After a dance-heavy mix last time, this one offers a little more variety. J is of course a folk and world music fan, and I’ve started to dig through her CD collection, picking up at least a few interesting artists along the way: Kevin Breit, Amadou & Mariam, Sarah Harmer, Basia Bulat and Tri-Continental, to name a few.
Electronic music continues to hold my attention, but I’m a little tired of the repeated echoes of electro and I never got very far into dubstep. Ninja Tune’s recent four-CD XX twentieth-anniversary collection blew my mind, though: take the various ideas coming out of electro and dubstep, and let some eccentric artists take them in wild directions. Trippy stuff; perhaps more so if I had more of a taste for UK hiphop.
Download here, for a few weeks only.
- kevin drew. frightening lives. rock, from spirit if…, 2007.
- diplo. summer’s gonna hurt you [diplo 2010 remix]. dubstep, from ninja tune xx compilation, 2010.
- dj krush. pretense. instrumental hip hop, from jaku, 2004.
- kanye west. all of the lights. hip hop, from my beautiful dark twisted fantasy, 2010.
- sufjan stevens. riffs and variations on a single note for jelly roll, earl hines, louis armstrong, baby dodds, and the king of swing, to name a few. pop, from come on feel the illinoise, 2005.
- belle & sebastian. string bean jean. pop, from dog on wheels ep, 1997.
- basia bulat. heart of my own. folk, from heart of my own, 2010.
- patrick watson. traveling salesman. rock, from wooden arms, 2009.
- hot chip. keep fallin’. electro-soul, from coming on strong, 2005.
- grasscut. blink in the night. downtempo, from ninja tune xx compilation, 2010.
- béla fleck & the flecktones. prelude. jazz, from outbound, 2000.
- peaking lights. all the sun that shines. downtempo, from 936, 2011.
- parov stelar. catgroove. acid jazz, from coco, 2009.
- dennis ferrer. son of raw. acid jazz, from future sounds of jazz vol. 11 compilation, 2007.
- vive la fête! assez. electro, from nuit blanche, 2003.
- björk. pagan poetry. pop, from vespertine, 2001.
- amadou & mariam. m’bife blues feat. manu chao. world, from dimanche à bamako, 2005.
- harry manx & kevin breit. curly may and his brother. folk, from jubilee, 2003.
Was this list influenced by any YouTube memes or the occasional “just for laughs” impulse? You be the judge.
My new music intake rate is still quite low. This year did involve some time digging through the crates for the most danceworthy music for the wedding, though. That process fed about 70% of the content in this mix, although very few of these tracks actually got played at the wedding.
We have gone to the Hillside festival the last two years, but I haven’t been quite as inspired by the acts as I was during my first visit to the festival. Patrick Watson and Holy Fuck are the two most notable exceptions, both delivering great sets.
There’s a heavy acid jazz / nu-jazz component to this mix. I have a particular soft spot for two of the final tracks here. The atmosphere of the Kruder & Dorfmeister Lamb remix is a little over-the-top, but remains my favourite acid jazz track of all time. The Herbaliser’s live rendition of “The Missing Suitcase” has been in my collection for a decade, but never really caught my full attention. The wedding hunt brought it to the foreground as a great, danceable, organic jazzy track – and dancing to it at the wedding with friends was a highlight for me.
So, download the mix here (for a few weeks only). The tracklist is below, also with the album/compilation where I first heard the tracks.
- moondog. bird’s lament [henrik schwarz remix]. jazz + house, from dj-kicks – henrik schwarz compilation, 2006.
- omar-s. flying gorgars. techno, from fabric 45, 2009.
- the crystal method. blowout. big beat, from tweekend, 2001.
- radioactive man. uranium. electro, from andrew weatherall – from the bunker (a rotter’s golf club mix) compilation, 2007.
- the soft pink truth. promofunk. electro, from colette no. 5 compilation, 2003.
- erlend øye. sheltered life / fine day. electro, from dj-kicks – erlend øye compilation, 2004.
- daniel lanois. i love you. pop, from shine, 2003.
- patrick watson. tracy’s waters. rock, from wooden arms, 2009.
- radiohead. 15 steps. rock, from in rainbows, 2007.
- skalpel. quiz. acid jazz, from skalpel, 2004.
- thunderball. solar. downtempo, from modular systems compilation, 2001.
- caribou. jamelia. electronic / rock, from swim, 2010.
- holy fuck. stay lit. rock, from latin, 2010.
- gorillaz. feel good inc. rock / hip hop, from demon days, 2005.
- povo. uam uam [moonstarr remix]. acid jazz, from future sounds of jazz vol. 10 compilation, 2005.
- the herbaliser band. the missing suitcase [session one]. acid jazz, from session one, 2000.
- lamb. trans fatty acid [k&d session]. acid jazz, from kruder & dorfmeister – the k&d sessions compilation, 1998.
- portishead. the rip. trip hop, from third, 2008.
The Hillside music festival appears to have a very low profile in the blogosphere… curious, because it’s one of the best I’ve attended. I suspect it’s just a way of keeping a good festival for the locals, and fending off the Toronto hordes. A very low-key festival, a great lineup and a nice location on an island in Guelph Lake. The only trick is getting tickets – they sell out of weekend passes in a matter of hours, and tickets sell out in under a week. And that’s in April, two months before they’ve even announced the lineup.
Anyways, my highlights from the festival this year:
- woodhands. Great electro, playing to a thrilled and bouncing crowd. Watching the geeks crowdsurf was well worth the time
- patrick watson. An intriguingly loose and brave rock crew, fresh from a Polaris prize win. Very interesting sound, and great percussion.
- the clues. This Montreal group played a super-tight, slick rock/pop set, but were clearly off-kilter from the weather. A massive thunderclap/lightning strike forced the stage crew to power everything down minutes before their set, and the reboot clearly harmed the band’s polished sound setup and cut a deep hole in their playlist. Too bad – they were excellent.
- great lakes swimmers. I’ve heard the buzz, but never seen these introverted folkies. Nice, sweet, and a little reminiscent of Sufjan Stevens.
- the tallboys. You won’t find a disc in the name of these jazz profs and studio musicians, but they played a great set.
My musical listening time has diminished dramatically in the last year, since I finished my graduate degree and moved to full-time work in the transportation field. Unlike my past jobs, my work does not involve extended periods of concentration at a computer with the headphones on, and I don’t take in nearly as much music.
The main musical event of 2008 was a trip to Guelph Lake for the Hillside festival, with a great lineup—Broken Social Scene, Harry Manx and many many more over the course of a full weekend.
At any rate, I did put together a quick mix of some recent favourites for myself and anyone who’d care to hear it. Drop me a line to hear the mix.
- amon tobin. people like frank. jazzy drum & bass, from permutations, 1998.
- xploding plastix. more powah to yah. jazzy drum & bass, from amateur girlfriends go proskirt agents, 2001.
- v.l.a.d. transcom_t.v. techno, from D, 2002.
- mouse on mars. untitled states of. ambient / experimental, from agit itter it it, 2001.
- ml. sidedish. experimental, from everyone looks like somebody else, 2002.
- elliott smith. independence day. pop, from xo, 1998.
- harry manx. only then will your house be blessed. blues / world, from wise and otherwise, 2002.
- sufjan stevens. romulus. folk, from greetings from michigan! the great lakes state, 2003.
- yppah. again with the subtitles. downtempo, from ninja tune: you don’t know, 2008.
- radiohead. reckoner. rock / experimental, from in rainbows, 2007.
- kevin drew. fcked up kid. rock, from spirit if…, 2007.
- feist. past in present. pop, from the reminder, 2007.
- hot chip. playboy. soul / electro, from future sounds of jazz 10, 2005.
- caribou. melody day. experimental / rock, from andorra, 2007.
- milky globe. ode [scsi 9 moscow mix]. ambient, from susumu yokota: lo compilation, 2006.
- justice. newjack. electro, from t, 2007.
- gary davis. the professor’s here. disco, from four tet: dj kicks, 2006 (original release 1982).
- the herbaliser. gadget funk. funk, from ninja tune: you don’t know, 2008.