As Elle Woods says in the iconic early Y2K comedy, Legally Blonde, "Exercise gives you endorphins. Endorphins make you happy." Well so does playing your music really loud with a tempo to wake you up. You really don't need that second, or third, (or fourth... no shame) cup of coffee. I promise. And if you're suffering from that holiday hangover — like a social, family overload, "Did I spend too much money on gifts?" hangover — then don't sulk in this current lack of sunlight with sad PNW mountain music that's all too familiar around here. . . crank up the dance music, and teleport to Miami in the '90s. Or just a really good dance party... or overpriced cycle class.
Here's a plethora of songs that will wake you up and keep you movin' and groovin' into the New Year (aka make your deadlines and show up to your IRL meetings on time) with total motivation domination.
For the Morning - Sleepy But Rise and Shine:
"II Pleure (At The Turn Of The Century)" - Art of Noise
The English avant-garde synth-pop group known as Art of Noise always brings that dreamy ethereal energy. Mixed with Powerpuff Girl drums and computer-generated voices — this, at first gradual, then fast-paced 8-minute soundscape creates a total uplifting oasis to get all your senses ready for the day. It's the opening track to its 1999 album, "The Seduction Of Claude Debussy." What a name. It also has a totally out-of-the-blue vocal narration by Anthony Hopkins. Pretty wild.
"Pulse (v.1)" - LCD Soundsystem
I recently deep-dove into LCD Soundsystem after watching the 2022 documentary film, "Meet Me In The Bathroom." I had no idea it was just some guy in the early 2000s New York underground rock scene who ultimately couldn't work with anyone successfully so he started his own name; LCD Soundsystem. Then he actually had to form a band last minute before his first gig, made up of a combination of friends and other sound engineers he knew. I think James Murphey is a genius and this track off his 2017 album, "The American Dream" is a perfect duque from your alarm clock into your morning rituals. 13:42 minutes.
For the Afternoon Crash - Come On You Can Do It:
"Lazy (feat. David Byrne)" - X-Press 2, David Byrne
I think I was just on a Talking Heads radio on Spotify one day and this came on. I'm like, "Why am I hearing David Byrne's voice on an electro track after hearing him on Rei Momo?" Quite the difference! This collab with English electronic dance music duo X-Press 2, is now a staple for my nsst nsst lineup and Byrne's lyrics really resonate with me. I feel like he really does mean it when he says he can be lazy. And naked. 4:15 minutes.
"Contortion" – Sextile
I feel so lucky to have found Sextile. They just want to make you kick something and skip like Billy Elliot. This post-punk, emo-meets-funk, dance/electronic band is based in Los Angeles and selling out every show in L.A. This song will give you a little kick in the pants when you are literally watching the clock and struggling. 3:10 minutes
For the Evening Workout (Before You Crash Again) - I AM FEELING GREAT:
"Marea (we've lost dancing)" - Fred again.., The Blessed Madonna
The song was released on Fred Again's 2021 album "Actual Life," and every time I hear it I think about how we really did lose dancing in the pandemic. The way it flows makes you feel like you're flying. And really hopeful. But kind of sad, so it makes you want to work the bod harder? 4:45 minutes
"I Feel Love - 1979 Disco Club Mix" - DJ Pierre, Chic Loren
All those Studio 54 vibes. But make it alien circus in outer space. Your heart rate will thank you! 9:06 minutes.