1. John Cale & Brian Eno | Lay My Love
I discovered this song through my friend Graham, who performs under the name Miracle Fortress. I was in Montreal for a bit this summer mastering my record and during downtime we'd hang out, play basketball, and listen to records. I love how well their voices compliment each other and how warm and gentle they sound. Funny thing is, I read that things got so heated during the recording sessions that Eno actually tried to attack John Cale with chopsticks!
2. Kylie Minogue | Aphrodite
I found the new Kylie album lying around at my label's graphics department and ripped it to my iTunes while we were working on layouts for my own album. This is the title track and it ended up becoming my go-to summer anthem. I defy anyone to put this on and not want to start dancing or doing step aerobics at the gym. The entire album was always first on deck when I'd go out for a run and get a break from working in my studio. After about a month I broke down and ended up buying the vinyl as well.
3. PS I Love You | 2012
PS I Love You has been my favourite band for well over a year and I'm also currently obsessed with the concept of the year 2012. Basically this is like my two favourite things teaming up to make my ultimate favourite thing. It's like the peanut butter and banana sandwich of my music collection!
4. Janet Jackson | Control
I can listen to this song like nine times in a row and still not understand how Jimmy Jam and Terry Lewis managed to create such a crazy rhythm track. It makes me feel hopelessly inadequate from a technical perspective, but I guess if I could pan drums this well I'd probably be producing songs for Janet, not fumbling around with Garage Band in my bedroom. I can't believe Janet was only in her early 20s when this shit went down.
5. Fine Young Cannibals | She Drives Me Crazy
My Dad had this dubbed onto a cassette that I took on a family road trip to California when I was seven. It has the best gated snare drum sound ever. I guess the vocal hook is alright as well...
6. Tasseomancy | Healthy Hands
This is a brand new duo from Toronto fronted by twin sisters named Romy and Sari Lightman. Their music somehow manages to come across simple and minimal but also substantive and weighty all at the same time. I released this song as a 7" vinyl single on my own boutique label, Hype Lighter and they're currently working on a music video for it as well. Keep an eye out, will you?
7. Mark Ronson | Bang Bang Bang
I'm really into the idea of rapping over pop tracks lately and this one pretty much has it all. Not to mention the video is totally awesome. You can't go wrong with the Juno 60 synthesizer.
8. Black Box | Ride On Time
The vocal performance on this track is absolutely out of this world. The electric piano also captures that bright and punchy sound that was quintessential in the late 80s and early 90s. One of my friends has this on vinyl and I totally want to steal it from her.
9. Salt N Pepa | Let's Talk About Sex
I have the 12" single version of this song and I think it's awesome how forthright and honest the lyrical performance comes across. I think it was really brave of a female rap group to take on sex in such a conversational and matter-of-fact manner, especially almost 20 years ago!
10. David Bowie | Warzawa
I enjoy a good bath now and again and this song is always my go-to. I have a mini-record player that I bring into the bathroom and set up far enough away from the tub that I don't get electrocuted. If you think this sounds good normally, just try listening with your head submerged under warm water! Music like this feels so epically soothing that I bet it's as close as I'm ever going to get to returning to the womb.