Thursday, January 2, 2020

Always Chili, 2007 Electronica & The Sound Shirt

Weekly Update 2020-01: Hello, new year! A chill winter playlist by my friend Kaylin, looking back at my favourite year of electronic music and a shirt that converts sound waves into haptic rumblings onto your skin.

The Sound Shirt by Cute Circuit.

Music: Always Chili
My first music recommendation for 2020 comes from my friend Kaylin who has painstakingly compiled a list of almost seven hours of music that she associates with a chill, low-key winter day. Now that the holidays are over and we have all this excess winter to spend, we may as well make the most of it. Be careful, there are some tearjerking sad songs hidden in there! Don't let them get the best of you.

Larissa came back from Sudbury in one piece, so we got to have our last Hannukah family hangout on the last day of the holiday. Yay, full menorah!

Kaylin and Will came over to help light the candles too.

New Years wasn't a total disaster, as it sometimes can be. My friend Laura dragged us all to Etobicoke to a party her sister was throwing at a recording studio, and I have to admit it was pretty fun. Some highlights below:

A post shared by Chloe Silver (@chloesil) on

Not much going on this week due to holiday burnout, I hope to make time for a jam session on Saturday at my office with Eric, if he's cool to bring his guitar down to Liberty Village.

Random Thought: 2007 Electronica
With the new decade upon us, I am seeing lots of top ten lists in music and other media. In true nonsensical fashion, I decided to look back a little further, thirteen years to be exact, to a time period that changed my music listening forever.

Whenever electronic music comes up in conversation with anyone I know, it usually goes the same way. We agree that electronic music is one of our favourite genres, and then as soon as any band names are mentioned we realize that we're not remotely talking about the same subset of music. Electronic music is perhaps one of the most genre-straddling, constantly reinventing genres, with so many sub-sub-sub genres coming out of virtually every country in the world.

My first real launch into my subset of electronic music definitely happened around 2007. There was just something about that year being huge for major breakout releases from so many of my favourite electronic musicians.

Thirteen years after their release, I still play these albums constantly.

Just some of the amazing electronic albums to break out of 2007:
  • Mstrkrft - The Looks (Yay Canada!)
  • Justice - Self-Titled
  • Simian Mobile Disco - Attack Decay Sustain Release
  • Boys Noize - Oi Oi Oi
  • Digitalism - Idealism
  • Chromeo - Fancy Footwork (also yay Canada!)
  • Muscles - Guns Babes Lemonade
  • New Young Pony Club - Fantastic Playroom
  • Klaxons - Myths of the Near Future
  • Yelle - Pop Up
  • Caribou - Andorra (again yay Canada!)
  • Matthew Dear - Asa Breed
  • Battles - Mirrored
  • LCD Soundsystem - Sound of Silver
  • Architecture in Helsinki - Places Like This
  • Groove Armada - Soundboy Rock
  • MGMT - Oracular Spectacular
  • Daft Punk - Alive 2007 (arguably one of my favourite live albums of all time)
Taking even a short listen to a smattering of these bands will show you the true vastness of their sounds. From the rough Brit-rock electro stylings of Klaxons to the calm, thoughtful and meditative sounds of Caribou to the party-rock anthems of MGMT, this was truly a magical year of self expression through synths and wires.

Inspiration: Sound Shirt
It has always been a fear of mine that I might lose my hearing. Much as I rely on sight to complete most of my tasks (including biking and designing), I definitely require hearing to make life enjoyable. The main reason is that of music, how can one experience the joys of music without hearing? It feels like a terrible joke without a punchline.

But when I think of some of my favourite music with pulsing beats and dramatic drums, I realize it may be as much of a tactile experience as an auditory one. It would seem that one company has had a similar idea, introducing wearable tech that heightens the experience of someone with hearing loss to be able to enjoy the music as well.

The Sound Shirt by CuteCircuit absorbs sound waves and transmits them into tactile rumblings emitted by the shirt onto the wearer's skin.

Instead of hearing sounds that transfer into feelings in your brain, you can feel them on your skin instead. I imagine this experience might even be more impactful than listening, and perhaps even quite fun to try in addition to listening to music.

This is just another example of how inventions designed to help those with disabilities can also be useful for anyone. Learn more about the Sound Shirt here.

No comments:

Post a Comment