WARMER MIXTAPES #1016 | by Adam Theron-Lee Rensch [Slow No Wake]
1. Built To Spill | Velvet Waltz
Arguably my Favorite Song of All Time. In College, I used to turn off all the lights and lay on the floor and listen to this song for hours. It seemed to envelop me, somehow, its swirling Melodies and shimmering Guitars like something Real in the World. I’ve also met Doug Martsch on more than one occasion, and he’s one of the nicest, most Sincere people around.
2. Spiritualized | Shine A Light
My Other Favorite Song of All Time (I have many, in fact). Jason Pierce is, without a doubt, my Musical Hero. In many ways, my entire Sound has been modeled after this song: the Minimalism, they Layers, the slow build that ends in an explosion of Sound. I discovered Spiritualized at an unhappy time in my early twenties, and have carried it with me ever since. It’s one of the few things that simply never gets old.
3. Julianna Barwick | White Flag
I absolutely Love Choral Music from the 16th Century, and she’s somehow managed to capture that in a way that, despite its Modern Elements, retains the kind of Awe and Reverence indicative of the Catholic Tradition. I learned How to Play Music on Loop Station as a kid, so to see someone making stuff this eloquent with the same machine is nice. Barwick, of course, does what I only dreamt of doing. I envy her Vocal abilities.
4. The Pretty Things | The Good Mr. Square/She Was Tall, She Was High
I’m a sucker for Sixties Pop, particularly the stuff that, for whatever reason, no one got a chance to hear. Pretty Things have become somewhat known in recent years, but at the time they were poised to be the next big thing. Unfortunately, they were overshadowed by Pink Floyd and the Beatles. These two tracks, which flow together as one, are just as good—if not better—than anything off Abbey Road. The transition from The Good Mr. Square into She Was Tall, She Was High gets me every time.
5. We All Together | Children
Another band from the same era that I would imagine even fewer have heard. They’re from Peru, and made two amazing albums in the early Seventies that Sound identical to The Beatles. They do some great Covers, but this track, from their first Self-Titled album, is an Original. The Harmonies are gorgeous.
6. Harry Nilsson | Living Without You (Randy Newman Cover)
Harry Nilsson was a Genius, and so was Randy Newman. Put them together and you’ve got a perfect record, Nilsson Sings Newman. This song is all about Loss, and Nilsson’s Voice is perfectly suited for that. It’ll make you cry, if you’re in right mood. It’ll probably make you cry even if you’re not.
7. Daniel Johnston | Held The Hand
I’ve always admired Artists Who Do the Most Within their Limitations, like David Byrne and Leonard Cohen. Daniel Johnston is similar, in the sense that he doesn’t have a good Voice and many of his recordings are flawed. But his Creativity, his Inspiration—it’s Unparalleled. This song is especially remarkable, because the recording itself was wrought with his own Inner Demons, and the final product is Haunting.
8. Can | Vitamin C
For a time in my early twenties, I played in a Psychedelic Prog-Rock Trio heavily inspired by bands like Can, Faust, and Neu!. Can has always been my favorite of the bunch, and I probably could have picked any of their songs. I chose this because of the Drumming, which like in many of their songs is Machine-like and Driving. I also Love the Strange Vocals, and the way the song gets inside of you somehow. It’s an uneasy feeling, but Good Music should make you feel that way sometimes.
9. Richard Wagner | Das Rheingold: Vorspiel (Performed by Vienna Philharmonic Orchestra, Conductor: Georg Solti)
I listen to a lot of Classical Music, probably more than any other Genre. I especially like 19th Century stuff—Brahms, Dvořák, Schubert, Strauss, etc. This Opening Section of Wagner’s Tristan Und Isolde is really Untouchable, however. Even Nietzsche, who wound up hating Wagner, could not deny its Brilliance. The Tonality throughout, with its nuanced Dissonance and sweeping Melodies, is basically a study in How To Elicit Emotion from a Listener. No one does it better than Wagner.
10. The Supremes | Where Did Our Love Go
Again, I could have picked any song. I will listen to any and all Diana Ross. She’s great with The Supremes, and she’s great Solo. I guess I always go for this track because I like Handclaps—like, I really like Handclaps. Don’t ask me why, I just do. Also, can anyone do the Sadness and Joy of Love like Diana Ross? Probably not.