Thursday, April 22

CDP Mix-Tape Trade 7 Wrap Party (Finale).

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CREATOR - Smedley

ARTIST - King Crimson

WHO ARE THEY? - The tippy-top of the Prog Rock pyramid.

200 WORDS OR LESS - 'I love the way that they mix their drums.' This was the first thought I had as soon as I put the first of FOUR discs into my computer (Smedley always comes through with the pain concerning the comprehensiveness of his Mixes). Not being a King Crimson scholar (or much of a prog-rock scholar at all), I really listened to the albums trying to understand the majesty, technical prowess and decades-long career of such a beloved group.

A child of the 80's and 90's, my attention span gets squirmy when I encounter a song that treads into ten-minute territory. That being said, they don't necessarily jam in the typically boring way I usually abhor with, you know, Jam Bands. Like most people would probably agree with, I enjoyed their earlier work more than their later stuff, and the bonus Live disk was much appreciated (my goodness are they tight; they sound like one, insane, multifaceted super-artist). All in all, if there's a gateway to prog-rock, Smedley delivered the goods with King Crimson.

CREATOR - Fiona

ARTIST - Within Temptation

WHO ARE THEY? - Dutch Symphony-Metal powerhouse. Female-fronted, epic as all get out, and oh yeah...they've sold over 8 million albums globally.

200 WORDS OR LESS - Europe does Metal better. Every kind of Metal, and holy shit, does Within Temptation come through on the most epic end of the spectrum. Halfway through the first song, I went and put a tie on, as I felt I was under-dressed. Every song sounds like Damien from The Omen is about to enter the room. Darkly beautiful, but not necessarily 'goth.' More like 'Renaissance Fair on Ecstasy.'

The ballads, while beautifully sung by Sharon del Adel, took somewhat of a backseat to the huge, swelling masterworks of epic rock. How could they not? Every song on this album sounded like it should be in the trailer for the next superhero movie, and...well, that's supposed to be a compliment. The production is super-polished (most of this genre is), the synths and multiple-instrumentation mixed wonderfully. It starts strong and finishes stronger. Good jorb.

CREATOR - Heather

ARTIST - Another straight-up Mix of 'New Favorite Bands.'

WHO ARE THEY? - An eclectic Mix of up-and-comers.

200 WORDS OR LESS - As a bonus disk, Heather turned me onto a handful of 'New Favorite Bands' that she had been listening to recently, and I really appreciated it, because they were all really good.

A Camp is the side project of Nina Persson, lead singer of The Cardigans. Cocoon is an absolutely adorable French boy/girl twosome. Jens Lekman is a more notable name; a Swedish-pop guy that is seemingly incapable of writing anything that doesn't stick in my head for days. Beirut is a folk and world-music oriented collective from New Mexico. The Radio Dept. is yet another Swedish group with dreamy melodies and lush choruses (the Swedes always import catchy stuff). Au Revoir Simone is an exclusively electronic (and exclusively female) New York group. Fun formed from the ashes of The Format and Steel Train, and they actually were honored by me last year as the #2 album of 2009 (I really dig their debut album).

What a cultured, eclectic, beautiful Mix; I sincerely liked every single song on it. Thank you.

CREATOR - Heather

ARTIST - Super Junior

WHO ARE THEY? - Can you say 13-MEMBER KOREAN BOY BAND? This contest is over.

200 WORDS OR LESS - Me and Heather have never met, but she knows what I like. Her tastes are so varied and International that she makes me feel uncultured. Her and Fiona are always sending me postcards and photographs, which I find beautiful and appreciative, but then I look around my quiet Madison neighborhood and secretly fantasize robbing a bank and disappearing for the shore. What are you going to do?

If you've ever listened to an Asian pop music, you'll know exactly what this Mix sounds like. Sugar-coated, catchy like you couldn't imagine, and a guilty pleasure that I stopped hiding well over a decade ago. Ever play Dance Dance Revolution? Yeah, like that. What I really like is that some of the lyrics slip into English from time to time, which I always admire from overseas acts. I will play this for my friends the next time I drive them to the Indian restaurant, and I will refuse to turn it off, no matter how much they bitch or complain. Within 30 minutes, they should be good and converted.

Whew, well that's all 24 of them. Before I get into announcing the winner of the FREE CDP T-SHIRT, I want to once again thank you sincerely for making the CDP Worldwide Mix-Tape Trade 7 the best one yet. Every Mix was awesome in its own way, and I never thought when I started this that I would be exposed to such awesome artists, songs and brilliant people (that means you, yo). I've received over 100 of these since we started back in 2007, and I cannot wait to do the next one (Late Summer). So again, thank you so very much.

Out of the 21 Mixes I received that were eligible for the contest, I honestly liked them all. Picking a 'winner' seems borderline insulting and exceedingly frustrating; indicative of a promise I made without fully thinking it through. However, a deal is a deal, so here we go.

BANDS I WAS ALREADY AWARE OF:
The Bran Flakes, Bob Dylan, Lou Reed, Sean Tillman, They Might Be Giants, David Bazan, The Untouchables, The Ergs!, Queen

HONORABLE, HONORABLE MENTIONS:
Lacuna Coil, Jimmy Newquist, King Crimson, Venus Infers, Two Cow Garage, Camille (I've referred Camille to the Missus), Beth Gibbons (also referred to the Missus), The Smart Set, Within Temptation

WINNERS:
Super Junior - (Heather)
Andrew Bird - (Cargirl)

I couldn't choose, so screw it, you both win! I'll be contacting you this weekend with further instructions. Thanks again!

And just when you thought I couldn't get any more charitable, Lost Friday arrives tomorrow. I dare you to tell me that you don't love it here at the CDP. I freaking dare you.

Comments:
Yay! for Heder. She has turned me onto many a weird, totally awesome Korean pop group, which I will be eternally grateful for. What's weirder is she seems to be learning Korean from these bands, and the weird Korean shows we now watch.
Anytime you feel like robbing that bank, we'll be here for you! Make sure to bring Celia, and the cats!
 
I also feel that I've learned a Japanese word or two based on all the J-Pop I've ingested over the years. While I didn't want to pick a 'winner,' I couldn't deny the Mixes I was going to listen to the most. Great stuff all around.
 
Glad you like it - and I also dislike jam bands that just meander, ya know. Songs that are 10+ minutes long aren't bad IF YOU HAVE A POINT! It's also ironic that you like the earlier stuff (with the long songs) instead of the later disc that has the shorter, more conventional tunes!

I've been bored to death by 2:25 seconds of bleah.

13 member boy band? How many harmonies are there? Or is it all unison shouting? I've been intrigued by international bubblegum pop ever since I heard that song by Cola Jet Set that is such a huge earworm.
 
I wish I had a copy of all the mixes -- it truly does seems that they were all strong. And I have some more artists to put in my "need to check out list." I can't blame you for your incision. But still, it's hard to beat a 13-member boy band from Korea.
 
Most excellent!! Like MikeHoss, I wish I had a copy of all the mixes. Thanks to all y'all for participating & introducing me to some new music ~ very exciting!! And many thanks to the CDP for making this happen :)
 
Oooh my gosh! *flails around like the fangirl I am* I'm so glad you liked it! Reading along with all the other reviews I started to get a horrible feeling like the direction I went was so far and away that you may have just thrown the disc out halfway through listening. So I'm over the moon about this ^^. Thank you!
Actually, when I read this post the first time, I saw my name and said "Me!" then saw
ARTIST - Another straight-up Mix of 'New Favorite Bands.' and thought "Oh, not me." - I forgot I sent the bonus disc. The Swedes! Is there ne thing they can't do? Musically that is... If you liked the SuJu disc you should definitely check out the MVs for Sorry Sorry and It's You *whispers*and then learn the dances(!!!)I don't know 'em but they're definitely worth seeing.
This trade was probably my favorite in a while. I got the Lacuna Coil disc in this trade and I don't know why I put off trying them for so long. I really love it! I also listened to the mixes Fifi and Brian received(The Mountain Goats and Kenny's Mix)which were both crazy good!
Robbing a bank and then fleeing to SF? I fairly certain there's and episode of The Streets of San Francisco that starts like that.
 
I didn't realize the mix-tape trade was a Quinn Martin production!
 
SMED - Super Junior sounds like a mix between straight-up American Boy Band and sugar-coated Asian Pop. For those interested more in hooks and melodies than Indie Hipster Factor, I heartily recommend it.

BUT NOT AS MUCH AS I RECOMMEND POLYSICS. TO EVERYONE. THIS MEANS YOU, HEATHER!

HOSS - No kidding. As soon as I saw the CD, I was like, "Oh man, I can't wait."

REESE - Oh, thank YOU, hun. The Smart Set is amazing, and I hope everyone comes back for Trade #8.

HEATHER - You're welcome! I loved both of your Mixes; and don't tempt me about the dances, because I will learn them. :) Oh, and if you like catchy Swedish rock OR spastic J-Punk, I recommend Mando Diao and again, POLYSICS.
 
Congrats to the winners!
I've got a lot of new music to try...
 
Will definitely check them out!
 

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