isolatedmix 05 - Best of 2009

No guest compiler for isolatedmix 05. Instead, a selection of my favourite tunes from the past year. Thank you to all the artists who feature and here’s to even more great music in 2010.




1. Bibio – Fire Ant
Ambivalence Avenue – one of the albums of the year. Daft-punk’esque Fire Ant is the stand-out track.

2. Mux Mool – Ballad of Gloria Featherbottom
Released as part of the 30th SOS Mix, this track reminds me of Aphex Twin’s Polynomial C.

3. port-royal – Balding Generation (Losing Hair As We Lose Hope)
Possibly my favourite album of the year, I could have picked all the tracks from ‘Dying In Time’. 2009 has seen my hair rapidly recede. Fitting.

4. Fever Ray – Keep The Streets Empty For Me
Fever Ray will appear in a lot of people’s top albums/records of 2009, but few will pick this track. My favourite vocal off the album.

5. Jonsi & Alex – Boy 1904
Hard to single out a track from the Riceboy Sleeps album, but seeing as it’s Christmas, this choir sounding tracks fits perfectly.

6. Lightsway – Risen
Taken from Fugues Unreleased tracks 2009Lightsway lead the way, and the rest of the album isn’t far behind.

7. Klimt – Pozegnanie
Featured a couple of weeks ago, Klimt is my find of the year. Look out for an exclusive isolatedmix from him coming soon.

8. Yagya – Fimm
‘Fimm’s’ beauty is best suited when accompanied by the full album – ‘Rigning’. But, it would have been wrong not to include it.

9. Echaskech – Shatterproof
The one album i was looking to most in 2009 didn’t disappoint. Echaskech‘s ‘Shatterproof’ arrived full of dark beat-heavy electronica. This track, the darkest of the lot.

10. Alla Farmer – Elektrik Sunrize
Featured as part of the latest Kilchurn Sessions, as soon as I heard the piano mid way through this Alla Farmer track, i was hooked.

11. The Field – The More I Do (Thomas Fehlmann mix)
The Field’s latest album ‘Yesterday and Today’ didn’t blow me away as much as the first, but ambient maestro Thomas Fehlmann sprinkles his magic on ‘The More I Do’ to great effect.

12. The Toy Library – Once The Dust Settles
The second track taken from the Fugues Unreleased Tracks 2009 compilation. Told you it was good.

13. Alva Noto – Xerrox Monophaser 2
No mix would be complete without some beautiful beatless ambient.

14. Aphex Twin – Rhubarb (Addled’s edit)
Yes, Rhubarb is featured a lot. But, it’s an amazing track And the Addled edit released by the ISO50 Blog, means i mention it yet again. Vote for your favourite Rhubarb remix here.

15. Tycho – Coastal Brake
From one ISO50 to another. Tycho’s much anticipated release for 2009.

16. Jon Hopkins – The Low Places
Another eagerly anticipated release for 2009. Jon Hopkins mixes infamous delicate pianos and distorted breaks.

17. Jesse Somfay – Algonquin
Taken from ‘A Catch In The Voice’Somfay takes us on one of his epic journey’s.

18. port-royal – I Used To Be Sad.
Should i feel sad for featuring port-royal twice? I used to, then i listened back to the mix and thought this would be a perfect ending.

Album artwork courtesy of Yes Studio.

isolatedmix 04 - Jesse Somfay

Both unique and genre defining, Jesse Somfay’s productions stretch across melodic techno, delicate ambient and epic heavy drone laden masterpieces. His latest album; A Catch In the Voice captures it all and has remained one of my most played since release. And his early releases on Traum, some of my most treasured vinyl. So let’s just say I was a tad happy when Jesse agreed to put together the 4th installment of the isolatedmix series.

My past experience of Somfay mixes have seen him stick to his production style. A live PA at Cadenza Lucida, ‘Our Lonely Pink Hearts Are Full Of Joy’ mix and a set on ‘Ultramagnetic’ Radio show. However, in a similar vain to his latest Hexahedral mixes, isolatedmix 04 sees Jesse orchestrate a journey into music he loves. Old, new, ambient, acoustic, indie, shoegaze, metal, electronica… and with nearly ten hours to get through, I shouldn’t even really be trying to categorise it.

That’s right, nine hours of music. Titled ‘Aesopica’ its a mammoth 101 tracks, in three parts. The first part available below on Soundcloud, and the other two downloadable should you want to experience the epic trilogy.

Part 1.



Part 1 Tracklisting:
0001 Verse En Coma – Untitled
0002 Death Cab For Cutie – Passenger Seat
0003 Blueneck – Lilitu
0004 Nine Inch Nails – Lights In The Sky
0005 Blueneck – Epiphany
0006 Bosse – VI
0007 Grouper – When We Fall
0008 Nine Inch Nails – Ghosts IV – III
0009 Grouper – We’ve All Time To Sleep
0010 Burial – Forgive
0011 Grouper – Heavy Water / I’d Rather Be Sleeping
0012 Tiny Vipers – Campfire Resemblance
0013 Kevin Devine – It’s Only Your Life
0014 Tiny Vipers – On This Side
0015 Radiohead – Thinking About You
0016 Division Day – Enjoy the Silence
0017 Nine Inch Nails – Ghosts I – IV
0018 Division Day – Reservoir
0019 Nine Inch Nails – Ghosts II – VIII
0020 Sneaker Pimps – Walking Zero
0021 Nine Inch Nails – The Fragile
0022 Nine Inch Nails – Ghosts IV – I
0023 Pyramids – Sleds
0024 Nine Inch Nails – A Warm Place
0025 Boris & Sunn O))) – Fried Eagle Mind
0026 Jodis – Ascent
0027 Pyramids With Nadja – Into The Silent Waves
0028 Nadja – I Make From Your Eyes The Sun
0029 The Angelic Process – Million Year Summer
0030 Pyramids With Nadja – An Angel Was Heard To Cry Over The City Of Rome
0031 The Angelic Process – Mouvement – The Rest Of The World Is Noise
0032 Boris – Luna
0033 Envy – A Road Of Winds The Water Builds
0034 Fall Of Efrafa – Republic Of Heaven

Part 2. Download

0035 Boris – Akirame Flower
0036 Jesu – Opiate Sun
0037 Jesu – Losing Streak
0038 The Black Heart Rebellion – Leaving The Capitals
0039 Envy – Life Caught In The Rain
0040 Latitudes – Antechamber
0041 Wolves In The Throne Room – A Looming Resonance
0042 Boris – 8
0043 Envy – Isolation Of A Light Source
0044 Boris – Farewell
0045 Her Name Is Calla – Nylon
0046 Laudanum – Invoke
0047 Kylesa – Unknown Awareness
0048 Floor – Scimitar
0049 Torche – Healer
0050 Magoo – Acid Goldbar
0051 Jucifer – Hennin Hardine
0052 Torche – Across The Shields
0053 Jucifer – Surface Tension
0054 True Widow – AKA
0055 Jucifer – Little Fever
0056 Converge – Grim Heart / Black Rose
0057 Deftones – Pink Maggit
0058 Tragedy – Night Falls
0059 Deftones – Be Quiet And Drive (Far Away)
0060 Dead Swans – When You Sleep
0061 Deftones – Digital Bath
0062 Converge – Jane Doe
0063 Thursday – Unintended Long Term Effects
0064 Fear Before – Get Your Life Together
0065 Thursday – An Absurd And Unrealistic Dream Of Peace
0066 Verse En Coma – Tiny Speakers
0067 Sights & Sounds – Pedal Against The Wind
0068 Fear Before – Fear Before Doesn’t Listen To People Who Don’t Like Them
0069 Sights & Sounds – Neighbours
0070 Fear Before – My (Fucking) Deer Hunter
0071 The Dillinger Escape Plan – Unretrofied
0072 Nine Inch Nails – The Great Destroyer
0073 Primal Scream – Deep Hit Of Morning Sun
0074 Converge – Disintegration

Part 3. Download.

0075 Sights & Sounds – Night Train
0076 Ruiner – Convenient Gods
0077 Killing The Dream – Fractures
0078 Have Heart – No Roses, No Skies
0079 Tragedy – Recurring Nightmare
0080 Tragedy – Deaf and Disbelieving
0081 Harum Scarum – Systematic Death
0082 Invasion – Evil Forest
0083 A Place To Bury Strangers – It Is Nothing
0084 Health – Eat Flesh
0085 Legion Of Two – Palace (Dub)
0086 Health – In Violet
0087 The Horrors – Sea Within A Sea
0088 The XX – Islands
0089 Silversun Pickups – Growing Old Is Getting Old
0090 A Place To Bury Strangers – Keep Slipping Away
0091 Catherine Wheel – Crank
0092 Division Day – Hurricane
0093 Logh – The Smoke Will Lead You Home
0094 True Widow – Duelist
0095 Silversun Pickups – There’s No Secrets This Year
0096 Dominic – End of Man
0097 Silversun Pickups – Sort Of
0098 Samara Lubelski – Field the Mine
0099 Ulrich Schnauss – Stars
0100 Nine Inch Nails – Hurt
0101 Nine Inch Nails – The Great Below

isolatedmix 03 - Milieu: One Last Push On The Swing

If you haven’t managed to stumble across Milieu’s refined releases such as, ‘Bent Appletrees’, or ‘Songs we found in the sand’ then you may want to look them up. But before that, why not get a unique insight from the man behind the music…

Titled ‘One Last Push on the Swing’, Milieu has recalled his musical influences, and revisited some personal moments in time to construct an ambient reflection for isolatedmix 03.

And as expected, Milieu’s influences are a tad pleasing on the ear. Tracks range from early 1993 Rephlex / Aphex Twin releases via his alter ego ‘Bradley Strider’, to 2009 releases under one of my favourite labels, ‘Mule Musiq’. Milieu must have also kept his ear close to the notorious German output City Centre Offices, with tracks from Arovane and Bitstream (CCO being the launch pad for Ulrich Schnauss’ ‘Far Away trains Passing by’ and ‘A Strangely Isolated Place’).

Take a read of Milieu’s accompanying track notes and each moment comes alive, that little bit more…

“Putting mixes together has always been one of my favorite things, going all the way back to high school. I think a mix can say a lot for the person making it, and so with this mix I opted to go down ‘memory lane’ a little and choose tracks that took me back to a specific time and place in my life.”



1. Ten And Tracer - Ontogeny Recapitulates Phylogeny [Rope Swing Cities, 2006]
One of Jon’s best melodies ever. Makes me think about walking around in the sunshine working on projects for art class back in 2006.

2. Lunar Testing Lab – Mock-Orange [I, Absentee, 2008]
My favorite track on LTL’s record from last year. Brings to mind memories of riding the public transit around after I dropped out of high school.

3. Bitstream – Crab Nebula [City Centre Offices, 2002]
An absolutely stunning track, all around. This song is just so feel-good, it makes you think that this is what good electronic music is really supposed to sound like.

4. Bradley Strider - Bradley’s Robot A2 [Rephlex, 1993]
Late nights driving home from my crappy job at a lazer tag place when I was 19. Being slightly stoned and behind the wheel when the highway is empty for forty minutes used to be magical in some weird way.

5. DJ Sprinkles – Ball’r/Madonna Free Zone [Mule Musiq, 2009]
Another beautiful example of how bittersweet and amniotic electronic stuff can be sometimes. There’s something very sad and full of longing in this track.

6. Bonobo – The Plug [Tru Thoughts, 2000]
This one takes me back to when I first moved in with Sophia by the beach, back in 2003. Lots of late nights doing overtime in my then-office job listening to this record.

7. Kiln – Kekker [Thalassa, 1998]
Kiln are simply one of the most amazing bands ever, and a real pleasure to know. This track really displays the amount of control they have over their sound, somehow making a very live band sound absolutely alien at the
same time.

8. Manual – Miraparque [Awkward Silence, 2008]
Now for this track and the next three we’re getting into ‘tropical mode’. I’ve always been totally obsessed with tropical sounds, images, climes, the whole deal, and Manual nails that vibe perfectly. Most likely because I grew up around the beach, this stuff always hits a nerve with me.

9. The Gentle People - Journey (Aphex Twin Care Mix) [Rephlex, 1995]
This track is total perfection. It could go on forever. It also brings to mind very specific uh…romantic memories. Yeah. Mindblowing.

10. Quantic – The 5th Exotic [Tru Thoughts, 2000]
Similar to the previous track, this is another one that still sounds very sexy and night-time to me. The kind of track you hear and want to bliss out to with someone you love.

11. Signaldrift – Welcome Ceylon [Wobblyhead, 2003]
This is one of those records that is just too perfect to pick a single song from. I went with this one because it was one of the first Signaldrift songs I ever heard and it’s still one of the best. The way this man has with melodies is just beyond me.

12. Cylob - Foid [Rephlex, 1996]
Going way back to when I was living in the deep country with my dad after high school. This was a time of self-discovery for me, and all I did was work, make music, and find new music to immerse myself in. Cylobian Sunset is one of those records that changed my life, and this song just breaks my heart every time. I can almost smell the old paperbacks and the weed on my clothes.

13. Arovane – Deauville [City Centre Offices, 2000]
I was suggested Tides by a German friend in 2003 when I first met Sophia, and the album still blows me away. No other song conjures the feeling of being stranded on a desert island quite like this one does. Pure distant sadness.

14. Loess – Viscer [Toytronic, 2003]
I also got into Loess when I first met Sophia, and I’d take this EP around with us when we’d be out driving around Surfside Beach at night. Perfect music for a cool contemplative drive around in the dark, and a wonderful song to close the mix with.

isolatedmix 02 - ASIP

An hour of favourites and classics.


1. Susumu Yokota – Sea Blue
I love the strings on this track and thought it would make a perfect start.

2. Sigur Ros - Takk
Reminds me of Benicassim 08. The sun was setting and a dark cloud was circling the mountains in the background as Sigur Ros charmed the crowd.

3. The KLF – Madruga Eterna
Taken from the ‘Chillout’ album which is by far one of the best ambient records known to man. This track features an awesome guitar lick straight out of mid-west USA which would be out of place on any other record.

4. Lightsway – A Sky Full Of Clouds
AKA Winterlight AKA Tim Ingham, this track is a slow burning atmospheric monster. Go get the album ‘Summer Interlude’.

5. Bibio – It Was Willow
A short masterpiece which encapsulates Bibio at his finest.

6. William Orbit – You Know Too Much About Flying Saucers
William Orbit makes outstanding music. Taken from ‘Hello Waveforms’, this is another track with delicate guitar melodies where the sounds seem to fit the title perfectly.

7. The Album Leaf – Over The Pond
Weird child noises and a lovely piano combine to form a masterpiece.

8. Winterlight – Hush Now
As if the Lightsway track wasn’t enough, how about some more.

9. Little Dragon – Twice
Nine tracks in and it’s time to feature the first full on vocal track. And a beautiful vocal at that. The best off the album and a fine video to match.

10. Leandro Fresco – Buenos Amigos
The epitome of ambient. Comatising (is that a word?!). If you like this then check out Kompakt’s annual Pop Ambient series.

11. Jon Hopkins – Cold Out There
A composer, pianist and a self-taught studio wizard. If you needed proof, this is it.

12. Delerium – Sensorium
Sampled on one of my favourite Drum & Bass tracks ‘Origin Unknown – Valley Of The Shadows‘, this is the intro to what is a 9 minute monster from Delerium.

13. Burial – UK
This is what makes Burial great. A track which easily crosses over into ambient when put in the right context.

14. Boards of Canada – Blockbusters
I remember hearing this sample for the first time and thinking ‘what the hell’? For some reason its a bit freaky.

15. Ulrich Schnauss – Molfsee
Ulrich goes Happy Cycling with Boards of Canada.

16. Ulf Lohmann – Burning Bright
Loops. Loops. Never knew it could work this well.

17. Aphex Twin – Blue Calx
Finish on a high. Or in this case, the best low there is.

Image from Leonid Tishkov