Like Spotisfaction? Want to get involved? Submit your own playlist.
A’ight. We’re looking for people to contribute playlists to our Spotisfaction series, so if you like what we’re doing, give it a shot yerself. To see the guidelines, please continue reading…
Try to aim for around the 2 hour mark in playtime (around 25-30 tracks seems to work nicely).
Make a playlist of stuff that you’d listen to. You don’t have to love every track. Hell, you don’t have to have heard every track. If there is a track that you haven’t had chance to listen to then queue it up.
Try to keep it a bit varied. Themed playlists are fine and we don’t really have any limits on genres, but remember these are Mixtapes for the 21st Century. There is no point sharing the entire Hot Chip catalogue. Make it a bit personal.
Let us know where you’re coming from, what your standout tracks are and why. We’d like to know what has fueled this playlist – just a few lines is all that’s needed.
Good lord, it’s Friday. How fantastic was yesterdays playlist? Very. Good work David. For reasons I’m not going to go into I feel a little worse for wear today, so I’m infinitely glad Dan stepped up with today’s update. Quite a few of you have shown interest in making a submission – so go for it and mail it to firstname.lastname@example.org. We want your playlists! Oh, and to all those who take the time out of their day to read this blog and have made lots of nice, supportive comments: we thank you from the bottom of our hearts. OK, I’m going to hand you over to Mr Dan Base now. Keep it foolish, plastic heads.
Hi all, about time I made one of these mofos. Sorry about the length but this is the cut-down version! There isn’t a particular theme beyond “here are some songs getting me through February, the month where the year’s fun is planned”. Some ramblings about some of the songs follow.
Le Tigre – Deceptacon
Sleater-Kinney – Call The Doctor
Gabby Young & Other Animals – We’re All In The Together
Mark Hole – Dirty Base
Howling Bells – In The Woods
Midlake – Roscoe
Sonic Youth – Purr
Maximo Park – Books From Boxes
Kyuss – Hurricane
Teenage Fanclub – What You Do To Me
Ride – Birdman
Clayton Blizzard – Ya Basta Hermanos
The Smashing Pumpkins – Lanslide
Idlewild – A Modern Way Of Letting Go
Gogol Bordello – Wonderlust King
Dropkick Murphys – kiss Me I’m Shitfaced
The Pains Of Being Pure At Heart – This Love Is Fucking Right
Radiohead – Exit Music (For A Film)
Stellastarr* – Jenny
Eels – Hey Man (Now You’re Really Living)
Faith No More – The Gentle Art Of Making Enemies
The Vines – Spaceships
The Low Anthem – To Ohio
Neil Young – Heart Of Gold
Black Rebel Motorcycle Club – Am I Only
“Deceptacon” by Le Tigre was really the only sensible way to start this. Born from the ashes of Bikini Kill, this is what happens when you mix riot grrrl (not sure how many Rs to use here) and electroclash. 2 Pigs was a better place when they played this on a Saturday night. Also check out Sleater-Kinney who inspired them – surely owners of one of the most instantly recognisable sounds in all music. They’re on hiatus at the moment but the day they reform I’ll probably do some sort of highly embarrassing jig/pants-wetting combo in front of people I’m trying to impress. I can’t wait.
I saw Gabby Young and other Animals and Mark Hole at the amazing Onetaste festival towards the end of 2009. Utterly different to each other, Young delivers thoughtful yet huge (almost Arcade Fire sized) folk rock infused with swing and whatever else she fancies, whereas Hole brings in your face showmanship to the table with his piano led, dark pop.
I know Thom already included a Midlake song but I couldn’t resist “Roscoe”. I heard it by accident once and it got stuck in my head for about a fortnight before I could work out what the devil it was. In response to Dave’s tentative Sonic Youth inclusion, “Purr” is one of their best songs (from their best album, Dirty).
A reminder of how great so many somewhat forgotten 90s bands were is provided by Teenage Fanclub and Ride. The former peddle catchy American alternative college-rock and the latter a guitar-drenched British shoegaze that absorbs you for so totally you’ve grown a beard by the time it lets you go.
Clayton Blizzard is a Bristolian chap who plays guitar, sings and raps in a full on Brizzle accent. His songs are mostly political and always hilarious. Added bonus: he plays in Cheltenham every few months too.
Smashing Pumpkins’ cover of Fleetwood Mac’s “Landslide” is starker and colder than the original version but it really suits the song. It’s easy to forget how many styles the Pumpkins covered in their career when you listen to their last couple of albums, so here’s a reminder of what they could do at their best.
Gogol Bordello and Dropkick Murphys had to go on as they made some of the best drinking music of the last decade.
Stellastarr* first showed up on the Base radar when I saw them support Jane’s Addiction in 2003 in the winter of bleakest Wolverhampton. They were good enough that I dragged my sorry self to see their own show in a tiny venue in Bristol (the Fleece and Firkin to be precise) a few months later, supported by some young upstarts called The Killers.
Like many a boring, ageing bastard, I’ve got into plenty more mellow stuff as I’ve got older, hence the inclusion of “To Ohio” by The Low Anthem, a mellow slice of Americana. Surely they must be influenced by Mr Neil Young and his gorgeous “Heart of Gold” is my penultimate song. This song feels like the end of a summer. Finally, “Am I Only” by Black Rebel Motorcycle Club. They’re more famous for their unsubtle, driving rock songs but this song has an air of finality that closes the playlist nicely.
Day number Thursday. This one’s going to split people right down the middle – some people will *get it* and some people will wonder why the hell I’ve added William Shatner. The playlist as a whole aims for a “Hey, it’s almost the weekend, it’s payday, let’s start dancing!” kind of a vibe, and hopefully it’ll help get you through a dreary day.
The Quantic Soul Orchestra – Melodius Wayfarer (Soul Montuno)
Quantic – Wider Than The Sky
Caribou – The Spiritually Immature Mansion
Handsome Boy Modeling School – The Truth
The Heavy – Coleen
Madvillain, Medaphor – Raid
The Herbaliser, Roots Manuva – Lord Lord
The Roots – What They Do
The Cuban Brothers – Miguel For President
Jazzanova, Phonte Coleman – So Far From Home
Breakestra – Show and Prove
Bonobo – Transmission 94 – Parts 1 & 2
Four Tet – You Could Ruin My Day
William Shatner, Lemon Jelly – Together
Digitalism – Taken Away (Instrumental)
Miike Snow – Silvia, Robotberget Remix
The Whip – Divebomb, Crystal Castles Remix
Boys Noize – & Down, Extended Mix
Daedelus – Fair Weather Friends
Metric – Monster Hospital, MSTRKRFT Remix
Felix Da Housecat – Radio, Shinichi Osawa Remix Radio Edit
Disasterpeace – Win
Got a bit busy today, so apologies for this being a bit shorter than normal…
Mr. Scruff going into SOIL & “PIMP” SESSIONS – foot-tapping ridiculousness. Completely wonderful two tracks. Not really much more to say than that. If you don’t like them then this probably isn’t the playlist for you – be warned. After The Quantic Soul Orchestra’s carnival feel, I wanted to use Quantic as a tempo shift, and I think it works pretty well. It’s just a nice chillout song. I really love this section of the playlist, to be honest.
I adore everything that Madvillain (aka MF Doom, and a million and one other pseudonyms) does. His wordplay is completely amazing, it’s like watching a really talented butcher cleaving words instead of steaks. In a lot of ways he reminds me of Roots Manuva, which is why I threw them both together. Intelligent hip-hop is just not given enough credit in these days of autotune, identical beats and hooks, radio edits and crunk cups.
Now, I’m pretty sure the Jazzanova and Breakestra tracks will go either way. Personally, I love them, but then I love me a bit of funky soul. It’d be interesting to see what others think of them. For me, they brighten up my day. I find it impossible not to smile to these two bands, really, and coming from a grumpy sod that’s pretty good going.
William Shatner plus Lemon Jelly. A bit oddball, but I love it. You will too.
I added Miike Snow at the last second when I was reminded by a friend how awesome a track “Silvia” is. The original is haunting and beautiful, but didn’t really fit – I’ve added the Robotberget remix, which builds slowly but segues perfectly into the ‘house’ section of the playlist. Definitely check out the original edit of “Silvia” if you get a chance. Maybe I’ll fit it into my next playlist.
I quite like MSTRKRFT, but for me, their remix of Metric’s “Monster Hospital” is the best thing they’ve ever done. I’m a massive fan of Metric, but I’d go so far as saying that this remix is better than the original. I the powerful buildup into that, frankly, kickass house section. Perfect synths, perfect layering, perfect compliment to Emily’s perfect voice. Great track.
At present, Dave and I are swapping playlists daily. I’m taking Monday and Wednesday and he’s taking Tuesday and Thursday. Friday we had planned to do a collaborative playlist and then leave it for the weekend. Instead I want someone to put…
Day 3. The playlist is up early. I actually struggled with this one. Dave’s playlist was fantastic yesterday. I had already put a playlist together today earlier in the week, and another one as backup. However neither really stood up to yesterdays so I tried to bastardise the two. It didn’t work. I tried to salvage what I could and put something together and I think the playlist suffered as a result, but hey. I’ll put it out there.
With this one, I’ve decided to get most of the “heavier” stuff out the way first with the intent to finish on the atmospheric and textured tracks. Doesn’t quite blend, due to numerous amendments, but hell – after listening to it I can confirm that I love every track on here.
The Age Of The Understatement – The Last Shadow Puppets
Hearts On Fire – Clor
This Love Is Fucking Right – The Pains Of Being Pure At Heart
Everything’s Explodin’ – The Flaming Lips
Here Comes The Summer – The Fiery Furnaces
Mental – Eels
You! Me! Dancing! – Los Campesinos!
Summer Away – Aloha
The Movers And The Shakers – Herbert
Id Engager – Of Montreal
Light & Day – The Polyphonic Spree
Tokyo – The Books
Lord Leopard – Caribou
Desert Eagle – Ratatat
The Upwards March – Bell Orchestre
From Off To On – The Knife
Gone To Earth – The American Analog Set
The Outer Banks – The Album Leaf
Leviathan, Bound – Shearwater
Knife – Grizzly Bear
Everything In Its Right Place – Radiohead
Black Swan – Thom Yorke
The Weight Of My Words (Four Tet Remix) – Kings Of Convenience
You Are The Worst Thing In The World – Telefon Tel Aviv
Floating Points – Ellen Allien
Leaving You Behind – Herrmann + Kleine
On A White Lake, Near A Green Mountain – M83
Allt varð hljótt – Ólafur Arnalds
Today’s highlights: Forgive me, it’s been a long morning and I’m pretty tired. There are too many words to be written today…
When I saw Seasick Steve live I was humbled by his raw honesty and passion. “I Started Out With Nothing” and it’s driving blues progression is a fitting track for the start of a day.
Further on in the playlist you’ll find something to compliment the Ringo Deathstarr I had on my Monday Spotisfaction. Been going through a bit of a shoe gaze thing for a while. I got a chance to see The Pains Of Being Pure At Heart recently with The Depreciation Guild and was amazed. “This Love Is Fucking Right” is saccharin noise pop bathed in distorted guitars and upbeat melodies. Or something. Anyway, watch out for The Depreciation Guild too, as I will no doubt be featuring them shortly.
I haven’t got anything clever or interesting to say about The Fiery Furnaces – “Here Comes The Summer” but I wanted to give it a mention because it is a fantastic track.
Going back a few years courtesy of the long suffering Mark Everett of Eels fame with the well crafted “Mental”. Verse-chorus-verse formula dripping with emotional angst, complete with a fantastically surreal almost surf-esq breakdown.
The intro to “You! Me! Dancing!” by Los Campesinos!, especially after the last track in the playlist, really tugs at your soul before unleashing a frenzied torrent of modern indie rock with a light smattering of Patrick Moore-like percussions. Oh my, I’ve given myself images of “The Gamesmaster” playing Xylophone with Los Campesinos! I’d pay to see that. I’d pay to see Patrick Moore playing with any modern band though, to be fair.
Herbert’s “The Movers and the Shakers” starts out meek enough with simple beats and an organ loop to get you hooked, laying on the vox, the beat and the crazy before the horns signify that it is time to start dancing. Yes, dancing. It’s a warm and fantastically well topped slice of dance pizza pie. It probably has pineapple on. Although given Herbet’s outlook on life and the subversive tone on the album, the pizza is likely to contain traces of chewed up aluminium.
“Tokyo” by The Books serves as an interlude. A fantastic interlude, mind, with the first of two Japanese transport soundbytes in (the second being “Leaving You Behind” by Herrmann + Kleine later in the playlist).
I’m sorry Caribou. I think you’re fantastic but I was only able to squeeze you in this time with the sublime but short “Lord Leopard”. To me, this song is akin to walking up a flight of stairs, only you have three knees in each leg, the stairs are synths and there is a drummer following you up on one of those Stannah stairlifts.
Ratatat’s “Desert Eagle” continues from the Caribou stairway. You reach the top only to find more stairs, some lava and 50% more apocalypse. The distorted guitar riff here really emulates the feeling I get walking up apocalyptic staircases surrounded by lava that I encounter on a daily basis. Oh also, in this analogy, the drummer in the stairlift has fallen into the lave and been replaced with a sequencer.
The Knife – “From Off to On” makes me want to commit Enocide. Simple as that.
“Everything In It’s Right Place” by the mighty Radiohead, then. I don’t think I have to say anything about this track. As soon as I hear the opening; I’m smiling. The tune is going to stay in my head all day, for sure. I followed this up with “Black Swan” by the man himself, Thom Yorke. As his solo stuff is still nothing short of excellent. As I said to David – big name bands can be good too, they just have more to prove, which is something Thom Yorke and Radiohead have been doing for quite some time now.
I picked the Four Tet reworking of the Kings Of Convenience classic “The Weight Of My Words” from the album Verses because Four Tet managed to add so much more to an already fantastic and sincere track. None of the haunting sadness of this song has been lost in translation.
The next few tracks are just fantastic, I haven’t the vocabulary to express their brilliance so I will just shut up and let you listen.
Rounding this playlist off however, is Ólafur Arnalds. From what I can tell, this guy is a genuine god damn talent. Not content with drumming for hardcore/metal bands but he also appears to be gifted in the languages of guitar, piano and banjo. He is such a nice chap he even did string arrangements for 65daysofstatic. “Allt varð hljótt” is taken from his latest release “Found Music” and I urge you to give it a listen in it’s entirety.
Give the playlist a listen and let me know what you think. I’m thinking of doing a bit of a radical change of style for my next time (Which is likely to be Monday again). We’ll see what develops.
“Out of some desire to do something other than sit around and rot, the men known as David Prowse and Thom Lavelle decided to sit around and rot whilst swapping Spotify playlists and blogging about them…”
Day number Tuesday of our Spotisfaction series, and next up is my playlist. Honestly, the first draft was about 40 songs too long, and contained a distinct section for pretty much every genre under the sun… Figured I should probably cut it down a little, and ended up with the following. Worried I might have played it a bit too safe with my selections, so feedback is very much appreciated.
The Little People (Feat Rachael Roberts) – Breathe Again
The Cinematic Orchestra – Child Song
The xx – Crystalised
Maps – Valium In The Sunshine
Neon Indian – 6669 (I don’t know if you know)
TV on the Radio – Wolf Like Me
Death From Above 1979 – Black History Month
Japandroids – Young Hearts Spark Fire
Titus Andronicus – Fear And Loathing In Mahwah, NJ
Spoon – Got Nuffin’
Kevin Drew – Lucky Ones
The Hold Steady – Constructive Summer
The Acorn – Antenna
Bowerbirds – Northern Lights
Sonic Youth – Incinerate
Caribou – Sundialing
Atlas Sound – Quick Canal (w. Laetitia Sadier)
Sleeping States – Red King
Sufjan Stevens – They Are Night Zombies!! They Are Neighbors!! They Have Come Back From The Dead!! Ahhhhh!
Interpol – Stella was a diver and she was always down
Sunset Rubdown – Idiot Heart
The National – Mr. November
My standouts below…
I first heard Sia in 2003 or so, and have been a pretty big fan ever since. Her solo stuff is awesome, but didn’t really fit in with the feel of this playlist. I was tempted to go with some Zero 7 back from when she guested on a lot of their tracks, but in the end I chose the Four Tet remix of “Breathe Me” as A) I love Four Tet and B) It’s my sodding playlist.
Oh man, The Cinematic Orchestra. I saw them at the Roundhouse doing their “Man With a Movie Camera” short film set… I loved them before, but seriously, they’ll always be incredible in my eyes after that. This track is from “Ma Fluer” but was played that night too. Hammond organs are awesomesauce and win chips.
I used The xx as a way to bridge the introduction from the orchestral beauty of The Cinematic Orchestra into the next section of the playlist. I heart this track, it gets me going. The layering of the male vs female vocals is sublime. Off the back of this track, we move straight into Maps – I was fortunate enough to catch them when they played Dot-to-Dot in Bristol last year, and bought their sophomore album on the strength of that gig alone. This is my favourite track from “Turning the Mind”. James Chapman just exudes focus – I swear when I saw them he pretty much forgot that there was a crowd, he was so into the music. That love for what he does is clearly apparent in this track.
Tunde Adebimpe is pretty much amazing; I’ll admit right now for the sake of full disclosure that I actually want to be him (and would probably settle for stroking his beard gently). TV on the Radio had to feature somewhere in this playlist, and “Wolf Like Me” seemed like the best choice. I love the breakdown in this track, and the “howling forever” section brings out the ol’ goosebumps. I love how they can use their horn section without it being completely overpowering. It’s layered so well that you hardly notice it’s there, but the whole song would sound so flat if it wasn’t. Such clever mixing.
I really wanted to play the Alan Braxe & Fred Falke remix of Death From Above 1979’s Black History Month from their “Romance Bloody Romance” LP, but annoyingly I couldn’t find it on Spotify. I absolutely love the opening refrain from Jesse here: “Can you remember a time when this city was / a great place for architects and dillitentes / a nice place for midwives and crossing guards and on and on”. The prevailing theme is of the world changing around you and it really resonates with me – I listen to this track and am taken back to memories from my childhood, school, university, and am reminded how the rose-tinted glasses of life make those things seem so much better in hindsight than they might have been at the time. I love the subtle pessimism of the lyrics crossed with the sombre melody of the synth. Brilliant, haunting, depressing track.
I only started listening to Japandroids very recently – I think I caught them on a DrownedinSound playlist, and am hugely thankful that I did. Their sound is so raw, and the best way I can describe them is that it’s like listening to a mediocre pop-punk band whilst lying in an upturned bathtub wrapped in cotton wool. You’d be forgiven for immediately ruling them out of your music collection, but the garage band noise-scene sound really works for them so bugger it. Plus, I share the same name as the drummer so they had to go into this playlist, no?
Kevin Drew marks the start of the second half of the playlist, and is there to get me back into an upbeat mood after the previous couple of songs. There’s something about Kevin’s work (whether solo, with Broken Social Scene, or through his various other projects such as KC Accidental) that just makes me feel good about myself. The whole “BSS Presents: Spirit If…” album is the musical equivalent of coming home after a long holiday, I guess. Comforting, warm and familiar. Hugely looking forward to BSS’s new album in May.
Leading from Kevin straight into The Hold Steady makes me a happy bunny – I could listen to these guys every day of the year and they’d never get old to me. So much energy – I can be sat at my desk glazed over and waist deep in work, but in my head I’ve downed 10 cans of Red Bull and am dancing around in my pants with a hairbrush microphone. Whether that says more about my sexuality than my musical tastes, I’m not sure…
I suppose I should like Sonic Youth, but if I’m perfectly honest I never really afforded them much of a listen – I wrote them off a long time ago, seemingly without much reason. I found this track after trying to rectify that, and am reserving judgment for now I think. I’d appreciate a recommendation or two if anyone reading this likes them.
Wanted so much to play Sleeping States whilst I was compiling this list, so that’s why they’re here – I found them on a Last.fm recommendation from Grizzly Bear and that’s a pretty fantastic compliment, and well-deserved in my opinion. I’m very much into their “In The Gardens of the North” LP at the moment, and I can heartily recommend if you’re into melodic pop. Which you should be. That is all.
Finally, I had to finish with The National, if only because dumbass here managed to miss out on tickets to see them in the Royal Albert Hall. Hmmph.
“Out of some desire to do something other than sit around and rot, the men known as David Prowse and Thom Lavelle decided to sit around and rot whilst swapping Spotify playlists and blogging about them…”
And so it begins. This week, Dave Prowse and myself are going to be swapping Spotify playlists, culminating in a Collab playlist come Friday. I was first up, so here is my Monday morning playlist.
Take a listen, leave some feedback. We’re hoping we can expand this concept in the coming weeks, so feel free to get in touch with either of us if you want to contribute in some form (playlists, reviews, rants, ideas, whatever).
Running down track by track isn’t happening. So instead, I’ll list the highlights. Will keep this short…
Metronomy’s “Heartbreaker” is just the track to kick off the weekends revenge with its steady beat and dark undertones before rolling into “You Could Easily Have Me”. Taken from Metronomy’s debut album “Pip Paine (Pay The £5000 You Owe)”, this track is a personal favourite, complete with gangled distorted riffs and awkward melodies. The shocking thing here is that it all comes together so well.
With that behind us, it’s on to Quasi. You know, ‘that band with Janet Weiss in’. “Presto Change-o” wouldn’t sound out of place on Yamane Michiru’s Castlevania soundtracks. The restless yet futile ascension of this haunting track makes me feel that I should be atop a giant tower, at midnight, overlooking the city. Smoking a cigarette and plotting evil. Looking cool… (with a cape).
(aside) I put “GNG BNG” by Flying Lotus on here as it nothing short of awesome. I’ll just leave it at that and see how you get on with it.
On with show and on to Ringo Deathstarr. I came for the name, stayed for the awesome. I saw their name on a split 7 inch with The Depreciation Guild a few months back. I was blown away with the fantastic band name but sadly didn’t get chance to check them out. Finally gave them a listen recently and well, I was impressed enough to tell you that I am impressed with them. “Summertime” is candy wrapped shoegaze, drowned in ambience and subtle melodies that may or may not put you into a quiet candyfloss coma.
In an attempt to break things up, I dropped a few oddities in to the playlist. Phi Life Cypher, for example. These guys have always escaped my radar. Having done work with DJ Vadim and The Gorillaz you would think I’d have paid more attention to this group. Well, I haven’t, no. Regardless, my friend JB played “Herbaholics”, rapropaganda of grand intentions, for me many years ago and I’ve held on to it ever since. This track has hooks, it has the beat and it mentions Jack Straw. Instant win in my book.
The Hasidic singjay known as Matisyahu has single handedly proven that white people can be cool and having religious messages in your music isn’t always horrible. This live version of “King Without A Crown” is an office favourite and has earnt a place on todays playlist.
Swanton Bombs – “Wasteland” reminds me of The Cramps attempting to accidently The White Stripes and winner. Don’t try and look for sense in that.
“Dot – Instrumental” by Gonzales helps me with my crippling lust for fantastic piano pieces. This track could be two hours long and I’d still be mesmerised by it. As it stands, it’s two minutes long and therefore ten times as fantastic as your mind will allow you to comprehend.
And now we lay in wait for Tuesdays playlist to go up and read what David has to say about that. See you Wednesday.