TheLetterElectronic Music Guide

Shy Talk
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Compilations are brilliant.

For years I used to record the John Peel radio show and then listen through the tapes over the following days, editing what I liked into what I referred to as my "Peel Tapes". I must have over seventy 90-minute taped compilations going back more than fifteen years. Listening back to these taped compilations, as they reflected Peel's diverse tastes I realised I didn't have the luxury to plan them out; one song followed another according to what Peel played. This highlighted the complexity involved when making a decent compilation.

Over the years I've made lots of tapes and CD's of my favourite music. I worked out that a good compilation has to consider factors like sequencing, tempo, volume and music-type. So, it's with great pleasure I now present to you the first of some of my more successful compilations.

This first one is titled Shy Talk: a reference to track 5, "Shithawke" by Riton. It also features some of the best German electronic musicians making music at the moment; artists like Ellen Allien and Michael Mayer. Here's a brief run through of the playlist.

  1. Bloc Party - Banquet (Phones disco edit)
    This is a remix from new kids on the UK bloc. Very catchy pop music and sounds like The Cure. Ones to watch for 2005
  2. Alter Ego - Rocker
    A big underground hit in the summer of 2004, "Rocker", featuring a lovely phat base and slightly off-kilter first couple of minutes, balances the melodious and unlistenable perfectly
  3. The Knife - Pass This On
    Amazing video, check it out on The Knife website. Electronic steel drums give it a delicious eighties feel. I reviewed it already
  4. Paul Kalkbrenner - Der Berserker
    Melodious, motorised beat from German electronic music maestro
  5. Riton - Shitehawke
    Lifted off the second album "Homies and Homos" by gay icon, model and mild mannered electronic music creative genius Henry Smithson. The whole album reminds me a little of Julian Cope. Catchy tune... you'll be singing along before you know it
  6. Vector Lovers - Electrosuite
    Delicious electronic riff and vocodered vocals from Martin Wheeler, reminiscent of Daft Punk
  7. Swayzak - Then There's Her
    With a vocal contribution from Clair Dietrich, this cool, dubby, anecdotal number is taken from Swayzak's fourth album "Loops From The Bergerie"
  8. Gold Chains and Sue Cie - Crowd Control
    A recent signing to kitty yo, the album combines house, garage, punk and techno resulting in a unique pop sound. "Crowd Control" begins with a lovely farty beat before the double-tracked vocals of Topher sets the anthemic scene
  9. The Youngsters - Slow
    A hard-edged, techno-tinged and slightly hypnotic number from French duo Gil le Gamin and Olivier M
  10. Ellen Allien - Send
    Ellen Fraatz (aka Allien) is a brilliant DJ, brilliant songwriter and runs the brilliant, German, electro/techno label Bpitch Control. This belter of a track is taken from her first album Stadtkind and rolls along with understated power; a grower
  11. Michael Mayer - Amabile
    Another German DJ and producer. This track is taken from his debut album "Touch". Hypnotic
  12. Anthony Rother - Night of the Gods
    Another brilliant German artist, this time less hypnotic and more atmospheric; almost orchestral. Epic track
  13. Junior Boys - Teach Me How to Fight
    Best track from their debut album "Last Exit". A claim to be influenced by the track "Bamboo Houses" by Ryuichi Sakamoto and David Sylvian is understandable. A gentle, eighties-sounding song
  14. Boom Bip - Closed Shoulders (cLOUDEAD Remix)
    A mellow, melancholic and strangely blissful number with dark undercurrents
Shy Talk

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