Adventures in Mixtapeland, Part II

So a few days ago, I talked about the mixtape I made for my friend Matt. Overall I think I did quite well; he’s gotten really into Sparks and The War on Drugs, and he at least liked the vast majority of the songs. Here’s the mix that he made for me (no links to artists because I’m lazy):

  1. Disco Inferno - It’s a Kid’s World
  2. Pulp - Mis-Shapes
  3. Television - Friction
  4. The Fall - The Classical
  5. Built To Spill - Distopian Dream Girl
  6. Can - Paperhouse
  7. Gang Gang Dance - First Communion
  8. Phoenix - Lisztomania
  9. Dirty Projectors - Cannibal Resource
  10. Aphex Twin - Girl/Boy Song
  11. Cocteau Twins - Heaven Or Las Vegas
  12. Au - RR vs. D
  13. Beat Happening - You Turn Me On
  14. Mclusky - Alan Is A Cowboy Killer
  15. Magazine - Definitive Gaze
  16. Bonnie ‘Prince’ Billy - Death To Everyone
  17. Silver Jews - Advice To The Graduate

I was pleased that there were a good number of artists I’d never even heard of before: Disco Inferno, Au, Beat Happening, Mclusky, and Magazine. I’ve listened to albums by Can and Aphex Twin before, but had kind of forgotten about them even though I liked them the last time I checked them out. I had been meaning to listen to Built to Spill, Gang Gang Dance, Dirty Projectors, and Bonnie ‘Prince’ Billy, and the rest of the artists weren’t really on my radar.

After just a few listens, the artists that grabbed me were Disco Inferno, Cocteau Twins, Au, Gang Gang Dance, and Beat Happening. I picked up the Cocteau Twins album Treasure at Second Hand Tunes(buying a CD! Imagine that!) and it’s been in constant rotation in my car, a rare honor.

I wasn’t sure how effective a mixtape exchange would be with someone who likes so much of the same music as I do. The goal, after all, is to expand one’s musical horizons and tastes. In this case, I realized that the result wasn’t so much about expanding horizons as filling in gaps. More than half of the songs on Matt’s mix for me came out over 15 years ago. Many of them are bands that influenced contemporary artists that I like. All in all, the exchange was a success, and I highly recommend trying it out if you have a friend or two with similar tastes in music.