Tuesday, December 30, 2014

Top albums of 2014

This was a tough year for tunes.  I almost didn’t think I would make a top 10 for 2014.  For me, the year had some SUPER bright highlights, but was otherwise, pretty dim.  I just haven’t been jiving with a lot of what’s been coming out.  However, I still managed to put together a Top 10 New (or, New to Me) Albums of 2014. 


10. Chromeo- White Women
disco-nouveau:: old leather car interior:: dork-wooing


9. Zola Jesus- Taiga
chicks got pipes:: super-catchy:: solid soph. album


7. Operators- EP1
holy-live-love:: dan boekner:: dark-synth dance tunes


7. Odesza- Summer’s Gone
warm-n-fuzy:: trancelike:: musically accurate album cover


6. Gauntlet Hair- Stills
Depeche Mode meets Wolf Parade by way of Animal Collective 

5. Spoon- They Want my Soul
Thanks for just makin more solidly great tunes guys:: reliable:: just, Spoon.

4. War on Drugs- Lost in the Dream
Classic America :: Petty and Dylan


3. Beirut- The Rip Tide
new to me :: catchy tunes mixed with some real special gems :: all tha harmonies!


TIE 1: Future Islands- Singles
Best new artist :: we drove 650 miles to see these guys :: total whackadoo- with the goods.


TIE 1: Of Montreal-Hissing Fauna Are You the Destroyer
New to me best album of the year::  One of the best albums *ever*:: Smart:: epic.

I think for the coming year I'm most looking forward to new offerings from Panda Bear and Modest Mouse.  We'll see who else decides to drop a new album, and who else I'll discover from the past!  
Check out past lists here: 2013, 2012, 2011

Tuesday, December 16, 2014

Daily Pic | November Edition

Eh, well I'm half a month late here, so I'll keep it simple:

Best Music: Beirut- The Rip Tide, The War on Drugs- Lost in the Dream, Zola Jesus- Taiga

Best Tube Time: Parks & Rec, Manhattan, True Detective (!)

Best new home feature: This chandelier which I made brass 1st with Rub-n-Buff.

Best Electrician, re: above?  KB Electric.  He came and hung that thing the day before Thanksgiving, in the snow, in our near 100-year old home.  

Best goal achieved: Made it back to the gym 12 times... 

Best, best? Successfully hosting my first Thanksgiving.... Complete with Havarti w/Dill and smoked cheddar with crackers to munch on.... then: 13 lb (free!) turkey, traditional stuffing, crock pot mashed potatoes, sauteed fennel with basil and red pepper, butternut squash with sage brown butter, sauteed green beans, cranberry relish with vanilla and clementine, 2 kinds of homemade bread from my in-laws and an apple and pumpkin pie from my parents... plus clementines, grapes, and chocolate mints- as per Car-family tradition.  

Living the Good good.


Friday, October 31, 2014

Daily Pic | October Edition

Warning: This months post sponsored by, UBER-NERDOM. 

What this month lacked in good music it more than made up for with good birding.  Since joining ebird.org I now easily track and record my findings after each outing.  This month’s Highlight Reel would include: A great Blue Heron, Sharp-skinned Hawk, Red-Bellied Woodpeckers & Downies, Titmice in droves, Dark Eyed Junco’s in droves, white-breasted nuthatches (love these guys), a blue-headed vireo(!), a Carolina Wren, Ruby-Crowned kinglets (a very challenging but very satisfying i.d.), …. cedar waxwings, and yellow-rumped warblers….. Sorry to all the lovelies that I consider common like, the cardinals, etc.  Seriously, migration is a very exciting time for bird-nerds like moi.

Believe it or not, I didn’t spend the whole month looking for flying friends.  We spent a lot of time at my sisters and the house is really getting there.  So impressed with all the work they’re doing.  It’s really showing. 

We celebrated a bunch of family birthdays, including my own, and had a fabulous time with each celebration.  I made an amazing sagria recipe perfect for the season, based on the glass I got at Buddakan last month
Combine: Chardonnay, apple cider, a little pineapple juice, vanilla extract, pumpkin pie spice, and vanilla (or in my case Pinnacle Whipped) vodka.  YUM.

I really didn’t listen to anything of note.  I’m not really loving anything recently. Wah!

Uhmmm wuddelse… Well, I’m drawing a blank now! Here we go into the colder months… Eep.  Looking forward to hosting my 1st Thanksgiving this coming month ;)

Monday, October 6, 2014

Daily Pic | September Edition

I think I’m extra late posting this because I knew it was going to be a lot to cover!

September is my favorite month.  Who knows if going into your ‘favorite’ month means that its going to be good, or just that, it lived up to my expectations.  Either way- so much good stuff.

We jaunted up to Portland, ME for a 48 hour concert/lobster roll run and it was perfection.  Future Islands @ the Port City Music Hall was worth every single one of the six hundred and sixty-ish miles.  We had time for lobster rolls and blueberry pie on the coast, and, as if the trip wasn’t great enough I even saw Cedar Waxwings up at the Headlight.  I always hoped that by the time I was an old lady, I’d get so lucky; never expected I’d see them so soon.

We had a rainy bbq where our family & friends all came over and warmed our house.  It was really great to have all our fave ppl around under our roof….

T rallied from his shingles and we celebrated our 2 year anniversary by hitting up AC for a few days.  Comp nights, pool time, Buddakan, Cape May, noodles (for tom, an exceptional cheeseburger)… easy going gambling, free cocktails… good times. 

Hit up Brooklyn for wine & girl time with my bestie, oh, and tons of freelance and... I finally got my Nutley Library Card… woot woot!

Last major highlight: Stumbled on an amazing album from Of Montreal which would have made my month on its own… also, lots of Wolf Parade & Handsome Furs (Operators opened for Future Islands- they were amazing)… If there were others, I’m forgetting now!! 

Now its October.  Another solid month in my book.  I foresee my sisters house taking shape, celebrating the many family birthdays we have, watching what happens to our pseg bill once we turn on our furnace, raking leaves, and getting trick or treaters for the 1st time!

Wednesday, September 3, 2014

Daily Pic | August Edition

Hey!  I'm a few days behind, I know.  Summer is moving in some kind of reverse order.  It's been hotter & more humid these last few days than the bulk of summer...but, its pretty much dark out by 7:30 now, and so we know.... fall's here.

August was a whirlwind month full of birthdays, get-togethers and weddings.  We had the pleasure of hitting up double-decker wedding celebrations at the Madison Hotel.  The first of which, a great friend from way back and her awesome hubs and the 2nd- same place- two weeks later, my sister :)  I can't even say with words how much fun I had.  As always, she was gorgeous... and it was just a rip roarin good time.

My little niece turned one, and is more precious than ever.  I love her to bits.  

The house is good... got the roof done.  One of those anti-climactic jobs that needed to be done.  Finished revamping the dining set (finally), painting the bannister, and even acquired a coffee table! Hoping we can do some more work to the landscaping before the weather turns cold ... a girl can hope.... 

Spent the month listening to, of course, Future Islands, and the new 'Spoon' album was awesome as well. And I guess my recipe of the month would be this one.  Just ask T- he obliged me by eating it 3 nights in a row. 

If I had to sum August up in one stand-out thing though, it would be long nightly walks.  It was such a great month for walking- perfect temps, new neighborhoods to investigate, a new bird discovery, and... just great conversations :)

Here's the grid you've all been waiting for! (ha) Peace August.  You were cooool....

Tuesday, August 5, 2014

Daily Pic | July Edition

July… Helluva month!
We made it to the beach once, had a great time in Philly for mere’s bach, I finished up a bunch of big projects, went to a great BBQ, met new clients but ... but…… the highlight of the month, without a doubt was my awakening to Future Islands.  !!!  I felt like I was going to burst for 3 days straight while I got into all their past albums.  Being extremely disappointed with their tour schedule, we’re roadtrippin to a show of theirs in one of our beloved cities.  CANNOT WAIT. 
The house is doing well too.  We’re pretty much settled in and just really loving it.  :)