I wish I had a theme for this mixer; I really do. Unfortunately, I’m just sitting in my dorm room completely uninspired by any greater theme or calling. With that being said, I’ve been spinning a lot of new tracks lately. So here they are.
1. “Varsity” by Smith Westerns
I may be the world’s largest Smith Westerns fan. There. I said it. I’ve seen them in Chicago twice and in Amsterdam once, and they have never failed to impress me. They just released this new track earlier this week, and it is a magnificent return to what everyone loves so much about them.
2. “17” by Youth Lagoon
Ok, this song isn’t new. But it is good. The melancholy lyrics are gentle and powerful at the same time…and when that beat comes in…well that’s a magical moment.
3. “All U Can Eat” by Ben Folds
The prospect of this mixtape being all new songs is going downhill fast. In this track, Mr. Folds gives us some excellent social commentary. I especially fancy this live version. I think you will too. Unless you drive a Hummer.
4. “Always Like This” by Bombay Bicycle Club
I’m a sucker for any and all British rock music. That’s about all I have to say about that.
5. “Decatur, Or, Round of Applause for Your Step Mother!” by Sufjan Stevens
I’m from little town in Illinois situated right between Champaign and Decatur in the great paradise that is Central Illinois. It’s still, to this day, amazing to me that someone wrote a song about our neck of the woods.
6. “Clear Eyes” by Nico Segal ft. Vic Mensa
It’s a rare thing when you can point to a single song that changed your life. It’s been about a year since I first heard this song. It spurred a revitalization of my hip-hop interest. I honestly believe that these are two of the best musicians in the world today. I’m not afraid to make a claim like that and I think if you watch the video you won’t be afraid to either.
7. “Dirty Paws” by Of Monsters And Men
Folk has certainly nudged its way onto the popular scene over the last couple of years, and Of Monsters And Men has certainly benefited from that. This, however, is no reason to discount their talent. The Icelandic group puts on one of the best live shows I have ever seen, and put out one of the most solid all-around albums last year. I would caution anyone against writing this group off just because they have a popular song in “Little Talks”.
8. “Acid Rain” by Chance the Rapper
If there’s a time to hop on a bandwagon before someone blows up, it is now. Chance is about to become a household name, mark my words. Just listen to the lyrics and you’ll understand why.
9. “Smooth Criminal” by Michael Jackson
Because why not?
10. “Entertainment” by Phoenix
This is the first song off of their upcoming album Bankrupt! and also gives us a more electronic taste of what Phoenix can produce. While it’s a little light on lyricism, the track certainly does have its catchy moments. The music video really is bizarre, though.