This Playlist Will Help You Get Sh*t Done

If you really need to get something done, listen to these sweet, sweet sounds.

Ready to power through that to-do list? Play these albums, stat.

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"Moon Money" by Hot Sugar

Stefan Marolachakis, senior editor, @stefanmymind

When it comes time to work, I need a moody soundtrack that will even make typing up a boring email feel cinematic—so, no vocals allowed. Nick Koenig, who produces music under the name Hot Sugar, travels the world collecting found sounds and stitching them together to create his dreamy, rhythmic soundscapes.

Standout Track: The opener, "There's a Man Waiting at the Bottom of the Stairs," is the perfect kind of mysterious-sounding tune to get the gears turning in my brain. It's got a spooky feel but is also up-tempo enough to get my head nodding.

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"Treats" by Sleigh Bells

Chanel Parks, beauty editor, @chanelinezp

If I'm not listening to Tchaikovsky while plowing through a huge workload, I put on Sleigh Bells for the hard drum hits and razor-sharp guitar licks. I need something rough around the edges to push me, especially if I'm on a tight deadline, and Sleigh Bells's noisy tracks are just what I need to get by. Some people can't listen to songs with words while they work (hey, Stefan), but I'm the opposite, and sometimes I need to a punchy lyric or two to motivate me.

Stand-Out Track: "Crown on the Ground" is essentially about dethroning someone, and it gives me these amped-up feelings that make me want to throw things, but also get the job done, of course. 

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"Vega Intl. Night School" by Neon Indian

Ryan Duffin, assistant photo editor, @ryanduffin

Sometimes I need to dissolve into a work trance fueled by ambient bubbly synths and up-tempo backbeats. This album sparks my creativity through its rather strange pitch shifts and disembodied samples. Who says you can't be productive while dancing?

Stand-Out Track: "Techno Clique," because I definitely make my greatest work when it feels like I'm living in a video game from the '80s.

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"This Island" by Le Tigre

Nicola Dall'Asen, editorial intern, @nicoladallasen

When Kathleen Hanna sings, on any of her projects, I feel like she's yelling directly at me, telling me to be a better version of myself. Le Tigre is the most pop-influenced band she's ever led, so the consistent beats and smoother vocals on this album are far easier to get lost in during the workday than, say, Bikini Kill. And in true Hanna fashion, it's full of political and feminist-as-hell lyrics, a surefire way to spark my energy and creativity.

Stand-Out Track: "TKO" was my gateway to feminist and identity-driven punk music, and the anthemic chant in the chorus will make you want to protest something (or at least get up and out of bed) ASAP.  

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"A Data Learn the Language" by The Mercury Program

Christian Storm, photo director, @cstorm44

I cannot write a single coherent sentence if I'm listening to music with lyrics; I'm way too easily distracted. So when I want to get things done, I go for music that features driving rhythms and engaging melodies.

Stand-Out Track: The album's apex comes at its second to last track, "Gently Turned on Your Head," which gets my brain running full throttle, even if the air drumming I'm doing takes my hands off the keyboard from time to time.

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"Someday Somewhere" by Mura Masa

Chantal Strasburger, assistant editor, @chantagold

As someone who gets easily swept up in lyrics, I need songwriting that isn't too heavy on plot twists and turns. This album by British electronic music producer Alex Crossan is the perfect mix of light, repetitive hooks and seriously catchy beats, so I can plug in and focus on the task at hand.

Stand-Out Track: "Lovesick" is a double-edged sword: it's the kind of song that can take me from nose-to-the-grindstone productivity to a night out with friends. There's a reason it reached number one on Spotify's viral chart: it's damn good.

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"Rumours" by Fleetwood Mac

Rebecca Deczynski, editorial assistant, @rebeccadecz

Few albums have as much of a mythologized history as Rumours, Fleetwood Mac's critically acclaimed 1977 album, which was created during a tumultuous year that pitted virtually every band member against one another in a tangled web of romantic strife, social tension, and general discord that seemed to subside only when they played music together. The unbridled emotions are echoed in the album's intricate harmonies and thunderous crescendos, all of which is anchored by Mick Fleetwood's booming percussion work. The end result is music that urges me to keep pushing toward my goal, whatever it may be. If Fleetwood Mac can make it out of the year from hell with one of the most groundbreaking, influential albums of all time, I can do anything.

Stand-Out Track: In "Dreams," Stevie Nicks weaves poetic lyrics with a driving groove to create a song that's part-melancholic, part-uplifting, and fully motivational.

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"A Seat at the Table" by Solange

Natalia Tyndall, office assistant, @tallylabella

This album has been out for less than two weeks and it's already the only thing I listen to. Solange has made an album that takes you through a roller-coaster of emotions with her lyrics, and even the interludes are amazing. Listening to Solange's sultry voice never fails to uplift me and make my day 10 times better. Even with a generous 21 tracks, I always get to the end wanting more.

Stand-Out Track: "Rise" is the first track on the album, and for good reason. I usually listen to this as I'm walking to work and it always puts me in the right frame of mind.

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