Dear readers, it is with great excitement that we bring to you our latest and greatest playlist, AS XX. For those of you who have stuck by our side, this playlist is a follow-up to AS X. For our newer readers, let me explain the concept. Every tenth playlist we stop to take a look back and pick the top five songs from the last nine playlists to create an “ultimate” playlist that we could all agree on. With that, each Snob has taken the time to reflect back on AS 11 – 19.
We have reached another milestone: the twentieth playlist in the Audio Snobbery catalogue is only our second to look backwards, through playlists 11 – 19, in an attempt to synthesise the “best of the best” for your listening pleasure. Compared to AS X, this one was easier — our radars are getting better, you see. Whether it’s Prince’s Purple Music, or La Femme’s It’s Time To Wake Up (2023), there is something for every listener in here, with necessary nods to old Snobbery flames (Fiona Apple; Will Powers) included as reminders.
And what of the future? As the cover art for AS XX hopefully displays, expect new visuals for the Audio Snobbery aesthetic, more playlists themed to match moods and needs, à la John’s House Classics and my own Dumb Bell & kalefucker, and some more in-depth looks at some artists much closer to my heart, as it’s time I shared what they mean to me.
What’s more, with the pesky pandemic also behind us, you’re already beginning to see us return to live music as quickly as we can—and believe us, you really want to make sure you catch Black Country, New Road before your friends so that you can tell them how cool and early you were (thanks to us, of course).
In the meantime, however, AS XX is here to keep you happy—and if you can resist the urge to start tapping your feet as soon as opener Jay-Z’s Lost One kicks off the tunes, I don’t know what to say to you other than seek musical help; you must need it.
The music we, the Snobs, have been listening to for the last (nearly!) 2 years – yeah, we know by now that “covid” years won’t really count as “normal” years when you’ll look back, but still, that is a very long time. And what have we been listening to? Well, to a bit of everything to be honest – from old school classics from the likes of Talking Heads, The Velvet Underground or the one and only Tim Maia, to the more recent efforts of Christine and the Queens, DARKSIDE and, ironically enough, the legendary Paul McCartney. But we also dwelled on music from all-time classics like GTA Vice City via Luther Vandross, and gave another shot at the long forgotten The Kooks whilst keeping a regular update on the career progress of our much beloved kali uchis. With Marvin Gaye side-by-side with The Clash, or indie stars Methyl Ethel and Mega Bog sharing the playlist with NIN or Black Country, New Road, there is, we can guarantee, something for every musical taste.
Against all odds and certainly not without our fair share of hurdles, we are happy to announce we have made it to playlist # 20! Since AS X we have continued to fine tune our human curation algorithm and our constant musical trip outs to deliver what we truly feel is an even finer line up of gems.
This particular collection features many of the usual suspects and soon to be official members of the Snob Hall of Fame: Tim Maia, Prince, Talking Heads and 2Pac as I am sure comes to no surprise if you’ve been around here for a while.
New additions worthy of the Mascarado mention include: Kingdom Come era Jay-Z, who we have welcomed to Spotify with the opener slot and Peter Cat Recording Co. who is worth noting for inducing 3 simultaneous trip outs upon a first listen for John, Ocaton and myself. We had no idea New Delhi could swoon like that!
As always we hope you enjoy, stay tuned for the next series! (we think you will really like what we’ve got cooking!
Like the rest of the world, the last two years have passed us by in a moment’s notice, all the while feeling like time has been suspended indefinitely – a very alien equilibrium we have all universally found ourselves in.
And, in times of trouble, Mother Mary does not come to me, AS XX does. Featuring the soothing tones of the Snobs’ usual suspects, AS XX has made our respective living rooms come pandemic bunkers ever more our collective musical sanctuaries.
Friends found in the form of Will Powers and The Raveonettes made the daily exercise routine of moving from dining table (office) to sofa (breakout area) a much more livable experience. I dread to think what mental state I would be in without their support.
We hope that AS XX brings you the same healing qualities it brought us. Now you can even enjoy it with the presence of friends in your own home, not that you can bear being in your living room for more than 10 minutes though.
To summarize the best of the best of the better part of 18 months of music is no easy feat. Luckily, your dear Snobs learned a few things over the last year and a half that has allowed us to streamline our operations. The result is a two glorious playlists totaling 90 songs of the crème de la crème from AS 11 through AS 19.
This was always going to include some outstanding selections our Heroes, including Prince’s Purple Music, Talking Head’s Born Under Punches (The Heat Goes On) and David Bowie’s Waiting For the Man. There’s new music from our favorites that has us VERY excited for what’s to come (I’m looking at you Trent Reznor).
Our human algorithm has also managed to uncover some amazing newer upstarts such as the likes of Black Country, New Road’s Track X and Opus, Sault’s Pray up Stay up and the infectious crooning of Peter Cat Recording Co.’s Memory Box (both John and El Mascarado know what’s up). Then there are those divisive finds and oddities that split Snob opinion like The Normal’s Warm Leatherette that we’ve stumbled upon (if it’s good enough for Grace Jones to cover, it’s good enough for me).
Thank you all for sticking along for the ride with us, we hope you’ve enjoyed yourselves. Here’s to another ten playlists of exquisitely curated music.
Now, we hope you sit down with a glass of your favorite drink of choice, explore this lovingly curated playlists and find some favorites of your own.
With love, as ever.