In 1972, singer-songwriter Albert Hammond released the song ‘The Air That I Breathe’ on his album It Never Rains in Southern California (the title track of which is his best-known hit). He wrote the song, which is embedded below as today’s SOTD, with Mike Hazelwood.
One of the great benefits of popular music’s streaming revolution is how it has shortened the time and distance between artist and audience.
Rather than jumping through all the hoops (and cost) that come with a physical release, musicians can simply upload a song to social media 20 minutes after completion.
As we enter the dog days of summer, here’s a sultry Lana Del Rey cover of Sublime’s 1997 track ‘Doin’ Time.’ That song was, in turn, a reimagining of the George Gershwin song ‘Summertime’ from Porgy and Bess.
Del Rey recorded this song for a documentary on the California ska band that was released earlier this year. I’m not sure what Sublime has done that warrants a documentary. I’m not a fan of the whole ska thing, generally.
In the meantime, Del Rey keeps dropping tracks from the album. Today’s track is the fourth, although it is a live performance, not a studio recording. It was actually released back in October, after she performed it at an Apple event with Jack Antonoff on piano, but I missed it until now.
My tw most-anticipated albums of 2019 are Vampire Weekend’s Father of the Bride and Del Rey’s newest. She has been relatively prolific (her last album, Lust For Life, came out in the summer of 2017) but she has also yet to disappoint and I know any new material will be rewarding.
Lana Del Rey is sticking to her pace of a new album every other year, with her next release (amusingly titled Norman Fucking Rockwell) due in early 2019. As a preview, she recently dropped a couple of new tracks on an EP.
‘Mariners Apartment Complex’ and ‘Venice Bitch’ are both vintage Lana Del Rey, though the latter goes in some trippy new directions, including a meandering space-synth solo that stretches the track’s running time to more than 10 minutes. That sounds horrible on paper but the song is hypnotizing and beautiful, like everything Del Rey touches.
This track was reportedly submitted for Spectre, the 24th Bond film, but turned down in favor of Sam Smith’s garbage song ‘Writing’s On the Wall.’ Although it was trashed by critics, ‘Writing’s On the Wall’ went on to win both the Golden Globe and Academy Award for Best Song. Weak.