Monday, March 13, 2006
Following on from some precursory thoughts on just how boring drum and bass can be and left running all over the net to find some drum and bass hard edged enough to match the beats being drilled out by Krust last Saturday, I dug out an album I hadn't' listened to in a few months and left my recently acquired Krust and Die's I Kamanchi aside. If you want your dnb hard chawed enough to make your neighbour's think your running a crack den, Exile's Pro Agoinst is the place to start. The track "Big Bad Purple Bad Boy" is exactly the sort of explosive infusion of chopped, beat matched vocal warbling, scuttery amens and mind damaging bass I was looking for. Enduser deserves an honourable mention for this one as well, with his Bollywood Breaks being typical of a style that transverses genre in search of eerie samples to layer over beats ranging from ragga tinged to filthy breaks.
But I'm going to leave aside the aesthetic side of the music in this post to scrap underneath to expose some of the methods used my Exile in producing his tracks. Why the hell would I do this? I was 14 when and in the front row to watch Liam Howlett pound the shit out of 6ft high racks of synths and analogue samplers at Semple Stadium for the last "Day Trip to Tip" nearly a decade ago, seeing as some of the most exciting gigs I've been to in the past 12 months have mainly consisted of laptops looking like they were being man-handled by overly stylish nerds, many of my tradionalist assumptions on music production goes straight out the window. But there are still those that impulsively hold on to these atavistic conceptions of what "live" music is, be they aspiring Whealans treading indie kids ridiculing the artificiality of electronic music or house music gits and other associated DJ's disturbed by the increasing omnipresence of laptops and entire record collections accumulated at the rate of your megabyte download speed instead of your age.
With this in mind the Native Instruments website has fascinating technical interview along with an accompanying video with Planet Mu's Tim Exile on his use of Reaktor 5 in a live setting. Exile frequented these shores last to headline a gig in the Belvedere last year, supported by natives like The Person. He engages in the generation of hyper editing drum and bass that has earned ill thought out comparisons with the likes of Squarepusher and Aphex Twin from Pitchfork. Exile sees himself as fitting into the drum and bass scene solely "with a pinch of cynicism, a fair bit of disbelief and a large portion of resignation."
Some internet goodies courtesy of Little Big: if you're lucky you might get this live video working, until then there's a bit of fucking around with Evol Intent and Exile tunes on this site. As ever the BBC can be expected to provide a live mash up with Rob da Bank here, as well as an extensive interview on production again. There's an mp3 of a typically mentalist Exile set from Bristol, after your salivating over that you'd do worst than gawking at this feature and interview on Exile that'll do up far more justice than my ramblings at Speakers Push The Air. For those of us suddenly inspired to start fecking around like rhythmless tools with digital audio software, this may be no bad place to start. They've even provided a very generous selection of over 1000 samples.
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About Soundtracksforthem specialises in iconoclastic takes on culture, politics, and more shite from the underbelly of your keyboard. A still-born group blog with a recent surge of different contributers but mainly maintained by James R. Big up all the contributers and posse regardless of churn out rate: Kyle Browne, Reeuq, Cogsy, Chief, X-ie phader/Krossie, Howard Devoto, Dara, Ronan and Mark Furlong. Send your wishes and aspirations to antropheatgmail.com
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