CMU Playlists

Playlist: Mazes

By | Published on Wednesday 27 February 2013


Formed in 2009, Mazes signed to FatCat Records and released their debut album ‘A Thousand Heys’ in 2011. For their second album, ‘Ores & Minerals’, which was released earlier this month, the band adopted a new, more focussed songwriting method.

Explains frontman Jack Cooper: “We set about trying to make a record that was far more original and broader than the first one… a representation of all the things that inspired us rather than a small portion. We began writing with us in mind, playing to our strengths. ‘Bodies’ was the first song – like most of the album written to repetitive loops and drones. The demo had an Arthur Russell drum loop because it sounded how Neil drums so I guess that’s where we were at”.

With the album now out, the band are currently on a tour of the UK, with a show in Brighton’s Prince Albert tomorrow night and one at Birthdays in East London on Thursday. Ahead of the tour, we asked Cooper to make us a playlist, which he did. He also sent this message, which was nice of him: “Hello readers of CMU. As a band with strong ethics, we only do playlists and interviews for websites that we look at ourselves. For instance, we wouldn’t do one for McDonalds Music (probably exists) but we would do one for XVideos or CMU. So, here is a Spotify playlist. Unfortunately, Spotify doesn’t have any music by Royal Limp, Primitive Parts or Led Zeppelin. But we love those bands too”.

Subscribe to this playlist on Spotify, and then read on to find out more about Jack’s choices:

01 Lungfish – Fearfully & Wonderfully
Maybe one of the most beautiful song titles ever. Ian MacKkaye described Lungfish as “a spring, a beautiful body of water that everybody should take a swim in” and I can’t really put it any better. In many ways they only have one type of song, but they execute it with a new subtlety each time, constantly perfecting it like Jiro Ono the master sushi chef.

02 Fugazi – Life & Limb
I’ve never really listened to Fugazi too much but something began to resonate recently. I guess I got stuck on Minor Threat and lots of other Dischord things, but my girlfriend plays them a lot and it’s something I’m really enjoying at the moment. Two classic songwriters that are the black to the other’s white and vice versa.

03 Vision Fortune – Heavy Saddles
Vision Fortune are fairly new but I think already they have a heaviness, artistically and sonically, that’s very rare. They’re described as psychedelic but any revivalist images that that conjures couldn’t be further from the case. They’re dense like a black hole.

04 Parquet Courts – Master Of My Craft
I’m sure there aren’t many of these lists at the moment that don’t mention Parquet Courts. Again, a band my girlfriend switched me onto. She lived in Austin and knew them through their old band Teenage Cool Kids, who are also and possibly more so, very great. They remind me of Nodzzz, who I think are an absolutely perfect band.

05 Hookworms – Medicine Cabinet
Another great modern band who we can count as friends. A compelling live act, with the intensity of Acid Mothers Temple, their new record – an LP on Gringo – is a force. Could sit alongside anything Comets On Fire did.

06 Harmonia – Watussi
Like the best days, the best songs never get going. They just are. I can’t imagine what it must’ve been like to be in Harmonia… having lunch with Rother, Roedelius and Mobius… did they laugh and joke around? Drink beer?

07 Dean Blunt – XXX
We went to see Hype Williams last year and I think anyone who was there will remember it forever. An absolute experience in every way. I can’t figure it out. Can’t wait to see what they do next.

08 Philip Glass – Koyaanisqatsi
The week after Hype Williams, I went to see Philip Glass perform a live score to ‘Koyaanisqatsi’. I’m still getting over it.

09 Max Richter – Spring 2
From the ‘Recomposed: Vivaldi’ record that came out last year. I’m still impressed that we’re on the same label as Max. An amazingly talented dude and someone I look up to very much. I still feel slightly overwhelmed by classical music but people like Max are a way in for a lot of people.

10 Antelope – Reflector
Underrated and generally forgotten but absolutely incredible.