Tag: Mixtapes

Cross-pollination: My old-school metal mixtape on Popdose!

Cross-pollination: My old-school metal mixtape on Popdose!

Blogstuff
My last Popdose mixtape (five-star jazz) seemed to go over pretty well on Popdose, so I thought I'd mix it up this time and delve into my first true love -- heavy metal. This mixtape focuses on the metal that was burned into my brain during its formative years. So it should come as no surprise that I included Iron Maiden, Judas Priest, and Metallica among others. So bust out that denim jacket and head over to Popdose now to check out my metal mix. Because it's what Dio would want you to do. But just before you do, as a super-special bonus here's one of the tracks that very nearly made the cut. It's the first track from Anthrax's blistering 1990 album Persistence of Time -- "Time."
Gray Flannel Mixtape: Power Pop for Now People

Gray Flannel Mixtape: Power Pop for Now People

Music
Ask a dozen people to define the term "power pop" and you'll likely get a dozen variations of the same concept. For my part, any music with killer melodies, crisp songwriting and arranging, and (usually) big guitars probably qualifies. Or to get more specific, here's what the All Music Guide says: Power Pop is a cross between the crunching hard rock of the Who and the sweet melodicism of the Beatles and Beach Boys, with the ringing guitars of the Byrds thrown in for good measure. Yeah, that's about it. So anyway, power pop probably offers more value for your listening dollar than any other style I can think of. Here is but a handful of some of the most choice power pop ever committed to tape. 1. Nick Lowe, "So It Goes" (from Jesus of Cool, 1978) — Power pop aficionados will recogn
Gray Flannel Mixtape: The Best Songs of 2010

Gray Flannel Mixtape: The Best Songs of 2010

Blogstuff
Yup, it's that time again!  Before I roll out the annual year-end rundown of my favorite albums, let's take a listen to some of the best songs from 2010.  I've included YouTube clips where possible, since I used Lala last year and got burned. 1. "Them That Do Nothing" by Field Music (from Measure) - I could probably populate this whole list with songs from Field Music's third studio album.  Instead I'll just highlight the first single from it and we can all revel in its pure pop perfection.  Well done, Brewis brothers, well done indeed. 2. "Doin' It Again" by the Roots (from How I Got Over) - If there's a case to be made for why sampling can work so well in hip hop it's this track, which brilliantly weaves the Roots' own composition with John Legend's "Again".  It's the standout
Listening Booth – Van Halen, “Crossing Over”

Listening Booth – Van Halen, “Crossing Over”

Listening Booth
This track won a coveted spot on one of my mixtapes back in 2007, and I'm bringing it back again.  It's a gem of a song from the Sammy Hagar era of Van Halen, although you wouldn't know it from how it was marketed (it wasn't).  It's the brooding and emotional "Crossing Over", a b-side from the Balance album. The whole song is very atypical of the era, which makes sense since it was written by Eddie while David Lee Roth was still in the band.  But to his credit, Sammy does a fine job here.  The payoff is the extended outro/fade. Here's "Crossing Over", via YouTube.
Gray Flannel Mixtape: The Best of ’09

Gray Flannel Mixtape: The Best of ’09

Music
Before I unleash my awe-inspiring year-end album wrapup, I thought I'd share with you a mixtape featuring ten of my favorite songs from 2009.  The only restriction I'm placing on myself here is that I won't be double-dipping from any artists, although some could have easily taken up half this list.  And away we go! (more…)
Gray Flannel Mixtape: The mellow side of prog

Gray Flannel Mixtape: The mellow side of prog

Music
To no one's surprise, last year's round of Rock and Roll Hall of Fame inductees included not one progressive rock act.  This despite the millions of albums sold, the countless musicians inspired, and the long-lasting impact of the genre's best.  Hell, can anyone under 50 even name two Dave Clark Five songs?  Yeah, me neither. But to be fair, I can understand why someone not very familiar with prog rock might be inclined to write it off as so much boring instrumental wankery and bastardized classical music pastiches.  But to paint an endlessly rich style of music with such a broad brush is not only lazy, it's downright inaccurate.  So to show that prog ain't all clinical sweep arpeggios and no heart, I've put together a mixtape to showcase the gentler side of the genre. What we've got
Gray Flannel Mixtape: Seinfeld songs

Gray Flannel Mixtape: Seinfeld songs

Music
These days it's commonplace for music to function as an integral part of a television show; think Grey's Anatomy, Smallville or Dawson's Creek. With Seinfeld, not so much. Nevertheless, there are more than a few classic moments during the series that can be called to mind with just a few notes. With that in mind I give you the Seinfeld Songs Mixtape. The following songs were played on at least one episode of Seinfeld, which started featuring much more non-original music during its last few seasons. There are numerous instances of songs being sung by characters on the show, but unless at least a small clip of the song was played or performed, they don't qualify for my mixtape. "Desperado" and "Witchy Woman" (Eagles), heard on "The Checks" - Here's a classic rock two-fer. "Desperado" ...
Gray Flannel Mixtape – Desert Island #1s

Gray Flannel Mixtape – Desert Island #1s

Music
I'm not sure what the origin of the whole "desert island" thing is when referring to music, movies, and other stuff you really like. Why not a tropical island? That one Tom Hanks got stuck on in Cast Away seemed pretty nice, didn't it? Oh right, the point. So apropos of nothing, I recently participated in a fantasy draft on a favorite message board of mine. But instead of drafting a sports team, we picked from a list of every song that has ever reached #1 on the Billboard Hot 100 chart, now in its 50th year. The only catch was that each team had to select at least two songs from each decade ('58 - '69 was lumped together). That made things interesting, because the pickings for truly good #1 songs started to get real slim starting in the 1990s. Overall I'm pleased with my team,...
Gray Flannel Mixtape – 10 Classic B-sides

Gray Flannel Mixtape – 10 Classic B-sides

Music
Looking back, mixtapes sure were a pain in the ass to put together. But man, were they fun. So for just a minute, let's imagine iPods don't exist (I know, scary) and we are putting together a new one. The ground rules for the songs on this mixtape are: Each song was released as the B-side of a commercially available single. The songs did not appear on a regular album (at least not at first). No more than one song per band. I must like the song (the critical part). "Total Eclipse" (Iron Maiden) - Over the years Iron Maiden has compiled what is probably the strongest collection of B-sides in heavy metal history. This one nearly made it onto the group's seminal 1982 album, The Number of the Beast, but was left off and instead included on the "Run to the Hills" single. Th...