paden carter - ennui on wednesday
Ennui on Wednesday Listen

Ennui on Wednesday: Paden Carter

Hello everyone, my name is Paden Carter. I attended BYU-Idaho and graduated in Dec 2017 with a major in psychology. I play music in a band called vita nihil. I’ve known Jordan, the owner of The Ennui Project, for about three years now. I feel very fortunate to know someone as industrious and talented as he is. When he asked for volunteer writers for The Ennui Project, I took the opportunity to write about some of my favorite songs from the past. I could probably put a playlist together of a hundred songs, but this will work for the purpose of this piece. I hope you enjoy the songs I’ve chosen.

Abandoned Pools – “Tighter Noose”

The experimental and alternative nature of this music was super engaging to me as a kid. It taught me that transition from clean tone to mid-gain distortion is an effective tool for contrast. It taught me that heavy half-time drum beats and tremolo picking on guitar are an amazing spectacle. I learned that it’s okay to put strings in a rock song. The emotional nature of the lyrics fit the instrumentation quite well.

Coldplay – “Strawberry Swing”

The whole record this single is on (Viva la Vida) was really valuable to me as a kid. I learned what effect presentation of imagery looks like from this record. This was one of the first songs I listened to that I said to myself, “Oh, this is alternative rock.” Alternative rock is a pretty diverse genre by itself, and I think this song illustrates that. The clean tone spacey guitars combined with a solid downbeat-style drum beat really illustrates that good music can be simple too.

The Decemberists – “Here I Dreamt I Was an Architect”

The storytelling nature of this music was a very new thing for me as an adolescent. I thought it was cool to listen to the stories on this record. The Decemberists were my first experience with indie folk. Strange lyrics lines like, “Here in Spain I am a Spaniard / I will be buried with marionettes” really brought me into a world of profound and peculiar lyric writing.

mewithoutYou – “In a Sweater Poorly Knit”

The whole record this single is on (Brother, Sister) has been very good to me in rough times in my life. I discovered this record during my first experience with seasonal depression in the winter of 2009. The vocalist of this band (Aaron Weiss) uses a peculiar lyric writing technique by combining stories from The Bible with existential philosophy. I used to sing this song when I felt down and still do on occasion.

Placebo – “Special Needs”

When I was a kid I became very interested in indie music, if the reader hasn’t observed by this point in this piece. Placebo was one of the bands I gravitated toward because they were strange. The vocalist had that strange but distinct high and nasally mid-2000s voice. They did strange things with their music like use piano and delay. This song is one of the most typical Placebo songs – unique and strange but also catchy and jammy.


Remember to follow The Ennui Project on Instagram. Also, check back here for future Ennui on Wednesday playlists curated by fellow artists and musicians.


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