Oct 02, 2013

Nominee Playlist: Spit Syndicate

Nominated for Best Hip-Hop Album for Sunday Gentlemen, Spit Syndicate - aka Nick Lupi and Jimmy Nice - create a playlist showcasing some of the best Aussie sounds.

Tame Impala – It's Not Meant to Be

Nick: I chose this song because it’s an incredible song, the opener of a hugely influential album. No one was making music like this in a contemporary setting until Tame Impala came along. It doesn’t sound like anything else going around, at the moment anyway. Could have picked any number of their songs but I thought this as the first song on their debut record was a good place to start. There’s not exactly a deeper meaning to the song that I connect with; it’s more the sounds, the way the vocals are treated and mixed, the melodies that Kevin Parker writes and records. He’s a genius in my eyes.

The first time I heard it was sitting on a balcony at an old share-house, with a great pair of headphones and a freshly cracked beer/spliff combo. Best way to experience new music. People make the fairly obvious connection with Tame Impala and Led Zeppelin and 70s psych rock, but I believe Tame Impala have their very much their own sound and lane. It reminds me of 2010, and many beers and spliffs. This one didn’t exactly influence the way I wanted to write music, not in any direct way anyway. It’s just a mad song, mad album, great band.

Crowded House - Into Temptation

Jimmy: I picked this song because it reminds me of my childhood home, and for me it is one of the most powerful pieces of poetry I've come across. Not only does it make me feel as if I'm sharing the same headspace as the artist telling the story, but it's message acts as a sort of counterbalance for me if I ever stray off course. When I first heard it I would have been a child at home, which at the time was a two-bedroom house in Tempe. Although I'm sure my mother played it long before I could recognise or interpret it. This song reminds me of that same Tempe home from my childhood.

This track made me look further into how and why certain songs engage you, or draw you in. The different ways to describe or paint a scene, the different points of view, how the structure of a song can build suspense and take you from a-b. All these tools have influenced my own approach to making music/ writing in general.

Hilltop Hoods - The Sentinel

Jimmy:  We both picked this one. This was one of the first rap songs that I'd heard delivered with an Australian accent. Around this time, the Aussie accent was a lot harder for people to digest (myself included) but this song had style and class and was so pivotal for me and countless others who ended up making hip hop music.

Nick: This song marks a turning point in my life, I always been an avid listener of hip-hop but this was the track to open up a whole new world for me. One that has no doubt shaped where I am today. Much has been said and written about the Hilltop Hoods and the influence they had on the younger generations of fans and aspiring rappers, but that will never properly capture just how important they were. I first heard this song in Solo from Horrorshow's lounge room in his family home. We were very young. For me, this song reminds me of my graffiti days, hanging out at the local skate park.

This song made me want to write and perform rhymes from an Australian point of view, with my own voice and accent.

Empire of the Sun - We Are The People

Nick:  Again, we both chose this song separately. We picked this song because it is like no other song I've heard before, the whole album Walking on a Dream just blew me away when I first heard it. For me, this song symbolises kinship. Powerfully deep but mad euphoric at the same time. I was driving in an ex-girlfriend’s car, lightly toasted, when I first heard this song. This sounded like nothing else at the time, massive record.

This song reminds me of 2008/09 summer. Everybody I know was in a super carefree zone. Me and Jimmy took some of the money we’d made from music (hardly anything really, haha) and went to Thailand on a holiday, this song was definitely an important part of the soundtrack to that trip.

This song had no direct influence, but the dreamy chorus vocals, and the different sections the song has (two choruses, mad bridge, ill verses, etc) definitely jumped out at me from a writing perspective.

Horrorshow - In My Haze

Jimmy: I've chosen this track because it so perfectly depicts the feeling of being in a completely different dimension. Solo has the ability to make you feel like he's telling you a story one on one.

Nick: I grew up with Solo so we've shared many experiences together and this period in our lives is captured effortlessly by both him and Jane Tyrell. This song is actually inspired by an experience during a trip to Amsterdam that we were both on.

Jimmy: I first heard this song in its working form In Nick Lupi's room at our old house in Lilyfield. We were making our album Exile at the time and Solo was making Inside Story at the time so we shared a lot of demos with each other.

It reminds me of being detached from reality, yet still maintaining some level of control. I've only felt it a few times, but this song can cue those memories easily for me.

This song has perfect balance and harmony and Is way ahead of its time. Similar to Into Temptation in the way that it takes you elsewhere for a few minutes, clever song-writing and beautiful execution.