10 Mixes From 2013 That Made My Jaw Drop

Posted by on December 23, 2013

One cool thing that happened to me this year was that I got hired on to write for FNT. I have followed this website for years and it has led me to mountains of great music. I’m glad that I now have the opportunity to share music with the website. This year I became a bigger fan of mixes; I love to see what artists can do when given an extended period of time within which they can be creative. Below is the list of 10 mixes that I liked the most from this past year, with some other mixes mentioned at the end that didn’t make this list based on who knows what. The list is more or less ranked in order, with mix #1 definitely being my favourite. If you don’t want to listen to all of the mixes, and don’t care what I have to say about them, then skip ahead and at least listen to the number 1 mix – Space Jams by The M Machine (hence the above, cool picture of those guys). Thanks for supporting the website by visiting it, thanks for supporting artists and their music, and thanks for reading our posts.

10. Disclosure – The Essential Mix

Starting off the list are this year’s big to-do; the duo that everybody loves to love, Disclosure. These two put UK garage on their backs and sprinted to the forefront of dance music within such a short time that they must have broken records. They just know how to make music that everyone can get down with. The first 10 minutes of the mix are a tribute to legendary hip hop music producer J Dilla. Then it’s garage, house and that jazz all the way. It is well done and sure to get you moving.


9. Zeds Dead – The Essential Mix

This is a perfect representation of Zeds Dead’s sound. This mix is 2 hours long, and if you like Zeds Dead, you’ll love it from cover to cover. If you’re on the fence about – or unfamiliar with – their sound, turn this on and I guarantee that the first 5 minutes of music will make you a believer. This mix covers all aspects of the Toronto-born pair’s sound, from their chill jams to their electro-bangers, and all the bass heavy goodness in between. They’ve also added a lot of their musical influences which wiggle into the mix and create some groovy diversity.


8. Kill The Noise x Brillz – Mystical Wonder Mix

Ok so technically this could count as two mixes.. but ask me if I care. Seriously, comment on this post and ask me – I might be totally broken up about it for all you know. Thankfully there isn’t anything better to help you forget your troubles/qualms/worries than throwing this on LOUD. TRAP! ELECTRO-HOUSE! BROSTEP! OHH MYY! And yes, I did go and see these two gentlemen live in Toronto because of this mix. I am a huge fan of these two guys as producers and as performers, and after releasing this mix they both had solid years. Ps. I don’t think I’ll ever get sick of Internet Friends.


7. MiMoSA – Event Horizon DJ Mix

MiMoSA has really refined his sound into this wicked rap/party trap combination that’s not afraid to get it’s hands dirty in some dubstep. The intro by Jimmy Smith (that actually comes from that Drake song) always gets me with its smoothness and perfection as an introduction. The mix starts out gentle and gradually garners energy and roughness until it explodes into its true form around the 6 minute mark. Tons of fun.


6. Fehrplay – Mix for the DJ Mag Canada Podcast

Once you get past the God-awful intro sound bite by DJ Mag Canada (How about putting 2 hours and $50 into creating a shoutout that doesn’t embarrass me as a Canadian), you’re rewarded with the syrupy-sweet goodness of Fehrplay’s dark side. Fehrplay mixes some deep house, progressive house, tech house and other dance music treats with skill in this hour-long stint.


5. French Kiwi Juice – Eton Messy Music Presents.. FKJ

Whatchu know about feel-good vibes? French Kiwi Juice has a signature sound that is the sonic embodiment of sunshine, lollipops, rainbows and blunts. He makes soulful music that is as entertaining as it is relaxing, and always smooth as, say, “butter meltin’ on a big ol’ pile of flapjacks”. He adds new age sound to an old style, and in this mix he even brings some of the old style to light. He closes the mix with an unadulterated Aretha Franklin jam, like a boss.


4. Bassnectar – Dreamtempo 

Bassnectar rereleased his mix tape from 1999, and now I get to include it in this list based on that technicality! The name of this mix does a great job of describing what to expect when you listen to it. It is a chill mix that gets heavy at times, bringing you the dreamiest of trip-hop, ambience, and acid jazz. This is definitely not the kind of music that Bassnectar is most commonly known for, especially nowadays, but it is nonetheless amazing. Effects-heavy, and hypnotic, this mix is a superb throwback; get lost in it.


3. Author – Forward Forever Mix

Author is the collaboration project of Jack Sparrow and Ruckspin. I realized while preparing to write this post, that this mix is actually an awesome follow-up listen to Dreamtempo. It isn’t so much similar to Dreamtempo as it is, in my opinion, an excellent compliment to it. It is heavy with dubstep, bass music, some dark house stuff and rounded out with some great vocals, lyrics, and spoken word. It is heavy without being very aggressive.


2. Phonat – Nest HQ Minimix

Phonat should endorse a line of blenders because he mixes so well. This half hour of greatness is harmonically mixed with song and tempo transitions that are pretty amazing. Many of the songs are layered overtop of each other to create some really great sounding segments. He has chosen songs that mesh completely with his style of music. It gets down deep and it gets high and happy, bringing you an experience that is light on lyrics but heavy on vibes and emotion.


1. The M Machine – Space Jams (Owsla After Dark Pt.III)

This is probably my favourite hour of sound ever. The Great Dictator speech by Charlie Chaplin has always hit a soft spot in me. I was surprised and intrigued when I heard the words of the speech opening this mix, and I was thrilled that excerpts of the speech turned out to be a mainstay in the mix. Not only does the speech come up throughout the mix, but it is integrated so perfectly that it almost feels like the mix is built around the speech. The songs that proceed each speech segment seem to match perfectly with the feeling that the speech had been illustrating – it’s a seamless connection of emotive material. The speech and the music both illustrate feelings of hope, despair, joy and sorrow. It’s a crazy ride, and I really feel as though it showcases the potential that mixes, music and art in general have. To take awesome songs and additional extra-musical content, blend it together into a flowing, breathtaking masterpiece that balances the extremes of energy, sound and emotion, is truly an amazing feat. It is by no means a revolutionary idea, but I would love to see more projects like this from contemporary artists, whether it be in the form of a mix, a live show, or a video. This ambitious mix is my favourite musical project from this year.


Here are some mixes that made my jaw not necessarily drop, but more or less dip a bit. I mean, my mouth was definitely open a little, but not agape or anything. Anyway..


Astronomar, Bot & Neoteric – Mix for THUMP’s “Mixed By” series. The boys put together a tight mix of what their label has to offer.

Eric Prydz’s Essential Mixes. Because it’s Eric Prydz, and because he did two this year, and because he made the Essential Mix of the Year.

The Mat Zo Mix series has been spot on.

CRNKN, and Nadastrom, each put cool mixes out with NEST HQ.

gLAdiator put out cool mixes for THUMP and Nest HQ.

The Skrillex Essential Mix was interesting.

No one can deny DJ Shadow’s skills on deck, and I really really wanted to love his mix for Diplo & Friends. But I didn’t.

I know I didn’t touch on live sets or shows, figured those would need a post of their own.


Comment if you’ve got an opinion.


Happy New Year – Mr. J. Tiffy

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