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Monday, 21 December 2009

Mix DS150: Inferno

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Sadly my time at Bassdrive radio has come to an end. The reason I was given was that they are looking for 100% reliability from their show broadcasts, which I could not offer anymore. I had worked closely with them to try and improve my setup but to no avail. The technical problems were frustrating for the station, it's listeners and for me...

One limitation of Traktor is that it can only stream in ogg format. One limitation of Bassdrive is that it would only support mp3 input. This meant I had to either prerecord, transcode in real time to mp3 or broadcast my "what you hear" channel. None of which were very prosaic solutions in the end.

I have had a great 5 years on Bassdrive moving from a weekly to a monthly show last year. Like Dfunk said though, "all good things must come to an end". I'd like to thank the whole Bassdrive crew for having faith in me to begin with and I'm sorry things didn't work out. There are no hard feelings and the bright side of all this is that I can now concentrate what little free time I have these days on this podcast. I may return to the radio in future but not before I have a completely solid broadcasting setup and can actually look forward to a trouble-free show.

This month's mix features liberal festive sprinklings of Netsky, Command Strange and The Square tunes - 3 artists with unique styles that continue to catch my ear. Also featured is another delectably simple yet melodic piano tune from Komatic that I am amazed has not been signed yet.

Enjoy the new mix over Christmas and the NY. All I ask is that you don't forget to drop by and visit in 2010.

Netsky - Come Back Home - Liq-Weed Ganja
Komatic - Those Around Me - Unsigned
Phors - Show Me Right - Fokuz
Greg Packer, Big Bud - Rise - Soundtrax
Drumagick - Full Energy - Nu Labels
Agent Alvin - Drift Away - Hospital
Netsky - Everyday - Liq-Weed Ganja
Q Project - Everything Changes But Me - CIA
The Square - Admiration - Drumwise
DJ Marky, S.P.Y. - Days Go Slow feat. Miri - BBE
Command Strange - Vacation - All Street
Syncopix, MTC Yaw - Good Morning - Form
Break - Winter Sun - Shogun Audio
dBridge - Memory Park - dBridge's SoundCloud
The Square - Motion - Drumwise
Command Strange - Agaom - Fokuz
SpectraSoul - 4 Points - Metalheadz
Command Strange - So Good - Have A Break
Netsky - Midnight Express - Spearhead
Eveson - Dirty Habits - Future Thinkin

Monday, 16 November 2009

Mix DS149: Let's do dis!

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Apologies to any of you that tuned into Bassdrive yesterday to listen to the show live. For some unknown reason, my stream was coming through too fast so had to be cut off. All is not lost though - I recorded the set for your exclusive listening pleasure. Please check it out and let me know what you think, I missed having direct feedback from the Bassdrive chat room.

This month's episode is named after the iconic sound-byte from Modern Warfare 2, read by Craig Fairbrass of EastEnders fame, playing alpha male cockney SAS sergeant Gaz... MW2 as it's annoyingly abbreviated is the sequel to a highly over-rated first person shooter with silly pink sniper rifles, indesctructable scenery and a well above average share of what sounds like, screeching chimps.

Having played it over the weekend, it seems the same game as before with a few extra bells 'n' whistles. Extra bells in more ways than one. This game sold 7 million copies on its first day...very clever marketing and I've got a feeling we'll see Craig and co. in an associated movie spin-off soon...without Bianca this time.

Bianca??!
"Sorry Bianca, let's NOT do dis...your breasts are waaay too low"

Kubiks, Lomax - Miracle World - Phunkfiction
Metrik - Forward Approach - Viper
Blame - Skyline - 720 Degrees
Muffler - The Moment - Big Riddim
Triad - Fiasco - Deep Soul Music
Moby - One Time We Lived (Matrix, Futurebound Remix) - DNBA
Sub Focus - Splash - RAM
XRS - Bravin - Bulldozer
Komatic - Now Shes Free - ???
Breakage - Cooper - Critical
State Of Mind - Floor 14 (Bungle Remix) - Syntax Audio
Peyo - U Can Make It - Vandal
KG - Lucky 17 - Allsorts
ICR, Soulproof - One In A Million (Remix) - Strictly Digital
Bcee - Glitterballs (Redeyes, Lenzman Remix) - Spearhead
Drumagick - Full Energy - Nu Labels
Stanza and Grimm - By My Side - Influenza Media
Undersound - Happy Go Lucky - Point 9 Audio
Command Strange - Free Your Soul - All Street Recordings

Monday, 19 October 2009

Mix DS148: OP in the AO

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Mixed live and broadcast on Bassdrive yesterday. I had over 1,450 listeners this month - 200 or so above my previous record so thanks to all that tune in. I quite agree with Paul SG who said in the chat room "Sundays are the new Fridays!"...

Look out for the new Kubiks LP "Blurred Vision" coming out in November. Remix below "Bamboo" is one of my favourites from it.

Enea - Feel That High - Have A Break
High Contrast - Natural High - Hospital
Blame, Selah - Because Of You - 720 Degrees Music
Donnie Dubson - Battlecat - Influenza Media
Sub Focus - Splash - RAM
Muffler - Falling 2009 - Big Riddim
Netsky - Tomorrow's Another Day - Liq-Weed Ganja
Nero - Do You Wanna - Viper
Atlantic Connection - Everything Changes - Westbay Digital
HoldTight - Girl Next Door - Industry
Shinichi Osawa - Star Guitar (Brookes Brothers Remix) - Data
Simplification - Trilogy - Digital Blus
Davide Carbone - Bamboo (Kubiks remix) - Rubik
Ikon - China Crash - Renegade
Alix Perez - Contradictions - Shogun Audio
Vahn - Never Enough (Q-Bik Remix) - Urban Sickness Audio
Peyo, Cloud Nine - That's What You Do To Me (Random Movement Remix) - Blu Saphir

Sunday, 13 September 2009

Mix DS147: Hotkeys

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Advisory, Scenic - Afterglow - Urban Chemistry Kubiks, Lomax - Spirit Filled - Phunkfiction Crystal Clear, Netsky - King Of The Stars - Liq-Weed Ganja State Of Mind - Floor 14 (Bungle Remix) - Syntax Audio Trei - Livewire - SGN:LTD Noisia - Last Look - Metalheadz Atom - Automatic - Sonorous Seba - Snow - Hospital Lenzman - The Blues - Spearhead Calibre - The Blues - Signature Young Ax - System Of Survival - Santorin SpectraSoul - Insignia - Exit Metrik - Time To Change - Viper Sigma - Nexus - Life Logistics - Warehouse - Hospital A Sides - Aryze - Eastside Music

Monday, 10 August 2009

Mix DS146: Drumlins

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My trusty original X-Session MIDI controller had been playing up in the lead up to this months show. Several of the rotary dials on it began to malfunction, causing them to have a life of their own and start changing values for me during a mix...
Evolution X-Session The offending article - My long-serving original X-Session
I've unceremoniously retired it to the dustbin now but this then gave me the problem of what to replace it with? I did my research on what was available and ended up going for the compact and relatively inexpensive elder brother to the X-Session, the X-Session Pro. I was tempted to spend more on one of the posh Vestax's controllers, but they still haven't really got it right for me yet... not for that kind of outlay anyway. The VCI-100 is nice but I don't need or want platters. The VCM-100 is nice too, but I don't need another audio interface and I want 4 faders. Faders are what I missed most about using the original X-Session. The most tempting I found was the super new TR-1 but it also comes with a built-in audio interface and has no cross fader! What were Vestax thinking??
Vestax VCI-100 Vestax VCI-100 - £400 with pretend records or 'platters' on.
Vestax VCM-100 Vestax VCM-100 - £400 - Nice and compact but pricey (Due to the audio interface) and only 2 faders.
Vestax TR-1 Vestax TR-1 - £400...so very nearly but where is the damn x-fader? We're not all techno n trance DJ's you know!
X-Session Pro X-Session Pro...only £60! Can't go wrong for that money with cross fader, 12 rotaries and 4 up faders. BYO audio interface though.
And finally here is this weeks show tracklist mixed using the new X-Session Pro. Perhaps a little more tentatively mixed than usual due to me trying to get used to my new controller but I hope you enjoy listening nevertheless. Let me know what you think!
  1. Brooklyn - Someone remix - Horizons 
  2. Mow - Jazz Me Up Bass Me Down - Have A Break 
  3. Tyler Straub - Impatient - Santorin 
  4. Redeyes - 90 (Got Over Love) - www.lavibe.org 
  5. Bcee - Consumed - Spearhead 
  6. Bachelors of science - The BeautIful Life - Horizons 
  7. Basic Operations - The Great Break Away - Sound Trax 
  8. Netsky - Prisma - Liq-Weed Ganja 
  9. Lenzman - Sugar Hill - Deepkut 
  10. Undersound - That Thing Called - Point 9 Audio 
  11. Resound - Stay The Night - Santorin 
  12. Donnie Dubson - Super Marimba - Have A Break 
  13. Brookes Brothers - Someone - Viper 
  14. Random Movement - Methods of Thought feat. Basic Ops - Bingo Beats 
  15. Sub Focus - Follow The Light (Vocal Mix) - RAM

Tuesday, 4 August 2009

Consonance and dissonance in balance

As Frank Zappa explained it, "The creation and destruction of harmonic and 'statistical' tensions is essential to the maintenance of compositional drama. Any composition (or improvisation) which remains consistent and 'regular' throughout is, for me, equivalent to watching a movie with only 'good guys' in it, or eating cottage cheese." In other words, a composer cannot ensure a listener's liking by using exclusively consonant sounds. However, an excess of tension may disturb the listener. The balance between the two is essential. Contemporary music has evolved in the way that tensions are less prepared and less structured than in Baroque or Classical periods, thus producing new styles such as Jazz and Blues, where tensions are usually not prepared. New show coming up this weekend folks!

Sunday, 12 July 2009

Mix DS145: Pangolin

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Hey all, here's this month's mix and playlist.

Digital Hunters - Red Glass - Innerground
Muffler - Hear Me Scream - Hospital
A Sides - Tokiado - Eastside Music
Amoss - Lost In Tokyo - ???
Mistabishi - Talk Me Down - Hospital
Peyo - U Can Make It - Vandal
Eros, Paul Sg - Finding The Right Words - Innerground
Redeyes - Kashmere - Bingo Beats
Atlantic Connection - Everything Changes - Westbay Digital
Telmo A - Winter Lights - Santorin
J Laze - Nod To The Godz - Strictly Digital
Mace - Light Up The Darkness - Planet Funk
B-Complex - Beautiful Lies - Hospital
Brother - Everything To Give - Fokuz
Q Project - Five 13 - CIA

Thursday, 18 June 2009

Mix DS144: Reap

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A new beta of Traktor Pro came out last week so I bit the bullet and mixed with it for this months show. Still a few bugs to fix but in general a much faster performance than previous versions. Tracks seem to load much quicker into the decks but there are still some problems with the FX units when used from cold (as you may be able to detect!) I still need to collate a track list for you guys but in the meantime help yourself to the audio. This week features new music from Undersound, BCee and Redeyes among others.

Monday, 11 May 2009

Mix DS143: All units

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Brookes Brothers - Desert Island - W10 Records
Crystal Clear, Netsky - King Of The Stars - Liq-Weed Ganja
L.A.O.S. - GTGD feat. Kaleb - Spektra
S.P.Y. - Sunship - Spearhead
SpectraSoul - Organiser - Critical
Alix Perez - Melanie - Shogun Audio
Bungle - The Need of Being Alone - Soul R
Silent Witness - Poster Girl - Critical
Redeyes - Soul Brother - W10 Records
Random Movement - The Student - Westbay
Command Strange - In My Heart - Influenza Media
Calibre - In Denial - Soul R
Break - Combination Style - Metalheadz
Paul SG, Eros - Midnight Rain - Golden Orb
BU - Broken Planet (Syncopix Broken Planet Remix) - Digital Colours
LSB - Lost Now - Deep Soul Music
Basic Operations - Sold Hold - Nu Directions
Donnie Dubson - Rolling Home - Have A Break

Thursday, 16 April 2009

Mix DS142: Click-clack

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Eros, Soulgrifter - Lemme Love - Liquid Brilliants
Dan Marshall - Fools Paradise - Deep Soul Music
Blame, The Pedge - Avalon - Hospital
Logistics - Jungle Music - Hospital
BU - Broken Planet (Syncopix Broken Planet Remix) - Digital Colours
Implex, Medicin - Closer To The Stars - Formation
Command Strange - Don't Touch - Influenza Media
Calibre - Can't Get Over You - Soul R
Contour - If All You Need Is Time - Sole Digital
Mutt - Over - Inside
Stress Level & TC1 - Lost In Music (Part 2) - Dispatch
L.A.O.S. - We All (Blame Remix) - Spearhead
Ross D - The Music - Liquid Brilliants
Matrix, Futurebound - Strength 2 Strength - Metro
Big Bud - Kiki - Soundtrax

Thursday, 2 April 2009

UAF/DOA competition

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I entered a competition last month to win an all expenses paid set at the Urban Artforms Festival in Austria to be held this May. 100 DJ's were nominated to participate and the results were announced today. We had to submit an 8-10 minute drum and bass mix and the competition organisers chose the winner which was DJ Insular. I thought I'd let you have a listen both to my entry and the winning entry so you can make your own mind up. My view is that I did not expect to win but hoped that the winner's mix would be seamless, full of energy and leave me wanting to hear more. While it has some good tunes in and is quite smooth for a vinyl mix I'd hoped the mixing in it would inspire me but it didn't really. Anyway, I'm sure the judges know what they were doing and chose their favourite. Congratulations to Insular and readers please let me know what you think to both mini/mega mixes. I always value your feedback! Playlists Insular mix 1. Allied Forces - Gather Round 2. M Beat ft General Levy - Incredible 3. System - Near Miss 4. Xample & Lomax - Contra 5. Mr L - Voices In My Dreams 6. Icicle - Lost Hours 7. Lomax - Come & See 8. Lenzman - Last Day On Earth Rocdollar mix 1. Klute - Ashram 2. Command Strange - See In The Sun 3. L.A.O.S - We All 4. Steve Angello, Laidback Luke, Robin S - Show Me Love (Blame Remix) 5. Shinichi Osawa - Star Guitar (Brookes Brothers Remix)

Sunday, 8 March 2009

Mix DS141: Daylight Wasting Time

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Couldn't resist squeezing in two new digital releases by a young, up and coming Kazakh producer by the name of Command Strange. Really liking what I've heard so far... nice work from Influenza and Golden Orb signing him up!

Command Strange - Don't Move Down - Influenza Media
Contour - Shine - Rubik
Eveson - Spirit Song (Silent Witness Remix) - Digital Tunes Dubs
S.P.Y. - Monochrome - Soul R
Trisector - Morning Rain - Medschool
Command Strange - Goa - Golden Orb
Lomax - Resist - Soul R
Big Bud - Kiki - Soundtrax
Spirit - Fantasy - CIA
SpectraSoul - Tectonic - Deep Soul Music
Atlantic Connection - Echo Park - Influenza Media
Sabaruko - Love Sensation - Sonorous
Implex, Medicin - Closer To The Stars - Formation
Lenzman, Treez - Bear Trap - Deepkut
Naibu - Opium Lady - Horizons
Music Commix - Life We Lead - Soul R
LSB - Lost Now - Deep Soul Music
Klute - Ashram - Commercial Suicide

Sunday, 8 February 2009

Mix DS140: Transmutation

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I have really enjoyed the recent celebrations of the 200th anniversary of Charles Darwin's birth. It is truly staggering what evolution can produce if given long enough. Many of the evolutionary principles such as adaptation, mutation and natural selection apply not only to species but to cultural phenomena like DJ software. Instead of the transmission unit being a gene, Richard Dawkins coined the word "meme" to describe how one might extend evolutionary principles to explain the spread of ideas and cultural phenomena. This mix is my first with a new species of DJ software called Traktor Pro. It's direct ancestor is Traktor 3 (which I was using up until now) but it has been influenced by many other meme-pools. I held off using it live for a while because it had too many bugs (mutations??) but this latest beta (1.1) is much more stable and usable. I'm still getting used to the new features particularly the effects and filters but think it has a lot of potential... Big up to the 1369 Bassdrive listeners that tuned in live!

Kiat, S.P.Y. - Close Encounters - Soul R
Trisector - Morning Rain - Medschool
Break - Destiny Comes Ringing - Commercial Suicide
Commix - Painted Smile - DNBA
Mixmaster D.O.C. - Gangsta Down - Deep Soul Music
Henree - Lomo - Deepkut
Electrosoul System - After Hours - Brand Nu
Commix - Life We Lead - Soul R
Blame - Because Of You - 720 Degrees Music
Metrik - Your World - Intrinsic
Lenzman, Treez - Bear Trap - Deepkut
Seba, Krazy - Detroit Amen - Critical
Phobia, Jubei - Overload - Invaderz
Noisia
- Block Control - Moving Shadow
Naibu - The Shrine - Horizons
Blake Reary - Nowhere Near (Advisory Remix) - Binary Soul
TC - Borrowed Time VIP feat. Sub Focus - DStyle
Xample
- Contra feat. Lomax - RAM

Thursday, 15 January 2009

Chromaesthetic DJ software?

I stumbled upon this fascinating paper while rambling around Google for an image of the circle of fifths. For a couple of years now I have been suggesting to Native Instruments DJ division that they build upon the tools in Traktor to enhance live harmonic mixing. So far, I haven't had much success but I think this may be down to me not explaining myself very well and not campaigning hard enough. This paper has helped me to crystalise my ideas for a tool that can link tonality with colour within Traktor (or any software DJ application). Extract from paper: This correlation is mirrored by the testimony of chromaesthetics, those afflicted by a common form of synaesthesia in which neural pathways are crossed and auditory stimulus also evokes a visual response – flickering colored hallucinations dubbed “photisms.” Although the color of any particular note varies between chromaesthetics, these phenomena do have universal qualities, or form constants, which include inverse relationships of pitch and tempo to photism size and smoothness (respectively). It has also been observed that the paintings of these hallucinations closely resemble early cave paintings, which lends some credence to the hypothesis that spoken language and art developed from similarly intertwined synapses in the brains of early humans. Specifically, the software could represent a tracks tonality through use of colour - say on the waveform display itself. As the DJ alters the pitch, the colour changes accordingly. Using a system similar to the colour charts in Michael's paper (pictured below) the DJ could quickly learn which colours go with which (and hence which keys go with which) because they go together visually as well as audibly. The tracks listed in the track collection display below the waveform could be in the colour of their natural key or the colour of their projected key after an arbitrary pitch shift (similar to the system found in the excellent Rapid Evolution 2 by Qualia)

Sunday, 11 January 2009

Mix DS139: Hypercluster

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I've only just realised in iTunes you only see reviews of podcasts according to which iTunes country store you are browsing. When I switched from the UK to the USA store (using the drop-down box at the bottom of the store page) I was amazed to find I had 9 reviews, all rated 5 out of 5! Thanks to everyone that has commented and reviewed this feed, I'm really chuffed you are enjoying it!

Metrik - Your World - Intrinsic
Brookes Brothers - Hard Knocks - Breakbeat Kaos
Q-Project - Electric Lust Orchestra - Hospital
Spirit - Fantasy - CIA
Lenzman - String City - Fokuz
Trei - Too High - Critical
DJ Samurai - Outsider - Viper
Atlantic Connection - Disco Shit (Bass Anthem) - Westbay
Q-Project - Just Chillin - Machine Funk
Mixmaster Doc - Mr Scott - Sonorous
L.A.O.S. - Star Soul - Have A Break
Logistics - Intervention - Hospital
SpectraSoul - Peninsula - Shogun Audio
Lomax - Come And See - Critical
Atlantic Connection - Sleaze (The Stripper Song) - Westbay
Nymfo - Cybernetic Disorder - Critical
Incident - Ambush - Basswerk Files

Tuesday, 6 January 2009

DLM Studio Mix

I found this really nice new 2 hour harmonic mix from DLM (myspace.com/dlmdj). DLM performed it using 3 Serato-driven digital decks. DLM said "Its slightly different to my previous ones with a good deal less 'anthemy' dancefloor type stuff on it and a lot more rolling, liquid type beats instead. Let me know what you think - spent a LOT more time than usual planning this one to make sure the mixes roll as harmonically as possible." Well, I appreciate his efforts and I thought you guys would to. Check it and let us know what you think!