Posts Tagged ‘Seanmix’

Seanmix | Best of 2012

Monday, December 10th, 2012

DOWNLOAD VOLUME ONE // MIRROR
The Nights of Wine and Roses – Japandroids // Summer Child (feat. Sarah Teresa Brown) – Intermissions // The Fever (Aye Aye) – Death Grips // Mercy (feat. Big Sean, Pusha T, 2 Chainz) – Kanye West // Beez in the Trap (feat. 2 Chainz) – Nicki Minaj // Genesis – Grimes // Losing You – Solange // Her Fantasy – Matthew Dear // Bangarang (feat. Sirah) – Skrillex // Some Nights – Fun. // Die Young – Ke$ha // Let’s Have a Kiki – Scissor Sisters // 1991 – Azealia Banks // Anything Could Happen – Ellie Goulding // Unto Caesar – Dirty Projectors // Let Me Be Him – Hot Chip // Something Inside – Jessie Ware

DOWNLOAD VOLUME TWO // MIRROR
Every Single Night – Fiona Apple // Into the Black – Chromatics // How Do You Do? – Hot Chip // This Kiss – Carly Rae Jepsen // Oblivion – Grimes // Money Trees (feat. Jay Rock) – Kendrick Lamar // Okay Cupid – Kitty Pryde // Purple Kisses – A$AP Rocky // New God Flow (feat. Pusha T & Ghostface Killah) – Kanye West // Liquorice – Azealia Banks // Don’t Deny Your Heart – Hot Chip // I Belong in Your Arms – Chairlift // Cool Light – Bear in Heaven // Blue Meanies – Opossom // Elephant – Tame Impala // Some Time Alone Alone – Melody’s Echo Chamber // Monkey Riches – Animal Collective // Hacker – Death Grips

DOWNLOAD VOLUME THREE // MIRROR
The Night – School of Seven Bells // Met Before – Chairlift // Offspring Are Blank – Dirty Projectors // Call Me Maybe – Carly Rae Jepsen // I’ve Seen Footage – Death Grips // Gotta Ball – V Nasty & Lil’ Debbie // Go Hard (La. La. La.) – Kreayshawn // Crush – Sleigh Bells // Kiss Me Crazy – Bear in Heaven // Back from the Grave – Chromatics // Everything Is Embarrassing – Sky Ferreira // Locked Out of Heaven – Bruno Mars // Running – Jessie Ware // Lemme See (feat. Rick Ross) – Usher // Oh Yeah – Bat for Lashes // Swan Song – Jessie Ware // The House That Heaven Built – Japandroids // A Wall – Bat for Lashes // Dome Horizon – Geoff Barrow/Ben Salisbury // Wide Awake – Katy Perry // Hot Knife – Fiona Apple

DOWNLOAD VOLUME FOUR // MIRROR
The Exact Colour of Doubt – Liars // Devotion – Jessie Ware // Bird on a Wire – Action Bronson & Riff Raff // Ice age – How to destroy angels_ // Scavenger – School of Seven Bells // Laura – Bat for Lashes // Running from the Sun – Chromatics // Sun in Your Eyes – Grizzly Bear // Mladic – Godspeed You! Black Emperor // When David Heard – Eric Whitacre

In the grand tradition of 2009, 2010, and 2011, here are several mixes of my favorite songs of the year. I’ve enjoyed making and listening to each disc, though let’s be honest, Vol. 4 is where I’ve lived for some time now.

If you want to go a little deeper, here are the 10 albums I liked the best this year:

Godspeed You! Black Emperor: ‘Allelujah! Don’t Bend! Ascend!
Jessie Ware: Devotion
Chromatics: Kill for Love
Grimes: Visions
Azealia Banks: 1991 EP
Death Grips: The Money Store
Bat for Lashes: The Haunted Man
Dirty Projectors: Swing Lo Magellan
Chairlift: Something
Bear in Heaven: I Love You, It’s Cool

The Kendrick Lamar album seems pretty good too, but something that lyrically dense will take me a while to properly appreciate.

If you like anything you hear, please buy it, because people who make music you like to hear deserve your money!


Seanmix | Best of 2011

Wednesday, December 21st, 2011

DOWNLOAD VOLUME ONE
Live Those Days Tonight – Friendly Fires // Party Rock Anthem – LMFAO // Blow – Ke$ha // It’s Up There – The Field // Michael Jackson – Das Racist // Generation – Liturgy // Powa – tUnE-yArDs // Kaputt – Destroyer // 1+1 – Beyoncé // Holocene – Bon Iver // Super Bass – Nicki Minaj // Hurts Like Heaven – Coldplay // Loop the Loop – Wild Beasts // Take Care (feat. Rihanna) – Drake // Is Your Love Strong Enough? – How to Destroy Angels // Why I Love You (feat. Mr. Hudson) – Jay-Z & Kanye West

DOWNLOAD VOLUME TWO
Marry the Night – Lady Gaga // Over My Dead Body – Drake // Niggas in Paris – Jay-Z & Kanye West // Never – Orbital // Schoolin’ Life – Beyoncé // The Wilhelm Scream – James Blake // Are You… Can You… Were You? (Felt) – Shabazz Palaces // I Care – Beyoncé // Deeper – Wild Beasts // Marvins Room – Drake // No Church in the Wild (feat. Frank Ocean) – Jay-Z & Kanye West // Riotriot – tUnE-yArDs // Veins of God – Liturgy // True Faith – George Michael // Beth/Rest – Bon Iver // End Come Too Soon – Wild Beasts

DOWNLOAD VOLUME THREE [UPDATE: new file host]
Poor in Love – Destroyer // Party (feat. André 3000) – Beyoncé // ∞ ∞ / Romance Layers – Gang Gang Dance // Coastin’ – Cities Aviv // Recollections of the Wraith – Shabazz Palaces // Stay Away – Charlie XCX // Hurting – Friendly Fires // Claudia Lewis – M83 // Andro – Oneohtrix Point Never // Limit to Your Love – James Blake // BTSTU – Jai Paul // The King’s New Clothes Were Made By His Own Hands – Shabazz Palaces // Under Ground Kings – Drake // Before – Washed Out // It Takes Time to Be a Man – The Rapture // Sacer – Gang Gang Dance // The Ride – Drake // Separator – Radiohead

DOWNLOAD VOLUME FOUR
Born This Way – Lady Gaga // Bizness – tUnE-yArDs // Down On Me (feat. 50 Cent) – Jeremih // Show Me Lights – Friendly Fires // The Magic Place – Julianna Barwick // Zoo Station – Nine Inch Nails // Free Press and Curl – Shabazz Palaces // Replica – Oneohtrix Point Never // I Never Learnt to Share – James Blake // Glass Jar – Gang Gang Dance // Sexy and I Know It – LMFAO // Till the World Ends – Britney Spears // Downtown – Destroyer // A Real Hero (feat. Electric Youth) – College // Heavy Pop – Wu Lyf // The Edge of Glory – Lady Gaga

After making best-of mixes in 2009 and 2010, I knew I’d be doing it again this year. What I didn’t count on is going from three discs to four! But I listened to and loved a lot of music this year and quickly realized there was no way I could bring myself to cut a whole disc’s worth of material from my favorites. So I’m giving them to you at no extra charge!

If I had to rank my favorite releases this year, it’d be as follows:

9. Beyoncé – 4
8. The Field – Looping State of Mind
7. Shabazz Palaces – Black Up
6. Jay-Z and Kanye West – Watch the Throne
5. Friendly Fires – Pala
4. Lady Gaga – Born This Way
3. Wild Beasts – Smother
2. Drake – Take Care
1. Destroyer – Kaputt

I basically could have kept putting song after song from these suckers on there (especially Kaputt, a stone masterpiece) and left it at that. Meanwhile there was sort of a three-way tie for tenth place between James Blake, Gang Gang Dance, Bon Iver, Oneohtrix Point Never, and tUnE-yArDs, about whom you could pretty much say the same thing. So that explains the need for the fourth volume.

But only partially. You may also have noticed an increase in the amount of both hip-hop and radio dance-pop in the mix. I think you can attribute both to the birth of my delightful daughter Helena. Helena spent the first six weeks of her life in the hospital, stuck in the neonatal intensive care unit. Her mother spent the preceding three months either in the hospital as well or on bedrest at home. So I ended up spending a lot of time in the car, driving to and from the hospital or running enough errands for two people. New York currently has two pop radio stations, both of which are increasingly indistinguishable from the dance station it also has, so a lot of that kind of music was drilled into my head almost by default. While I never ever ever want to hear the voices of Usher or Pitbull ever again, I still found many of these songs astonishingly entertaining. Months later, when my daughter came home and grew strong and healthy and old enough to enjoy dancing around the room with me, a lot of them doubled as a soundtrack for our Daddy Dance Parties. So yes, LMFAO is close to my heart. (Seriously though, that group is perfectly harmless, and those songs are good-natured and fun to dance to.)

As for hip-hop, it’d been years since I listened to as much new stuff as I did this year. I don’t think it’s a coincidence that the records from which I drew most heavily sort of followed in the footsteps of My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy from last year and treated the album format like the rock album format, with an emphasis on atmosphere and a journey from A to B and less obvious filler. I also don’t think it’s a coincidence that some of the big commercial acts are starting to audibly question and complicate commercial hip-hop’s enormously boring lockstep subject matter of sex, money, not caring for haters, and the artist’s own awesomeness, with a dollop of “life is hard” to take the curse off it. (I don’t say that to deny that life is, in fact, hard, or at least used to be, for a lot of these guys. Obviously a lot of rappers (though certainly not all of them, and more specifically not all of them at the top of the charts these days) come from circumstances involving pervasive poverty, the shadow of criminality, and institutionalized racism, circumstances I’m fortunate not to have an experience with whatsoever. My point is just that boring art is boring art.) This also helps mitigate against all the “bitch” business, which is the kind of thing that I and most everyone I know finds totally unacceptable in any other field (I mean, presuming you’ve followed the discussion of superhero comics this year, you know how (appropriately!) low people’s tolerance is for misogynistic nonsense there) and is becoming increasingly difficult for me to excuse, let alone enjoy, in hip-hop too.

But again, it’s the baby what did it, really. Most of the time I’m listening to music I’m also doing something else — reading, writing, working. I’m pretty good at multitasking where music listening is concerned, but hip-hop’s the great exception. Unless it’s an old album I basically have memorized and can thus sort of tune out as an immediate presence, I find the constant flow of spoken words too distracting to get anything else done, especially the writing that occupies most of my work time. Meanwhile, even if I managed to only semi-pay attention to the lyrics, that’s no way to listen to an art form that’s predicated on wordplay and lyricism. I’m not a lyric person with any music, almost to a fault — the sounds hit me first and foremost — but with hip-hop you have to make an exception to an extent or you’re missing out. Put it all together and you get me listening to way less hip-hop than I did in the mid-to-late ’90s, when it was the lingua franca for me and all of my friends.

But now that the baby’s home, my wife, who has problems with sleep at the best of times, goes to bed by herself while I hang out downstairs with the sleeping baby — this way she (my wife) can drift off to sleep in a bedroom she knows won’t be disturbed by a restless baby before she (my wife) is able to fall into a deep sleep. I wait a couple hours, usually doing work and chores, and then bring the baby up and go to sleep myself. During that time I wash dishes and bottle parts by hand since we don’t have a dishwasher. And that’s the perfect time to listen to music, particularly hip-hop, since I’m in a quiet house with a stretch of time at my disposal, and the work I’m doing is mindless and won’t distract from listening to an album-length torrent of wordplay. It’s been exciting to slip back into the genre a bit, even if only via the big acclaimed records everyone listened to. I don’t need to reinvent the wheel or blaze any trails, I just want to expose myself to as much good music as I can.

Hopefully this mix will help you do the same!

PS: If you like what you hear, please purchase it from the artists. People who make music you like deserve your money!


Seanmix | Best of 2010

Sunday, January 2nd, 2011

Just like last year, here’s a three-part mix I made featuring some of the best songs of the year. This year they’re almost kinda sorta themed: The first disc is mostly dancey, the second disc is mostly heavy, and the third disc is mostly, I dunno, ruminative. I hope you enjoy all three! And if you do, be sure to seek out and purchase stuff from the artists themselves. They deserve your money!

DOWNLOAD VOLUME ONE
Scissor Sisters – Night Work // LCD Soundsystem – Drunk Girls // Kylie Minogue – Get Outta My Way // !!! – The Most Certain Sure // Caribou – Sun // Trent Reznor and Atticus Ross – In Motion // Underworld – Always Loved a Film // School of Seven Bells – Dust Devil // Pantha Du Prince – A Nomad’s Retreat // Delorean – Infinite Desert // Teengirl Fantasy – Cheaters // Hot Chip – One Life Stand // Goldfrapp – I Wanna Life // Robyn – Dancing on My Own // Underworld – Scribble

DOWNLOAD VOLUME TWO
How to Destroy Angels – The Space in Between // Kanye West – Power // Glasser – Apply // Meth Ghost and Rae – Criminology 2.5 // Amusement Parks on Fire – Flashlight Planetarium // Serena-Maneesh – I Just Want to See Your Face // Interpol – Lights // Liars – Scissor // Trent Reznor and Atticus Ross – A Familiar Taste // Spoon – Who Makes Your Money // Big Boi – Shutterbugg (feat. Cutty) // The Knife – The Height of Summer // Caribou – Hannibal // Sleigh Bells – Infinity Guitars // David Bowie – Battle for Britain (The Letter) [Live] // Liars – Scarecrows on a Killer Slant // The Knife in collaboration with Mt. Sims – Colouring of Pigeons // Kanye West – Lost in the World (feat. Bon Iver)/Who Will Survive in America

DOWNLOAD VOLUME THREE
LCD Soundsystem – Dance Yrself Clean // Robyn – Fembot // Best Coast – Boyfriend // School of Seven Bells – I L U // Drake – Karaoke // Trent Reznor and Atticus Ross – Hand Covers Bruise // Four Tet – Love Cry // How to Dress Well – Can’t See My Own Face // A Sunny Day in Glasgow – Moments on the Lawn/Drink Drank Drunk // Liars – Proud Evolution // Antony & the Johnsons – I’m in Love // A Sunny Day in Glasgow – Nitetime Rainbows (Acid Wash Edit by Benoit Pioulard) // School of Seven Bells – Bye Bye Bye // Azure Ray – Dancing Ghosts // Bat for Lashes – Let’s Get Lost (feat. Beck) // Goldfrapp – Voicething // Underworld – Louisiana