Saturday, February 6, 2016

Mux189: Mr. Mux Gets A Puppy

(Full disclosure: Yes, I am Mr. Mux, and since this is early, I do not yet have aforementioned puppy. That comes February 19. Also: This is not a puppy-themed mux, if that is at all possible.)

Download or stream.

Digging into the vault with some older cuts by Caribou, !!!, Boards of Canada, and Radiohead. Some new and newish stuff as well. And after last mux's briefness, this one hits 58:46, but that's mostly because of a nine-minute closer. Well, it can't be nearly as bad as that time I put Fucked Up's 22-minute "ONNO" on a mux.

1. Caribou - Yeti (The Milk of Human Kindness)
2. !!! - Yadnus (Myth Takes)
3. Michael Jackson - Get On The Floor (Off The Wall)
4. Boards of Canada - Telephasic Workshop (Music Has The Right To Children)
5. HEALTH - New Coke (Death Magic)
6. Tortoise - Hot Coffee (The Catatrophist)
7. Radiohead - Bullet Proof... I Wish I Was (The Bends)
8. Shearwater - Prime (Jet Plane And Oxbow)
9. Cheatahs - Reverie Bravo (Mythologies)
10. Wolfmother - Where Eagles Have Been (Wolfmother)
11. Neon Indian - News From The Sun (Live Bootleg) (VEGA INTL. Night School)
12. Brian Eno & Karl Hyde - Return (High Life)

TRT 58:46

Rookies: Shearwater

2016 music: Shearwater, Tortoise

Saturday, January 23, 2016

Mux188: February 2016

Download or stream.

1. Protomartyr - The Devil In His Youth (The Agent Intellect)
2. Beach Slang - Throwaways (The Things We Do To Find People Like Us)
3. Chvrches - Never Ending Circles (Every Open Eye)
4. Veruca Salt - Eyes On You (Ghost Notes)
5. Swervedriver - Last Rites (I Wasn't Born To Lose You)
6. The Mountain Goats - Balance (All Hail West Texas)
7. David Bowie - Lazarus (Blackstar)
8. Battles - Dot Com (La Di Da Di)
9. Prefuse 73 - Now You're Leaving (Surrounded By Silence)
10. Big Grams - Goldmine Junkie (Big Grams)
11. Thundercat - Them Changes (The Beyond / Where The Giants Roam)
12. Jamie xx - I Know There's Gonna Be (Good Times) (feat. Young Thug and Popcaan) (In Colour)

TRT 38:37

Rookies: Veruca Salt

2016 music: David Bowie

Thursday, January 7, 2016

Mux187: Mr. Mux's Snow Day

Download or stream.

Wicked early, but whatever. I've had the sequence for an entire week and nothing new is coming out, so it seems safe enough to release into the wild.

"Depreston" hits way too close to home after my relocation to suburbia, but it's a solid track.

Radiohead's "Spectre" is a million times better than Sam Smith's "Writing's On The Wall." No matter, since Spectre was a crummy movie.

Pitchfork seems to not give a shit about Cheatahs, whose self-titled album is absolutely phenomenal, albeit more like a tour of every style of 90's rock. Their follow-up, Mythologies, has yet to completely grow on me, but they're a fine band that no one seems to notice. Except the AV Club, who are far more reasonable and not concerned with Pitchfork's increasing habit of clickbait "news" and no longer giving a shit about any band with guitars.

I've been massively pissed off at James Murphy lately, hence below. What a giant dick. He not only ruined the legacy of LCD Soundsystem (Sleater-Kinney at least had the wisdom of waiting a decade, though No Cities To Love is shit next to the we're-done-mic-drop of The Woods) but also the wonderful documentary Shut Up And Play The Hits.

Tech note: Audacity really doesn't like it when songs are amplified greater than 2 dB, so "Blown A Wish" might be a bit quiet. The program normalizes a hell of a lot better than GarageBand, though.

1. Butthole Surfers - Who Was In My Room Last Night? (Independent Worm Saloon)
2. Ty Segall - My Head Explodes (Goodbye Bread)
3. Split Single - Never Look Back (Fragmented World)
4. Wilco - Heavy Metal Drummer (Yankee Hotel Foxtrot)
5. Courtney Barnett - Depreston (Sometimes I Sit And Think, And Sometimes I Just Sit)
6. EL VY - No Time To Crank The Sun (Return To The Moon)
7. Radiohead - Spectre (Single)
8. LCD Soundsystem A Relic of a Band James Murphy Said Would End At Their Peak But Decided To Be An Asshole And Changed His Mind - Us v Them (Sound of Silver)
9. My Bloody Valentine - Blown A Wish (Loveless)
10. Cheatahs - Supra (Mythologies)
11. Ryan Adams - Blank Space (1989)
12. Hop Along - Happy To See Me (Painted Shut)

TRT 50:09

Rookies: Butthole Surfers

2015 music: Cheatahs, Courtney Barnett, EL VY, Hop Along, Radiohead, Ryan Adams

Monday, December 21, 2015

Mux186: January 2016

Download or stream.

Early, as promised.

1. Bear In Heaven - Autumn (Time Is Over One Day Old)
2. !!! - Lucy Mongoosey (As If)
3. Jurassic 5 - Quality Control (Quality Control)
4. Chvrches - Lies (The Bones of What You Believe)
5. Junior Boys - Big Black Coat (Big Black Coat) (For JF, wherever you are)
6. Deerhunter - Duplex Planet (Fading Frontier)
7. Protomartyr - Cowards Starve (The Agent Intellect)
8. Wavves X Cloud Nothings - No Life For Me (No Life For Me)
9. Spoon - Anything You Want (Girls Can Tell)
10. Ride - Time Machine (JDK Intro Edit) (Going Blank Again)
11. The Mountain Goats - Jeff Davis County Blues (All Hail West Texas)
12. Waxahatchee - Bonfire (Ivy Tripp)

TRT 45:17

Rookies: Protomartyr

2015 music: !!!, Deerhunter, Protomartyr, Wavves X Cloud Nothings, Waxahatchee

2016 music: Junior Boys

Wednesday, December 9, 2015

Mux185: Mr. Mux Trims The Tree

Download or stream. The choice is yours.

I changed the lineup approximately 27 times, so I figured just to release it into the wild. It's not that I couldn't get a sequence going but I just kept finding better songs. Basically there were at least five different viable versions of this.

Also, apologies that the "Flora > Fauna" into "Pastel Assassins" butt-cut is really intense and jarring. It worked better in my head when they were the same tempo. I tried fading out "Flora" but it's just too short to cut shorter. But how about that sweet transition from the Neon Indian outro into the SFX of the "Puzzles" intro? Butter. Also: No one cares.

The Upstream Color soundtrack is also on my writing playlist (e.g. the roughly two hours daily I spend writing the final Chronicle book, my next screenplay, and a freewrite that's starting to take shape as... something?), and beyond the gimmick of Shane Carruth doing the score, it's actually really fucking good. Glad I picked the track with the shortest Walden quote as its title. He really upped his game with the soundtrack and cinematography since Primer. Let's just hope The Modern Ocean, with all its star power, comes out within the decade.

Oh, right, I'm supposed to be talking about music. Well, I think I greatly improved my sequencing in 2015, and while it'll still technically be 2015 when I do it, I'm sure Christmas will come early in the form of Mux186: January 2016. That is, if your idea of Christmas is a 45-minute-ish mixtape that's whim to my mad-scientist leanings. As for continuing on into 2016, the rules will remain the same, even though I recently routed them when Battles dropped and for a while was completely irresistible. I'll hit Mux200 in summer and am already stockpiling tracks for Retromux 2; hard to do considering that two of the bands on 001 and 100 have broken up, other bands have gone crap, and some barely put out music. But hey, if I have to do it once every four years, I think I can manage. I'm sure a few lite themes might make a guest appearance, like another Rookies. No promises on that front, but barring some cataclysm, expecting two muxes a month as always, lest someone finally gives me a DMCA takedown. And then, shit, I'll just use my secret email list to hit everyone up for their sweet pirate mux action.

1. Ty Segall - Finger (Melted)
2. Wavves - Heavy Metal Detox (V)
3. Beach Slang - Ride The Wild Haze (The Things We Do To Find People Who Feel Like Us)
4. Hop Along - Sister Cities (Painted Shut)
5. Ryan Adams - All You Had To Do Was Stay (1989)
6. Wilco - Radio Cure (Yankee Hotel Foxtrot)
7. Shane Carruth - I Love To Be Alone (Upstream Color Original Soundtrack)
8. Battles - Flora > Fauna (La Di Da Di)
9. Prefuse 73 - Pastel Assassins (Surrounded By Silence)
10. HEALTH - L.A. Looks (Death Magic)
11. Neon Indian - Techno Clique (VEGA INTL. Night School)
12. Unknown Mortal Orchestra - Puzzles (Multi-Love)

TRT 45:00 on the nose.

Rookies: Beach Slang, Hop Along, Shane Carruth

2015 music: Battles, Beach Slang, HEALTH, Hop Along, Neon Indian, Ryan Adams, Unknown Mortal Orchestra, Wavves

Sunday, November 29, 2015

JDK's Favorite Music of 2015

I won't be as minimal as last year, but I'll try not to exceed a paragraph or two. I'm really just a guidepost toward music you might like if you're into the muxes.

Favorite Albums of the Year:

1. Lightning Bolt - Fantasy Empire
2. Battles - La Di Da Di
3. Unknown Mortal Orchestra - Multi-Love
4. HEALTH - Death Magic

I'm getting pretty good at telling what will be my favorite album of the year the first time I hear it. Fantasy Empire has Lightning Bolt sounding their absolute heaviest. It's probably their best - or at least their most consistent - album, and who knows if actually recording in a studio made it better. I sincerely believe that the two Brians would insist on recording this live and wouldn't even bother with overdubs.

As for Battles, La Di Da Di unfortunately falls into the near-identical patterns of Mirrored and Gloss Drop that prevented them from being out-and-out masterpieces. With the exception of "Flora > Fauna," all the good stuff is on the A side. The B side is the same one- and two-minute bullshit experiments that have plagued Battles' albums. Maybe they're making exactly the stuff they want and I'm wanting something else. You can't tell me, though, that "Dot Com" or the limp closer "Luu Le" are even in the same galaxy as the genius of "The Yabba" or "FF Bada." Oh well. Maybe next time.

Unknown Mortal Orchestra gets the Surprise of the Year award, given that I've completely ignored their first two albums. It's a great rock album, a great dance album, and a great funk album. They're like a really weird version of Spoon seen through a dark mirror.

Death Magic finally fulfills HEALTH's promise that, when they decided to go "pop," they made sure to keep the noise. And thank god they're finally making actual songs now, and not just sketches of noise.

Other Notable Albums (alphabetical order):

!!! - As If
Blanck Mass - Dumb Flesh
Deerhunter - Fading Frontier
Donnie Trumpet & The Social Experiment - Surf
Rachel Grimes - The Clearing
Ryan Adams - 1989
Titus Andronicus - The Most Lamentable Tragedy
Viet Cong - Viet Cong
Wavves X Cloud Nothings - No Life For Me
Will Butler - Policy

Another !!! album and I'm pretty sure I'm the only one who still cares. Criminal! They're still making music as good as those first few albums you listened to in the dorms.

Fading Frontier, as I joked to a friend, was "Deerhunter making a Real Estate album." I'll admit that I've only listened to it in full a handful of times, but, as always, it's nice to see the band experiment in yet another direction. It's a little too close to the overt prettiness of Halcyon Digest. I'm a Microcastle and Monomania guy; I don't like the same Deerhunter albums as anyone else.

Rachel Grimes' The Clearing is on my playlist for when I'm writing, so it's racked up a ridiculous number of plays. It's nice to hear a neoclassical album that isn't Max Richter.

Ryan Adams's 1989 is conceptually one of the more brilliant things in recent memory. Too bad it sounds like it was recorded with my $15 microphone, making the whole thing sound like Springsteen playing out of an FM radio.

Brownie points to Titus Andronicus for getting back to sprawling messes. No fucking clue what's going on here compared to The Monitor, but at least there's good rock to back up the ridiculous narrative.

Wavves X Cloud Nothings' (more like Wavves x Dylan Baldi) No Life For Me is the best tossed-off rock album recorded in, apparently, a handful of days. Reminds me of the days of the great, late Jay Reatard's insane output, though Wavves has completely shaved off the noise since their debut.

Favorite Song of the Year - Tie: "The Yabba" by Battles and "Snow White (& The 7 Dwarves Fans)" by Lightning Bolt

In a little under seven minutes, Battles present more ideas in one song than on the entire album. It's a perfect encapsulation of what Battles has become: the best future-rock band to play the amusement-park party for the night before our robot overlords take over.

"Horsepower" might be Lightning Bolt's best single, but this is probably the most ambitious track the band has done since "Transmissionary." While that song gets it point across through punishing repetition, "Snow White" is like Lightning Bolt's best stuff: they freak the fuck out while keeping perfect time. Beautiful chaos.

Other Notable Songs (in order by band, and only one song per album):

!!! - Every Little Bit Counts
Look at the album art for As If. That happy monkey looks like he's been dancing to this song all day and making sweet love to all those bananas. This might be a very close second to "Station (Meet Me At The)" as one of the most instantly-danceable !!! tracks.

The Chemical Brothers - Go
Whenever I hear this when I'm driving, I suddenly feel like I'm in a police chase. Fortunately my 2006 Nissan can't exactly tear up the freeway.

Courtney Barnett - Pedestrian At Best
When I was visiting home for two weeks when this album dropped, I heard it every single time on The Current when I drove somewhere. Every single time. And it's in Guitar Hero Live. And I'm still not really sick of it. Barnett is like the female Craig Finn, at least in terms of garbling syllables to get across a really obscure reference.

EL VY - Happiness, Missouri
I like the crunchy guitar. Part of me hopes this is what the next National record sounds like.

HEALTH - Stonefist
A nice opening salvo from HEALTH to announce their intentions with the heavy rock on Death Magic.

Hot Chip - Love Is The Future
One of the best dance tracks of the year. Brilliant touch to give the melody to a different instrument each verse. Also brilliant to have a rap verse show up our of nowhere.

A Place To Bury Strangers - I Will Die
Okay, now it seems I'm on a permanent noise trip. Maybe it was just a good year for noise, even though familiar acts like Weekend have cleaned up their aesthetic. APTBS hasn't necessarily gone tame, and this song is proof, even if it was just jacked up on the mixer. It just wouldn't be the same without that eardrum-busting fuzz.

Titus Andronicus - Dimed Out
Insanely catchy. It's weirdly intriguing to hear Patrick Stickles run it down in Titus Andronicus's free comp Sorry For The Delay.

Unknown Mortal Orchestra - Ur Life One Night
What the hell key is this song in? How did they make the bass sound like the teacher in Peanuts? And how did they make it possible to dance to it?

Viet Cong - Death
I always give points for ambition. Not only does "Death" go through several movements, but it's also an endurance test for the band. You can hear their physical pain when they finally stick the landing after eleven minutes.

Wavves X Cloud Nothings - Nothing Hurts
Some real wasted potential here. I'm not the first to say that, with a little bit more meat, this would be a perfect track to end a Cloud Nothings album proper. As it stands, it's the best sub-two-minute song of the year.

That's it for this year. Next year? I wouldn't mind some Radiohead.

Thursday, November 26, 2015

Mux184: December 2015

Download or stream. The choice is yours.

Another long one. (That's what she said.) Blame it on a last-minute spin of Ride's Going Blank Again and including the epic "Grasshopper" to top off this Thanksgiving long-player.

1. My Bloody Valentine - Only Shallow (Loveless)
2. Jack White - Lazaretto (Lazaretto)
3. The New Pornographers - Born With A Sound (Brill Bruisers)
4. Spoon - Take A Walk (Girls Can Tell)
5. Sonic Youth - Purr (Dirty)
6. The Rural Alberta Advantage - Drain The Blood (Hometowns)
7. The Microphones - The Moon (The Glow Pt. 2)*
8. !!! - Freedom! '15 (As If)
9. Junior Boys - Over It (Big Black Coat [Advance])
10. Big Grams - Lights On (Big Grams)
11. Deerhunter - Ad Astra (Fading Frontier)
12. Ride - Grasshopper (Going Blank Again)

TRT 54:21

2015 music: !!!, Big Grams, Deerhunter, Junior Boys (2016, actually)

*Nope, this isn't a repeat. I did use an acoustic version of "The Moon" on an earlier mux that I found on the netherregions of someone's P2P shared folder.

Thursday, November 12, 2015

Mux183: Mr. Mux's Time Is Up!

Download or stream. The choice is yours.

PSA: Yes, the opening Ryan Adams track sounds like radio quality. I thought I downloaded a bad web rip, but then I got the album legit on Amazon and, lo and behold, it still sounds like that. So apparently he doesn't care that it sounds fairly shitty. Good song, though.

1. Ryan Adams - Style (1989)
2. TV on the Radio - Winter (Seeds)
3. Dum Dum Girls - Rimbaud Eyes (Too True)
4. Unknown Mortal Orchestra - Extreme Wealth And Casual Cruelty (Multi-Love)
5. Hot Chip - Dark Night (Why Make Sense?)
6. Battles - Summer Simmer (La Di Da Di)
7. The Chemical Brothers - Wide Open (Born In The Echoes)
8. Kevin Drew - You Got Caught (Darlings)
9. Wilco - How To Fight Loneliness (Summerteeth)
10. EL VY - Happiness, Missouri (Return To The Moon)
11. Frank Zappa - Watermelon In Easter Hay (Joe's Garage: Acts II & III)
12. Flying Lotus - The Protest (You're Dead!)

TRT 53:35

Rookies: Frank Zappa

2015 music: Battles, The Chemical Brothers, EL VY, Hot Chip, Ryan Adams, Unknown Mortal Orchestra

Saturday, October 24, 2015

Mux182: November 2015

Download or stream. The choice is yours.

1. Donnie Trumpet & The Social Experiment - Miracle (Surf)
2. Big Grams - Put It On Her (Big Grams)
3. Nao - Inhale Exhale (February 15)
4. Jurassic 5 - Improvise (Quality Control)
5. Telekinesis - Courtesy Phone (Ad Infinitum)
6. HEALTH - Drugs Exist (Death Magic)
7. Kurt Vile - That's Life, Tho (Almost Hate To Say) (b'lieve i'm goin' down...)
8. Tame Impala - 'Cause I'm A Man (Currents)
9. Deerhunter - All The Same (Fading Frontier)
10. Chvrches - Clearest Blue (Every Open Eye)
11. Jamie xx - The Rest Is Noise (In Colour)
12. !!! - Every Little Bit Counts (As If) [off another excellent and criminally-underrated !!! album]

TRT 44:45 (shortest since mid-January!)

Rookies: Jurassic 5, Telekinesis

2015 music: !!!, Big Grams, Chvrches, Deerhunter, Donnie Trumpet & The Social Experiment, HEALTH, Jamie xx, Kurt Vile, Nao, Tame Impala, Telekinesis

Thursday, October 15, 2015

Mux181: Mr. Mux Rakes Some Leaves

Download or stream. The choice is yours!

1. TV on the Radio - Right Now (Seeds)
2. Metric - The Shade (Pagans In Vegas)
3. Swervedriver - English Subtitles (I Wasn't Born To Lose You)
4. Wilco - Random Name Generator (Star Wars)
5. Unknown Mortal Orchestra - The World Is Crowded (Multi-Love)
6. TLC - Creep (CrazySexyCool)
7. Miguel - Simple Things (Wildheart)
8. Prefuse 73 - Mojave Mating Call (Rivington Nao Rio)
9. DJ Shadow - The Number Song (Cut Chemist Party Mix) (Endtroducing... Deluxe Edition)
10. Battles - Dot Net (La Di Da Di)
11. Yo La Tengo - Autumn Sweater (I Can Hear The Heart Beating As One)
12. Ryan Adams - Welcome To New York (1989)

TRT 50:06

Rookies: Swervedriver, TLC

2015 music: Battles, Metric, Miguel, Prefuse 73, Ryan Adams, Unknown Mortal Orchestra, Wilco