Monday, January 3, 2011

Tim's Best of 2010 Magic Music Mix

It's that time again. Time to release my opinion to the world. Here are my favorite tracks from the previous year. Now, I'm not exactly sure if all 22 songs will fit on a single disc, but I don't want to remove any songs, so here we go.

1. Excuses by The Morning Benders
  • First heard this track when a friend from college mailed me a mix of his recent favorites earlier in 2010. A lovely tune that will, no doubt, open the mix.

2. A More Perfect Union by Titus Andronicus
  • This disc was recommended to me by fellow UMM graduate and KUMM DJ, now Current DJ, Mac Wilson. The opening track is epic, but was reviewed as overly ambitious and a bit sloppy by a lot of music review sites, however I really gravitated to this track. If you're looking for a Civil War concept album, check out "The Monitor."

3. Little Lion Man by Mumford & Sons
  • Overplayed the most, second only to Vampire Weekend (thanks, Honda!), in 2010, Mumford & Sons put together an amazing list of tracks that ended up really making this year one in which I found myself slowly retreating to music that my parents might also like, minus the swear. Plug a banjo in a song and it'll probably make me happy.

4. Wait So Long by Trampled By Turtles
  • More banjo. And lots of it. Trampled by Turtles is one of those Minnesota bands to which I hadn't paid attention until 2010. I always assumed they were a jam band not unlike Umphrey's McGee or Phish, but I was wrong. I was judging Trampled By Turtles by the company they keep at hippie music festivals. Sorry guys. Nice work.

5. Father's Son by Fistful of Mercy
  • Don't be fooled by their Christian-rock-band-sounding name, Fistful of Mercy killed it on the 3rd episode of Conan. That's where I first heard this song. More twang for the mix, only proving my hypothesis that listening to country on the radio during every car ride as a kid would eventually make me listen to country (or some derivative thereof) as I got older. The rest of the disc isn't glorious, but no worries, this song delivers.

6. I Hope You Die by Wye Oak
  • Pretty sure this track was also featured on the mix created by my college friend, Adam Kollasch, but not positive. Both the Maryland State tree and a band from Maryland, Wye Oak puts together a nice little ditty here for us all. Also, hearing this temptress' voice belt out 'I hope you die' makes me happier than it should.
7. I Need A Dollar by Aloe Blacc
  • Recession music! Soulful and simple. You'll be tapping your foot to the beat by the end of it. If not, check your pulse.
8. Sampleame by The Pinker Tones
  • I have no idea what they're saying, but it sure is fun. Pop music from Spain. Not sure why I like this song so much. If it weren't in Spanish, I would probably pass over it, but it is in Spanish, so... I didn't. Just a catchy tune.
9. The Cave - Mumford & Sons
  • More banjo. I know. You're unimpressed with my ability to resist folk music in 2010. Shut up. You know you wanted to go to one of their two appearances in the Twin Cities this year. You're so judgmental. Maybe that should be your resolution for 2011. Don't be so judgmental. Also, CONGRATS to Mumford & Sons for being the first band to deliver two songs to my Magic Music Mix in one year.
10. End Times by Eels
  • The saddest song of 2010. A song about divorce. A weird pick for a year in which I got engaged to the loveliest of lovelies, but sometimes you don't have to relate to a song to enjoy it immensely. That's the case with 'End Times.'
11. Groove Me by Maximum Balloon
  • 2 things. 1) Awesome band name. It's one of those names that my best friend Kyle would think of and I would shoot it down immediately for it's idiocy. But, have some Brooklyn cat name their solo project Maximum Balloon and I swoon. Swoon. Balloon. Another band name that my friend Kyle thought of that I refuse to like: Wicker Basket 2) With TV on the Radio on hiatus for a year, Maximum Balloon filled in where I needed them to for my Sitek/Adebimpe fix.
12. All Of The Lights by Kanye West (feat. Rihanna and a shitload of other people, I guess)
  • Blah. Blah. Blah. We all hate Kanye. Blah. Blah. Blah. He's brilliant. Blah. Blah. Blah. Best hiphop album of 2010. Blah. Blah. Blah. I got goosebumps when the the :27 second mark hits. Blah. Blah. Blah.
13. Fuck You by Cee Lo Green
  • If this isn't on your Best of 2010 list, you're a fucking liar. Fuck you.
14. Animal by Prof
  • This dude should be on Rhymesayers. Open up that record label to party rap. Vulgar? Yeah. That might be his only setback. This was my summer jam.
15. The Book of Love by Peter Gabriel
  • A cover song graces the mix. And it is with grace that this song is delivered by none other than Peter Gabriel. This is one of those songs that could very possibly be the song I first dance to with my new wife in September. The book of love is long and boring, but this song isn't. Check out the other phenomenal track from this disc, "Flume." A Bon Iver cover.
16. Cameras by Matt & Kim
  • This one bangs. I love it more than you know. Matt & Kim return after having a track on the 2009 Magic Music Mix. Catchy indie pop music. I also love the titular line... No times for cameras/We'll use our eyes instead... Good words to live by.
17. Bloodbuzz Ohio by The National
  • On almost everyone's list this year, The National put great song together with "Bloodbuzz Ohio." I tend to sing in a lower key than most, so I also appreciate a song with which I can sing along and not strain my voice to match the lead singer's. I imagined this song being about an immortal vampire born in Ohio with financial troubles. Try listening to it with that in mind. Totally works.
18. Audience - Cold War Kids
  • Heard this one late in 2010 on local radio and really liked it. I tried not to like it because I saw a tweet from someone that was snarky toward the track, but then I realized that I don't care. You're allowed to disagree with me, but I like this song a ton and won't be swayed.
19. The Best Day - Atmosphere
  • Another latecomer to the mix, I heard this one on New Year's Eve, so it counts. Upbeat doesn't even begin to describe this song. Picking a local hiphop superstar may be a safe choice, but this has the same feel as 'Sunshine,' released back in 2007. An extremely happy song every 3 years seems acceptable.
20. Ambling Alp by Yeasayer
  • The strangest music video of 2010 and another track on the Magic Music Mix. I can't help but think this song would've been a Top 40 hit in the 80's.
21. Swim Until You Can't See Land by Frightened Rabbit
  • Along the same lines as the track "Aeon" from last year's mix, this song caught my attention because of the new sound the lead singer delivered. He's definitely Scottish. I can't help wanting to share this song with you because of that crazy Scottish voice. A fairly normal and good song otherwise.
22. Radio-Inactive by Blueprint
  • He says it best in the song: "Rhyme for five minutes straight with no breaks, no hooks, no punchlines, no similes, so I'm easy to overlook." Yep. It's most like 4 minutes and 7 seconds, but you could round up.
That's it. My picks for 2010.

If you'd like a disc, let me know. It'll be a while before I can put them together, but I wanted to release the list today.

And if I don't talk to you before you get a disc... ENJOY.

Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Signs of the Apocalypse... or not.

I think of myself as someone who is technically inclined. Microsoft Office is a cinch. I can navigate through photoshop with relative ease. I even know what those little dials do on the top of sound boards/mixers and how microphones work. But, I had a brief Oh-My-God-I'm-Getting-Old moment when I realized that I have no idea how an RSS feed works. It's been around a while now and I should, at the very least, have some clue as to it's uses and related programs. But no.

Have the relative ease of Facebook, Twitter and all Apple products taken away the need to be technically proficient?

I know some may think this is ridiculous, but this brief lapse in clarity and confidence will no doubt lead me to start reading ludicrous amounts of articles online about various things that I don't really need to know about to avoid any future old-timey debacles.

Thursday, January 21, 2010

The Walking Dead!

I am very happy today. This is why...

Robert Kirkman's acclaimed comic The Walking Dead had a chance of being adapted into a television series by none other than the incredible Frank Darabont (The Mist, Shawshank Redemption, etc, etc.), but negotiations were still underway in August. No longer, however- Variety is now reporting that AMC has greenlit the project!

Not only did Darabont write the show but he's on board to direct the pilot. What did we do to deserve this goodness? He will execute produce the show along with Gale Anne Hurd of Valhalla Motion Pictures and David Alpert of Circle of Confusion.

Working with people like Frank Darabont and Gale Anne Hurd is the right way in for us to deliver a project of distinction in this genre," AMC president Charlie Collier said.

You're damn right it is!

The Walking Dead is a series that started off pretty fantastically but then got bogged down by the fifth or sixth trade and never fully recovered. In its its beginnings however it told some of the best zombie-related stories you could find. Following a former cop as he struggles to reunite with his family and keep a small band of survivors safe, this could make for some truly compelling television. It's still amazing to think that one day soon we'll be able to sit down once a week and see something new from Darabont.

AMC has also approved a show called The Killing, which is based on a Danish TV series (Forbrydelsen). It's a crime drama about a female investigator who "cares more for the dead than the living". AMC is sure set to get darker soon...


Tuesday, January 12, 2010

Tim's Best of 2009 Magic Music Mix

Well, what better way to ring the blog into the New Year with my favorite songs of 2009. Sure, it's a little heavy in Minnesota hip hop and has it's fair share of songs that everyone else liked this year, but I don't think that should be deterrent. Sometimes those songs are popular for a reason. The reason being that they're just really good songs. Every year I read that "[Insert Year Here] was a terrible year in music." This is rarely true. I had a playlist of almost 40 songs that I thought were worthy of the mix, but narrowed it down to 20. That's a lot of music for a mix CD, I know. But, why not cram as much awesome onto one CD as possible. Without any further ado, here is Tim's Best of 2009 Magic Music Mix.

1. "11th Dimension" - Julian Casablancas

2. "1901" - Phoenix

3. "Sleepyhead" - Passion Pit

4. "Fresh Air" - Brother Ali

5. "Tema do Canibal" - BK-One

6. "Warm Heart of Africa" - The Very Best

7. "Ain't No Rest For The Wicked" - Cage The Elephant

8. "Daylight" - Matt and Kim

9. "Percussion Gun" - White Rabbits

10. "Smile" - Eyedea & Abilities

11. "Zero" - Yeah Yeah Yeahs

12. "Purexed" - P.O.S.

13. "Animal" - Miike Snow

14. "Dominoes" - The Big Pink

15. "All In" - Grouch & Eligh (Ft. Gift Of Gab and Pigeon John)

16. "Raindrops" - Basement Jaxx

17. "Stillness is the Move" - Dirty Projectors

18. "40 Day Dream" - Edward Sharpe & The Magnetic Zeros

19. "Laughing With" - Regina Spektor

20. "Aeon" - Antony & the Johnsons

CDs available upon request. BAM! Hello, 2010.

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Survivors and the Zombies They've Survived

Please check out the new Survivors of the Undead Plague website. The new audio clip is tops.

October brings another round of head-smashing, zombie improv as Damian, Troy and myself join Creature Feature at the Brave New Workshop in Uptown, MPLS in a double-bill of epically scary proportions. Check it.

It's gonna get ugly... in an awesome way.

Monday, August 24, 2009

I Cannot Escape Renee Zellweger. She Is Everywhere.

I cannot escape Renee Zellweger. Today alone, I came across two more things on which she is peeing. I mean... I'll give her props for Bridget Jones' Diary and Bridget Jones: The Edge of Reason as she is cast well as a funny looking woman, but everything else? Blech!

I've also realized the first time I didn't like her in a movie. It was Me, Myself and Irene. I really enjoyed that movie... except her.

Here is a horror movie she is doing. At least she is frightened in this movie. That brings me great joy.

This will be the last entry on Renee Zellweger. Though I thoroughly dislike her, I try not to be mean-spirited. I think I've reached the point where I say to myself, "If you have nothing good to say, don't say anything at all."

But, if she ends up in a movie that I'm genuinely excited about, I will be forced to complain again. If she touches any zombie-related films, I will eat her brains.

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

Renee Zellweger Sucks and District 9 Does Not

You've probably heard the buzz about the new sci-fi thriller District 9. You've heard that it is a social commentary on apartheid, aptly set in Johannesburg, South Africa. You've heard that they didn't spend hundreds of millions of dollars like most summer blockbusters. You've heard it's good. Right? Did you hear that it's good? Beacuse it is good. I usually wouldn't blog about a movie I saw unless it really struck a chord and this one does. So did New In Town. But, New in Town struck the wrong chord and I fucking hate Renee Zellweger.

But, I digress. District 9 started well and ended well. The special effects were top notch and I found myself invested in the characters very early on. There have been a rash of great movies this summer and more are set to be released soon (i.e. Inglorious Basterds), but I certainly recommend District 9 for everyone. There is a bit of gore, but it certainly doesn't overshadow the story.

Tonight: Donny Dirk's Zombie Den.