When it was suggested that we put together our own individual mixes for the relaunch of Mind Equals Blown, in my competitive nature, I said to the other writers that my mix was clearly going to be the greatest. This, in hindsight, may not have been the best move considering I had not confirmed a single song for it at that point. However, that turned out to be my greatest motivator in securing what I believe makes for an excellent mix of songs. The mix itself includes a great range of styles and influences, but in my head the theme is great, independent music. A special thanks goes out to Best Coast, Memory Map, Ports of Call, Midi & The Modern Dance, Annabel and their representatives for making this all possible. These are my recommendations to you, and I hope you enjoy them.
Best Coast – “Boyfriend” from Crazy For You
It seems appropriate now that the fine weather is kicking in to start off this mix with a band that fits this season so well. Best Coast are one of my favourite discoveries of the last year; they are sure to be the darlings of indie record stores everywhere. Their retro-styled girly surf-pop is covered in reverb and backing harmonies, and sounds all the better for it. We need more records like this one.
Memory Map – “Stowaway” from Holiday Band
It came as a surprise to me when one of my favourite musicians of the last few years, Matt Tobey, announced his new project Memory Map. They are a band that brings a smile to my face and provides the musical equivalent of cartwheels in abundance. Matt’s signature noodling guitar work battles with the more obvious hooks of the song while the drums hold everything together. It’s a really charming listen.
Ports of Call – “Transparent Apparent” from Fractals
I really cannot remember how I discovered Ports of Call, but I really wish that I could so I was able to discover more bands like them. This is a great slow-burning track with excellent production values that really bring out their charms. They communicate how they feel without the need for obvious verses and choruses through this record.
Midi & The Modern Dance – “Lucky” from Make It Easy On Yourself
This song is as bare and introspective as they come. The vocals are undoubtedly the focal point, and so they should be because it’s one hell of a vocal performance throughout. Every note sounds carefully considered, and never rushed. Additional instruments are included with each passing second until the band reaches their climax.
Annabel – “The Forgetting of Names and Faces” from Here We Are Tomorrow
One of the more rock-orientated songs of the mix, Annabel go for that indie wall of noise type sound and pull it off so well. While the sing-along vocal is central to the song, the drumming throughout is my highlight; they add a slightly unconventional edge along with those excellent poppy hooks that makes this song so enjoyable.