Working on websites means I can sometimes spend many hours sat down staring at a screen yet my type of work ranges from Design, Coding, Writing and Planning so in each case I tend to listen to a different music genre, I look for that genre that helps me either be more productive, aid in my inspiration or change my mood.
To keep music from distracting me, I find very effective to listen to an artist’s full album instead of random songs, since song after song keep the same mood and sound.
I’ll embed the best album of each artist, whenever possible, so that you can bookmark this page and listen to it at any time. If you like the album I recommend you get the high quality sound and some nice headphones. I cannot stress enough how important it is to listen to high quality crisp music (320kbps MP3 or the lossless FLAC version if you have a lot of space) to help you concentrate and enjoy more.
Bonobo – Black Sands (2010)
For starters, Bonobo is usually great for everything:
Music for coding and other deep thinking
For coding and when I need to concentrate I like to listen to instrumental music, preferably to something like Ratatat, Hot Sugar or Tycho, they have really melodic electronic sounds with a nice tempo.
Ratatat – Classics (2006)
Hot Sugar – Moon Money (2012)
Tycho – Dive (2011)
Cinnamon Chasers – A million miles from home (2009)
0l0 – Red Album
Special mention to 0l0 (former Louis Ex) for his music, here’s one of his songs:
A bit more beat
If I need something with a bit more beat I’ll go for smooth deep house / minimal techno. Tracks with a good bass, melodic synths and repetitive sounds help me concentrate the most, such as:
Kollektiv Turmstrasse – Uncivil
Marek Hemmann – Inbetween (2009)
Ludovico Einaudi – Divenire (2006)
Sometimes I’ll go for something way calmer: Contemporary classic, specially piano, and my favorite artist is Ludovico Einaudi:
Hans Zimmer – Interstellar OST (2014)
When I’m having a super productive time I put Hans Zimmer’s soundtracks. Right now I’m into Interstellar OST, it’s a blast, with its loud intense moments it just makes you reach 200% productivity.
Music for designing, writing and other creative work
For design work I can actually listen to lyrics without getting distracted.
Electric Guest – Mondo (2012)
Electric Guest is uplifting, nice and easy to listen to:
The National – High Violet (2010)
One of my favorite bands is The National, Matt’s voice (the singer) is deep and smooth, it transports you somewhere else:
Moby – Play (1999)
And there’s Moby, this guy’s damn talented and his Play album is full of creativity:
Music to act on your mood and make you productive
Sometimes when I’m stressed or in a badass mood I’ll listen to some hip hop, it diverts the stress and anger and helps me focus:
The Notorious B.I.G. – Ready to Die (1994)
Young Buck – Straight Outta Cashville (2004)
LudaCris – Chicken-n-Beer (2003)
South San Gabriel – The Carlton Chronicles (2005)
On the other hand, if I’m really stressed and need to relax, I’ll listen to South San Gabriel’s “The Carlton Chronicles” album, the whole album tells a story about a cat. It’s beautiful, melancholic and intense:
Music to wake up
The Cat Empire – Steal the Light (2013)
It’s a huge feat for a band to record one of the best album of the year after many successful years of great songs. Well, The Cat Empire did it with Steal the Light, an amazingly powerful album you will want to listen again and again:
Arcade Fire – Reflektor (2013)
You should listen to this album without your critique hat on, it’s the sound and not the meaning that matters in Arcade Fire’s latest album. Very well balanced and great to listen with your headphones on:
And finally, there’s some times where I don’t feel like listening to music but there’s noise in the room or outside on the street and I need to concentrate, in those cases I’ll put some White Noise which is a constant and neutral sound.