Time for my monthly rundown of what I’m into at the moment.
Augustines by Augustines. In my constant pursuit of great music, I came across this album in late February via an eMusic recommendation. Little did I know how quickly I would fall in love with it. Artistically, Augustines is sort of a cross between Gaslight Anthem and Coldplay: a bit gritty, but arena-ready. With a 2012 debut album under their belt, the band tapped producer Peter Katis (of Boxer and Alligator fame) to helm a follow-up chock full of killer hooks and huge vocals. Highlights include “Weary Eyes”, “Now We Are Free”, “Cruel City”, “The Avenue”, and the song that is destined to go down as my favorite of 2014, “Walkabout”, a jarringly honest rumination on identity, prayer, and the hope of eternity. A must listen.
Bicycling. Last month, I wrote about my desire to run more. I was doing pretty well until the first week of March, which was when Sunny and I decided to purchase bikes so we could go riding with the kids through the neighborhood. And with the spring weather we’ve had, we’ve really enjoyed it. In fact, I biked nearly 60 miles in March alone! I’ve been using the RunTastic app to keep track of my riding. I haven’t given up the desire to run more often, but it’s nice to mix a little bike-riding in as well.
- MLB Opening Day. I love this time of year. Little League baseball is in full swing. My fantasy baseball draft was just a few weeks ago. March Madness is always exciting. And I’ve even gotten into the Masters the last few years. But nothing can compare to the opening of the Major League Baseball season. After a long offseason, there’s nothing quite like it. Sunny and I have been planning a major baseball trip this summer; I’ll write more about that later.
- The Tonight Show with Jimmy Fallon. This has become a staple for us each night. Fallon is simply hilarious. I’m glad to say we were on the Jimmy bandwagon long before he landed the Tonight Show gig. But it’s great to be able to watch him an hour earlier now. Suddenly the Tonight Show is relevant again!
Johnny Cash’s “lost” album. Back in the 80s, this album was put on the shelf when Cash’s record label inexplicably dropped him. Remastered with the help of some backing vocals and new studio players, “Out Among the Stars” was released last week. Of course, I’m a fan, so I’d listen to an album of Cash reading the Encyclopedia Brittanica. As it stands, the album retains it’s 80s country feel, giving it a certain time-capsule effect. Standout tracks include “I’m Movin’ On” (a duet with Waylon), “Don’t You Think It’s Come Our Time” (a duet with June Carter Cash), and the haunting “She Used to Love Me a Lot.” New Cash music…you know I’m good with that.