37. Crackling, crooning
December 14th, 2020

Nils Frahm’s Christmas mixes
(File under: music, christmas, dust, horns)

Listen: youtu.be/3iW6q84pfPE

Nils Frahm makes elaborate post-classical techno from inside a walled city of keyboards and drum machines. He also makes annual Christmas mixes which have become a nascent holiday tradition for me these past few Decembers.

Each mix is an hour of dreamy, somewhat ghostly music—mostly instrumental jazz and choral/orchestral pieces, with the requisite Christmas standards peppered throughout, all under a thick layer of vinyl crackle and pop. These aren’t banger-strewn crowd-pleasers to win over a table full of guests, unless you’re having some kind of festive séance. Consider it ‘lo fi oldies radio - beats to relax/wistfully drink mulled cider to’.

Nils has shared these mixes for years on his Mixcloud profile, but Mixcloud was frustratingly unavailable at the time of writing this email (presumably visited by the Ghost of Christmas Server Problems). Hopefully by the time you read this it’ll be alive and ready to shuttle you softly through the season.

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