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Friday, November 16th, 2012 | Author: Casey Criswell

As a former musician, long time music geek and all around good listener…I’ve long been a fan of the mix tape. Since I started running this year, I find myself with long stretches of time with nothing but spotify and a pair of earbuds to occupy my brain space, so I started making play lists once again. Those playlists were random and wandering however, lacking focus and theme! Until a week or two back until my friend Mark sparked my imagination with his Sad Bastard Music themed mix, which in turn inspired my own Sad Bastard Music 2: A Bloo Hoo Hoo.

Turns out, I missed the art of making a good mix tape!

Turns out too, said mix tapes make for great listening when I’m out running! Not to mention…they make me want to run even more to hear the whole thing.

So below, you can check out my latest mix tape, “Songs of Love, Loss and Flannel”. It’s a mix of folky, alt-country type mellow tunes as that’s what I’ve been into here as of late. If you’re familar with that style of music, you’ll recognize a few names such as Glen Campbell and The Head and the Heart as well as a bunch of lesser known bands that I’ve been discovering and falling in love with like Dr. Dog, The Lumineers and Josh Ritter. All in all, it’s a pretty mellow mix and makes for good back ground noise when you’re cruising down the side of a country road in this blustery fall weather!

Enjoy! I’m having a lot of fun with this, so stay tuned for some more here in the near future! For that matter, if this gets your own gears turning, make sure you share you own lists with me on Spotify!

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Tuesday, September 25th, 2012 | Author: Casey Criswell

I first discovered Band of Horses with their 2007 album Cease to Begin. That was an album that sounded experimental, filled with haunting harmonies and a solid country/folk/rock sound. It hooked me pretty quickly as it made great back ground music for writing and those late nights when lying awake, unable to sleep. Over the past five years or so, my tendencies towards music have started to drift away from a lot of hard rock and punk and I began to be drawn to a lot of folk and alt-country. Still not ready to declare myself a fan of straight up country, (note: still not ready for that!) but Band of Horses fit in quite well with the new niche of music I was starting to enjoy quite a bit.

Despite enjoying Cease to Begin, I was still not a ‘die hard’ fan of Band of Horses. I’d throw them on from time to time, but they were never a band I would seek out to listen to repeatedly, as I do with some of my favorite bands such as The Old 97′s. In fact, I probably only listened to the band’s next album Infinite Arms two or three times at most. Digging through Spotify for new running tunes, I stumbled across their new release and added it to the play list and set out with open mind. In the end, I found myself enjoying the music, yet still seeing it as good background music by the time I was done.

Mirage Rock is a solid album but aside form the first single “Knock Knock” and two or three others late in the lineup, is packed full of slow melodies and ballads. These songs are still great; the harmonies are outstanding and contain the bands customary haunting sound. For me, I tend to enjoy the up beat alt-country sound that comes with the latter half of the album as the band’s rock roots come to the forefront and show us just how hard they’re able to rock. This isn’t to say I don’t like the slower paced songs mind you; I just happen to enjoy the southern rock sound that the band’s capable of more so and there’s just not as much of that.

Upon repeated listening, Mirage Rock is beginning to grow on me much like Cease to Begin did back in the day, which is a good, good thing. The final verdict? Definitely worth a listen.

You can check out the video for the first single “Knock, Knock” here!

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