Thursday, 27 January 2011

Wax Works Discussed - Promo Failing

Saw this over at wax works, and its true!! Promoters need to stop this barrage on all media streams.... Anyway I saw this a found it interesting so I wanted to share with you guys....

This is something that I'm sure everyone is aware of, and I know that we get a pretty good laugh at most of them, but I think that it's about time someone asked 'what the fuck is going on?'

Far too often now, when a new night is announced, someone releases a record or has recorded a mix, you are greeted not only by the essential details of what's on but you are given a free history lesson on the DJ/Producer. Now this would be okay-ish if it gave you some interesting information but it is always the same generic, meaningless background story (filled with superlatives), and it keeps getting worse..

Now I'm sure that the majority of folk who do this, care about their nights and invest a lot of time, effort and money to put them on.. Why then, do they have absolutely no pride or shame when it comes to promoting it? Does it really mean THAT much to get more views on the forum?

Do they really think, that having a 2 page essay on DJ A is going to convince you to spend your money?

Maybe you think differently, but if I haven't heard of a DJ, a page of generic text is most definitely not going to change my mind about going to the gig, never mind the cringeworthy drivel that you get from some promoters.

So have a read at the next few quotes and decide for yourself. If you read this, does it have you convinced? or does it leave you wondering what the fuck they were thinking?

* All of these are real and relate to house and/or techno, and can be found online

"Both DJ's displayed a fantastic knowledge of tracks when they last played ?, so we couldn't think of better pair to link together to kick start the night"

And how did they display this knowledge? A quick Q&A? I think that displaying a fantastic knowledge of tracks is a little bit misleading...

"Glasgow based DJ ? is rapidly gaining a reputation for his talents playing tech music. Possibly the most versatile and technically talented DJ we've come across, able to play a set seamlessly, combining a variety of different styles, with ease. Be it techno, minimal, tech house or deep house, he'll play it, if the time is right, and the crowd wants it. "

I'm almost certain that was written by the DJ, but if it wasn't - why would you even think about having it on your profile?

Sometimes, no introduction is required."

This preceded 4 paragraphs about Ricardo Villalobos... c'mon?

"The ? lads have been putting in a sterling shift on the local club scene around Glasgow and have hosted some great nights around the city. Bringing something different to every night, the resident DJs mix it up with anything from Upfront House to some nice Techno beats adapting to give the crowd what they want. With their early success they have a promising future ahead, being booked to DJ at nights in 2011 such as ? & ? and supporting Stereofunks monthly residency @ Level 2."

I would read that one a few times..

"? talent knows no bounds, and musical knowledge is unsurpassed. To add to all this, his DJ talents are as impressive as his productions - can anything hold him back in 2011?!"

How can people write this and expect to be taken seriously?

There are tons of nights & DJs doing this kind of thing, most of them far too long to post on here, and I think it's getting out of hand... Seriously, get it together, it's embarrassing.

Wednesday, 26 January 2011

This Weekends Activities

Tribe Live Pres. Peven Everett @ The Relentless Garage, Saturday 29th.

Line Up
Peven Everett Full Live Band (Studio Confession Ent. Chicago)
DJs playing soul & funk before the show
Following the show, Tribe residents
Zepherin Saint and Matt L-S spinning deep soulful house

Time: 10pm - 4am
Venue: Relentless Garage, 20-22 Highbury Corner, London
Cost: £20 on the door

Double Trouble Vision Pt. 2 @ Corsica Studio, Saturday 29th.
Line Up
Theo Parrish
Motor City Drum Ensemble
Park Ranger

ROOM 2 - Hosted by AUS Music
Will Saul
Ramadanman (aka Pearson Sound)

Time: 10pm - 6am
Venue: Corsica Studios, Units 4/5 Elephant Road, SE17 1LB
Cost: £10 Early Bird, £12.50 Advance, MOTD Door

MUAK : Night & Day @ EGG, Saturday 29th.
Line Up

Time: 10pm - 12midday
Venue: 200 York Way, London N7.
Cost: £13.50 / £15 Tickets

Tuesday, 25 January 2011

Production Tips: Helpful all-round...

Saw This article over at nodoughmusic and thought of all the aspiring producers I know....... Heres some dope tips guys.... :-)

It’s the little things that matter most.

This week’s No Dough Music Blog focuses on the small things in a track, the little changes, instabilities and accidental mistakes which make some music great, and how extra attention to detail can really benefit your production.

Velocity & Modulation

These are both about movement, I touched on velocity in my previous blog and made quite a contentious point: that good music is "believable". I would like to clarify and expand on that idea a little.
When I referred to making your music more believable, I referred to the way our minds imagine and expect little traits found in the real world and in the way real things sound. I was not suggesting for example that all music should be comparable to something that could be done with instruments and a band.
In fact a better way of putting it would be to say, that even in the most fantastically unreal piece of music, whose sole intent is to take you to another world and sound like nothing else, even in that music we still look for the subtle variations in movement and tone that makes it sound alive and believable to us. Think of it as like the smaller details in a storybook that make the whole book's world come to life in our imagination.

Working in finer detail in terms of Velocity and Modulation can help foster an organic and fluid nature to your music. Songs that live forever as classics that you never get bored of are ALL about the small things, with an often obsessive attention to detail.

Playing Things In & Jamming.

If you have a midi keyboard this is a must, if you don’t then you must buy one. Getting your groove on and playing things in is one of the more fun ways of getting some humanity into your tracks. It Doesn't matter if you’re a virtuoso and it comes really easy to you (although that can help) or you’re new to the whole game and you find the whole concept daunting, don’t worry, even the most ham-fisted of us will find a lot of value in having a go.

Play in your percussive parts using a midi keyboard or some drum pads, record in your FX automation rather than program it in by hand. If you set up your project and your controllers in a sensible way, so as to give you hands on access to things like Delay Sends, Filter Cut-offs and Resonance, you will find things flowing more musically and just working out a lot easier and a lot quicker too, even if you do have to do some tidying up of the midi you recorded. What’s more, this improvisation can really help you stamp some individuality on your song and make it stand out. It's easy to get sucked into programming all your beats, and sometimes it’s impossible not to program them... but do take every opportunity to stamp your name on things where you can.

When working like this you will find that you automatically do a lot of things naturally without thinking, things that are incredibly musical, like varying the velocity of your percussion with the groove or subtle filter sweeps. A lot of stuff you do automatically would be incredibly complex to program from scratch. It's this you’re capturing, and it will translate directly into your music.

Vinyl under the microscope


Groove & Humanisation tools

Even on the earliest of Drum Machines there were always controls to add swing or shuffle and to Accent certain hits. It’s important to have a nice tight kick drum to drive the tracks on, but there’s something off-putting if everything is too straight and too static. Off-putting is probably the wrong word, boring is probably more apt. Even in the most industrial techno it is all about the groove, and often the groove is brought alive by some well-placed off-grid notes. Modern sequencers are a treasure trove when it comes to groove tools, often providing many different options to play around with. Do not under-use these tools. A touch of swing to your beats can be the difference between boring and engrossing, it’s as simple as that. Don’t be afraid to move notes by hand off the snap grid, or even play stuff in to find where the groove really comes together.

If you look at Abletons groove system each pre-set groove also features Velocity movements and the ability to add a little bit of Random movement in, which can be great to loosen things up a little. These controls are once again a way of replicating the things us humans do naturally.

But remember if a dead straight groove is part of your artistic direction, and you spend the time to make it sound interesting and work in your song then that’s not a crime either.

Variations & Repetitions

We all have shorter attention spans than we care to admit, and long unchanging, unemotional sections can make people literally stop listening. When listening to a demo, one of the first decisions a label's A&R guy will make is to ask himself is this interesting enough to continue listening.

Now there are a lot of elements that come together in the answer to that question, one of the main ones is the quantity and quality of variations in what’s going on in your track. Sometimes just changing one or two hits in your beat is enough; sometimes you will need to have a more extensive change in the form of a fill or a break to keep it going. Whatever you do, keep it changing, altering and moving, as the effect that change can have on how engrossing your music is can be powerful. Sometimes just moving away from the strong beat for a couple of bars and then coming back to that same beat can sound like a whole new section in itself. The best repetitive & hypnotic tracks are built on the suspense and tension built when going away from, and coming back to its main repetitive elements in subtle and less than subtle ways, or having the actual repeating element morph and change over time.


Layering is a very powerful tool if you want to build up a dense and interesting sonic "landscape" with your music. The subtle interactions and differences between 2 sounds when played together can add a bespoke sound to your music. Use filters and eq to allow different sounds to dominate different frequencies in your layered sound and create something much more complex and fresh.

Record, Jam & Improvise

As I mentioned earlier having a jam with your music, putting yourself in the position where you perform more of your music, is a great way to really add musicality and individuality to it. Sometimes once I have some basic ideas down, I will start by hitting record and doing a little performance with the Faders and the mutes, to see what kind of ideas I can get going for the arrangement. Some modern software even allows you to trigger specific elements or patterns.
By recording 30 minutes of pure improvisation in a rough form, you can often listen back and hear sections with good ideas that help you get a good foothold on your arrangement, and the ideas once again flow very naturally and musically compared to when you program things in.

The “Lucky Mistake”.

One thing that’s probably THE MOST IMPORTANT thing in music

“The Lucky Mistake”

We have all sat there, having worked for hours without much inspiration, and then suddenly we are enjoying an amazing sound coming from our speakers after accidentally knocking over a keyboard or hit the wrong key. Not really knowing how we made it but just enjoying it and then comes the flood of new ideas, buzzing around our minds.

Every single musician in the world has a story about some part in some track they made by accident and how it’s one of the parts they enjoy the most. The more you work and perform in little bits of your music, the more often you will have these inspiring little musical mistakes, if you are ever stuck on a song or you have started to feel jaded about it that’s the time to start ripping it apart and jamming with it...with record firmly switched on.
If you can't seem to find the right rhythm for your hats, record in a few minutes of you playing them in or if your breakdown and main section are not really cutting the mustard get playing with the faders and muting some parts and somewhere in there, you will find the answer...of that I am certain.

Monday, 24 January 2011

Pioneer's DDJ controller in action

By their own admission the audio is a bit rough, but this video shot by Skratchworx at last weekend's NAMM conference does at least give a pretty good overview of what the new pioneer controller looks and feels like.

Thursday, 20 January 2011

Download Mathias Shaffhäuser's live album

The idea for “In Concert” goes back to my first concerts in 2008 when I realized that this concept would just have to be recorded one day – it was such great fun right from the start and in this techno house circus I dare say, this is rather unheard of. Especially, however, because I gradually added more and more vocals and instruments to the set (a bluesharp, a melodica and percussion), which led to ever more specialized versions.

Around 70% of the concert you can listen to here was recorded at the club “Ilses Erika” in Leipzig, where I performed as part of the Popup Festival 2010. Some bits and tracks are taken from live gigs at the Zenzi Club in Mumbai (India), Maria am Ufer in Berlin and from the Suxul club in Ingolstadt. They were chosen simply because there was something special to them or because the Leipzig recording had dropouts or other little glitches that needed to be replaced. Other than that, there are no additional overdubs or corrections; the club vibe and the slightly rough sound were to stay intact. Only the vocals on “Confusion / Hey Little Girl” have been doubled as I couldn’t find a single recording on which my voice was loud enough. But even here, it was done without the usual studio tricks.

Under “free download” on the website you can not only find the entire live album, but also a pretty little make-it-yourself CD booklet for those who like to stick something on their shelf they can actually touch.

Along with this free album, Ware releases “In Concert EP 1” with an alternative live version of “Lost In The Pile / Well”, a one-track medley that I released with Alex Smoke in 2009, and the old blues piece “Well (Baby Please Don’t Go)”. In addition to my live version there are remixes by the Cologne-Berlin techno super gang Brandt/Brauer/Frick, Paulice from Argentina (Adjunct Rec.) and by Pedramovich (Mixed In Sheffield Rec.). In March, look forward to “In Concert EP 2” with a new version of “Nice To Meet You” and several remixes by Markus Guentner and others. Links to the shops where you can purchase these EPs are listed under “buy”.

And now: enjoy the music.

Besides rocking the computer,
Mathias performs live on track...

01 lead vocals and keyboards
02 backing vacals and piano
03 lead vocals and small shaker
04 bass syntheziser
05 girly vocals and blues harp
06 big shaker and toy melodica
07 lead vocals
08 spoken words
09 tambourine + yeah yeahs
10 lead + dubbed vocals + keyboard
11 lead vocal


01 „Nice To Meet You“
feat. elements of „Graupause“
00:00:00 – 00:06:04 h

02 “m².02.02”
M. Schaffhäuser Remix (original version by m²);
feat. elements of “BeBobDeLuxe”
00:06:04 – 00:13:41 h

03 “Life”
00:13:41 – 00:21:00 h

04 “Syntagma”
(Original version by M. Schaffhäuser & Ziggy Kinder)
00:21:00 – 00:25:32 h

05 “Mönk Mönk”
00:25:32 – 00:28:56 h

06 “No Reduction”
M. Schaffhäuser Remix
(original version by [A]pendics.Shuffle)
00:28:56 – 00:36:11 h

07 “Lost In The Pile / Well (Baby Please Don’t Go)”
(original version by M. Schaffhäuser & Alex Smoke)
00:36:11 – 00:44:22 h

08 “Gott ist tot”
00:44:22 – 00:50:34 h

09 “Miles Over Zero”
00:50:34 – 01:00:16 h

10 “Confusion”
(original version by M. Schaffhäuser & Markus Guentner);
feat. “Hey Little Girl” and “Epitaph”
01:00:16 – 01:07:57 h

11 “Coincidance”
Trentemøller Remix;
feat. elements of “Truthology”

01:07:57 – 01:14:25 h

Download Mathias Shaffhäuser's live album

Wednesday, 19 January 2011

This Weekends Activities

Fill Yer Boots presents Wolf Music with Krl and Greymatter @ Plan B, 22nd Jan.

Line Up

Matt Neale
Daniel Ghazvinie

Time:9pm - 5am
Venue:Plan B, 418 Brixton Road, Brixton, London, SW9, UK

£5 on the door