What I’ve Been Listening To (1.24.21)

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The music I listened to the most from January 17-23, based on song plays per album

Welcome to my weekly column “What I’ve Been Listening To,” where I publish a post every Sunday with my 5×5 collage of most-listened releases (which is sourced by my Last.fm account and made into a collage via this site). I do not intend these to be lengthy write-ups, but I like to include notes on my listening habits, discoveries, etc.

  • Today’s my 29th birthday! I released my first album Unfall on my 28th birthday exactly, and I decided to keep up the pattern by releasing my second album on the Friday nearest my birthday. So there it is in the second spot, and it’s really cool to finally see it here.
  • It’s interesting to see how few of this weekend’s new releases didn’t make it into my top 25, but so many notable releases this weekend were EPs, (like Phil Joel or Camp Trash), such that they didn’t have enough tracks to get play counts higher than 7.
  • My girlfriend has started making these 5x5s too, and she had the hilariously awesome idea of trying to make one of her weekly 5x5s include her favorite 25 albums. To make this easier, she made a playlist that contains all her favorite albums, and I spent quite a bit of time this week jamming to that playlist, as well. So while it wouldn’t be abnormal for artists such as Wolves at the Gate, Emery, or Underoath to appear in my listening habits, this playlist is specifically why they’re here this week.
  • The Academy Is… crafted three near-perfect emo-pop albums before calling it quits unfortunately early into their career. I’ve learned a lot about good songwriting from those albums, and I love returning to them.
  • The dominating artist on this list is obviously Mew, the Danish prog-pop act that was known as the very first “stadium indie band.” I’ve loved their music for most of my adult life, and going through their discography this week was a blast. All five of their main albums (not counting two early independent releases) earn a strong four-star rating and up from me. The big discovery this week is that, while I’ve longed considered Frengers to be the band’s bonafide five-star classic, it’s actually not my favorite record anymore. That title (alongside a newly christened five-star rating) goes to Visuals, the album that you’ll see in the top spot, no competition, with 40 plays (as in, I listened to the album three times on Friday and revisited a few tracks yesterday). That newest Mew album moves me sonically and emotionally in ways that few albums can; and while it’s commonly been found in my car’s CD player over the past few years, it didn’t really hit me until this weekend just how much I adore it. So here’s my updated ranking on Mew albums:
  1. Visuals
  2. Frengers
  3. …and the Glass Handed Kites
  4. + –
  5. No More Stores…

Author’s Note: The reason I created this website and write these articles stems from my belief that artists should support other artists, in the same way that art inspires art. My sophomore album Development & Compromise is available now and I’d love for you to hear it.

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