February 28, 2010

Sonar Update

Alot more artists have been confirmed now for this years Sonar. Click on each name for a quick introduction video for each artist.

The Chemical BrothersAirLCD SoundsystemPlastikmanJónsiDizzee Rascal2manydjsBooka ShadeHot ChipFuck ButtonsAeroplaneKing Midas SoundBroadcastThe Sugarhill GangMatthew Herbert's One Club,Flying LotusPete TongJoy OrbisonZombyRoskaNecro DeathmortMary Anne HobbsDavid MJohn Talabot,BradienSpeech DebelleEmilio JoséUffieJimi Tenor & Kabu KabuHudson MohawkeCarte Blanche (DJ Mehdi & Riton)Nosaj Thing Visual ShowDeloreanThe Pinker TonesNoaipreSandwell DistrictbRUNABomba EstéreoCora NovoaClusterMike SlottBCN 216 + Tristan PerichBflechaThe Slew featuring Kid KoalaEclair Fifi & John ComputerMachinedrumAmerican MenThe BlessingsElektro GuzziZigmatdp-SLesley Flanigan,BCN216 + Cristian VogelRobot KochLaryttaRound Table KnightsGoldielocksTim and Puma Mimi,

And if your only thinking of maybe doing one or two of the official Sonar parties click here for details on who is playing when. Also as soon as some off-sonar parties come to light, I'll get them on here. Keep an eye out for a special BAMBAM party aswell..

February 22, 2010

News - Scuba live recorded mix

      Click on the arrow to download 

Recorded live from the RMBA Radio stage at Eurosonic Noorderslag 2010 festival. Again Scuba (featured in our Making a Ripple last year) is still doing an amazing job in bringing his love of techno and dubstep together and creating something very refreshing (Bass-Centric Experimentalism he has named it) It is soo good! This guy is seriously on it at the moment! Pure dancefloor shit! Expect to be dancing around your home for the next hour!

February 18, 2010

Making a Ripple: Mount Kimbie

When the alien sound-waves of Mount Kimbie first reached my unexpected ears one night last year whilst listening to the Mary Anne Hobbs show, It was something of a shock to the system. This was electronic music like I had not heard in a long time. The first track I heard by them was their now cult hit track 'Maybe's' which was released out of the blue on Scuba's Hotflush label in early 2009. The track had an almost pop like feel to it on first listen, but with a unique, intricate and complex heart. After hearing the track I immediately fell in love with their sound and straight away hunted for more info on the release, which was forthcoming on 'Hotflush' at the time. One thing that has to be said, is that their first Ep was and still is a magical creation and it's an Ep that I still have on heavy rotation now. It's just very delicately crafted, subtle and emotive electronic expressions. Some people may label this as Dubstep, but for me this is not Dubstep at all, it's just Mount Kimbie music, which is what BamBam love.

Incase your not aware of them, Mount Kimbie are a London/Brighton based duo who bounced onto the Dubstep scene last year with their first magical Ep. According to Scuba, they had actually been sending him all sorts of weird stuff for quite some time, but it was with their Maybe's Ep where the sound had really matured to the level it is now. The interesting thing also is that their sound, as with all good acts, seems to be evolving all the time, as displayed in their latest Ep on Hotflush called 'Sketch on Glass'.

As music is more powerful than words, I think the easiest way for me to introduce you to their sound if your not familiar already is to guide you through my favorite tracks so far. So put some decent headphones on, or make sure your listening on some nice warm speakers, and enjoy the sounds of Mount Kimbie.....

The main track which got me into them, and still sounds as fresh now
I'm in love with this track, and love the slow-mo crunchy hip hop style beats which swing in half way through. The only downside to this track is that it's too short!
This is perhaps my favorite of their tracks, the intro synth on this is so warm and pure and when the first, almost downtempo percussive elements arrive they are just so crisp it's baffling. What I love the most though is the deceiving nature of the track, at first it appears to be downtempo, but the elements are cleverly placed within the 140bpm timeframe which leaves for a subtle transition mid way into a cheeky swinging, somewhat dubstep style track which is highly danceable and playful at the same time.

This is the title track from their latest Ep on Hotflush. Slightly more dancefloor focused with snappy crisp beats and a cheeky sub which will bust your gut on a big system. Again pure quality!

They are playing quite a few gigs at the moment in the UK and across Europe but sadly none lined up in the near future in Barcelona (fingers crossed though). To find out more info on releases and gig dates, check out their Myspace HERE

February 15, 2010

Micro_Mutek Bring dOP to Barcelona

Mutek (one of the worlds most important festivals on the planet for cutting edge electronic music and visual arts) have pulled it out the bag once again!! They are now calling their new Barcelona invasion "Micro_Mutek". First they tested the water by bringing Deadbeat to Barcelona a few months ago, after such good reviews and such a cool party, this month they are throwing three consecutive parties in a row, starting from tomorrow! We're so excited about this at bambam, Ive decided to make our new friend Micro_Mutek another feature of the site so we can keep you updated about all new events they put on. This month though there is one party they are throwing in particular Im really excited about..

The artists I cant wait to see are people we haven't yet spoke about on bambam, "dOP". Ive been following their music for a couple of years, but have always been told with these guys that it's their live performance thats sets them above the rest. Heres an example of the energy these three guys bring to the club..

Also they have DAVID MARDONES providing his groundbreaking interactive installations.
"Play with Motion' lets anyone in the audience interact with the video projections to command them through motion!" I cant wait to see how this works in the club environment!! Heres a quick clip of his visuals in action..

The full Micro_Mutek lineup for these three parties


Soirée MUTEK

SONJA MOONEAR [CH] live, LE K [FR] live

Moog Club, starting midnight


Livesoundtracks and MUTEK.ES present

DRAMA SOCIETY [IT] live reinterpretation of Pasolini's film "Teorema"

+ Photo Expo

Vintage Bar, starting 8pm


AKUFEN [CA] Dj, dOP [FR] live

+ DAVID MARDONES (interactive visuals)

Raum Club, starting midnight

February 05, 2010

Article: Surround Sound, But Where is it Coming From?

Over the past few years we have seen technology in the visual realm evolve so rapidly that now some of the big producers are boasting they can now make 3D TV even without making you wear glasses that make you look like Brains from Thunderbirds. But with each new cinematic home entertainment system that comes out, one underlaying factor is always there which always makes the viewer feel one step closer to feeling the environment they are viewing, and that is the surround sound system!

The surround sound system is what ultimately intensifies the whole viewing experience, so much so, that you can feel the vibration from every explosion in your favorite action movie, hear every war cry and stab wound in epic battle scenes, put you infront of 64,000 screaming football fans at a stadium, or totally bewilder you in an environment you have never been to, like the heart of an Amazon rainforest, pulsating with life and with exotic creatures calling you from every angle!

So then, if a cleverly programmed surround sound environment and effects mixdown can glue the viewer to their seat, so strong they are actually too scared to leave, for fear of stepping into the crazy world they are watching; then dont you think it's time you got a piece of this magic from your favorite music producers?

Well, believe it or not, there are guys out there doing it to a great standard, and not only for home listening but in clubs also. It's still a fresh scene that is brewing and with no fixed rules or boundaries, every release or live performance is giving way to a new vision of how to guide the listener through this new spacious world. Not even the major record companies are yet united on which media format to release this music.

The most common setup is Dolby 5.1 which everyone is probably aware of by now, consisting of 2 speakers at the rear, 2 at the front and a dirty whopping sub at the front to take care of bass. The next progression is Dolby 7.1, which is a similar setup but with 2 extra speakers almost exactly to the left and right of the viewing position. But then taking things a few steps further, there are now setups like 9.1, 11.1 and 11.2 (the latter experimenting with sounds above and below). But despite all this pussyfooting around between record companies and sound system producers, some of the big boys of the Techno world have decided to plunge into the deep end and show people it can be done and at a pretty high standard to-boot!

Richie Hawtin, Speedy J, and Monolake are some of the guys who have made the evolutionary swim from their tiny crowded 2D stereo pond into the open sea of 3D! Richie Hawtin gave me the first taste of this world courtesy of his 'DE9 Transitions' DVD. The main concept of this piece was to take snipits and loops from over 100 techno tracks and turn the idea of a standard A to B DJ mix into a rich alphabet soup (with a lot more fidelity than his previous "closer to the edit concept CD's" ), but then further enhance the already lavish concept by making the final mixdown in Dolby 5.1 surround sound. The result is a wonderfully hypnotic example of how to showcase the format of surround sound. The whole concept of minimalism, in this instance, working extremely well in this format, with the ultra crisp productions from the chosen tracks in this mix and the beats at times becoming very sparse, making it very clear which direction sounds are coming from and also the extra space created by more speakers leaves room in the mix for more complex rhythems to develop; thus creating a truly spellbinding piece of music from start to finish. 

Not much was done on the visual end though, with Richie perhaps overplaying the minimal theme by giving the viewer only the titles of tracks from which he took the pieces from and fading them over a black background, which; is nice for the musical nerds among us, but after seeing how cool some visuals are at his DJ gigs, it's quite disappointing. Still, this does not detract from the sheer quality of this piece.

Speedy J aka Jochem Paap was the next heavy weight Techno DJ I came across pushing this format. He has been doing his 'Umifeld Tour' for a few years now and to enhance the musical experience has been collaborating with the graphic designer Scott Pagano to create stunning visuals in HD also.
I caught one of these performances at the Berghain club in Berlin, on a nicely tuned FunktionOne system. Speedy started with some great larger than life cinematic soundscapes that were so intense you would have thought it was a warning signal for the end of the universe and made the HD screen shots on the walls seem like the most epic gallery you had ever been to. Then throughout these monsterous soundscapes which slowly morphed their way around your head, Speedy hammered out his brand of brash non merciful beats. Real heavy breathtaking stuff, at times though a little too maximal and didnt give the listener the full multi-directional experience it could have been. Also with him having to perform in front of the spoilt for choice, face-picked crowd of Berghain, it didnt show off everything that he is truly capable of and he stuck to a tried and tested formula of driving four-to-the-floor Techno.

Joachim is very excited to show off this unfamiliar format and says that “it feels like being back in the early 90s when techno happened in Europe” and that “the subtle stuff will probably come later”

In fact he is that keen to show off his work, together with the high-tech visual masterpiece that accompanies it so well, that it is available for download on a donation basis. If you have a 5.1 system at home this is a real trippy Techno session that will give it a good workout! So make sure you check out the link below 

Umfield TV

Monolake was the last guy I saw perform his work in this format. His mechanical beats and luchious soundscapes were a mouthwatering prospect for this format and this is a project he is really evolving everytime he performs. He is the co-founder of Ableton live (the most efficient live music performance tool on the market) and has his own self built controller, the "Monodeck II'; so with the issue of playing and control out of the way, he can hone all his efforts into what sounds great and how to make the best musical experience he can.
When I saw him he had the club arranged in a new format for the occasion. With his control booth set smack bang in the middle of the dancefloor, which is the ultimate place for every performer to:
a) accurately cue up and monitor.b) be a part of the crowd and respond well.
However, this sadly takes up quite a percentage of the sweet spot, which ultimately is where its at! Never the less, from standing alongside the man himself, you could hear how he used mono beats to rock the party and complex delays to bounce the sound arround your head, to really add some cool groove (all be it on a diabolical sound system, tragically typical for Berlin!). However, this was such a well thought out set, going from sparse and sci fi to full on thrashing rave and not only was it a meticulously planned set but so to was the video art.
Monolake is working with the artist Tarik Barri during these performance and doing great sound to visual work in ground breaking ways. He has created sci fi worlds that slowly evolve but how they evolve is down to the tempo and intensity of the music and also clever manipulation by himself.
"What makes me dance in a club is rhythm, but what makes me really happy while dancing is great sound. I like the experience of being surrounded by a massive wall of sound which at the same time is highly defined and structured." Monolake.

Looking even further into the future, Monolake is also working with the German company 'IOSONO' who have created a system which takes surround sound to a whole new level. IOSONO have created a system using 'Wave Field Synthesis', which in simpler terms for you and me, means that the speakers can create a sound which actually sounds like it is being created from any position inside or even outside of the room. This means the illusion of space will be at a much higher standard than simply using reverb effects and will also give the possibility of the ENTIRE dance floor becoming a sweet spot! 

To find out more about Monolake and his latest project, check out the link below


Truly there is a new era of concerts coming, and these are exciting times to be experiencing, with this in it's infancy. It will only get better. So keep your ear to the ground and you could be a part of this new phenomenon!

February 02, 2010

Recommended Label - Raster-Noton

"Raster-Notion is a platform — a network covering the overlapping border areas of pop, art and science. emerged from the fusion of the two labels rastermusic and noton (in 1999) they realize music projects, publications and installation works. The common idea behind all releases is an experimental approach — an amalgamation of sound, art and design."

(headphones on...)

I came across Raster-Notion through the artist Alva Noto. It was my first experience of music that can capture the same intense, heady emotions as techno and other rhythmical electronic music solely through use of ambient soundscapes and drones. Some of Alva Noto's ambient music in soo bass heavy and textured it really takes your breathe away and fills the club to such an extent that you have forgot there isnt even a beat. Hitting all the right emotions that keep you locked in! Alva Noto's music is so grounded it comes up from the floor and engulfs everybody on the floor!

As with alot of other ambient and other experimental music Ive always thought alot of it lacks a strong relationship between itself and the listener/crowd. For me, if something is too experimental and is off 'doing its own thing' then it is only experimenting with sounds and not with emotions. Obviously there is a need for this music, alot of new genres are created from ideas first put into this category. But my main interest is in the music where the experimenting crosses over with the people. When those ideas can be translated and understood to the point where the people can be guided into this new world. For me this is where the life-changing magic happens!!

Coming out of the clubs though, anybody looking for colourful, creatively diverse electronica, Rasta-Noton is definitely a label to have a dig through..

Heres the Link to their website which has samples of all their releases and up to date information on up coming events..

I'll end this on one of alto noto's biggest tracks from back in 2007.. enjoy!