February 14, 2011

Recommended Album, 2562 - Fever

Limitation stimulates creativity and Dave Huismann seems to know this..

¨With his own birth year 1979 as the gravitational point. All based on one simple rule: every single sound in the album, from the smallest background shiver to the most obese sub bass, originates from a disco record. No additional synthesizers, drum computers or other sample sources involved.¨

An album made only from samples from old disco records, music made straight for the club! Raw as fuck!! Heres some previews..

2562 - “As a result the album to me feels like a soundtrack to my personal life during the summer in which I made it. I didn’t perform or travel much that time, so it was a very simple life: sampling records, making music, going for a run, watching the World Cup. Enjoying small things. In fact it was the first time writing an album was simply fun.


February 08, 2011

Red Bull Music Academy joins MUTEK.ES in Barcelona to present a special workshop

¨MUTEK.ES is pleased to announce a surprise addition to its 3-day program, which runs February 9 – 11, 2011 in Barcelona, Spain.

Directly following the third and final Q&A session at Discos Paradiso on Friday February 11, 2011, the festival welcomes an exclusive Red Bull Music Academy workshop with The Alchemist and Oh No!, two US producers making waves in the hip hop community with their 2010 collaboration, Gangrene.

This free workshop gives participants and lovers of “beatdiggin” a chance to take part in an Academy session in Barcelona, as a preview to the upcoming Red Bull Music Academy 2011 sessions in Tokyo, Japan.

RBMA representatives will be on hand at Discos Paradiso over all three days of the Micro_MUTEK.ES festival, as part of the launch of their call for submissions for the Red Bull Music Academy 2011 in Japan. Information about the event, application forms, and more will be available on-site. All styles of music and diverse levels of expertise are welcome so make sure to check it out!¨

Apply to Red Bull Music Academy 2011

Red Bull Music Academy have begun taking applications for their 2011 event, taking place in Tokyo in October and November!!

¨Now in its 13th edition, RBMA is a program that helps fledgling musicians get on top of their game. Participants go through two weeks of workshops and lectures, and get the chance to play at clubs in whatever city hosts the academy that year, often alongside well-known artists. Last year's event in London featured speakers like Kenny Dixon Junior (AKA Moodymann), Steve Reich, Mark Ronson, and Terre Thaemlitz (AKA DJ Sprinkles), and past alumni of the academy include Flying Lotus and Hudson Mohawke.

This year's event takes place in two rounds: one from October 23rd to November 4th, the other from November 13th to the 25th. Candidates will be reviewed by a jury of label managers, music journalists and "Academy team members," and 60 participants will be selected in total (30 for each round). The academy is looking for styles ranging "from singer-songwriters to DIY synth designers and orchestral composers or digital beat makers." Applications will be accepted until April 4th.

Application forms on their website HERE 

February 07, 2011

Turns out that music really is intoxicating, after all..

Scientists prove what we all knew all along.. By Matthew Lasar (from Ars Technica)

An "outburst of the soul," the composer Frederick Delius called music. The sounds associated with the form produce "a kind of pleasure which human nature cannot do without," observed Confucius. It is the art "which is most nigh to tears and memory," noted the writer Oscar Wilde.

It turns out that these guys were more on target than we thought. Our experience of the music we love stimulates the pleasure chemical dopamine in our brain, concludes a new study produced by a slew of scholars at McGill University. The researchers followed the brain patterns of test subjects with MRI imaging, and identified dopamine streaming into the striatum region of their forebrains "at peak emotional arousal during music listening."
Not only that, but the scientists noticed that various parts of the striatum responded to the dopamine rush differently. The caudate was more involved during the expectation of some really nice musical excerpt, and the nucleus accumbens took the lead during "the experience of peak emotional responses to music."
In other words, just the anticipation our favorite passage stimulates the production of dopamine. "Our results help to explain why music is of such high value across all human societies," the writers conclude.

Chills and thrills

To learn more about the music/brain/stimulation process, the McGill researchers followed subjects through the 'chills' or 'musical frisson' response moment. You may have thought that chills were just a subjective concept, but that isn't the case. They involve a "clear and discrete pattern of autonomic nervous system (ANS) arousal," the experimenters say, which facilitate "objective verification through psychophysiological measurements."
Bottom line: the chills moment "can be used to objectively index pleasure." So these scientists rounded up a cohort of people who had a proven record of getting the "verifiable chills" when listening to their favorite songs.
It took a while to find these folks. 217 people responded to an advertisement looking for chill-susceptible music lovers. Each candidate provided ten pieces of instrumental music that set them off in some way. The genres included tango, techno, punk, rock, electronica, jazz, folk, and classical. They then filled out a questionnaire designed to make sure their chills were authentic, and went through a mental illness screening session.

Degrees of pleasure

The process produced a cohort of 10 subjects for the actual experiment, who were scanned over two sessions. The participants listened to music that they experienced as pleasurable or to which they felt neutral. They also kept track of their chills themselves, including the "number of chills, intensity of chills and degree of pleasure experienced from each excerpt."
Meanwhile these frisson seekers were MRI scanned during the listening experience, and images that correlated with chill laden moments were examined.
"We found that hemodynamic activity in the regions showing dopamine release was not constant throughout the [musical] excerpt, but was restricted to moments before and during chills and, critically, was anatomically distinct," the researchers note.
The McGill group says that this experiment is "the first direct evidence that the intense pleasure experienced when listening to music is associated with dopamine activity in the mesolimbic reward system, including both dorsal and ventral striatum."
Thus dopamine "is pivotal for establishing and maintaining behavior," the researchers conclude:
If music-induced emotional states can lead to dopamine release, as our findings indicate, it may begin to explain why musical experiences are so valued. These results further speak to why music can be effectively used in rituals, marketing or film to manipulate hedonic states. Our findings provide neurochemical evidence that intense emotional responses to music involve ancient reward circuitry and serve as a starting point for more detailed investigations of the biological substrates that underlie abstract forms of pleasure.
It also may explain why, as Oscar Wilde suggested, we experience bursts of pleasant recollection while listening to the music that we enjoy. As studies of nicotine use show, the cigarette induced release of dopamine stimulates the remembrance of things past.

February 02, 2011

Best soundsystem in the world?

Interview with the owner of Funktion One on why he believes his speakers remain the best in the world...