Download Sandcastles (right click and select “Save Link As…” or “Save Target As…”), or listen here:
01. Yo Gabba Gabba! – I Like To Dance
02. Friendly Fires feat. Au Revoir Simone – Paris (Aeroplane Mix)
03. Drums Of Death – Dodfucksupanescorttune
04. Justice – D.A.N.C.E.
05. Architecture In Helsinki – Debbie (U-Tern Remix)
06. Justice – New Jack
07. Revolte – Blackout
08. Justice feat. Mehdi Pinson – DVNO
09. Goose – Bring It On
10. Daft Punk – Human After All (Guy Man After All Justice Remix)
11. Tepr – Minuit Jacuzzi (DatA Remix)
12. Michael Jackson – Wanna Be Startin’ Something (Streetlife DJ’s Remix)
13. Daft Punk – Robot Rock (Soulwax Remix)
14. Daft Punk – Robot Rock
15. Daft Punk – Harder, Better, Faster, Stronger (Breakers Break Remix)
16. Daft Punk – Harder, Better, Faster, Stronger
17. Daft Punk – One More Time (Laidback Luke Be More Time Edit)
18. Justice Vs. Simian – We Are Your Friends
19. Justice – We Are Your Friends (Live)
20. Daft Punk – Digital Love
21. Stardust – Music Sounds Better With You
22. The BladeRunners – Music Sounds Better With Edits
23. Sebastien Tellier – Kilometer (A-Trak Remix)
24. Chromeo – Tenderoni
25. The Human League – Things That Dreams Are Made Of (Instrumental)
26. Passion Pit – The Reeling (Calvin Harris Remix)
27. Sidechains – Turn Your Body On
28. Klaxons – As Above, So Below (Justice Remix)
29. GRUM – Go Back (Le Castle Vania Remix)
30. Dizzee Rascal & Armand Van Helden – Bonkers
31. Fake Blood – Mars
32. Kidda – Under The Sun (Herve Remix)
33. The Hours – See The Light (Calvin Harris Remix)
34. Treasure Fingers – Cross The Dancefloor (Lifelike Remix)
35. MSTRKRFT – Fist Of God
36. Nadastrom – Pussy
37. Kill The Noise – Pull My Strings
38. Kriss Kross – Jump (Funkanomics Planet Cross Remix)
39. Foamo – Movin’ It Over Here
40. Mystery Jets – Half In Love With Elizabeth (Foamo Remix)
41. Armand Van Helden – I Want Your Soul (Fake Blood Remix)
42. Bob Sinclar feat. The Sugarhill Gang – Lala Song
43. The Bucketheads – The Bomb (Burns Remix)
44. MGMT – Kids (Soulwax Remix)
45. Kissy Sell Out – This Kiss (Jack Beats Remix)
46. Digitalism – Home Zone
47. MSTRKRFT feat. N.O.R.E. & Isis – Bounce
48. Foamo – Everything Cool
49. Shitdisco – 72 Virgins (Bloody Beetroots Remix)
50. Mr. Oizo – Gay Dentists
51. The Black Ghosts – Anyway You Choose To Give It (Fake Blood Remix)
52. Cryptonites – I Can’t Give You Up (Kill The Noise Remix)
53. Kid Cudi – Day ‘N’ Nite (Crookers Remix)
54. Calvin Harris – I’m Not Alone
55. Calvin Harris – Traffic Cops
This mix pretty much sums up a huge part of my 2007-2009. Around this time, I started listening to more and more French House, Electro Pop, Nu Disco, Electro House, etc., mostly thanks to this sexy lass and her show on BBC Radio 1:
When people ask me, “Do you like Pop music?”, I always respond, “Yeah, sort of, it depends… are we talking American Pop music, or the type of stuff that Annie Mac plays?” I always have to clarify because some of the music that she plays on her weekly show is very Pop-sounding, and yet still very much “underground” (i.e., when compared to the big name British and American Pop acts).
Sandcastles was originally made as a giveaway back in 2009 for the now-defunct Hello Friends site (which I often contributed content to). My goal was to make a complex, creative mix that had constant energy. It starts out slow, but once it gets going, it doesn’t stop. To achieve this, I edited almost every song so that only the best, most hypest parts were kept.
But I didn’t want this to just be a “Summer Jams of 2009” mix… I wanted to make it more epic and include some of the important classics from prior years (hence, the Human League and Stardust songs). Also, if a lot of people already knew some of the songs (like all of the old Daft Punk stuff), then I would at least do something different to them to keep the mix interesting and the songs sounding “fresh”. In retrospect, the only regret that I have with “Sandcastles” is that I forget to include one major song, so I’ll try to make up for it here:
Download Count & Sinden feat. Kid Sister – “Beeper” or listen here:
Download Count & Sinden feat. Kid Sister – “Beeper (A-Trak Remix)” or listen here:
Download Count & Sinden feat. Kid Sister – “Beeper (Fake Blood Remix)” or listen here:
When I first began to discover this sort of music, I found myself being drawn to songs that reminded me of the early to mid 1980’s style of tape editing, sequencing, and sampling often heard in old school Rap, Freestyle, and Electro. A lot of the songs on “Sandcastles” emulate these early production styles and techniques, but instead of spending hours cutting up reel-to-reels and taping them back together, producers are now using computer software to chop up and stutter sounds in a matter of minutes!
Tape editing must have been a painstakingly difficult task. Here’s a quick video showing the “basics” of reel-to-reel tape editing:
And here’s what an edited reel-to-reel mix looks and sounds like during playback:
In the early to mid 1980’s, there were a handful of people known for their tape edit skills… the most popular being Albert Cabrera and Tony Moran, also known as the Latin Rascals. There are lot of their edits floating around on the internet, and I strongly urge you to do a YouTube search for “Latin Rascals supermix”, “Latin Rascals mastermix”, “Latin Rascals KISS FM”, etc.
Another popular team consisted of Chep Nunez and Omar Santana, who I was much more familiar with because of the work that they did for Mantronix, Just-Ice, and T La Rock. The first example of theirs that I remember hearing was on a Just-Ice song, “Put That Record Back On”. Check out the edits that they did on “Put That Record Back On” here and here. They also did a lot of work for T La Rock, as can be heard on “Breakin’ Bells” here and here, on “Bass Machine” here and here, and on “This Beat Kicks” here and here.
Chep Nunez and Omar Santana were best known for their editing and sequencing work on the first three Mantronix albums. What was unique about these early Mantronix albums was that they always featured a megamix on them, where they took songs from that particular release, edited them to death and re-sequenced them. Here is the megamix from the first album “Mantronix”, here is the megamix from the second album “Music Madness”, and here is the megamix from the third album “In Full Effect ’88”.
Back in the 1980’s, when I was young and listening to all of this stuff for the first time, I wasn’t even aware of who Chep and Omar were. I didn’t care about production credits and other minutiae like that, nor did I really understand what things like “edited by”, “sequenced by”, “mixed by”, and “mastered by” actually meant. It wasn’t until many years later that I began to pay attention to some of these details and realize their importance.
For example, a song that I remember from back in the day was Masters Of Ceremony “Cracked Out”. I had no idea that Omar Santana had anything to do with this song. You can hear Omar’s edits on “Cracked Out” here, here, and here.
I was also surprised to find out that Omar was responsible for the edits on the song that Stetsasonic is best known for, “Talkin’ All That Jazz“. You can hear Omar’s edits on that song here, here, and here.
About 10 years ago, people started getting into “Random Rap“. One of the releases that got rediscovered during this time was K-Rob “I’m A Homeboy”, which, come to find out, had the Latin Rascals’ hands all over it. Check out the Latin Rascals edits on “I’m A Homeboy” here, here, and here.
So what do all of these old rap songs have to do with “Sandcastles”? Well, it was my familiarity with (and nostalgia for!) this style of editing and production that drew me towards particular French House, Nu Disco, and Electro House songs… many of which I included in my “Sandcastles” mix. To make the connection between the old and new a little more clear, go back and re-watch the video of that old reel-to-reel mix that I posted above. Also, check out this classic old school Freestyle song, “Hooked On You”, by Sweet Sensation. Omar Santana did some really awesome edits on “Hooked On You”, and you can hear them here, here, here, and here.
For more links to the history of tape edits, as well as a brief musical history of some of the early cut’n’paste classics, check out my “Break Beat Jones” post.