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Top MP3s of the Week (11/8)

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    cassettes Top MP3s of the Week (11/8)

    There were too many great mp3s this week. We had some trouble narrowing it down to 10 slots, but we’re confident we found the highlights. This week’s countdown offers up a stint of somber jams, with a few burst of energy sprinkled in the mix. Throw on your fall jacket and get cozy with this mix.

    10. Autre Ne Veut & Fennesz – “Alive”

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    In tandem with their five-year anniversary festival, Mexican Summer will also release a limited-edition, hardcover book illustrating the label’s successes through photos and artist contributions. “Alive” brings together two experimental artists under the same roof to contribute a dreamy, passionate offering to this celebration. Fennesz’s atmospheric electronics provide lush dynamics in every movement, ranging from sweeps of symphonic strings to utter ruckus. The vocals from Autre Ne Veut’s Arthur Ashin are a bit calmer, more sensual, leaving off the aggressive performance highlighted on this year’s Anxiety. Be sure to grab a copy of this piece of history to hear more, including contributions from Spiritualized and Ariel Pink. –Sam Willett

    9. Radical Dads – “Creature Out”

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    Following up on their recent record, Rapid Reality, Radical Dads dropped a new 7” earlier this week via EAU Records. The usually spazzy Brooklyn trio opt for a more controlled, spacious song with the A-side, “Creature Out”. Frontwoman Lindsay Baker is still howling her sardonic lyrics, but she’s harnessing a better sense of melody and sounds more confident as a vocalist. Instead of being buried in the mix, like on Rapid Reality, her pipes are front-and-center here. –Jon Hadusek


    8. Porches. – “Townie Blunt Guts”

    Porches - LVL UP split

    With its off-kilter guitars and out-of-key vocals, Porches. channel the ambivalence of the ‘90s on “Townie Blunt Guts”. Fans of Sebadoh’s sloppier tracks will find something to cling to here, whether it be the crunching power chords or half-assed delivery of singer Aaron Maine. This song will be included on a split 7″ with LVL UP that is out this month on Birdtapes, a small New York label that’s becoming a go-to for this kind of lo-fi pop. –Jon Hadusek


    7. Snowbird – “Porcelain”

    Snowbird Top MP3s of the Week (11/8)

    Snowbird, the newest project from Cocteau Twins’ Simon Raymonde and singer-songwriter Stephanie Dosen, is the stuff of evening ecstasy. In reference to their upcoming album, moon, Raymonde stated that he “wrote every piece of music at night, in semi-darkness so the space didn’t feel like my living room. The moon was very important for the light it reflected.” Lead track “Porcelain” captures this beauty with gentle piano keys and waves of soothing vocal tracks, which are twisted into distant echoes and bold chorus harmonies, every layer of this track easy to dream within. –Sam Willett


    6. Peter Gabriel – “Courage”

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    “Courage” was supposed to included on Peter Gabriel’s So, but was left unfinished. “I didn’t feel the song was delivering in the way I had hoped, so I decided not to include it,” he said in a press release. “When we were reviewing all the material from that time, we wanted to take a fresh look at it and get it finished.” A demo version of “Courage” was included on the 25th anniversary edition of So, and Gabriel’s now released a version spruced up by studio mainstay Tchad Blake. Using modern recording techniques (to make it sound less like a demo), the track retains that ‘80s Gabriel charm: bouncy analog synths, spry drums, and a mountain of vocal overdubs. –Jon Hadusek

    5. Garden City Movement – “Move On”

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    Newcomers Garden City Movement infuse natural, earthy sounds into the dream-pop genre, reminiscent of artists like Washed Out. As rain splashes and leaves crinkle in the background, the band paces on gently strummed guitars and warm, echoing vocal samples. They proceed to “piece together the clouds,” strive to “act now,” and “move on,” constantly searching for new places to find beauty and dream some more. –Sam Willett

    4. Eminem – “Don’t Front”

    eminemhorns Top MP3s of the Week (11/8)

    For some reason, Eminem left “Don’t Front” off The Marshall Mathers LP 2. The track’s straightforward approach leaves no room for theatrics — just Em and his rhymes: “The plot begins to thicken/ I begin to spit it like vintage Pac demented/ Demonic, sinister, ever since the Doc replenished me/ The day he gave me that shot when I was just about to quit/ So to not see him wit me would be a shocking image.” Throw in a Black Moon sample and you’ve got raw, vintage Marshall Mathers. The track is included with The Marshall Mathers LP 2/Call of Duty: Ghosts bundle pack–Jon Hadusek

    3. The National – “Lean”

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    The National’s “Lean” is the perfect anthem to capture the fear stimuluated in the hearts of tributes fighting in the Hunger Games. Featured in The Hunger Games: Catching Fire soundtrack, Matt Berninger illustrates the unsteadiness of Katniss and Peeta walking back into the arena once again, crooning, “Everybody wants to know what the end will be, everybody wants to look before they lead.” Not only is the song a perfect contribution for the film, but also an aesthetic continuation of Trouble Will Find Me–Sam Willett

    2. Broken Bells – “Holding On for Life”

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    To introduce their upcoming album, After the Disco, Broken Bells have cooked up a disco-themed mystery that keeps you on the edge of your seat. “Holding On for Life” grooves masterfully with Danger Mouse’s funky synth and bass work, while James Mercer’s steady acoustic grounds the track. The biggest surprise lies in Mercer’s prominent falsetto, resembling disco legends The Bee Gees for one catchy chorus. –Sam Willett

    1. Busta Rhymes feat. Q-Tip – “Thank You”

    bustarhymesqtip 2013 Top MP3s of the Week (11/8)

    After inking a deal with Lil Wayne’s Cash Money Records, Busta Rhymes is set to release his 10th studio album, E.L.E. 2 (Extinction Level Event 2) — the sequel to his 1998 classic. Lead single “Thank You” is a star-studded track, featuring guest verses by Q-Tip and short cameos by Weezy and Kanye West (they say some stuff, but no rapping). Over a guitar sample from Alicia Myers’ “I Want to Thank You”, Busta and Q-Tip dart through their respective verses, the former with his husky growl, the latter with his hyper-melodic flow. It’s a great callback to Busta’s breakout moment on A Tribe Called Quest’s “Scenario”. –Jon Hadusek

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