Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Early ELECTRONIC music - Part 2

Ok so Delia Derbyshire was the genius behind the BBC workshop and an Electronic music pioneer in her own right. She co-created the Dr. Who theme which you can listen to in Part 1. Delia, along with Paul Vorhaus and Paul Lytton formed the band White Noise and released the ground breaking album "An Electric Storm" and has become a classic among Electronic musicians and fans.

white noise, an electric storm, delia derbyshire, electronic
*Click picture to listen

Kosmische and Krautrock Muzik

As I said in Part 1 the Germans were pioneers of Electronic music in the late 60-70s.

Kluster was formed in 1968 and consisted of Conrad Schnitzler, Hans-Joachim Roedelius, and Dieter Moebius, three very big names in Electronic music. Their debut album Klopfzeichen is very experimental and considered one of the first Industrial albums. Schnitzler left the band the remaining two created Cluster and released several albums my favorite being Zuckerzeit in 1974:

This album sounds like it could have been released today

In 1970, Kraftwerk was formed and became probably the most renowned of this era. They released a few great albums until they finally broke out with the album Autobahn, which marked a significant change in their style. For the next 10 years they released the most influential Electronic albums ever. Here are some samples:

this song was the first sample in hip hop music, with the song Planet Rock by Afrika Bambataa

In other words, fuck Daft Punk.

The bands Can and Ash Ra Tempel were a couple of the first experimental rock bands to incorporate electronic sounds and tape loops. Holger Czukay, who was greatly influenced by Stockhausen brought over his teachings into the Can's music.

A few members of Kraftwerk quit and created Neu! I'm getting lazier and I don't feel like saying much but they are hugely influential in electronic music.

Tangerine Dream:

For more Kosmische bands go Here.

There were other influential bands around this time other than Germany. Lately I've been listening to a lot Yellow Magic Orchestra who come from Japan. They composed some songs for video games and made some great albums.

This song reminds me of epic battle music for Mega Man or something ...

Anyways I think that's enough information and videos for people who don't have too much knowledge of early Electronic Music. I intended to write a lot more but I've grown lazy. Hope you enjoyed!

Sunday, October 17, 2010

Early ELECTRONIC Music - Part 1


Many people who listen to old electronic songs comment that it is ahead of its time. There is a sense that electronic music is music of the future. The imagery it provokes is that of futuristic worlds of robots and high-tech cities. Furthermore, Electronic music is intrinsically linked to science-fiction and borrows much of its symbols and ideas. Like science-fiction, it is a genre of imagination invented out of the advent of technology and is still having a profound impact of modern and popular music.

robot, science fiction, Shigeru Komatsuzaki, japanese, art

Before electronic music, composers had a desire to use emerging technology for music purposes. One of the first and influential inventions was the Audion, a thermionic valve or vacuum tube. Later on, an electromechanical instrument called the Telharmonium was developed by Thaddeus Cahill in the years 1898-1912. However, its size made it impractical. The first electronic instrument is viewed to be the Theremin, invented by Léon Theremin circa 1920.

the Teleharmonium

In the Early 1900s, futurists like Luigi Russolo approached the emerging technology with radical aesthetic views which threw out previous notions of music and valued noise. This would be an influence for later composers.

luigi russolo, art of noise, umami

Musique concrete

With the invention of magnetic audio tape came recordings, along with early effects like echo and delay. Musique concrete was a technique involving the editing together of recorded fragments of natural and industrial sound, or "cut ups" as WIlliam S Burroughs and Brion Gyson were famous for. Burroughs also used the cut up technique in his literature, literally cutting up words and reassembling them.

Audio tapes also had profound work on modern composers, which can be seen in works by Pierre Shaeffer and Edgar Varese. Varese's work would have a profound impact on the young Frank Zappa, whose love for his music lasted his entire life.

Elektronische Musik

The Germans are known as the true heavyweights of Electronic music and have influenced whole generations of musicians in not only electronic, but in rock, pop, hip hop, indie ... "chillwave".... pretty much everything. In fact, you could probably thank the germans for nearly all modern music.

Karlz Stockhausen. Yes, the guy that called 9/11 the "greatest piece of art ever conceived". He was the primary influence for most popular german music from the 60s-70s, mostly called krautrock or elektronische. His work was similar to Varese and he even worked with Shaeffer in the 50s.

An example of Stockhausen's work:

"Hymnen" is essentially a composition of nationally anthems from around the world, and transformed electronically. His influence German musicians was more his ideas than the music itself. Holger Czukay studied under Stockhausen and his influence is a large part of Can and his later solo works.

Eventually, American Electronic music would come to be influenced by Stockhausen and his predecessors. The Music for Magnetic Tape Project was formed by members of the New York School (John Cage, Earle Brown, Christian Wolff, David Tudor, and Morton Feldman).

In 1958, the BBC Radiophonic Workshop was formed, which became the most popular electronic music studio in the world thanks to it's collaboration with the creators of Dr. Who to create the theme song. Delia Derbyshire was the creative genius of the group and went on to create her own music, which I'll talk about in Part 2.

You can already see early hip hop in this video.

The original Dr. Who theme. The first television theme to be completely created by electronic means.

That's all for now. Part 2 will include popular German music from the 60s and its influence on music all over the world. Part 2 will be alot more fun since I'll get to talk about kraftwerk and YMO and other great music, so stay tuned! :]

Music Therapy for Illness

ancient, music, mesothelioma, music healing

Music has long been considered a healing art. Ancient civilizations around the world used music as medicine, offering songs and chants to heal both the body and the soul. In the United States, Native Americans made music an important part of their healing rituals as well and it isn’t unusual for spiritual healers from a number of other cultures to still use music to ease pain and other symptoms associated with a variety of diseases and disorders.

American doctors have also long recognized the advantages of music therapy for patients with all sorts of medical issues, including cancers like mesothelioma. While no one has ever claimed that music cures cancer, studies have shown that listening to music and participating in other music-related activities can improve a patient’s quality of life, if even for a short time. For patient’s battling terminal disease like mesothelioma cancer, this can be extremely valuable.

How Does it Work?
Music therapy can be performed in a variety of different settings and in various ways. It may be administered by a degreed professional who has been certified in music therapy, by another medical professional, or may even be self-administered at home.

Many patients may mistakenly believe that they need to be “musical” to take advantage of this type of therapy when, in fact, no musical experience is necessary. While many experienced musicians do find making music to be therapeutic, music therapy as a science requires only an open mind and a willingness to try something that may help relieve the symptoms of cancer difficult side-effects associated with mesothelioma treatment.

Many forms of music therapy simply involve listening to the music of the patient’s choice, but may also include playing simple instruments, singing, writing songs that express one’s feelings, or discussing lyrics of existing songs. Hence, therapy of this type can be active or passive, allowing it to be used even with patients who are deemed “too sick” to participate.

For those who have knowledge of chakras, music therapy has long been associated with chakra healing

Music Therapy

Advantages of Music Therapy
A number of studies have been conducted involving the use of music therapy and most have determined that this type of alternative treatment does indeed have its advantages. A 2003 study conducted in the United Kingdom involved 42 patients with leukemia, lymphoma, and solid tumors who were candidates for bone marrow transplants. Half the patients participated in music therapy after their transplants while others received traditional care. Those receiving music therapy reported a marked decrease in pain and nausea during and after the sessions. In addition, the new bone marrow was slower to develop in patients who did not participate in music therapy.

Additionally, an Australian study found that music therapy was an important part of palliative care for terminally ill patients, demonstrating that participation in this type of therapy – even in a passive way – helped reduce both chronic and acute pain.

The American Music Therapy Association also encourages the use of music therapy to “elevate patients' mood and counteract depression; promote movement for physical rehabilitation; calm or sedate, induce sleep; counteract apprehension or fear; and lessen muscle tension for the purpose of relaxation, including the autonomic nervous system.” It has also been demonstrated to reduce high blood pressure, and patients who take advantage of music therapy report an overall feeling of well-being after a session and often report a reduced need for pain medication or anti-depressants.

read more:
Note: Malignant mesothelioma is a rare type of cancer that occurs in the thin layer of cells lining the body's internal organs, known as the mesothelium. There are three recognized types of mesothelioma. Pleural mesothelioma is the most common form of the disease, accounting for roughly 70% of cases, and occurs in the lining of the lung known as the pleura. Peritoneal mesothelioma occurs in the lining of the abdominal cavity, known as the peritoneum and pericardial mesothelioma originates in the pericardium, which lines the heart.

Some musicians dedicated their work to this concept of music therapy. Sun Ra used the cosmos as inspiration for his music and he thought as music as cosmic vibration which could be used to heal the mind, body and soul.

sun ra, space, orchestra, music

download Sun Ra's Cosmic Tones for Mental Therapy

Saturday, October 16, 2010

Sufjan Stevens - Age of Adz

sufjan stevens, age of adz, download
*click pic for more info

With his sixth proper album, Sufjan Stevens does battle with what we've come to expect from a proper Sufjan Stevens album. This time, instead of painstakingly humanizing the locations, historical inhabitants, and trivia of a certain slab of America, he's more concerned with his own state of mind. Banjos are out; moody electronics, deep bass, and drums that burst like geysers are in. The lengthiest song title on his last LP, 2005's Illinois, was 53 words long; here, that same superlative goes to a tune called "I Want to Be Well". He's whispering less, hollering more. And at the climax of The Age of Adz, the devout Christian and poster boy for mannered indie-dude sensitivity shouts, "I'm not fuckin' around!" no less than 16 times. Believe him.

Yet, there is no mistaking this as a work by the Detroit-born, Brooklyn-dwelling overachiever. Trilling flutes, meticulously arranged choirs, and an overarching sense of hugeness are still apparent. The record's last track, "Impossible Soul", is a five-part suite that lasts more than 25 minutes and boasts harps, horns, blips, Auto-Tuned vocals, a twee-dance breakdown, some cheerleader call-and-response, and even a little trad-folk guitar picking, you know, for kicks. That single track bulges with more engaging ideas than most artists could muster in a career, and there's no one else on earth that could've come up with it. Even the record's glitched backdrop isn't entirely unprecedented; Stevens' pre-breakout 2001 instrumental album Enjoy Your Rabbit could be looked back on as a sketchbook for what would become The Age of Adz. So as Stevens' current restlessness fights it out with his past accomplishments, the listener ends up winning. - pitchfork


Buy it here:
Asthmatic Kitty Records

Friday, October 15, 2010

The Chariot - Long Live (new album leak)

The chariot, long live, album, download
click for more info

'Long Live' was born of an incredibly fluid process and attitude, according to Scogin. He also offered Noisecreep some teaser info about the record, which boasts a song that the band recorded live -- in one take. "This is nothing new to us, except in this instance we happen to record it on actually the first take, which is really exciting for us.

"This entire album has a very natural feel to it," Scogin said. "We never tried to force anything, just let it take place very spontaneously. On one song in particular, a friend of ours that goes by the name 'Listener' performed his poetry in the middle. It was a very casual and low-key sort of vibe [for] the entire process."

Read more here:


Zach Hill - Face Tat [FLAC]


Zach hill, face tat, album, vinyl, download, flac
*Click pic for more info

Finally got mine in the mail! Looks great, and it came with a T-shirt. Zach hill is one of my favorite musicians of the decade and this album doesn't disapoint. It's actually better than Astrological Straits. Cannot stop listening. Here's the looks:

Zach hill, face tat, album, vinyl
Zach hill, face tat, album, vinyl

You can listen to it and buy it at:


Sunday, October 10, 2010

Omar Rodriguez-Lopez Group Live in New York

This is a recording of the Omar Rodriguez-Lopez Group on 2010-09-17. I was at this show and it was really great.

Here is a really good quality bootleg from the show:


Friday, October 8, 2010

Les Rallizes Denudes - The Last One

Carson Mcwhirter

more info:


High Rise - Psychedelic Speed Freaks

high rise, psychedelic speed freaks, psf, japanese underground

Psychedelic acid rock-band from Japan. This Album is where the PSF label got their name from. High Rise is an explosive power trio comprised of bassist/vocalist asahito nanjo (南条麻人), guitarist Munehiro Narita, and a succession of drummers that has included Yuro Ujiie and Pill in the past and free-improv veteran Shoji Hano at present. High Rise mixes the jazz-influenced improvising of Cream with the brutal amphetamine-inspired rock of Blue Cheer.

A1 Make A Motion
A2 Acid Song
A3 Induced Depression
A4 Like Death
A5 Last Rites
A6 Psychedelic Speed Freaks
B1 Cycle Goodess
B2 Pop Sicle

Charles Mingus & Eric Dolphy - Cornell

jazz, charles mingus, eric dolphy, cornell, 1964

The band that Charles Mingus, the doyen of jazz's mercurial polymaths, pulled together for his early-1964 European tour was phenomenal—and here they are playing 130 minutes worth of live music no one’s ever heard. Pianist Jaki Byard, alto saxophonist/flutist/bass clarinetist Eric Dolphy, tenor saxophonist Clifford Jordan, trumpeter Johnny Coles, and longtime drummer Dannie Richmond came together for the Mingus tour knowing that Dolphy would be staying in Europe after their gigs—he died tragically just 12 weeks after this gig. And Coles would come perilously close to death himself with a stomach ulcer within a month of the band’s Cornell date, forcing him off the tour. So the music here is particularly special and musically resplendent. There is considerable overlap with the The Great Concert of Charles Mingus, but that 2-CD set is sans the ailing Coles, who fattens the sound here: playing beautifully as "Johnny O'Coles" on the unlikely "When Irish Eyes Are Smiling." But Eric Dolphy, his every breath is poetry: from his palpitating bass clarinet on the pugnacious "Fables of Faubus" to the tipsy, whirling flute he plays on "Jitterbug Waltz," a tune he loved playing. The sound here is less crisp than The Great Concert, thick in the middle and ill-defined when it comes to Richmond's drums, leaving the group's interplay like an ear-magnet. "Take the 'A' Train" pays soulful, blossoming homage to Billy Strayhorn even as you can hear the band tightening their grip collectively, learning to fly as a unit. Unheard music of this caliber demands a listen, and here the rewards are bountiful. --Andrew Bartlett

"Opening" – :16
"Atfw You" (Byard) – 4:26
"Sophisticated Lady" (Ellington, Mills, Parish) – 4:23
"Fables of Faubus" – 29:41
"Orange Was the Colour of Her Dress, Then Blue Silk" - 15:05
"Take the 'A' Train" (Strayhorn) - 17:26
"Meditations" - 31:23
"So Long Eric" - 15:33
"When Irish Eyes Are Smiling" - 6:06
"Jitterbug Waltz" (Waller) - 9:58

Frank Zappa - Lump Gravy

frank zappa, lumpy gravy

Was it that Zappa's music was so far ahead of its time, or was it just not what we thought a weirdo genius like him should be doing? Either way, since his death, his stature as a serious composer has grown. Lumpy Gravy missed most by a mile because it was the first of Zappa's 'challenging' orchestral pieces, and not what his audience had come to expect. Performed by the Abnuceals Emuukha Electric Symphony Orchestra & Chorus, it was a lengthy instrumental suite broken up by equally 'challenging' dialogue. On the back cover, Frank looks out and asks, 'is this phase 2 of We're Only In It For The Money?'. No, we don't think so.

Much of Zappa's orchestral music was strongly influenced by his love of Igor Stravinsky ballets such as The Rite of Spring. Earlier in his career Zappa wrote music for a few independently produced Hollywood films, such as The World's Greatest Sinner (1962) and Run Home Slow (1965). Lumpy Gravy is closely related to these early soundtrack works. The juxtaposition of highbrow and Pop art cultural influences was a radical idea at the time.