Spotify Discover playlists are the secret best playlists generated for humans today. They do two things, simultaneously, that few other programs do well: introduce you to songs and artists you like but had never actually heard before, based on very intense and specific information you've fed them over the course of your extensive listenings. And, maybe more important, they don't include Bill Withers's "Ain't No Sunshine When She's Gone" unless it's appropriate. It's a nearly unattainable combination anywhere else.
Another thing Discover playlists do is serve as an abstract audio documentation of where you were generally at in life last week. A passive-aggressive nudge that says, "hey, you know there are other good alt-country artists besides Ryan Adams." It would be annoying if it weren't right so much of the time. So here's this week's What Spotify Tells Us We Like, a psychomusical analysis of our own relationships to the increasingly sentient algorithms of the world's largest streaming music operation:
Kady Ruth Ashcraft
This week's playlist feels quintessentially March in that it's a little sleepy and very pleasant, but quite as amped as I need it to be. Mondays are a tough day to listen to lots of dainty acoustic folk because it doesn't encourage you to really jump out of bed and seize the week. This is also the sixth time Spotify has put a cover of "Blues Run The Game" on my Discover Weekly and I don't mind. I really like that song.
Interesting. Spotify hits on all genres this week, the common thread seemingly being songs to depress me on a Monday morning—with some interesting covers of songs I've listened to a thousand times peppered in. Special nod to Cold War Kids' "Love on the Brain" cover, and the angel voice that belongs to Moses Sumney.
If I could have the first 43 seconds of “Walking in Place” by Perpetual Groove in my head at all times, day and night, I think I’d be that much closer to achieving nirvana. Unfortunately, the front man for this Savannah-based “Southern rock, funk, jazzy improvisation, indie rock and synth loop” band decided to start singing shortly thereafter, at which point my dreams were dashed by a sound reminiscent of early Widespread Panic, earlier Phish and present-day boredom. Still, I’m grateful for the suggestion. They’re a jam band after all, so I’m hoping to find some more mellow gold in them thar hills. Which reminds me, I need to start listening to more ‘90s Beck. (Mellow Gold? Anyone? Forget it.)
Good by Spotify for putting Marvin Gaye's 'Is That Enough' back on my radar, and for further reminding me that the product of its sample is still very much a certified, hall of fame banger.
Dearest Spotify, thank you for today's offering of Fiona Apple, Lana Del Rey, Banks, Sia, Kimbra, and Kate Nash. Filing this playlist under, "My Ex Just Got Engaged and EVERYTHING IS FINE."
Once again, I know almost no one on this list, which is actually a trend I’m cool with. Hard to pinpoint where Spotify thinks I’m at in my life with songs like, “Autodomesticated Animal”, “Thirty Years Old”, and “Time Served”. I can’t explain it, but I feel like this list is attacking me.
If my Discover Weekly was a fortune cookie, I'd imagine it'd say something like "Be ready for something new is about to come into your life," what with Julian Casablancas's "I'll Try Anything Once" (love this song), Elliot Smith's "Rose Parade" and Talking Heads's "Uh-Oh, Love Comes to Town"--which is oddly foreboding?
I look like pretty much the coolest guy on Earth this week. According to me.