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by Stephanie Benson

October 28, 2011

Friday Mixtape: Late Night Tales

by Stephanie Benson  |  October 28, 2011

LateNightTales is a mixtape series that "invites the world's best artists to delve deep into their music collections to create the ultimate 'late night' selection." MGMT, Midlake, Belle & Sebastian, Snow Patrol, Jamiroquai, The Cinematic Orchestra and others have curated their own LateNightTales, featuring their favorite nocturnal aural pleasures. These compilations not only reveal the curators' influences, but also offer a wide range of candlelit gems with which to soothe and seduce.

It's a great series (definitely check out the latest one by MGMT), so I thought I'd create my own Late Night Tales mixtape. I'm often drawn to music primed for late nights anyway -- tunes slick with midnight-oil mystique and back-alley grime; tracks fueled by booze, narcotics and self-pity; and songs that are darkly detached, desolate and sometimes downright depressing. For me, this means the sexy devilishness of trip-hop (Massive Attack, Tricky), the grandiose moping of post-punk (The Cure, Joy Division), the machinest grit of industrial (Suicide, Nine Inch Nails), the cinematic melancholy of post-rock (Sigur Ros, Mogwai), and some of the darkest singer-songwriter mire known to man (Cat Power, Johnny Cash). This is the kind of stuff the sun could never handle.

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