Jakub Alexander curates the music selections here at the blog. He also runs his Moodgadet record label out of Brooklyn, NY and does A&R for Ghostly International Records.
Links:Moodgadget RecordsJakub's Tumblr
Maybe only a hand full of you have this release marked on your calendar, maybe even less than that but I doubt it, this release no matter how good it sounds musically to anyone its a piece of electronic music history and one of the most thought out gestures you could ever give to your fans. As a record label owner this project is the pinnacle of all releases and especially during a time where digital sales have almost equaled the same amount as physical sales. The Warp20 (Box Set) contains:
– Warp20 (1989-2009) The Complete Catalogue (192 page book)
– Warp20 (Chosen): Double CD album (Ten songs chosen by you (Warp20.net), ten songs chosen by Warp co-founder Steve Beckett)
– Warp20 (Recreated): Double CD album (Twenty brand new cover versions of Warp songs by Warp artists past and present)
– Warp20 (Unheard): Triple 10” Vinyl (Completely unheard tracks by Boards of Canada, Autechre and Broadcast)
– Warp20 (Elemental): CD album (re-edits from Osymyso, made from sections, samples, & fragments of Warp music from the last 20 years)
– Warp20 (Infinite): Double 10” Vinyl (hand-picked locked-groove loops from Warp tracks)
One song that i’ve waiting to hear was Bibio’s cover of Boards of Canada, wow okay just say that out loud, now that just makes my ears smile. The man can do no wrong in my mind, he grabs the melodies from the original and I can tell from the start he has heard this song more than 100 times before, I can hear how this song is probably really close to his heart, its such a confident cover with such contrast in style and small amounts of unique character sprinkled lightly all the way thru it.
This piano piece by Leila covering Aphex Twin to me rips away at the original and gets to the core of it all, almost like a psycho analytical reinterpretation of how Richard D. James felt when he made the basic parts for the original song. One thing Leila did which is hard to match it that the tensity is almost matched to the original which would make any drill n’ bass fan fall to their knees and it was all done here by only piano.
Pivot was one of the highlights for me during the Warp 20 year show, their live show was consistently innovative and kept my attention. They picked a hard cover to mess up, its Grizzly Bear’s Colorado which has a great vocals in it, the synths they added at the 3 min mark are a complete treat and really takes this song to a new level compared to the original.
My boss/friend Sam Valenti IV is a big supporter of Gravenhurst and turned me onto them back when I worked in the actual Ghostly Office years ago, I think he’d fully support this cover of Broadcast, it has all the signature Gravenhurst elements of guitar picking accompanied by a soft voice.
Since the success of the first exclusive FREE EP that we did on ISO50 I asked for some musicians for more tracks of covers and edits.
Synth Pop guru D. Gookin takes our middle school favorite teen classic single 1979 by Smashing Pumpkins to a raw fantasy land of where Dan Deacon, Luke Vibert and Tortoise collaborate to do our bidding.
The Worst Friends duo take the gentler side of M83 and nudge it just enough to open up the track a tiny bit more, kind of like a bright break in the clouds to the originals cloudy day.
Everyone knows Snap, if you haven’t then go to a gym or club and give it about an hour during peak time and it will come on the speakers, I promise. Mux Mool switches gears and takes this roller skating rink classic and runs it thru the arcade and struts down the street with it while saying hi to all the ladies, a definite head nodder for the underground collectors.
Jerome Covington is new to the blog, a musician that I met at a bar while I was djing over a year ago, he did this cover for us at Moodgadget and its still a favorite to put on because it might be one of my favorite songs from when I was a little. The tempo of the original will always feel a bit too fast after you hear this, he added that touch that makes you want sway while you drive down the ocean coast.
If you brought your attention span today then this cover might be one of the more relaxing and rewarding ones, A Setting Sun aka Guardian does a number on Air’s Le Soleil Est Pres de Moi. The dusty howl gradually disperses while the recognizable sounds slowly creep in, it would make any Air fan smile.
I had to scan this Home Entertainment Center out of a vintage magazine for you all, imagine just having that control panel to drool over and look at or it just being part of your interior architecture of your home. I love that there is soo much space used with beige panels, buttons, reels, and wall design, thats what makes a ton of the design in the past more admirable to me sometimes.
Continuing our Dubstep Essential Series which has been exclusively for the blog we have part 2 from Guardian coming in at just over 54 minutes and about 37 tracks which keeps the flow of the mix really fresh.
I love the tempo of Dubstep even if I play it for a friend that doesn’t like electronic at all they always react in a positive/surprised way towards the tracks as something completely new, I mean who doesn’t like good heavy low end and dark spacey sounds that you’ve never heard before every once in a while.
Tomorrow a few friends and I are going for the first time to see BBC Radio 1’s Mary Ann Hobbs DJ some Dubstep at Dub Wars which should be killer. A little about Guardian, he is one of the best Dubstep producers I know, he’s from Detroit but lives now in Brooklyn, he is one of the best Dubstep DJ’s i’ve heard out too because of his range and he peaks out into rowdy tracks at perfect times but doesn’t rely on it and its more about track selection for him, hope to see him play around the US/UK this year.
TRACKLIST A Setting Sun – En el Mes de Agosto (Moodgadget) The Others – Hear Dis Style (Boka) James Blake – Air & Lack Thereof (Hemlock) Ramadanman – Blimey (Hessle Audio) Ike Release – Jenova (Infrasonics) Spatial – 90121 (Infrasonics) Millie & Andrea – Black Hammer (Daphne) Cyrus – Bounty (Tectonic) Loefah – It’s Yours (White Label) Pinch – Gangstaz (Tectonic) Headhunter – Prototypes (Tempa) Skream – Chest Boxing (Tempa) The Bug - Jah War (Loefah Remix) (Ninja Tune) The Bug – Jah War (Ninja Tune) Pressure – Money Honey (Hyperdub) MRK1 – Revolution 909 (Earwax) Guardian – Charm Dub (unreleased) Joker – Untitled_rsn (Tectonic) Martyn – Vancouver (2562 Puur Natuur Dub) (3024) TRG – Harajuku (Tempa) Ramadanman – Humber (Apple Pips) Spatial – 81012 (Infrasonics) Sully – Duke St Dub (Mata-Syn) Ramadanman – Carla (Soul Jazz) Martyn – Everything About You (Tempa) Pinch – Motion Sickness (Tempa) Martyn – Velvet (~scape) Untold – I Can’t Stop This Feeling (Hessle Audio) Ramadanman – Revenue (2nd Drop) Ramadanman – Revenue (Untold Remix) (2nd Drop) 2562 – Love In Outer Space (Tectonic) MRK1 – Borderline (Contagious) DJ Mujava – Township Funk (Skream Remix) (White Label) Pinch – Punisher (Skream Remix) (Planet Mu) Pinch – Punisher (Planet Mu) Pinch – Punisher (V.I.P.) (Planet Mu) Shigeto – Beat It Up (forthcoming Moodgadget)
I never know if the newer generations of music fans like The Police as something other than a drinking game song band. They’re my favorite band of all time, I even kind of have a small little shrine in my room involving Synchronicity vinyl, Sting shirts, DVDs/VHS’s, and 7 inch vinyl, I have no shame. The 1:09 intro in Secret Journey always grabbed me especially when it hit the 0:40 sec mark and I knew the guitar loop was coming.
Little Dragon’s song Feather has be this year’s most dark magic/fantasy sounding indie pop song of 2009, the girls voice has this early 90’s grungy girl voice that has points where she just sounds like she doesn’t care at all about anyone and it comes off almost cold then other times it sounds like she has David Bowie arm on her shoulder and she’s singing to make it on the Labyrinth 2 soundtrack which would be amazing!
Without ever hearing J Dilla or Dabrye things like Taken By Trees song structure would never make sense to me but now I love this kind of Jacob’s Ladder unraveling sound, if you need another visual then try this its like watching some vintage cartoon with a car driven by a hippo with a tiny hat with the X band-aid on the tire rolling over each rock on a bumpy road.
I’m not sure if the “dance mix” will ever go away in the indie world or if its even frowned upon yet, it definitely helps if you want to play a song that you like to a group of friends that want to go out but don’t want them to be bumped out by your good yet sad music.
The Police – Secret Journey
Little Dragon – Feather
Taken By Trees – My Boys (Animal Collective Cover)
Mayer Hawthorne has been rocking it everywhere recently, both Justin Timberlake and John Mayer have said over twitter that they love the record. The funny thing is that its on Stones Throw and I think it was just suppose to be a fun/joke record at the beginning. All the smaller hype started when he released a clear red 7 inch heart shaped record that was a great unique merch piece that definitely caught my eye then the major hype hit when iTunes picked him up as the free single of the week and then everything just spun out of control for him in a good way. Don’t get me wrong, I love it and I love this “Maybe So, Maybe No” song, its so catchy and I can probably sing it after only hearing it 3 times, just such a ballsy record to make, I can’t even imagine making a whole motown record today, definitely takes some guts and Hawthorne couldn’t of done a better job in my opinion.
The man behind Midwest Product and PostPrior has kept the torch lit for us instrumental electronic indie rock fans by making music under the name Ben Benjamin. The sound of his song Sideways Cerebus is pretty fascinating to me because the beginning sounds like Midwest Product or an electronic version Mercury Program to me busting thru the ceiling of what they use to do and taking it to another level when the piano comes in, it almost has this Telefon Tel Aviv feel after awhile but without the huge lovely whale sized synths surrounding you, just for the record “huge lovely whale sized synths” are a good thing I just couldn’t think of a bigger sized object, i’ve already used Ocean liner recently.
I probably will never stop posting IDM on this blog, it always takes me to a fantastic and aesthetically pleasing place in my head. One of the guys that I do keep posting about is o9, he was a pretty big unsung hero even among the IDM followers, probably because he never released on a netlabel which was a pretty popular thing to do for an IDM producer back then which was just a label giving your music away for free on their site. Notice the precisely placed static in this song, is that intentional?
What a name to pick Porn Sword Tobacco, its like he was choosing his name out of a hat that contained key words from an old Monty Python script, if you like this song collaboration of piano and guitar than check out older Bibio or Canyon Country.
I know i’m not the person that should be writing this since some of you who follow the blog sometimes have to snowshoe/pull your hair/wade through my odd writing style, but I just need to get all this off my chest. It started off with this Facebook post I wrote because I was just so bothered after putting on MTV for the first time in I don’t know how long:
“Took a peek at the MTV’s music video awards tonight to see if pop music has stepped it up but still no luck at all especially instrumentally, christ! What do they do with their money? Big time creativity/musicianship/entertainment fail. Let’s just hope people like Fever Ray, Matthew Dear, Atlas Sound, SVIIB, Erlend Oye, and Benoit Pioulard keep pushing forward because that was embarrassing to watch.”
I keep seeing all this among friends kind of “press” on Memory Tapes and a ton of remixes by him so I bought his Seek Magic LP to see if I could find something I like and i’m not so surprised I found a couple great tracks. The one that stuck the most with me is Swimming Field, its full of airy slow melodies and builds to an outro with these huge lo-fi drums, woodwinds, and a fantasy spaceship sound, I know it doesn’t sound that good of a description of something you’d want to hear but i’d suggest you give it a listen.
The Beat Konducta needs to do a soundtrack stat, give the man a cool mill., what are you movie directors doing not hounding this guy for music daily.
Reggie Dokes was brought to my attention by Tom Croose a few weeks ago and I just got around to listening to his catalog. The sound of Chicago Pimp might actually define what I love about calssic sounding House music, it has that militant kick that has a ton history behind it from the Detroit and Chicago original heads, a looped key melody thats stripped down, these stretched out open ride cymbals and hi hats, and this gradual feeling that the song is taking over the space you’re in. All these together is a recipe for what makes a huge Detroit crowd lose their minds without yelling, pure body music.
Okay I can’t get enough of Bradford Cox as you can tell if you follow any of the recent music posts but there’s nothing wrong with that, I mean listen to this song from his upcoming Logos album, holy crap its like he’s serving me my nostalgia in a glass and its thick as syrup, I feel i’m just lost in a stare while watching large amounts of pink taffy being made, so lush, HIGHLY RECOMMENDED.