Tag Archives: you+me

Sylent Mari’s Music Mix – Badass Covers Edition

It’s been three months since I last wrote a post for the site. That’s too damn long. My latest Music Mix is all about stepping away from the frustrations and worries of the world, and spending a few moments reflecting on the positives in life. What makes you happy? What drives you creatively? For me it’s entertainment in any form that allows me to step away from the outside world and my crazy life for a few minutes or hours each day. Music allows me to write, film allows me to think, novels transport me to other worlds, and TV makes me super-emotional over fictional characters (stop killing off all of my favorites!).

I’ve always been a fan of musical artists and bands that do cover versions of their favorite songs and add their own unique flavor to them. There are lots of great cover songs out there and some…eh…we’ll pretend they never exited. In the newest playlist below, I’ve got 20 of my personal favorites or covers that I enjoy. Some are familiar, some are new, but all of them are timeless in their own ways, while paying respect to the original artists.

The first Spotify playlist consists of the original artists of all of the songs listed below. Most of these artists should be familiar to you, but it’s always a good refresher to listen to each of the songs so you get that “A-ha!” moment. The second Spotify playlist is a mirage image of the first, but it features all of the cover versions that I’ve compiled for this post. Take an hour or two out of your day and listen to both playlists and allow yourself to get lost in the music and forget about everything negative in your life currently. Maybe add a few drinks if it’s been THAT kind of a week. ‘Til next time!

P.S. I apologize for my lack of creative verbage. 2016 has burned out quite a few of my brain cells, but at least I hope it’s an entertaining read nonetheless. *thumbs up*

The Originals

The Covers

Carina Round (f/ Aidan Hawken) – “Come Undone” [2014]
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Duran DuranDuran Duran (The Wedding Album) [1993]

Duran Duran, like so many artists and bands before and after them, sampled one of the most iconic drum loops for “Come Undone”: The Soul Searcher’s “Ashley’s Roachclip.” The sampled loop works perfectly in the now-classic DD track, and it’s my favorite song from the band; I’ve included that video above. I can listen to it, close my eyes, and lose myself to the music. That – or I’ve accidentally passed out listening to it (in a good way).

Carina Round’s take on the song gives off the same vibe, but it’s like a thunderstorm that crawls across the sky…then disappears just as quickly. It’s not only a great song to kick off this playlist, but it’s also a good wind-down song for the end of a long day from work/school/life.

Disturbed – “The Sound of Silence” – Immortalized [2015]
– – – – – – – – – –
Simon & GarfunkelThe Graduate Soundtrack [1968]

Disturbed’s cover of the classic Simon & Garfunkel track has been featured in video game trailers, on the radio, and in lots of live performances lately – and for good reason. While this cover does have its detractors, I happen to really dig it. It’s a very different musical direction for Disturbed, who are best known for playing a somewhat-repetitive brand of radio-friendly nu-metalish hard rock. The equally-haunting music video for the song is free of any color and is just so mesmerizing to watch. Turn down the lights, burn a few candles, and play the video or the song to really get its full effect.

Moby – “New Dawn Fades” – I Like To Score [1997]
– – – – – – – – – –
Joy DivisionUnknown Pleasures [1979]

Moby’s take on “New Dawn Fades” was first heard in the 1995 Michael Mann written & directed crime drama Heat, starring the dynamic duo of Robert DeNiro and Al Pacino (with Val Kilmer tagging along). It’s easily one of the most recognizable songs from the soundtrack, and it’s recently found new life again thanks in Person of Interest’s 100th episode: “The Day the World Went Away.” Though the scene is very bittersweet for many fans and comes in the middle of a very mixed, emotional and somewhat-controversial episode, this song is featured in one of my favorite action scenes from the entire series. I’m not sharing the scene here because of spoilers and it needs to be watched to be appreciated, but I’ll leave you with this: Root and Shaw (aka Shoot) having a relationship talk in the middle of a shoot-out. Turn up this song loud as your cruising down the street late at night.

Lily Allen – “Somewhere Only We Know” – Sheezus [2014]
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KeaneHopes and Fears [2009]

A dreamy and sweet cover of one of my favorite songs from Keane. Lily Allen absolutely nails it in her version and I love her vocals on it and the music too. It’s like listening to a lullaby and drifting off to sleep with a smile upon your face. The music video will also brighten up your day as well, as evidenced above. Now leave me with my happy, shiny, positive thoughts…

You+Me – “No Ordinary Love” – rose ave. [2014]
– – – – – – – – – –
SadeLove Deluxe [1992]

Dallas Green (formerly of Alexisonfire; currently of City and Colour) and Alecia Moore (better known as P!nk) formed the indie folk pop duo You+Me in 2014, bringing together two incredibly gifted singers a surprising musical experiment. I’d say it was a success: their debut release, rose ave., is one of my favorite albums of the past five years and combines both singer’s vocal talents with very well-written songs that allow them to really belt it out. The lyrics are equally as thought-provoking as the singers themselves. In the live performance above of the Sade classic “No Ordinary Love” (Deftones also do a brilliant cover of it), watch Green and P!nk create instant musical magic as they own the stage in this haunting cover.

Mimi Page – “Wicked Game” – Requiem EP [2013]
– – – – – – – – – –
Chris IsaakHeart Shaped World [1989]

How many of you remember the original music video for Chris Isaak’s biggest hit? Hot supermodel, sepia tones, a beach… I think I just dated myself (I miss the old MTV).

Though this song has been covered to death by so many artists and bands, I’ve fallen for Mimi Page’s cover after discovering it as a Spotify recommendation. Thanks Spotify! It keeps the essence of the original and adds her own flavor to it, creating a pleasant aural experience.

Alanis Morissette – “Crazy”The Collection [2005]
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SealSeal [1991]

Alanis’ version of Seal’s first radio hit (before “Kiss From A Rose” dominated the airwaves a few years later) isn’t exactly groundbreaking. It’s a straightforward & enjoyable cover that was played heavily in gay clubs around the world when it first came out in 2005. It was an instant favorite for a good reason: the accompanying music video has a queer vibe to it. Whenever LOGO (a U.S. cable channel) played it on what felt like repeat every hour for several weeks during Summer 2005, I usually had a few friends & neighbors coming over to my place to watch it, excited to see this new side to Alanis. When you watch the video, you’ll see why. Well, unless you’re a fan like me and know that she’s played queer-friendly roles on Nip/Tuck, Sex and the City, and a few other projects.

Nine Inch Nails – “Dead Souls” – The Crow Soundtrack [1994]
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Joy DivisionStill (Collector’s Edition) [2008]

For many people my age (30-something) and of all ages who relate to it, the film The Crow and Brandon Lee’s iconic performance as Eric Draven is a reminder of a time when it was OK to be into dark imagery, to be influenced by the Industrial and Goth scenes of the time, and to be inspired to take risks in our own creative processes. The film and the graphic novel/comic series, created by J. O’Barr, also allowed us to not be afraid to create whatever the hell we wanted to artistically, as well as not fearing the darkness that lingers in all of us, and being free to let our emotions out in any artistic medium that spoke to us. The song, the film, and the graphic novel/comic series are such freeing works of art for the loners, the freaks, the independent thinkers in all of us. The fan-edited video that I’ve included melds all three elements together perfectly.

City of Fire – “Enjoy the Silence” – Trial Through Fire [2013]
– – – – – – – – – –
Depeche ModeViolator [1990]

“Enjoy the Silence” is one of the most covered songs of all time, or that’s what it feels like. For people who have derided electronic-based music as being soulless for years, Depeche Mode was one of the many synth-heavy acts that proved that was a bunch of crap. Creating some of the most emotionally-driven music over the past three decades, “Enjoy the Silence” is one of the most critically regarded and universally-loved tracks from DM’s massive discography. The song is timeless and never grows old; it feels fresh even listening to it in this ultra-digital age that we live in, where new music is readily available on various electronic devices. City of Fire, a band formerly led by Burton C. Bell from Fear Factory, does an impressive cover of the song by mixing their heavy rock sound with Burton’s powerful vocal work. A great song to rock out to.

Shiny Toy Guns – “Stripped” [2007]
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Depeche ModeBlack Celebration [1986]

Depeche Mode has influenced so many musical acts since their formation in the late-1970’s, gaining popularity, critical acclaim, and respect & love from fans all over the world. I use their music as inspiration for any creative projects that I’ve worked on in the past, the present, and future ones (I’m sure). It’s rare to find anyone who’s not a fan of their music – whether they’re a huge fan like me or a casual listener.

“Stripped” is one of my favorite songs of theirs and a few bands have covered the song. Rammstein has a really cool cover of it that is a perfect marriage between their music and DM’s. Shiny Toy Guns has also made their own version that I love quite a bit. It sounds very different from the original, but retains the heart & soul of the song. Take a few minutes to throw it on and let the music invade your ears.

Gary Jules (f/ Michael Andrews) – “Mad World” –
Trading Snakeoil for Wolftickets [2002]
– – – – – – – – – –
Tears for FearsThe Hurting [1983]

Donnie Darko. Great cover. Listen to it now.

Lorde – “Everybody Wants to Rule the World” –
The Hunger Games: Catching Fire S0undtrack [2013]
– – – – – – – – – –
Tears for FearsSongs From The Big Chair [1985]

Another indie-friendly track that follows the “slow down the original and make it sound super-depressing” template that many new covers are following. This isn’t a dig at Lorde, though: I like her cover version of this Tears for Fears track (a song I listened to a lot growing up). It’s also a perfect track for The Hunger Games franchise, which this song appears in – on the soundtrack to the second film, Catching Fire. If you’re a Lorde fan, you’ll love this. If not, you might find yourself gritting your teeth while listening to it. It’s all a matter of personal taste, but ’cause I like it I threw it into my playist.

Maria Doyle Kennedy – “How You Remind Me” –
Even Better Than The Real Thing, Vol. 1 [2003]
– – – – – – – – – –
NickelbackSilver Side Up [2001]

If this singer’s name sounds familiar – you might be an Orphan Black fan. Better known as “Siobhan Sadler” (aka “Mrs. S”) on the BBC America series, Maria Doyle Kennedy is also an accomplished musician/singer who has released many records throughout her career. She’s even lent her vocal talents to Orphan Black during the show’s third season, as seen below in this small clip from Entertainment Tonight (excuse the annoying intro):

In her gorgeous minimalist take on the Nickelback staple, MDK transforms the song into a melancholic ballad full of yearning and heartache. Conquering the song and making it her own, as well as one-upping the original, this is one of my favorite cover songs from any artist or band. Taking a very familiar song, deconstructing it, and turning in a simply wonderful performance? MDK nails it with her rendition.

311 – “Love Song” – 50 First Dates Soundtrack
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The CureDisintegration [1989]

This dreamy summertime cover of the Cure classic from 311 was one of the main songs used in the Adam Sandler/Drew Barrymore romantic comedy 50 First Dates. The film is a guilty pleasure of mine: I’m not a fan of Sandler, but I do like Barrymore a lot. If I lived close to a beach, this would be the perfect song to chill out too while hitting the waves or taking an evening stroll on the sand. Or you can lay in a hammock and drink a few cocktails while the night breeze cools you off. It’s a cool track to finish off the day with.

Tiamat – “Sympathy for the Devil” – Skeleton Skeletron [1999]
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The Rolling StonesBeggars Banquet [1968]

For a doomy/gothic metal take on the Rolling Stones classic, check out Tiamat’s slow & heavy version. Add it to your future Halloween playlist, or allow the black skies of nighttime envelop and guard you as you listen to the bewitching vocals of lead singer Johan Edlund sing you off to a nightmare. This track is a perfect example of paying homage to the original while retaining Tiamat’s artistic identity. If you’re a fan of bands like Paradise Lost, My Dying Bride, or Type O Negative, Tiamat’s cover is perfect for you (the band is totally worth checking out too).

Chet Faker – “No Diggity” – Thinking in Textures [2011]
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BlackstreetAnother Level [1996]

This song takes me back to high school and for good reason: I was a freshman back in ’96. I LOVE the R&B, hip-hip, and soul music that came out during that decade because the songs were different, they were fresh, and they were just a blast to listen to. Blackstreet’s “No Diggity” is one of my favorite ’90s songs ’cause it has such a cool groove to it, a hypnotic beat, and Dr. Dre lending his skills to enhance the track.

Chet Faker does an equally funky cover that will transport you back to 20 years ago (!), to the time you first heard this jam on the radio. With a folksy vibe added to it and an electronic underbeat, the cover flows so well and it makes the perfect addition to anyone’s summer playlists or for house parties. If you can survive the heat long enough to dance/chill out to it, of course (Southwest USA FTW!).

Nirvana – “The Man Who Sold the World” –
MTV Unplugged In New York [1994]
– – – – – – – – – –
David BowieThe Man Who Sold the World [1970]

Back in ancient times, MTV used to dedicate a whole hour or so to an artist or band and give them an awesome platform to show off their acoustic skills to a very intimate live audience. Sometimes they released the performances on record and fans were able to get that same intimate feel at home. Alice in Chains had a memorable MTV Unplugged performance (check out “Nutshell” and “Down in a Hole” as two perfect examples), and I bought Alanis’ (it’s a great listen). Out of all of the MTV Unplugged performances that were released, Nirvana’s will forever remain to be the most iconic, with the whole band stripping down the music to its acoustic foundations, and Kurt Cobain just singing his soul out. One of the most popular songs from that acoustic session was their take on the David Bowie classic “The Man Who Sold the World,” from the album of the same name. Take a trip back in time to 1994 and watch the performance.

Yuna – “Come As You Are” [2011]
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NirvanaNevermind [1991]

Confession Time: Though they are hugely important to the generations before me and my very own, I’ve never been a Nirvana fan. I do like some of their tracks, but I was more of an Alice in Chains fan during the time that Nirvana was king of the alternative genre. Now that I’m older, I’ve been learning to appreciate their music a bit more, but “Come As You Are” has always been my favorite track from them. I haven’t heard any other music from Yuna, who’s a popular Malaysian pop singer/performer, but she nails the cover in an indie-friendly performance.

Amy Lee – “With or Without You” [2015]
– – – – – – – – – –
U2The Joshua Tree [1987]

Amy Lee, best known as the lead singer/co-songwriter of Evanescence, delivers a really trippy and Evanescence-esque version of the U2 classic. That’s really the only way that I can describe this cover. Some fans will love it and others will hate it, and then there are those that will be like, “Huh – that’s pretty groovy.” If you’re a fan of Lee’s vocal work, this is a perfect song to listen to late at night or during the middle of the longest rainstorm ever.

Fear Factory (f/ Gary Numan) – “Cars” – Obsolete [1998]
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Gary Numan – The Pleasure Principle [1979]

This popular Fear Factory track became known to video game fans courtesy of its inclusion on the Test Drive 6 soundtrack. The cover itself was the second song released from FF’s 1998 effort Obsolete, following lead single “Shock” (also the album’s opening track). In a throwback to the original tune, FF invited Gary Numan to contribute vocals to their cover version, which later led to his inclusion in the space-age music video they shot for the single. The video is available above for your headbanging needs. “Cars” would later become one of FF’s most recognizable tracks, and it’s a really fun cover to jam out to.

Sylent Mari’s Music Mix [08.13.15] – #4

Wow – it’s been nine months since I last posted a Music Mix post? Geez… That’s nine months of missing out on some really great songs that I’ve been listening to non-stop on Spotify. I rarely listen to terrestrial radio anymore, although I do jam out to many of the CD’s that I still own. Yup – still like to have a physical product in my hands ’cause I’m all about cover art and lyric booklets.

This newest mix is a bit of a mellower breakdown of a variety of artists from different genres to wind down the work day, chill out and relax to over the weekend, or maybe if you’re feeling a bit creative and need some music to inspire the right side of your brain. Many of these songs are indie-based (a genre I never thought I’d dig until recently), and more than a few have been featured in television shows and film.

While I highly suggest listening to these tunes with earbuds/headphones on, you can still rock out to ’em through speakers as background ambient noise. Great for parties! Or if you’re an insomniac like me, it’s a cool playlist to fall asleep to.

If you have any future suggestions for songs or artists to check out, just give me a recommendation in the comments below. If ya got Twitter, feel free to tweet me @SylentMari.

Fear Factory – “Enhanced Reality” [Bonus Track] – Genexus

This is the newest song in both the playlist and this post; Genexus was just released this past Friday (August 7th). If you’re an FF fan and were disappointed by the so-so The Industrialist, this album is definitely worth checking out ’cause it’s a vast improvement over that last effort. This bonus track can be found on the digipak version of the album and it’s the last track, and it’s a great album closer. One of their mellower tracks that’s reminiscent of songs like “Timelessness” from Obsolete and “(Memory Imprints) Never End” from Digimortal, “Enhanced Reality” is just a beautiful ambient industrial track that’s more electronic than most of their songs. It’s one of my new favorite songs and I haven’t stopped listening to it since I first heard it. A perfect track to listen to while ending the evening on a high note.

Aquilo – “Put Me Down” – Calling Me EP

I dig Aquilo quote a bit. A mixture of dream pop & alternative R & B,  they’re a go-to for me whenever I am feeling a bit stressed out with the bazillion things I have going on in life. I just throw on some of their music, close my eyes, and imagine being anywhere else in the world. Actually – I think of their music as “I’m Already On Vacation” music. I’m physically here yet mentally on an extended vacation while listening to them. See out the rest of their music now.

Highly Suspect – “Lydia” – Mister Asylum

If you like your alterna-rock a little down-n-dirty with a small-bar feel, “Lydia” is the perfect song to jam out to. The “heaviest” track in the playlist, it’s a great rockin’ single from newer band Highly Suspect – a band that has a long career ahead of them. This is a song you play when you’ve have a house party going on or a couple of friends over and you’re relaxing outside and wanting something a bit louder to end your evening on a high note.

Adaline – “Broken Glass” – Famous for Fire

I love Adaline’s music. Her voice is simply majestic and calming, and her lyrics touch upon almost every emotion a person can feel in their lifetime. Famous for Fire is a really good album that has many songs worth listening to, and “Broken Glass” is one of my favorites from it. It’s got a driving, somewhat-grungy guitar riff that anchors the song, a groovy bassline, and great percussive work while Adaline sings her heart out. She has a new record coming up that I’m definitely looking forward to.

Other suggested tracks to listen to off of Famous for Fire: “Clean,” the title track, and “Poor You.”

Alanis Morissette – “You Owe Me Nothing in Return – Under Rug Swept

As is tradition, I always add at least one Alanis song to my music mix. This is a Top 10 favorite song for me, if not a Top 5 one. It’s held a lot of meaning to me for years since the album it’s featured on, Under Rug Swept, was released 13 years ago. It’s about giving your all to someone – whether it be a friend, significant other, or someone important in your life – and not expecting anything in return. So a selfless act of kindness that doesn’t need to be rewarded. What’s so cool about this song is that you can interpret it in different ways, but it describes my attitude towards those are in my inner-circle.This is also one of Alanis’ slower, more electronic, and lyrically fluid (the lyrics flow together smoothly) songs.

You+Me – “Break the Cycle” – rose ave.

Are you into dreamy folk pop? Do you have a quiet spot that you like to sit in and just daydream the hours away? Let this song help you drift off into a few moments of quiet and silence. You+Me is a unique musical collaboration between singers P!nk (love her) and Dallas Green (formerly of Alexisonfire/now solo – City and Colour). “Break the Cycle” is a gorgeous piece of acoustic pop that takes you away from the world for a few minutes, returning you with a smile on your face and a lightness in your heart. Their debut album, rose ave., is worth checking out and it includes a wonderful cover of Sade’s “No Ordinary Love.”

Röyskopp – Eple – Melody AM

Some instrumental electronic music to zone out too. Another new favorite of mine.

Lorde – “Yellow Flicker Beat” – The Hunger Games: Mockingjay Part 1 Soundtrack

I haven’t seen the last Hunger Games film yet – too much too watch, not enough time to watch it all. This song is featured on the soundtrack to the first part of the Mockingjay two-parter and is one of my favorite songs from Lorde. It’s got a driving groovy melody that’s catchy and a great dance tune too, or just to chill out to. Even if you’re not a Lorde fan, it’s still worth checking out.

Jacko Hooper – “Run Away With Me” – For You EP

For fans of Ben Howard, I cannot recommend Jacko Hooper’s first EP enough. He’s a terrific songwriter with such a strong and melodic signing voice, and you can feel him singing his soul out. His lyrics deserve your undivided attention and you can easily get lost in them. He was a surprise find for me and I’m sure you’ll be as into his music as I am.

Mumford & Sons – “Believe” – Wilder Mind

I was never really a Mumford & Sons fan; they aren’t the type of musical act that I normally listen to. Lately I’ve been trying to expand my musical vocabulary by listening to a lot of indie music and the many sub-genres that fall under it, and I’ve been greatly impressed. You might’ve heard “Believe” on mainstream rock and pop stations, and for good reason: it is a most excellent song. I haven’t stopped listening to it since I first heard it.

Zella Day – “Compass” – Kicker

This was featured in the following shows: The Vampire Diaries, Season 6, Episode 9 – “I Alone” & Catfish: The TV Show, Season 4, Episode 7 – “Whitney & Bre”

“Compass” is a rainy-day song for me. It’s hard to really describe the song for me, but pay close attention to the lyrics and vocals. Another song that requires your full focused attention.

Ghost Loft – “So High” – “So High” Single

There’s a few songs in this playlist that I discovered while seeking out fan videos for my favorite featured couple from Person Of Interest: Root & Shaw (Shoot). A lot of these videos helped pique my interest (ha!) in the show, which I really didn’t get into when it first premiered; what a fool I was. But the specific songs chosen for many of them hit me in the ‘feels’ quite hard, especially if you are caught up on the evolution of Shoot from their first meeting to what awaits us in Season Five (I’m a little nervous). “So High” is a terrific song that is pretty and soulful and kinda melts your heart, too.

The xx – “Infinity” – xx

This song was featured in the following shows: 90210, Season 2, Episode 8 – “Women’s Intuition” & Person Of Interest, Season 4, Episode 7 – “Honor Among Thieves”

While the song above was featured in a Person Of Interest fan video, this one pops up in an episode of the show during a really funny & flirty scene. Shaw is undercover trying to help out Team Machine’s latest “number,” a handsome thief named Tomas, and in the middle of her intimate first date/meeting with him, Root jumps onto comms and starts teasing Shaw about her date and brings up the flirting to levels past 10. Shaw is trying her hardest to not be affected by Root – but then Root had to mention their time spent hiding out in a CIA safe house, complete with zip ties & a hood and Shaw almost falters.
The rest of the episode is really, really good.

Band Of Skulls – “Cold Sweat” – Himalayan

This song was featured in the following show: Lost Girl, Season 5, Episode 2 – “Like Hell (Pt. 2)”

I don’t want to spoil the scene(s) that this song appears in because Lost Girl is still airing, and it’s best to binge-watch the fifth season after every episode has aired. The final eight episodes of the series will premiere on Sunday, September 6th and will be eight continuous weeks ’til the series finale. All I will say of this scene is that it features two sexy scenes featuring two core female characters in different scenarios. “Cold Sweat” adds to the sexual tension in both scenes by offering a sexy ’70’s-style rock groove to the mix.

The Kills – “Future Starts Slow” – Blood Pressures

This song is featured in the following shows: Political Animals (theme song) / Grey’s Anatomy, Season 8, Episode 4 – “What Is It About Men” / CSI: NY, Season 8, Episode 6 – “Get Me Out of Here!” / The Vampire Diaries, Season 3, Episode 17 – “Break On Through” / Person Of Interest, Season 2, Episode 16 – “Relevance” / Reckless, Season 1, Episode 11 – “And So It Begins”

This is quite the popular song for TV shows and for good reason –  it’s such a kickass tune. The Kills are a newer favorite group and I first discovered their music thanks to Lost Girl, which features “Sour Cherry” in Season One (“Vexed”) and “You Don’t Own the Road” in Season 3 (“Caged Fae”). For a lot of Person Of Interest fans, this song was introduced to them in Shaw’s first episode, “Relevance.” It’s a great introductory episode to a character that doesn’t take shit, takes charge of situations, is a one-woman army, and will even flirt with danger (literally). As Shaw ends quite the chaotic day for her, the song plays as her ex-government past comes up and tries to get rid of her. Obviously that didn’t happen, and we get this song that will always be associated with Shaw.

The Kite Strings – “Arcadia” – Vessel

So, so dreamy. Oh so dreamy. A great day-beginning song.

Maria Doyle Kennedy – “How You Remind Me” – Even Better Than The Real Thing Vol. 1

How do you make a Nickelback somewhat presentable & enjoyable for people who hate their music with the burning passion of a million suns? Be a badass singer and do a badass acoustic cover of it. If the name Maria Doyle Kennedy seems familiar to you, you might recognize her best as “Siobhan Sadler/Mrs. S” on one of my favorite shows: Orphan Black. Heck, she even sang in one episode of OB towards the end of Season 3 – “Insolvent Phantom of Tomorrow.” You need to seek the rest of her musical catalog immediately – she’s got so many songs to listen to, and she has a really mesmerizing & beautiful voice.

Kygo featuring Conrad Sewell – “Firestone” – “Firestone” Single

If I were to put this song under a genre, I’d stick it under indie alternative R & B dance (say that five times fast). It’s a cool song to do some moderate dancing to or bumping at a house party. That’s what the trendy people do, right?

Nothing But Thieves – “Wake Up Call” – “Wake Up Call” Single

If you like Death Cab for Cutie, The Black Keys, or Mumford & Sons, you’ll love this song. That is all.

Amber Run – “I Found” – Pilot EP

The song was featured in the following shows: Teen Wolf, Season 5, Episode 8 – “Ouroboros” & Saving Hope, Season 3, Episode 3 – “Awakenings”

This beautiful & melancholy song has been used in several fan videos for Shoot and each one that I’ve seen breaks my heart every time; that’s how I heard of it the first time and have loved it since. The song is absolutely perfect for the unconventional couple, and both videos below perfectly capture the heartbreak, the unconditional caring, and soul-crushing moments that make Shoot one of the best fandom couples ever. Amber Run has several other great tracks, but this is definitely my favorite of theirs’.

Klo – “False Calls” – Cusp EP

Another great day-ender. Funky beats and smooth vocals. You’re welcome.

Sylent Mari’s “Weekly” Music Mix [11.17.14] – #2

Sure – it’s not exactly in keeping with the idea of weekly musical posts that I had planned on doing a few months ago, but I’m trying kids! Here’s my latest post on music that I’ve been listening to and on heavy rotation on my Spotify playlists. Some of the songs are the newest hits that are hot at this moment, and other songs are ones that I’ve listened to for years that I’ve always loved. You may recognize a few of the tunes from various television shows or cinematic features – I’ll indicate what they’ve appeared in with each entry.

If you’d like to hear more from a particular artist, or have any artists I should check out based on the selections in this playlist, share your favorites with me in the comments below, tweet me your suggestions to @SylentMari, or shoot me an e-mail to sylentmari @ gmail.com.

A Spoilery Reminder: Some of the songs below come from significant moments from the TV shows and films. Major spoilers will have a warning before the scene in which the song is played is revealed. Some of the shows and films mentioned are: Lost Girl, The Matrix, Buffy the Vampire Slayer, Queen of the Damned, The Crow, and The Walking Dead.

Alanis Morissette – “I Remain” – Prince of Persia: The Sands of Time Original Motion Picture Soundtrack

Alanis has written some really beautiful and fantastic soundtrack songs over the span of her career, and this is one of them. “I Remain” is featured in the ending credits of the Jake Gyllenhaal-Ben Kingsley-Gemma Arterton film Prince of Persia: The Sands of Time, (loosely) based on the video game series of the same name. An interesting mix of Middle Eastern rhythms and orchestral magic, Alanis’ quiet and poignant vocals and lyrics compliment the music perfectly. She was nominated for a Golden Globe award for the song, which she performs quite frequently in concert in recent years, breaking up the song in three-part segments throughout her set. One of my favorite songs.

Alice in Chains – “Down In A Hole” – Dirt

If I had to come up with a Top 50 list of my all-time favorite songs, “Down In A Hole” would be featured on it, and probably in my Top 20. My favorite AIC track, this beautifully depressing song is one of the band’s strongest, and one that even non-fans are familiar with. It’s an even harder song to listen to years after Layne Staley’s unfortunate death due to a drug overdose – his haunting vocals still bring chills to me. One of my most memorable concert experiences was hearing this song live during Jerry Cantrell’s set when he opened up for Nickelback back in 2002, when Nickelback was starting to become the huge act that they are now. Layne was discovered almost two weeks before that performance, and hearing Jerry talking about the passing of his bandmate and friend while trying not to cry was hard. What made that moment even more somber and memorable was when he dedicated this song to Layne and seeing almost of the concert-goers around me pull out their lighters and holding them up high in the air in solidarity of the fallen singer, while we all sang along to the song. Such a powerful moment and one I will never forget.

Amy Lee (feat. Dave Eggar) – “Lockdown” – War Story: Official Motion Picture Soundtrack

“Amy Lee, Amy Lee…that name sounds very familiar.” If you guessed that she is the co-founder and frontwoman of Evanescence, then virtual cookies for you! While that band is currently in-stasis as Amy regroups (and sues her former record label for missing profits), she got the opportunity to venture into a creative area that’s she always wanted to tackle: scoring a feature film. That dream came true when she helped score the music for a film called War Story, released this year and starring Catherine Keener and Ben Kingsley. The music is a mixture of traditional film orchestral composition with electronic and ambient sounds swimming in-between, and Amy Lee’s signature vocals accompanying a few of the tracks on the soundtrack. “Lockdown” sounds like it could’ve been featured on Evanescence’s last record. Hope Amy decides to do more feature films with that “epic” ton she’s always featuring in her band’s music.

Ben Howard – “Oats in the Water” – The Burgh Island EP

A fan-favorite from this show’s fourth season, “Oats in the Water” plays during a pivotal scene in Season Four / Episode Five of The Walking Dead, in an episode called “Internment.” MASSIVE SPOILER ALERT! In the previous episode, Rick told Carol to “F- off” after he found out that she had mercy-killed Karen and another survivor in the prison after they were becoming worse from the horrible virus/flu that they had contracted from another survivor. You can argue with me about the nature of the killing, but as we return to the prison, we see Hershel doing the best that he can under the circumstances as he tries to treat those who are also succumbing to the same virus/flu – including Glenn. END SPOILER ALERT! Rick and Hershel have a conversation separated by a glass window that peeks into the prison’s Death Row, where the sick survivors are currently being quarantined. At one point Hershel turns to his Bible, opens it, and starts to sob as this song is playing in the background. One of my favorite episodes from the so-so fourth season.

Björk – “All is Full of Love” – Homogenic / Greatest Hits

You gotta love Björk and all of her eccentricities that bleed into her widely imaginative musical career. You also have to be cautious around her or she’ll go nuclear on you (she’s mellowed out in recent years and hasn’t had any major temper tantrums). Björk has always been a favorite artist of mine because her music is so hard to pin down and so different from most everything out there, past and present. “All is Full of Love” was featured in the 1999 religious-themed film Stigmata, starring Patricia Arquette as an atheist who has strange wounds appearing on her hands and body, which look strangely similar to the wounds Jesus himself had on the cross (if you believe that Jesus existed). Of course random stuff starts happening to her, and it gets a bit convoluted at times and a bit heavy-handed. As an atheist I found it a little offensive because it presumes that we’re selfish jerks until we “see the light,” one of the messages of this film. I hate that stereotype – most of us are very compassionate people who love, care, and try to help our fellow human beings in any way we can. Mini-rant over – ahem. Besides being featured in that film, this is a gorgeous track that is fast becoming of my new current favorite tracks.

Christophe Beck – “Close Your Eyes (Buffy & Angel’s Love Theme) – Buffy the Vampire Slayer: Original Television Series Soundtrack

Lots of fangirl feels ahead! There are songs that sometimes bring strong emotions to us when we hear them, reminding us of certain moments in our lives or things that we’ve experienced while watching our favorite films or television series. In the case of this instrumental track featured in Buffy the Vampire Slayer, it gives me chills along with tears. MASSIVE SPOILER ALERT! Playing towards the end of the Season Two episode “Becoming, Part 2” (Episode 22), Angel lost his soul midway through Season Two and became his psychotic vampiric self again, Angelus, who succeeded in mentally, physically, and emotionally torturing Buffy and her friends. He even killed a then-key member of the Scooby Gang – technopagan and Giles’ lover, Jenny Calendar. Buffy and Angel have an epic swordfight and just as Buffy’s about to kill Angelus, sending his evil self to Hell and closing a portal to a demon dimension that he had opened up, his soul return. Angelus becomes Angel again, and the poor guy has no clue what’s happened since his demon took over again. Poor Buffy is so conflicted at this moment – while her lover has returned, she has to kill him to save the world. She whispers to him, “Close your eyes,” as they hold each other – while this track plays in the background – and she runs him through with her sad. END SPOILER ALERT! Also one of my favorite moments from any TV series, as sad as it is.

Depeche Mode – “Surrender” – “Only When I Lose Myself” Single B-Side (UK)

This song is one of the tracks left off from Depeche Mode’s ULTRA album, and I wish it had made the final tracklist. ULTRA is also one of the all-time favorite albums, and this would’ve been a nice track to close out the album with. When I hear this song, I imagine a 1920’s or 1930’s-inspired video with burlesque dancers, gangsters, flappers, and a detective trying to solve a crime in film noir-style, complete with traditional black-and-white film. I see the band performing in a smoky bar, with Dave Gahan front and center and performing his magic in a very dapper outfit. If you’re a DM fan that hasn’t heard this song yet, listen above and seek it out if you can find the single, ‘cause I still love to buy albums and singles in physical forms like vinyl or CD’s.

Econoline Crush – “Razorblades and Bandaides” – The Devil You Know

When I look at my many playlists of songs that I love and am influenced by in my creative works, I’ve noticed that many of them are dark, bitter, emotionally heavy, depressing, and break-up songs. I’ve always liked sad songs and I sometimes find them more interesting than upbeat or “happy” tracks. This song from Canadian band Econoline Crush is one of my favorite break-up songs. “I miss you more than words could ever say, I miss you every single empty day…” The thoughts those words reflect sometimes swim through our heads after we’ve gone through a painful end to a relationship, but maybe it had to end for a reason – to find ourselves, to find the person we’re really meant to be with, etc. If you’ve never heard of Econoline Crush, check out their albums The Devil You Know and Affliction and the Purge EP. They’re a mixture of post-grunge, industrial, and heavy alternative rock.

Fluke – “Zion” – The Matrix Reloaded Original Motion Picture Soundtrack

A sexy funky ambient track that appears during that massive rave scene in Zion. We all know the scene – massive underground dancing orgy-athon intercut with scenes of Trinity and Neo getting it on in an undisclosed location…or their pad in Zion. It’s a cool ambient dance track and a perfect way to wind down your evening after a night out.

Garbage – “#1 Crush” – Absolute Garbage (Special Edition) / Romeo + Juliet Original Motion Picture Soundtrack

I think this is one of the mist heavenly and sexiest songs of all time. Very 1990’s but that’s not a bad thing. This Garbage hit was heard all over alternative stations when Baz Luhrman’s Romeo + Juliet came out. Do you remember the film? A then-modern contemporary take starring Leonardo DiCaprio (before he became a mega-star thanks to Titanic) and Claire Danes (known for her role on my So-Called Life at the time), the film is definitely interesting, seeing characters dressed up in ‘90’s fashions while quoting the classical Shakesperean lines from the play. The soundtrack itself is worth seeking, but “#1 Crush” is the standout. The track oozes sex in the music and Shirley Manson’s lustful vocals, and should be added to any bedtime playlist. Here’s a great live version from Monterrey, Mexico from 2012.

The Hundred in the Hands – “Keep It Low” – Red Night

The theme of this week’s playlist is electronic, ambient, moody music to chill out or be creative to. Or to have sexy nighttime moments to. “Keep It Low” fits all three categories and is a more recent favorite track. Featured in Season Three / Episode Five “Faes Wide Shut,” the song is played during the intro scene. Bo and Lauren, after having a serious discussion about their relationship at the end of the previous episode, agree to Bo feeding on others to heal herself and give poor Lauren a break form their nightly sexual escapades. The women are dressed to the lines as they look for a potential “victim” for Bo to bed while hanging out in the Dal Riata, and there’s a hilarious moment where Lauren gives poor Trick (Bo’s grandfather) a bit TMI about trying to deal with her girlfriend’s “coital requirements.”

Keane – “Somewhere Only We Know” – Hopes & Fears

Yes, this song received lots of radioplay a few years ago, but I love it. I tend to discover songs long after they’ve hit the airwaves because I don’t listen to local radio stations – I’m usually listening to our one local progressive talk station. And modern radio sucks because of all the commercials and the same songs are always on rotation, even if it’s a classic rock station. Keane’s “Somewhere Only We Know” has also been featured in several television series’ and films, including Grey’s Anatomy, Cold Case, Life, and the film He’s Just Not That Into You. Groove to this UK band and transport yourself five years back to 2009.

Lioness – “They Clip the Wings of Birds” – The Golden Killer

Featured towards the end of Lost Girl’s fourth episode in Season Three, “Fae-de to Black,” this song plays in the background MASSIVE SPOILER ALERT! while Bo confesses to her girlfriend, Lauren, that she slept with her ex-boyfriend, Dyson, to help herself heal after receiving a very serious injury while trying to save a human earlier in the episode. As Lauren stares at Bo, angry tears threatening to fall from her eyes, Bo pleads with her to say something. Instead of screaming at Bo or leaving her apartment, Lauren leans in and grabs Bo and pulls in for a kiss. Defeated, Lauren and Bo come to the realization at this moment that Bo needs other sexual partners to fully heal herself as a Succubus, but she will remain monogamous to Lauren. END SPOILER ALERT! One of the few times a show has even broached the topic of open relationships, in this particular instance it’s necessary for Bo to survive and what I like most about it is that it’s not frowned upon or seen as anything salacious. Along with the Buffy the Vampire Slayer scene mentioned above, this always always makes me cry. At the time it aired it was very hard for me to watch, having gone through a break-up a few months before.

Massive Attack – “Safe From Harm (Perfecto Mix””)” – The Insider: Original Motion Picture Soundtrack

Used in in the final scene in one of director Michael Mann’s best films, 1999’s The Insider. If you’re unfamiliar with the film, it’s based on a true story. In the fictionalized version, a research chemist who worked for one of the major tobacco companies exposed disastrous information about the harmful effects of cigarettes on consumers in an expose on CBS’ 60 Minutes. The man went through personal and professional ruin, but the film perfectly illustrates what happens to whistleblowers who release and unveil information that they believe the public needs to know about. Al Pacino plays a 60 Minutes producer named Lowell Bergman, and as Massive Attack closes out the film, we see Al Pacino making a cool exit out of a building in the only way Al Pacino can. 

P!nk – “Try” – The Truth About Love

I’ll just leave the music video here:

My favorite P!nk song. It’s beautiful, it’s somber, it’s heartbreaking, it has more adjectives I could use, and it’s also one of the best pop songs released in recent years. The video is beautifully shot and executed and breathtaking. If you’ve seen any of P!nk’s live performances, you know how well-choreographed they are with the acrobatics and dancing. I never get tired of listening to this song and could put it on repeat easily.

Robot Koch (feat. John LaMonica) – “Nitesky” – The Other Side

I started seeking out more of Robot Koch’s music after I first heard the song below in a fan-made music video. I found this song on Spotify and instantly loved it. Along with the song below, I can’t easily describe it, but it’s a sad, quiet, melodic track to listen to in the background when company’s over, or alone and with your thoughts as the day ends.

Robot Koch (feat. Susie Suh) – “Here With Me” – “Here With Me” Single

I don’t have any words to describe this song beyond amazing and touching. The first time I heard this song was in a Lost Girl fanvid for Doccubus called “Here With Me,” same as the song. The song wouldn’t leave me afterwards, so I immediately sought it out. I’ve added the video below, and even if you’re not a fan of Lost Girl or Doccubus, the video is still worth checking out because it’s very well-done and edited. The song is also featured in Season 1 / Episode 3 of the show The Blacklist.

Sara Bareilles – “Gravity” – Little Voice

I always discover really good songs from artists that I like years later, it seems like. Maybe I should buy more albums when I get the chance. I love “Gravity.” It’s a song that kills me a little on the inside every time I hear it, but only because it’s such a beautiful piece of music. I discovered this song while listening to Alanis Morissette’s Valentine’s Day Spotify playlist. She had this song and “I Choose You” on her list, and I thought it was cool that she was a Sara fan too. If the song sounds really familiar, you may have heard in several different shows, like The Vampire Diaries, Army Wives, Community, and So You Think You Can Dance.

Static-X – Cold (Radio/Deep Freeze Mix) – Queen of the Damned: Original Motion Picture Soundtrack

This movie was the epitome of everything wrong with a movie that was trying to pander to teens and be “original” in a post-Matrix world: really horrible CGI, really wooden acting, a very generic soundtrack half-filled with decent songs, and destroying the integrity of not one but two books that was its source material: Anne Rice’s The Vampire Lestat and Interview with the Vampire. Some of the highlights of the movie were Aaliyah (for the younger readers out there, a popular R & B singer from the ‘90’s who died too young in the early 2000’s) as the vampiric goddess/queen Akasha, mother of all vampires, and this song from Static-X, which was featured in the film. Wayne Static also lent his vocals to the song “Not Meant for Me,” another song from the soundtrack. Check out the video for the song on Youtube – it has a cool vampiric theme to it.

Stone Temple Pilots – “Big Empty” – Purple / The Crow: Original Motion Picture Soundtrack

This song, along with a few others on this playlist, were brought to you by the 1990’s – or when alternative rock was badass. Stone Temple Pilots was one of the biggest bands of the decade, and they were featured on several soundtracks, including this one. It’s a perfect addition to The Crow and it brings back lots of memories of the decade and the first time I watched the film and ventured more into the world of The Crow.

You+Me – “Break the Cycle” – rose ave.

Have you heard of You+Me? No? A musical duo that’s flown under the radar how could that be? And those vocals sure do sound familiar… If you haven’t listened to the indie folk pop stylings of You+Me yet, drop everything that you’re doing and seek out their debut album, rose ave., and you won’t be disappointed. You+Me is the collaborative duo of Alecia Moore and Dallas Green, who are better known by their stage names and projects: P!nk and City and Colour. Dallas is also the former frontman for the Canadian group Alexisonfire, if you’re into the modern post-hardcore movement. “Break the Cycle” was one of the first singles released from their debut album, and it’s a wonderful example of their musical collaboration, and something different for P!nk fans to check out. I hope they continue to make more music in the future because rose ave. is a really terrific album.

The xx – “Angels” – Coexist

See the Robot Koch entries. A pretty minimalist ambient electronic number with great lyrics. Great dream pop to lull yourself to sleep with. Featured in the new version of 90210, Gossip Girl, and Made in Chelsea.