2012 still feels very odd to write, but it’s already the time in the year to contemplate music and what I’ve liked. Kicking off this year (and I’ll even do the other two posts) are three ace mixes of 2012. Sit back and get comfy, if you listen to this lot you’ll lose three hours. NERD WARNING: I’ve linked all three of these as Mixcloud widgets, so if you’re blocking snazzy stuff click the title links to get the mixes.
I’ve loved Soundhog for years. One of the most notable members of the UK bootleg scene, if there was such a thing, his remixes and longer mixes were great (dig around his site if you’ve never heard of him). For this mix he was marking Delia Derbyshire’s 75th birthday. I’d been contemplating attempting a mix of radiophonic workshop material myself, but my half arsed efforts are nowhere near the majesty of his creation. Combining short pieces, interviews, her best known and most interesting works along with those of her collaborators this is more like a wonderful hour of audio celebrating her than just a humble mix. Anyone who claims to love old Dr Who even a little, or who likes any form of electronica should give this a listen.
“with my hardback book in hand, and my sandwiches of ham” is obviously the lyric that jumped out at me from Trevor Billmuss’ Sunday Afternoon In Belgrave Square. Radio Belbury is an excellent companion of the Ghost Box/Beard Stroking/Old sort of radiophionic/library music/fake nostalgia/real nostalgia of sorts that I’ve fallen into loving as a form of early middle age. Taking in artists such as Trever Billmuss and his forgotten 70s songs and then blending against modern works such as Benjamin Schoos as he nicks Latetia from Stereolab this was a mix I could pick and play on repeat forever. In truth though some of this was from getting so keen on the new Pye Corner Audio track in here which presaged his new LP Sleep Games. Even if you don’t buy into the whole Ghost Box label, I’d say Radio Belbury is always a decent hour of obscure and entertaining music.
SHOCK! as Alex likes some songs about beards. I’ve been listening to Project Moonbase for over a year now. Fronted by two nerds from Edinburgh who are almost certainly friends of friends of friends if not friends of friends, this is a show dedicated to music, nerdery and themes. With a decidedly retro outlook to the future they turn in this case to consider Movember and the musical celebration of hairy faces. As ever, they picked out a range of songs relevant in lyrics, name or outlook and in turn made a delightful hour of radio. Impressively they’ve now racked up 108 shows of similar quality (I mean this in a good way) and the whole archive is worth a listen, not least to hear more unnecessary news than you may ever need. To me this is everything Stuart Maconie’s Freak Zone should be but isn’t (i.e. highly listenable, random and welcome). I think my favourite thing is that they firmly embrace internet culture, so a song like Sophie Madeleine’s Beard Song a minor YouTube hit, just slips in nicely.
Anyway, that’s three mixes I’ve loved from folk I follow. Who am I missing?