1. Dntel | Bright Night
This song always makes me feel awe struck. Like I'm meeting an extraterrestrial. During those times when Music doesn't sound good for whatever reason, this song always brings me back. I once heard Jimmy say he doesn't like studios because he will tweak a kick for 2 hours sometimes. The way all the pieces of this song fit together shows his dedication and commitment. It's an unbelievable symphony that never fails to inspire me.
2. The Knife | Na Na Na
The loop that plays throughout is magical. It's the inspiration for a few song I've been writing. The vocal processing and how close the strings frequency is to the vocal frequency is amazing. The feminist lyrics are very appropriate for the time we're in as well.
3. Darkstar | Aidy's Girl Is A Computer
Again the vocal processing is amazing. I use the phone effect on an OP-1 to get a similar effect on stuff I sample from NPR. When they break down the dry digital sound and then drop the warm analog pad, I get chills.
4. Clams Casino | Drowning
Clams Casino puts Emotion in Hip Hop. I Love full songs that use drums that are classically considered Hip Hop. Most of my drums are inspired by Hip Hop. This song is best in the middle of a Minnesota winter.
5. Yung Lean | Kyoto
I like to think Lean, Gun, and Sherman changed Hip-Hop. I think they opened the door for now popular artists like Lil’ Yachty. Their songs are emotional as fuck, hence SADBOYS. Kyoto is a masterpiece. If I had the vinyl I’d have turned it white years ago.
6. Groundislava | Suicide Mission (feat. Baths)
Groundislava is probably my biggest inspiration. I’ve probably borrowed more of his style than I care to admit. This song has everything I love: bit reduced lead that sounds like a Gameboy sample, 909 sans 4 on the floor, huge pads, and vocals drowning in reverb. It’s perfect.
7. Nosaj Thing x Chance The Rapper | Paranoia
No one can detune like Nosaj Thing. The vocals from Chance match the vibe of the instrumentals so perfectly. I also think this song takes the title for all-time best outro. More rappers should go over SONGS not beats.
8. Shigeto | Detroit Part 1
This song always helps me focus. I don’t know what it is about it, but I can focus on anything when this song is on. The spacy lounge piano is so so lovely and the drums sound very organic.
9. Matthew Dear | Deserter
The dichotomy between sad instrumentals and lyrics that tell the story of a happy epiphany is wonderful.
10. Nitemoves | Polypel
I heard this on NPR and it was only for like 10 seconds. A few days later I could still hear it in my head. I listened through NPR archives for hours trying to find it, but I finally did.. This dude has been the drummer for some great groups but I like him better solo. The Acid-inspired bassline is at a more relaxing tempo and the lead sound reminds me of a PPG Wave Choir preset. This song always gives me nostalgia even though it’s a fairly recent release.
+11. Tycho | The Disconnect
OK. I actually do own this vinyl and it is white. Again, borrowed more than I care to admit from Tycho. The vocal in this is like watching an eclipse. So beautiful. ISO50 FOREVER.