By: Meera Eragoda, Arts & Culture Editor
All of the Monday Music for the Summer 2020 semester is now be available on The Peak’s Spotify Playlist, Monday Music Summer 2020. Don’t forget to follow thepeaksfu on Spotify to listen more easily!
Sometimes it feels as if most of the songs out there are about love, heartbreak, or relationships in general. So often songs are trying to capture a specific experience or feeling. Now don’t get me wrong — I do love songs like this. But occasionally it feels refreshing to stumble across a song that is a little quirky and reflects more of a traditional story format. Bonus if they happen to be about adventures of real or fantastical critters. If you’re also a fan of fantasy or of anthropomorphized animals, look no further than these songs to take you along on an adventure.
“Dirty Paws” — Of Monsters and Men
This is a classic. Of Monsters and Men (OMAM) is an Icelandic indie/folk/pop band whose songs generally have lyrics that are anything but predictable — and “Dirty Paws” is no different. This song tells a story of a war between the birds and the bees. The lyrics, “The bees had declared a war, the sky wasn’t big enough for them all. The birds they got help from below, from dirty paws and the creatures of snow” literally sets out the premise. Many people believe that this song is about WWII, but OMAM have never confirmed or denied this, so feel free to interpret it literally or allegorically. I would also recommend watching the music video of this (and all OMAM videos if I’m being honest). It’s essentially a horned sasquatch striding through the snow, and who doesn’t need that in their life?
“Sparrow” — Simon and Garfunkel
I’ve recently dug deep into the Simon and Garfunkel catalogue and discovered that they have many songs that don’t get the credit they deserve. Of course, their most popular songs such as “Mrs. Robinson” and “The Sound of Silence” are great, but even their lesser-known songs confirm that this folk-rock duo was definitely talented. “Sparrow” is a sad song about a sparrow who’s journeyed far and is in desperate need of food and rest. The lyrics, “Who will love a little sparrow?” are answered with callous no’s by an oak tree and a swan. The story of the sparrow doesn’t have a happy ending, but the song is beautiful and eventually the earth comes through, though only after the sparrow passes away. Hopefully a song to listen to remember to take care of all the critters roaming the earth.
“The Gnome” — Pink Floyd
Speaking of lesser-known works of famous musicians, I think this falls in that category. This Pink Floyd song about “a gnome named Grimble Crumble” who “wore a scarlet tunic, a blue green hood, it looked quite good” is, to me, the perfect level of quirk. “The Gnome” is a delight of a song about the simple life of a simple gnome. Does it sound like a song that may have been written while taking a “trip”? Maybe.
“At the Zoo” — Simon and Garfunkel
According to the character, Rob, from High Fidelity, you should never include more than one song from the same artist on a playlist, but what can I say? I’m a rulebreaker, I guess? Listen to this if you want an absolutely slanderous account of various animals at a zoo. I say this because the lyrics include the line, “The elephants are kindly but they’re dumb,” which could not be more preposterous — to be clear, because they’re smart, not because they’re mean. But still listen, because this song attributes various traits to different animals in a hilarious way.