Gabes DJ Set 2015-03-19

I got the chance to play the regular Mixology night at Gabe’s in Iowa City, and for the past few weeks I’ve been collecting tracks I wanted to play and fiddling around with a DJ setup for them in Live. I had two impulses — play current and current-ish music that I like, and to collect some of my all-time favorite tracks. I was also mercilessly stealing ideas from other DJs. I grabbed the “The It” tracks (actually Larry Heard) on Thomas Cox of Pittsburgh Track Authority’s recommendation, and the Boards of Canada remix I heard in a mix by Aidan O’Doherty.

But tracks like those by Moodymann, DBX, Basic Channel, and DJ Pierre are ones that everyone played fifteen or twenty years ago, and among the first that I got to recognize when other DJs played them. The DJ I opened for, RAfrika wasn’t even born when some of those tracks came out. But I figure if they worked in 1996, they’ll work now and the kids dancing will never have heard them.

One track that always gets me: Patrice Rushen “Haven’t You Heard?” Larry Levan did the edit, but a lot of people first heard its musical DNA in the Daddy’s Favorite track “I Feel Good Things For You.” Always like playing the original of something sampled on a big track.

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http://www.cornwarning.com/chaircrusher/Chaircrusher-2015-03-19-GabesDJSet.mp3
Boards of Canada Olson(Midland Re-Edit)
Virgo Four The Dryer
The Black Madonna Stay
Four Tet Love Cry
Larry Heard Forbidden
Stevie Wonder All I Do (Todd Terje Edit)
Luke Hess Real Life (cv313 Dimensional Space Edit)
Larry Heard Beauty In A Picture
Theo Parrish Cypher Delight
Salsoul Orchestra Ooh I Love It(Love Break)
Omar S Psychotic Photosynthesis
Aphex Twin minipops 67 (1202)[source field mix]
Black Coffee Basu
Moodymann I Can’t Kick This Feeling When It Hits
The It Utopian Dream
Kontext Arctic Spaceship
Moodymann Shades of Jae
DJ 3000 Burough & Beer
Rick Wilhite What Do You See (Rick’s Groove Mix)
The It Somebody Somewhere
Ron Trent Blood & Fire
Luke Hess Transform (Marko Furestenberg Remix)
Black Coffee feat Siphokazi Lo Mhlaba
Concubine Luxend
Black Coffee feat Zonke Garden of Eden
Martyn & Four Tet The Air Between Words
Perkowitz Nectar
Rick Wade Angry Pimp
Dense Pika Colt
John Tejada RUR
Floorplan Confess
Terrence Dixon Dark City Of Hope
Reggie Dokes Once Again(Mornign Factory Edit)
John Tejada Two One
DBX Losing Control
Patrice Rushen Haven’t You Heard(Larry Levan Remix)
Basic Channel Phylyps Track II
DJ Pierre Box Energy
Chaircrusher Plasma
Jeff Mills The Dancer
DJ Slugo DJs On The Low
Chaircrusher Burundi2
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Unreleased Aphex Twin, Warped in Ableton Live

By now, people who care about the music of Richard D. James, aka Aphex Twin, know about how he dumped 175 (and counting) unreleased songs on Soundcloud. Like everything he’s done its a body of work that is at turns beautiful, frustrating, and obtuse. The majority of the tracks seem to be Aphex-esque techno and acid house, which is to say his unique combination of standard drum patterns with melodic flights of fantasy and piss-takes.

I had the idea of DJing with these tracks, and when I say ‘DJ’ I mean ‘arrange and blend tracks in Ableton Live’ — which isn’t proper DJing, according to many. That controversy aside, that is the easiest way for me to work; by not having to worry about synchronization and beat-matching, one is free to concentrate on the arguably more important parts of DJing, which is song selection and sequencing.

What started as a simple project to select some tracks to play in DJ sets turned into an obession, and I ended up ‘warping’ the entire corpus of tracks — 175 in total. There are only 173 on Soundcloud because 2 were withdrawn.

To make use of my warping efforts is unfortunately a 2 stage process, the first being to go download the music files. These are available on Google Drive. You’ll need a Google account of some sort to download them, but you can just download the “Selected Soundcloud works 1985-2015″ folder. https://drive.google.com/folderview?id=0B80j1_axBSvIRWJJMUNvdldmWFk&usp=sharing.

Then, download this zip: http://www.cornwarning.com/xfer/AphexUnreleasedLiveProject.zip. It’s also available in the Google Drive AFX folder as well, in the “Ableton” folder.

There’s a ‘Readme’ file in the project ZIP file explaining how to use the warped files, but the TL;DR instructions are “Unzip the mp3 files, unzip the Project, load the project in Live, and tell Live where to find the mp3s.” It should be self-evident to anyone who regularly uses Ableton Live.

Some observations after working through all those tracks:

1. Tempos are almost all very consistent, making me think that he used accurate clock sources & DAT recordings from very early on. There are a very few with the telltale ‘cassette stretch’ tempo drift.

2. There are several with ‘Sequencer Stop’ pauses where he stops the master clock device, allows the effects to decay, and then restarts the sequence off beat. This blows Ableton Live’s mind. I’ve fixed these as best I can, basically pinning a warp marker on the last beat and then dragging the point where the sequencer restarts to the next measure start.

3. Only a few had ‘intergral’ BPMs, i.e. 130, 140, etc. Meaning that the tempo clock was only accidentally set to an intergral tempo. Or the sequencer device and Ableton Live don’t agree about intergral tempos.

4. A couple of them were unwarpable, and I gave up on those.

5. This set of songs was a torture test for Ableton Live’s automatic warping, and I wasn’t impressed, even by the new 9.2 beta version which supposedly improved automatic warping. It rarely found the downbeat properly, was confused by beatless intros etc. Even though the tracks have a very steady tempo.

This was an interesting project to undertake, and it allowed me to ‘needle’ drop in every track. There’s a lot of impressive tracks in this collection.
afx

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Live @ I Hear IC 2015-02-20

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http://www.cornwarning.com/chaircrusher/Chaircrusher-2015-02-20-Live.mp3

The idea of I Hear IC is to gather people from Iowa City to present brief performances in a local coffee house. Peformances were in the range of 10-20 minutes. Other performers on this night included Jazz singers, an improvisation from two Iranian musicians and a small ensemble improvising a new soundtrack for old cartoons.

In that context I knew that it wasn’t like playing an hour-long techno set; no one would be dancing so the kick drum didn’t need to be in the mix the whole time. As it happened I finally brought it in at around 6 minutes; this goes back to early 90s origins of ambient techno, when producers would do long beatless intros to tracks. The rise of ‘popular’ ambient — with the KLF and the Orb being the most famous proponents — grew out of never actually bringing in the beat. Sonically I think this piece has a bit of the Orb about it.

It’s also an instance of not holding anything back. I went back over projects on my studio machine and plundered them for interesting sounds and loaded them all together in one set where I could mix and match stuff that originally went with much different music. I recorded a lot of sounds from my outboard synthesizers, playing loop clips and tweaking knobs to get some movement. The main repeated pad changes chords but it was accidental — I discovered that the JP6 would change the pitch of sounds when I jacked up cross mod. Which is fun because I was playing a slider; the chords were not exactly in tune.

The basic framework was dictated by a tonal center of C Minor. The bassline is straight 16th notes playing C C Eb Eb. That kind of simplistic sequencing reminds me a bit of early Tangerine Dream.

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Groove, Metastability and Randomness

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http://www.cornwarning.com/chaircrusher/Chaircrusher-TestPercussionGroove.mp3

bazille
This is a recording of two loops playing in Ableton Live. One is a percussion drum rack, the second is the U-He Bazille instrument run through several effects.
This loop plays the same notes, but will never actually play the same one bar sounds twice, for two interlocking reasons.

First, both instruments go through a gate effect, which is adjusted so that the threshold is at the point of metastability, meaning that it spends most of it’s time on the cusp of closing and cutting off the sound.

Second, the Bazille patch uses random LFOs to modulate the levels of two oscillators as they modulate each other. On top of that, each of the two random LFOs is modulating the rate of the other, and the cutoff of a low pass filter through which the resulting signal passes. This accounts for the filtered noise sounds continually changing sound.

In addition, the two MIDI clips driving the sounds are modified by two different groove timings.

So the loop never repeats, and yet it also stays the same. The variety of the loop has musical value — in the same way (but not equal to) a human drummer adds vitality and interest to a repeated drum pattern with micro-variations of timing and dynamics. And the repetition of the loop has musical value, in the way a groove can entrain the listener’s mind.

It’s the wisdom of Heraclitus embodied: “No man ever steps in the same river twice.” It’s the same and not the same. Though I’m neither as wise as Heraclitus nor as musically talented as a significant percentage of humanity.

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Nissan-Sentra and the Tyranny of Rocking Out

This ad has been carpet-bombed on TV, and vexing me for weeks:

The music is Billy Idol’s cover of Tommy James & The Shondells’ hit Mony Mony:

That they used a cover rather than the original is the first thing that pisses me off. My favorite Billy Idol song is “Dancing With Myself” which, while irresistible, is everything I dislike about him. It’s subject is Idol’s narcissistic male sexuality, which is pretty much his entire persona. He has a face that wants punching, and his half-octave vocal range barely qualifies him as a singer.

By contrast the Tommy James’ version is as stupid a bit of garage rock as “Louie Louie” but it is functionally effective. And Tommy James’ send-up of James Brown is so sincerely cartoonish that you can’t get mad at him. A song from 1968 may seem a bit old-timey, but we musical aesthetes need to maintain standards.

More offensive is the commercial’s scenario. Here’s Mr. Young Guy With New Car, a 20-something white man wearing white sunglasses. Either he’s on a methamphetatime jag, or he’s so deliriously happy about how his new Nissan has filled the yawning emptiness at the center of his soul that he can’t help singing.

Mr. White Sunglasses

Mr. White Sunglasses

As Mr. Sunglasses drives around Los Angeles, he cranks his stereo, and interacts with people in other cars and on sidewalks. Since Sunglasses is a consummate narcissistic, he doesn’t make connection with actual people, he connects with stereotypes.

Scary Biker Dudes

Scary Biker Dudes


Since he’s driving around in the objective correlative of White Privilege, he commands those around him to “rock out,” to “party down.” He points at them like a conductor cuing the oboes.
Hipster-esque Black Couple In Convertible

Hipster-esque Black Couple In Convertible


He demands that others share his manic glee, even as he deafens them with his bitchin’ Bose stereo. He knows true joy, through the acquisition of a metal phallic symbol that he’s ramming through traffic. He is the master of all he surveys; other people are only there to reinforce and validate his position at the top of the food chain. He doesn’t ask people if they want to sing along with his crappy Billy Idol song, he assumes that he, his car, and the song are so perfect as to be irresistible.
Unrealistically diverse cute kids on school bus

Unrealistically diverse cute kids on school bus


This is Nissan targeting a specific demographic — young white males — who no longer buy cars the way previous generations did. This group used to be the core of the auto-buying public; their love of ‘hot’ cars began in adolescence and continued to senescence. The young man going into debt to buy a Mustang becomes the retiree trading in his Oldsmobile every other year.
Lumbersexual On A Motorcycle

Lumbersexual On A Motorcycle


Fair dinkum; if your company exists to sell cars, go ahead and sell the living shit out of them. But this advertisement appeals to the most obnoxious, toxic part of Bro culture: Their overweening confidence that they are the people other people wish they were, and that they were born to be leaders. They feel entitled to share their joy at their own primacy in the world. Other people’s concerns — and eardrums — don’t even occur to a Bro. They’re bitchin’, rockin’ dudes and you need to get with the program or get out of the way.

And that’s why I hate this ad.

Posted in advertisement, tv | Tagged , , | 3 Comments

Olive Kitteridge Music & the synchronicity of chord changes

The new HBO series “Olive Kitteredge” is great television, and the music, composed by Carter Burwell provides a lot of the moody atmosphere for the show.:

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But I was sure that I’d heard the main theme music before, or something very similar to it. It nagged me all day and then I remembered: The song “Paradise Circus” by Massive Attack, used for the theme of the British crime drama “Luther.”

This is also, in the form of a Gui Borrato remix, used in a 2011 car commercial in the United States.

This is a really simple chord progression:
F minor, A flat Major, C Major, E minor diminished.
ParadiseCircus

But quite evocative. You can never know for sure whether Burwell had heard the Massive Attack song, and incorporated that core chord sequence, or if he came up with it independently. I’m reminded of the Axis of Awesome’s “40 songs, same chords” performance:

Trailer for “Olive Kitteridge”

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VOLCA JAMMIN

Sometimes you try something and it’s accidentally kinda compelling. The setup was

  • Volca Beats
  • Volca Keys
  • Jupiter 6
  • Meeblip Anode
  • Eventide UltraVerb on one send
  • Audiodamage Dubstation16 on the second send.

This is straight up tracky. It’s live mixing/tweaking. I actually added effects and the anode while recording. There’s minimal EQ-ing on the Volca Keys and Volca Beats.  I did some limiting and EQ on the mix-down and edited out the 16 or so measures where the anode was doing this unpitched farting noise.

Syncing the Volcas to Ableton Live is kind of wonky. It seems to work marginally better if you set the sync mode to pattern. The only way I found to get it tight was to hit the ‘play’ button a few times quickly. If you just hit play once, it always starts out of sync. Somehow resetting the counter to 1:1:0 a few times while Live is playing gets things lined up properly.

http://www.cornwarning.com/chaircrusher/Chaircrusher-2014-10-07.mp3

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Iowa City September Night Noises Free Download.

About a week ago I liked the sounds I was hearing on the back porch of our hose, so I set my Tascam DR-05 out on the porch to capture a few minutes of sound.
nightsky
Then I forgot about it. The next morning I went out and the recorder had turn itself off, but it had captured 3 solid hours of sound. The sound is primarily that of insects, tree frogs, and the occasional bird, combined with the drone of Interstate 80 which is about a half mile away as the crow flies.

I’m going to try and play the whole thing at work tomorrow, because it’s a good way to drown out office noise, and I think living with environmental sound like this — especially when one’s attention is focused, e.g. on refactoring C++ template classes — allows it to go into your brain bypassing conscious critique. Maybe you can try it too. It’s like the Ice Bucket Challenge. Without the bucket, or the ice, and you don’t have to donate money to any worthy cause.

http://www.cornwarning.com/chaircrusher/Chaircrusher-SeptemberNightSounds.mp3

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PHOTO BY RICHARD STAN
http://nightskyevents.com/blog/

Posted in Found Sound, iowa city, Live recordings | Tagged , , , | 4 Comments

Ableton Live — a Different Way to Swing.

I’m doing two posts in one day after months of silence?

This just occured to me; I had to share.

1. Get a clip loaded. MIDI or whatever.
2. Click on the Groove hot-swap icon, and choose any groove:

groovebox

3. Set Timing, Random, and Velocity in the Groove.
4. Set ‘Base’ to 16T.
5. Tweak the quantize control.

groovecontrol

This will give your clips an adjustable swing; about 11% sounds pretty good.

For extra points, you can hack your own groove:
1. Make a clip with 16 16th notes — the actual note doesn’t matter. A closed hi-hat will help you get the groove right.
2. mess with the velocity of notes so that it has some ebb and flow type funk.
3. Apply the triplet swing groove, and hit commit.
4. Drag the midi clip into the groove pool. Your own custom groove!

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Getting a good Korg Volca{Beats,Keys,Bass} AC Power Adapter

I’m sure I’m not the only person who got their new Korg Volca thing home only to discover that the power jack doesn’t fit any of the AC adapters you have laying around. This is annoying. I for one have a box with about 30 different power adapters to check through. But I have found a good, cheap solution.

First off, what you need is this:

  • DC 9V
  • Center Positive
  • 1.7mm connector

According to this guy, Matthew Zipkin A Volca device never consums more than 80mA, so pretty much any 9V AC adapter has enough juice to power multiple Volcas.

The problem is the plug is an uncommon size, 1.7mm. If you want to try splicing something together look for the yellow-tipped plugs. If I recall correctly, old Sony CD Walkmans used the 1.7mm plug. But another solution is this: Adafruit sells 2.1mm to 1.7mm DC jack adapters for $2.50. They also sell a 9VDC Center-positive 1000MA supply for 6.95.

The Adafruit solution is actually cheaper than the AC adapters I just bought on Amazon.com, with higher power output.

You can also power multiple Volcas from a single supply with guitar effect daisy chain cable, if you buy enough 2.1mm to 1.7mm adapters.

adapter

Posted in Music, Music Gear, Synthesizers | Tagged , , , , , , | 10 Comments

KRUI Noise Radio 2014-05-03

This is the last Noise Radio show of the Spring 2014 Semester. After a break, Vince Woolums will be back for the summer, and we aren’t sure what’s up for the fall. As Vince & Mike & I get busy, we’re having trouble finding other guests to help cover Saturday nights. It’s a tough time to have a radio show if you go out Saturday nights.

But anyhow, this show is a bunch of different tracks I’ve found over the past few months, though it’s almost all in the straight-up Techno and House vein, moreso than my other mixes. Enjoy!

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http://www.cornwarning.com/chaircrusher/2014-05-03-Chaircrusher-KRUINoiseRadio.mp3
Mikkel Mayer Oh Jolly Good
TM404 303303303606606606
Dreissk The Rising Tide
Muziq Ritm
Soho Hot Music
Armeria Not The Same (Taneli Rmx)
Mobb Deep Shook Ones Pt. II ( Rennie Foster Mobbin Deep Mix)
Dens & Pika Vomee
Mikkel Mayer Clap Your Hands
Delano Smith Trans
Boo Williams Real Tekno
Mikkel Mayer Rosie
Disco Nihilist Late Nights
Colin McNeal Astounding Science Fiction
DJ Cheeze Afro Fever
Jon Margulies Good Religion (Dub Mix)
Aybee Landing
Boo Williams Joy Ride
Maurice This Is Acid
Davor O. Out Of Reach
Skudge Inversion
Hieroglyphic Being Letters From The Edge
Submission Women Beat Their Men (Cevin’s Peak Hour Dub)
Chaircrusher Aurora
Justin Maxwell The Grind
XAmiga Kermit’s Day Out
Disco Nihilist Money Doesn’t Matter 2 Night
Andrew Duke Geisha (Claude Young RMX)
Randolph Earth 2 God (Mike Banks Remix)
Skudge Surface
Chaircrusher 2014-03-15
Yarinka Calucci Hot
K Larm & J Ranine Over The Space
Basic Channel Phylyps Track 1
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If you’re happy and you know it…

well-beingThe Chicago Tribune posted an article on their website about the ’10 happiest states’ based on a Gallup poll.

The Tribune article lacks any nuance, and reflects the lazy journalist’s unquestioning faith in surveys and statistics. Maybe it should be excused because it’s in the travel section, but still…

After reading the original Gallup article I noticed one glaring problem with this whole idea. The ‘Gallup-Healthways Well-Being Index’ — note that it’s ‘Well-Being’ not happiness — is a zero to 100 score.

Zero isn’t actually defined, though presumably it means “everyone is dead or dying in a blasted, toxic landscape” and 100 means “ideal well-being.” The whole-country index is 66.2, and has oscillated around an average of about 66.5 for the past 5 years.

The highest-scoring state scored 70.4 and the lowest 61.4, meaning to me that the best and worst are actually very close together. Where ‘close’ means the two numbers are close numerically, in a system where the meaning of distance is entirely undefined.

What does this actually mean? You tell me! Would I notice the difference of 2/10th of a something-or-other if I went from Iowa (68.2) to Massachusetts (68.0)? Probably not.

North Dakota’s winning score comes substantially from the increase in jobs and wages due to the boom in the petroleum industry. Just the other day I was reading about the problems arising from the influx of out-of-state workers, rising housing costs, increases in pollution that are happening there. So are they really… err… being weller, or are they just momentarily glad more people have jobs, and in a bit they’ll realize their rural paradise is going to be ruined by high-impact resource extraction?

Bottom line, the happiest people involved in this whole business are Gallup and Healthways, both of whom have something to sell. And, of course, the Tribune, who suckered people into giving page views to a story with exactly zero relevant information.

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KRUI Noise Radio Show 2013-10-26

This week’s mix focuses mostly on 3 new releases: Autechre’s L-system, Estroe’s Comfort And Closure, and FourTet’s Beautiful Rewind.
ComfortAndClosure
Autechre is perhaps the most resolutely inacessible group to ever acquire a dedicated fan base; their music challenges listeners to find a new way to hear music. My thought while I was playing on the radio was that there were drunk people riding around Iowa City last night after the football game wondering what had gone wrong with their radio. I love that, but obviously it is an acquired taste.estroe
Estroe (aka Esther Roozendaal) is a Dutch producer and DJ who has a long association with Eevolute/Eevonext Recordings, Stefan Robbers’ seminal Dutch techno label. This new album is a triumph; she has always been a gifted producer, but Confort and Closure manages to be both a great dance floor and a great listening record.autechre-l-event-12-086928-15cbc4d6 FourTet’s Beautiful Rewind is yet another of his releases that finds him exploring his own sonic world; it’s tangent to popular dance music — a DJ can play his tracks out, some of them to devastating effect — but not contained or limited by it. I also include his remix of Justin Timberlake’s “Suit & Tie”.Four_Tet NAW (Neil Wernick)’s new SUB BUS is a remarkable piece of music. Dub techno has an awful lot of tracks that sound the same. Neil finds something new and dramatic with this release — it’s spiky, chaotic and still funky.
Kid606 has been messing with the bounadaries of popular electronic music for over a decade now, and every album has at least something unexpected about it. The new album Happiness does something really strange in taking House Music and slowing it way down (to below 90 BPM from its customary 120 BPM), and employing sunny, naive major chord melodic material.Meow200_Kid606_Happiness_HIRES There’s a feeling that each track is a jam, though I’m not sure how exactly he’s jamming; the same sounds or notes collide and bounce off copies of each other.

For some reason, Ableton Live did not record the cross fader for this set, which is really odd; either that or I don’t understand the new-fangled way it manages automation. So the track sequencing was live, but I had to go back and re-draw all the cross fades as best I could. So this is a ‘live’ DJ mix only approximately.

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http://www.cornwarning.com/chaircrusher/Chaircrusher-2013-10-26-NoiseRadio.mp3
Keys N Krates Dum Dee Dum
Autechre Lac Lacora
Autech Osla for n
Kid606 Blood Stevia Sex Magic
Kid606 Cute Never Dies
Autechre newbound
Imposter(s) Dead Prez
Imposter(s) Imposter
Justin Timberlake Suit & Tie (FourTet Remix)
Phaeleh Make You Feel
Kelpe Monte Verita? (Kevin Reynolds Remix)
Estroe Unconscious Suppression
Estroe Patiently Awaiting A Miracle
Estroe Comfor In Disguise
Estroe False Identity
Estroe Reaching Closure
Estroe State Of endurance
FourTet Ba Teaches Yoga
Estroe Sustainable Illusion
Estroe Happy Distraction
Estroe Out of My Comfort Zone
Estroe Beat Box Contest
Estroe Cock Sure
NAW Sub Bus
NAW Low Level Transi Movement
FourTet
Buchla
Four Tet Our Navigation
Douster & Gina Turner Hush
Four Tet Kool FM
Four Tet Parallel Jalebi
Parson Texas Crawl
Autechre M39 Diffain
Four Tet Gong
Kid606 Coronado Bay Breezin’
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KRUI Noise Radio 2013-10-12

Song Of September Apples

Song Of September Apples


Another semester, another Noise Radio Show. Comprising mostly tracks I’ve been sent, either by the producer themselves or label promos. Plus several of my own productions. Hope it hangs together for y’all.

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http://www.cornwarning.com/chaircrusher/Chaircrusher-2013-10-12-KRUI-Noise-Radio.mp3
Arthur Russell How We Walk On The Moon (Youth Rerub)
Art Bleek June Gloom
Deflon Got To Give It Up Remix
Kage Luna Twighlight
Mekha Immersion Reshape
Chaircrusher Inner Marshlands
Omar S Be Yourself
Art Bleek Procedure 678
Cerebro Television Sky
Brian Prince The Accretion Disk
Omar S Tardigrade’
Cerebro Peripheral
Omar S Money In The D
Pittsburgh Track Authority Omar’s Here
Chaircrusher Song of September
Bleupulp Panta V2
Chaircrusher Birthday Girl
Cut La Roc Don’t Knock The Roc
Bleupulp Panta V1
Brian Kage Neoblue
Chaircrusher Tosh Der Putz
G-Prod Influence
Chaircrusher Aleppo Chili
Kerr Knoll Water World
Mekha Coma (Emmerrichk Rmx)
Brian Prince Mis Mercury
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KRUI Noise Radio 2013-07-13 DJ Mix

The 2 month gap since my last radio show means that a lot of new music has come out so this set has some ‘new’ stuff that’s a bit older than usual, and advance promos played after their release. No matter.

The two releases that are of particular note to the summer’s mood are http://www.bordercommunity.com/?p=5240 and Boards of Canada’s Tomorrow’s Harvest. This is a new BOC album after a long silence, and I think that it is a brilliant album, though the critical and fan reaction has been muted. This is, I think a result of BOC no longer being a musical surprise. But it stands on it’s own merits, and by the way did anyone say to Mozart “Another bloody symphony, when are you going to come up with something new?” It took me longer to come around to James Holden’s record — on first listen it seems pretty discursive and aimless. But on repeated listen there’s something that gets under my skin. “Blackpool Late Eighties” is a perfect standing wave of dream logic romanticism, using Kraut Rock loopiness to build a mood that takes flight. The musical equivalent of being hypnotized by clouds out a jetliner window.

Estroe’s collaboration with Nuno Dos Santos on Eevonext is interesting for breaking out of the techno mold, “Second Thoughts” is nearly beatless, moody, and uses bass to create a forboding mood. The always excellent FourTet shows up repeatedly, in three radically different tracks, including the trip-hop reimagining of Tori Amos’ “Unspoken.”

Detroit Electro veterans Aux 88 sent me a promo of their new EP, from which I chose the Detroit House track “Blue Love.” My revelatory discovery this summer is the Japanese techno producer Takuya Yamashita, whose track “Daybreak” is an instant classic of the emotive Detroit deep techno style.

Closing out, with a blast of low-fi techno from the last century, Joel Brindfalk’s “Great Dose Of Monotonous Techno”. Released under the name ‘Ü’ (try googling that), it is a time capsule from 1992, both in terms of production technique — Roland TR909, a synth or 2, and effects — but it has a deep connection to the new wave of lo-fi techno revivalists.

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http://www.cornwarning.com/chaircrusher/Chaircrusher-2013-07-13-KRUISet.mp3
FourTet Unspoken
Marginal Style Is A Cage
Boards of Canada Nothing Is Real
Allumettes Wallace
S. Carey Two Angles
Tone Of Arc Lost In The Machine
James Holden Blackpool Late Eighties
Estroe & Nuno Dos Santos Second Thoughts
Deadbeat Jaffa Dub
RX Gibbs Honey Dub
Datalog Sumingoshi II
Chris Gavin Nice View (Martin Ruth RMX)
Datalog Arc
Deabeat Peripheral Artifacts
David Powers Remember The Future
Datalog Gampl
Stingrays Adjust To New Knowledge
Cerebro L System
Nathan Fake The Sky Was Pink (James Holden RMX)
Roska + Jamie George Secret Love
Takuya Yamashita Jupiter
Four Tet Lion
Taho Mon Bala
Aux 88 Blue Love
Rocket #9 Rotunda (FourTet Refix)
Takuya Yamashita Daybreak
Chaircrusher The Man Who Played Himself In The Movie
Stingrays Simplexity
Boards of Canada Cold Earth
Joel Brindfalk Great Dose of Monotonous Techno (excerpt)
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Video Tutorials Seen As Harmful

There’s something that disturbs me about how people share information on the Internet — video. Particularly narrative ‘how-to’ type videos.

1. Low content per time invested — I’m not the fastest reader on earth, but for most videos, every ten minutes of video contains the same amount of information as a written presentation that would take me a minute or two to read.

And that’s not even considering the fact that no one makes a video without putting 2 minutes of useless introductory material at the front of it. Get to the point!

2. Video ties up your computer. I know you can have more than one window open, but in particular tutorials about music software make it difficult. If you have the video playing and your program open the audio output of the video will clash with your software, and you have to flip between windows.

3. I hate giving up control over pacing. If I’m reading something, I can skim through several paragraphs, stop and do something, slowly read through the tough parts, etc. With video, you have pause, and if you’re following a tutorial, you have to switch windows to pause, and end up fiddling with the transport a lot.

4. Laziness. Someone can have a general idea of what they want to do and start recording video, but they don’t have a script. You get some extemporaneous, diffuse description, parenthetical digressions, and plenty of ‘um’ and ‘uh’.

I am much more impressed by someone who WRITES IT DOWN, and then edits what they wrote to keep it focused and clear. It may well be that there are true artists of the instructional video in the world, but I am tired of people who make videos because they don’t want to put effort into consciously constructing what they want to communicate.

And this is not limited to amateurs. A lot of the professionally produced tutorial videos are no better.

Posted in Music Software, Video | Tagged , | 1 Comment

2013-05-11 KRUI Noise Radio

Shawn_Rudiman,_DEMF_Day_1The only thing the end of a college term means to me now is that the grad students in my office are scarce for a week or two, and we get a break on Noise Radio. But I tried to end the term on a high note, or at least a loud one.

I’ve noticed my tastes, at least for DJing, changing, in that more and more I crave things that are simpler and more straight ahead. I prevailed on my friend Tom Butcher to pull out some of the hard techno tracks he recorded in the 90s, that he’d sent me on a casette tape. I wore that tape out listening to it in my car, and luckily he’d rescued those tracks from DAT at some point. He also provided me with pre-release copies of his new record on Roam Recordings. so I used some of his oldest and newest music.

The irrepressible Shawn Rudiman has been releasing a backlog of his tracks digitally on Detroit Techno Militia. I took several tracks from the 4th volume. I’ve always been a fan of his live shows, and I’m frankly in awe with his ability to go into the studio and crank out so many high quality tracks. I don’t know when he sleeps.

Kataconda (Barry Ryan) is another guy who’s been going nuts putting out killer techno for a long time — he came to Iowa City and played at my ‘Off Seamus’ event concurrent with the 2002 SEAMUS conference for Electro-Acoustic music.

Bleupulp (aka Maxim Tanguay) is another prolific composer and the guy behind Pertin-nce net label, which has a huge catalog of mostly free, high quality music.

Andy Vaz produces his own intricately layered deep house from his base in Cologne, and Yore has graciously put me on their promo list. Two upcoming releases — a remix EP for his ‘Straight Vacationing’ album, and ‘My Love is 4Ever’ by Librah — are also featured here.

Along with those things, I’ve been trying to keep with my promo e-mails, and what Facebook friends are tipping, which accounts for the vocal pop I include in the mix. So maybe not 100% a techno purist, but hey, good music is good music, and I try to shoehorn in whatever’s making me happy at the moment…

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http://www.cornwarning.com/chaircrusher/Chaircrusher-NoiseRadio-2013-05-11.mp3
Codebase Falling Bricks
Microlife Le Printemps
X09 Nuclear
Lush Sweetness & Light
Phaeleh For You
MS MR Hurricane (CHVRCHES remix)
Codebase Black Mondial
Andy Vaz Detroit In Me (Patrice Scott Remix)
Hapbt Wumpus8
Librah Gravity
Rrose Wedge of Chastity
Fielded Arms of Heaven
Librah My Love Is 4Ever
Ron Trent Pressure Zone
x09 Statika
Garage $ale Bump and Grind (Waze & Oddysey Remix)
Andy Vaz Stubnitz (Memory Foundation Remix)
Arthur Oskan Maximilian
Adam Marshall Chaos
Shawn Rudiman XK7 Dustoff
Kataconda Leaf One
Bleupulp London (Hemptera Mix)
Kataconda Leaf Two
The Translator Prime Time Chords
Shawn Rudiman One More Sometimes
Mount Kimbie Made To Stray
Bleupulp A Few Stories
Shawn Rudiman When To Let Go
Bleupulp The End Is Near
Chaircrusher Le Printemps Du Chien
Lerosa Slavery
X09 Arc
Martyn Oceania
Phaeleh Taking It Back
Flying Lotus Tiny Tortures
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2013-04-20 KRUI Noise Radio

nancygary

New stuff, including several skimmed off the top of the promo avalanch in my inbox. Some older stuff — the Microlife tracks were resurrected by someone from the ashes of MP3.com. In honor of the date, I brought Nancy Reagan in for a cautionary message.

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http://cornwarning.com/chaircrusher/2013-04-20-Chaircrusher-KRUI-NoiseRadio.mp3
Nancy Reagan Diff’rent Strokes Speech (Chaircrusher dub)
Chrome Sparks Marijuana
OOFJ Death Teeth
MicroLife Angel Funk
Shawn Rudiman In Light In Dark
Sister Crayon Cynic
Malandro Casa Rosa
OOFJ Pinstripe Suit
Toro Y Moi Say That
Ian O’Donovan Moonlight Espionage
Ian O’Donovan Firenza
The Black Dog Alien Boys 2
Martyn What is Room 101
Arthur Oskan OmegaMan
Actress Iwaad
Martyn Newspeak
Phoenix If I Ever Feel Better (Todd Edwards Dub Better Remix)
Heiko Lau & Diego Hostettler Chicken Understood
Arthur Oskan Adrift
Microlife Floating City
Lerosa Combat
The Black Dog Broken Mind (Regis Remix)
The Smoke Clears Plumb
Robert Hood Drive (The Age Of Automation)
The Black Dog Cracked
Shawn Rudiman Re-Think Tank
Chris Randall Ripspace
Lando Kal Help Myself (Anthony Shakir Remix)
Lerosa Titanium
Om Addis Abbaba
Shawn Rudiman Umbilicus
Hot Lizard The Theme (Carl Craig Remix)
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Windows 8 and Audio Performance: File History Kills!

I had Ableton Live’s audio get interrupted several times last night. The culprit was a nonsensical ‘warning’ to reattach my ‘file history drive.’

I had never set up File History, and certainly not set it up to write to an external drive. Grrr.

Anyway — turning it off.

Instructions on turning it off here.

I think it’s probably better to keep to a regular schedule of backups, rather than to have some mysterious background process periodically hosing up your audio performance.

And the Windows 7 backup is still available in Windows 8, they just hide it. I’m happy overall with Windows 8, but man they sure can make some strange decisions, and it sure seems like they don’t care one bit about hosing up real time applications like audio production and performance.

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KRUI Noise Radio 2013-03-30

More specifically Techno & House than usual. Featuring new Shawn Rudiman on Detroit Techno Mlitia, new Cephax Acid Crew album Cro Magnox, Kommon+Appleblim, Trus’ Me, and things found trawling through my ITunes collection…

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http://cornwarning.com/chaircrusher/Chaircrusher-20130330-KRUINoiseRadio.mp3
Kommon+Appleblim Silencio
Anika In The City
Trus’ Me Me Tes une Pute
Felix Lenferink First Bouree
Trus’ Me Hindsight
Shawn Rudiman Ghola Idaho
Space Dimension Controller Mercurial Attraction
Thomas Brinkman Xenia 2
Kerri Chandler So It Begins Again (DC10 Mix)
K Wide Road
Analog Cop & Blawan Sickle
Jeff Samuel heb gbz
Version The Brighter Side (Percussive Vocal Mix)
La Funk Mob Ravers Suck Our Sound (Carl Craig Mix)
Jon Margulies Good Religion (Dub Mix)
Touch Sensitve & Annie Lunoe Real Talk
DJ 3000 Sasanian Stomp
Jethro Ain’t No Way
Raw Series #2 B
Estroe Cheapo Cheapa
Calmac Tangerine (Jozo & Can Dub Remix)
Touane Tolousian Duck
Mike Dunn Let It Be House
Kommon & Appleblim Gas Jam
Shawn Rudiman Blinded By The Future
Deadbeat Wolves & Angels
Shawn Rudiman The Last Snow
Kerr Knoll Drone Avionix
The Black Dog Train By The Autobahn (Robert Hood Remix)
Ceephax Acid Crew Flight Of The Condor
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