Friends Adam Tickle and Alistair Williams have recently started a project that gives people perfect at-home playlists, constructed exclusively using vinyl records.
The idea of using nothing but wax to put together a mix isn’t a brand new phenomenon, but the way in which Adam and Alistair select their records is. A new wave of current DJs produce super-nerdy, all-vinyl disco or techno sets, but they tend to stick to the one genre and go deep. This has its place, of course, but Alistair and Adam opt instead to traverse a broad range of musical fields and create something more reflective of their wide tastes. This results in delightfully diverse mixes that are perfect for discovering hidden gems.
They kindly agreed to put together an exclusive mix for FvF, and it’s an absolute peach. We caught up with Adam to get an insight into the HomeListening world.
Latyrx – Balcony Beach
Digable Planets – The Art Of easing
The Rubaiyat of Dorothy Ashby – The Moving Finger
Tommy Guerrero – Atacama
Khruangbin – Two Fish And An Elephant
Cymande – Listen
Cream – Sleepy Time Time
Smith – Baby, It’s You
The Jam – English Rose
Nils Frahm – It Was Really, Really Grey
Anna Domino – Trust, In Love
Sally Oldfield – Night Of The Hunter’s Moon
John Martyn – Please Fall In Love With Me
Leon Lowman – Morning Song
Kris Kristofferson – To Beat The Devil
Buffalo Springfield – For What It’s Worth
Howlin Wolf – Tail Dragger
The Jimi Hendrix Experience – Castles Made Of Sand
Land Of Light – Flares
Could you give us a brief rundown of what the overall concept behind HomeListening is, and who came up with it?
HomeListening is a monthly, all vinyl mix series recorded live by myself and my friend Alistair Williams. The concept behind the mixes is to record a curated hour or so of music to be listened to at home.
Who is involved in the project, and do you all contribute equally?
Currently it is just myself and Alistair and we tend to split the music selections equally—we have a similar taste in music and both buy a lot of records. The project was born out of getting together to share our latest purchases. Unlike an mp3 or a Spotify link, you can’t share vinyl over email.
How do you go about sourcing the records that are featured on the mixes?
We both spend an unhealthy amount of money on Discogs (online vinyl marketplace) as well as visiting record stores, markets and so on. The internet has made picking up vinyl really easy and in many ways created a fixed price for a release. It is harder to find a bargain these days because anyone can go online and see a record’s value. There is nothing quite like finding a gem for £2 in a charity shop though. We have a friend who picked up all that ambient Brian Eno stuff for next to nothing.
What does it take for a record to make the cut and appear on a mix?
We try and keep the mixes eclectic, however a record can’t be too rowdy or challenging. We think music for the home should be quite laid back.
The Rolling Stones 'Their Satanic Majesties Request'
Do you ever find it limiting that you only work with vinyl?
Yes, sometimes we come across tracks that would work perfectly for one of the mixes but it might be really rare and only available on Youtube. If this is the case we will often make the effort to track it down and pick it up on vinyl, if the price is right.
You make these mixes specifically for listening to at home, are you ever tempted to do a special ‘dancefloor’ themed mix?
There is definitely a dub mix waiting to come out, maybe GardenListening is the next project.
You have a particular visual aesthetic for the mixes using vintage interiors, why have you chosen these?
A lot of the music we are currently buying comes from the ’60s and ’70s and the home interiors of that era are amazing. I have been obsessed with them for a long time and they feel like a good fit.
Do you have any particular goals for the series?
To curate the soundtrack to Grand Designs.
What drove the song selection for the FvF mix?
This is the first mix we have done that includes any hip hop. For some reason we had a feeling you guys had a soft spot for it.