Tuesday, January 23, 2007

Mixtape, Sir?

Howdy y'all!

Like I said, this week is all about the mixtapes. I've got four to upload over the course of the week, two volumes in two parts each, and as I've not put one together for a while, you can bet your life that each and every one of them is all killer, no filler. This first one is as eclectic as usual, starting off a little on the indie side, before taking a strange turn into a funky dancefloor mess. Enjoy!


  1. Panda Bear - Bro's (Most bands say that they're influenced by The Beach Boys and, more specifically, Brian Wilson, doubly so in today's musical climate, now that the premier musical savant is enjoying another day in the sun. Whereas most acts take what Wilson did in his heyday (Pet Sounds, Smile) as an unfuckwithable blueprint, Animal Collective's Panda Bear picks up the baton Wilson dropped in his sandpit. In stretching out close harmonies and multiple layers of pleasing sonics and psychedelic otherworldliness, he gets closer to the spirit of Wilson without ripping him off than anyone else has come.)
  2. Gruff Rhys - Candylion (A song that, at first, sounds disarmingly twee, considering the muscular psychedelia that we're used to from Gruff and friends, unfurls, on further listens to reveal itself to be one of the best straight-up pop songs that he's ever written and, as SFA fans will agree, he's wrote some corkers in the past.)
  3. Field Music - Tones Of Town (Fractured, fragmented symphonic pop from Sunderland's finest, who are masters of this kind of thing. No matter how often you feel that the different song strands and awkward time signatures are going to get away from them, they always rein it back in. Despite all the wilful changing up that they do, the masterful, craftsman's touch always prevails.)
  4. Matt & Kim - It's A Fact (Printed Stained) (New York-based duo (go figure) Matt & Kim tease and eke more nuance out of junk-shop synth and clattering drums than most bands could from a whole orchestra. I guess that the reductivism they proffer acts as a microcosm of POP music, as 'It's A Fact', along with the rest of their oeuvre is as joyous and freewheeling as music gets.)
  5. Jonathan Fire*Eater - No Love Like That (Now that Stewart Lupton is starting to reemerge back into the spotlight as frontman in The Child Ballads, it would be a good time to revisit his original band of not-so-merry, smack-powered garage revivalists, most of whom went on to form The Walkmen. This track, from their one-and-only full-length, Wolf Songs For Lambs stands up pretty darned well when measured against today's young turks, as it's a deft exercise in restrained chaos, always on the verge of falling apart, yet with its eyes fixed dead on the finish line. Elegantly wasted.)
  6. Jamie T - Pacemaker (Jamie's garbled, acquired taste of a singing voice is at its most clear on this cut from Panic Prevention, but it's the dextrous bassline that keeps drawing me back. The low-end hook goes from high and clipped to deep and stretched in the space of a second, over and over, pretty much all the way through 'Pacemaker'. Go on my son, my son!)
  7. The Earlies - Burn The Liars (Texas/Chorlton's The Earlies have gone for a more spacey, groove-driven sound on their new album, The Enemy Chorus and this is one of the more successful songs in that ilk. A heavy, piano-driven, metronomic motorik pins the song and anchors the vocal, stopping it from leaving the atmosphere.)
  8. Talking Heads - The Great Curve (The point where TH's fascination with afro-funk on Remain In Light came to a head, this is pure ecstasy. I've listened to that album so many times and taken this for granted, amongst the more obviously crowdpleasing likes of 'Once In A Lifetime', 'Crosseyed And Painless' and 'Born Under Punches', but 'The Great Curve' is probably among the best things they ever recorded, with all the overlapping vocals and Adrian Belew's brilliantly abstract riffing dovetailing into controlled pandemonium. Awe-inspiring.)
  9. !!! - Must Be The Moon (You can never accuse !!! of being subtle. Metaphor will not do when you can just call it how it is and the sledgehammer funk of 'Must Be The Moon' is !!!'s manifesto writ large. The relentless, monotonous, on the downbeat pulse that rules this track is pretty mesmeric, rendering whatever Nic Offer is carping on about in his best Anthony Kiedis-like white rap (a white rap that is a lot more instinctual than Kiedis' nonesensical cadences) neither here nor there. It's something about lunar forces conspiring against you getting laid, but the meta-sexual throb of the beat could fool you into thinking that somewhere within the soupy, multi-textured production, someone's getting their oats.)
  10. 120 Days - Come Out (Come Down, Fade Out, Be Gone) (Mental Overdrive Remix) (Mental Overdrive (aka Frost's Per Martinsen) takes the hypnotic spacekrautelectrorock of the original and throws in the kitchen sink without forsaking the baby for the bath water, to mix a couple of metaphors. The great thing about this epic re-rub though is that, even though it barely makes any sense beyond the incessant groove, M.O. amps up the tension with every eight bars or so, assuring that it culminates in a throbbing, careering mess. Nice work.)
  11. Klaxons - Golden Skans (Erol Alkan's Ekstra Spektral Dub) (In an act of knowing perversion, Alkan takes Klaxons as close to rave as they've ever been; a place where day-glo clothing means nothing if your mind ain't in the right zone. What makes this dub so damn right, rather than tired water-treading (something that would be so easy for Alkan to lapse into at this point in his career) is that Erol brings the original's tender, ethereal melody into play at just the right point, making it less an exercise in showing the pretenders what rave really is and more of a useful nudge in the right direction.)
  12. Fuckpony - Hot Slave (This is acid. By that, I mean the stuff that pumps through H.R. Giger's Alien's veins, as opposed to DJ Pierre. Thick, nasty, sludgy and barely coherent, this doesn't so much demand your attention as draw your eye towards its resting place, in the corner, making unspeakable gestures towards the female staff. Just don't make eye contact, okay?)
  13. Kris Menace feat. Fred Falke - Fairlight (The beauty of this little pearler is that you can so tell just what elements were brought to the table by Kris Menace and what stemmed from the brain of Alan Braxe's best bud. The overwrought, fretwork abusing guitar shredding is pure Falke, while the ominous, Moroder-esque arpeggios are definitely the work of Mr Menace. A match made in disco heaven.)
  14. The League Unlimited Orchestra - Things That Dreams Are Made Of (Can I just say, for the record, that I picked up on this before The Glimmers stuck it on their Fabric mix? Not that there's any points-scoring involved or owt, but I don't want you thinking that I'm just some kind of music selection sponge. Anyway, this is one of those tunes that would be called a "guilty pleasure" by some people (like that, with the quotations hand gesture and all), but those people don't know what the fuck they're talking about. This was a part of Trevor Horn's re-edit album of The Human League's Dare and is more 'floor-oriented than The HL original. The proto-jackin' beat and the pitch-shifted, buzzy synths sound like Kraftwerk's robots malfunctioning and you just know that that will sound better than most pretenders. An absolute classic.)

Yer Mam!'s 10p Mix-Up Volume One (Disc 1) Ripped, Zipped and Sent Into Space

More of the same tomorrow,



Post a Comment

<< Home