"Settle Down" - Kimbra

"Settle Down" - Kimbra

Ever since "Somebody That I Used To Know", I've become more and more interested in Kimbra. I'm drooling for her full-length album to be released in the States (if anyone knows where I can purchase it here, please let me know - it's not on iTunes nor is it on Amazon [booo]), and in the meantime I get to enjoy her 4-track Settle Down EP on repeat. 

The title track sets itself apart with an a cappella intro and a some percussive vocals that maintain throughout the song. It's a cheeky, honest song about wanting to settle down (hence the title, you guys). It almost sounds as if it's sung by a child who thinks she knows what love is, incorporating a bit of "Star Light, Star Bright", though it gets a bit more desperate towards the end and she almost begs her man to stay with her, singing "baby there's no need to run".

To evoke this look I put together a classic, "Mad Men" meets Stepford Wife look. Very demure, nothing too overt or risky, very proper. Almost unsettlingly so. 

Listen to the song here.


"King of the World" - First Aid Kit

King of the World

First Aid Kit has quickly become one of my favorite bands. I'm so amazed by them - they're a Swedish sister duo but their music is so old country you'd think they were direct descendants of the Coal Miner's Daughter herself. This song is the closing number on their debut album The Lion's Roar, and though it was difficult to choose which one to feature, I found myself drawn to this one. I love it's declarations of being nobody's baby, everybody's girl, queen of nothing, king of the world. 

It's all about feeling insecure yet confident at the same time and trying to understand where you fit in. Although the message is somewhat unsure, I still feel that evokes this sense of strength. Like the storyteller is saying, sure, I don't have it figured out yet, but I know that I will and in the meantime I'll do my best. That's why I wanted to pair this with such a strong look.

Those Roberto Cavalli pants are killer, right? Totally undeniable. I wanted to build the ensemble around them, with more metallic accents to allude to the royalty that's wearing it. I also included the soft Clover Canyon top to represent the unknowing - it's a lovely print of the horizon and reminds us that we are a small piece of a huge puzzle. It keeps the look a bit more grounded.

Listen to the song here.


"Manchester" - Kishi Bashi

Not sure if you've heard, but it's going to be 75 degrees this week in Minneapolis. HOHHH MY GEE. Finally. This summer is going to be fantastic - I've got an anniversary vacation coming up, loads of local concerts to go to, Tough Mudder, and Bonnaroo. And that's all before June! Summer is the best. You know what else is the best? This song. I think I found my song of the summer - and it's only March!
This is yet another "instant love" songs. I think I'm starting to understand the formula I need for me to feel an attachment to a song. It usually involves at least one of the following: hopeless and/or beautiful declarations of love; an infectious melody that builds on itself with grand instrumentation; the ability to spark the desire for me to stand up and twirl around until the song is over. Kishi Bashi has included all of these qualities in "Manchester".
The song begins with a dreamy string and percussion sound and builds into the chorus, when Kishi Bashi sings "Oh, hello/will you be mine?/I haven't felt this alive in a long time". And what makes one feel more alive than sporting some high waisted geometric printed shorts and a cutout blouse? P.S. - "Oh, hello" is one of my favorite ways to begin any story, conversation, anything.
Please listen to the song here (along with other tracks from his Room For Dream EP).


"Skinny Love" - Birdy

Skinny Love

Oh my, it's been awhile, hasn't it? Let me explain: I've been traveling for work, the end (good explanation). 
To be honest, I've also been suffering from a bit of writer's block. I've been collecting all these gorgeous and unique pieces to put some new looks together and struggling a bit to find the music to match. So really I've been spending most of my time combing through Spotify to find some more songs to inspire me. 

I love Bon Iver. He's become a bit more of a big deal of late, what with the two Grammys and all, and I am happy to have listened to his music prior to his nominations & wins. I can't claim to be a true fan from the beginning, however - my boyfriend likes to remind me that he saw Bon Iver in 2007 at Pitchfork before For Emma, Forever Ago even came out (yes, I am dating a hipster, but a mild one, I assure you) - and I must confess that when someone first recommended him to me I thought they were saying "Boney Bear", but I like to believe that my fandom has made up for lost time. I had the opportunity to see him live at the Orpheum this past fall, and it was one of the best shows I've ever seen. 

I want to do his latest album justice, but it's taking me some time to decipher the lyrics. So for this post I'm cheating a bit and posting a cover of a Bon Iver song (my unwritten rule is to not duplicate artists as I post; this way I can still post from his sophomore album. Hooray for tricking the system that I created and has no real consequence if I break!). I discovered this song on Spotify (yikes, product placement much?) and it really is a gorgeous cover. I hadn't known anything about Birdy until tonight - my, my, this young lady is talented. She's 16 (!!) and released this cover when she was 15. She simplifies Justin Vernon's song even further, complementing her truly lovely voice with piano. 

The song itself is just heartbreaking, much like the album from whence it came. It's about a relationship that is failing/has failed, and the longing for it to last. This ensemble attempts to evoke that longing, with delicate details that allude to the wearer's fragile emotions, as well as some more rugged notes to represent the wearers jaded views coming out of the experience. 

Listen to the song here.