Everyone deserves a second chance, no?
1. Deniro Farrar – Look at The Sky
Farrar’s failure to gain mainstream attention is something that baffles me. His rhymes always have a terrific cadence and the tone of his voice is very pleasant. Here, he turns what seems to be an autobiographical story about his rough upbringing into a hopeful rap ballad. Production duties are handled by Flosstradamus, the Chicago DJ-duo that never disappoints. Check out Flosstradamus’s remix of Usher and Diplo’s “Climax” as it is easily the best version I’ve heard.
2. RL Grime – Treadstone
RL Grime released an EP on 4/20 of several tracks that sound like Timbaland smoked a bunch of DMT. This is one of them.
3. Kool A.D. – Oooh feat. Main Attrakionz
It’s almost jarring to hear the contrast of Main Attrakionz against a rapper who is halfway-conscious while recording their verse (Kool A.D. of Das Racist in this case). I think I would compare it to suddenly snapping out of a daydream into coherence, which is what happens when Kool A.D. takes over in the last third of the song. On a related note, the producer of this song (Amaze 88) can program fire but has probably the most embarassing amateurish personal website I’ve ever seen.
4. Bon Iver – Holocene (Ba$sy remix)
I’ve never understood the big deal about Bon Iver. In my opinion, he copies the schtick of Iron & Wine in a less effective manner. This remix, however, manages to do something that I’ve always found interesting: Ba$sy turns the melodic elements of the song (i.e. the vocals and guitar) into percussive blocks that drive the pace.
5. MellowHigh – Go
Yes, MellowHigh (Hodgy Beats and Domo Genesis of OFWGKTA) was on the mix last week. If you release good tracks in successive weeks, that’s what’s going to happen. The end of Domo’s verse is his trademark affected braggadocio: “And I’ve been at it for a year and a half/ Fast motion, same lane, gearin’ the gas/ And I ain’t fuckin’ with these niggas, all I’m hearin’ is trash/ I fuck with gettin’ paid nigga, all I’m hearin’ is cash.”
6. Purity Ring – Obedear
Purity Ring reminds me of a softer and more human version of Crystal Castles. “Obedear” is tinkling pretty synthpop with a sinister edge lurking below the surface, like a black iceberg.
7. Purple Velvet – For The Love of You (edit)
This is the only track I significantly altered for the mix; I slowed the tempo down by a little over 10 bpm so the transition from the Purity Ring song would be smoother. I found that when I was experimenting, I preferred this song slower: pitching down the soul sample that serves as the elusive heart of the track made the build-up to the full reveal of the vocal line so much prettier.
8. [Interlude] From Frank Herbert’s Dune Messiah
This is a poem that’s from one of my favorite novels of all-time. It’s a desert-themed Zen koan and provides a nice bridge to the last track.
9. Young Giftz – Nino feat. Tree
The drum programming on “Nino” is so ridiculously good that Young Giftz gave producer Tree a feature credit on the song. That’s rare.