A 5 minute piece from William Kentridge. Doctors multiply over a body ribcaging the apparatus of business. Animus. Animation. Smudges define us.
New York Times love, followed by European tour dates.
[New York Times: Kyle Dean Reinford/Sonarsound]
And a few days later there appeared a very nice review & photo of my SONAR set. The event was a blast, thanks to everyone who came out (like Lou Reed!) and raved on a Tuesday night.
Jon Pareles’ SONAR review ended with:
“DJ/Rupture played strategically plotted but constantly surprising international mashups: a pitch-shifted “Standing in the Shadows of Love” vocal matched to a dancehall reggae bass line, cumbia accordions cascading over thumping electro beats, “Walk Like an Egyptian” with a sitar line tucked in. His music was plugged into ideas from around the globe; it also got people dancing.”
it was my last NYC gig for a minute — here’s info on my upcoming European tour:
May 29 – Berlin. The Bug w/ Flow Dan, Kid606, DJ Rupture, Sick Girls, Christoph de Babylon. big party!
May 30 – Barcelona. Primavera Sound. big festival! i play on the Pitchfork stage, right after Ghostface Killa.
June 5 – Mulhouse France. w/ CIAFRICA & Babylon Residence.
June 6 – Helsinki. my first time in Finland! Basso festival.
then a series of duo gigs with Andy Moor.
June 9 – Amsterdam. OCCII. w/ Brent Arnold
June 10 – Tilburg. 013
June 11- Den Haag. Paard v Troje
June 12 – Amsterdam. solo DJ set. OT301 Exploder night
June 13 – Brussels. duo set, late nite solo DJ set.
Note: this is not Andy Moor
Long story short: I recently put together a ‘hackintosh’ computer — Macintosh software on PC parts. It’s running OS X Leopard and cost me $325. I kept the price low by salvaging parts from an old PC. 4 gigs of RAM, duo-core processor, the whole deal. Fast. Cheap.
Hackintosh construction is a gray zone, no doubt about that. Info scatters across a handful of forums and sites. Since it involves shoehorning Apple’s operating system into a hodge-podge of PC components, everyone’s experience differs, and most of the online discussion is very technical, with lots of snippety moderators who have little time for folks like me who are in way over their heads.
I wouldnt (read: can’t) pay Macintosh hardware prices, so the inexpensive Frankensteined hackintosh was a fantastic option. I’m proud to say it runs smoothly (ok, the machine can’t “sleep”, but all else is stable and transparently Mac). Plus I get the pleasure of sneaking high-end software inside a banged up, taped-up, dusty, stained old PC case.
I did this primarily to use Logic 8, a nice piece of music production software that used to be for Windows and Mac, until Apple bought it and promptly discontinued the Windows version.
Logic is Matt Shadetek’s weapon of choice, and my other musical partner Andy Moor uses it as well, so I figured it was finally time to get on the same page as them to facilitate collabo.
If you’re curious, I found this overview to be quite helpful, and this page helped out immensely with my particular hardware combo. (I used the hackintosh-friendly Gigabyte G31M-ES2L motherboard and an nvidia 7300GT video card.)
Bob Marley casts a long shadow. Most reggae influenced music from locales without a substantial Caribbean population takes its cues from roots reggae. In much of the world, it’s as if 1985’s Sleng Teng revolution never happened, with ‘reggae’ bands still playing cover songs from twenty or thirty years back.
On the flip side, there are hotspots – in Germany, corners of Africa, Yokohama, etc. – where the scene is shockingly up-to-date, contemporaneous, apace.
But that’s rare in Morocco, where ‘reggae fusion’ usually means rootsy cheese, or at least dubby cliches. So it’s refreshing to hear a Moroccan-Parisian take on UK steppas (i’ll take whatever i can get, patiently waiting for Stephen McGregor’s influence to go global) —[audio:Gnawa_Njoum-Kami_Ni_Mantara.mp3]
+ + +
2 mambo tunes for you. The first is a flu song — a pre swine-flu flu song! Complete with coughing & sneezes. Salud! “I’ve got flu. Ha-choo.” Sickness turns audible. Manicomio means nuthouse; NYC’s Manikkomio are disturbing, both unintentionally and on-purpose. They are cute beefy young men who perform with ‘Jason’ Friday the 13th hockey masks on, often shirtless and/or in (more) S&M gear. Totally gay? Ultramacho heteros? Semi-closeted merengue-club? Please advise. Manikkomio’s myspace crashes my web browser sometimes.
& then DJ Ricky. He does a lot of production for Omega and is generally fantastic (he has earned the right to call himself El Rey del Mambo, not that kind of Mambo King.), with a special talent for making songs feel like they’re constantly accelerating. This one’s a rush-[audio:Atacando a los Mambero.mp3]
post-SONAR, my mind continues being melted by Junji Ito’s Uzumaki, an incredible, meticulously imagined narrative in the form of a Japanese horror manga. “Spiral into horror.” (shout to Matt Madden for the tip)
I don’t usually remember my dreams. But for the last week, I’ve been dreaming – and remembering – horrible things: a friend stabbed to death, car accidents, waiting for police to arrive after something dreadful has occurred. Fair chance Ito is the source.
Esopus is an art magazine, in the sense of magazine-as-art. The current issue contains a CD. They asked a group of musicians to select a black & white film to serve as inspiration for a song. I chose Luis García Berlanga’s El Verdugo (1963). It’s worth seeing. Berlanga made several impressive movies, not an easy feat under Franco, and much can be said about this one, although not by me at 2am…
7. ‘El Verdugo’ by DJ/RUPTURE. The business of death is the central framework of El Verdugo (1963), the pitch-black comedic tale of José Luis Rodríguez, in which a young undertaker (Nino Manfredi) agrees to take on the job of a retiring executioner in order to marry his daughter Carmen (Emma Penella). Through his characteristically brilliant use of samples (including the evocative creaking of a cemetary gate he recorded in Lodes, Spain), DJ/rupture holds a sonic mirror up to the dark, fractured world of this cult classic.”
[El Verdugo screenshot]
the Disquiet blog hosts a brief excerpt. Listening back to it makes me want to gather the noise/ambient/texture pieces I’ve done, make some new ones, and release them as an album. Tentative title: Soap Bleach Softener.
(In other non-news about albums which don’t yet exist: an offhand comment by Geoff at Postopolis has sparked a massive ‘preemptive soundtrack’ concept… recording starts in June, details soon. Think ‘resplendor’.)
Esopus is having an issue launch party at NYC’s Housing Works Bookstore Cafe (an oasis of sorts, great place) this Wednesday, May 13 7-9pm.
first up, chaabi, because we miss Barcelona. I’m reading a book with a character named Thomas Lull and I keep thinking it should be Llull. This will make sense if you’ve lived there for awhile. I love the double ‘ll’ in Catalan, words like Llum (light), also a woman’s name. I’ll be playing a 2-hour set at the free SONAR party next Tuesday, will sneak in some Barcelona Maghrebi stuff.[audio:https://negrophonic.com/mp3/Abdelhak Laaroussi – Chaabi.mp3]
Then, eastward. This is the sound of reggada thinking about itself, with hesitation and repetition, probably the way we all think about ourselves. Structurally ripe for DJ use.[audio:https://negrophonic.com/mp3/Reggada-Instrumental.mp3]
And a less existential reggada song, unselfconscious. From ‘La Nouvelle Génération’, a comp CD I picked up in Bay Ridge (Brooklyn):[audio:https://negrophonic.com/mp3/Kirat_Mamma.mp3]
[“Happy Cinco de Mayo” from Tray]
Head to La Congona for my Cinco de Mayo special, 6 cumbias 4 May 5th!
On Wednesday, May 6th, 7-8PM EST, Raquel Z. Rivera and Wayne & Wax, co-editors of the new ‘Reggaeton’ book, will be joining me live in studio for Mudd Up! radio (WFMU 91.1 FM NYC, streaming worldwide, no te lo pierdas!) !
From Panamanians to Playeros to post-DemBoleros, they’ll be spinning rarities alongside discussion of the genre’s complex roots and current possibilities.
on Flickrlandia, Logan Mills reimagines Wu Tang LP artwork as Blue Note classics:
[Logan Mills Wu Tang redesign]
[Logan Mills Wu Tang redesign]
The Berbers, cracked audio plug-in software, Donna Haraway circa 1991, Jody Rosen contemplating drained negro emotionalism, a high-end recording engineer, Tallahassee Pain, a Muslim producer named Wary: AUTO-TUNE UNITES US ALL.
This is another way of saying: check out my essay on Auto-Tune for the current issue of Frieze Magazine.
Auto-Tune is something I’ve been thinking about – and chasing after – for awhile now. It was a great pleasure to be able to condense my thoughts on it, which began a half-dozen years or more, picking up auto-tuned Berber music in Barcelona & Madrid.
Vocal purists hate Auto-Tune. They hear in its robotic modulations some combination of sugar-rush novelty, bulldozed nuance, jejune synthetics, loss of ‘soul’, disdain for innate vocal talent, teen-optimized histrionics, emotional anemia, and/or widespread musical decline. It’s ugly.