Sunday, 17 December 2017

Feelin' Festive

Eyvind Earle - Black Evergreen Forest (1981)


I was so excited to sit down and write an holiday themed post this year. Last night I could have sworn I had a ton of festive related tunes to share but it seems that's not the case this morning. Ah well, I suppose I can revisit the few I do have just this once. Stating off with a gorgeous piece of synth noodling from the Röyksopp boys. A nice blend of traditional and non-traditional, being a cover of Cantique de Noel and all, and it sure beats the same roster of xmas tunes that have been in circulation for the last few decades.

Röyksopp - Le Cantique de Noel [click to download] |HTML5|


Speaking of untraditional, something I've been holding onto for a couple years now. Simon Viklund, my favourite Swedish soundtrack source made this EDM infused, Payday-ified remix of Jingle Bells. Truth be told it ain't half bad, putting the irony aspect aside for a minute it's a solid example of Viklund doing what he does best. Keep this one in your pack for any December raves you have coming up, it'll go down a treat.

Simon Viklund - Pimped Out Getaway [click to download] |HTML5|


And finally a turn to the downtempo. Taken from one of the soundtrack albums for Ghost In The Shell: Stand ALone Complex (though I'm not sure it appeared in the series), which are chock full of electronic goodness. I owe Yoko Kanno thanks for not only the soundtrack but for introducing me to Ilaria Graziano through them. She's got a killer voice that shines especially on songs like this, I like to compare it to Homogenic era Björk as a reference.

Yoko Kanno - Christmas In The Silent Forest [click to download] |HTML5|


Sunday, 10 December 2017

Chilly Out (2017 Re-Post)

Note from Claude: Hi all! I'm currently laid up with a intense migraine and the weather's shite, but I've managed to glance up at a screen long enough to dig up this post from 2015 which I'm re-posting to fill in for my usual selections on a Sunday. Thanks to technology for allowing me to write this bit using speech to text, enjoy the trip down memory lane and I'll be back next week with the usual.

Oh boy has the cold come home fast. 0 to frosty mornings overnight, which means it's finally time to do my annual tradition of prepping winter playlists. Let's get right on in.

Gustave Caillebotte - View Of Rooftops (Effect Of Snow) (1878/9)

After my recent trip into the world of what electropop I have in my collection thanks to a soundcloud roundup I've been crushing on my long time favourites Broadcast once again. I've written pretty extensively about my love for them, and I won't repeat myself here, instead enjoy the wintery tones of the penultimate track of Haha Sound.

Broadcast - Winter Now [click to download] |HTML5|


To that end, a long lost relic from 2008/9 popped back up on that search. Honestly surprised it took so long to come back up, I haven't heard anything from Youth Novels for about 3 years despie daily shuffling o fmy entire library. But it came back, and ho boy these feelings and memories hit pretty hard. I'll have to catch up with Ms. Li sometime soon.

Lykke Li - Dance, Dance, Dance [click to download] |HTML5|


Of course Boards Of Canada were on the lineup for a cold playlist, I'm still amazed at some of the tracks they have tucked away on obscure, often unreleased albums. I've covered a few of the tunes from the aptly named Old Tunes tapes a while ago, but as of right now I'm digging Boc Maxima, and reminding myself of why Whitewater is one of my favourite pieces of BoC.

Boards Of Canada - Whitewater [click to download] |HTML5|




-Claude Van Foxbat

Sunday, 3 December 2017

A Belated Pod (Or Two)

Apologies in advance for this one, I completely forgot to post the last couple podcasts myself and Adam did. To be fair it was 3 months ago and I was busy in the throes of my new job (and dealing with a broken hand + elbow on opposite arms). We haven't recorded since but we're both fairly busy with life things atm, still I should reach out to him and hopefully we can get another one out before the end of the year (I probably shouldn't have said it won't be so long before the next one in hindsight...).

in the meantime though, here are our two solo episodes we recorded due to schedule issues. First up, Me! Again, apologies for the slightly naff audio quality from me, I'm recording these on my G430s, which might be good for counter strike but not so much Podcast recording. I might sound a little worse than Adam's setup but the tunes will shine through methinks. Tracklist after the embed:

Tracklist:
Intro:
Siriusmo - Nights Off
HEALTH - Stonefist
Leila - Welcome To Your Life
Maya Jane Coles - Over
Funkstörung - Disconnected
Adam's Outro:
Octo Octa - New Paths

And also Adam's. I gave it a listen while I was transcribing the track-list. Adam's tunes are a lot longer than mine but that's not a complaint whatsoever, I enjoy what he brings to the table too, sometimes I feel like you can get stuck in a rut of 'recommended artists' from Spotify and the like, so having Adam come in with cuts like these is refreshing to say the least. My choice pick would be the Addvibe tune, definitely stick around for that.


Tracklist:
Intro:
Phuture - Your Only Friend
Decoy - Imp Overlord Dub
Addvibe - Sada (N'Dinga Gaba Diplomacy Soul remix)
Johnick - C'mon Give It Up
Pablo Valentino - One (Detroit Swindle Perspective)
Outro:
DJ Red Alert & Mike Slammer - In Effect

-Claude Van Foxbat

Sunday, 26 November 2017

My Hearing Is Augmented


I've mentioned in the past how much I adore the original Deus Ex's soundtrack. parts of it are limited and a little dated sounding tanks to being an unreal engine game fro m'99 but the atmosphere is there. Fast Forward to a couple days ago where I was made aware of this little project by OCRemix, I've heard of them in the past but never dug too deep. So I was interested a little, which only increased when I read that one of the original composers was a collaborator too. I checked it out and I'm digging it, so now I'm going to give a rundown of some of my favourites from it!

It kicks off with a drum & bass treatment of one of my original faves, NYC Streets. The original OST had bits and pieces of Drum & Bass style things in it, (after all games like System Shock 2, which was full of techno and drum and bass too also came out in '99) but it's still interesting to compare and contrast the difference in styles, both when freed of technical restraints of being implemented into a game engine and with the passage of time. Oh, and the download comes with a readme of artist comments too which I really, really dig. I'll be putting them in quotes before the players.

"zircon: As with the entire Deus Ex soundtrack, "NYC Streets" is extremely atmospheric and creates a wonderful, dark mood. With this remix, I wanted to expand on that feeling and create a sense of motion, energy, and action befitting of a cyberpunk adventure. Jill lent her voice to the track with airy pads, solo improvisation and melody to help add even more of an organic feel to the heavily electronic instrumental."


zircon & Jillian Aversa - The Search For Ambrosia (NYC Streets) [click to download] |HTML5|


It's not limited to the first game however, our next one comes from the (not as well received) sequel Invisible War, which to be fair has a decent soundtrack also. I disagree with some points mentioned by Level 99 in the artists statement. It doesn't feel particularly 'Blade Runner' aside from the title (though I will concede going full Vangelis on this would have been a mite cliche). And second I don't think the tune's very hopeless feeling at all, I could easily (and have) chucked it into a cozy downtempo and trip hop playlist and it'd fit in just fine. Not to dwell on the negativity too much though, the tune itself is very gorgeous to listen to, and I absolutely adore that outro with the final key synced with the thunder.

"Level 99: "Tears in Rain," as implied by the title, was inspired by Blade Runner. Deus Ex has always had the feel of a Ridley Scott movie to me, and I derived inspiration from that as well as from the soundtracks of Thomas Newman, particularly Road to Perdition. There's this abject hopelessness throughout much of the series, and I tried to capture that here. While I didn't play Invisible War as much as the original Deus Ex, this song always stood out to me as being especially gorgeous in its mystique and sound design."


Level 99 - Tears In Rain (Seattle - Lower Seattle & Heron's Loft) [click to download] |HTML5|


Returning to a more electronically oriented piece for my last pick. That sweeping into ticks all of my electronic, sci-fi and cyberpunk buttons in one stroke, Ma Chérie Nicolette incorporates both the theme of the eponymous Nicolette DuCLare's chateau but also the main theme of Deus Ex itself later on, which combined with the overall synthwavy feel of the thing makes for an interesting rework of the two. Jimmy Hinson doesn't have much to say about the tune in the accompanying artists readme which is a shame, especially given that this is one of the tunes with the original composer featuring too. I can relate though, it is sometimes difficult to talk about your process or any meanings behind your work. Still, the tune's a worthy addition to the compilation.

Alexander Brandon & Jimmy Hinson - Ma Chérie Nicolette (DuClare Chateau, Main Title) [click to download] |HTML5|


So those are my choice picks from the comp, I should have maybe started by saying this but here goes anyway: If you've like what you heard here, you can pick up the Sonic Augmentation compilation for the low price of absolutely *free* from this page on OCRemix. It even comes with album art (and multiple choices of album art to boot!) if you're a bit of a stickler for that like myself. I hope you enjoyd and I'll see y'all next week with more selections.

-Claude Van Foxbat