Tuesday, August 24, 2010

shed - 'the traveler' FREE stream!

thanks again to fact magazine for another free album preview! this time we get to try out the highly-anticipated new album by berlin's multi-faceted dub dreamer shed: the traveler. it's being released on ostgut ton at the end of the month, and is the first 'sophomore' artist-album on the label. i am withholding judgment until i give this a few detailed listens, so join in the fun:

EDIT: looks like it's all gone, sorry folks!

Shed: The Traveller by factmag

Friday, August 20, 2010

weekend eve

hello all: hopefully juho's pleasant little mix has perked some of your antennae. for now, there's tons of stuff to talk about as quick as i can... been on an awkward sleep schedule lately so this message comes to you courtesy of that magical time: 5 o'clock in the morning...

cio love - looks like mnml ssgs has helped out a bit with cio d'or's excellent RA podcast, offering up an extended version (and in higher bit rate!) of cio's set here ... right-click save because it's a direct mp3 file, and check out the tracklist here. do it to it!

tea (and psychic stuff) with perc - UK-based techno producer perc sits down to talk about music and tea. he just produced a monad for stroboscopic artefacts, and i just picked up a few records from his perc trax label... good stuff, i am especially diggin' the recent tracks/remixes by milton bradley and forward strategy group. here's a direct download (right-click + save) of perc's recent set of really weird sounds, with tracklist, for allez-allez.

sex with jimmy edgar - ...well, not really. check out his interview with bodytonic, where he talks about his new music. don't forget: jimmy edgar brings his steamy live set to chicago next month for sonar! here's a recording of a recent set from berghain, again courtesy of allez-allez.

and finally,
this weekend is chock-full of good live music in chicago. take a look at the events listing to the right for the big picture... you might see me at one of these musical get-togethers:
-sts9 will be playing the house of blues tonight, the aragon saturday night, and an intimate acoustic show on sunday to end the weekend. i'm not nearly as big a fan of this band as i used to be, so my expectations are low for these shows...
-autolux, another smilecoldanatomy favorite, will be performing at the bottom lounge tonight (which means i will be leaving the sts9 show early to catch this)
-seth troxler will headline the annual varsity all-stars day party this sunday. the weather forecast is looking favorable for what should be a fun day out under the sun! if you need some motivational reading, check out his lengthy recent interview on ibiza-voice.

listen! party!

Saturday, August 14, 2010

anatomy 03 - juho kahilainen

huzzah - a new addition to the anatomy mix series! this compact set of diverse techno comes to us from finnish dj/producer juho kahilainen.

calling his music 'depressive trance' (jokingly), juho has been DJing since the late 90s, and has a small catalog of dark, melancholy dance cuts to his credit. most recently, and perhaps most notably, are his two excellent EPs from early last year for the then-fledgling experimental techno imprint, prologue: 'prophet without a vision' and 'kuolonkellot'.

i tracked down juho through the internet a few months ago to see if he would be interested in contributing to this mix series and talk about his music. he was game (and happy that his music had reached the other side of the world), but he had something to take care of first: getting married! in response to a series of interview questions i sent him (regarding, among other things: his path to dance music, fellow finnish noise-makers pan(a)sonic, etc), juho sent back a rather long essay... he discusses his past, present, and future, including plans for a full-length album on prologue. to the impatient, scroll to the bottom for the mix. for those who want to know more about juho and his music, take a look at what he has to say:

I come from a small town called Pihtipudas. I was born and raised there - the nearest city was 130 kilometres away. There was not much so called scene there, but a few older guys than me were into electronic music. Luckily the atmosphere in Pihtipudas - although it's very rural Finland - was quite open. One of the first punk bands of Finland came from Pihtipudas in the beginning of the eighties . It might be that this phenomenon still had an effect on people. They knew that music has many shades and weren't laughing to you if you were making weird stuff. I felt I got support from the community. This was very important for a teenager. Obviously Pihtipudas lacked the industrial setting that is essential for techno, but I had it built in my imagination. This might not be authentic, but it was my interpretation.

I was introduced to electronic music by the national radio. A special show hosted by Tapani Ripatti was on the air every Saturday from 1 AM to 6 AM. I was listening to it and recording those shows on cassettes. Ripatti was playing a lot of Finnish stuff and probably that influenced me a lot. I could sort of relate myself better to Finnish tracks even though they were interpretations of something happening outside Finland. Especially Marko Laine's distorted and jacking techno sounded fat on a cassette. Also DUM Records run by Mono Junk was really into something (Disclaimer: No idea where that video is from – I am against this kind of driving).

Mika Vainio's stuff (known as Philus or Ø on Sähkö) didn't hit me right away. I was more a fan of Jimi Tenor, but Tenor kind of pulled me to Sähkö's back catalogue. I was open to interesting music and naturally Panasonic (later Pan Sonic) and Ø were really interesting – more like an antithesis of pop. I bought Ø's album to my little brother because I wasn't sure if I liked it or not. Nowadays I've stolen that album from him.

In 1997 me and my friend arranged a party in Pihtipudas and we asked Jori Hulkkonen to dj there. I was 16 and Jori must have been around 24 or something, but he came and played for three hours. After that it was all about house music. Jori himself claims that he "never was the thing", but I must say that between 1998–2001 he was the best from my point of view. Besides Jori, Tuomas Salmela (aka Phonogenic) and Sasse were making quality house music.

I'm listening music on a relatively wide scale. High Violet by The National, Black Noise by Pantha du Prince, Origin by Villa Nah, Atom / Document by Robert Henke, Dettmann by Marcel Dettmann, Black Telephone of Matter by Mika Vainio, No More Stories Are Told... by Mew, In And Out of Control by The Raveonettes... For me techno and pop go hand in hand. They might be parallel universes, but both exist and don't block each other out. Warping from one universe to another is actually quite nice sometimes.

My three favourite records of all-time... Quite hard to say since some day one record sounds better than the other and vice versa. Today my top-3 of all time looks like this:
1. Drexciya: Black Sea
2. Surgeon: Atol
3. Maurizio: M5

About the debate between digital and vinyl... It doesn't matter what format you are playing if you can get the right feeling and the people sense it too. Personally I prefer vinyl and stick to it. When I see someone playing vinyl I get more out of it than seeing someone staring at her/his laptop. CD-r's are cool for playing your own edits or new pieces here and there. A lot of my friends have gone into digital deejaying, but so far I haven't been even planning to do that. I love to go through my records and pick some of them for my bag for the night. It's part of the deal.

I call my music 'depressive trance' because it's a total opposite of uplifting. 'Depressive trance' also states that I'm not aiming to produce club-bangers for Ibiza or even Berghain. On the other hand I want to step aside from categories. I don't want any labels in my forehead. The music has to reflect me – not a label or a genre or a club. Naturally the techno side of things are in-built, but it's more important to get the idea "he comes from techno" than "this is techno".

My strength and my weakness lies in this thing: the music doesn't pay my mortgage loan. I'm working as a journalist as my day-job and making music as my hobby. I don't have much time to produce new tracks, but every track is important to me. There is no commercial need to compromise.

What I'm about next? I've just finished my debut album for Prologue Music. I guess Tom from Prologue is trying to figure out how to sell it... It's a mixture of techno and pop, but only slightly stirred – not shaken. Techno tracks on the album are real techno tracks and pop is pop. I'm quite sure most people won't get it, but in my world it makes sense.

The other project is my new live-set that I'm building. It will consist of TB-303, TR-606, SH-101, MFB-502 and an fx-unit for some reverb and delay. Very stripped-down hardware-only setup. I might use also some circuit-bend stuff on the side, but the core is always the same. I got a bit bored of Ableton Live and at least this way my live set will sound totally different from laptop-sets.

okay! thanks to juho for sharing his story with us. now, on to the mix. juho had this to say:

"It's not the perfect take, but recorded on one shot. I added my own field recording in the beginning to add some special atmosphere to this mix. All the tracks (except for the first and last) are played straight from vinyl and it was mixed using an Allen&Heath Xone:32 mixer. I added a little bit of compression to the overall sound to keep the volume more stable.

It's all European techno - old and new stuff blend together. I'm a fan of U.S. techno too, but for this mix I wanted to promote this European sound."

01. Thunder – field recording by Juho Kahilainen
02. Marko Fürstenberg: 070120 (A.r.t.less)
03. Schermate: 001B (Schermate)
04. Giorgio Gigli, Obtane & nAX_Acid: The Child That Was Watching The Moon (Zooloft/Aconito LTD)
05. Ellen Allien: MM (Bpitch Control)
06. Peter van Hoesen: Quartz #1 (Time To Express)
07. Samuli Kemppi: Dark Matter (Mote Evolver)
08. Conforce: Intimidation (Meanwhile)
09. Terence Fixmer: Things Are Over (Electric Deluxe)
10. Basic Channel: Q1.1 (Basic Channel)
11. Tron: Kumi Putki (Function)
12. Surgeon: Atol (Downwards)
13. Pehr Henrik Nordgren: Vesipisaroita (On Off / Like Kustannus)

thanks again to juho for the words and for a nice, raw, spontaneous mix of deep, dark, and dubby sounds... and congratulations on his recent marriage! check out his homepage and his myspace for more info and updates. enjoy!

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

wednesday night notes

a few thoughts before i'm off to perform an opening dj set at this week's heartbeats at morseland...

check out nax_acid's abstract archetype for the modyfier mix blog. scroll down a bit for nax's thoughts. it's a patient, meditative blend of techno, ambient, and acoustic sounds. it definitely sounds like he put a lot of thought into this set... respect! andrea has said he's on a bit of a break from producing, but expect some new stuff from his aconito records in a few months...

speaking of thought-provoking sets, check out RA podcast 219, courtesy of german tripping-techno master cio d'or. the mix is an excellent example of what someone can do with "digital dj'ing"... cio takes a bunch of deeeeep, introspective tracks and loops to form this work of art. i've been told it took her two months to create this, and it definitely shows.

after cio melts your brain a wee bit, relax with RA.219 from peverelist. i've grown pretty tired of dubstep, but i still trust peverelist to put out quality, forward-thinking stuff. this is a really nice vinyl mix, featuring some rootsy dub as well as dense percussive sections and some dirrrty tracks. it definitely works as a soundtrack to a day at the beach, cough cough....

looks like amon tobin is going back on tour soon, hopefully to showcase the new album (described as an 'auditory space walk') that has been in the works since at least earlier this year. uniting drum n bass aesthetics with cinematic film score flourishes and transcending both styles, the guy has been creating unique stuff for 15 years. he's also released some free music on his site so go check it out.

onto some quick local news, there's been more announcements surrounding the Sonar Chicago festival, coming up in just a month. a few very interesting off-sonar events have been announced. thursday night will see a dubstep-oriented afterparty at smartbar with faltyDL. saturday, berghain/ostgut ton superstar marcel dettmann will headline the festival's 'closing party' at smartbar. sunday, there will be the hi five mobilee day party at green dolphin street, with anja schneider and and.id celebrating 5 years of operation for the berlin-based label.

that's it for now. i've updated the events list on the right with even more danceable chicago goings-on. looking forward to an excellent transition into fall with tons of good music coming up...

Wednesday, August 4, 2010

doing it to it

more news and interviews:

brian eno on warp records?!
the internet is abuzz over the announcement - on both brian eno's website as well as warp record's website - that brian eno will be 'coming soon on warp records'. the label that sprouted huge releases from artists like aphex twin, boards of canada, and autechre, now appears to be the launching pad for new material from the master of ambient music. i guess we'll all just have to stay tuned...

interview: ben klock
check out this (relatively un-edited) transcript of a conversation with ben klock. the guy talks about his home-base, berghain, as well as some of his favorite tracks.

another interview: marcel dettmann
another berghain artist, dettmann talks with rhythmism.com about his upcoming new york city appearance, as well as his approach to music production and his love for his home club in berlin.

the black angels & black mountain: new albums/tour/chicago show
the black angels are set to release their third full-length album, phosphene dream, on tuesday, september 14. smilecoldanatomy has loved the retro-psychedelic styles of the texas-based band since their first album, 2006's passover, and their 2008 album directions to see a ghost is excellent as well. the band will be doing a u.s./canada co-headline tour with fellow psych-rock group black mountain, whose new album wilderness heart's release date will coincide with that of phosphene dream. awesomely, the two bands kick off this 'dropout boogie' tour right here in chicago, at the metro, thursday, october 28! check out more info at the black angels myspace page.

that's it for now. it's been a while since i've posted up some interesting new mixes to check out, so i'll try to do that next... happy wednesday!

Monday, August 2, 2010

matthew dear - 'black city' FREE stream

enjoy this FREE stream of matthew dear's new album black city, courtesy of fact magazine. black city will be released physically in two weeks on august 16, via ghostly international. until then, you have one week to let your ears digest the album via this free media player...

EDIT: sorry, looks like the free stream is all gone!

Matthew Dear: Black City by factmag