On Repeat: Pillowtalk - Je Ne Sais Quoi

Theres been some great music released in 2014 but I'd been waiting for the first album to make me say "wow".  It's here and it is Je Ne Sais Quoi by Pillowtalk.

This is one of those albums by a group that definitely electronic genre, but is right on the edge of that and something more natural.  In the past I've talked about DJ's and producers branching out a bit more.  Instead of just using decks and samplers they are throwing more instruments in the mix.  It's been great to watch things change and for the better.  

Je Ne Sais Quoi dips in and out of jazz, house, 80's, a touch of alternative, and more.  It is so completely chill and I just can't stop listening.  Below are some of my favorite tracks, although it was hard to pick them because just about every track on the album is great.  

Listen & Purchase

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Spotify

Massive Attack - Mezzanine

Massive Attack's Mezzanine (1998) is certainly one of my all time favorites when it comes to downtempo music.  Right up there with the super chill stylings of Bonobo.  I can put  this album on and listen to it all the way through at just about any time.  Tunes from this album have been featured in several movies.  And if you've seen the TV show House you've heard the track Teardrop, which is the shows' theme song.  If you don't have this album, I'd say it is a good addition to anyone's collection. It was future music when it came out and it is still so current today.  Here's one of my favorite tracks:

Massive Attack is however, one of the few bands I can't recommend to see live.  While I've only seen them once, they were absolutely atrocious.  Their sound doesn't seem meant for a live shows but that won't stop me from listening to Mezzanine for years to come and I still think it should be part of your collection.

Buy Mezzanine:

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Bonobo - The North Borders

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Bonobo has without a doubt been my favorite downtempo/trip hop artist for the past few years.  He has not had an album release that I did not like and his recently released The North Borders is no exception.  

I'm not sure why, but I've always very deeply connected with Bonobo's music.  It is something I can listen to at almost any time but I usually go to it when I need to relax and chill out a bit.  Other people must really enjoy his stuff too because I hear him everywhere.  I hear snippets of his tracks on NPR, at conferences, on TV ads, at yoga class, and much more.  

The North Borders is classic Bonobo; exotic strings and synths that give the feeling of being in some far away land.  Add some soothing bass, cleverly arranged drums, and some tight vocal samples on a few tracks and you have a recipe for yet another great album from a guy who's been rocking this way since 1999.  

Info on his upcoming US tour has been out for a while and I highly recommend you hit up a show if you can.  While he is known for his DJ sets, I really got into him after seeing his act with a live band.  In my opinion it is magical to see these tunes played out by a full band which he hasn't done in over a year.  I'm pumped, and Bonobo himself is excited for it too.  

Here are a few of my favorite tracks from The North Borders:

Antenna  //  Don't Wait  //  Sapphire  

As you might have guessed, I highly recommend this album.  Currently, it stands as my best of 2013.  

Buy The North Borders:

Amazon  //  iTunes

Quantic & His Combo Barbaro - Un Canto A Mi Tierra

When it' snowy and cold outside, a track like this always helps me to warm up. Guess it's a mental thing.

Quantic has a lot of great stuff.  Very chill music.  I recommend the best of album if you want to give a listen even though all the albums are pretty damn good.

Buy on Amazon  //  Buy on iTune