer James Blunt. I heard this song while in London last weekend and have been listening to it a lot since then. And while Blunt is a very polarizing figure, if you’re ever bored take a look at his personal twitter account; he’s notorious for his hilarious comebacks and his trolling of various twitter users (google his best tweets, but be warned, his account may be seen as offensive to some).
I digress back to music, however! The next song, Closer (10), is a cover of the extremely popular Chainsmokers song that many of you most likely know. This particular version, done by Walk Off the Earth, takes their signature acoustic approach, and even adds some hilarity using kazoos a couple times in the middle. (I’m not joking about the kazoos, look at the music video.)
The playlist finishes out with five different electronic/house/dance/tropical songs. (Don’t get me started on the intricacies of trying to label electronic music, I could write an hour long blog post on the subject, which is essentially semantics 75% of the time). The first song by German DJ Zedd, Daisy (11), has been my most listened-to song in the past couple days. I first discovered this track from a close friend who made me a playlist when I left America, and recently I fell in love with it. The next two, The Ocean (12), and Love On Me (13) are what you expect from this genre of music; solid, catchy music with powerful vocals, pounding drums, and melodic synths that’s aimed to get lots of radio play.
Electrify (14) by Oliver is the most unique and original of these five songs, in my personal opinion, and my favorite. Unlike most DJs in the current scene, Oliver hasn’t decided to follow current trends but rather take inspiration from the 70s and 80s and create funky, synth-heavy dance tracks. Their own description, straight from their Facebook page, says:
They took their shared ’80s baby tastes – relentless
ly groovy R&B, boombox worthy hip-hop, soaring electropop hooks – and mashed them together in remixes for everyone from Chromeo and Foster The People to Breakbot and techno godfather Juan Atkins.
If you only listened to one song on this playlist I would highly recommend this one!
The last song is a remix of Dancing On My Own (15) that was created by Dutch DJ Tiësto. The original song was written and sung by Robyn in 2010, but was recently revived when Britain’s Got Talent contestant Calum Scott released his own version that arguably eclipsed the original and got remixed. Calum Scott gives me vibes similar to other piano ballad-based singers like James Arthur, Sam Smith, and John Newman.
Thanks for taking the time to check out this month’s playlist! Keep an eye out for some bonus music getting released in another couple weeks and as always, feel free to comment or contact me with any questions or feedback!