Monday, December 31, 2012

Something Raw: Choice Cuts Volume 11

             

In no particular order, I've selected the favorite tracks from 2012's monthly playlists for our eleventh annual Choice Cuts end-of-year mix.



1. The Only Place--Best Coast

We kick off this year's playlist with a track that asks what Angelenos frequently say to out-of-towners. "Why would you live anywhere else?" demands Best Coast's Bethany Cosentino. The Los Angeles-based surf-pop band asks a good question. "We've got the ocean, got the babes. Got the sun, we've got the waves. This is the only place for me." Sold.



2. Explosions--Coco Morier

An explosion of groove at the start of Coco Morier's "Explosions" makes this track a keeper. It will get you dancing, guaranteed.



3. Beta Love--Ra Ra Riot

A late entry to this year's playlist, "Beta Love" is a bit bubblegum-y, but with a synth hook and falsetto chorus that's addictive. The kids love the robot references. Win-win.



4. That's Still Mama--Cody ChesnuTT

Forget Mr. T's "Treat Yo Mama Right." Cody Chesnutt has a new anthem for Mother's Day, a slick 1960s-style jam. Others have called him a "modern-day Curtis Mayfield," and that shines on this track. Above, an acoustic version of the song, performed at Seattle's KEXP. Listen to the regular version below.



More tomorrow!

5. Marathon Runner -- Yellow Ostrich

From New York's Yellow Ostrich comes a nice slightly mellow piece of indie rock. "Marathon Runner," a personal track from Yellow Ostrich's Alex Schaaf, is all about chasing something, even though you're not quite sure what it is.



6. Sweet Life -- Frank Ocean

It was Frank Ocean's breakthrough year, and I could have put one of several songs here. But perhaps I was brought in here by Ocean's description of the sweet life in L.A., and its references like "Ladera Heights -- the Black Beverly Hills."



7. Santa Fe -- Beirut

Technically from late 2011, this Beirut tune almost didn't make my best of 2012 list. But I didn't really start listening to this song until this year, and it's just too damn catchy not to include.



8. Here Again -- Quantic & Alice Russell

That groove! That voice! Those drums. That flute! Another near-perfect Latin soul groove from Quantic & Alice Russell with the Combo Bárbaro.



9. Your Drums, Your Love -- AlunaGeorge

Great video, great song. Triumphant chorus, coupled with that cool "Your drums" sample.



10. Anna Sun (Fool's Gold Remix) -- Walk The Moon

You've heard the original version on radio, but I prefer this brooding, melancholic version of Walk The Moon's "Anna Sun," as remixed by Fool's Gold.



11. Queen Of The City -- Joshua James

Don't let the creepy video distract you. A gem from Joshua James off his album "Willamette Mountain," this song ought to be better known.



12. Leave The Lights On (The Crystal Method Remix) -- Meiko

The Crystal Method turns Meiko's already urgent and anxious "Leave the Lights On" into an even more haunting groove.



13. Constant Conservations (St. Lucia Remix) -- Passion Pit

I liked the Passion Pit track "Take A Walk," but it's now being heard everywhere, and I can see where it might get old fast. This St. Lucia remix of "Constant Conversations" brings the tempo of the original down a bit, allowing for a more haunting, yet anthemic, quality.



14. Losing You -- Solange

Apologies, Beyonce, but Solange may be fast becoming my favorite Knowles sister. Watching her energetically perform in various South African street scenes makes for a fantastic video, and pairs nicely with the unexpected sounds of "Losing You."



15. High For This -- Ellie Goulding

I could have picked a number of Ellie Goulding tracks for my end-of-year collection, with "My Blood" a close second. But there's something about Goulding's cover of The Weeknd's "High For This" that convinced me to go this route.



16. Trip -- Vacationer

Vacationer had me the second "Trip" opens with that Martin Denny, "Exotica"-like riff. Quick, dark song that makes me want to, well, take a trip.



17. Born To -- Jesca Hoop

For once I agree with the comments on a YouTube video post. "Her voice is powerful and sensitive at the same time," one writes. Another: "I'd love to just spend one day with jesca hoop having a nice chat drinking a coffee." And another: "Can everybody else just stop making music? This is all I ever need."



18. Who Do You Like? -- Joywave

The "Live at the Strasenburgh Planetarium" version of Joywave's "Who Do You Like?" is a pretty faithful rendition of the recording. From their 2012 EP "Koda Vista," a nice slice of 80s-inspired pop. Criminal that this song isn't better known.



19. Neighborhood #1 (Tunnels) (Arcade Fire Cover) -- Meklit Hadero & Quinn DeVeaux

I could listen to Meklit and Quinn's quiet cover of Arcade Fire's "Neighborhood #1 (Tunnels)" over and over again. As a matter of fact, I do. And I never get tired of it.



20. Warrior -- Mark Foster + A-Trak + Kimbra

OK, so I wasn't about to put "Someone I Used To Know" on this end-of-year roundup -- I figure we've all heard that song enough for a lifetime. But here's nonetheless your dose of Kimbra, along with Foster the People's Mark Foster and DJ A-Trak. And OK, so this song comes out of Converse's "3 Artists, 1 Song" promotion -- but other than a few glimpses of Converse shoes in the video, it's not all intrusive. It's just a catchy jam. Don't overthink it!



21. Not Giving In -- Rudimental ft. John Newman & Alex Clare

Alex Clare dominated the charts this year with "Too Close" (thanks to that ubiquitous Microsoft commercial), yet his collaboration here with Rudimental and John Newman is much more powerful. Perhaps it's because of this video, a "Slumdog Millionaire"-like tale that's based on a true story about b-boy star "Mouse's" rags-to-riches experience and shot on location outside Manila. Read more about the video here.

2012 Mixes

December 2012

My Blood -- Ellie Goulding (3:56)
Roses -- Pacific Air (3:57)
The Seed -- K'naan (3:36)
Beta Love -- Ra Ra Riot (2:56)
Wildest Moments -- Jessie Ware (3:42)
When the City Lights Dim -- Cold Specks (3:20)
The House That Heaven Built -- Japandroids (4:51)
Feels Like We Only Go Backwards -- Tame Impala (3:13)
Stay Useless -- Cloud Nothings (2:45)
Five Seconds -- Twin Shadow (4:20)
Capricornia -- Allo, Darlin' (4:31)
I'll Be Alright -- Passion Pit (4:23)
Time To Run -- Lord Huron (5:24)
& It Was U -- How To Dress Well (3:06)
Danse Carribe -- Andrew Bird (5:19)
The Pit -- Silversun Pickups (4:41)
Grown Up -- Danny Brown (2:20)
Everything Is Embarrassing -- Sky Ferreira (4:11)

November 2012

Take A Walk -- Passion Pit (4:25)
The Only Place -- Best Coast (2:43)
Not Giving In -- Rudimental ft. John Newman & Alex Clare (4:44)
Mouthful of Diamonds -- Phantogram (4:13)
Whatever Comes Our Way -- The Deadly Syndrome (3:34)
Dark Parts -- Perfume Genius (3:09)
Holy Roller -- Thao & The Get Down Stay Down (2:36)
Lines -- Big Boi Ft A$AP Rocky & Phantogram (3:25)
When Can I See You Again? -- Owl City (3:37)
Runaways (Sound Remedy Remix) -- The Killers (3:56)
You Remind Me Of Home -- Ben Gibbard (2:14)
Help I'm Alive -- Metric (4:46)
Night Light (Wild Beast Remix) -- Jessie Ware (2:48)
Ballad of the Golden Hour -- Widowspeak (4:27)
Affection -- Crystal Castles (2:37)
Runnin' -- Sinkane (2:28)
Watching Over You -- Alunageorge (3:26)
The Baddest Man Alive -- The Black Keys & RZA (3:49)
No Strings (RAC Remix) -- Mayer Hawthorne (3:36)
Til I Met Thee -- Cody ChesnuTT (4:29)

October 2012 Part 2

Splitter -- Calexico (3:31)
Magpie -- Beth Orton (3:50)
When I'm With You -- Best Coast (2:58)
Live and Die -- The Avett Brothers (4:31)
The Bravest Man in the Universe -- Bobby Womack (3:53)
Labrador -- Aimee Mann (3:47)
Scattered Like Leaves -- Azure Ray (3:45)
Lost in the Light -- Bahamas (3:57)
Waimanu I Ka Lauoha -- Kuana Torres Kahele (4:39)
Tease Me -- Lianne La Havas (3:34)
True Thrush -- Dan Deacon (4:44)
How To Love -- School of Seven Bells (4:31)
The Measure -- Helio Sequence (3:20)
The Stranger -- Lord Huron (5:41)
Harps -- The Sea and Cake (4:07)
Love Is Luck -- The Walkmen (3:26)
Can't Relive The Party -- Toussaint Morrison (3:46)

October 2012 playlist
October 2012

Hands -- The Swellers (2:50)
Your Drums, Your Love -- AlunaGeorge (3:38)
Do It Anyway -- Ben Folds Five (3:55)
Hurricane -- MSMR (3:47)
Thief (Rubblebucket Remix feat. Kalmia) -- Chamberlin (3:53)
Quiver -- Jenna Andrews (3:07)
Patron Saint -- Regina Spektor (3:40)
Glass Mountain Trust (feat. D'Angelo) (B. Bravo & Teeko Re-Funk) -- B. Bravo & Teeko (4:48)
Yet Again -- Grizzly Bear (5:18)
Losing You -- Solange (4:22)
Ends of the Earth -- Lord Huron (4:45)
The Keepers -- Santigold (3:33)
Queen Of The City -- Joshua James (3:19)
How Do You Do? -- Hot Chip (4:45)
Robot -- Sick/Sea (3:56)
Naked -- Sera Cahoone (3:26)
Friends of Friends -- Hospitality (3:08)
Hunting Season -- The Epilogues (3:57)
Hold On When You Get Love And Let Go When You Give It -- Stars (4:38)
Can't Relive The Party -- Toussaint Morrison (3:46)


September 2012 playlist
September 2012

Unsurfed Waves -- Snowblink (3:38)
Stained Glass House -- Shy Hunters (3:41)
Heartbeat -- Kopecky Family Band (3:12)
Trust -- Generationals (3:45)
Angels -- The xx (2:52)
Slow Beginnings -- Alameda (3:33)
Purple -- California Wives (2:40)
Invincible (feat. RZA & Memoryhouse) -- Colin Munroe (4:37)
Cherokee -- Cat Power (4:46)
That's Still Mama -- Cody ChesnuTT (4:13)
October -- The Helio Sequence (4:38)
Too Young For Love -- Superhumanoids (3:50)
Unrehearsed -- Abandoned Pools (4:05)
Teardrop Windows -- Benjamin Gibbard (2:48)
No Church in the Wild (feat. Frank Ocean) -- Kanye West & Jay-Z (4:33)
Shiny Things -- Fanfarlo (4:33)
Tunnels (Arcade Fire Cover) -- Meklit Hadero & Quinn DeVeaux (4:32)
Come Home -- Chappo (3:28)
Fire -- The Submarines (4:24)
I'm Not Talking -- A.C. Newman (4:39)


August 2012 playlist
August 2012

Sleep Alone -- Two Door Cinema Club (3:42)
Comeback Kid -- Sleigh Bells (3:01)
High For This -- Ellie Goulding (4:20)
Lights Out -- Santigold (3:13)
Only The Brave -- The Last Royals (3:35)
Feel So Close (Radio Edit) -- Calvin Harris (3:28)
Movie Loves a Screen -- April Smith and the Great Picture Show (2:15)
Don't Deny Your Heart -- Hot Chip (4:32)
Constant Conservations (St. Lucia Remix) -- Passion Pit (3:59)
Cry for Judas -- The Mountain Goats (3:13)
Only In My Dreams -- Ariel Pink's Haunted Graffiti (3:12)
Thinkin Bout You -- Frank Ocean (3:21)
Will Do -- TV On The Radio (3:46)
Holocene -- KNESSET (5:37)
When The Movie's Over -- Twin Shadow (3:58)
Where Do You Belong? -- Digits (4:25)
Harps -- The Sea and Cake (4:08)
Lord Knows -- Dum Dum Girls (4:18)
Talk about Lonesome -- Beachwood Sparks (3:09)
I'm Jay's Girl -- Friends x Jay-Z (2:50)


July 2012 playlist
July 2012

I Was A Bomb -- Silent Rider (4:50)
Midnight City (M83 Cover) -- Saint Saviour (3:49)
Sod In The Seed -- WHY? (4:43)
Get Away With It -- Animal Kingdom (3:15)
Move In The Right Direction (CSS Remix) -- Gossip (4:02)
Lights -- Ellie Goulding (4:06)
In A Phantom Mood -- Shintaro Sakamoto (4:05)
I'll Wait -- Bebe Black (4:21)
Secret Lover (Party Supplies Remix) -- That Work (3:48)
Sweet Life -- Frank Ocean (4:23)
Coffee -- Misun (3:44)
Settle Down - Brenmar Remix - Master -- Kimbra (4:28)
Rocket Ship -- Dragonette (3:31)
Tuck the Darkness In -- Bowerbirds (4:50)
You as You Were -- Shearwater (3:43)
Murder in the City -- The Avett Brothers (3:12)
Know Me -- Frankie Rose (2:53)
Summer Skills (Bump in the Night Version) -- ARMS (4:36)
Live Your Life (DJ Ayres & Scott Melker Remix) -- Yuna (3:02)
White Coats -- Foxes (4:07)


May 2012 playlist
May 2012

Too Close -- Alex Clare (4:17)
I Belong In Your Arms -- Chairlift (3:27)
Call Me Maybe -- Carly Rae Jepsen (3:14)
All Day Today -- Hospitality (3:14)
Summerlong -- Xylos (3:51)
Marathon Runner -- Yellow Ostrich (3:56)
Titanium -- David Guetta feat. Sia (4:01)
I Wait For You -- Future Of What (2:18)
Doom -- New Beard (3:37)
Tongue Tied (Gigamesh Remix) -- Grouplove (4:28)
Gangsta -- Tune-Yards (4:01)
Us & Ourselves -- Morning Parade (3:43)
Bloody Mary -- Silversun Pickups (3:50)
Some Nights -- PK (3:22)
Treehouse -- Gold Fields (3:18)
It All Feels the Same -- Tennis (3:23)
life = trap -- K.Flay (3:12)
Jag Kommer -- Veronica Maggio (3:27)
End Of The Line -- Sleigh Bells (3:38)


April 2012

Spotify April 2012

Crystals -- Fixers (3:52)
Explosion -- Coco Morier (3:50)
Never Stop -- The Toxic Avenger (4:27)
Lost Somewhere -- Tanlines (3:30)
Take Care (feat. Rihanna) -- Drake (4:37)
Keep It Low -- The Hundred In The Hands (4:23)
Paper Butterfly -- Shana Halligan (2:35)
Anna Sun (Fool's Gold Remix) -- Walk The Moon (2:59)
Born To -- Jesca Hoop (3:44)
Milwaukee Protocol -- Bright Moments (3:46)
Wild -- Royal Teeth (4:35)
Every Night I Say A Prayer -- Little Boots (3:39)
Warrior -- Mark Foster + A-Trak + Kimbra (4:14)
Velvet Elvis -- Alex Winston (3:20)
Leave The Lights On (The Crystal Method Remix) -- Meiko (4:23)
God Knows Why -- Nneka featuring Black Thought (4:02)
Do You Remember -- Ane Brun (3:12)
No Diggity -- Chet Faker (3:43)
Here Again -- Quantic & Alice Russell (4:07)
Big Mouth -- Santigold (3:11)
My Night With The Prostitute From Marseille -- Beirut (3:09)


March 2012
Primitive Girl -- M. Ward (3:10)
Who Do You Like? -- Joywave (3:36)
Someone Like You (Clark Kent Remix) -- Adele (5:53)
Guide Me (Gigamesh Remix) -- James Curd (5:12)
Age of Consent -- The Last Names (3:44)
Cyan -- Kindness (4:28)
Another Life -- NO (4:05)
Somebody That I Used To Know (Myndset Remix) -- Gotye ft. Kimbra (4:35)
Trip -- Vacationer (2:54)
Wood And Plastic -- Breton (2:40)
Slow Down (DWNTWN Remix) -- BeatauCue (3:42)
Give It Away -- Andrew Bird (4:31)
Natural Disaster -- Dante Vs Zombies (3:26)
We Were Owls -- Lovedrug (3:57)
Shake Hands -- Birthmark (2:54)
Groove Me feat. Theophilus London (Alex Metric Remix) -- Maximum Balloon (5:11)
Beautiful Life -- jj (3:20)
Video Games (Grandtheft Remix) -- Lana Del Rey (5:22)
All Of Me -- Tanlines (3:51)
Flutes -- Hot Chip (7:05)


February 2012
Punching In A Dream -- The Naked & Famous (3:58)
Put It On The Line -- Soft Swells (3:46)
We Are Young (Feat. Janelle Monae) -- Fun. (4:10)
Break My Heart -- La Sera (2:09)
The Look -- Metronomy (4:38)
Turn Me On (feat. Nicki Minaj) -- David Guetta & Nicki Minaj (3:20)
Lay Your Cards Out (feat. Mike Noyce of Bon Iver) -- POLIÇA (4:04)
Tongue Tied -- Grouplove (3:38)
Santa Fe -- Beirut (4:15)
Don't Stop (St. Lucia Remix) -- Foster The People (4:14)
Crystal Film (Close Remix) -- Little Dragon (4:00)
We Found Love (feat. Calvin Harris) -- Rihanna (3:36)
June Hymn -- The Decemberists (3:58)
Charles Bradley (Les Professionnels Edit) -- Young Gliss (3:26)
Oceans (White Sea Remix) -- Serenades (4:24)
Bad Feeling -- Veronica Falls (3:10)
Love Love Love -- Avalanche City (3:13)
Two Against One (Feat. Jack White) -- Danger Mouse & Daniele Luppi (2:21)
In The Middle (I Met You There) (feat. Jonny Pierce) -- Matthew Dear (3:50)
Sweet Sour -- Band Of Skulls (3:26)
Lotus Flower -- Radiohead (5:00)


January 2012
My Home -- Nneka (4:08)
Cocaine (Little Dragon Remix) -- The Internet (3:29)
Devil's Work -- Miike Snow (3:56)
You're The Kind Of Girl -- Lee Fields (4:01)
This Is Not A Song -- Islands (3:56)
Fauxhemia -- Dead Milkmen (2:41)
Heartaches & Pain -- Charles Bradley (2:56)
Beggar In the Morning -- The Barr Brothers (5:55)
The Night -- School of Seven Bells (3:49)
High Hawk Season -- The Mountain Goats (2:56)
Palomino -- Mates of State (4:55)
Steven McQueen -- M83 (3:49)
Holocene -- Bon Iver (5:37)
Little Talks -- Of Monsters And Men (4:27)
East Harlem -- Beirut (3:59)
Calamity Song -- The Decemberists (3:50)
Cruel -- St. Vincent (3:35)
Downtown -- Destroyer (3:52)
Lover To Lover -- Florence + the Machine (4:03)
Rylan -- The National (4:15)

For all of my mixes going back to 2001, check out our companion Choice Cuts blog!