Summer Mixtape Vol. II

August 11, 2009

It’s time for another mix tape. Here’s what we’re listening to:

Friendly Fires – I’m Good, I’m Gone (Lykke Li Cover)
Passion Pit featuring Ellie Goulding – Sleepyhead (Starsmith Remix)*
Yeah Yeah Yeahs – Hysteric (acoustic)
Grizzly Bear – Ready, Able
Blue Roses – I Am Leaving
Peter Bjorn and John – Young Folks (featuring Kanye West)
Phoenix – Girlfriend
Bibio – Lover’s Carvings
Kid Sister – Right Hand Hi

*Just a great remix with radically altered vocals. Ellie Goulding (of no prior fame really) has a sharp and delicate voice that seems on the precipice of cracking. The ocean of synth is pretty much opposite the “organic” instrumentation of recently written-about “Let The Beat Build.” Without a doubt this is where pop music is moving [back?].

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The extra credit…

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Summer Sounds Mixtape I

June 25, 2009


More than any other season, summer seems to naturally grow into its own soundtrack. This kind of natural association that forms between a track or album and a time was the primary motivation for this blog when it began. I really can’t explain why summer is the most likely season to become its own musical genre, maybe it’s major chords, or maybe it’s just sunshine.

So here it is, with as little pretense as possible, after all, a mixtape like this makes itself.

Grizzly Bear and Dead Prez – Two Weeks of Hip-Hop (The Hood Internet Mash-up)
Dirty Projectors – Stillness is the Move
YACHT – Psychic City
The Hundred in the Hands – Dressed in Dresden
Phoenix – Lisztomania (Classixx Remix)
Passion Pit – The Reeling
Santigold – Lights Out (Tepr Emo Remix)
Kleerup featuring Lykke Li – Until We Bleed
Camera Obscura – French Navy
St Vincent – The Party
Yeah Yeah Yeahs – Heads Will Roll

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It’s that time of the week again when we take a look back at songs that you forgot your affection for, and we grasp backwards into time to remember what has outlived its hype. So stop hitting refresh on elbo.ws and take a minute to look back, but not too far.

This week’s selection is perhaps the most true of this segment’s intention; the mostly meteoric rise and fall of Girl Talk remixes and his attention-deficit recordings has become so 2008. While mash-ups and electronic remixes are the dominating medium of Hype Machine tracks today, we’ve started to move away from the name-as-many-samples-as-you-can ephemeral novelty of Girl Talk. They’re fun, but did you really expect to still be listening to Feed The Animals with the regularity of last Fall?

The hundreds of remixes of “Lisztomania” and “The Reeling” are great for squeezing more juice out of already great summer tracks, but will these archetypes outlive their originals?

Grizzly Bear – The Knife (Girl Talk Remix)

CSS – The Knife (Grizzly Bear Cover)

Just came across this beautiful, yet unofficial, video to the new Grizzly Bear single “Two Weeks.” It reminds me of my own dusty memories of Le Ballon Rouge and makes me want to find the box that the book is buried inside. The images of the extraordinarily rotund red balloon, and its fat rope for a string, are so familiar that they feel like a part of my own childhood. Plus, I used to dress like that.

Wait… I still dress like that.

Pitchfork says: “It’s not afraid to be pretty; unapologetically retro and baroque, “Two Weeks” sort of crawls by like a gloriously ornate float in an Easter parade.”

I wouldn’t compare it to an Easter float, but I would say I’ve never enjoyed Grizzly Bear this much.

The rest…