Month: September 2012

Episode 48 – Beckon

Episode 48 - Beckon (Artwork - T. Made)

Episode 48 – Beckon (Artwork – Daniel Morgenstern)

*I had the fortune of having my good friend Tyler Made contribute a mix for Episode 48. Read below for his thoughts on the Episode, and you can find more of Tyler’s great work here. I love this retrospective take on Beck’s career, as not only are these Tyler’s favorite Beck songs, but it’s one from each individual album.

As the many who listen to Visions of the Unexcused, Derek Hixon has inspired and influenced my music and what I’ve come to listen to and enjoy. His taste is unparalleled, and only matched by his hunger to hear more. Never jaded, fake or arrogant, he listens for love and shares that passion with anyone who lends an open ear – and it’s infectious. Those who don’t know him might be cynical of this description, but those who do are nodding their heads. This mix, or edited playlist for lack of a better description, is for Derek and because of Derek. For without him, I would have never paid any attention to Beck past what I heard on the radio, and I would have never known the depths and transformations he’s made as an artist. Truly amazing. So this one goes out to Derek and Beck. Thank you thank you thank you.

1. Where it’s At Intro [Odelay – 1996]
2. Wish Coin (Diplo Remix) [Guerolito – 2005]
3. Earthquake Weather [Guero – 2005]
4. Walls [Modern Guilt – 2008]
5. Lost Cause [Sea Change – 2002]
6. Fuckin’ With My Head [Mellow Gold – 1994]
7. He’s a Mighty Good Leader [One Foot In The Grave – 1994]
8. Crystal Clear (Beer) [Stereopathetic Soul Manure – 1994]
9. Totally Confused [Golden Feelings – 1993]
10. Feather in Your Cap [Jack-Ass – 1997]
11. Cripple Creek [Skip Pence Record Club – 2010]
12. Jack-Ass [Odelay – 1997]
13. No Complaints [The Information – 2006]
14. Think I’m in Love [The Information – 2006]
15. Tropicalia [Mutations – 1998]
16. Debra [Midnight Vultures – 1999]

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ISAM Live 2.0: Review of Amon Tobin & Holy Other at House of Blues Boston

Amon Tobin manning the machine, I presume. (Photo - D. Hixon)

Amon Tobin manning the machine, I presume. (Photo – D. Hixon)

Amon Tobin and Holy Other
House of Blues Boston, Kenmore Square, 09/12/12

I was belly up at the Foundation Room Bar because Holy Other was playing within the hour. Everyone else in the venue was there for the headliner, Amon Tobin. I first discovered Amon Tobin in 2007 after being introduced to his masterpiece, “Foley Room”. I was enthralled with the exploration & adventure that lay within the work. None of his music came close to brushing against what could be called Pop, which excited me. What Tobin created resembled the sonic landscape of a distant dream, and I was encapsulated by its beauty and intrigue. Admittedly, my attention to his work fell by the wayside while my ever shifting focus drifted towards other bands, producers, and makers of noise.
Holy Other (Illustration - D. Hixon)

Holy Other (Photo – D. Hixon)

 Enter Holy Other. Since 2010 I’ve been obsessed with his work, and led off my last podcast with one of his tracks. He consistently lays a haunting soundtrack that reeks of the modern world and forgotten nostalgia. Holy Other is what James Blake would sound like if he wasn’t co-opted by the Pitchfork Illuminati. His set reflected his music, it was sparse, with just right space and separation. On stage it was just him, alone in black with a fold-up table and a few assorted instruments, with his creativity in full view. There was no light show. There were no shiny objects to distract. There was just the music, and the man literally standing behind it.


Amon Tobin's set was as impressive as it gets. (Photo - D. HIxon)

Amon Tobin’s impressive stage. (Photo – D. HIxon)

Enter Amon Tobin, version 2.0. His set was as opposite as you could draw up, and likely by design. The coordination between the elaborate pixel stage design, music, and projections were close to immaculate. I was blown away by the perfection of the coordinated dance between the visual and auditory, so much so, that I grew suspect to its authenticity. Tobin’s music seemed to have been compromised since 2007, and certainly no longer brushed against Pop, but was lathered with it in obscene helpings. He didn’t appear to be a fearless artist, but more a pandering professional, playing dub-step like drops for a crowd of teenage persuasion.


I still respect Amon a ton, and the show was extremely entertaining, it just didn’t seem like I was in a club watching a musician perform. It was more like I was just off the Vegas strip watching a coordinated show go through its motions, leaving much desired as far as actual performance, but maybe that’s the point I missed. Or maybe the future of EDM, especially by large acts in big venues, is more about the entertainment value, and less about the music.

(Video – K. Chandler)

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New Music: Earthquake Party “Little Pet/Hello Weirdo/One More Night Could Ruin Us”

Earthquake Party

Earthquake Party

In August of 2011 I discovered Earthquake Party while digging online and my infatuation was instant. I fell for their DIY garage aesthetic and girl/boy song volley. I was especially prideful that they were just across the river in my old stomping ground of Allston, MA.

Tonight they play another Ghost Town of mine in Rochester, NY at The Bug Jar. In conjunction with tonights show they’ve released the above three song split which is candy to the ears. If you happen to be in Upstate NY I highly suggest the show, for not only will you see Earthquake Party, but also another favorite of mine, Pink Elephant – which so happens to have one of my favorite people in the World as a guitarist. (Buy Nick drinks, please.)

Earthquake Party will be back in Boston on 09/25 at Great Scott, and in the meantime, you can read a great interview with them over in the Village Voice.

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Lets Be Friends: Review of Edan the DJ at Lilypad

Edan in his element. (Photo - D. Hixon)

Edan in his element. (Photo – D. Hixon)

Edan the DJ
Lilypad, Union Square, 09/08/12

Edan is one of my favorite MC’s. Edan is one of my favorite Producers. Edan is one of my favorite DJ’s. Edan…well, he’s a favorite, and is someone who’ll forever roam in the fictional halls of my Honor Roll High School. When I caught wind he’d be DJ’ing down the street at Lilypad, I circled the date with a red felt tip pen, for if a favorite’s in town, attendance is mandatory.

Edan in the mix. (Photo - D.Hixon)

Edan in the mix. (Photo – D.Hixon)

What makes Edan standout is his unconditional love and respect for music. His taste is impeccable, and his skills as a true and traditional DJ make me want to forever hang my headphones. Edan can juggle an obscure psychedelia B-Side between tables with the precision of a master chef, and once you’re entranced with the smell, he’ll drop a perfectly matched Soul track that takes you further down the rabbit hole, leaving you salivating for more.

Lilypad was at capacity and youthful, and from the moment Edan dropped the needle the dancing was incessant. I drunkenly walked up to Edan halfway through his set, mumbled some type of appreciation, bowed like an obedient Monk, and swiftly creeped away. It’s never a good idea to be too close to a hero, especially when they’re a favorite.

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New Music: Teen Daze “New Life”

I’ve been digging on Vancouver’s Teen Daze for a bit now (See: Episode 47, Episode 34), and his latest single, “New Life”, has the same chill wavey lo-fi atmosphere I’ve grown to love. “New Life” is the first released track off his upcoming LP, “The Inner Mansions”, due out in November.

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Flying Lotus – Until The Quiet Comes – short film by Kahlil Joseph

Flying Lotus’ “Until The Quiet Comes” drops in early October, and this short film confirmed my excitement for its release. Steven Ellison (aka Flying Lotus) has been on the edge of progressive for years, and it looks like his art is ascending to the next level, making his Coltrane lineage even more linear. You can pre-order “Until The Quiet Comes” below.

iTunes –, Amazon –, Bleep –

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