Photo by Taylor Stout

What We Are Listening To: Light Jacket Weather

songs for stomping on crunchy leaves and wearing earth-toned pants.

By Lily Crandall & The music team


Fall is here, which means it’s time to dig out the light jackets from the depths of your closet and turn on the heat lamps again in the outdoor dining areas of restaurants.

These are the songs we listen to while stomping on crunchy leaves and wearing earth-toned pants.

Listen to the playlist here.

Lily is listening to

Funeral - Arcade Fire 

I listened to this album incessantly during the fall of 2016 and thus it will forever be linked to crunchy leaves, the start of the school year, and the unearthing of light jackets from under my bed.

Flaws - Bombay Bicycle Club 

There’s something about an entirely acoustic album from an indie pop/rock band that says, “Hey, chill out. Read a book in a park, drink hot apple cider, take a breath.” This album was gifted to me by a friend a few years older who I thought was incredibly cool, and it became holy to me as a result.

Taylor is listening to

“For Now” - Zsela

Zsela’s voice is boundless and smooth and “For Now” is a full-bodied melody to get lost in. She sings, “The trees are dying prettier than we do,” underscoring a doomed love story with the vivid, bittersweet colors of fall.

“The Start of Something” - Voxtrot

Sometimes when I want to make myself sentimental I watch a Youtube video of Voxtrot performing this song at their last-ever concert in 2010. It’s like that cliche that endings are just beginnings in disguise or whatever. Somehow the air getting colder always fills me with fresh promise, and this song makes me feel crushed and hopeful at once.

“Who Knows Where the Time Goes - Live” - Nina Simone

Not to be dramatic but I am convinced this is one of the most special pieces of recorded sound in existence.

Miguel is listening to

“I Tried” - Bone Thugs-N-Harmony, Akon 

I heard someone blasting this out of their window a few weeks ago and it transported me to 5th grade and my past obsession with all things Akon. This song is reckoning and growth—don’t be surprised if you catch yourself reflecting while grooving.

“When Everything Was New” - Flume

Flume was the backbone of my EDM discovery journey in high school. Returning to this song feels right for the changing season.

“Blue Sky and Yellow Sunflower” - Susumu Yakota

Life has been moving at lightning speed. That’s normal for New York City I guess (gotta pay rent/make it worth it/etc.), but it’s been going on for a while and I’m crossing my fingers daily that my body can take it. This song is reassurance.

Adam is listening to

“We Go On Walks” - Petey

Growing up in Buffalo, half of the year is jacket weather. You also go on walks everywhere with your closest friends because that’s all you have to do. You can often run out of things to do and talk about. I miss it, but I am also glad I’m past it. This song is for all those days crunching the leaves below your feet and chatting on about things you won’t remember.

“Sugar We’re Goin Down” - Fall Out Boy

I’ve been listening this on repeat all year. I don’t need to tell you how great it is—you know. Sure, it’s their most popular song. Sure, it’s overplayed. But so what? Yes, I’m going to play it again. Yes, I’m going to scream it at the top of my lungs in my best faux Pat Stump voice. It’s that song for the beginning of the school year when you’re young and angst infects your brain. Don’t act like you’re over this song because you’re not and here’s a reminder in case you forgot.

“Jungleland” - Bruce Springsteen

I miss New York. Respect to the California people I know, but I’ve got New York State in my blood. It’s where I belong and I’ve discovered it more now that I’ve been away. Bruce is famously not from New York, but the way he writes a song about the city can bring a tear to your eye. The best Bruce songs have that roller coaster ride of rampaging heartland rock dropping into a sweet soft scene and then going back again. This story reminds me of all those 1 AM subway rides, hikes down 3rd Avenue, and endangered dollar slice complete with a sprinkle of red pepper and left-out parm. I’ll be back in the Jungleland soon.

Madeleine is listening to

On Your Own Love Again - Jessica Pratt 

The ultimate witchy lullaby record. Jessica Pratt is magic—somehow this album breathed creative life back into me last year during lockdown. It makes me feel like I’m a fairy dancing in the woods at midnight. It’s one of my favorite albums ever.

“High” - Feeder

“I’M GOIN OUT FOR A WHILE / SO I CAN GET HIGH WITH MY FRIENDS.” This is a high school anthem for screaming in the car with the windows down. It feels like autumn and growing pains. He even sings about being “surrounded by colored leaves on the ground.” I mean.

“There’s More to Life Than This - Live Version” - Björk

I love when Björk yells. “There’s MOoOoOoRE to LIFE THAN THIS.” Anthems only this fall. This is also a really good song to dance to.

Tessa is listening to

“Harvest Moon” - Neil Young

How fitting that this is my go-to fall song. “Harvest Moon” reminds me of hiking in Vermont, fleece-lined flannels, and leftover crumbs of farmers’ market bread.

“Loud Pipes” - Ratatat

“Loud Pipes” is for those moody, broody, cooler days when I just need some solitude. It’s an easy song to get lost in, as Ratatat leans into cool electronica guitar riffs and effortless repetition.

“Purple Hat” - Sofi Tukker

As the weather drops, so do the windows. Joyriding around town with friends, blasting “Purple Hat,” hair blowing in the crisp October air—that’s my favorite light jacket weather activity.

Cath is listening to

“Wichita Lineman” - Glen Campbell 

I always find a deep comfort in Glen Campbell’s voice and the cinematic strings in this single. It’s the perfect companion for driving through fall’s first foliage in your jacket that’s eager to be worn.

“Japanese Candy” - Brutus VII

“Then you called me and showed me the grime in your teeth / Then you called me and showed me your Japanese candy”. A bizarrely ethereal love song with vulnerable lyrics that have haunted me since my first listen during the fall of 2018.

“Downtown” - Majical Cloudz

This album is celebrating its 6th birthday on October 16th, and every time I listen to this single, it takes me back to the album’s release when I was working at a record store in Boston. I played it for someone I was in love with at the time and they hated it, but it still sticks with me as an autumnal hymn dedicated to holding hands and the innocent affections of new love.

Emory is listening to

“Your Ghost” - Angela Sclafani 

“And I wanna know, wanna know, wanna know / Who is afraid the most?” The ultimate spook is an ex that you still feel in every fiber of New York City. I especially love the slow build of violins at the end, which sounds like wind whipping up leaves on the ground.

“Autumn in New York” - Ella Fitzgerald & Louis Armstrong

The power duet of all power duets presents: autumn. This song feels sweepy, like brushstrokes in a painting of the city in September. Listen to it on a crisp morning with the window slightly cracked.

“All Too Well” - Taylor Swift

My favorite Taylor Swift song of all time. Autumn leaves, meeting the parents, and the devastating feeling of nostalgia. The perfect fall heartbreak ballad.