Here’s a remix I did for my good friends The Crisis Project.
Hari from Electronic Music Wales was kind enough to invite me to do an interview for their site.
You can read our chat here – EMW
Covering topics – cheating in music, live electronic improvisation, stealing culture and field recordings, what it’s like to release through a label, studying music in the University of Wales, Newport, and other bits and bobs.
Image: Zoltan Nagy
I’ve recently been working in the studio with Ableton, for composition.
This is completely new to me, as I have only previously used Ableton for Live sets.
Here’s something I was messing around with this afternoon.
– It might be worth mentioning I have been listening to some more experimental stuff lately, retracing my university learning, Jacob Kirkeegard, Steve Reich, Alvin Lucier, the usual suspects.
and here’s what it looks like
What a night! my first gig in London, also my first gig with Bit Phalanx. Amazing music and lovely peeps thanks!
As I’ve been a bit quiet lately, I thought it might be nice to do a little post update thing.
I’ve been busy writing a new track, a snippet of which has appeared in a few of my you tube videos and my new set. . seems to have had a positive response so I’m working on getting that done and ready to release as a single along with a secret track that i’ve held back from putting online.. but has been very popular live.
I have been fortunate enough to be asked to play a few events over the next week.
Its a drawing musicing and pizza eating event followed by another bank holiday we’re all being a bit spoilt arent we.
So thats (nearly) it for me for June. Apart from this I will be doing a radio interview for Ujima FM, as well as a live set on air.. date and link to listen coming soon!
Big up Queenie.
The Salon is a crazy exciting musical food for thought night. Held by uni students from the University of Wales, Newport. More particularly it is held by students who study the unique Creative Sound and Music degree course. Even more particularly It was hosted this time by Gary Martin Rolinson, one of the students who also appeared in band The Coroner’s Court.
The night kicked off in true CSM (Creative Sound and Music) style with a band called Trichome. The frontperson explained to us the instruments were going to act as different animals in an evolution based game. He said we were in control of who plays their instrument louder, faster, quieter, not at all etc. We were in control of this by, at any point raising our hands in a signal fashion. There were agreed signals for different instruments and the variables appeared on flash cards, so we could effectively ‘vote’ for someone to be louder when the card louder appeared. This was a mesmorizing performance, with the added audience participation it was all the more enjoyable and an interesting quirky way to present it too. Being able to see and hear the differences that the audience made was a lot of fun visually. One of the aspects I enjoyed was that there was not room for musicians ego in this performance, it was purely down to what sounds the audience wanted to hear, making it a fruitful and erratic piece.
The night continued with some true compositional talent from Common Knowledge, they gave us some lovely tunes with some masterful keyboard playing, a really fantastic drummer, the kind that makes you tap your foot and nod your head to opposing rhythms when you didn’t realise you could do that.
The Coroner’s Court
Following this were The Coroners Court, they gave us a real kick with some improvised prog (and I think they are coining the term ‘improg’) which was typically not something I would anticipate enjoying, but I can confidentially say it was a thoroughly fantastic performance. With the bassist Reece Mclaughlin entering the audience to rock out and the saxophonist dominating some screaming notes it was an experience that has left me intrigued to see more.
Image Kai Lena
I finished the night with a more experimental set than I usually do, enduring some long built up repetitive loops that end up turning to some sort of overpowering audio mush, (and some sneaky Whitney Houston vocals). I knew my audience were ready for it, so I took the opportunity to play with some less conventional sounds and really enjoyed playing to such a responsive and vocal bunch. Cheers to Newport, The Salon, and all the Creative Sound and Music students. Hope to be there again soon.
My next show will be in Newport’s venue Meze Lounge.
This is going to be an evening of experimental delights. The night is going to be hosted by Newport University’s Creative Sound and Music students. Being a graduate from this course myself I’ll get to see how the current students are pushing the boundaries of formulaic music, exploring sound, performance techniques, composition approaches, or any other variable you can think up.
I have played a Salon night before, last time I played it was held in Cardiff Arts Institute
Cardiff Arts Institute – February 2011 – Photography Nic Finch
The set up I will be using at Meze Lounge, Newport 16.02.2012
I was very kindly donated the APC40, and have enjoyed getting to know it.
The APC40 is a control surface designed to work with Ableton Live, the program I use to create my live sets. Its very easy to map keys on the device to effect variables with just a few clicks. This bit of kit enables some really exciting experimentation with effects, looping and chopping up clips. Something which I love about Ableton is the ability to switch between aspects of one track and another with everything sounding smooth and professional. This is down to Ableton Live being a piece of software that snaps everything to a tempo you set it to. Of course you can alter this as well, if you wanted to have the tempo jumping all over the place you could. The beauty of things staying in time is the freedom you get to mash up your own tracks, which when doing live gives you a chance to be really creative and compose a new song out of your existing songs. This is a very rewarding process for me, and it means the audience get a unique version every time you play live. I have probably only just scratched the surface of possibilities with these two things. But I am always exploring and accidentally stumbling upon new things you can do.