This weekend a friend recommended Taken by Trees to me. The solo project of Victoria Bergsman, formerly of the Concretes, whom I must admit I am ignorant of, other than having heard their name banded about a few times, Taken by Trees are subtle, lilting, and entirely enchanting. Combining the other worldliness of Natasha Khan with rays of sunshine and folk guitars, this is music to lift your spirits and indulge your inner Romantic poet to on a cold November evening. Even better, it is available on the wonderful Drowned in Sound to stream for free: http://drownedinsound.com/news/4137777-listen--exclusive-dis-stream-for-taken-by-trees-album-east-of-eden
Taken by Trees' official website is http://www.takenbytrees.com/ - worth a visit just for the beautiful photograph used as background, which must insipire a desire to see the world and be amazed even in those with less of a predilection for travel than me.
Which brings me on to my second recommendation for the world at large: Where's Cool.
I am biased, being a major contributor and content editor, but this really is one of the best travel websites out their for young, hip travellers on a budget. If you're looking for the coolest, cheapest, most interesting, unusual or cutting edge places to go, things to see an bars to drink in in major western cities, then www.wherescool.com is the site for you. All my favourite places are there, as well as those of a few thousand other contributors. If you disagree or think something is missing, you can join up and easily add it yourself. The layout and graphics are pretty sweet too - and whilst a lot of the world isn't covered yet, it's still early days, and the US and much of Europe is chock full of awesome spots for everyone to enjoy.