Thursday, April 26, 2007

a drift on the signal

A few years ago I became fascinated by the release of The Conet Project, recordings of the famous short-wave "numbers" stations, rumored to be operated by various covert intelligence operations. These stations transmit in different languages, employing male and female voices repeating strings of numbers or phonetic letters day and night, all year round. The recordings a very spooky.

I've used these recordings in a few mixes & was always interested in exploring other shortwave recordings. Then a few weeks ago I came across the SHORTWAVEMUSIC blog. Run by Myke Weiskopf, the blog is dedicated to music and/or musical noise intercepted via shortwave radio. These musical recordings feature a bit of noise, hum, drift & interference. But that's exactly what makes them so haunting. The washes of static mix wonderfully with a Sudanese oud player or Qu'ran chants or post-Soviet melancholia.

I highly recommend heading over to Myke's blog and taking some time to browse through his amazing collection of 'shortwave music'. Two of my favorite posts are "the Dream"(6th from the bottom) and Post-Soviet Melancholia, Part IV(about halfway down, July 29th 2005).

Myke also has a CD available that I just bought. It is an interesting collection of tunes, quite a wide variety of styles & sounds. He, of course, uses shortwave in some of the tracks. I used two cuts from the cd in this new mix. You can find info about the album here. Myke's myspace page is here.

I used quite a few clips from the Shortwavemusic blog in this new mix. The rest of the music is just some stuff I came across that I thought would work well with the shortwave feel. I just had to use Basinski's "The River" as it was constructed from shortwave recordings. I figured this mix was probably my only chance to use The Bulgarian Women's Choir singing one of my favorite choral pieces. I think it fits perfectly. I really wanted to get something in there from William Fields' cd, "Timbre". It's a good ambient, glitchy work on the Gears of Sand label. I was also happy to squeeze in some Bexar Bexar form the excellent new release, "Tropism".

Around 19 minutes into the mix is some music from My Fun. You can download the latest EP, idyll, at the net label Test Tube. My two favorite Ukrainian shortwaves occur at around 15:10 - 17:21 and 48:00 - 50:27.

The start & stop times for the tracks may be a little confusing. That's because of the fluid nature of this mix. Multiple tracks fading in & out at various times. I like the mix & hope you do too. Thanks again to Myke Weiskopf for all the great shortwave recordings.

- - - - Download it here - - - -
a drift on the signal

T R A C K L I S T :
00:00 - 00:30 interval signal
00:21 - 02:43 Alva Noto - haliod xerrox copy 4
02:03 - 02:54 E3 Lincolnshire Poacher
02:47 - 04:21 Myke Weiskopf - interlude 18
04:00 - 08:14 Radio Cairo
04:35 - 08:31 Chronomad - se
07:54 - 09:52 Talvin Singh - kalpataru
08:37 - 10:28 Jordan
09:26 - 12:08 Sheila Chandra - ABoneChroneDone #1
11:13 - 12:25 Radio Bulgaria
11:54 - 15:28 Bulgarin Women's Choir - Polegnala e Toudora
15:10 - 17:21 Radio Ukraine International
17:07 - 19:19 Myke Weiskopf - interlude #2 : faders
18:51 - 22:33 My Fun - Black Sky
22:21 - 25:18 tu m' - talking walking
24:30 - 26:40 China Radio International - Guqin Music
26:18 - 31:41 Bexar Bexar - unsettled & unable
30:30 - 32:49 Family Radio Int'l
31:30 - 37:32 William Basinski - The River(exerpt)
36:32 - 37:06 Yankee Bravo
38:04 - 38:44 Conet Project - Russian Lady
36:58 - 41:34 O Yuki Conjugate - In Dreams, Perhaps
38:52 - 40:03 Qu'ran chants via BSKSA (Riyadh)
40:56 - 41:39 Conet Project - Czech Lady
41:14 - 44:52 Electric Birds - vox canon
43:49 - 44:20 Conet Project - tcp d1 16 attencion 3 finds irdial
44:05 - 48:02 Andrew Pekler - sleepless
47:53 - 48:13 4931 0925 May 10 03
48:00 - 50:27 Ukraine
50:11 - 54:19 William Fields - indra
52:15 - 53:54 Ney Performer from Azerbaijan
53:14 - 58:45 M. Bentley - Time (fabricated)
58:10 - 1:02:30 Tim Hecker - Pluie 2

Thursday, April 05, 2007

New cd's

I've been listening to a couple excellent cd's the past few days & because they are on small record labels I figured I'd give them a big recommendation here.

The first is Loren Dent - Empires & Milk on Contract Killers Records - a very nice ambient recording. It combines ambient electronics, drones & some acoustic elements, for a nice dreamy listening experience. It's beautiful, floating music with enough grit & feedback to keep it from being too sweet. More info here...

The other disc is Bexar Bexar - Tropism on Own Records - another beautiful recording. This one also combines electronics & acoustic instruments, mostly acoustic guitar. The guitar here is more out front & the electronics & drones are background & coloring. This cd is not as purely ambient as the Loren Dent release. But it is just as beautiful & more melancholy. Tropism also uses some grit & feedback to keep things interesting. Info here...

Two wonderful recordings.