Merry Christmas-Eve everyone! Hope you all have a great holiday with your family and friends. In keeping with the Favorite Things themed entries, today's entry is highlighting some of my favorite records and movies.
Of all time...Neon Bible by Arcade Fire
This changes on a regular basis, but since this album came out it has been the reigning champion. Arcade Fire is a band that is not for everyone. They have their catchy songs and their songs that are a little off the beaten path. To me Neon Bible is their most accessible album, but that's not why I like it. It's my favorite because it flows together well, tells a story, and all the songs on here are solid. Indie rock at it's finest.
Standout Tracks: Keep the Cars Running, No Cars Go
To relax to...New York Tendaberry by Laura Nyro
I think Laura Nyro is one of the most underrated singers of all time. She wrote many hits for so many other people and was never really recognized by fame for her major contributions. Better than Carly Simon. Better than Carol King. Her voice is powerful and her songs are moving and soulful. This album is a tribute to my favorite place on her (and hers), New York City. It's my quintessential rainy day, Fall time, 4 in the afternoon album.
Standout Tracks: Tom Cat Goodbye, Gibsom Street
To get hyped up to...Tonight: Franz Ferdinand by Franz Ferdinand
When we have people over I go all out and even when I'm excited to entertain, I need a little something to get me going. So when I know I've got some serious cooking ahead of me I pop this CD and get all revved up. This album by Franz Ferdinand reminds me of everything that was good about the 60s, 70s, and 80s. Dancey synth music with heavy bass and just a tinge of 60s lyricism in there. Usually midway through this album Nick finds his way downstairs and a dance party starts in the kitchen, apron, spatula and all.
Standout Tracks: Ulysses, Can't Stop Feeling
For the Holidays...A Christmas Gift to You by Phil Spector
Psycho killer producer aside, this album is timeless. One of my favorite Christmas songs of all time (Baby Please Come Home by Darlene Love) is on here, and that alone I could listen to over and over again. But you add in the wall of sound as it translates to Christmas songs and I'm a goner. Christmas is about celebrating and being happy, and this album, to me at least, sums up that mood.
To play when company is over...Time Out by Dave Brubeck
This classic album has one of the greatest jazz songs of all time on it (Take Five) and sets the mood for any cocktail hour, dinner party, or Mad Men themed shindig. Not everyone likes jazz, but just about everyone can appreciate this album.
Of all time...Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind
Jim Carey and Kate Winslet have their memories erased and some how manage to still be in love at the same time. It's a powerful message about the nature of love and learning from one's mistakes. Maybe not the best movie to watch right after you break up with someone, but anyone who has gone through a rough patch in any relationship can totally relate.
Holiday...Charlie Brown Christmas
This soundtrack is amazing and the story is timeless. It makes me feel like an excited little kid again. Who doesn't like Charlie Brown, Linus, and Snoopy? Need I say more?
To play when boys are over...Tropic Thunder
Nonstop laughter. Poop jokes. Sex jokes. Drug jokes. Action. Stuff blows up. Fake blood and guts. Tom Cruise in a hideous fat suit. Perfect guys movie? Maybe.
To play when girls are over...Pride and Prejudice
Just like the boys moving having all the right stuff, Pride and Prejudice has all the things girls like in a romantic chick flick. Drama, nice clothes, beautiful scenery (both the nature and the actors), British accents, and a schmoopy lovey dovey ending. If you want to watch a movie and feel good about love, this is as good as it gets.