Monday, August 30, 2010


Here lies a mix tape. Treat her like you'd treat one of your sister's friends. 

... Umm, what?


1. Nada Surf - "Electrocution" (Bill Fox cover)
After the "Popular" fallout, only diehards like yours truly believed in this group. I went to see these guys at the University of Minnesota's Whole Club in college and the only write-up City Pages could muster about the show was a short blurb about opener Sondre Lerche (who was a no-namer at the time). It was sad, but thankfully Nada Surf persevered; because of this, our ears have been blessed with a string of consistently entertaining albums.

2. Ryan Adams - "To Be Young (Is to Be Sad, Is to Be High)"
When I first saw Ryan Adams on a late-night show (most likely Conan), I misheard the host. I thought I was witnessing a drugged-out Bryan Adams being interviewed (I somehow missed the performance part). I was so upset about what a poseur "Bryan Adams" had become that when I showed up for my shift at Disc Go Round the next day I was still bitching about the whole sad affair. Man, was I an idiot.

3. Street Sweeper Social Club - "Paper Planes" (M.I.A. cover)
For the uninitiated, SSSC = Boots Riley from the Coup + Rage/Audioslave's Tom Morello. And, like most of their tracks together, this cover is freaking amazing. (Yes, so amazing that I decided to resurrect freaking.... ha ha ha)

4. The Very Best - "Kamphopo"
Afropop at its finest.

5. Beyond (Musab) - "Sunny Days"
Ever wonder what Musab song Slug was referencing on Atmosphere's unforgettable summer anthem "Sunshine"? Here 'tis.

6. Sean Bones - "Let's Do Something Else"
... As long as it involves Canadian brews. (Is it just me, or is Labatt Blue the best cheap lager on the planet?)

7. All Smiles (aka Jim Fairchild of Grandaddy) - "I Was Never the One"
I love everything Jim Fairchild does. He is quite a visionary musician. That said, this one sounds a little like Blitzen Trapper. This isn't a bad thing. Just saying. ... In other words, I just needed something to write here.

8. Chad VanGaalen - "Bones of Man"
Not to sound like I'm stuck on repeat, but ... I love everything Chad VanGaalen does. He is quite a visionary musician. That said, this one sounds a little like Mason Jennings' "Blood of Man." This isn't a bad thing. Just saying, it's a little coincidental.

Let's see, what's a non-creepy way to say I'm completely obsessed with this "femcee" from Chicago? There probably isn't one, so I'll just say this: You will be too after you download this fiery track, which is off her latest worth-every-segment-of-memory free MP3 album, "Woman at Work, Vol. 3."

My friend told me I would dig this band. I didn't, really ... but that's not saying you won't!

11. Cage feat. Aesop Rock, El-P, etc. - "Left It to Us"
Another riveting track from Def Jux's elusive Weathermen collective.

12. The Ataris - "Song for a Mix Tape"
Since they spelled it right in the title (not to mention name-checking Built to Spill in the song), I figured, Why not include it on a mix tape?

An entire live album for free? I can get behind this.

Damn you, Percy Jackson. Ever since I mistakenly saw "The Lightning Thief" in the theater (don't worry, I paid nothing for the experience), the once-intriguing Medusa has just been ruined for me. What a lame piece of s--- that movie was....

15. The Killers - "This River is Wild"
Hey, did you hear Brandon Flowers is putting out a solo disc? Can you also guess who's going to get it on release day and not be embarrassed one bit? This guy!

16. The Posies - "Licenses to Hide" [LISTEN HERE]
From the triumphant "comeback" (not that they ever went anywhere) album "Blood/Candy," which will be released in September by Ryko. This single features guest vocals from Lisa Lobsinger (lead singer of Reverie Sound Revue and one of Broken Social Scene's 12 million vocalists).

17. Wilco with Billy Bragg - "At My Window Sad and Lonely"
I think even residents of the Chicago group's other second homes would've been jealous when the group played a foggy lakeside show here in Duluth at Bayfront Festival Park with hometown heroes Low. I really haven't gone to too many concerts since then. They all pale in comparison.

18. The Watson Twins - "Human"
Ah, yes, fellows devotees of "The Mac."

19. Rob Zombie - "Virgin Witch"
Don't ask, or: It's A-OK to stay in touch with your inner teenager.

Got ADD? Self-medicate (more like exacerbate the problem...) with Girl Talk.

21. The Gay Blades - "Try to Understand"
In totally unrelated news, I just finished enjoying Chuck Klosterman's first novel, "Downtown Owl." If you know how to read (and I'm assuming you do...), I highly recommend this addicting look into small-town North Dakota life. In the '80s, no less. (By the way, in even-more-unrelated news, the first big interview of my career was with Chuck. My writing professor at the time, Deneen Gilmour, had worked with him at the Fargo Forum and urged me to pursue the interview. It wasn't that hard, as she provided me with his e-mail address and phone number. I am forever grateful.)

22. The Roots feat. Jim James - "Dear God 2.0"
I'll admit, I was a little disappointed with Yim Yames' George Harrison tribute disc, but he totally redeemed himself with all the work he did on Ben Sollee and Daniel Martin Moore's gorgeous "Dear Companion." The verdict's still out on this collaboration, though, I'm afraid.

Even though he hasn't had a regular radio gig since he was the program manager at Thunder Web Radio (now KDSU) in Fargo, Budgeteer editor Matthew R. Perrine likes to make mix tapes like he's going to play them on the air someday. This here Mix Tape Appreciation Society is a continuation of SHAKE*YOUR*SHORES, the awesome mix tape series formerly known as "Don't Tell a Soul." Enjoy!

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