1. Vanilla | Beyond
This song came to mind almost immediately when putting together this Imaginary Mixtape. There's just something about it, the Light Vinyl Air running through the track, that slight Swing on the Drums, the Simplicity of the Melody. I listen to this once a day easy. It was one of the first, for lack fo a better term, Chill Hop songs I had ever heard, and it just opened my eyes to such a relaxing idea. It is the best way to start your day sonically, hands down.
2. One Sixth Of Tommy | It's alright (Cillo Remix)
I realized when putting this together the addiction I have to Simple Music. I think it's true that to achieve such Beauty and Power using the least amount of Instrumentation and Melody possible is the Key to Making Good Music. And this Remix stands out as a shining beacon of this. It's just so inspiring and relaxing. I met Cillo once or twice actually through a mutual friend, he's Irish and I was in a club with him, he sent me home with the link to his Soundcloud and I was shocked when I realised I already had this song downloaded months ago and it was his. Sadly, I never seen him after that, so, Cillian, if you're reading this, congratulations on all your success so far!
3. Baths | Iniuria Palace (Palatial Disappointment)
Baths. Where do I start with Baths? Do you listen to Baths? LISTEN TO BATHS. That's generally how I broach the subject in conversation. He truly understands Music, he doesn't treat it as Sound, he treats it all as Emotion, every Note, every Noise triggers an Emotional Reaction in the Brain and I became hooked immediately upon hearing one of his songs. This one always stands out in my head though. Straight off the bat those desolate clicks on his mouse are Soul Wrenching. You can picture him immediately forlorn over some girls Facebook page, the Modern Tragedy. If he can make you see a picture as clear as day like that in your head just from hearing those Abstract Seeming Sounds then you know he has truly mastered Sound. I don't think Baths will ever stop amazing me, his Structure and ideas just stick with me day in and day out. If you do one thing with your day let it be downloading his Discography and re-evaluating everything you ever learned about Music.
4. Boyz II Men | Can You Stand The Rain (Burn Water Heavy A Capella Rework)
This song amazed me on two levels, first I heard it and it blew me away. It's so deep and enveloping, you can get lost in it. Then I listened to the Original which I had never heard (it's an A Capella) and I realised how much work he had put in. He literally shaped the entire song around these empty Vocals, I can never unhear it, it's Perfect. Boyz II Men would have been lucky to have Burn Water back in their hay day. Maybe they would have survived as Chart Toppers. He has this sublime way of melding Natural Instrumentation and Electronic Sounds that's just breath taking.
5. KOAN Sound x Gemini x Culprate x Asa | Beyond The Shadows
Every year Inspected pile the best of their Artists into Red Bull Studios and have them collaborate on a release for Charity in November. What I would give to be in that Studio for a day, all the Artists are incredible in their own right, but put them together and they create Worlds. Whole Worlds of Emotion that change and grow around you. It's just powerful and you never know where it's going to go. Every November release by them has been spectacular. I met KOAN once for approximately 3 seconds. It was all I could do to stop my jaw from hitting the floor. In retrospect I would have Loved to say something to them about how huge a fan I was or how incredibly touching their Music was. But I think they got my point.
6. Nitin Sawhney | The Devil And Midnight (Engine-EarZ Experiment Remix)
I remember first hearing this at an ungodly hour while trying to finish a track and it re-energized me almost immediately. The blend of Darkness and that Soulful Verse is just so haunting, but with the right amount of Electronic touch. It's a perfect Remix in my mind, as incredible as it is Simple and as Powerful Emotionally as it is Catchy.
7. James Blake | I Never Learnt To Share
I don't think I could ever really do this song justice with an explanation. It's just so, Everything. It's haunting, it's beautiful, it's catchy, it's sad, its cheesy. It's everything you could ever want in a song. And the Instrumentation is just Bizarre. The Distorted Guitars against that cheesy warm Synth. He blends it together so incredibly. And the Layering on his Vocals are sublime. A friend and I spent months walking around and breaking out into this randomly. I recommend checking out the Live Version, it has even more raw power to it. If I ever meet James Blake I may just have to bow.
8. Burial | Archangel
Cheesy, I know, and the Most Stereotypical Choice from an incredible catalogue. But the point has to be made that this could possibly be the Best Song of All Time, and that is why it's in here. I was entranced the first time I heard this, it sunk into me, I could feel it in my skin. And that was before I had even heard it under the influence of drugs. The Drums are so Warm and Unnatural yet they feel Organic. The Vocals are just beautiful and it's some of the best Vocal Chopping I have ever heard. You hear even 3 seconds of this song and it will be in your head for weeks. I heard he does all his Chopping and Sampling in Sound Forge which is just incredible if true, such a simple program and he manages to Produce such Vibrant and Original Tones. He really is a True Master of Sonic Capabilities.
9. Feed Me | Grand Theft Ecstasy
On a less depressing note Musically there's this song. My God, I can't even begin to explain the hours and hours I've lost to this song, sometimes it comes on my iPod and I listen to it 5 times in a row. Every second of this song is meticulously crafted and it has one of the best Mixdowns I have ever heard. Not to mention it features one of my Favorite Samples Ever right before the Drop, the song just has so much in it, I've poured over it analyzing every last inch, if I was ever to Create something as Intricate and Incredibly Catchy as this I could die a happy man. I would list every single Feed Me song on this list if it didn't seem unfair, but the man is a Genius. I am still finding things in this song I haven't noticed before and I think that secured its Staying Power on my iPod Forever.
10. Rustie | Inside Pikachu's Cunt
While I'm on a lighter note... There is this song which I will leave as my last choice. It may seem Odd in comparison to the rest, but I couldn't possibly leave it out. Plus I never miss the opportunity to slip the word Cunt in anywhere. My girlfriend first showed me this song, and I hated it. But I put it on my iPod nonetheless and then I realised I was never skipping it when it came on. And that's the true test of a song's worth. There's something about it, the cheeky Lazers, the Bubble Sounds, the Odd Rhythm. It's all just so Interesting. It sounded to me almost like something I would have started making and then gave up because I realised noone would ever listen to it. It opened my eyes and reminded me that you should always make what you want to hear, fuck everyone else, make Music for You and noone else.