Best Summer Road Trip: Songs to Sing to

Sunday, August 17th, 2014 at 9:08pm by Will Moreland

An early start – breakfast at some little place roadside. Windows down. Pedal down. Running down the horizon. Chewing up the road. The world rolling by the window; the sights, the smells, the whoosh of the traffic … Who can't read a map? Who doesn't know their left from right?! Yep. We can think of very few things in life which offer as much pleasure as a summer road trip.

But central to the success of any road trip, we think you'll agree, is the music. You can't be bickering about which radio station to listen to all the way there, settling on one just as you loose its signal. No. A playlist is what you need. If not one created democratically – then a pre-made playlist. A pre-made playlist like this one, for example …

"Best Summer Road Trip: Songs to Sing to" features the likes of the Doors, Van Morrison, Norman Greenbaum and Black Rebel Motorcycle Club on what is a collection as eclectic as it is brilliant. Perfect road music if ever we heard it … even if you are lost because you-know-who can't read a map.

Rockin' Train Songs

Sunday, August 17th, 2014 at 9:05pm by Will Moreland

Some artists – a la David Bowie – fancy themselves as space travellers. Many musicians are obsessed with the road – like Bruce Springsteen. For others, nothing can beat the humble train. The train is their muse. The train is the subject found chugging its way through so many of their tracks.

Rockin' Train Songs is mixtape celebrating the best music dedicated to the railways – and particularly life on the wrong side of the tracks.

From Papa Lightfoot's Mean Old Train and Hank Spurling's Box Car Blues, to Danny Reevers' I'm a Hobo and the Miller Brothers' Loco Choo Choo – via songs by Hank Davis, Johnny Waleen, Sonny Anderson and many more – these are the greatest tracks about trains ever recorded. Over 20 tracks, in fact. A diverse, hugely entertaining playlist. Great storytelling. Great music. A must-hear

INDIE Guide (August 2014)

Sunday, August 17th, 2014 at 9:03pm by Will Moreland

Calling all seekers of new music: come rest your weary ears. Ole Pappert has found all the best indie released in the month of August, and bundled it together in one top-drawer mixtape.

INDIE Guide (August 2014) is full of, "More fresh indie tracks to help you bear the summer heat." Ole's favourite tracks come courtesy of Dry the River, Angus & Julia Stone and Cold War Kids, to name just a few.

We'd add to that a banger by the Presets, a bubbler by Jamie T, and an absolute beauty by alt-J. Standout songs, each of them. This is a smart, succinct collection of new music. Super stuff.

Soul Drops!

Sunday, August 17th, 2014 at 9:03pm by Will Moreland

Bristol is a proper music city. A place steeped in musical history, full of amazing venues, exciting artists working in every conceivable genre – not to mention artists working on conceiving the next new underground genre. So when the man behind the Bristol Funk blog puts together a mixtape and says it has "plenty of kick-ass grooves" – well, we pay attention. "Soul Drops Vol. 1," he explains, "is all sweet surrender."

A lean and tasteful collection of songs, it features such soul luminaries as Betty Harris, Tammi Terrell, Barbara Lynn and Baby Huey & the Baby Sitters … First-class mixtape making from a first-class mixtape-maker.

It All Keeps Coming Back in the Morning

Sunday, August 17th, 2014 at 9:00pm by Will Moreland

Joanna Montgomery has put together a mixtape for the morning after the night before. Perhaps you've woken up a little bleary-eyed, a little lightheaded, with one of those existential hangovers. Perhaps you haven't woken up alone. Perhaps you and your friends haven't even gone to bed at all. Whatever last night brought, this playlist ensures the morning is filled with soothing sounds.

Sip coffee to the Kinks. Serve bacon with Morrissey (but don't tell him). Peruse the newspapers as you listen to the Polyphonic Spree. Go back to bed with Rihanna, Katy Perry and Bright Eyes. Over 40 tracks – spanning more than four hours – guaranteed to make morning the best-sounding part of the day.

Born To Huff and Puff

Sunday, August 17th, 2014 at 9:00pm by Will Moreland

Born To Huff and Puff is an interesting take on the running playlist … Think of it as a collection of tracks for the reluctant runner. While most jogging mixtapes focus on high-octane, high-BMP music – often dodgy dance music, it has to be said – this one takes a more melodic, mellow approach to motivation.

"This a playlist for those of us who are trying to run," Tony Campbell writes. "A soundtrack to the huffing, puffing and general uncomfortable sweatiness of physical exercise. There will be no 1000 BPM songs. Just nice, happy tunes with interesting lyrics."

Said happy tunes with interesting lyrics are provided by Pulp, Richard Hawley, Primal Scream, Belle & Sebastian … Who, not what you'd call athletic people themselves, would probably very much approve.

I Was A Teenager In The 90's

Monday, August 11th, 2014 at 6:23pm by Will Moreland

Spin Doctors, the Rembrandts – Terrorvision! Memorable names for any 90s teen. Okay, admittedly, they're not the best musical representatives from the decade, but they're sure to bring a back a flood of memories: Boy Meets World and Clarissa Explains It All. Jennifer Aniston's hair. Mood rings – friendship bracelets. MSN Messenger and Furbies. Titanic, Reebok Classics – Tamagotchis.

Damien Beer is getting all nostalgic for this particular era with a mixture celebrating the good – Beck, Massive Attack, the Stone Roses – the bad – Texas, Simply Red, Crash Test Dummies – and the … well, all the rest.

Whether you were a teenager or not, this is first-class throwback mixtape-making. Over 300 tracks tall, more than a full day long – click play and see what you discover and rediscover. It has the ah-I-used-to-love-this-song factor!

Slow Disco

Monday, August 11th, 2014 at 6:21pm by Will Moreland

What, you may well ask, is slow disco? Well … slow disco is music that's perfect for the pre-party, music that's perfect poolside. It's that music that gets your toe tapping, your shoulders shuffling – that music that pulls you onto the dancefloor.

Think Daft Punk's collaboration with Pharrell Williams, Loose Yourself to Dance. Or perhaps the genius that is Andrew Weatherall and his infectious remix of Moby's Another Perfect Life. Maybe you'd prefer a grooving tune from one of's current favourite DJ-producers, Crazy P. It goes beautifully with Hot Natured' simmering Benediction.

Add to that music by Claptone, Chilly Gonzales, Low Motion Disco, In Deep We Trust and many, many more besides, and you have a grooving mixtape full of deep, funky, booty-shaking disco tunes. Slow disco tunes.

Hits of Jump Blues

Monday, August 11th, 2014 at 6:13pm by Will Moreland

The blues, by very definition, is a largely downbeat music. But a sub-genre known as jump blues – popular from the 1940s onwards and a precursor to rhythm and blues, rock and roll and countless other genres – helped put a spring in the step of that most seminal of guitar sounds. user rummeltje is on educational duties here: " These recordings are old, and many reconstructed from the 78'' records." So there's loads of lovely old vinyl-esque crack and pop.

Artists featured (and check out these amazing names) include: Junior Wells, Little Charlie & the Nightcats, Nappy Brown with the Heartfixers, Big Twist & the Mellow Fellows – many of which found new fans in the "jump revival" of the 1990s. Perhaps there'll be jump revival in 2014 – perhaps this is it! It's must-hear from blues fans and music geeks alike. Super stuff.

Strictly BASS... 60

Monday, August 11th, 2014 at 6:11pm by Will Moreland

"Sixty playlists?" says syknyk. "It seems like just yesterday I made the first one." If we had a hall of fame, syknyk would be one of our very first inductees. No doubt about it. If you're not familiar with the format of Strictly Bass, here's how it works: each month or so syknyk puts together 100 of the best, baddest, bassiest tracks from the worlds of dubstep, trap, electro, glitch, drum and bass, breaks and beyond.

This month it's features original productions and remixes from such electronic music luminaries as Rusko, Zomboy, Skrillex, Dada Life  Flosstradamus – and 2 Unlimited!

If you have any tracks that you'd like featured in the series, syknyk is taking requests. So give him a shout. A first-class mixtape, as always, and a must-hear for fans of bass music in its many and varied forms. Play loud.

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