BSR Beats: Play It Again, Sam

Jacob Derwin

We’ve all had those moments when we hear a song for the first time and proceed to click the replay button until our fingers are bruised. If even one of these songs has that effect on you, I shall feel accomplished. Enjoy!


“Architects & Engineers” – Guster

The Top 40 has proven time and again how difficult it is to strike a balance between “catchy” and “good.” Guster, on the other hand, seems always able to get their music stuck in your head without sacrificing any of its musical quality. “Architects and Engineers” is a prime example of this. They are masters of the, “it ended too soon” song.


“Huey Newton” – St. Vincent

“Huey Newton” is probably my favorite song off of the new St. Vincent album. It immediately pulls you in with a hypnotic synth riff and Annie Clark’s delicate vocals. And then – BOOM! The whole song is flipped on its head as the light keyboard groove transitions into a guitar jam; it’s heavy enough to make your head bob, yet mellow enough to keep you in your trance.


“Movement and Location” – Punch Brothers

Many would consider Punch Brothers a folk band based off of their instrumental composition: mandolin, acoustic guitar, banjo, violin and bass. Yet, without the support of a drum kit or synthesizer, Punch Brothers transcends the bluegrass realm into a style all their own, simply by their skillful playing. I listened to this track at least 10 times in a row as I tried to figure out how they managed to put it together at all.


“Code Monkey” – Jonathan Coulton

Jonathan Coulton is one of the most clever and creative songwriters in music, and “Code Monkey” is his anthem. A semi-biographical song, the lyrics to “Code Monkey” tell the tale of a cubicle-dwelling code writer as he painstakingly persists through the day only so he can get a glance of his love interest – the front desk secretary. Not only is it a beautiful rock song worth listening to a few times, it’s the lyrics that pull you back over and over. Also, it’s written in “monkey-speak.” You’ll have to listen to find out what that means.


“Brooklyn” – Satellite

After collaborating with artists like Rivers Cuomo and Joe Cocker, Steven McMorran decided to start his own project. While the debut album wasn’t a perfect release, the track, “Brooklyn,” quickly stood out. Every piece of this song, from the slide guitar intro to the chorus’ striking harmonies, is gorgeous. If you appreciate melodic rock music, you’ll be listening to this tune on repeat.

Playlist by Jacob Derwin, Program Director. Visit Black Squirrel Radio at