"Multitrack recording (also known as multitracking or just tracking for short) is a method of sound recording that allows for the separate recording of multiple sound sources to create a cohesive whole."

Thursday, December 13, 2012

Smashley's Best Music of 2012

This marks the 6th year in which I've decided to compile my favorite music of the year in one place and each year, I get a little dorkier about it. What started as a MySpace bulletin/blog post has morphed into an excursion that basically kicks off around January. It's gotten so dorky, in fact, that not only did I make a spreadsheet, but I even went so far as to count down my top 100 songs via Facebook/Twitter since mid-November. It's safe to say, when December rolls around, I probably look forward to this more than Christmas.

All that said, I'm just a girl who happens to have a job in music who also happens to like it (for some people, that's mutually exclusive.) As the years go on, I am more and more influenced by my work, but more often than not my choices reflect something uniquely Ashley while remaining timeless, which is really all we can ask them to do. This year, more than any of them, I feel there is the biggest thread that weaves through each of these. From now on, when anyone asks me what kind of music I listen to, I can probably just point them here.

Without further a-do, here are my Top 10 albums of 2012, followed by the Top 100 songs. As per usual, my album choices will be summed up in 140 characters or less and will let the music do the rest of the talking.

Please enjoy.

Top Albums of 2012
(Top to bottom awesome. In particular order of course.)
Listen to all of them here.

10) Family of the Year - Loma Vista
In 140 characters or less: Glad I gave this joyful band a 2nd chance. This particular song is the cutest ever. If I could print a shirt with all the lyrics, I would.

9) The Lumineers - The Lumineers 
In 140 characters or less: It was love at first Daytrotter stream and charming enough to convert the masses, too. One of the most sincere live performances I've seen.

8) Bad Books - II

In 140 characters or less: This ultimate bromance has struck gold again, as two excellent songwriters backed by a tight support band create SERIOUS harmonies & hooks

7) Dry the River - Shallow Bed 

In 140 characters or less: Mumford & Sons' moodier & less banjo-y younger brothers. The knee-jerk reaction people get when they hear this band is why I work in music.

6) Fun. - Some Nights 

In 140 characters or less: It only took 10 years for the rest of the world to finally hear what made The Format so special. A gigantic triumph in jangle pop.

5) Desert Noises - I Won't See You EP

In 140 characters or less: In just 3 songs, they managed to out-do most full albums released in 2012. Hoping for a breakthrough for music's best kept secret in 2013

4) Good Old War - Come Back as Rain 

In 140 characters or less: Immaculate harmonies and joyous, brilliant pop choruses make this their strongest effort to date. So beautiful & unmistakably Good Old War.

3) Kopecky Family Band - Kids Raising Kids
In 140 characters or less: Calling this band right now as the next dark horse. A debut effort that outshines some seasoned vets and is downright refreshing.

Bonus: "Change" http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ew9TMJHH7V4 
This song is much different than the rest of the album, but unbelievably captivating. If you're a music supervisor, it should be in your movie.

 2) Lord Huron - Lonesome Dreams
In 140 characters or less: An 11th hour discovery and first-listen obsession. Stunning, soaring, smart and so exciting that this is just their first album.

1) The Rocketboys - Build Anyway
In 140 characters or less: No buzz, blogs or pretension. Just stumbling on them when The Echo sound guy played "Bloodless," between sets. Nothing short of awe inspiring.

Top 100 Songs
(In somewhat particular order, but mostly towards the end.)
Listen to all of them here.

#100: Waters - "For the One" 
#99: Admiral Fallow - "Brother"
#98 : Bowerbirds - "Overcome with Light" 
#97 : Carly Rae Jepsen - "Beautiful" 
#96: Little Green Cars - "The John Wayne"
#95: Hudson Taylor - "Battles"
#94: The Helio Sequence - "October"
#93 : Imagine Dragons - "Demons"
#92: Typhoon - "Common Sentiment" 
#91 : The Tallest Man on Earth - "There's No Leaving Now" 
#90: Yellow Ostrich - "Stay at Home" 
#89 : Torche - "Kicking" 
#88: Bahamas - "Lost in the Light" 
#87: Matchbox Twenty - "I Will" 
#86 : Conner Youngblood - "The Warpath" 
#85 : Margot and the Nuclear So & So's - "A Journalist Falls in Love with Deathrow Inmate #16" 
#84: Matt Pryor - "Your New Favorite" 
#83: A Lull - "Summer Dress"
#82: Brandi Carlile - "That Wasn't Me" 
#81: Brian Lopez - "Montjuic" 
#80: Islands - "Hallways"
#79: Glen Hansard - "Love Don't Keep Me Waiting"
#78: Benjamin Gibbard - "Lily" 
#77: Rocky Votolato - "Little Spring"
#76: Ben Kweller - "Mean to Me" 
#75: This Century - "Skeletons"
#74: Fanfarlo - "Shiny Things"
#73: Passenger - "Let Her Go"
#72: Jack White - "Sixteen Saltines" 
#71: Nicki Minaj - "Beez in the Trap" 
#70: Right Away Great Captain - "I Am Aware" 
#69: Quiet Corral - "City Steep" 
#68: Dr. Dog - "Over Here, Over There" 
#67: alt-J - "Breezeblocks" 
#66: Act As If - "Oh My My
#65: Jay William Henderson - "The Sun Will Burn Our Eyes" 
#64: Two Door Cinema Club - "Sleep Alone"
#63: Night Beds - "Even if We Try" 
#62: Andrew Bird - "Eyeoneye"
#61: Josh Ritter - "Why"
#60: Michael Kiwanuka - "I'm Getting Ready"
#59: Bruno Mars - "Young Girls" 
#58: Ladylike - "Cinema Kiss" 
#57: Ivan & Alyosha - "Running For Cover"
#56: Sam Means - "Will You Hang Around" 
#55: Stepdad - "My Leather, My Fur, My Nails"
#54: Great Lake Swimmers - "Easy Come, Easy Go"
#53: Vinyl Thief - "Faces" 
#52: Roll the Tanks - "Goodnight Jimmy Lee"
#51: Hit the Lights - "Earthquake" 
#50: M. Ward - "Primitive Girl"
#49: Miniature Tigers - "Boomerang" 
#48: Taylor Swift ft. The Civil Wars - "Safe and Sound"
#47: The Mowglis - "San Francisco" 
#46: Jukebox the Ghost - "Oh Emily"
#45: Princeton - "Florida"
#44: John Mayer - "Queen of California"
#43: Morning Parade - "Headlights"
#42: Dinosaur Feathers - "Certain Times" 
#41: Geographer - "The Myth of Youth" 
#40: Of Monsters and Men - "Your Bones"
#39: Civil Twilight - "Every Walk That I've Ever Taken Has Been in Your Direction"
#38: Gospel Claws - "Hambone" 
#37: The Wanted - "Glad You Came" 
#36: Rufus Wainwright - "Out of the Game"
#35: Silversun Pickups - "Bloody Mary (Nerve Endings)"
#34: Gold Fields - "Moves" 
#33: Maroon 5 ft. Rozzi Crane - "Come Away to the Water"
#32: Electric Guest - "American Daydream"
#31: Dead Sara - "Weatherman"
#30: Local Natives - "Breakers"
#29: Green Day - "Oh Love"
#28: The Avett Brothers - "Live and Die" 
#27: The Secret Sisters - "Tomorrow Will Be Kinder"
#26: Neon Trees - "Everybody Talks" 
#25: Release the Sunbird - "I Will Walk" 
#24: Damien Jurado - "Museum of Flight"
#23: Fort Atlantic - "No One Will Know" 
#22: Band of Horses - "Knock Knock"
#21: One Direction - "What Makes You Beautiful" 
#20: Husky - "History's Door" 
#19: Walk the Moon - "Shiver, Shiver"
#18: Robert Francis - "Eighteen"
#17: Cory Chisel & the Wandering Sons - "Seventeen"
#16: John K. Samson - "When I Write My Masters Thesis"
#15: Passion Pit - "Carried Away"
#14: The Fray - "Be Still"
#13: Maroon 5 ft. Wiz Khalifa - "Payphone"
#12: Father John Misty - "Only Son of the Ladiesman"
#11: Amos Lee - "The Darkness"
#10: James Vincent McMorrow - "Sparrow & the Wolf" 
#9: The Shins  - "It's Only Life"
#8: Sara Bareilles - "Bright Lights and Cityscapes" 
#7: Reubens Accomplice - "Field Science" 
#6: Nada Surf - "The Moon is Calling" 
#5: Ed Sheeran - "The A Team" 
#4: Delta Spirit - "California"
#3: Mumford & Sons - "Lover of the Light"
#2: Japandroids - "The House that Heaven Built"
#1: Ben Howard - "Old Pine" 

'Til 2013! 

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

Smashley's Best Music of 2011

First of all, apologies for any confusion about what happened to this blog. In short: I moved myself across the country in April and subsequently, fell off the face of the Earth. Plans are being made to re-launch Multitracking: A Mix Exchange as it once was in 2012, with more mixers and more follow-through. Stay tuned!

But since I had no where else to host this, here's my Best of 2011 (for music, of course, since I have no other social skills.) Nicely compacted into internet-friendly, short-attention-span format, complete with 140-characters-or-less explanations and a whole lotta links. 

You can also listen to all of the artists/songs here, if you're into that sort of thing:

Here's to another year of still liking music, 

With love, 

  Top 10 Albums of 2011 
(Top to bottom awesome. In particular order, of course.) 

10) The Belle Brigade - The Belle Brigade
In 140 characters or less: Brother/sister duo with impeccable vocal synergy and infectious folk-infused pop sensibilities. Also: a video with SO MANY PUPPIES.

9) Ryan Adams - Ashes and Fire
In 140 characters or less: The revitalization of an old love for Mr. Adams, featuring in the most honest Ryan incarnation that he's had in many years. 

8) Typhoon - A New Kind of House
In 140 characters or less: Didn't quite get them the last record, but this EP feels like a much more concentrated effort to polish some of the chamber-pop chaos.

7) The Decemberists - The King is Dead
In 140 characters or less: This band finally stops keeping their fans at arm's length with less rock opera and more strategic songwriting. A perfect album. 

6) Augustana - Augustana
In 140 characters or less: Highly under appreciated and misrepresented band who clearly spent a lot of time with Counting Crows before putting this album to tape

5) The Head and the Heart - The Head and the Heart
In 140 characters or less: A happy, unique surprise in a sort of crowded folk revival. As tight a musical outfit as I've heard in a very long time.  

4) Source Victoria - Slow Luck
In 140 characters or less: It's been a long time since I've looked forward to an album as much as this one. A brooding, pulls-you-head-first-into-it, atmospheric triumph

3) Bon Iver - Bon Iver
In 140 characters or less: There is absolutely no room for skeptics or cynicism here: from a one-man-show to a nine-man-army, this project is 100% the real deal. 

2) Desert Noises - Mountain Sea
In 140 characters or less: One of the best kept secrets in music, by far. I have a lot of hope for this little band from Utah with a totally massive harmonized sound.

1) Blind Pilot - We Are the Tide
In 140 characters or less: Whatever didn't spark for me the last album quickly ignited into a flame. Beautifully produced, exceptionally written folk-pop masterpiece.

 Top 40 Songs of 2011 
(Some from albums I may have fully enjoyed, some are the only songs I liked . Which is which is left a mystery. In sort of particular order, mostly near the top.)

40) Allen Stone - "Unaware"
From: Allen Stone

39) Fun. ft. Janelle Monae - "We Are Young"
From: Some Nights (2012)

38) The Fray - "Heartbeat"
From: Scars and Stories (2012)

37) Ladylike - "On to Me"
From: Vol. 1

36) Kreayshawn - "Gucci Gucci"
From: Gucci Gucci

35) M83 - "Midnight City"
From: Hurry Up, We're Dreaming

34) Dale Earnhardt Jr. Jr. - "Nothing But Our Love"
From: It's a Corporate World

33) Oh Land - "Rainbow"
From: Oh Land

32) Bayside - "Already Gone" 
From: Killing Time

31) Blink 182 - "Up All Night"
From: Neighborhoods

30) A Lull - "Some Love"
From: Confetti

29) SPEAK - "You Know As Well As I"
From: I Believe in Everything

28) Portugal. The Man - "Got it All (This Can't Be Living Now)"
From: In the Mountain In the Clouds

27) Noel Gallagher's High Flying Birds - "If I Had a Gun"
From: Noel Gallagher's High Flying Birds

26) What Laura Says - "Girl Not Gonna Leave"
From: TALK

25) Foster the People - "Houdini"
From: Torches

24) Childish Gambino - "Fire Fly"
From: Camp

23) Gym Class Heroes - "Stereo Hearts"
From: The Papercut Chronicles

22) ARMS - "Fleeced"
From: Summer Skills

21) Accidental Seabirds - "Untitled"
From: The Snow and the Full Moon

20) J. Cole - "Work Out"
From: Cole World -The Sideline Story

19) Death Cab for Cutie - "You Are a Tourist"
From: Codes and Keys

18) Paramore - "Monster"
From: Monster

17) The Whisperlights - "Ditch the Watch"
From: Surfaces

15) Boy & Bear - "The Feeding Line"
From: Moonfire

14) The Script - "If You Ever Come Back"
From: Science & Faith

13) Kopecky Family Band - "Little Baby Sister"
From: Of Epic Proportions

12) Adele - "Set Fire to the Rain"
From: 21

11) Austin Gibbs - "Held Her a Little Too Tight"
From: Charlie

10) Fleet Foxes - "Montezuma"
From: Helplessness Blues

9) Kinch - "Once, I Was a Mainsail"
From: The Incandenza

8) Vanaprasta - "Self Indulgent Feeling"
From: Healthy Geometry

7) Cage the Elephant - "Shake Me Down"
From: Thank You Happy Birthday

6) The Summer Set - "When We Were Young"
From: Everything's Fine

5) Incubus - "Switchblade"
From: If Not Now When?

4) Walk the Moon - "Anna Sun"
From: I Want! I Want!

3) Matt Nathanson - "Faster"
From: Modern Love

2) Manchester Orchestra - "Simple Math"
From: Simple Math

1) Grouplove - "Colours"
From: Never Trust a Happy Song

  Final 5 Fun Facts of 2011 
(Because I can.) 

5) Best Music Video:  
Manchester Orchestra - "Simple Math"

4) Best Non-2011 Discovery: 
Good Old War -  Only Way to Be Alone

3) Favorite Show of 2011:
Incubus - Performing Make Yourself front to back
@ Incubus HQ

2) Favorite Album Cover of 2011: 

1) Most Anticipated (rumored) in 2012:

  • Nada Surf
  • Fanfarlo
  • Mumford and Sons
  • Good Old War
  • Miniature Tigers
  • Fun.
  • Ben Kweller
  • The Fray 

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

Guest Mixer: Ree Boado (Dearspeak)

Hello fellow music lovers,

I'm Ree Boado, a singer songwriter and front woman of indie rock band, Dearspeak, here in Phoenix, AZ. We're currently working on an EP entitled Oh, For Freedom!, due out in May, and will be touring quite a bit this summer. Check us out at dearspeak.com, as well as my solo project, reeboado.com if you like. You just might catch some of the following influences in our music. And maybe I'll end up in your city this summer... couch surfing with your neighbor, or eating at your favorite sandwich shop... or maybe just at a nearby venue where I hope you'll stop by to listen. :^]

I shall proceed to name some of my favorite artists and their oh-so emotive tunes that get to me every time. These are 12 songs charged with raw emotion, lyrical depth, great vocals, with an arresting nature about them... all ingredients for a killer song.

"Arrest Me!" playlist:

1. Mumford and Sons - "Awake My Soul" (Live)
I sure need a good awakening sometimes, and this song helps. This is one of my favorite bands and they are amazing live!

2. Carina Round - "Everything a Reason" (Live version)
Don't know the story behind this song, but it is intense and so is her performance of it... seriously dynamic artist.

3. Sufjan Stevens - "John Wayne Gacy Jr."
This is one crazy song about the secrets we all hide and the evils that can lurk beneath "our floorboards". Comparison to a mass murderer.. thought provoking.

4. Arcade Fire - "Wake Up" (Live)
I know we're long past the craze on this song, but it still makes me feel good every time I listen to it. Oh, all the lies that we believe... great lyrics.

5. Sia - "Breathe Me"
I still remember when I heard this years ago on the radio for the first time... I rarely get taken aback by anything on the radio, but this one did that.

6. Tal & Acacia - "Hope Again"
Someone gave me a cd with this song on it. It was written for the victims of human trafficking, an issue that is sadly much more real in the U.S. than we'd like to think. Inspiring.

7. Regina Spektor - "Laughing With"
Profound and quirky.. love it.

8. Damien Rice - "9 Crimes"
Beuuuutiful song.

9. Norah Jones - "Humble Me"
Thought I'd throw this in for variety... really touching with beautiful vocals.

10. Death Cab for Cutie - "What Sarah Said"
If you've ever watched someone die like I have, this song WILL get inside you.

11. Jeff Buckley - "Hallelujah"
Jeff's version of this song is the best in my opinion, and it just doesn't get old. What a mesmerizing voice that carried so much sadness. R.I.P.

12. Carina Round - "Back Seat"
I love this artist and I want everyone to know her! So true, things often aren't the way they should be in this world. Thanks for bringing some hope for us all Carina!

I hope you love these songs as much as I do!


Saturday, April 2, 2011

Gotta Love That Country Meow-sic

In January me and a few of my best friends in the world spent 24 hours eating, drinking, walking through the snow, making fun of southern accents and listening to great live music in Nashville. Even though it ended with the possibly the worst night sleep in my life taking place in the Nashville International Airport it was a great time. We headed out to New Orleans the next day then finally ended up in Austin. All three are great music cities but the sounds of Nashville were by far the best and furthered my love of country music. Our trip was documented by fellow mixer Pat Burnell so check it out and if you ever have a chance to go to Nashville (aka Nash-Vegas) you should jump at the chance. See all the live music you can see and take my advice and get a hotel room. Following the tour video is my playlist inspired by Nashville.

1. George Jones - He Stopped Loving Her Today
Starting it off with a bummer. The saddest song ever written and my favorite country song of all time.

2. Dolly Parton - Last Night's Lovin'
This is a B-Side to Jolene and just ridiculously awesome. Just forget about how outrageous the lyrics are and just dance.

3. Johnny Cash - Boy Named Sue
Johnny Cash was more of a story writer than a song writer. I think this song proves that point.

4. Willie Nelson - Can I Sleep In Your Arms
I saw WIllie a few weeks ago at the Chicago theatre and he didn't disappoint. He may not be the best looking guy in the world but with songs like this I'm sure hes done pretty well with the ladies.

5. Kenny Rodgers - The Gambler
Just a classic. The Beastie Boys said it best when they said "Kenny Rogers Gambler is my gambling theme." If you like to gamble it should be yours too.

6. Loretta Lynn - Portland, OR
The only song from the 2000s that made the cut. This Jack White produced track is probably the best thing to come from the genre in a few decades. I used to listen to it on every drive from Seattle to Portland and no matter when I listen to it I think of really great times in my life. I think thats what country music and music in general should do.

7. Hank Williams - I'm So Lonesome I Could Cry
Hank goes down as the greatest country singer ever and one of the biggest tragedies in music history. This song of his is my favorite but everyone should own his "40 Greatest Hits" collection.

8. Wayne Cochran - Last Kiss
My Pearl Jam reference for this post. One of their biggest hits was a cover of a little known country song. As hard as it is for me to admit I probably like the original better. The back up singers make it. Check out the video of Eddie coming back from an encore break to sing it on top of the sound booth at the Gorge. Fast forward to about 2:30.

9. Garth Brooks - The Dance
Garth Brooks was the last great country star. Before Chris Gains and his ridiculous arena shows he wrote some amazing songs. There was probably a decade before him and after him with nothing good emerging from the genre. Hopefully, that will change soon. This youtube memorial to Dale Earnhardt is probably the highlight of my day.

10. Waylon Jennings - Good Hearted Woman
No matter where you went in Nashville you heard a Waylon song. You can hear a Waylon cover being sang but a female vocalist in our tour video and a crazy dude dancing his ass off to it. I want this song to be the theme song of my life.

11. Patsy Cline - I Fall To Pieces
Another bummer of a song. Holy crap. Try not to cry. I'm sorry its just too good not to include.

12. Waylon Jennings & Willie Nelson - Mamas Don't Let Your Babies Grow Up To Be Cowboys
Two of the best. This is the most country song I can possibly imagine. I almost feel bad for loving it and not being from the south.