WARMER MIXTAPES #226 | by Alex Schaaf [Yellow Ostrich]

1. Jon Brion | Row
A one minute song, with nothing but piano. Absolutely gorgeous, I can't listen to this without feeling completely at ease. I just put headphones on and crank this song up so that its just (gently) pounding into my ears, and it's perfect. From the Eternal Sunshine soundtrack.

2. Neil Young | After The Gold Rush
My favorite Neil song, this one really shows off his voice and his ability to create timeless melodies. For such a classic or famous song to be recorded with only piano and voice is pretty impressive. He doesn't need any sort of studio tricks or impressive production, he just sits down and records, and that is the end product. Which is pretty amazing.

3. David Bowie | Sound And Vision
Not feeling pressured to fill every minute of every song with vocals and clever lyrics, this song is largely instrumental, but when the vocals do come in they are catchy as hell.

4. Dirty Projectors and Björk | On And Ever Onward
This is off of that EP that they just released a couple of months ago or something. I really like the EP because it showcases the quieter, textural side of the DPs, especially emphasizing the vocal interplay between all of the singers which is what I really love about the DPs. And Björk is great, especially when put in contrast to the DPs singers. This track just really puts me at ease, and the sound of it is just so soft and creamy, it's great headphone music.

5. Weezer | Getchoo
I've just gotten into Weezer relatively recently, I've been listening a lot to Pinkerton and The Blue Album. I was always kind of turned off by Weezer because I really only ever saw modern Weezer which is full of mustaches, pork, and The Greatest Man Who Ever Lived (which is actually an incredible track, in that it is almost impossibly ridiculous). But going back to the older stuff, I've really been digging it, this track is just full of so much raw energy and bare emotion, it's the result of not holding back one bit. Which I like.

6. of Montreal | Casualty Of You
This is easily the newest track, in that the album hasn't even come out yet. Hopefully I don't get in trouble for already having heard this (a friend downloaded it and forced me to listen!). Overall the album is very solid, the songwriting isn't as captivating as on Hissing Fauna, my favorite of Montreal album, but the production (with Jon Brion) is incredible. This is one of my favorite tracks on the new album, I tend to like when Kevin slows things down and dials down the psychedelic guitars and crazy drums every now and then.

7. XTC | Dear God
Another band that I've just gotten into recently. I'm not sure I knew XTC existed a couple weeks ago, which is pretty sad now that I've heard their stuff. I only have one album, Skylarking, and this is my favorite song off of that. The production is really great overall, and the lyrics of this one are pretty enjoyable. The lead vocals kind of remind me of Joe Jackson, but with bigger beats and more rock guitars.

8. A Tribe Called Quest | Bonita Applebum
I really love the beats of ATCQ, the whole vibe is so confident and slick. This song is one of my favorites recently, I'm trying to figure out a way to cover it; I've got a cool way to do the chorus but i haven't figured out how to do the verses without sounding ridiculous. Some day.

9. Talking Heads | Psycho Killer
My favorite version of this song is probably the one from Stop Making Sense, their concert video. The showmanship of Byrne during that opening song is just incredible. A great song that's built around a simple but effective bass line.

10. Sufjan Stevens | Djohariah
In a way, the complete opposite of the first song on this list, as this one is 17 minutes long and features choirs, horns, drums, guitars, and everything in between. This is brand new as he just released it a couple days ago. While this is a 17 minute long song, but it does not feel like one, which is an impressive accomplishment. I've listened to this about 8 times in the last two days, a high play count for such a long song.