Monthly Archives: February 2007

ATLAS IMPRESSIONISTIK

“Don’t ask me about any of these Berber cassettes,” said Rachid’s asssitant at Nassiphone (BCN’s best shop for Maghrebi sound) as he hefted a milkcrate from behind the counter. “I know as much as you do.” Meaning: very little.

the cover of this cassette depicts Mr Tamount seated, a capoed & fretted banjo loose in his hands. The orange photoshop blur behind him anticipates vocoders and drum machines coded into Berber patterns. Imazighen.

Idriss Tamount – ? (Box Music)

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For those who prefer less processed roots…

Amazigh band and dancers in the Atlas foothills, scattering timeless sound into the air with generator-powered amps. I enjoy watching the notion of a mainstream dissolve into a trillion scattered data-bites. Let’s dance on a red rug in wilderness!

The best part about YouTube is the impressionistic quality of its compression algorhythms… YouTube is always more storytelling than documentary. Suggests, does not inform.

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In this clip, a string player & vocalist the size of Godzilla perform over a rich evergreen forest while alien geometries intersect the landscape. Visuals a strange but not unsatisfying partner for the ensemble’s Berber folklorix.

MUDD RADIO: RUPTURE & MATT SHADETEK

Tomorrow, Saturday Feb 24th, I’m hosting the ‘listener hour’ at WFMU, 9-10am. Streaming. Matt Shadetek (of Team Shadetek) will be the special guest, playing us some exclusive productions & chatting about his new album on Sound Ink, transatlantic bass shipments, and (if we’re lucky) what’s up with that Homeland Insecurity cop footage at the end of Shadetek’s fun & powerful future-now rockers video. check it — Brooklyn Anthem ft. 77Klash & Jah Dan:

I’ll be muddying up the airwaves with some dubstep & DMZ ruffage in anticipation of Dave Q’s DubWar party at Tonic happening later that day – he’s brought over Mala (Digital Mystikz) & Loefah.

COUGH COUGH. ARE WE ON?

post a GIF from 2005, walk away, then BAM — BoingBoing sends 25,000+ new visitors in the space of a few hours. Viral culture goes to whoever coughs the most.

I just finished remixing Architecture in Helsinki. their super-strong original tune required the heavy artillery so i brought in my favorite Trinidadian Brooklynite Mr Lee G for rmx vocals and fires broke out! i’ll play it, along with some other exclusives & dubplates, on WFMU this Saturday, 9am-10am. Listener hour! when civilians like me are allowed to take over the airwaves. worldwide streaming furthers diasporic bass. Trying to lock down some special guests, too…

Droid beefs up the Blogariddims series with an hour of late80s-early90s digital dancehall!! I love this stuff. The first song, a leftfield classic by Papa San, warrants the whole download.

ok…, must report to the water cage, more turkish music soon come

MUDD MOBILE

I’m pretty comfortable with my body, so I don’t mind working in the T-Mobile cage. I try to treat nudity naturally. I never exploit it like the brunette Nokia saleswoman in the water cage next to mine. You wouldn’t believe what I’ve seen happen by her cage! Me? I don’t stare. I’m just here to help people communicate. I think that’s why I like blogging about my daily life too: it helps me communicate. And besides, the manager lets me wear polo shirts. Today I’m rocking a cobalt blue Le Tigre with the collar popped. It covers one thing I’m insecure about — my nipples. Someone said they were small once.

Of course, there are some creeps who just come to peer into our cages. They’ll bite their lips and stare at our mud-spattered thighs, oglers. These people probably already own cellphones. Sometimes the customers are naked too though — it makes sense — you come to the swamp electronics store and you’re guaranteed to ruin a pair of shoes.

I used to recommend the T-Mobile SDA phone. I mean, c’mon! It’s got wi-fi, bluetooth, and runs Windows Mobile. Once you get a 2gig memory card, you can use it as an iPod. The phone is normal size, not all big like a Blackberry or Treo. If you sign up for T-Mobile service, the phone is FREE, provided you correctly fill out the $50 cash-back rebate paperwork. Great, right?

Now I’m not so sure. The buttons are tiny. Whenever you’re in a hurry Windows Mobile freezes up. You gotta dig through 5 different sub-menus to access the alarm clock, and then the alarm clock is DAILY, so if you turn it off when you wake up, you’ll still need to access those 5 different sub-menus and deactivate the damn thing or it’ll wake you up the next day too.

Now I stand there, naked, half-covered in mud… Seeing myself the way the customers see me. I don’t know which phone is best. I want to curl up and burrow, let the swamp cover my nakedness with its ooze.

Steve in the Verizon cage does it different. He’s muscular, well-hung, veiny. When his Nina Simone impersonation sounds out through the new Verizon Karaoke Pak with water-resistant portable speakers, even the straight guys stir, little butterflies beating against their heart cages. That Verizon dude sounds just like Anthony and the Johnsons! they say.

And there are perks. Friends visit. Anne had eight dollars. I was prepared to cut her a deal on a cellphone charger but she uses Cingular. Proprietary chargers are so stupid. “You’ll have to visit Michell’s water cage instead,” I said. “Thanks for the chapbook! And good luck with your cell phone charger.” It’s hard to give specific directions in the swamp, but I sent her in the right direction. Anne thanked me and said “Good luck with your tour.” At first I thought she was naked too, then I realized that she was wearing an open-ish nude colored crocheted dress, the kind that disappears when cops come by, cruising for trouble.

SAFE?

Raz Mesinai, a friend, is Badawi, and Badawi is Safe. And what is safe?? at least — A gorgeous piece of work released in 2005 given to me by Raz yesterday.

check it

Badawi – Sound On Its Echoing

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… and today’s NYT casts a long ink shadow on DJ Drama & the mixtape bizness.*

Samantha Shapiro overviews the territory, like the music industry itself, not wanting to delve too deep into the Kafka element that close examination of this warrants. Although there are moments: “…they were part of an alternative distribution system that the mainstream record industry uses to promote and market hip-hop artists. Drama and Cannon have in recent years been paid by the same companies that paid Kilgo to help arrest them.”

(Kilgo is short for Kilgore Trout.)

* note: to bypass nyt and other ‘registration’ silliness, the bugmenot firefox extension works well. non-firefoxies can use regular bugmenot for the same.

MOTHER RADIO CAUTIONARY

Late November Gregory Whitehead visited New York City’s New School to participate in a panel on “Radio Communities: The Other Side of the Electronic Divide.” (i confused the schedule & arrived long after he’d ended… Although i got there in time to see a man praise community radio using powerpointed Smiling African Children tourist snapshots and vague, rosy statistics about the social benefits of FM broadcasts among unspecified half-literate people pioneering their own future in unspecified sunny countries.)

Gregory – I’ve written about him here & here – passed me a PDF of his talk for the evening. MuddUp exclusive! Excerpt below. Or grab the whole thing.

In summary, Gregory’s one of the only people writing about radio’s artistic and political potential with sensitivity to the medium’s uncanny & unique essence. (I’m always hungry to hear more radio art, broadcast activism… so many unexplored possibilities. any good shows/artists to recommend? terrestrial fm, podcasters, whatever)

“After twenty some odd years in and around the world’s cacophonous airwaves, I have been there, many times over, inside that inscrutably ambiguous envelope of the simple dot dot dot … because it turns out that the artist’s dream of radio eros and the dictator’s dream of radio thanatos are one and the same, the first being the finger puppet, the second its dancing shadow, or bouncing echo. Or is it the other way around?

Demagogues may well create radio stations to disseminate their monomania, but radio stations may also create demagogues, possibly even from the ranks of those who used to call themselves radio artists, once upon a time, and it is the pure hypnotic power of the beautiful dream, the dream that communication equals community, the dream that everyone is coming, in all races, and all languages, that sets the stage for the power mad despot to do his thing, in a major key.

Radio eros, and radio thanatos: the two vibrational drives, always present, always in the air, on the loose, saving and sinking, laughter and oblivion, whispers and screams, so humbling in their persistence, and their power. For the broadcast activist and the radio artist, the question is always the same. Can we hear the truth in their seductive and dangerous interplay, and what do we make of it?”

-Gregory Whitehead, Here Comes Everybody

BACK TO AFRICA (VIA FRENCH CANADA)

What’s coming? Well i’ve got translations and PDFs (Remember bloggers: PDFs are the new MP3s) and music from beyond the edge of Europe so sweet it brings a tear to the eye, but before all that, a little ‘my comrades have bass big-uppage':

I always said that Ghis was a ninja. The 2nd volume of his African hiphop mix aired on Mary Anne Hobbes BBC show last week. Downloadable. On the same show, Mary debuted Maga Bo‘s Nahkil featuring new school Moroccan rap heroes Bigg & K-Libre, a tune from his upcoming 12” on Soot. It’s a banger…

I branded or stamped each record jacket of this 12” with the Arabic word for ‘soot’, a time-intensive, dangerous process that I can’t recommend to anyone, unless you are crazy, which I must have been, to have spent hours working hot metal over a stove during a Mediterranean heat wave, windows shut tight so no breeze could disturb the oven’s flame. But there is something, something to be said for labor-intensive projects that leave you with minor burns and less money than when you started. Right? at least it’s a good record.

Oh yeah, the Maga Bo 12” that’ll be released after this one (in plain black ‘jace-is-now-too-sane-to-brand’ sleeves) has vox by Senegal’s Pee Froiss and a potent remix by… mr. Ghislain Poirier. Full circle, sort-of.
/end Ghis fan blog

METALLIC VIBRATIONS & GOOD APOCALYPSE MEDIA THEORY

Didac writes gently and poetically on distortion in Timbuktu, en español. i’ll find time to translate this.

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From Iowa (an equally exotic location), Anne distorts gentlemanly poetics and launches a thought-raft into the future, the grubby future //

A few days ago, Turkish friends in Berlin shared 6 gigabytes (!) of carefully selected Turkish & Balkan music with me. The hard drive folder was labeled For Repture by a guy whose name I couldn’t spell, either. Cross the Bosphorus, letters slip.

might as well dive in… with badass saz player Arif Sağ. Here’s some breathtaking youtubery. The stately saz incandescently played on a prosaically irreal stage-set as the TV screen clocks Istanbul’s unchanging temp.:

the saz already resonates with telltale metallic soul. Plug it in, amplify — fx pedals optional — and you’ve got electro saz.

Arif Sağ – Bahi Sabah from the Lambaya Puf De CD

NOTE the little blue arrow-thingy!! You can now use this Flash-player to preview MP3s before downloading.

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good apocalypse media theory (the sheep look up):

The idea that the poem of the future is a poem written by a programmer with her machine is an extension of the fantasy of the eternal life of the ephemeral stuff of first world living: fossil fuels, reliable power grids, stable climatic conditions, liberal democracies.

The poems of the future are more likely to be carved into junk-plastic rafts by refugees fleeing viral epidemics on wasted seas.

For my poem of the future I plan to lay out a pattern of trashed computer monitors, creating a pixellated vision of a poem from broken/not broken screens, and as the wealthy flee plagues and terrorist attacks in their private airplanes they can see this poem of the future from the sky they own.

Programmers and their machines do not create the poems of the future, they create the poems of the present. This might also be said of the lesser poetic technologists, those who google sculpt or employ social software for generative results, those who work in flash or code or photoshop or garageband.

-Boyer, Odalisqued
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