iTunes Choices

7 Jan

Santa was kind enough to leave a couple iTunes cards in my stocking this Christmas. It’s a great gift of music (and possibly TV) that requires confidence and solid decision-making skills. Alas, I am often stricken with indecision and buyers’ “what if’s” so last night was the first time I’ve even shopped around. This is, of course, in sharp contrast with my husband, Ike, who spent both of his $25 cards the first day or so. So, he offered to help me along in my iTunes purchase journey. See, a spender and saver really do work out together. Last night I made 2 solid purchases, and would welcome any assistance on what I should try out next. See below for my fabulous choices!

Choice #1

What:  The Welcome Wagon: Welcome to the Welcome Wagon

Why: Well, if you’ve read my concert post or my top albums post you would have the tiniest inkling that I enjoy the musical styling of Sufjan Stevens. So a band under his Asthmatic Kitty label is a no brainer.  Plus, I’d gotten recommendations to this band from several reputable sources when I said I missed new Sufjan music (of course that was before the release of All Delighted People and The Age of Adz in late 2010). But even with a wealth of new Sufjan material, I was still very interested to try out this husband and wife team, who do a lot of recording in their house when the kids are asleep (such a cute image, huh?). If you want to hear a sampling, click here to download a song from this album, “Sold! To the Nice Rich Man.” Enjoy!

First Impressions: The Welcome Wagon officially makes me happy. Their simple blend of folksy gospel tones and the obvious Sufjan influences add up to a winning album. Plus, with its lively rhythms and orchestral dressings, I think it will take several listens to really appreciate everything that’s going on. Always a good sign.

Choice #2

What: Dirty Projectors: Bitte Orca (Expanded Edition)

Why: I’d already heard this album, but never owned it or really sat down and listened to it in full. Here’s the Pitchfork review if you want to know a bit more.  I was also swayed to buy it because the Expanded Edition (available since 9.2010) offers all the original songs of the albums plus a live version of each for $5.99. Is that a deal or what? I say deal!

First Impressions: During my first few listening sessions, it was easy to tell this band is made of people who know music and like to bend it into something new and unexpected. So far I’m really digging “Stillness Is the Move,” the fourth track that features off beat R & B influences and great female vocals.

Possible Choices:

Neko Case: Middle Cyclone

I’m a big fan of The New Pornographers and I enjoy quirky female lead vocals. So this seems like a good choice. Thoughts? Is this the Neko Case album I should start with?

The Decemberists: Picaresque

I’ve heard of them for a long time, but never tried out an album. From the samples, seems like something that would also make me happy. Also, should I start with this one?

Well, that’s it! Let me know if you think of anything that my ears need to hear. Have a wonderful weekend!

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