I hear it might be cold out. I hear it might be snowing. And that the warmest place might just be in your car on account of some serious blackouts. I'm looking at you Eastern Canada. And probably in a sizeable portion of Canada's Pants as well. So if you *are* driving this evening, even aimlessly, like I am (Macbook in tow, leaching off of free wifi in a Starbucks/Chapters parking lot in West Edmonton) then this playlist is for you. It's full of slow smooth drivers that should put some sugar in your tank, and some lead in your trunk. Perfect for aimless winter driving.
We're going to start things off with something titled very appropriately, it's called Fan the Flame by an arrangement called Gordon's War.
This is a classic hit of low key guitar jazz that is equally at home in an elevator or on that one cable channel that has what's going on on all the other channels on it, in between ads for accident injury lawyers and discount dentists. For me, this one is also at home cruising the side roads of Edmonton. But it's actually cool! When I listen to it, I think of the heyday of the big yellow checker cabs, and seeing them lazily cruise for a fare on the boulevard in some world city like New York or Chicago. This was a 1979 release on Stan-Jay Records, whose headquarters at the time were actually in New York, so that definitely fits.
Next up, once you are all hot and bothered, we are going to go into some strange trip-hop/warped mind with a jazz undertone type of fare.
The Widdler (Such an unusual handle) is represented by a few labels stateside, and coming to us from his home in Austin, TX, by way of Tel Aviv. According to what I can find out, he's been playing in the musical deep end of the pool since he was ten, and since I don't know how old he is, I can guess by virtue of his product that he is either very good or very tenured.
This track made it's debut on an LP called B-sides and Bootlegs, and should be available through iTunes as well as Beatport if you want to support the artist, or available free through Dubstep Records on their website. It's called Affinity, and it is a lovely and very sonically textured affair.
Now, we all know you are out there driving tonight for some reason or no reason at all. Introspectively making a circuit. The nav in my car has a cool feature that leaves a trail of breadcrumbs to show where I have driven. And even driving aimlessly, I've found that I usually have a circuit I travel. Typically (but not always) West onto Stony Plain Road from 149th street, Over onto 186th, up to 107 ave and then east. From there Up 178th to 118 ave and as far east as I can go. Past Nait, up 95th street and then west on 115th ave past my teenhood hood rat home going north on 87th street. 11713 to be exact. From there, east again on 118th and then south on 82nd until carving east on 104th past the cop shop and turning north on 124th street past the metaphysical book stores and boutique BDSM outlets to carve west on 107th ave, through the traffic circle, and then on to home.
We travel through our memories the same way. Sometimes behind the wheel of our cars, and sometimes in our dreams.
With that in mind, I'd like to introduce you to a man whose music you would have heard, but whose connection to where you heard it might be nebulous. Cliff Martinez. He has done soundtracks for a veritable who's who of my favourite movies. Traffic. Drive. And Solaris (the 2k or so remake), which as a movie plays right into the patterns we weave for ourselves and illustrates the dangers of holding too close those things which have slipped away.
So that said, this is a track called First Sleep. Go find the movie, and thank your lucky stars that it's been remade into something much better than the original. For your pattern carving/holding onto the past pleasure, here it is. Expect sonorous hypnotics. Expect orchestral. Expect what you always expected.
And finally this evening, as life out on the road gives way to a not insignificant yearning for the homefire (Hopefully it's burning for you) something to bring you home, and walk you in the front door to greet the angels or demons of your better nature.
This is a good one to cap it off. The pinnacle of a sonic journey. This gem was arranged by none other than a guy famous for loving you like he should. That's right. Fatboy Slim.
Except, this one is one he should have probably had more acclaim for. It's called Demons. And the video itself is plenty good without even accounting for the genius of the choir and a stunning performance on vocals by none other than the woman famous for loving you like she should—Macy Gray.
That concludes this Midnight (Disc) drive. I hope that your roads take you wherever you need to be. Even in the absence of a confirmed destination. Stay warm. Stay cool. Stay between the lines. Stay crazy. Stay sane. But above all... just stay a while and have a listen.