Whoo it’s hot, huh? And barely June. Despite my hopes at not having to make any of this year’s covers myself, here we are with a patented B.Pearis Type-Over-Photo school of design. (The font, if you’re curious is a Peter Saville original, created for the 1981 – Factus 8 – 1982 compilation EP.) I actually kind of like this one, though. The photo is from the Library of Congress’ Flickr. It was taken at a square dance in Oklahoma around 1939. No one in this photograph was dancing to The Drums, The B-52’s or Air Miami, but if I was to go back in time with a boom box and play this mix for them, I feel pretty positive they’d be frightened. Fear would turn to anger and I’d get beat up or worse. But maybe doing so would somehow end up in stopping Hitler. Which would make it all worth it. That is the power of music, folks.
But I digress. Here’s mix #2 which I think turned out pretty well and is about half-and-half new/old. At one point this one had two French language tracks, but now it has none. Probably because of the whole time travel incident, the USA never had to storm Normandy and somehow those musicians were never born or never became musicians. Looks like I’ve got some paradox-fixing to do.
DOWNLOAD SUMMER FRIDAYS 3.2
- Django Django – WOR
- The Slits – I Heard it Through the Grapevine
- Young Friends – Riverside Kids
- The B-52’s – 52 Girls
- The Drums – Forever and Ever Amen
- Air Miami – Word Cup Fever
- Lulu – I’ll Come Running
- Ariel Pink’s Haunted Graffiti – Bright Lit Blue Skies
- Darwin Deez – Bad Day
- Foals – Total Life Forever
- New Order – The Village
- Beach Fossils – The Horse
- Sea Lions – Good Feelings
- The Aislers Set – The Way to Market Station
- The Housemartins – Sheep
- Here We Go Magic – Casual
- The Soundcarriers – Last Broadcast
- The Radio Dept. – This Time Around
- LiLiPUT – Die Matrosen
It should go without saying at this point that this is an actual mix, the songs segue together despite being separate tracks. So no shuffling, ok? I switched to Mediafire for this one — does it download quicker/easier? Liner notes after the jump.
Django Django – WOR
Second single from these enigmatic Brits who definitely have a little Beta Band vibe going. This one adds Duane Eddy surf guitar to the mix, it’s a great little slab of wax. One of my great disappointments of 2010 was when they canceled SXSW visit.
The Slits – I Heard it Through the Grapevine
One of the great cover versions ever. I’m not sure how much of the concept for it was The Slits and how much was producer Dennis Bovell, but it’s genius. I never tire of this and is pretty much a given at any night I might DJ.
Young Friends – Riverside Kids
This was recorded while they were still in high school, in Phoenix, Arizona, and somehow they came up with a sound’s somewhere between Orange Juice and Haircut 100. They were the real “whoa…who are these guys” moment at this year’s NYC Popfest. Keep an eye out. Their debut, Hella, is worth picking up if you like this track.
The B-52’s – 52 Girls
I think the ’90s version of the B-52’s is what most people think of now, and while they made some okay records then, it was these late ’70s/early ’80s records that are knockouts. Ricky Wilson is one of the great guitarists of that era, a true original, alongside Peter Buck, Andy Gill and Wall of Voodoo’s Mark Moreland (and Johnny Marr if you want to go that late into the decade). I will admit that I have a low Fred Schneider tollerance, which is why I probably love “52 Girls” as much as I do.
The Drums – Forever and Ever Amen
As I’ve written before, The Drums seem to exist basically to answer the question “What would the Pretty in Pink soundtrack have sounded like if it had been produced by Martin Hannett?” “Forever and Ever Amen” is the most obvious example of this, with it’s soaring chorus, icy synths, stabbing guitar and basslines. People may hate them for their stage antics and mouthy interviews, but singles like this speak for themselves.
Air Miami – Word Cup Fever
Hey, hey, hey I’ve got it! Actually I don’t but it’s hard to avoid the World Cup in New York City, where bars apply for temporary liquor licences that allow them to serve 24 hours a day and the chanting from the local Irish bar is louder than my air conditioner. Almost all World Cup Anthems, even those from bands you like, are horrid and embarrassing but leave it to Mark Robinson to do it right by going ironic. This will be the last on the subject you’ll hear from me.
Lulu – I’ll Come Running
Though mainly known in the U.S. for singing the theme song to “To Sir With Love” (in which she also starred), Lulu racked up a dozen or so hit singles in the UK during the ’60s and ’70s. Lulu was only 16 when she recorded this in 1964, only her second single. It’s kinda got a garage rock flavor to it, and that’s Jimmy Page playing the guitar.
Ariel Pink’s Haunted Graffiti – Bright Lit Blue Skies
While much of Ariel Pink’s new album, Before Today, falls within his weird take on early ’80s soft rock, this is more like ’60s psychedelia. There’s probably too many ideas on this album — sure to get Best New Music next week on P4K, it just reeks of it — but luckily more of them are great than not.
Darwin Deez – Bad Day
What a great opening line: “I hope that the last page of your 800 page novel is missing.” A bitter breakup song, yet it’s totally a bouncy little pop song. Darwin Deez has basically been ignored in America — perhaps his questionable fashion sense is a turnoff — but the album is pretty irresistable.
Foals – Total Life Forever
One of the few groups I’ve ever seen puke onstage. Where their first album was all mathy angularity, Total Life Forever has…um… soul? I think it’s amazing. There’s a kind of big Trevor Horn vibe to it — listen to the drums on this song — but it’s funky and genuinely danceable. Foals used to be easy to like hard to love. Not so hard this time out.
New Order – The Village
One of my favorites from New Order’s Power Corruption and Lies. Like almost all the songs on this album, it’s only two chords. But the arrangements keep it interesting. The ending’s a bit tricky though, especially for DJs, as it just crashes into “586.” My advice: just fade it out.
Beach Fossils – The Horse
Beach Fossils have a little of of New Order’s style — favoring single notes over chords that snake around with the bass — but have, in the last year, really figured out their own sound which carries you through the whole album. And probably fearing painting themselves into a corner, new songs at live shows are already expanding and varying their style. If they can manage to keep a drummer, I think they’ve got a future.
Sea Lions – Good Feelings
Along with Young Friends, Oxnard California’s Sea Lions were the discovery of NYC Popfest 2010. They kind of look like they formed at the local youth center, but their spazzy, sparkling surf pop is pretty ace.
The Aislers Set – The Way to Market Station
With Henry’s Dress and, later, The Aislers Set, Amy Linton was the sound of Slumberland Records in the ’90s and early ’00s, and has proved highly influential on the label’s new crop of bands. Listen to “The Way to Market Station” and you can building blocks of Crystal Stilts sound. There’s a timeless quality it, and I have little doubt it will still sound awesome in 2020.
The Housemartins – Sheep
Perhaps the ultimate in bouncy guitar pop laced with a poison pen. Pretty sure most people who listened to them never paid any attention to the lyrics. At least in America. Their debut, London 0 Hull 4, is pretty flawless though I could see see how the sprightly melodies could get on some’s nerves. “Sheep” is one of their best.
Here We Go Magic – Casual
Much like with MGMT, the second album from Here We Go Magic is a decided left turn from their debut. This song is the most accessible on the record I think and kind of makes me think of Grandaddy. It also makes me think of forgotten ’80s comedy The Wild Life which was Cameron Crowe’s attempt to go to back to the Valley for more Fast Times. “It’s Casual” was it’s failed catchphrase.
The Soundcarriers – Last Broadcast
Do you miss Stereolab? Wish that Broadcast was still making records like The Noise Made by People? Maybe you should check out The Soundcarriers, who at times sound so much like those two bands it borders on ripoff. But spending a morning with the album on higher than usual volume, I’ve come to the conclusion that they’re doing their own thing and am glad to have heard it.
The Radio Dept. – This Time Around
My favorite song on their great new album, Clinging to a Scheme. I prefer their songs like this, that are a little more like their first records than the more balaeric number on the record. But it’s all good. Dig the amazing bassline on this one.
LiLiPUT – Die Matrosen
All due respect to Barry Manilow and Peter Bjorn & John but this is the greatest songs to ever prominently feature whistling. (I also like Tenpole Tudor’s “Wunderbar” and XTC’s “Generals and Majors”). And one of the great lost postpunk singles. You would think whistling AND saxaphone would be mood killer, but these Swedish ladies knew how to use them.