When you load up Spotify, a great big chunk of the time you can’t think what to play, right? You default back to your old favourites, those albums and songs you played on repeat when you first discovered you could make them yours.
This isn’t about guilty pleasures; it’s about those songs you’ll still be listening to when you’re old and in your rocking chair. So, enter Teenage Kicks – a playlist series that sees bands running through the music they listened to in their formative years.
Next up, Palehound.
St Vincent – Cheerleader
I was so obsessed with this song that I named my high school band Cheerleader. I also had “I don’t wanna be a cheerleader no more” as my senior yearbook quote. This whole album, ‘Strange Mercy’, changed my life.
Deerhoof – Scream Team
This song is off Deerhoof’s album ‘The Runner’s Four’, which is a complete masterpiece. This song, in particular, was so exciting to me because of the way they played the guitar melodies along with the vocals. I spent a whole week just learning all the guitar parts on this record front-to-back the summer after my junior year of high school.
Janelle Monae – Mushrooms & Roses
This was the first Janelle Monae song I ever heard, and it turned me into an instant super fan. My cousin Brian played it for me as we were hotboxing his car in a movie theatre parking lot. I made him play it again as soon as it was over. I’ll never forget that moment.
Yeah Yeah Yeahs – Modern Romance
My high school best friend Max and I used to put on ‘Fever To Tell’ in his bedroom and just lay on the floor and listen to it in silence from front to back. This record is so important to me. ‘Modern Romance’ was the standout track for me because of the simplicity and the way it tugged at my soul. This was also “our song” with my first real gay crush, so it holds a special place in my heart for that reason.
Gorillaz ft. Gruff Rhys, De La Soul – Superfast Jellyfish
I could literally listen to this song every single day, and it would still hit so hard every single time. One of my favourite songs/albums of all time in the sense that it is timeless and always sounds fresh. I used to drive around aimlessly listening to this album on the CD I burned of it. I would literally invite friends to hang out with me that way- just driving and listening to ‘Plastic Beach’.
The Breeders – Oh!
Kim Deal is my ultimate hero; this is no secret to anybody. She’s so known for heavy rock songs with The Breeders and Pixies that when I heard this song, it totally blew my mind. It’s mellow for her but also incredibly raw and powerful. The moment that really sold this song for me was her voice crack towards the end. I still have a hard time finding vocals that make me feel that way.
Beyonce – Countdown
I am a huge Beyonce fan, so it was hard to pick just one song for her. However, ‘Countdown’ is just such a banger and is the one that stood out to me for its sheer weirdness. It is SUCH a bop and also SO strange and freaky. I just had to look up how long this song is cuz it always feels so short, but it’s actually three and a half minutes?? That’s shocking.
Elliott Smith – Ballad Of Big Nothing
This is one of the most influential songs to me. This song changed how I thought about songwriting. To write a song like this is a goal that I still don’t feel I’ve hit. I will cry to and chase the high of this song until I die.
Taken from the August 2023 issue of Upset. Palehound’s album ‘Eye On The Bat’ is out now.