I had my first university seminar of my Master’s degree yesterday, and we spent a good amount of time discussing inspiration – what inspires us, how we inspire others, and how we seek out inspiration. I avoided mentioning that inspiration normally finds me at its most poetically potent after a drink or five, so instead turned to music – speaking about jazz and other genres which make me feel particularly creative. Bukowski used to use classical music; I tend to use instrumental music also. Normally I get distracted by songs with lyrics, and had conversations of similar theme with a former housemate who worked in scriptwriting. He could only write using experimental hip-hop beats, something I found didn’t really work for myself. I find that instrumental music is great if I’m already in a creative mindset. Sometimes though, I need a nudge in the right direction.
Released: 2014 Label: Tiny Engines
Variant: 2nd press /125 Purchased from: Tiny Engines
I could’ve mentioned that I like to write after listening to a particular track on Boston four-piece Somos’ debut LP Temple of Plenty. Though definitely not an instrumental record, it distracts me to a lesser degree than most of my collection and inspires me all the same. It’s an easy, pleasant listen of near-perfect indie-rock, released in 2014 by the exemplary Tiny Engines label. Those who’ve heard it will likely agree about the records charming character – infectious and melodic, very easy to like. Across its twenty-eight minute runtime, it doesn’t do a whole lot wrong. It’s just, good. It also features one of my favorite songs of recent years -third track Dead Wrong – which I referred to at the start of this paragraph. Listening to that song, for whatever reason, makes me want to create, makes me want to write. Maybe it’s the references to the nine-to-five lifestyle I so keenly want to avoid. Maybe it’s the melody and tight rhymes, It’s a song about work, about the monotony of the daily grind, and it makes me reflect on the (thankfully) short period I spent occupied by that routine. It was a routine I found creatively stifling, and Somos get that; there’s something about their song that makes me want to write as I wasn’t able to during that time. Some of my better (?) works have stemmed from sessions sparked by a run-through of Temple of Plenty. If I begin with Dead Wrong, I make sure that the rest of the record is given chance as well – it’s a great lesson from a band I still find to be underrated despite their quality. Fun fact: it was my third favorite record of 2014.
This thing is also pretty as hell.