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:

Amazon  //  iTunes

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

New Bonobo Album April 1

Bonobo has been one of my favorite downtempo/trip hop artists for the last 10 years.   He has a bunch of albums out, none of which I don't like.  So at this point in early 2013 this is my most anticipated album of the year.  New single and video was released today.  The video is freaking awesome.  Check it out.

Some of my other favorite Bonobo tracks:

Between the Lines  //  Sugar Rhyme  //  Eyesdown ft. Andreya Triana