Friday Mixtape: The Art of Moving Boxes

There's nothing like a major move to make you appreciate cloud-based music. As I wrote last week, my mom is selling her house, so I've been tasked with going through the approximately 3,000 records I have stored in her basement, and figuring out which to sell and which to ship back to Berlin, where they'll join another couple thousand pieces of vinyl already eating up all the available floor space. (My girlfriend has told me, in no uncertain terms, that we have space for exactly 1,600 more -- that's the number of records that fits in Ikea's 4x4 "Expedit" model, the shelving of choice for DJs and hoarders the world over. So the culling is rather grueling.)

Despite a sore back, rug-burned knees and a frazzled brain, it's not all bad -- frankly, there's very little I'd rather do than just hang out with my records. There have been some happy surprises along the way, records I had no idea I owned: a pristine double of Theo Parrish's "Smile" to replace the played-to-hell copy in my DJ bag in Berlin, for instance, as well as 10 early singles from Parrish's Sound Signature label, all long out of print, and some of them fetching insane prices on Discogs.com. Speaking of insane prices, the process has reminded me that I really need a renter's insurance policy: the triple-vinyl edition of Boards of Canada's Geogaddi is going for upwards of $120; a white-label Global Communication remix of Lamb's "Gorecki" is selling for $160!

But in the end, it's not about the resale value; it's about the music. And while I'm paying an arm and a leg to ship my collection back to Berlin, you can listen to much of the same stuff right here on Rhapsody. In that spirit, today's Friday Mixtape is a selection of the songs I've been happiest to come across in my course through the corrugated maze, a cross-section of the electronic dance music I collected from the late '90s until around 2005 or so, when I moved to Europe and left the majority of it behind. (A special shout-out to my mom, who put up with it all these years.)

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