Much like the classic mixtape, Tracklisted presents a collection of songs under a selected theme, which you can check out below. Click on the provided Spotify playlist and listen to this week’s arrangements while you read a few words about the selections.
20-year-old Robert Tilden goes by the pseudonym BOYO. He’s been involved with L.A.’s DIY scene since he was 16 years old, where he spent time as the frontman of Bobby T. and the Slackers, which also featured Girlpool’s Cleo Tucker. His new record, Me, Again, is set to be released via Danger Collective Records in January. In his own words, here’s what he had to say about his Tracklisted selections:
“When I was in high school, and even now, I like to use songs to help me get into a certain headspace. Here’s a dramatic example: beating yourself over the head with your glove listening to the “Rocky” theme about to enter the ring. Here’s another: listening to “Idiot Wind” by Bob Dylan while knowingly driving into a breakup situation. Anyway, none of these aforementioned examples are autobiographical. But personally, whether I was a bespectacled, Pink Floyd merch-toting preteen listening to Iggy Pop to gain some confidence before walking into a party, or a gaunt, hermit of a college student listening to Beach House records like lullabies from the netherworld, songs always manage to be a best friend in times of need.”
Deerhunter — Sailing
This song sounds and feels like sitting on a boat, sailing away from all your troubles while Bradford Cox wistfully serenades you with a last song while you both take your last breaths. Conversely, this song is also great light shower listening. Not kidding.
Jerry Paper — Kill the Dream
I got a very intense, strange spell of social anxiety after coming home from a tour and feeling sort of displaced and aimless. We had played a show with Jerry Paper once before, and had two coming up. The CD for his last record, Toon Time Raw, was on constant repeat in my car. “Kill the Dream” was the one I always went back to, though, to give me a sort of pep before walking into a room that seemed scary or dark or intimidating.
Iggy Pop — Lust for Life
From the drum intro to the last howls, if you see me sulking with no energy left, this song will hit me like a Cliff Bar to the face…and I mean that in a good way.
John Lennon — Remember
Anytime a long, tumultuous drive is ahead, this song is usually at the top of playlists. There’s something super pre-Spoon about it, the attitude and the piano. It’s chuggy and has purpose, and John Lennon sounds like a reserved madman on the verge of doing a Creedence impression.
The Strokes — Soma
Is This It, as a record AND an idea, has been a universal constant in my life since my 7-year-old self got a secondhand copy from my brother, and had my lil’ mind blown to the ceiling. Those songs made me realize you could mess with your voice — hide it even, and that production and sounds and songs weren’t this binary “good” or “bad,” “clean” or “dirty” kind of thing. These were pretty pop songs in these grimy, intimate, bite-sized forms you could digest without feeling like you were having some sort of dishonest experience. I didn’t even know what “Soma” was in reference to (still on the fence a little) but that song…between the chord changes, the ennui in Julian’s voice, and the “stop…and GO,” it got me, and it still makes my days a bit brighter.
Beach House — Chariot
I’ve always been able to turn to this band when I need some comfort and TLC (tender, loving care, not the ‘90s R&B group, though I love them too). I found their record Teen Dream at a book reseller at this papermill in Western Massachusetts. The cover and the titles roped me in, and next thing I knew, my mind was swirling with their melodies every time I feel asleep or got up. This song, “Chariot,” isn’t on that record, but to me is an extension of that feeling of embracing loneliness and leaving behind feelings of isolation and a general lack of sanity for something more quaint, comfortable, pretty, and ethereal.
Death Grips — Say Hey Kid
Unlike the last song mentioned, this song is when you want to ride out your mental demise a little bit. It makes me feel almost superhuman briefly, especially when in situations where I otherwise would be shuffling past with my head down. For a brief period in 2015, I was staying with different people around New York City, and there were some nights I’d ride the Subway from Bushwick to Manhattan with bags to stay at my other friend’s place. Certain dark, ominous nights, I would ride back in the witching hours of the morning with some interesting, potentially shady characters, and small little situations would ensue before my eyes. To not look terrified or become some sort of metropolitan prey, I would blast this song in my headphones, mess up my already disheveled hair, rub my already hooded eyes, and wear a crazy smile.
Scott Walker — It’s Raining Today
The only way I can really preface this is if you want a little bit of crooner-ey, Sinatra vibes in your day while cascading, foreboding dissonance grows in the background, this is the song for you. This is usually a mid-day, rumination song with enough prettiness to keep me goin’ and enough haunting creepiness to keep me questionin’.
The Beatles — If I Fell
Not much to intellectualize or even explain…this record, this song, this band, everything about it is primal and essentially can be reduced to a feeling, or multiple feelings all at once. The Beatles are the reason I write songs and make sounds and shake up and down and all about the town. Seeing A Hard Day’s Night at age four or five COMPLETELY solidified, in my mind, what I wanted to do and how I wanted to do it. I wore a suit to school every day that followed during that particular school year. Even the cover from my second LP is me in my “Beatles suit” after walking my brother down to a little scenic spot where I wanted to shoot my first “album cover.” These are love songs that make me still feel like falling in love, through my naive, contextless childhood, then my angsty punky teen years, to my now confusing and mind-boggling twenties.
The Beach Boys — God Only Knows
My favorite song/recording/performance/mel
Pre-order information is forthcoming via Danger Collective Records. In the meantime, you can check out BOYO’s artist page, which features information on his other releases.
Photo Credit: Julien Kelly