Friday, April 19, 2024

Daily Jam - A Place We Like

This column was originally published in 2017, and it's kinda wild to re-read these things because of how much things have changed (both good and bad) in just seven years.

As the divide in this country broadens and expands by the minute, I try to take the slightest bit of solace in the fact that at least as far as pop music is concerned, the divisions that seemed so prevalent and moored into our general psyches when I was a teenager have blurred and begun to dissipate. The Millennial audience and younger, as maligned as they are by both the cranky old farts like myself (Gen-X) and the even crankier older farts ahead of me (Baby Boomers), tend to view music as music and pop as pop. Liking a Top 40 artist and some underground innovator in the same breath has become the norm. It’s all apples and apples now, artists drawing from any and every conceivable inspiration to create…pop music. Indie rock bands are just as likely to experiment with bubblegummy pop sounds as post punk bands are to dabble in hip-hop. It’s kind of amazing. Strange and interesting and amazing. And while it’s been a little difficult at times to realign myself into this way of thinking (I will never understand the allure of Drake), it’s been rewarding, and certainly freeing, a dropping of all pretenses and judgement that would have been unheard of for a music snob like me 15 or 20 years ago. It’s like I’m 8 years old again.

And I dig it.

Sweet and bouncy pop sounds that I may have turned my nose up at over a decade ago now work their way into my steady listening habits, probably none so much as the one-off 2010 collaboration between synthy rock acts Hooray for Earth and Twin Shadow, and their absolutely infectious “A Place We Like.” It’s not that I would necessarily have disliked the song when I was younger, but rather, I would have been far more secretive in my affinity for it. And that’s just ridiculous because from the opening electric piano riff, the instantly clap-inducing beat, and the soaring little bits of synthesizer, I fall hard for this song every single time I hear it. It’s 80’s-indebted, singsongy, and bobbing, something that my body, heart, and soul gravitate towards. I could listen to this song until the end of time.

I’m sure that someday you’ll catch me energetically singing it in my car.

Listen below, our Daily Jam.

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