Photograph by Andrew Paynter

Photograph by Andrew Paynter

It’s hard to believe we’re four months into 2013. Winter has worn out its welcome, spring is slowly creeping into the picture, and another year of university has come to a close. This mixtape is pretty self-explanatory: a collection of nine tracks that have accompanied me through yet another semester.

Atoms for Peace

Atoms for Peace – Default

A cold, calculated piece of electronic sprawl from Thom Yorke and company. I love the clickety-clack beat and the icy synths on the chorus, which are so hostile and distant. It feels like I’m back in the land of Kid A.

Continue Reading ‘The Sounds of the Semester’ Mixtape »

Tags: Atoms for Peace, Earl Sweatshirt, James Blake, Nick Cave & the Bad Seeds, Rustie, The Doppelgangaz, The Underachievers, Toro Y Moi, Tyler the Creator, Wavves

— , April 30, 2013    No Comments

Toronto alt-folk group Fort York are having a busy month. With an Indiegogo campaign in full flight to help fund the recording of a new album and shows planned all over the city, I asked the guys to take over mixtape duties for me and tell me what they’re listening to as they write new songs for their upcoming EP. The result is a mix so eclectic that I can only assume their new album will strive to be all things to all people. From J Dilla to Dirty Projectors, and Bob Lind to King Tubby, I was excited to see some of my personal favourites and discover some new songs that have been on heavy rotation since. Below you’ll find Conor and Rory Lavelle, Nick Kewin and Kyle Fulton’s choices with some brief thoughts on what they like about each of their picks. When asked to contribute anything further, drummer Dan Lefebvre simply said “I think y’all got it covered” – I’d have to agree.

Continue Reading ‘Fort York’ Mixtape »

Tags: Attack in Black, August, Bob Lind, Bruce Springsteen, Dirty Projectors, Fela Kuti, Fort York, Frank Ocean, Glen Campbell, Guided By Voices, J Dilla, Jim Sullivan, King Tubby, Megafaun, Modest Mouse, Nick Cave, Sigur Ros, Tame Impala, Tom Waits

— , August 24, 2012    No Comments

Last week I posted twelve of my recent favourite tracks, seven of which were by Californians, earning the mixtape the name California Sunrise. It varied from electropop to reggae and soca-infused funk and there’s an equal variety to be found in part 2 of the Summer mixtape series. If part 1 was the build-up, then part 2 is the break-down. I’ve tried to stack this mix with a few more mellow jams on the back-end, to pair with those inevitable late-July lamentations of the “summer’s half over already!” variety. Youth Lagoon is a fantastic band name and a fictitious place that I’d like to go to one day. If I did, here’s what I imagine it would sound like:

Download | Youth Lagoon Mixtape

Trey Songz vs. Cut Copy – Invented You Now (The Hood Internet Mash-Up)

I don’t think I know how to make a mix without a good Hood Internet mash-up. Here the duo take Cut Copy’s ‘Need You Now’ from their fantastic new album Zonoscope and mix it with R&B crooner Trey Songz’ immortal ‘You Gon Think I Invented Sex’. I watched an interview where Songz decoded his metaphorical lyrics for the audience, explaining that “the song is about how I lay pipe so good that you gon think I invented sex, even though I didn’t, feel me?” Yes Trey, we feel you. Particularly when the vocals from your track with Canadian-pride Drake are over-top of this brilliantly chopped up Cut Copy beat.

Continue Reading ‘Youth Lagoon’ Mixtape »

Tags: Au Revoir Simone, Cut Copy, El Guincho, Generationals, Givers, Hood Internet, Peter Bjorn and John, Teen Daze, Tennis, The Shins, U.S. Royalty, Washed Out, Youth Lagoon

— , July 20, 2011    2 Comments

Sometimes, there’s too much good music. Mixtapes are a chance to pick and choose from the spectrum of too muchness and bring friends and readers some of the best of what I’ve heard recently. But sometimes there’s still too much, which is why I decided to split this mix into 2 parts, or ‘sides’, if you will. Part 1 is California Sunrise, because as you’ll learn quickly in the captions below, California has inadvertently become a major theme in my listening choices as of late. Like past mixes, this one’s heavily influenced by how I feel with the on-set of my favourite time of year, and is an effort to share a soundtrack perfect for your sun-kissed days and sweaty nights. Stay tuned for part 2 next week.

Download | California Sunrise Mixtape

Blackbird Blackbird – Sunspray

As promised, this mix comes chock-full of Californian inspiration. ‘Sunspray’ starts the trend, with band Blackbird Blackbird hailing from San Francisco. Since March of last year, they’ve steadily released a series of EPs leading to this March’s Summer Heart full-length. My favourite track by the band comes from their second EP Let’s Move on Together. The unintelligibly faint vocals layered overtop synths create a delicate yet danceable tune, seemingly made for an intimate slow dance in a sea of raging fast-dancers.

Continue Reading ‘California Sunrise’ Mixtape »

Tags: AgesandAges, Bibio, Blackbird Blackbird, Born Ruffians, Boys Like Us, Cold War Kids, Crystal Fighters, Diamond Rings, Dirty Gold, Foster the People, Grand Analog, Magic Bullets, Passion Pit, The Ross Sea Party

— , July 11, 2011    3 Comments

Photograph by Handsome Joel Hansen

The holidays tend to be rife with tension, and our Ca Va Cool family is no exception. Picking only 20 albums from 2010′s offerings is tricky; every year, some fantastic records/EPs/tracks are overlooked. Our super-secret ranking process starts from civilized debate and degenerates into name-calling, tantrums and sulking. To pacify the whiners and to give you, the readers, more awesome music, we present our 2010 mixtape. Happy 2011!

Download | The Ca Va Cool 2010 Mixtape – Disc One

01. School of Seven Bells – Windstorm
02. Titus Andronicus – Theme from “Cheers”
03. Sharon Van Etten – Love More
04. Harlem – Someday Soon
05. Baths – Hall
06. Gorillaz – Empire Ants feat. Little Dragon
07. The Black Keys – Unknown Brother
08. Wye Oak – My Creator
09. Ariel Pink’s Haunted Graffiti – Can’t Hear My Eyes
10. Superchunk – Everything at Once

Download | The Ca Va Cool 2010 Mixtape – Disc Two

01. Library Voices – Haunt This House
02. A Sunny Day in Glasgow – Drink Drank Drunk
03. Young Man – Up So Fast
04. Owen Pallett – Scandal at the Parkade
05. Future Islands – Long Flight
06. The Morning Benders – Excuses
07. Gold Panda – India Lately
08. Jenny and Johnny – My Pet Snakes
09. Lindstrøm & Christabelle – Lovesick
10. Spoon – Got Nuffin’

Tags: A Sunny Day in Glasgow, Ariel Pink's Haunted Graffiti, Baths, Future Islands, Gold Panda, Harlem, Jenny and Johnny, Library Voices, Lindstrøm & Christabelle, Owen Pallett, School of Seven Bells, Sharon Van Etten, Spoon, Superchunk, The Black Keys, The Morning Benders, Titus Andronicus, Wye Oak

— , December 31, 2010    No Comments