I’ve decided to put up all of my unreleased work from the last few years as a free download. Of course there are still hundreds of half-started ideas, and some tracks that were finished, but really just not good at all, so it’s been edited a bit. Regardless, here’s 30 songs (organized into three discs) that have been taking space on my hard drive. Enjoy!
Whoa, so here’s your summer soundtrack/mixtape raw material. Ranging from sparkling electro to pitched-up shuffle to glowing etherium, not all of these 30 tracks are hits, but most are quite a bit better than misses. While there are some sketches and some songs that don’t quite work, there is a high quotient of gems in these three “lost songs” collections. Some highlights: leadoff electro-disco number Two, sparkling rave Hung Up (both from LS1), twinkling shuffle Memory and synth jam Creek Beat from LS2, and wonderfully dreamy pop song The Endless Summer and heavenly noise/drone slab of Mute from LS3. All in all, Lost Songs 3 is the most steady, leaning more towards the chill side of things, but the whole collection is really the perfect background sounds for anything this summer can throw at you.
My pal has put together a spectacular background mix for this summer. Perfect for Arnold Palmers or cold ones with the pals while there are kebabs on the grill, it’s a bit more than an hour of exotica put together while he sat on a beach in America’s island paradise. Prepare yourself for a craving for the Dole Pineapple Whip and a desire to wear a Hawaiian shirt.
It should be no surprise that we here at Melodic Expectation are fans of chiptune boyband Anamanaguchi. They inject 8-bit rainbows into kick-ass instrumental pop punk infused with the essence of the Internet. This new track (and accompanying video) tease their new album with the barely controlled Famicom chaos for which they are well known.
Wayfarer - The Holly & The Ivy - A couple of excellent blown-up folk tunes, one a reinterpretation of the classic titular hymn, one a pitch-perfect Beach Boys cover.
Damien Jurado and Kyle Zantos - Kalla Hus - Indie singer-songwriting legend Damien Jurado has recorded his first original Christmas tune with Seattle musician Kyle Zantos. Jurado, who recently became a father again, has melded glimmers of holiday hope and lush piano-and-strings production with as downcast a chorus as I’ve heard from him.
Los Campesinos - A Doe To A Deer - Crazy twee/punk collective Los Campesinos have lent their bombast and confessionalism some tubular bells and some serious holiday wistfulness in their free Christmas single.
The Rosebuds - Christmas Tree Island - Like Sufjan, Xmas Movie Soundtrack and the afore-mentioned Parenthetical Girls, The Rosebuds are students of the music of the holidays. They’ve discovered the perfect formula of jingle bells, saxophone solos and cheery but earnest singing to create the perfect Christmas music. And instead of recycling the same old tired covers, they’ve written an entire album of insta-classics. If you call yourself a fan of Christmas music, the album is worth all three dollars and ninety-nine pennies.
Lastly, have you seen this? It’s perfect in every way.
The Holidays Don’t Have to Be So Rotten Vol. 3 - From Flannelgraph Records comes their third annual original instrumental Christmas compilation. It’s not pay what you want like previous years, but the money goes for a good cause—to pay for gifts for kids in a shelter in Indiana. Features the same Candy Claws song as the above compilation (seriously, guys, really?), Advance Base (fka Casiotone for the Painfully Alone) and a bunch of hidden winter gems.
A Familyre Christmas Vol. 5- Sounds Familyre, boutique label of Daniel Smith of the Danielson Family, and home to a diverse group of troubadours including the likes of David Eugene Edwards (16 Horsepower/Woven Hand) and Sufjan Stevens, is currently posting their Christmas compilation at the rate of two songs a day. The entire thing will be posted and available for purchase/download on December 23. There’s good stuff already, including the annual Half-Handed Cloud Christmas song, but don’t forget to check the other four compilations for all kinds of fun, off-kilter goodness.
Schlarb Family Plays Fleetwood Mac - Ambient/noise/jazz maestro Chris Schlarb and his family record a small album as a Christmas project and present to the world each year. This year they decided to tackle four songs from the legendary Fleetwood Mac. The songs are fun and totally sing-along-able if not the most technically proficient.