Recently I was asked to participate in a year-end list called “10×15” where designers re-imagine the album covers from their top 10 records of the year. I’ve felt incredibly lucky to be a part of the 10×15 project this year. When The Point asked for my year-end list, I thought a perfect recap would be to catalog my contributions to 10×15 here on their blog.
Be sure to check out all the designers involved in “10×15” at 10×2015.com!
Oneohtrix Point Never – Garden of Delete
An abrasive collage of seemingly unfinished avant EDM jammers. A 45-minute retreat for both the halcyon and the insane.
Night Beds – Ivywild
Singer-songwriter/alt-country is so rarely in my year-end list. Unless of course the singer-songwriter takes a huge risk, shifts gears, writes an electronic/r&b record in collaboration with his brother and nearly 20 other producers/musicians and hits the whole damn thing outta the park. Coincidentally, I was lucky enough to design the retail packaging for this thing.
Airbird & Napolian – Mr. Foolish
Debut collaborative full-length from Los Angeles producer, Napolian Evans, and easily one of my most admired living electronic music producers—Brooklyn’s, Joel Ford. To boot, “In The Zone,” is my favorite track of 2015.
Tame Impala – Currents
Gorgeously quirky pop songs. Previously disguised as psychedelic rock ‘n’ roll. Currently marinating in nostalgic electronics. Check please.
Beat Connection – Product 3
Sleek electropop who’s not afraid to deconstruct, experiment and risk accessibility for incredibly thoughtful composition. The curation of sounds—the whirlwind of production that can make or break an electronic record—feels virtually flawless on Product 3.
Cities Aviv – Your Discretion Is Trust
Hip-hop as seen through some sort of mangled lens that harkens to both industrial and rhythm & blues records of the early 90s. And also doesn’t.
Jamie xx – In Colour
I’ve listened to this record 247 times since May 29, 2015 and the plays do not appear to be slowing down just yet. Unfortunately for “In Colour,” three pretty remarkable records stole my heart this Summer and left this at #4. But that doesn’t tell you what this sounds like. It’s just more electronic music on my top ten. Somebody with the Wikipedia username, “AssortedLiquorice,” calls it “future garage.”
Blanck Mass – Dumb Flesh
Eight tracks encompassing the “sweeping emotional and physical power of sound.”
CFCF – The Colours of Life
CFCF (aka Mike Silver) wrote a single song building on themes from Phil Collins’ “Hand in Hand” and milestones from the 70’s new age label, Windham Hill Records. It’s a smooth, yet wildly rhythmic, instrumental pop adventure. A single 40-min song broken into 12 tracks. Reminiscent of moments in Steve Reich’s catalog or Edgar Froese/Tangerine Dream’s “Virgin Era.” Here’s the first 3:53.
Health – Death Magic
Drenched in darkness. Seeping beauty. Stomping out the light with such thunder while singing to you with tears in its eyes. There are tracks on Death Magic that just annihilate me. And yet tracks like “Life” or “L.A. Looks” that peel off like unabashed pop singles. That marvelous moment in life when you come across something that feels like it was made just for you. Death Magic was this for me in 2015.
You can listen to both Metavari’s electronic debut (Moonless) and their 7-inch single (Oh Diane) from this year on metavari.com.