Daze On End

More 'layered sameness' recorded using my four-string guitar.

Naviarhaiku138 - First thing to catch my ear

The sound of running water can be heard here filtering through a few resonators and reverbs.

Yeah Nah

Simple video for a song written in March this year.

Disquiet Junto 0243 Synth Trial

The Disquiet Junto this week asks we share a favorite track from the audition tape sent to Ridley Scott for the Blade Runner sequel's soundtrack.

It's funny but hardly a week goes by without thinking about this film. A few weeks ago I read this beaut piece on the typography in the film.

I considered watching the film again today but settled for listening to tracks on Youtube, including beaut interpretations by James Holden and Benny Benassi.

I spent a little while exploring ideas on a Kaossilator before settling on writing a song using VST synths in Ableton Live. In this track I use V-Station, Oddity, Absynth, Massive and Drumaxx.

My idea was to update the style of electronic music a bit but still make it feel somewhat dated, so acid seemed a good direction.

The initial MIDI files were generated very quickly, then the generative approach continued with the MIDI tools in Live. The arpeggiator, scale and chord ('Film noir' preset!) effects were used to shape the notes before directing them to synths.

Valhalla Shimmer is in the mix and I automated the pitch in places, particularly that decaying effect at the end. There's also Ohmforce Frohmage on the drums for a muffled effect.

My Dog Has Fleas

Learned a lot from James Hill about phrasing chords on a stringed instrument.

His version of Voodoo Chile is virtuosic.

RIP Soundcloud

Today, 22 August 2016, marks the end of Soundcloud's Groups functionality. Unlike many changes to the popular audio-hosting website, it's happened with very little fanfare.

The end of Groups signals an end to my interest in Soundcloud. As much as I've appreciated their service in hosting my music for over seven years, I feel that withdrawing from their website is the only way I can express my disappointment with their decision to undermine the communities I enjoy.

Through Groups like the Disquiet Junto and Naviar Records' projects I have listened, been heard and learned from musicians based all over the world.

I've written elsewhere about the productive creative practice in making music and noise that I've maintained as a result of meeting the deadlines set by people like Marc and Marco, who run these two Groups respectively.

I'm sure Soundcloud have their reasons to close Groups. I know that I haven't been a great patron for their website. I bought a subscription to their service once so I could download my most popular song, then sought a refund almost immediately.

I've also been frustrated by Soundcloud doing things like stopping me from creating playlists (like this one of 120 Junto tracks), so I'm happy to have avoided feeling frustrated by paying for a service that doesn't work. (I am happy to see I've now recorded over 140 Junto tracks though!)

When the Junto's 101st project came along I started producing videos to show some of the processes involved in producing my tracks. I now have a playlist of 64 Junto tracks with videos and I'm pleased to see that Marc has an aspiration "for the Junto to become 'platform-agnostic'" through using llllllll.co "as a central place for each project".

This forum-based approach for the Junto makes sense as it's a model that's worked for the Ninja Tune Forum-based projects I've been involved with and provides an easy method for communicating with other producers. That Forum isn't as popular as it once was but, looking at my followers on various Soundcloud accounts, I get the impression that Soundcloud now isn't as popular either.

The Ninja Tune Forum also offers an interesting comparison as it has benefited from the shuttering of a similar service, when the Warp Records forum was closed. In that case an audience migrated to the Ninja's forum to continue their conversations about music and it led into developing projects like the seven-minute mixes and chain remixes.

It'll be interesting to see whether moving hundreds of producers onto a forum like llllllll.co will spur the development of new creative projects. Change can be a good thing, right?