01. Anything New - BIBIO
How better to kick it off than a song called "Anything New" that is hot as hell? I've got to give credit to my man Sam for turning me on to these guys via his summer mix this past year.
02. Cannibal - TALLY HALL
This lyrically odd song comes from what is hands down, one of my favorite full albums of recent memory, "Good & Evil". Great live show as well. I think it is pretty cool that "green tie" is a friend of mine.
03. Coastal Brake - TYCHO
What a beautifully complex song from an album filled with the same. I can't wait to have Tycho's music around this coming summer as the record was released, inexplicably, in the fall. Dude's background is that of a Graphic Designer, by the name of ISO150. He has a cool blog (LINK)
04. Itchy Fingers - JUNIOR BOYS
Junior Boys, back at it again. I have been enchanted by their sense of space for some time now. Just two guys on the record and live. I put them in the same category as groups like Air or Pheonix, but they are not French. Go figure.
05. Aroused - TOM VEK
I have a new man in my life. . . Mr. Matt Jennings, a.k.a. Loosious Frsh. We co-host a podcast (HotTraxxx&Throwbacks) He showed this "banger" to me. I dig the innovative percussive sounds.
06. How Can You Swallow So Much Sleep? - BOMBAY BICYCLE CLUB
Looking back, it really has been a big year of music discovery for me. I'd say that "I slept on this band for 3 albums", but that would sound dumb, given this song's title, no? In any case, I'm really happy to have found about the band (and the first half of the album this comes from, "A Different Kind of Fix").
07. We Turn It Up - OH LAND
She's pretty and makes fun music, what more do you want? I was able to invite a good friend, Dittmar, to shoot an in-store show of hers at Best Buy, the photos are pretty stunning. (LINK) (I was working on a website for a music program - Check it out)
08. Amor Fati - WASHED OUT
Top chill album of the summer. I spent many hours at the grill or on the hammock zoning out to these jams. Someone should make a video of people surfing to this. . . Oh? They have! (YouTube).
09. Feeding Line - BOY & BEAR
I have twice had the pleasure of seeing this young, talented Australian band perform. I'm really hoping that you'll enjoy this pick and that we'll hear more from the group soon. If you have a chance to see them on stage, do it.
10. Alex - GIRLS
You might remember Girls from 2009's mix. The guy has really grown as a songwriter and performer. I am very excited to see the band live this Spring. I am really into this band and all of their released tunes to date. There is a neat video for the album opener (YouTube)
11. She's Thunderstorms - ARCTIC MONKEYS
This band has been on my list to see live ever since their engery-filled debut. Over the summer I was happy to catch them perform in Central Park. Totally worth the wait!
12. Take Me Over - CUT COPY
The title of this mix comes from the chorus of this one. That's all you really need to know about it. You've heard Cut Copy before. They still make hot summery jams.
13. Punch Drunk Love - TEAMS VS. STAR SLINGER
I really don't know much about either of these DJs(?). It speaks to the ease and potential of music exploration via Spotify. The US launch of the service is most certainly the technological highlight of my year (& that is saying a lot).
14. Pumped Up Kicks - FOSTER THE PEOPLE
Ah, the most ubiquitous tune in my sonic world this year. I was turned on to the track by a co-worker (Brian, of KBC Kids - Kids Hip Hop: Check It!) and have been pleasantly surprised to watch the new group rise to widespread popularity, culminating at a massive Lollapalooza performance (YouTube).
15. Keep Looking Good Looking - VIVA VIVA
Boston "supergroup", at least by my definition, put out a fantastic dirty, lo-fi rock record this year. I can only hope to hear more in 2012. Turns out they recorded a new track at the Converse "Rubber Tracks" studio in my neighborhood over the summer. Here's a video of that (Vimeo)
16. Montezuma - FLEET FOXES
They avoided the often maligned "sophomore slump". This song is proof. Let's hope that these guys can have a long and fruitful career, I am willing to go wherever they'll take me.
17. Hold On (feat. Sampha) - SBTRKT
Where did this album come from? Seriously, dark mysterious beats and a distinct vocal on all of the tracks. I was hooked, great while floating in the pool. (Oh yeah, this was the summer of swimming).
18. Midnight City - M83
I swear that I had included this song on the playlist long before (literally) every publication listed it at the top of theirs. You might not believe me, or whatever, but my track record has been pretty good.
19. Black Gold - FOALS
The only entry on the mix that was not released in 2011. It came out in 2010, I missed it, but was introduced by my friend Calvin who has impeccable taste when it comes to the tunes. You ought to check out his Spotify playlists (LINK) It feels good to have a British band in the fray this year.
20. Made It In America - JAY Z & KANYE WEST
The Roots released a better hip hop record at the end of the year, but I already had the physical cards printed, so this track stays in. (Check out The Roots' beautiful WEBSITE) In the meantime, here are two of the biggest entertainers in the world, kickin' it together. Glad this actually happened.