To The Maxx


new years revolutions
January 1, 2008, 7:44 pm
Filed under: music, Uncategorized

Every year on New Year’s I make a mix of some of my favorite music from the previous twelve months. In past years I’ve made copies for a small number of people. But this year, as I now have this blog, I thought it would be nice to put the mix online for all.

This is not a ranked list of the best songs of 2007. It is a two-disc mix of a whole mess of songs from 07 that moved me in some way. Do enjoy.

Happy 2008!

DOWNLOAD MP3:
NEW YEAR’S REVOLUTIONS – PART ONE (1:19:40/91.2 MB/160 kbps)

1. Hello Stranger “Big Boots”
AC/DC as fronted by a female Bon Scott.

2. M.I.A. “Paper Planes”
A sample of “Straight To Hell” by The Clash + the chorus from Wrecks-n-Effect’s “Rump Shaker” + gun sound effects = the song I danced hardest to in 2007.

3. White Williams “In The Club”
Cleveland dude is bored, turns on laptop, makes good with the world. Nice T.Rex vibe on this track.

4. Bat For Lashes “What’s A Girl To Do?”
Bat For Lashes is the work of Natasha Khan, of the eminent Pakistani squash-playing Khans. A perfect otherworldly blend of past and future sounds.

5. Army Navy “Saints”
Perfectly executed melodic indie rock. Teenage Fanclub comparisons are inevitable and appropriate.

6. Deerhoof “The Perfect Me”
Every album they put out, there’s a few songs that blow my mind. When I first heard this track, the opener from “Friend Opportunity,” my jaw hit the floor. And every time I listen to it, that initial feeling returns.

7. Gravenhurst “Trust”
Sounds like Morrissey fronting Yo La Tengo.

8. David Vandervelde “Nothin’ No”
Chicago-based guy, really classic songcraft, super fuzzy sound.

9. Blitzen Trapper “Wild Mountain Nation”
Gotta love me some lo-fi Pacific Northwest indie country jams. Reminds me of the pre-”Yankee Hotel Foxtrot” styles of Wilco.

10. Jay Reatard “I Know A Place”
This “semi-acoustic pop single” 7″ is a something of a change of pace for the Memphis based punk/new waver. This is a song so catchy that when I first heard it I thought I knew it already, thinking it was by The Clean or something. But it’s a new song and a great one at that.

11. Chuck and Mac “Powerful Love”
The only old song on here this year, courtesy of Numero Group, the incomparable globetrotting crate-digger reissue label from Chicago. This is a beautiful track from 1970, found on the 2-disc set “Eccentric Soul: Twinight’s Lunar Rotation.”

12. Lavender Diamond “Open Your Heart”
A lovely tune from the wacky Becky Stark and her hippie-ster bande.

13. Miniature Tigers “The Wolf”
Two and a half minutes of great choices. Like a miniature tiger, this song is small but ferocious.

14. Animal Collective “Derek”
Maybe the shortest and sweetest song off of “Strawberry Jam.”

15. AA Bondy “Vice Rag”
Scott Bondy, formerly of Verbena, resurfaces under an alias, unplugs his guitar, listens to americana, sings about drug abuse, asks Jesus for forgiveness.

16. Candie Payne “By Tomorrow”
This girl is fantastic. She’s from Liverpool and she’s my age and her songs are moody and groovy and dramatic… What Amy Winehouse is to 50’s and 60’s girl groups, Candie Payne is to Dusty Springfield.

17. Liam Finn “Lead Balloon”
Mad genius progeny of Neil Finn. This manic track only hints at the craziness of his Jon Brion-esque live shows.

18. Caribou “Melody Day”
The first track from “Andorra,” which i think perfectly fuses Caribou’s live-band, “nuggets”-esque impulses with the electronic composition he’s known for.

19. The National “Mistaken For Strangers”
They keep raising the bar higher and higher. This band should be really huge, but I guess I’m happy they’re just… big. Regardless, i cannot get this song out of my head, as hard as i try.

20. Love of Diagrams “The Pyramid”
Angular Aussie post-punk trio. Perfection to my ears.

21. Ra Ra Riot “Each Year (RAC Mix)”
I love the band’s original version, but this amped-up remix by Andre Allen Anjos raises the bar even higher.

22. Luther Russell “Everybody Falls”
This L.A. guy came out of nowhere for me, but as it turns out he’s been putting out records for over fifteen years. I snooze, I lose. Killer chorus, guy.

23. MGMT “Pieces of What”
This is one of the tracks on MGMT’s “Oracular Spectacular” with a totally bizarre structure. Once they finally build to the harmonious Crosby Stills Nash & Young pinnacle, you expect the song to carry on for a while longer, but it just ends. It’s a ballsy move.

24. Christopher Denny “Time”
Saw this Arkansas dude play in a tiny room in Brooklyn. His is one of those classic old-timey voices that gets me every time. Just cuts to the bone.

25. Radiohead “4 Minute Warning”
Radiohead’s reemergence at the end of 2007 was truly exciting. This track is not on “In Rainbows,” but comes from the bonus disc of outtakes from the same sessions. Why this (and a few others from that disc) didn’t make the album is beyond me. Totally haunting.

DOWNLOAD MP3:
NEW YEAR’S REVOLUTIONS – PART TWO (1:18:41/90.1/160)

1. Stylofone “Loose Boots”
Brooklyn band with swagger and guitar harmonies up the wazoo. They will beat you up.

2. Department of Eagles “No One Does It Like You”
Another project from Daniel Rossen of the great Grizzly Bear. This is a duo and the vocal interplay and harmonies between the two voice are pretty stunning.

3. Coconut Records “West Coast”
Jason Schwartzman’s solo record is great fun and this single prooves that sometimes the simplest melodies are the most powerful.

4. of Montreal “Du Og Meg”
Their “Hissing Fauna” record is my favorite of the year, but I like this non-album track more than anything on the album. I think it’s because the horns remind me of Dexy’s Midnight Runners. Total mimi-masterpiece.

5. Sharon Jones & The Dap-Kings “Nobody’s Baby”
Sounds shockingly authentic, circa ’68. But no, it’s a brand new record. Love the band, love her voice, the production, the graphic design. What’s not to love?

6. Chief “Shaker”
My anthem.

7. Orillia Opry “I Lied”
Another year and another new discovery from Montreal. There must be something in the water up yonder. Anyway, this spare acoustic number really tugs at me.

8. Dr. Dog “Worst Trip”
I resisted this band for so long because of their name. I assumed they were some crappy jam band. Not the case. Total 60’s psych throwback brilliance here.

9. Shout Out Louds “Tonight I Have To Leave It”
In Sweden there’s this little book they pass around called “Writing Perfect Indie Pop Songs That Makes The Kids Cream Their Britches.” The copy that Shout Out Louds have is autographed by The Cure.

10. Handsome Furs “Dead + Rural”
Okay, more Canadians. This is the side project from Dan Boeckner of Wolf Parade and his fianceé Alexei Perry. They make triumphant and creepy music, if that makes any sense.

11. Santogold “LES Artists”
New Wave meets M.I.A. meets Karen O. meets Tegan and Sara on the Lower East Side.

12. LCD Soundsystem “Watch The Tapes”
Finally saw them live this year and they really work hard up there. Totally won me over. I don’t know how that drummer does what he does. You’d think he’d pass out or his arms would fall off or something.

13. Meg Baird “The Waltze Of The Tennis Players”
Singer from Philly’s sinister folk group Espers puts out solo record of covers and a few originals. Max weeps. This exquisite Fraser & Debolt cover is a highlight.

14. Andrew Bird “Heretics”
This guy has come a long way since his work with Squirrel Nut Zippers. His songwriting is top notch, the production a dream. The whole album is at this level of quality.

15. The Felice Brothers “Frankie’s Gun!”
Gotta love those rough and tumble family bands. If Dylan and The Band had stayed in the basement, the output might’ve sounded something like this.

16. Shocking Pinks “Emily”
One man band from New Zealand, used to be in The Brunettes, signed to DFA records. I had only heard this song and then I bought the album and the whole thing is quite good.

17. Bonnie “Prince” Billy “I’m Loving The Street”
The lone original on Will Oldham’s “Ask Forgiveness,” a mini-album featuring covers ranging from Mickey Newbury to Phil Ochs to R. Kelly. But this song really holds its own in the context of those he did not write. The man is that good.

18. Black Lips “Good Bad Not Evil”
This album is so full of life… the perfect soundtrack to getting in fights and screwing. Their energy reminds me of the Make Up… they approach every song as though it’s the single.

19. Robert Francis “Pilgrims”
A deep cut from one of my favorite records of the year. I used to skip over this song, then I actually sat down and listened to it.

20. Land of Talk “Sea Foam”
Last Canadian band, I promise. This comes from their fantastic E.P., which saw a proper release in 2007. Excited to hear what they do next.

21. Yeasayer “2080”
One of the most unbelievable songs of the year. So textured…

22. Deerhunter “Fluorescent Grey”
From the E.P. of the same name. Sort of a mantra repetition thing, but it has a great cold build to it. I didn’t realize it got this chilly in Atlanta.

23. Dirty Projectors “Rise Above”
Dave Longstreth found an empty audio cassette box with no tape inside while he helped his parents move. It was a tape he loved as a kid, the Black Flag album “Damaged.” He hadn’t heard the album in many years, so he set out to recreate it from memory. The end result is much more interesting than an album full of cover songs. This is a record of reimaginings and reawakenings.

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2 Comments so far
Leave a comment

Maxxx,

This fine mix is making getting through my first day back at work a little easier. Lovely lovely. Happy new years to you bud.

Comment by Will

I was just despairing as I sat in Starbucks listening to the sonic swill they peddle, and I ran across your link. Thanks!

Comment by Parker




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