I had so much fun making the last Campfire Songs Mixtape that I decided to make another one. Both retro and modern with that warm familial feeling that makes a campfire so fun to be around. As always, the mixtape is free but feel free to support all the artists by buying their albums. To download a song just right-click the song link after the description, hope you enjoy. The full mixtape after the jump.
1. Tomorrow Goes Away- Delta Spirit
Featured on the last post, this little ditty is a great opener to a mix, with its understated beauty and sonic clarity, like watching the sun come up in the early morning.
2. Daytime Nighttime Suffering- Wings
For a musical artist so critically maligned after his former group disbanded, McCartney has never heard the tongue lashings over his melodic content, an innate talent that ha put him in the same sentence with the likes of Gershwin and Porter.
3. (You) Got What I Need- Freddie Scott
Long before Biz Markie strained his vocal chords to hit the chorus on his rap adaptation, this little number was a little known soul classic and it still sounds just as good.
4. New Coat- White Denim
“New Coat” came out on a free LP that the ever eclectic White Denim came out with over the summer and it’s probably the finest song I’ve heard in a while with great guitar work and a catchy melody, and some damn good lyrics about love.
5. Spanish Bombs- The Clash
When I started out on this blog, one of the first album reviews I ever did was on The Clash’s London Calling. What I said then still stands. Spanish Bombs is without a doubt, one of the most beautiful and complete tracks the Clash would ever record. A recount of the Spanish Civil War in the 30′s, the lyrics are full of affecting imagery. The chord structure is another great one, almost a subtle hint of London Calling. The chorus is clever too, mixing in Spanish, (the multi language trick would be something the Clash would visit again in Should I Stay or Should I Go). The descending guitar line is like something right out of George Harrisons book, emotional and perfect for the track, this is by far among the best songs on the album.
6. Love Is No Big Truth- Kings of Convenience
You’ll be hard pressed to find something as beautifully melodic and simply relaxing outside of this Norwegian duo who combine an Simon/Garfunkel harmony with a modern aesthetic.
7. Feather Bed- Fruit Bats
This minor dominated melody owes a debt to the Bob Dylan songbook but the vocals are far and above the raspy growl that made Dylan famous and the slow burning lead guitar suits the back drop perfectly.
8. Piledriver Waltz- Alex Turner
Take a little melodic influence from The National, a little vocals from Harry Nilsson and a little pinch of John Lennon styled arrangements and you’ll find yourself listening to this little gem from the Arctic Monkeys frontman.
9. Angel- Jack Johnson
He’s never been much for variety, but Jack Johnson has turned simplicity into an art form, his voice always perfect, his lyrics heartfelt, and an arrangement that feels just as at home in your living room as it does in a studio.
10. So Far Around The Bend- The National
Culled from the Dark Was The Night compilation, this number finds The National at their most melodic and downtrodden-ly inspiring.
11. Ten-Twenty-Ten- The Generationals
The guitar riff sounds like an updated version of “Dancing With Myself” and does a great job capturing the energy of this modern band who combine retro influences and modern approaches in their dynamic duo.
12. I Was Wrong (Nico Version)- The Morning Benders
The Morning Benders are probably one of the most promising modern acts out there and this little acoustic number comes from their iTunes Live Session EP and showcases their ability to make someone else’s song completely their own. Chu’s vocals are eerily reminiscent of a young Paul Simon and the simple acoustic guitar arrangement suits the mood perfectly.
13. Portland- Middle Brother
Riffing from the guitar melody line of “And I Love Her” this little ditty from a supergroup of the main singer-songwriters from the upcoming bands of Deer Tick, Dawes, and Delta Spirit is a nice bucolic melody that endears the listener just as The Beatles did before them.
14. Cheers- Blake Mills
Break Mirrors remains above and beyond the best and most understated debut album that came out in 2010 and “Cheers” is a perfect showcase of all Blake Mills talents, arresting vocals, perfect arrangements and a heartbreaking acceptance of the odd twists and turns that life brings.
15. Skinny Genes- Eliza Doolittle
Coming from the same vocal stylings of Amy Winehouse and Lilly Allen before her, Eliza Doolittle actually manages to bring a new dynamic to the fold of modern British songbirds, and is boosted by a great production aesthetic of dusting off old music samples and bringing a whole new life to them.
16. Your Direction- Chief
You won’t find much about this new up and coming band, but their sound is rooted in the classic bands of the 70’s who brought country-styled rock to the mainstream.
17. I Got You (At The End of the Century)- Wilco
Off of one of Wilco’s finest albums Being There, “I Got You” features some great riff work and a great live energy, a great mixtape ender.