Posted by
• 12.17.10 02:05 pm

There are a lot of rules to making the perfect mix. They come from years of trial and error and blood and sweat and crying and shit.

There are a lot of rules to making the perfect mix. They come from years of trial and error and blood and sweat and crying and shit. When I first started making these in 1982 as a twelve-year-old, me and my friends would have to hold a cheap tape recorder up to the radio and record every song that came out. If it sucked, we’d hit stop, rewind and wait for the next one to come out.

Then, tape-to-tape decks arrived and we thought the future could hold no more joy. This is back when a mixtape was made of actual tape and despite what the Salad Days glorifists tell you, it still sucked. There’d always be that one song that didn’t belong and you’d either have to endure it or rerecord the whole thing again from scratch. Today taking a song out of a mix is just a gentle touch of the delete button (you spoiled fuckers).

Anyway, here’s the rules to making the perfect mix and I used the best songs from the past 365 days.

Making a mix is like seducing a lady. You can’t just cram it in there. You need to start by waiting for her to finish reading her gossip blogs, then suggest a back rub, then kiss her on the face, then some nudity… banging is like the 32nd step.
Today’s mix starts out with happy choruses and a xylophone with friends everywhere. Nobody could object to that and if they do, get out of the house now. You are in bed with a sociopath.

Ideally, songs are placed in clusters of three. I need to get out of the chick section here and get things cooking so I matched DOM’s heavy drums with Lykke Li’s and stuck it to dudes singing about chicks. Which brings us to our next rule.

Back in the shitty days, DJ’s would be expected to beat mix the aforementioned drum similarities using turntables. Nobody noticed so now iTunes is used and turntables are in the dinosaur bin. Fine with me.

You want to get some hardcore in there like Cerebral Ballzy but it’s like robbing a bank. You have to get in smooth and escape with your life. I eased us in with fun punky shit like Japanther and Harlem but how to get out?

To go from hardcore to rap is like chugging orange juice after you brush your teeth, it hurts and it’s gross. Solutions to the problem include: Some weird, spoken word sample, a crazy instrumental, or a new kind of music like Salem which combines everything in the world at once.

Okay this is weird. My last cluster went from Salem and then did two rap songs. Then three more? Look asshole, I chose the weirdest rap songs I had and used them to segue into an actual rap cluster which started with the strangest rap song of THAT cluster. I know. What a mindfuck right? The beginning of the rap set is so gentle, it’s impossible to determine. The important thing is we danced with the devil in the pale moonlight and lived! Now we can enjoy some mainstream chart toppers and recover from the roller coaster that has been the past 13 songs.

Ramping it up to punk and even adding some rap is plenty fun but why not just detonate the dynamite? BBU’s chorus of “Chi-Town throw it up / Bin Laden blow it up” laughs at you for trusting us and fucking throws you into the center of an erupting volcano. Then, like a torture victim who is revived with smelling salts, you get pounded with two more thousand-ton Godzillas. I even blew my own mind by leaving the three song cluster rule and throwing a Maximum Balloon in there for no reason! Can you dig it?

Intercourse is ultimately about benevolence and although intense peaks are reached and some potentially regrettable quotes are uttered during the course of the act, you can’t leave your lover lying on the side of the bed in a pile of cum.
Returning from Sleigh Bells and the previous dance hits ain’t easy but it has to be done. That’s why we use a gruff blues song to continue the guitars and then stroke her hair with a kind dose of Here We Go Magic.

It’s over. There’s been 18 22 [thanks, Math] songs made up of seven three-song clusters (with one exception) and it’s important to ease the victim slowly into a blissful sleep.
Australia’s own Tame Impala have been voted, “Most Likely to Make Us Look Back on This Whole Experience as Worth it” and so, they win the award.
They’d like to thank me and you for making this possible. Good night.



The Best Songs of 2010
Cults “Go Outside”
Tennis “Marathon”
DOM “Bonicha”

Lykke Li “Get Some”
LCD Soundsystem “Drunk Girls”
Plus Perfect “House on Fire”

Harlem “Someday Soon”
Japanther “No one’s Listenin”
Cerebral Ballzy “Insufficient Fare”

Salem “Sick”
Best Coast, Rostam & Kid Cudi – “All Summer”
Clockwork “Office Muzik”

J. Cole “Blow Up”
Young Money “Roger That”
Kanye West “Power”

BBU “BB Who”
South Rakkas Crew feat MC Gi & Mr Dockery “Hands Up Brazil (Double Up Riddim)”
Magic Balloon “Groove Me”
Sleigh Bells “Tell Em”

Black Keys “Next Girl”
Here We Go Magic “Collector”
Tame Impala “Solitude is Bliss”


Originally published on

  1. LURKDAT says:

    Thank you. “Ease into it” Ease it out b4 u eat it out!

  2. MillsBills says:

    That mirror makes that picture nearly impossible to understand.

  3. Anonymous says:

    Amen to the mirror observation.

  4. Math says:

    7×3 = 18

  5. count badly says:

    can you instruct us how to take a dump and wack off next (again)
    good mix tho it’s missing some ceo

  6. gabelord says:

    a mix tape article? in 2010? really?

  7. e-dit says:

    dammit gavin.if your ass isn’t on the market, please disappear!!!

  8. BongBong says:

    I can trick my eyes into believing that you are being impaled by a metal object that has been dispatched by the birds supernatural defense system. The key to doing it is stare at the bottom part where it looks like it going into your chin then slowly pan across to the birds beak.

  9. iwontslowdown says:

    cults are good

    sum of these other honkies, not so much

  10. AQDNK says:

    damn this sucks

  11. Freddie says:

    Do you drink these at your white supremacist meetings?

  12. Seth Putnam says:

    Aren’t you supposed to be cooler than me, Gavin? Why do I know all this shit already? I guess because you’re old it’s cooler that you’re not listening to Michael Buble or something. Also, this mix would be better if you’d used Salem’s remix of Gucci Mane’s “Round One”. That’d really tie the whole thing together.

  13. dickie pea says:

    boring ass playlist

  14. bckpck T says:

    rap selections are weak. don’t know the rest. cracker ass crackers.

  15. BeerInAWineGlass says:

    Hey Gavin, I’ve got a bunch of Street Carnage stickers on my wall back in Ottawa, that I picked up from friends at konkrete jungle at lotus lounge. I’ve only known about you a couple years but I really enjoy your honest writing, and videos. Prose before hoes. Would it be possible for you to send me a mixtape where I currently live in Switzerland? If so I can email you my addy. It would make my fuckin christmas, even tho I’m way far away FROM HOME.
    Thanks brother.

  16. bckpck T enjoys the taste of semen says:

    @bckpck T – your comments are fucking weak.

  17. digit says:

    mixtape is real good.

  18. ChimChim says:

    If I were on DMT and residing within the universe of Yellow Submarine that picture would make perfect sense.

  19. CREAM says:

    Sad old-guy-trying-to-stay-relevant music taste.

  20. Atarilogic says:

    These comments are all “stepped on.” I love new music/pitchfork fags for their untamed bullshit commentary. How original are you when you find your music at other peoples’ blogs for a living? By the way, how’s your band coming along?

  21. Methusala's Grandpappy says:

    I am so old. My nephew went down with the Lusitania. My nanny was born a slave. The ‘internet’ was smoke signals.

    I haven’t hear the whole mixtape yet, but to my ear the beginning stuff sounds like lo-fi New Wave (early 1980s British-y). Is that what you white college kids are into now, is recycling britpop sounds using woolsock-muffled microphones? I hated that faggy stuff even back when it was crisply recorded.

  22. Dudebrah says:

    Anyone know where I can get some hash?

  23. Anonymous says:

    What about Florence and the Machine? None on this mixtape.

  24. qq says:

    Nice one.

    Also whomever said “prose before hoes” up there if they invented it that is genius and my new mantra

  25. no.thanks. says:

    this was really good. i feel like an asshole for being late to Harlem.

  26. yee says:

    Look at the bird. He goes like “Fuck…..”

  27. flen says:

    I thought you were old? this isn’t old guy music…

  28. thoreauly77 says:

    rip off high fidelity a bit more why don’t ya?

    i mean, damn, i know your kiddos over here are mostly in their early 20’s, but you have got to give some respect your your source material/inspiration.

  29. Quan says:

    It’s like there’s a street boner in my ear and in my mouth. Thanks.

  30. uber.hip.ster says:

    OK, to this inept effort you’ve arrogated the laughable claim that it’s the “best songs of 2010”. Yet there’s not even one Garrison Keillor duet. FAIL!

  31. Anonymous says:

    A mixtape without Katy Perry or Taylor Swift is a waste of everybodys time.

  32. harpua says:

    Gavin, please make a mix for being stoned.

  33. de-balled says:

    brb, have to go listen to some Black Sabbath and reclaim my manhood.

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