Objekt – Needle And Thread

Image courtesy the artist

Objekt is Berlin-based electronic producer TJ Hertz. Joining the avant-garde composer Actress, Hertz also excels in future, data-driven music. I like the way he describes his music on his Soundcloud:

“Adventures in machine music built to make subs rattle and feet wiggle; a convoluted mess of elektrology and teknology, 3-step, bass-core, post windmill, proto-minimal wankstep, gondola, shithouse, acid wonk, ambient gabber, no more, no less.”

Get stuck in to some next-level beats. 👂


Ennanga Vision – Otim’s War

Image courtesy the artist

Gulu singing legend and ‘Acholi folk pop’ pioneer Otim Alpha teamed up with London producer Jesse Hackett and multi-instrumentalist Albert Ssempeke to produce Ennanga Vision“deconstructed musical forms from the kingdoms of Uganda.”

The album’s single ‘Otim’s War’ mashes together techno elements into traditional choral signing. The result is something like you’ve never heard before. The music video is fascinating too.

Pre-order the album on Bandcamp

Patten – RE-EDIT70

Image via the artist

Patten is a London-based experimental duo known for their awkward experimentation of electronic music. Their new remix compilation RE-EDITS Vol. 2 is jam-packed full of reworks from Boards of Canada (stream ‘REEDIT 70’ above), Cocteau Twins, Cypress Hill, even Rihanna. Each track gets  its own music video as well.

Futuristic, chaotic, next-level — Patten’s goal seems to want to be or smash together the avante-garde.

Fakear – Jonnhae Part 2.

Image courtesy the artist

Fakear is the artist name for Théo Le Vigoureux, an electronic producer based out of Caen, France. His most recent album Vegetal: Offshoots was recorded at the same time he crafted his debut album Animal.

Says Fakear on his Bandcamp page:

‘The fulfilment of the circle of life. Animal is nothing without Vegetal; written at the same time and with the same will.’

Taking influences from around the world, Fakear this time focuses his palette on India. Of the seven track spiritual journey, the last track ‘Jonnhae Part 2’ may be the most uplifting and ethereal.

Slamagotchi – Folded 

Slamagotchi AKA Sebastian Vivian (Photo via fb)

Slamagotchi is a Adelaide-based beat maker Sebastian Vivian. He’s released a slew of instrumentals to-date on his Soundcloud page.

‘Folded’ is one of his latest electronic chops, combining cinematic synths and jazzy soundscapes to a two-step beat. The track features on an 11-track compilation with other local Adelaide and Sydney beat-smiths from record label Paper Garden.

Download the compilation on Bandcamp

An interview with Gregory Grant (aka Prof.Logik)

Gregory Grant (aka Prof.Logik) is a musician based out of South Carolina. I first met Greg through SoundCloud 3 years ago when he kindly donated a track to my Music 4 Japan album to help raise money to help support Earthquake relief efforts in...

Gregory Grant (aka Prof.Logik) is a musician based out of South Carolina. I first met Greg through SoundCloud 3 years ago when he kindly donated a track to my Music 4 Japan album to help raise money to help support Earthquake relief efforts in Japan.

Greg has produced a total of 17 albums to date. Last week, I had a chance to reconvene with this prolific producer via Skype.

Who are you and what do you do?

My name is Gregory Grant. I’m a music producer/dj and sound designer. I explore synthesis techniques to make beats and explore new sounds.

What are you currently working on?

I’m currently collaborating with rapper Brisk in the House on a new record. I’m really picky with the artists I work with. I collaborate with artists who share the love for music and balance the commercial aspect. I always try to create something with the hint of the underground.

I’m also creating all sound and visuals for clothing line Marble Mansion. Having full creative control challenges me to sync both the audio and visual product. Stay tuned for an official release date.

Where do you like to work?

As a musician, the studio is where I do most of my work. But I’m on the road a lot doing live shows so I really like making music on the go. I use various field recorders to capture ambient sounds in the environment around me. In fact, I still use my Sony Walkman with a built-in microphone.

I then export these sounds to tape when I get back to the studio. I prefer tape because it preserves the original sound which I then mix into my beats. The best way to hear my music is on Vinyl so you can appreciate the raw pops.

“I want music to reflect the world we live in.”

What was your earliest ambition?

I always wanted to be an archaeologist so I could discover ancient relics. The thirst for discovery led me to drawing and graffiti when I was growing up in Queens. But then I got the music bug. I got my first keyboard at 6 years old. I started djing at when I was 9. Like an archaeologist, I continue to search for the perfect beat.

What motivates you?

My motivation comes from fans and listeners. The most inspiring moments are when I receive pages of fan mail thanking me for making the music that gets people through tough times. Making music has the same visceral impact on me.

A few years ago my studio got flooded and my fans raised a substantial amount of money to help me rebuild it. That’s when I knew that I had to keep making music. Life is full of curveballs. Emotion and mood shine through my music and art.

Who’s your inspiration

Nikola Tesla. He’s one of the greatest thinkers to ever live. He wasn’t afraid to test the waters like I test sound.

“The things that people are afraid of is what interests me the most.”

What are you looking forward to next?

I’m looking forward to making my live shows more interactive. I’d like to allow fans to make sounds that I can recreate on the fly and play live.

You can find out more about Prof.Logik’s work online here:

7 articles to read this weekend

Summary: Google is evil and incredibly smart, Twitter is not dead (yet), Drum N Bass is still alive and well, Football is not life, Walking makes you more creative, as does Reading, and the why the world needs less productivity apps.

1. Google’s Hegemony

Burying the URL

URLs are the essence. They make hypertext hyper. The term “web” is no accident – it refers to this explicitly.

Google is trying to remove the URL by tying it closer to search. This is essentially rigging one of the fundamental layers of the Internet, the fact that each URL is unique. Furthermore:

Maybe I was crazy to think that URLs were a permanent part of our culture. Still, I’ll miss the damn things. Let’s pour one out for the URL.

2. Tweeting at the Twitter Range

It takes a thousand tweets to learn Twitter

If it continues to take a thousands tweet to realize the value of Twitter it will never be widely adopted.

It takes a thousand times to get into the groove in anything. Needless to say, the challenge Twitter faces today is Wall Street’s exaggerated claims about its growth problem.

As MG Siegler argues, people will continue to exaggerate the end of Twitter while it persists.

3. Goldie is Still “Timeless”

“I’m an OG Again”: Goldie on 20 Years of Metalheadz, and Turning ‘Timeless’ Into an Orchestral Score

“If we play a Metalheadz set at one of those festivals, it’ll be dead. I would say though, the one good thing about electronic music is that it opened up into all different kinds of music. It’s not just about drum ‘n’ bass, and I like the idea of that. We couldn’t get away with that when we were younger. You had to get in a box and stay there. It was either drum ’n’ bass or pop back then.”

It’s still a bit of a surprise to see the popularity of electronic music these days. But when Kanye sampled Daft Punk, I knew it was the end of Electronica as a genre.

The good news about niche music like Drum N Bass is that while more people are aware of it thanks to the Internet’s long-tail, it’s still a little misunderstood.

4. Quit While You’re Ahead

The Lessons of Barry Sanders.

He was 31 years old, just a year removed from putting together one of the greatest seasons we’ve ever seen from a running back, and still completely healthy. He was also one year away from breaking Walter Payton’s all-time rushing record.

What’s it like to quit at your peak? For Barry Sanders, quitting felt like the right thing to do. Life was so much more than football.

Barry Sanders is my favorite running back of all time. When he touched the ball, anything could happen. Perhaps he quit to leave a few miracles to the mind.

5. Walk It Off

Need A Creative Solution? Go For A Walk, Says Science

Compared to sitting, walking in any form was shown to boost creativity by some 60%—even when subjects sat down at a desk afterward.

Walking isn’t just for creatives and health types. Walking is a way to do business. Whoever thought walking would become so trendy, along with standing up at work? At least people are walking…

6. Takes Time to Make Time (Reading)

The Art of Reading, Remembering, and Retaining More Books

I look at books as investments in a future of learning rather than a fleeting moment of insight, soon to be forgotten.

I read now more than ever, at least it feels that way. Maybe it’s the endless scrolling instead of the left to right page turning. Kindle also make it easy to highlight and save all my favorite quotes and so I can keep reading uninterrupted and go back later reference.

I also think I own the illusion of reading more today because I of all the short-form articles (snacks) in my RSS and Twitter, and tweets, most of which are high quality journalism.

7. Going Analog

No New Tools

Consider making a program for people, not a program for a computer. I don’t want a new app to help me do work; I want different ways to think about work so I can get more done.

Some apps can make you more productive (see here) and see the world differently (thanks Instagram) but for the most part what’s effective are the basic tools: pen, paper, Google Spreadsheet, etc.

Productivity apps might save you time but they don’t do the hard work for you.

Electronic Dance Music Goes Hollywood

Electronic music is mainstream, which is odd considering fifteen years ago it was a niche genre placed in the back section of US record stores.

I grew up listening to Paul Oakenfold, Underworld, The Prodigy, Chemical Brothers, and more obscure electronic DJs like Roni Size and Photek.  I never thought electronic music would be popular. 

To see dubstep break electronic music is even more surprising.  Just a few years ago dubstep was completely underground with the likes of Burial, Skream, and Benga.  Skrillex now makes $15 million a year.

Money taints music development.  Just look at the destruction of hip-hop, which like electronic music grew out of dance parties and peaked out after the rise of Eminem.  When music becomes more about Hollywood than the sound itself, it self-destructs.  Electronic music will burst as well but the real crate diggers will continue to support it.