Podcast: Secret Santa Track Master Playlist

A few days ago in this post I wrote about our theme for ‘Tracks of the Month’ – basically we were all assigned a recipient to choose a track of the month for (Secret-Santa-Style). Stakes is High! High risk. High Anxiety. What if we choose something they hate!?

We decided we’d select 4 tracks for our recipient, one track of the month plus 3 reserves in case we already knew the chosen track. The playlist below features all 16 tracks that were chosen.

Enjoy and look out for Episode 11 coming … soon.

2020 year end lists

Never has there been a year that we have looked forward to seeing the end of the year more than 2020. For all of the negatives one of the rare bright spots has been the music. As the world went through harrowing times, the artists of the world delivered some of the best albums and songs in recent memory.

We’re going to be talking through our collective top albums of the year on our December podcast. Ahead of that we thought we would share our personal top 10 albums and our favourite tracks of the year, which we’ve created a playlist for all to enjoy!

Nolan

Top 10 Albums

1. Sault – Untitled (Black Is)

2. Run The Jewels – RTJ4

3. Caribou – Suddenly

4, Marlowe – Marlowe 2

5. Phoebe Bridgers – Punisher

6. Royce 5’9 – the Allegory

7. Sa Roc – The Sharecropper’s Daughter

8. Romare – Home

9. Mac Miller – Circles

10. Dua Lipa – Future Nostalgia

Favourite tracks of the year (in no particular order)

Royce 5’9 – Tricked

Aesop Rock – Drums On The Wheel

Phoebe Bridges – Garden Song

Sa Roc – deliverance

Troy Kingi – All Your Ships Have Sailed

Jayda G – Both Of Us

Disclosure – Tondo

Michael Mayer – Higher

Run The Jewels – Ooh La La

Marlowe – Otherworld

Guy

Top 10 Albums

1. Sault – Untitled [Black Is]

2. Caribou – Suddenly

3. Sault – Untitled [Rise]

4. Róisín Murphy – Róisín Machine

5. Run the Jewels – RTJ4

6. Kelly Lee Owens – Inner Song

7. Jessie Ware – What’s Your Pleasure

8. Doves – The Universal Want

9. Laura Marling – Song For Our Daughter

10. The Vision – The Vision

Favourite tracks of the year (in no particular order)

Yves Tumor – Gospel For A New Century

Khruangbin – Time (You and I)

SAULT – Don’t Shoot Guns Down

Róisín Murphy; Soulwax – Something More – Soulwax Remix

Holy Fuck; Alexis Taylor – Luxe

Caribou – Home

Mim Suleiman – Mingi

Katy J Pearson – Take Back The Radio

Doves – Prisoners

Run The Jewels – JU$T

Joey

Top 10 Albums

1. Sault – Untitled (Black Is)

2. Caribou – Suddenly

3. Run The Jewels – RTJ4

4. Laura Marling – Song for our Daughter

5. Phoebe Bridgers – Punisher

6. Kevin Morby – Sundowner

7. US Girls – Heavy Light

8. Mac Miller – Circles

9. J HUS – Big Conspiracy 

10. Sevdaliza – Shabrang

Favourite tracks of the year (in no particular order)

Run the Jewels – JU$T

Kevin Morby – Sundowner

Home – Caribou

Perfume Genius. – Your body changes everything

U.S. Girls – 4 American Dollars

Laura Marling – Held Down

Nilufer Yanya – Crash

La Vita Nuova –  Christine and the Queens

So We Don’t Forget – Khruangbin

Lamp Lady – Sevdaliza

David

Top 10 Albums

1. Sault – Untitled (Black Is)

2. Caribou – Suddenly

3. Run the Jewels – RTJ4

4. Waxahatchee – Saint Cloud

5. Roisin Murphy  – Machine

6. US Girls – Heavy Light

7. Loma  – Don’t Shy Away

8. Jessie Ware- What’s Your Pleasure?

9. Fleet Foxes – Shore

10. Songhoy Blues – Optimisme

Favourite tracks of the year (in no particular order)

Run The Jewels – JU$T (feat. Pharrell Williams & Zack de la Rocha)

Róisín Murphy – Something More – Extended Mix

Arlo Parks – Black Dog

The Weeknd – Blinding Lights

Waxahatchee – Fire

Anderson .Paak – Lockdown

Katy J Pearson – Take Back The Radio

Marlowe; L’Orange; Solemn Brigham – Future Power Sources

SAULT feat. Michael Kiwanuka – Bow

Sylvan Esso – Ferris Wheel

(re) Introducing Nilufer Yanya

I first banged on about Nilufer Yanya back in 2017 when she released her 2nd EP Plant Feed. Last year she released her debut album ‘Miss Universe’ which I completely failed to pick for AOTM … and I am not sure why. In the past few weeks she’s release ‘Crash’ a massive new single and it’s prompted me to reintroduce her to you all.

She’s effortlessly cool. Ballsy. Writes a great tune and obviously surrounds herself with some talented friends.

What do you think?

This is the lead track from Miss Universe …

And here is Miss Universe, enjoy.

New Tracks (TINH POD Episode 5)

Listeners to the podcast version of us arguing will be familiar with the structure of each episode. The 1st section is us ‘reviewing’ an album that one of us has selected as Album of the Month. The 2nd section we all bring a single track as our chosen track to represent a theme. In the past we’ve had Lockdown Bangers, Chill Tracks, Afro-Centric and of course … Disco. On episode 5 (coming soon) we chose the simple theme of ‘new tracks’. Anything that we’ve loved from the past few months … that the others might not have heard or appreciated.

In order to select our tracks we all curated long lists that we whittled down to 4 that we could share on a longlist-playlist.

What did we miss? What do you think?

MAY: No Geography by The Chemical Brothers

 

Time was when you could bank on a new Chemical Brothers album every few years, like a gift transported from some muddy field or mega rave somewhere in the UK right to your cranium. They have spent the last two and half decades making music that often assaulted the senses, and live they’re an act that not only cracks your eardrums, but imprints images in your head that you may not always want to remember: their visuals are memorable, and often overwhelming. Just look at the video above (and add it to Do It Again (Live) for starters) and you get the picture. However, much as I love their music and have never had a Chems album that I’ve not liked, after 2010’s Born In The Echoes (itself a comparatively long five years after 2010’s Further) I wasn’t sure we’d even get another record from them.

Ed left them as a live outfit in 2015, and though visual collaborator Adam Smith admirably filled in – they were still incredible at Glastonbury in 2015, where I buzzed to them in their traditional Sunday night Other Stage slot – it felt like it may be the end of a road for a band that pretty much taught me how to dance in a field. In fact as a band, they’ve pretty much soundtracked – like anyone else of *cough* a certain age – my entire raving lifespan. Exit Planet Dust came out a whopping 24 (yes, TWENTY FOUR) years ago, but it blew my socks off then and still sounds absolutely crisp and fresh as it did then. Named after their previous Dust Brothers moniker (they reputedly nicked it from Beastie Boys producers, never thinking they’d ever be successful enough for it to matter) the album introduced us to many Chemical Brothers staples: acid 303s, growling leads, huge drum fills, sampled vocals, guitar licks and whooshing, discombobulating sounds and melodies. It wasn’t all eye-popping peak-time bangers though, because they have also made a name making more blissed-out tracks (see One Too Many Mornings from that very album) and seeking out collaborations with artists that fitted their unique template.

I say unique ironically, as one criticism through their hugely successful career has been an accusation – lazy, in my opinion –  that they keep making the same record or that they’re unoriginal. I think that would be on firmer ground if a) anyone else consistently sounded like them and b) there wasn’t the great variation within their sound across all their albums. Some of the songs I most love from the last 30 years of electronic music (and that I still own on vinyl) are from the Chems: It Began In Afrika, Come With Us, The Golden Path, Hey Boy Hey Girl, Chemical Beats Out Of Control and The Private Psychedelic Reel (god, I’m getting nostalgic here) and of course their enduring work with Q-Tip, Galvanize and Go (two of my favourite tracks). They sounded amazing, their videos were groundbreaking (I still love watching Hey Boy, and thinking ‘oh, I used to dance there’) and live they were almost unrivalled in the electronic music scene. I’ve seen them live half a dozen times, and they’ve never disappointed. Though I still wish I’d been to Red Rocks.

So the news that Ed was back and a new album was coming left me with mixed feelings. Was it going to be up to their standard? And if not, should you bow out gracefully? We’re not getting any younger, and it’s a long time since we were freewheeling hedonists in the 90s and 00s. Of course, i shouldn’t have worried. Even if there is a little of the law of diminishing returns in play, a few listens to No Geography and it feels like slipping on an old pair of jeans. And I still get that Proustian rush back to some memorable live experiences as soon as those familiar sounds fill the ears. The fact they’ve made it with just the kit from their early albums feels a nice pushback against the over-compressed, quantized, perfectly melodic electronic music we’ve been bred into these days.

I hope it gets them some new fans too. I know they’re touring, and I know I’ll want to go. And part of me feels a bit sad that younger crew today won’t get to hear Hey Boy Hey Girl for the first time back when, and this ‘what the FUCK it this’? Whatever you may think of them, few have lasted as long as they have, and there’s a reason for that.

But more importantly, what do you think?