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Unlike my freshman roommate, I never had the ability to study while listening to my favorite songs. I just couldn’t handle the competition between written text and sung vocals.
But that all changed in grad school when I discovered the magic of instrumental playlists. With instrumentals, I could appease my need for audio stimulation without those pesky, distracting vocals. I compiled lists of instrumentals by my favorite bands (Pixies, Yo La Tengo, American Analog Set), threw ‘em on my iPod, and enterred a beautiful zen-like state.
Above is a playlist of my 10 favorite instrumentals from the OurStage instrumental channels. Here’s a track list:
- Ian Mackintosh reminds me of Fatboy Slim meets The Verve on “Too Long To Remember“
- Max Goldston plays a soothing, solo-acoustic guitar ballad, “Song for Louisa“
- Zap Rosdower serves up a heaping plate of shoe-gazing dreaminess on “SS Triangle“
- Josiah Wordsworth with an everchanging piano epic, “Witch Hunt“
- The Informati channels Sigur Ros with “Confutatis Et Lacrymosa” (contains vocals, but I can’t understand them so I made an exception)
- Sepia sounds like Mark Mothersbaugh with a simple, uplifting string arrangement on “Et Les Jours Passent“
- Eroica brings spare, reverb laden guitars (ala Explosions In the Sky) on “[ ]“
- Barneo makes easy listening music bearable with classical guitars on “Muravi“
- Hip-hoppers Philadelphia Slick focus on jazz with “Culture Industry Instrumental“
- Jimynjean paints a haunted, dreamy landscape with “Sleeping Earth“
If you find any others you’d like to add, write me a comment and let me know. Enjoy! (And start studying, you lazy bum.)