Moonlight Agency 2: serene
This edition of Moonlight Agency features songs that wash over you gently but surely, the tracks that sound gorgeous and/or beautiful, lush, melancholy and so on, and so on. Listening to them may imbue you with an uncanny sense of inner calm and serenity. And yes, I did miss on some of the songs and bands that could have easily ended up on here, but I’m saving those artists I could include for later – including Saint Etienne, Radiohead, The Depreciation Guild, The Chameleons, and lots more.
1. Boards of Canada – 5:9:78
One of the greatest Boards of Canada tracks, and an unreleased one at that. If even their unreleased tracks are that great?.. Mere words don’t suffice.
2. Lee Hazlewood – My Autumn’s Done Come
While this would sound much more natural if it was faded into from the previous edition’s “Bonfires on the Heath” by The Clientele, this autumnal, melancholy dirge about growing old still sounds at home in this capacity.
3. Death in Vegas – Girls
I’ve watched “Lost in Translation” three times already over this summer, and this track, that opens the film, still manages to send unbelievable goosebumps down my spine. It’s associated with Bill Murray looking in awe at the dazzling flashing lights of Tokyo from the taxi cab forever, at least for me.
4. Slowdive – Sleep
Another unreleased track that could easily rival the released oeuvre of the band. Well, to be completely honest, the entire recorded works of Slowdive could fill up this list, but with me sticking to the one song by artist per list, this isn’t happening. Just yet.
5. Brian Eno – An Ending (Ascent)
Yet another track, for which mere words don’t suffice. In fact, it is so becalming, that lots of people wish for it to be played at their funerals, including Coldcut and yours truly.
6. Orbital – Halcyon + On + On
This is my alternative choice for a funeral/deathbed soundtrack. Whatever you couple it with, whether it is images from nature or 2001: A Space Odyssey, it’s guaranteed to have the same hypnotic effect every time you hear it.
7. Thomas Dolby – Screen Kiss
If we discount it’s completely horrifying context in the Jam series by the ever so brilliant Chris Morris, we still get a lush, sad song about failing to reach fame in Hollywood. Still, “I’m coming back, Martina!..” Shudder.
8. Rachel Goswell – Coastline (Ulrich Schnauss vocal remix)
Rachel Goswell’s voice is one of an angel – it has been thoroughly proven by her work as a vocalist in Slowdive and Mojave 3, her solo work, and her backing vocals for songs by the likes of Chapterhouse etc. This sweeping reinterpretation of her solo song drives the point further home.
9. Ride – Chrome Waves
Despite the fact that it’s tempo is much higher than any of the songs on display here (well, except the Orbital contribution), Ride’s last stand still resonates as one of their most serene – if not THE most – and bittersweet offerings.
10. M83 – Safe
Oh, how I anticipate “Hurry Up, We’re Dreaming”. Can’t even convey it in my native language! In the meantime, one of the standouts on “Before the Dawn Heals Us” wraps up this playlist in a grandiose, cinematic way.
Sorry for not writing more detailed descriptions – it’s just before midnight in Ukraine and my brain doesn’t function quite properly… hopefully, more of these to come soon-ish.