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Playing Summer to the Beat

written by: on June 25, 2013

Yes, we know it’s hot outside, but summer music can be cooool. Whether you want to beat the heat by singing along beside a campfire or lounging on the beach, there’s a song for you. (Specifically, nine of them.) So throw on your favorite concert tee and plug in your headphones! Summertime is here.

“Let’s Go Surfing” – The Drums

From the relentless thrill of the lead guitar to the kinetic bounce of the vocals, this cheery song by The Drums embodies the carefree attitude of the summer months. It may be the warmth or the decreasing need for clothing, but summer puts everyone in a good mood. Did we mention there’s a background whistler in the song? Well, yeah. Whether you love to surf, hate to surf, know how to or can surf, you’ll want to by the end of this three-minute ditty.

“Airplanes” – Local Natives

At the risk of sounding pretentious—which may sound pretentious, we know—we’ve loved Local Natives since Gorilla Manor first made waves in early 2010. With a diverse catalog, musical prowess (check out their impressive Talking Heads cover “Warning Sign”), and an unmistakable sound, they’re a band to get excited about. In “Airplanes,” the harmonies between leads Taylor Rice and Kelsey Ayer dance on top of bouncy piano. It’s hard to tell from the cheery vocals that the song is actually a heartbreak ballad. You know, the kind for liberating summer drives.

“Turn Off this Song and Go Outside” – The Lonely Forest

We can’t count how many times we’ve been scolded by parents to “turn off the TV and go outside,” so the fact that there is now a song bearing the same message is a welcomed musical discovery. Needless to say, this song is all we need to get our freshly sunburnt bodies outside.

“Fever” – Maps & Atlases

It’s hard to tell if we’re still riding the adrenaline high from this Chicago quartet’s release party at Metro, or if it’s the lead singer’s uncanny resemblance to Jesus Christ that has us hooked, but damn, these vocals. Dipped in reggae, splashed with alternative rock, and boasting an electric edge, it’s hard to say no to Maps & Atlases.

“Spies Spies Spies” – The Naked & Famous

This dance ballad draws from, of all things, Nine Inch Nails. It’s hard to imagine industrial music as a launch point for a band of New Zealand rockers, but The Naked & Famous know what they’re doing.

“Janglin” – Edward Sharpe & The Magnetic Zeroes

Ed Sharpe (or as diehard fans know him, Alexander) and nine of his fellow hippie folksters recently made a return to the music scene with their dutifully polished sophomore outing, Here. Talented as they are, it’s the flowery Woodstock jingles that continue to resonate. “Janglin,” arguably the most unrestrained cut from debut Up From Below, is a treasure. Go on, we dare you to listen and not sing along.

“My Old Ways” – Dr. Dog

Dr. Dog = The Beatles? OK, maybe we’re going a little overboard with that comparison, but face it—Dr. Dog are prolific and consistently innovative. “My Old Ways” feels warm and immaculate; a golden touch from Midas himself.

“Dear Mr. President” – Fitz & The Tantrums

It’s like clockwork: throw on a Fitz track, and we will begin to make fools of ourselves. And isn’t that what summer is all about? No summer day is complete without some shameless dancing and off-key singalongs, and have exactly what it takes to find the right mood music for warm-weathered embarrassment.