Love Bumps


Skkra recommends… Love Bumps by Joomanji!

Well, this is it.  2/28.  The final day of the month, and the last music recommendation for a while.  I’m going to wrap things up with Love Bumps by Joomanji, which is a low-key musical collective.  Their music tends to consist of a single theme or two with tons of layered melodies that they phase in and out over time.  It allows them to take a single idea and express it in tons of different ways just by, for example, choosing to drop out the drums, or guitar, or bass for a few bars.  Each part of the composition highlights different aspects and layers, and makes each section feel like its own little song.

Every line in this song is so important to the overall sound, with the guitar, bass, and piano lines being particular lovely and memorable.  I was actually first turned onto this group because of a skate video that showed people doing flat-ground tricks in super slow motion via a 1000 fps camera.  It was hypnotic to see the intricate footwork performed so slowly, because the stuff happens so fast in real time that you can barely appreciate it.

Chocolate Ripples


Skkra recommmends… Chocolate Ripples by Otograph!

Otograph is a japanese musical duo comprised of Takashi Iura and Sachiyo Oshima.  The do some dance music, but also do a lot of work within the realm of video games, which is where I first found them.

I think this is one of the prettiest and most chill songs I’ve ever heard.  It also evokes some strange emotion in me… a mix of sadness and extremely happiness at the same time, almost like experiencing some bittersweet memory.  It makes me feel a longing for a time I can’t even accurately articulate or visualize, but one that I miss terribly, despite being unable to identify it.

All of the electronic sounds chosen for this tune are near perfect – particularly the bell sound that serves as the lead – but the deep and booming bass is absolutely sick and makes the song for me.

The Sea


Skkra recommends… The Sea by Morcheeba!

This must be one of my favorite chill songs of all time.  It’s absolutely beautiful.  It’s in the same downbeat style that the Sneaker Pimps used to rise to fame in the 1990s, though Morcheeba never reached that same level of popularity.

The song is about the ocean, which is one of the most calming places on earth for me, so I love the lyrics for that alone.  That said, the vocals are lush and full of character.  The singer has done other solo work, and you can easily look her up, if anyone is interested.

My other favorite part about this song – well, it’s all fairly perfect, from the strings, to the guitar, to the poignant little bell synth sounds that pepper the tune – is the bassline.  It’s deep but not intrusive, and the intro and outro both feature the same riff on bass, which consists of a single deep note and a side up an octave to hit a higher harmony note.  Gorgeous.

Good Time


Skkra recommends… Good Time by Owl City!

I kind of hate myself for liking this stupid song so much, but… I do.  So what can I say.  I’m recommending it.

Carly Rae Jepsen – one of the lower tier females of the pop diva scene – guests on it, and I will say that she has some of the most alluring and sultry vocals I’ve heard in a long time.  Sometimes about the way she pronounces her words and delivers her vocals is insanely sexy and playful.

The best part about this song is most easily heard right in the intro – Adam Young (who IS Owl City) breaks up the main synth that underscores the entire song into two completely different and non-matching lines, piped through the left and right channels.  If you start the song listening with only one headphone in, you’ll hear a pattern with different notes emphasized than the other.  Only when you put both headphones in do you hear the riff the way you’re used to hearing it.  None of the karaoke covers or instrumentals versions of the song I can find anywhere both to replicate that.  It’s actually my favorite part of the song.

This song also holds a strangely special place in my brain because of a random person I knew when this song first came out and with whom I now unhelpably associate it.  They’re gone from life now, and they’ll never know it, but one stupid line in this stupid song made it theirs.

Lead Breakfast


Skkra recommends… Lead Breakfast by Pogo!

Pogo is a pretty spectacular artist.  He cuts up movies on youtube and uses nothing but the sounds he cuts from the film to create songs.  Yes, things are absolutely pitched as necessary, and tiny slices are stretched and altered as necessary to create things like bass sounds, but it’s all stuff that was literally cut from the movie.  The end result is insanely creative and generally remarkable.  How he’s able to hear these things in his head is honestly beyond me, and I consider myself a pretty musical person.

While there are several great tunes out there – particularly his Fresh Prince, Alice in Wonderland, and Mary Poppins mixes – Lead Breakfast, a Pulp Fiction remix, is my personal favorite.  It’s really hard to say anything about the song.  He even makes music videos to go along with the songs, and it must take FOREVER to synchronize everything.