Free mixes created by and exclusively for Headphone Commute
Mathias Van Eecloo - eisOtones 16
It's 2024, and Mathias Van Eecloo of LAAPS is back with another instalment (his 16th) of the eisOtones series, where he hand-selects and celebrates 50 pieces from 50 releases of the year. As is the case with other regular contributors to Headphone Commute (like Ryan Griffin of ASIP and Mike Jedlicka of Optic Echo), who continue this ongoing annual ritual, I always look forward to the eclectic sounds of eisOtones. We already know and celebrate the music featured on the LAAPS and IIKKI imprints (a separate showcase of which you can also stream here), and it's always a fascinating dive down the uncharted waters, spanning a diverse collection of genres, labels, and themes. I always think of it as a bit of a refresher (a "head-cleaner", if you will), to rinse the palette from the familiar and "normal" (whatever normal that may be) and check out the sounds on the outer edge of the musical universe, where, for some, they're at the centre, and it's ours that's on edge. So let's turn on, tune in, and drop out...
A Strangely Isolated Place - Reflection on 2023
Yes, folks, I am still rejoicing in last year. What can I say – I love to listen to great music, especially when it’s picked by someone else. And not just anyone – a trusted source! Ryan Griffin and I go back more than a decade now. Secretly, I’m even jealous of his capacity to operate one of the best labels on the scene today. At times, I toyed with the idea of starting a label too – but then, when would I have the time to write these words and share this music? And so, I leave it to the rest. For this annual entry in the Reflections series, we spend three hours (!) in the company of 42+ tracks selected by your reliable guide of A Strangely Isolated Place, where you will surely find new gems and inspirations. I’ll drop a short quote here, but you should check out a detailed write-up on this mix on ASIP’s dedicated page. If this wasn’t enough amazing music, you can also check out Ryan’s previous years’ selections here.
Optic Echo Presents Best Vinyl of 2023
This has been an ongoing tradition for over a decade (by my count, this is the 13th year). This time, I didn’t even reach out with a friendly reminder. Mike Jedlicka of Optic Echo just let me know that he’s already on it, and here we are with a selection of his favourite vinyl releases of the year. Every single year, I complain about the amount of music, and every single year, I keep wanting even more. And even as I drown in all of the releases, it’s always amazing to discover new and fantastic sounds from a trusted source. This trusted source, of course, is Mike Jedlicka. Even if our tastes do not align on all the genres (and that’s a good thing, may I add), I can always appreciate a good selection when I hear one. If you like these choices, be sure to check out the entire archive of Optic Echo Presents mixes (there is even one where he picks his favourites of the decade). Enjoy the journey, and may I remind you once again to please support the featured artists and labels! Won’t you buy a pint or a coffee for them? Then pick up the album on Bandcamp, even if you intend to play it on Spotify in the end!
Warmth - Archives 2023
Good morning, and welcome to the quietest week of the year. Did you have a good holiday? Before I sign off for the year, I think I’ve got one more gem to share with you. This is a wonderful label showcase and a reflection on this past year from a lovely independent Valencia-based imprint, Archives, curated and operated by Agustín Mena, aka Warmth. I’ve profiled plenty of its releases since its inception in 2015, and I must admit that Warmth’s Parallel (2018) has been on repeat more than others. If anything, it is only rivalled by Glow, which is his collaboration with Fionnlagh, recently released on December 8th, 2023 (you’ll hear a few tracks on this mix). In any case, enjoy the mix, and please support the featured artists! For full details and tracklisting, visit Headphone Commute's main site.
Good morning, and welcome to your Tuesday. I have a special entry in Headphone Commute’s Podcast series for you today. And if you’re just getting around to enjoying these, let me remind you that we have 325+ others available directly when you subscribe to the podcast, or you can download them from our offline archive (going back to 2009!). Anyway, it is not just a mix but an entire label showcase of Mathias Van Eecloo‘s amazing LAAPS imprint, covering releases in the last two years (2022-2023). I’ve hosted the first such showcase two years ago, so be sure to check out LAAPS 2020-2021 mix as well. Oh, and Mathias was generous enough to throw in a few IIKKI releases in there as well (just check out this tracklist!), so this is truly a compilation of some of the best experimental ambient albums from both of his fantastic labels, continuously mixed exclusively for you! As always, if you enjoy what you hear, please support the featured artists, and in this case, the labels as well!
Roel Funcken - Gorreliann Plasebant [Part 6 of 6]
Today, we conclude the 9+ hour mix by Roel Funcken with its sixth and final part. It's been a real journey, exactly as predicted, connecting time in a single, comforting, and beautiful stretch of sonic weave. If you pay attention to the track listing, you will notice how Funcken threaded pieces from repeating artists (sometimes even a few from the same release) to create a cohesive musical voyage, along with his expertly practised touch of additional post-processing to get it all nicely glued together. As promised, you can enjoy these instalments in a single long-playing track, which Funcken originally shared on his Soundcloud account under a different name. You can stream this and even download it here. Meanwhile, if you enjoyed your time with us, please support the featured artists and labels!
This is music curation at the highest level. I’ve listened while commuting, working, driving, thinking, reading, and working out. I’ve always found something that fit or created the appropriate mood. Thank you!
Pure Sonic Ecstasy
Headphone Commute never ceases to impress me with one amazing mix after another. It's the perfect music for long car drives, coding on the computer, washing the dishes, or anything where you want to enter a new sonic landscape.
One of my favorite memories was listening to a mix while walking through foggy, snow-covered woods, pure magic.
I've found out about many amazing artists thanks to this podcast. This podcast shows how beautiful the Internet can be if given the chance.
One of my favorite podcasts. Masterful and mesmerizing music. Painstakingly curated by one of the best in the biz.