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April 24, 2012 5:59 PM   Subscribe

Help me write a research paper all at once by providing me with the ultimate late-night write-a-thon soundtrack. Pop/Dance/Electronica edition, specifications within.

So the end of the semester is coming up, and of course there is that one major project that I've been semi-ignoring over the course of the semester and which I will now have to go into crunch mode in order to complete on time. (It's a fifteen-page survey of the family Cactaceae, if you must know.) As all of you who have been in this position before are no doubt aware, one of the critical components for the success of this project (aside from copious amounts of strong black tea and possibly a furtive cigarette or two out on the porch) is a quality soundtrack. That's where you come in.

I have recently discovered that nothing gets me in a mood for midnight productivity like poppy, electronic dance music. I'm talking the kind of stuff that you would hear in a club in Miami or Ibiza or wherever it is that they listen to this kind of thing. You see, I don't know anything about this genre and until very recently thought that I more or less despised all contemporary pop music. Which I still mostly do, at least if I listen to the lyrics.

Lyrical content, in this case, is totally unimportant. What I want is driving electronic dance beats that will make my thoughts fly like rockets and my heart race at 200bpm. I don't care if it's in English, in fact it may even be better if it's not. There must be plenty of melody, plenty of rhythm, and plenty of exhortation to dance (or write) the night away.

Also, critically, I need to be able to string your recommendations into a YouTube playlist so that I can easily automate the process of aggregating and listening to these songs with minimal curating effort. I'm not looking to add this stuff to my permanent collection, and I'm not looking to go out and buy albums or get any kind of education in the genre (though that may happen as a side-effect of tonight's experiment). What I want is links to YouTube clips of specific tracks that I can add to an ever-growing playlist as I work my way through the night.

Get to it, hivemind! Hit me with your hottest tracks! I will periodically return to the thread and provide feedback by Besting the tracks that work best for me. Many millions of thanks for your tireless efforts!
posted by Scientist to Media & Arts (29 answers total) 30 users marked this as a favorite
I'll be honest, I really know just about as little as you seem to about this genre and whilst I don't see kids in Miami these days dancing it up to Polica, I'm gonna recommend her anyway. Because she's awesome. And it's awesome. And it always puts me in the mood to do...like, stuff.

Favorite? 'Lay Your Cards Out'.
posted by youandiandaflame at 6:08 PM on April 24, 2012 [1 favorite]

Best answer: Loops of Fury
posted by nightwood at 6:16 PM on April 24, 2012 [1 favorite]

Lost in the K Hole (the chemical brothers)

ladytron (mu tron)

Some other names: Bonobo ( a bit mellower), fourtet (mellow but upbeat), Thievery Corporation
posted by a womble is an active kind of sloth at 6:26 PM on April 24, 2012

I don't know that you'd hear it in Ibiza but Telepopmusik is good electro-pop and always ended up on my paper-writing soundtracks in college. Love love love the Junior Boys too. Both these links go to my favorite tracks--if you like what ya hear, message me and I can give you more...
posted by lovableiago at 6:35 PM on April 24, 2012 [1 favorite]

Have to add this too--it gets me inexplicably pumped in a variety of situations...
posted by lovableiago at 6:38 PM on April 24, 2012

Response by poster: Great so far, but faster! And poppier! I am looking for music that goes beyond "relentlessly upbeat" and breaks straight through into "psychopathically cheerful". Not that I'm not seriously digging the suggestions thus far.
posted by Scientist at 6:55 PM on April 24, 2012

Best answer: the kind of stuff that you would hear in a club in Miami or Ibiza or wherever it is that they listen to this kind of thing

Oh man, you need BBC Radio 1's Essential Mix. It's a weekly program, 60-120 minutes of DJ mixed dance tracks, and you can stream several of the most recent programs. (The player wouldn't work for me in firefox, but works fine in IE.) These things got me through so many long nights of work in college, with motivation to spare.
posted by vytae at 7:06 PM on April 24, 2012 [2 favorites]

Pete Tong has two great CDs that fit the bill. Essential Mix and Essential Selection. There's even a tune called 3am on one of them. Enjoy.
posted by bricksNmortar at 7:27 PM on April 24, 2012

plus-tech squeeze box
posted by sebastienbailard at 7:45 PM on April 24, 2012

It's all gone a bit Pete Tong.
posted by zpousman at 7:52 PM on April 24, 2012

Ali Wilson - Pandora
posted by Bokmakierie at 7:55 PM on April 24, 2012

Oh DAMN you need French House Beats!
posted by Chutzler at 8:16 PM on April 24, 2012 [1 favorite]

It's even tagged "Happy Meal" for God's sake!
posted by Chutzler at 8:17 PM on April 24, 2012

It's not YouTube, but I listen to Digitally Imported streams when writing code.
posted by Max Camber at 8:22 PM on April 24, 2012 [1 favorite]

This might be a little off, but I listened to Dirty Talk by Wynter Gordon almost on repeat to get me through the 22 page paper I just wrote.
posted by kylej at 8:53 PM on April 24, 2012 [1 favorite]

Haha, if you want "psychopathically cheerful" music have you thought about branching into k-pop? SHINee's newish song Sherlock (Clue+Note) is pretty up there in terms of sheer production value, and if you don't understand Korean (I'm making no assumptions here) you don't have to worry about getting caught up in lyrics. (Also tremendous fun: MAMA by EXO-M (Mandarin))

Otherwise, a cursory comb through the less lyrical parts of my workout mix...

Madeon - Pop Culture

Bon Accord - Glazed

Gatekeeper - Storm Column

Little Boots - Love Kills (Buffetlibre vs Sidechains Mix)


Also, you might like turntable.fm, which basically consists of fairly well-moderated themed music "rooms" DJ'd by users— a bit like a crowd-sourced Pandora. There are sometimes duds and dickish members but in general I've found that it's really good for when you want to discover new music or want some mindless listening, no effort or YouTube playlists required!

Two rooms that you might be interested in:
- DJ Wooooo's House/Dance/Electro (perhaps at least somewhat up your alley?)
- Coding Soundtrack (less genre-specific; skews towards the nerdy and dubsteppy but in terms of bmp and sheer driving force it's very reliable)

Pop/Dance/Electronica are really popular genres so you'll see various rooms fluctuating in size over the course of a day; the two I listed are consistently well-tended. It might not be what you're looking for now, but if you're ever interested in the hands-off approach I definitely recommend tt.fm!

Good luck with your paper!!
posted by brieche at 9:06 PM on April 24, 2012 [1 favorite]

> I am looking for music that goes beyond "relentlessly upbeat" and breaks straight through into "psychopathically cheerful".

Are you aware of the genre known as Happy Hardcore?

Personally, I like listening to Digitally Imported's Goa and Psychedelic Trance station when I'm working (and at no other time, really.)
posted by contraption at 9:15 PM on April 24, 2012 [1 favorite]

Response by poster: You people are absolutely killing this. Thanks to you, I am absolutely killing my paper. Also:

I just figured out that it's supposed to be double-spaced.
posted by Scientist at 9:17 PM on April 24, 2012

Double spacing: NICE.

Also, if you didn't check out the Digitally Imported DJ Mixes channel (mentioned above) yet, it seems well within the realm of some of what you've marked best, at least right now while they're playing Mark Sherry Pres. Outburst Radio Show 250 -02 March 2012- guest John O'Callagan.
posted by salvia at 9:22 PM on April 24, 2012

Response by poster: kylej's link to Dirty Talk is thus far the best single track that represents the kind of music I was originally looking for.
posted by Scientist at 10:54 PM on April 24, 2012

Also, you might like turntable.fm,

I'm djing in this room pretty much 9-5 every day. Playing pretty much exactly what you're looking for.
posted by empath at 6:14 AM on April 25, 2012

Also, I've got 3 hours of mixes here that's all the style you're looking for.
posted by empath at 6:33 AM on April 25, 2012

As you come to the final hours of crunch time, you may find that a genre called Happy Hardcore or Happy Rave may come in handy. There are plenty of comps on spotify, and i bet pandora could build you something too.
posted by softlord at 6:36 AM on April 25, 2012

You must know Barbra Streisand, Mannequin and Might Like You Better
posted by ichomp at 9:46 AM on April 25, 2012

Response by poster: Tonight I'll be doing it all over again. I didn't leave it to the very last night. ;-) I don't suppose there's any way to log into turntable.fm without giving them my credentials from Twitter or Facebook? Because that kind of thing really grinds my gears and I would like not to encourage it if I can manage.
posted by Scientist at 12:59 PM on April 25, 2012

I hate the proliferation of Twitter/Facebook sign-ins, but I've accepted they're becoming more common and made an extra dummy Twitter account. If you have gmail, you can get round Twitter's one-account-per-email address by signing up as you@googlemail.com, rather than you@gmail.com, it'll read it as different addresses. What a faff, eurgh.
posted by pickingupsticks at 1:12 PM on April 25, 2012

Sorry, didn't read carefully, that doesn't help you get round using Twitter/Facebook entirely.
posted by pickingupsticks at 1:16 PM on April 25, 2012

For this situation I recommend Devo. I have tried this before and it works well with Mathematics, at least. I haven't checked for Biology but it should be worth a go.
posted by d11 at 2:20 PM on April 25, 2012

How about some techno with taiko drumming? Bangerz x San Jose Taiko
posted by ladyriffraff at 7:52 PM on April 25, 2012

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