Mixtape WarsMusic

Mixtape Wars

We’re zooming to the moon this month as Jace Bartet (air-guitar champion, metal-head and mastermind behind chiptune project Prizmatic Spray) takes on Reptar frontman/guitarist Graham Ulicny in an epic space battle. Here are their mixes, inspired by the final frontier.

Jace Bartet’s Space Mixtape


Jace Bartet

1. “Into the Void” – Black Sabbath

Jace Bartet on why he picked the tune: This is what it would sound like if rockets could be powered by weed. Possibly the funkiest true metal song of all time, teleporting the listener to a dimension of pure bangover reality.

Graham Ulicny’s Reaction: I feel like I’m descending into infinite nothingness.

2. “The Number Song” – DJ Shadow

JB: Outside of the science-y countdown near song’s end, this one might seem like a stretch until you note that it also includes a sample of “Orion” by Metallica… THINK ABOUT IT, C’MAWN.

GU: Alien vs. Predator dance off.

3. “Mothership Connection” – Parliament

JB: This song is about a pimp who rides in a spaceship shaped like a Cadillac. Cool.

GU: Anyone who has seen the Henson masterpiece Muppets from Space knows about George Clinton’s space connections. When aliens brought life to Earth eons ago, they also brought Bootsy.

4. “Space Road” – Casiopea

JB: Crank this tune next time you play the Rainbow Road course in Super Mario Kart. The stuff dreams are made of.

GU: This is really great. Harmonized guitar solo rings out beyond the cosmos.

5. “Tiger! Tiger!” – Slough-Feg

JB: Deep space is the dwelling place for the man with name and occupation tattooed on his face.

GU: The name of this band reminds me of an HP Lovecraft monster name. These lyrics are incredible.

6. “Cosmonaut” – At the Drive-In

JB: ATDI preceded this song live with a final message from David Bowie’s Major Tom as he died in space. Rad.

GU: Love this record. A space jam. From what I understand, being a cosmonaut in the Soviet space program was a huge bummer.

7. “Teenagers from Mars” – The Misfits

JB: They traveled through space to give Arizona the business.

GU: Glen Danzig with Misfits patch sewn onto his space-suit. Ambassador to the stars.

8. “Moonage Daydream” – David Bowie

JB: The BBC radio version, almost as heavy and spaced out as Black Sabbath in the middle and end. Love is tough in outer space!


9. “Major Tom” (Cover, original by Peter Schilling) – Shiny Toy Guns

JB: Timeless synth pop that improves on the original. Seductive, unnerving, sparse: all terms I associate with both this song and space.

GU: Poor Tom! So isolated and lonely in his metaphorical space prison. This song is really perfect.

10. “He’s Simple, He’s Dumb, He’s the Pilot” – Grandaddy

JB: Did you love this world, and did this world not love you? Are you giving in? I believe they want you to give in.

GU: Space ballad! I’d say that the epic nature and haunting energy of this song exude space vibes for certainly. This mix is great. Hey, Jace, let’s start a band called SpaceBar. I’ll play light organ, and you play space-aphone.

Graham Ulicny’s Space Mixtape


1. “Spaceship” – Philip Glass

GU: I imagine Carl Sagan spinning this on repeat during the filming ofCosmos.”

JB: A perfect opener to this mix. I suspect that the same amplified astral awareness (outside of the math knowledge) that allowed Penrose and Hawking to prove the existence of black holes also fuels the genuine Philip Glass “thing.”

2. “Stereomission” – Mouse on Mars

GU: What is spacier than German electronic music over Japanese dialogue?

JB: Once the beat kicks in, I picture myself jogging the celestial treadmill rings of Saturn in perfect time. The pervasive Japanese dialogue provides a fine feeling of otherworldliness.

3. Daniel Bell – Flying Saucer

GU: When minimalist techno-loving aliens invade Earth, this song will be the funky apocalypse soundtrack. Daniel Bell is out of this world! (Oops.)

JB: The intergalactic jog continues! Incoming sci-fi warbles force me to dodge death’s rays as I pole-vault the asteroid belt.

4. “Galaxy” – War

GU: Funky-ass space jams for space, about space, in space. “On rocket ship no time to wait. I just want to gravitate.”

JB: Me and War in our turbo-lowrider revved up next to George Clinton at the intersection of Halley’s Comet and a total eclipse, but George blinded us with a flashlight (which also turned the turbo-lowrider into a black hole) and tore off around the corner of Neptune as I got out of the black hole and yelled at George, “Will you let me ride?”

5. “Rendez-Vous 4” – Michel Jarre

GU: In the future this is what all music will sound like. There is a track off this album that is dedicated to a dead astronaut who also played saxophone. RIP Ron McNair.

JB: I don’t want to listen to any other music ever again in my life. I still hear the instrumental, synthesized stabs and washes of Jarre and his ilk as future-music, not retro. Brain-wave patterns at the speed of light.

6. “My Blue Heaven” – Juan Garcia Esquivel

GU: I love Esquivel’s arrangements because they sound like space. In space no one can hear you scream, but they can hear you glissando.

JB: I wish I could separate this one from the uncozy screen union of Steve Martin and Rick Moranis, though I am suddenly inspired to go to the grocery store and choose an especially ripe orange.

7. “Astral Plane” – Modern Lovers

GU: Even space travelers get sexually frustrated—probably a lot more often than the rest of us. Jonathan Richman expresses the feelings of lovesick astronauts.

JB: Sex = space, Jonathan Richman knows the place.

8. “Raaga Asavari” – Pandit Pran Nath

GU: The Voice of Cosmic India is one of my favorite records to listen to when I am feeling out of balance with the cosmos. Look at your hand. Did you know that the essential elements for forming life on Earth were created from a supernova explosion 4.5 billion years ago? Everyone and everything you see is made of stardust. Lovely.

JB: The only time I’ve ever had a trance that approached anything like the one in this audio recording was in the midst of a 13-hour round of Columns for Sega Genesis in 2001. Pandit, I can relate!

9. “I Thought It Was You” – Herbie Hancock

GU: I guess there’s no space theme in this song. The groovy vocoder and synth lines make this song the perfect tune to have space sex to. Space orgy.

JB: Never heard this one before, and, damn, the transition into the first verse pushed a big red button that ejected me to the sun, where I met up with the babe he’s singing about and we danced all night long (on the sun, it’s always night).

10. “Saturn Strobe” – Pantha Du Prince

GU: This guy is creating incredible music right now. Listen to this song and look at high-resolution images of Saturn from the Voyager 2 mission. Saturn is my favorite planet in the solar system.

JB: A relaxing return trip! I could really reflect on all of the sights and sounds from the mix as a whole while listening to this one. Thank you Capt. Grahamjam for a great ride!