A mixtape curated by Marcus Eoin was featured in the November 2005 issue of Dazed & Confused Magazine (Vol. 2 Issue #31). Marcus Eoin's commentary on each individual track is included below.
Mixtape: BOARDS OF CANADA
It's hard making a mixtape of only ten songs. It'd be easier to list a hundred, but then there wouldn't be any room left for fashion shoots and adverts for expensive trainers, so I guess I'll have to keep it to ten. I figured seeing as our new album is called The Campfire Headphase, that it would be good to choose some prime cuts to accompany autumn campfires. Don't ask me why, it just seemed the right thing to do. Here then, is my selection of spacerock bonfire anthems to keep warm with. You won't even need matches.
- John Denver "I'd Rather be a Cowboy" RCA, 1973
For collecting firewood, you need something really back-country, and you don't get more denim than this. I always get wood when I hear this. Try and find the vinyl album (Farewell Andromeda), it has mysterious cowboy/space imagery. Imagine that.
- John Frusciante "Regret' WEA, 2004
Now the fire's lit we need spacerock. I love this song, it just builds and builds into an inferno. Only someone who's been all the way and back could make a song so beautiful yet so fucked up. Just listen to the modulating vocal. Although that may just be on my copy.
- Sufjan Stevens "A Good Man is Hard to Find" Rough Trade, 2004
I can't stop listening to this song. Sufjan's voice seems to be rotating through a clothes spinner. There's a great out of tune chorus that shouldn't work, but does. Everyone should own this album.
- Smith Perkins Smith "Say No More" Island Records, 1972
A cowboy classic. Any song that uses the phrase "dust bowls" gets my thumbs up. I found this one in Oxfam. Every so often I bag a selection of vinyl in the charity shop, but going by the sleeve art only. You can build an instinct for good records based on their sleeves. My tip is to avoid ones where spandex or moustaches are present.
- The Beach Boys "Celebrate the News" Capitol, 1969
There's a Beach Boys song for every occasion. This track blows my mind so effectively. I have to be careful not to listen to it too often. Those descending flutes, the comedy "no more" vocals, and the best build-up ending in the history of pop. Who needs drugs when music's like this?
- Ween "Among His Tribe' Sanctuary, 2003
Time to get the marshmallows on. Ween are so good, they're like a hundred bands for the price of one. When I first heard them, I couldn't figure out if they were for real. Years later, I figured it out. Ween are deadly serious.
- Yo La Tengo "Tiny Birds Matador, 2003
I reckon this is one of their best songs. It's one of those records that does nothing more than is needed. There is something effortless about Yo La Tango that has always impressed me, they seem like a band who truly enjoy what they do. Time to gather some more combustibles.
- Bonnie Prince Billy "No More Workhorse Blues" Domino, 2004
The best use of pedal steel I've heard in a long while. A stunning song from Bonny Prince Billy, re-recording one of his earlier Palace Brothers efforts. The drafted-in vocals on the latter half are gut-wrenchingly majestic. There's a great video for this song by Harmony Korine that goes some way toward proving the less money you spend on the video, the better it gets.
- Mark Johnson "Asia Major" Radio Ghost Records, 2000
By now you might be lying on your back staring up at the stars. The term "criminally underrated" was invented for this guy. Sometimes the best records really are the hardest to get hold of. The sound of a voice, guitar, a Tascam 688 Portastudio and the best songwriting this side of the Kuiper Belt.
- Joni Mitchell "Amelia" Asylum 1976
Maybe the most perfect song ever recorded. Joni sings "some might find their paradise". Some might find it listening to this gem. When the fire's dying down and you want one last song echoing out as you make your way home, this should be it. Damn, is that ten already?