Wednesday, 19 December 2012

Forever Punk

Running in the winter is hardcore. So here's a little mix of punk, post-punk, math-rock, metal for the furious few left out there on the trails. Nothing electronic, lots of attitude, fast loud.  All tracks are available on the amazing music site Epitonic.  I usually try to limit myself to 6 songs on the free download lists, but these 7 tracks still clock in under 30 minutes. As usual click on the song to download, the band name will take you to the Epitonic page for the band.


Queen of Hearts by Fucked Up 90bpm
Yes let's fall in love!  This is a totally sweet little love song! Canadian.

Drug Control by 7-Seconds 91bpm
Short and to the point.  Don't dope people! It ain't a winning strategy. Oh and this track is only 39 seconds long.

Turbofonte by Chevreuil 87bpm
Instrumental. Get lost in this track listening to all nine and a half minutes. Frenchies.

Chasing My Mind by Holograms 94bpm
Isn't that what running is half about, chasing your mind? Swedish.

Craver by Lower 87
Has a dark sound, which I just love, officially downer punk. Danish.

Goergia X by Creedle 89bpm
Somewhere between metal and punk.  This is a great track. Plus they are from San Diego, a town I love.  

Yellow Guy / Pink Eye by Sleeping People 90bpm
Instrumental, more metal than punk.  I LOVE running to stuff like this.  It will add power to your stride. Again from San Diego.

PS the title is a homage to my current favourite band Die Goldenen Zitronen.  It's their 'cover' of Forever Young.  Not a good running song, but I couldn't resist!



Monday, 17 December 2012

Conquer Claustrophobia

It's been quite a while since I posted a track, especially one that isn't a free download.  But I think this one is worth the 99c or so you'll have to pay to download.  Its the Omar Souleyman's remix of Bjork's track Crystalline.  Its got this awesome eastern, desert nomad sound, with Bjork's crazy Icelandic manic melody.  Just lovely.  Plus I have to give a heads up to my pal Niall for putting this into my Facebook feed. He's got great music taste.

The BPM is 90 so perfect for a 180 SPM run. If the desert world sound isn't for you, the original version is also 90BPM.

Tuesday, 6 November 2012

6 Pack Nov 2012

So here this month's selection of 6 tracks, all legally and freely available for download from the amazing music site EpitonicTo download the song, click on the name of the song.  The band name links to the Epitonic page about the band. The BPM on all these songs is close to 90, so that's perfect for a 180 SPM (Strides Per Minute) run since 90 is half of 180, and the beat feels pretty much the same to me, between 180 and 90.  

La Belle Tocade by  ME & LP 92 BPM
ME & LP are Matthew Embree (Rx Bandits, Love You Moon) and Lisa Papineau (Big Sir) I'm a big Big Sir fan. American.  Indie Pop. I LOVE this track.  If you missed the Big Sir track I recommended its The Kindest Hour with a BPM of 90. 

Shooting Stars by Elysian Fields 91 BPM
From New York, this is lush and dreamy, has touches of down-tempo, jazz, pop.  This sort of thing goes either way for me, it can come off as cheesy, or I buy it.  Somehow here I buy it.

In Loco Parentis by The Better Automatic 89 BPM
American indie pop, with a bit of a hard edge.  Good strong beat.

We've Had Enough by Alkaline Trio 88 BPM
Punk from Chicago. I really don't know what makes these guys 'punk' and the last guys 'pop'.  I feel like punk used to be harder, well American punk to me usually sounds like pop. Again super beat.

Too Late To Topologize by Zammuto 94 BPM
Experimental electronic pop.  This is a happy bubbly song.  From New York.

Your Drums, Your Love by AlunaGeorge 90 BPM
British electronic female vocals. I like this because her voice reminds me of Martina Toply-Bird the singer on Tricky's first album.  But if I'm honest this is just not as dark and twisty as Tricky, but I still like it enough.  If you missed it she has another song on Epitonic You Know You Like It at 91 BPM that I've mentioned in a previous post. 









Tuesday, 23 October 2012

6 Free Running Songs for October 2012 part 2

So here's a second set of free running songs.  They are all legally and freely available for download from the amazing music site EpitonicTo download the song, click on the name of the song.  The band name links to the Epitonic page about the band.  


Anti Love Song by Betty Davis  93 BPM
Super old, funk, American.  I should hate it, but don't. 

You Gotta Know by Little Emily Warfield 94 BPM
Indie Americana Folk Rock.  

I Am Always The One Who Calls by Pedro the Lion 92 BPM
Seattle's Pedro The Lion give us this adorable little indie rock emo track.  

Rano Pano by Mogwai 93 BPM
Instrumental guitar noise from Glaswegian's Mogwai.  The beat is not too strong, but won't get in the way. 

I'm Not Invisible by Rocket From The Crypt 88 BPM
Pop punk rock from San Diego.  Easy to run to. 

We Were Sparkling by My Brightest Diamond 94 BPM
Sounds slow, but the BPM of 94 means it's actaully a bit fast for running. I had a My Brightest Diamond thing for a while, but after a few too many listens they started sounding a bit pretentious.  Regardless this is a lovely song, probably my favourite of theirs.  They are from New York. 

Thursday, 11 October 2012

Free Running Songs for October 2012 part 1

I've really reduced the amount of posts in the last few months. Part of it is just that I've been really busy, and also that my attention has sort of been else where. I've been massively geeking out over at Coursera. Anyway my Free Running Songs posts have gotten a lot more hits that the single video song posts. So unless I find a real gem, I'll just be sticking to the free download stuff, well at least for now. Oh and another post that has gotten a lot of hits, and that I think is worth a look at is Take Control of the BPM, in which I explain how to tweak the BPM of songs you already love, so if you missed that you might want to go have a look. 

OK so this time these free tracks are available at last.fm. I'll try to do an Epitonic post too before the end of the month.  

Freiheit by Tonic 94 BPM
German, hip-hop. unfortunately the last.fm page for Tonic is of another band that isn't this Tonic. I LOVE LOVE LOVE the lyrics to this. In fact I just love it. Its a fucking anthem to run to, to live to. Here's some bits of the lyrics I was able to pick up.

"es ist nie mals zu spat zu sein wenn du anfangst zu werden
Wege tragen Scherben damit du betriebst zu lernen
zu ehrer und begehren was dein Leben fuer ein Geschenk ist
...
jede deine schritte ist begleitet durch Freiheit
spreng die Ketten die Zeile und Leichtheit
ateme tief durch man dein Leben muss Frei bleiben"

which translates to something like this
"it is never to late to become, the path has shards so that you can learn to honor what a gift your life is ... every step in guided by freedom, cut the chains, the ropes and the easiness, breath deep man, your life must stay free".

You know I really like the sound of hip-hop but so usually is is barely masked 'my dick is bigger than yours' bullshit. German hip-hop is often much, much better than that. On last.fm there are several other runnable tracks from Tonic; Intro feat. Dj Corin (89 BPM), Monoton (93 BPM),  Letzten Tag (89 BPM),   Deine Entschiedung (90 BPM) and Wahrnehmung feat. Es-say (91 BPM) so go get your fill.


Séance on a Wet Afternoon by Girls Names 89 BPM
From Belfast.  Indie noisy pop.  


Erasers by Sequence Theory Project 90 BPM
Not too sure where these guys are from. Slow sad trip-hop. 

Flower Song by Jermook 95 BPM
Jermook are Russian, but it sounds like she's singing in an Asian language to me. Trip-hop but way more up beat than the last one.

Poor Droidcat by Psilodump 92 BPM
8-bit /  chiptune from Sweden. This track is AMAZING!  It is so good it makes my head hurt to listen to it.  

Jag Mötte Henne I Fredags by Bossfight 91 BPM
Also 8-bit but with some female vocals from fellow Swedes Bossfight

Monday, 24 September 2012

6 Free Running Songs for September 2012

Before September ends I better give you the heads up on some freely downloadable running music from EpitonicTo download the song, click on the name of the song.  The band name links to the Epitonic page about the band.  They all are close to 90 BPM so work for a 180 SPM (strides per minute) run.  Just in case this isn't obvious why, 90x2=180 and honestly I can't really even tell the difference, between a song MixMeister classifies as 90 or 180.  

No Rain (Pumpkin Remix) by Blind Melon 90 BPM
No Rain was a big hit in the 90s, but this remix gives it new life, and its old enough that I am no longer annoyed by its hit status.  Blind Melon are, well were, big indie rockers from LA.  

Who (with David Byrne) by St. Vincent 90 BPM
Annie Clark is a super hottie (well at least according to her photo on the Epitonic band page) from Texas.  Indie pop.  

3 Away by Pretty Girls Make Graves 88 BPM
From Seattle, sort of hardish indie pop.  Either named after the song from the Smiths or from a line from Dharma Bums by Kerouac.  I'm hoping for the latter. They are classified as punk, but they are way too pop, especially the vocals, to count as punk for me.

Righteous Black by Gauntlet Hair 90 BPM
These guys are from Colorado.  Indie rock.  This is pretty crunchy, powerful.  If you like running to stuff with a bit of an edge this track is for you. 

Parentheses by The Antlers 90 BPM
This sounds like Bronski Beat, at least the voice. If you haven't listened to Bronski Beat since the 80s go and listen to them again.  Smalltown Boy sounds like it just came out.  Well The Antlers have that dreaming aching feeling too, but with a more rock guitar sound. They are from Brooklyn. 

Cheenese by Pompeya 92 BPM
Pompeya are from Russia, but sound really tropical.  Its there second song I am recommending.  This track is super well constructed, smooth, easy to move too. 

Friday, 14 September 2012

I think we should run

Here's a sweet, dark, little pop folk song for you from Daughter. Daughter is Elena Tonra who is from North London. The song is called Run. I'm getting the BPM at just exactly 90. The first video is her singing, she's so adorable. Its not the whole song though, so there is a second video with the whole song.




Friday, 24 August 2012

6 Free Running Songs for August 2012

Its that time again, time for some freely downloadable running music from Epitonic.To download the song, click on the name of the song.  The band name links to the Epitonic page about the band.  They all are close to 90 BPM so work for a 180 SPM (strides per minute) run.  Just in case this isn't obvious why, 90x2=180 and honestly I can't really even tell the difference, between a song MixMeister classifies as 90 or 180.  

Cry for Judas by The Mountain Goats  91 BPM
Clever indie folk rock, melodic and I don't know what's the word for the opposite of annoying?  The Mountain Goats are that. They are also are American.  

90 by Pompeya 90 BPM
Summery indie pop from these Moscowites!  I didn't know it gets this hot in Moscow. Very fluid pretty pop.  Plus the name of the song just has to be a reference to the BPM, no? Anything that takes BPM seriously like this is worth a listen.  

Dear Believer (Timmy The Terror Remix) by Edward Sharpe & The Magnetic Zeros 92 BPM
Indie folk from Los Angeles. I like the lyrics "reaching for heaven", well isn't that what running is all about?  

Afternoons by Papier Tigre 92 BPM
Frenchies, Epitonic describe them as danceable despite their brooding, mathy aggression. I like this sound a lot. This is my favourite song on this list.

Séance On A Wet Afternoon by Girls Names 89 BPM
These guys are from Northern Ireland, which to me makes more sense to call Irish than British. They are noisy pop.  

Pure Imagination (Epitonic saki Sessions) by Faux Fix 179 BPM
This is a cover of the song from Charlie and the Chocolate Factory.  I love that song, so this cover just totally gets me. I don't like covers that sound like the originals, what's the point, but they have taken the basic melody and text and done something really different. American.

Not enough free running music for you?  Click on the free download label below and see all my posts with free music.   




Friday, 17 August 2012

Sweet


I've fallen down the 8-bit rabbit hole. It all started with my post on Uoki-Toki and now several days later I have listened to nothing else.  First off I just love the sound, second the bands are from all over the place.  Uoki-Toki are Russian, today's suggestion, Sulumi, is Chinese.  But anther big reason is that tons of this shit is around 90 BPM.  Rap music is also very often at 90, but I just don't usually like it, its too self-referential and well stupid, so I am so happy to find an amazing electronic genre that seems to consistently clock in at 90 BPM or there about.  I can't find this track, Sweetly, on YouTube.  Its available at Amazon USUKFRDEJP or follow the link below for a 30 second sample on last.fm.  I'm getting the BPM at 92 using the Tap for BPM tool (so works for a 180 Steps Per Minute run).


Tuesday, 14 August 2012

Nerd

Today I'm recommending 3 tunes from Uoki-Toki. The genre is 8-bit, being a computer scientist, I love the name of this genre.  It's also called chiptune. These 3 tracks sound electronic, with pop elements but very crunchy. No vocals. All  three are available for free download on last.fm. Also after some help from Google, I found out they are Russian. First Russian music for me.


First off Digital Love with a perfect BPM of 90. It's my current favourite of the three. Click ->here<- to download this track.




Next I <3 U with a BPM of 89. Click ->here<- to download.




And finally Simple Theory also with a BPM of 89. Click ->here<- to download.

Monday, 13 August 2012

Reward

Here's a track from a band I LOVE Autechre.  Their album Oversteps might be my favourite album of all time.  Well if I was stranded on a desert island and could only have one album it would be, without a moment of hesitation or doubt, Oversteps that I'd pick. If you haven't heard of them, they are very experimental, intelligent, ambient electro. I have run to quite a few of their tracks, but although MixMeister, identifies the BPM at something good for running, the beat wasn't strong in a way that kept my feet going at that pace. The music didn't get in the way, but it didn't help to run with a good cadence either.

But this track, rew(1), from their latest release, Move Of Ten, really does have a steady beat.  Its a little long and a little repetitive perhaps, at least in comparison to their other stuff, but it is a great track to run to.  The BPM is 93, so it might be a little on the fast side for some, but I like the 90-95 range.


Sunday, 29 July 2012

Forget Who You Are

The last few songs have been new releases, but this one Utopia by Goldfrapp is an oldie, released back in 2000.  Still I am sticking to the recent theme of electronic music with female-vocals.  This track has a BPM of 91, so perfect for a 180 SPM run.

Friday, 27 July 2012

Heaven Sent

In a previous post (here) I recommended a song by the German band Monocular.  I was super excited when a month or so ago they released a new album, Pine Trees.  Pine Trees is probably as good as Somewhere On The Line, but since I was expecting it to be as good, it didn't blow my mind in quite the same way.


The track, The Street I Found, from the new album has a BPM of 92 and is very runnable. Even the lyrics of the chorus are very nice for running, "The Street I found was heaven sent". The song isn't on YouTube, or anywhere else I can find, but you can  listen to the first 30 seconds on Amazon, USA, FR, DE, UK, JP.  I like Monocular so much its hard for me to imagine that everyone wouldn't be moved by this, so just go buy it.  In fact buy the whole album.  







Wednesday, 25 July 2012

Stop Thinking Start Running

Here's a sweet little track from German Pea Sized.  Its electronia with female vocals.  The sound is sparse and as far as the lyrics go, they seem to be taking themselves or life a bit too seriously, or maybe its just that English isn't her native language, her voice is lovely though.  Also they let you download all their music for free or on a donation basis, which is cool.  To download this track, Stop Thinking, click here.  The BPM is 91 so perfect for a 180 strides per minute run.

Sunday, 22 July 2012

Strong Bones

I'm on holiday, I wrote this post before leaving and am testing the schedule function of blogger.  So it worked.

Here's two songs from a band I recently started listening to, Rubyrough or Ruby Rough?  I'd classify them as down-tempo electronica with female vocals. I think I discovered them when last.fm made a similar playlist while I was listening to Monocular or Portishead.  The thing I like a lot about them too is that the album is really diverse, the songs don't sound alike. The singer is an American the music by a German. They are based in Berlin.


The first track, Skeletons, clocks in at 91BPM.  The video is awesome.




The second one is Ruby Red Glasses with a BPM of 89.  You can listen to a 30 second sample of the track here.  

Thursday, 19 July 2012

6 Free Running Songs for July 2012

At the end of June I bought an apartment and since spent every spare minute tearing down wallpaper (wallpaper is evil people), painting, going to Ikea, putting up blinds, curtains, shelves and lots more. I am exhausted and this blog has suffered.  I am leaving on a two week, Internet free holiday this weekend, and I don't want to let July go by without at least one post.  So here's 6 free running songs for July to tide you over.  I promise in August and September to post a lot, I actually have a bunch of songs backed-up that I want you all to know about.

As usual all songs are available on Epitonic for free and legal download.  To download the song, click on the name of the song.  The band name links to the Epitonic page about the band.  They all are close to 90 BPM so work for a 180 SPM (strides per minute) run.  

Angels by The xx 91 BPM
British indie pop, catchy enough to be a hit, real enough for me to like it.

Sinful Nature (Anika with BestMate Remix) by Bear In Heaven 90 BPM
Booklyn indie pop / electronica.  According to last.fm, "the sound of the band incorporates influences from psychedelic music, electronic music and krautrock."

Love (Epitonic saki Sessions) by Secret Colours 91 BPM
From Chicago, Secret Colours,  sounds like an American version of Ride to me.  Garage rock.

Baze by The-Drum 90 BPM
Again from Chicago, The-Drum play and ambient electronic This is my favourite track on the list.

Ghostsong by Daniel Knox 91 BPM
Chicago singer songwriter with a carbaret twist, would sound nice on a mix tape with some Shayer James and Dresden Dolls.

Ex-Dreams by The Men 91 BPM
Booklyn indie rock, very good high-energy fast-sounding runnable track.

Friday, 29 June 2012

Stronger Yet

Here's a track from those Canadian indie rockers, Metric, from their brand new album Synthetica. I'm just on my first listen, but it feel more pop and less rock than than their previous releases, especially this track Clone, with its almost perfect 91 BPM runnable beat.


Thursday, 21 June 2012

6 Free Running Songs for June 2012

Time for another 6 free running songs post.  As usual all songs are available on Epitonic for free and legal download.  To download the song, click on the name of the song.  The band name links to the Epitonic page about the band.  They all are close to 90 BPM so work for a 180 SPM (strides per minute) run.  


City of Electric Light by Chad VanGallen 91 BPM
Canadian folk / singer-songwriter with pop elements, lots of melody and smarts.

1330 Oak 1995 by Kind Of Like Spitting 90 BPM
Portland's Kind of Like Spitting don't get my attention for their band name, ick, but don't be put off, this is a very decent little indie rock song, with a nice strong run-able beat.

No Language by Owen 88 BPM
This track by American singer-songwriter Owen has really odd lyrics, I can't quite decide what I think of them, but the tune is good.  The song is very well constructed. 

Sinful Nature (Anika with BestMate Remix) by Bear In Heaven 90 BPM
I just discovered this track from Brooklyn based Bear In Heaven on Epitonic, and I LOVE it; rock, with some pop hooks, nice lyrics. 

How To Be Perfect Men by Songs: Ohia 90 BPM
America singer songwriter.  This is a really old song, came out in 1999 on the Axxess & Ace album.  I downloaded this song and Lioness from Epitonic way back then, and loved them both, so much I immediately ordered several Song: Ohia albums.  To be honest I never got completely into this band, all the songs sounded too much the same to me. This is a great song though, sound is great, good lyrics.  


Copper by Shellac  92 BPM
American indie rock, but sort of hard, almost metal...  they're literally singing about chemistry, the geek in me LOVES this!







Monday, 18 June 2012

Get Ready For the Race

Here's a sweet little pop song from Havergal.  I think its officially pop, but almost sounds almost singer-songwriter to me.  Even though with a BPM of 87 this song is a little on the slow side for a 180 SPM run, I had to include it, what with the title and all, Lungs For the Race. Oh and its a free download on Epitonic, just click here to start downloading.


Wednesday, 13 June 2012

Need a DJ for your run?

Just a quick heads up on a running dj app for those who own Android phones.


It sounds very interesting. It can detect the BPM of songs on your phone, and then while you're working out it detects your SPM using the phone's accelerometers (the same way a pedometer app works). Then it plays the songs whose BPM match your current SPM.  I have an iPhone so can't test this, but I have been seriously thinking of getting an Android phone and if I do I'll definitely have a closer look. The reviews look quite mixed, either it works and people love it or it just doesn't work at all. Just one final thought, in a way its doing things the wrong way round, its matching music to the SPM when what I want use music to help me keep SPM in a target range. Still I am very interested and think anything that takes SPM this seriously is worth some attention!

Thursday, 7 June 2012

99% Radical

The last few days I've been listing to the album Peace Not War Vol. 2. I got volume 1 back around the time it came out, not long after the start of the 2002 US war on Afghanistan.  I just discovered that there is a second volume because I also just discovered Bill Hicks, and one of the songs on the album samples some of his stuff. Bill Hicks was a hilarious stand up comedian, go listen if you don't know him. Anyway using my tap for beats per minute tool, I found that quite a few of the tracks on the Peace Not War album are good for running.  The following are all close to 90BPM (88-92).

Disclaimer : This is protest music at its finest, so warning it's political, and some of the videos show quite violent war scenes. Might be offensive to some, although if you've got this far then I think we're safe.



Starship Trooper by The Herd





On The Face Of It by The Evens





True Nature by Jane's Addition





Counter War Terrorism by Train Of Thought





What Would You Do by Paris





The Last Trumpet (feat Lateef) by Lyrics Born and Lateef
I have posted this song before, here, but since its on this album here it is again.



Monday, 4 June 2012

Hip Freak

If you want to listen to all the recommendations from last month, check out this playlist on Spotify. Also I just noticed that Epitonic have put up the AlunaGeorge's track, that I recommend in the post My Every Move.  Click here to start the free and legal download.

So today's recommendation is for a piece by Zoë Keating called Exurgency.

Zoë is a cellist, that uses electronic sampling to make a sort of experimental music, that sounds classical but also with some structures you'd expect in electronic dance music. I am a total sucker for anything with a cello, well except straight up classical music. I discovered her, though being a big fan of Rasputina (who's already appeared on this blog here) and she also played on Amanda Palmer's album Who Killed Amanda Palmer.  I LOVE LOVE LOVE Amanda Palmer.   So Zoë is one hip cello freak woman!

Exurgency has a BPM  of 91, so good for a 180 SPM run.  

Friday, 1 June 2012

Go Read This

I just read Jason Robillard's post on stride length being the 'most important element of good form'. Go read it here.  Basically stride length and cadence are about the same thing, and he talks about the 180 SPM and how to find your own personalised perfect cadence. Also if you haven't read anything by Jason, well you're in for a treat.  I just love the his badass attitude authentic voice. He's literally one of my favourite people on the web.

I'll put a song up soon.

Friday, 25 May 2012

Double Dose

Its been 6 months now that I've keep up my monthly '6 free running songs' post. So to celebrate this milestone this post is a list of more free songs from artists that have appeared on those posts. So if there was something you liked, maybe they'll be something here you like.

As usual the song title appears first and clicking on it will download the song from Epitonic.  Next the band name links to the Epitonic page about the band.  Then there's the BPM of each song, all are around 90 BPM which works for a 180 SPM run.  And finally just a word about the genre, which links to all my blog posts with this genre.

Why not have a look at the other free download posts click here.

Monday, 21 May 2012

Evolved

Röyksopp are from Norway.  I love Norway.  Well I have never actually been there, but if the opportunity can up I'd move there for ever after. I'm a bit impulsive like that, especially about moving countries. I've always had a thing for Norway, but what really made me love Norway in a concrete way was the reaction that followed the horrific attack last July by Anders Behring Breivik.  He was hoping that his violence would result in a crack down on immigration and a sharp turn to the right.  BUT the reaction of the prime minister Jens Stoltenberg was that what Norway needed was "more democracy, more openness, but not naivety".  It seemed his people were behind him on this.  This was in such stark contrast to the reaction in the US following the 2011 terrorist attack there, and the (for me) sickening street celebrations that broke out all over the US after the announcement of Bin Laden's death.  I wish I was Norwegian.   I wish we were all Norwegian.


OK so back to the music. This track Vision One by Röyksopp features Norwegian singer Anneli Drecker.  I just love the squeaky sound in this song. It tickles!  The BPM is 92, so a bit fast, but still works for a 180 SPM run.  

Friday, 11 May 2012

6 Free Running Songs for May 2012

Time for another 6 free running songs post.  As usual all songs are available on Epitonic for free and legal download.  To download the song, click on the name of the song.  The band name links to the Epitonic page about the band.  They all are close to 90 BPM so work for a 180 SPM (strides per minute) run.  


The end of this month I am moving out of the apartment that I lived in with future ex-husband for over 6 years.  Its the longest I have ever lived in one place. Although we've been living apart since Christmas, this move, into an apartment I am buying, feels really definitive. Its the right thing to do, but it still leaves me feeling sad and a bit lost.  The songs this month sort of reflect this, they are a bit melancholic but soothing, that's where I am at.


Oh and everything this month is American.  I like to have things be a bit more international, but somehow that didn't work out this month.


Sea of Miss by Nate Ashley 89 BPM

Dreamy indie folk from pacific north-westerner Nate Ashley.  The download is just over 2mins long and at first I thought the free download version was cut off, but the one on sale at Amazon is the same length.  This song sounds slow and chilled but don't be fooled the tempo is perfect for running. 

Towers by Bon Iver 92 BPM
Again Indie folk.  According to last.fm, Bon Iver is a play on the French phrase 'bon hiver' meaning good winter.

Blue Escape by Willis Earl Beal 88 BPM
This falls under blues, not a genre I am a usual fan of.  Somehow this track works for me anyway.  Willis has a raspy voice and the sound is quite minimal.  There is some kind of back story of him being homeless while he wrote or maybe even recorded this album, the release of which sort of propelled him into the limelight. The lyrics are quite poetic.

Exit the Mine by Baths 89 BPM
Lo-fi indie pop.  A sweet, but a little repetitive, tune from Los Angelian Baths.

Sick Days by Yourself and the Air  91 BPM
Indie pop again.  Yourself and the Air are from Chicago.

Mirando by RATATAT 89 BPM
Taking it up a notch or two, Ratatat can't quite decide if they are indie-rock or electronic. There are no vocals, but this track stays interesting over its not quite 4 minutes.  It has high energy sound that'll put you in the mood for a run. Ratatat are from Brooklyn. 

Thursday, 10 May 2012

I Know I Was Born

After what feels like weeks of endless rain today it is sunny and warm, almost summer time weather.  So to celebrate here's a hot track from Crystal Fighters, In The Summer.  Crystal Fighters are from Spain and they're my first Spanish band on the blog and also in life. What's weird is that my parents live in Spain, as for while did my hip little brother and his hip wife, so I really should know some cool stuff from Spain.

I'm getting the BPM to be 90 using tap for BPM, so this is perfect song to get some 180 SPM summer runs in.  Time to enjoy the summer!

Monday, 7 May 2012

Life Is Too Short to Be Unhappy

I heard this song on the radio a long time ago and it summed up so accurately how I was feeling about my relationship at that time that it stuck in my head. I tried to track it down, but couldn't remember the lyrics exactly enough to google them, and didn't know the title or artist.  Then a week or so ago I was browsing on jog.fm looking for good songs, when I came across That Old Pair of Jeans by Fatboy Slim.  I don't listen to Fatboy Slim in an active way, but have always really liked stuff of his I heard, so I decided to listen to the track. And viola! the song I had been looking for for so long.

Its exactly 90 BPM so perfect for a 180 SPM (strides per minute) run.  Also after watching this video about 30 times I am wondering if hula hooping could be a good cross training workout?    Looks like it works the core and overall stability.  I am dying to try it!  I wonder if there's an optimal SPM (spins per minute) for that?

Saturday, 5 May 2012

Open Your Eyes

Electrify by the Beastie Boys.  BPM of the original version is 90, this mix comes in just a bit below that, 88 or so.  Great track and beautiful video. RIP Adam Yauch.


El7

Friday, 4 May 2012

Catch-up April 2012

Here is the catch-up list for March on Spotify, Run To The Beat April 2012 180BPM. 




My absolute favourite of last month is the track Beautiful by Monocular. I've been listening to it, and the whole album, Somewhere on the Line, so much that I am already a Monocular top listener on last.fm!

Thursday, 26 April 2012

Meet You in the Sky

I am not really sure what genre Buzzin' In My Brain by Alū falls into. I think its officially singer-songwriter, but has too strong of an electronic/goth edge for that to be an accurate description. I call this freak.  The BPM is 89 and the song has a really strong beat so good to run to.  I think if she ran, she wouldn't need that lobotomy.  Run your crazy out!


Tuesday, 17 April 2012

6 Free Running Songs for April 2012

Here's the March 6 free running songs post.  These songs are all available on Epitonic for free and legal download.  To download the song, click on the name of the song.  The band name links to the Epitonic page about the band.  They all are close to 90 BPM so work for a 180 SPM (strides per minute) run.


3:13 by Ogurusu Norihide 91 BPM
Japanese hipsters creating experimental 'laptop folk' and it really does sound Japanese to me. I can see the cherry blossoms.  This song will do its best to put you in a good mood.


Fallout by Neon Indian 90 BPM
Neon Indian is the solo project of Alan Paloma who has his roots in Mexico, lives in Texas, but recorded this in Helsinki, Finland in the winter!  I couldn't help but want to hear what that sounded like. The genre is electronic or synthpop.


Everlasting Beacon Of Light by Zechs Marquise 87 BPM
From Texas as well.  Genre is space rock or funk.


Missile++ by Blonde Redhead 92 BPM
Classic New York indie rockers Blonde Redhead give you this very runnable track. 


Falsified Inspiration by Aficionado 87 BPM
American indie rock.


Stormily Reassuring by Boxeur The Coeur 89 BPM 
Boxeur The Coeur is from Napoli, Italy.  This song sounds a bit too 'pop' the first listen, but it really grew on me.

Monday, 16 April 2012

Running Is Beautiful

Here's a truly gorgeous song: Beautiful by German electro trip-hoppers Monocular (she is singing in English). I can't find a video of it on YouTube, or a track of it on Soundcloud.  But I can listen to it on last.fm, so here's the link play on last.fm. I hope that works since I am not sure if you have to be signed up for and in to last.fm to listen.  Anyway listen to this, then go buy this amazing song. Its BMP is 92 so great for a 180SPM run.



If you want to buy, here's some Amazon links, these aren't affiliate links just putting them here to save you some time, and for anyone having trouble listening on last.fm, since Amazon has a 30 sec sample to whet your appetite.

Amazon.com
Amazon.co.uk
Amazon.fr
Amazon.de

Friday, 13 April 2012

Take The Sun

Diving by Sneaker Pimps, was released in 1999, but I just found it through the last.fm's Spotify app, which creates a playlist of similar songs based on what you are currently listening to, which I have to say works really well, the other songs are really similar.  I'd like to know the algo behind that - I guess if you have a big enough data set such magic is possible.

Diving has a BPM of 87, so its a little slow for a 180 SPM run, but either you are tolerant enough to have a 174SPM song, or you can bump up the BPM with Audacity, see how here.



Tuesday, 10 April 2012

Before It's Too Soon

Here's a dreamy electronic track from the French music duo Air: Once upon a time.  You can click here to start a free download of the song, or here to go to their Epitonic page.  It has a perfect 90 BPM for a 180 SPM run.  Not too sure about their advice 'don't try to run after time',  I know we all do that, PRs are the best!


Monday, 9 April 2012

Take Control of the BPM


Today's post is a long one, but I really hope that it is useful to you.  I am going to show you how to take a song and change it's BPM.  The first time you do this it will feel like a lot of work, but after you have installed the right tools and know how to do this, it only takes a minute or two to change the BPM of a song and you will be master of your running playlist. But you have to promise to still read my blog!

First off I am going to assume you have read my blog post, Intro to BMP, and already have MixMeister BPM Analyzer installed.

So lets say you have a song that you feel just makes you want to run, an anthem to your self expression through running, but it just isn't the right BPM. For me Galvanize by The Chemical Brother is this song and I was well inspired by this video featuring some italian Vibram FiveFingers wearers.


Using our half, or 90 BPM, works as good as 180, it is way to fast at 104 BPM. So in this post I am going to show you how to use a super and free tool called Audacity to slow down the BPM to 90.

Click here to go to Audacity's home page. Right in the middle of the page you should see the download links.


I clicked on the first link, since I have Windows, and I don't have the newest version of Audacity, the 2.0.0, which was released 13.03.2012. Once you've downloaded the file, double click on it to install Audacity. I then clicked yes to everything without reading anything, like any other normal software user. Just so you see the irony here I am a software developer who once spend several months designing an installer for our software...

The installer will automatically launch Audacity for you, so you should see a window like this.


Now grab the audio file containing the track you want to change. I have my music in mp3s, but Audacity can handle other formats, check here to see if you're covered.  So to load my file I go to the File menu and select Open, then browse to the folder containing my file.




Then go to the Effect menu and select Change Tempo.  This will open up the following dialog box.




In the Beats per minute: Textboxes type in the from and to BPM.  For me its 107 and 90. Audacity automatically fills in the percent change.


Then hit OK.  Finally you have to export the song into a new file. Go to the File menu and select Export... you will be prompted to choose a file name and location.  Don't choose the same file name and location or you'll write over the original. You will then have a chance to edit the meta data, I just click OK on this dialog.


If you choose to save it as an mp3 you will get this dialog.  Don't worry this only happens the first time.


Audacity, due to patent constrictions is not allowed to ship this dll (a software file that provides some functions), so you have to install it.  The Audacity wiki has a page, here, to explain how to do this. -  in fact you'll get taken to that page, to the right section even (they detect your OS), if you click on the Download button.  If you are a Windows user here's the essential info (copied from the Audacity wiki page)

  1. Download an unzipped copy of the required lame_enc.dll here
     Left-click this link, do not right-click
  2. Do not open this file, but save it to your computer. As you will be using this .dll file directly for encoding it is recommended to save it into your Audacity installation folder. This is normally at C:\Program Files\Audacity. For me it is C:\Program Files (x86)\Audacity.  

Just to be sure this worked I ran the new file through MixMeister BPM Analyzer.  And well it says my file is 87.48 BPM.  That's fine, in range, but I tried again, using Audacity, going for a target 92 and also 93 BPM. The 92 ended up at 89.42 and the 93 at 90.39.  I choose the 90.39 version, since it changed the original song by a lesser amount.  Don't ask me why this didn't work exactly, I think that the BPM detection isn't perfect.  It's always a good idea to double check the BPM using a tap for BPM tool.  I have done this for over a hundred songs and usual it works the first time, and its only occasionally that I have to tweak a song like this.  Anyway if you are curious to hear what the result sounds like here's a short sample.



One final thing to discuss is the ranges of BPM that can be changed. If I have a song that is 130 BPM or above I up it to 180.  Some songs sound too fast, but most, and pretty much everything over 150, sounds good.  Going down is harder, I usually put the limit at 100, but made an exception here at 104. Stuff less than 90, well I usually try taking songs over 70 to 90. You may notice that a lot of songs are in the 110 to 130 range, which is a great BPM to dance to, but usually don't sound good after tempo changes.  Still I was able to create a running playlist with almost all my favourite songs using Audacity.  I hope you can now too.

Friday, 6 April 2012

Introverted, Complex and Experimental

Wikipedia says post-punk is a genre that 'retains its root in the punk movement but is more introverted, complex and experimental'.  So here's two songs that fall into the post-puck genre for all the complex introverts out there to experiment with.  Both the tracks are available for free download at Epitonic.  Click on the song name to download, or the band name to go to their page on Epitonic, so you and listen first and read up a bit on the band. To be honest I don't listen to this style of music much in normal life, but I do while running/biking/gym-ing and these two songs aren't quite as hardcore as other post-punk songs.

Waiting (Too Late) by Colisem with a 89 BPM



Plastic Bag by Evergreen at 87 BPM