Tag Archives: Pretty Lights

Hot Routes: Week Six

5 Oct

Editor’s Note:  This is the Swanky roundup of our top picks and songs of the week, running every week of the 2012 Year of Football.  For a primer, check out the Introduction.

Week Six

LSU (5-0) at Florida (4-0)

The pick:  Florida (+3)

The track:  Apocalypse Dreams by Tame Impala

Florida over LSU is the popular upset pick this week, and while I don’t think it’s as big of a lock as some analysts are saying, I do think the Gators have a great chance to win or at least keep it within 3 points.  The Swamp will be a very hostile place for an LSU team that has already looked shaky against lesser competition like Towson.  What’s a Towson?


Miami (4-1) at Notre Dame (4-0)

The pick:  Miami (+14)

The track:  Lady High (Kanye West vs. Chromatics) by Carlos Serrano

I don’t normally get into ‘mashup’ remixes – while they could be interesting at first listen, it usually starts to seem like a novelty gimmick shortly thereafter.  The end result is often just going back to the original songs because they’re still better on their own.  This particular mix by Carlos Serrano stands out however because it’s got a hauntingly banging beat, and it features some of my favorite old-school Kanye verses.


Georgia (5-0) at South Carolina (5-0)

The pick:  South Carolina (+1)

The track:  So Bright by Pretty Lights

This is a pretty even matchup on paper, but I think there are a few key things going in S.C.’s favor that will allow the old Ballcoach to take this victory.  First, the Gamecocks are at home, and that stadium is going to downright rowdy.  Second, Georgia just lost their top WR for the year, and that could lead to some uncertainty for their high-powered offense.  Finally, S.C.’s defense is an elite unit that might be the most talented in the country.  They’ll bring everything they’ve got against Georgia.


Tennessee Titans (1-3) at Minnesota Vikings (3-1)

The pick:  Vikings (-6)

The track:  Unpretty (Follow Me Remix) by TLC

Allow me to dip back into the late 90s for a moment with some TLC slow burn action.  I can’t say I was meaning to listen to an old TLC ballad when I came across this sultry remix, but there’s something about this song that brings up some pleasant nostalgia for the grade school days.  Also, electronic touches look pretty good on TLC.  “No Scrubs” dubstep mix coming soon?


Chicago Bears (3-1) at Jacksonville Jaguars (1-3)

The pick:  Bears (-5.5)

The track:  Blue Velvet (Penguin Prison Remix) by Lana Del Rey

This line isn’t bigger because the Bears are traveling on a short week.  I still think Chicago will win by at least a touchdown though, because the Jags are just not a very good team.  The Bears’ opportunistic D will have plenty of chances to take advantage of the eventual Blaine Gabbert mistakes.


Baltimore Ravens (3-1) at Kansas City Chiefs (1-3)

The pick:  Ravens (-6.5)

The track:  Honey by Swim Deep

I don’t know what exactly it is about this song, but it is oddly catchy in a way that I can’t totally explain.  My best guess is that it’s mostly due to the mid-90s power-pop anthem heart that is beating strongly underneath its indie exterior.  With its “Ooo, ooo baby” hook and idealistic vocals about dreaming and cute girls, this will sound perfect over the ending credits of American Pie 5.

Last Week’s Record:  5-1

Overall Record:  13-15


Personal Soundtrack

27 Jan

The Song

We Must Go On by Pretty Lights


Two Pretty Lights soundtracks in a row?  Yes.  Derek Vincent Smith, a.k.a.  the man behind Pretty Lights, has dropped a new track and it’s here just in time for your lazy Saturday/Sunday enjoyment.  “We Must Go On” is a departure from the hard-hitting bass-driven tracks that PL has released lately, bringing in a catchy soul sample and a laid-back drum beat that takes its time grooving along.  The song builds up a propulsive, low-key momentum, while at times it threatens to follow the soaring vocal sample and drift off into the ether – giving everything a feeling of dreamy, perpetual motion.  Hopefully this track is indication that Pretty Lights will release an EP or full-length album in the near future.  In the meantime, let this one ride and enjoy 5+ minutes of stress relief.

The Activity

You were in a hurry to make some appointments this morning, and didn’t have time to make a proper breakfast.  So you grabbed the muffin your roommate left on the table, not stopping to wonder why it was wrapped individually, or why it tastes kind of funny.  And by the time you recall your roommate’s tendency to indulge in the occasional edible, you’re already in your car and are starting to feel nice and laid back.  At that moment, you take a look at the sunny day outside,  and the good looking people headed to the park – you can’t fight it.  You pull over to your friend’s place, borrow his dog, grab a leash and some headphones, and head out for a nice long walk.  Followed by an ice cold microbrew and some good company.  A long stressful day has become a Treat Yo Self day, and you couldn’t be happier.

Personal Soundtrack

20 Jan

The Song

Finally Moving by Pretty Lights


Etta James has sadly passed away, but her beautifully soulful voice will continue on to be appreciated by future generations.  This particular generation is hearing more Etta than usual lately, with her vocal track from the song “Something’s Got A Hold On Me” being sampled for the hook in songs from Avicii and Flo Rida.  The same vocal track, with it’s yearning ‘Ohhhh sometimes..’ was used masterfully a few years back in the Pretty Lights track “Finally Moving,” and I imagine that Etta would consider this song to be a worthy addition to her legacy.  Pretty Lights has an amazingly diverse array of sounds in their catalog, and “Finally Moving” falls into the ‘laid-back reflective’ section of the PL Library.  It also falls into the ‘Best of’ section, as it mixes modern electronic sounds with Etta’s vocals to create a haunting and hopeful song that sticks with you.  This is electronic soul.

The Activity

It’s a quiet weekend morning, and the rain is coming down outside.  You’ve got a lot on your mind, because let’s face it – you’re a pretty soulful individual.  But on this particular morning, you’ve got a feeling that you’ve never, never, never had before, and you can’t be stuck sitting around inside.  So really, the only thing to do is go outside in the rain and hop on a bike, skateboard, skates – whatever you’ve got that will get you mobile and moving in lyrical reflection through your home city.  If you don’t have anything, just go ahead and borrow some wheels from your neighbors, and trust that they will understand.  At least for this morning, your mind, heart and future are all wide-open, and the oh-so-soulful Pretty Lights mix of Etta, swelling strings, and record scratching is the only thing that can relate to how you feel.