Today The Black Keys are one of the biggest bands on the planet and they sell out arenas on a daily basis, and rightly so. They've toured relentlessly for a decade and recorded seven studio albums. The last two of which launched them into the stratosphere of rock royalty. Brothers and El Camino both made our top of the year lists in 2010 and 2011 respectively. I personally began my love affair with the band in 2009 on a hot summer's day, one of those days where there's absolutely no wind and the heat just sits there waiting to pounce leaving you practically immobile for the effort it takes. I was on Last.FM browsing through recommendations and I saw this two-piece from Ohio appear. I click through to the page and hit play and my mind was immediately blown. The raw sound pumping through the speakers in my sweaty little bedroom would change my musical outlook for the months to come.
When you hear stories about Arctic Monkeys and their inception you hear of Myspace and free CD's. At the peak of Myspace use I must admit, I was all over it daily. I was hesitant to even change to using Facebook once I got to University. However I didn't come upon Arctic Monkeys because of Myspace, I was given a CD from a friend, a CD that simply said Beneath The Boardwalk on it. To this day I have that CD amidst my collection of discs piling up to the Ceiling, it might take me a while to find it but it's there! On that burnt CD was my first impressions of Arctic Monkeys, and as a close minded kid I wasn't that impressed upon first listen. Roll on a few months and the same friend convinces me to jump on a train to Sheffield for £3 to see Alex, Jamie, Matt and Andy. I was converted. I was a fan. I don't know what happened but in that small room I had an epiphany. From that point on this band would play a huge part in my memories of finishing school and going on to Sixth Form and later on, University.
Back to that CD that I was not so fond on after first hearing yet was time and time again found to be in my bedroom stereo. After seeing these songs live they took on a whole new meaning now I was playing them at home. Rough versions of "Riot Van" which features lyrics such as "Smoked a bong last night, and stole somebody's telephone" would later become "Got chased last night, from men with truncheons dressed in hats" on the cleaned up album version for Whatever People Say I Am, That's What I'm Not. Other tracks stood out to me as an impressionable teen were the likes of "Cigarette Smoke" again, the drug reference was a bit of a no go in my house. My Mum is one of the coolest I know but back then she wasn't best pleased with me having Alex Turner blaring "snorting some coke of her thighs" at full blast until the early hours. "Knock A Door Run", "Choo Choo" and "On The Run From MI5", this CD that on first listen I couldn't stand had planted it's roots in my mind and would forever more be there.
Arctic Monkeys would go on to release Whatever People Say I Am, That's What I'm Not in 2005 and it would be the fastest selling UK record in history. 360,000 in week one to be precise. Pretty mad for 4 guys who a few years earlier were studying in Sheffield. It's now 2012 and after Andy left the band Nick O'Malley took over, they've released 3 more albums all to critical acclaim, undoubtedly making them one of the biggest bands in the world. So, without further ado give a listen to some rarities from the Steel City boys below and have a very, very nice Sunday.
The Essential Mix Series on Radio One dates back to 1993, when on the 30th of October, Pete Tong first put out a mix on the show that became the first of hundreds that would grace the airwaves. Nearly 18 years on and they're still going strong as UK phenomenon James Blake put in a great sounding mix featuring just yesterday in the early hours debuting some brand new material from himself along with a wide spectrum of other musical genres. After posting the JB Mix I received a tweet from some friends over at Another Whiskey For Mister Bukowski sending me in the direction of 900+ Essential Mixes dating way back to 1993! 1993!
In the space on two hours I'd gone from one end of the Essential Mixes history with the latest guest spot, way back to the first ever one from Pete Tong himself. I'd of been but a little 4 year old back in 1993, dressed in a Thunderbirds outfit jumping off of my drum kit trying to fly before subsequently falling through the snare drum my Mum had just moments before told me I'd break. I may not of been aware of the vast array of electronic that the club scene was thriving on in the 90's, but, through the joy of ageing and the magical times that we live in we can check out a vast array of music we may have missed whilst trying to fly as a child via the internet.
This bumper sized Sunday Pickup contains Essential Mixes from some of the biggest DJ's the world has ever seen. Sets from the likes of Daft Punk way back in 1997. Fitting after we just 2 days ago got to hear their previously unreleased track from 1994, "Drive". Other mixes come from Justice, Flying Lotus, Norman Cook aka Fatboy Slim, DJ Shadow, Moby (1994), Digitalism, 2 Many DJ's, Mark Ronson, Magnetic Man, Portishead. I could go on to list all 900+ mixes but that would be pointless as you are all at home having a lazy Sunday (maybe), so spend it listening to some classic tracks dating back to 1993 right up until 2007. Have a scroll below and happy listening it should take you about 109K plus hours to get through it all. Better get started! (After the jump there's a few track numbers to help you find the sets in the title eg DAFT PUNK at 743!)
Chromeo's tracks are always up for reworks and remixes so it's nice to see when something comes along and shines out from the crowd. Standing tall from the pack today we have a remix of the funk-duo's track, "Hot Mess". The remix itself has been done by Londoner Joe Attard and Swede David Andersson or as they're collectively known together, Punks Jump Up. Check it out below and grab yourself the download courtesy of the PJU boys themselves via their Soundcloud Page.
Deerhunter Frontman Bradford Cox decided to let us into his hard drive for the holiday season by releasing 4 albums worth of demos from his solo project Atlas Sound. Cox released 2 albums under the Atlas Sound name Let the Blind Lead Those Who Can See but Cannot Feel in 2008 and Logos in 2009. This is a must have any music fan especially since Deerhunter has already hit out of the park with their latest album, Halcyon Digest. Check out some selections from the Bedroom Database series below and then grab the albums after the jump.