Chris Randall: Musician, Writer, User Interface Designer, Inventor, Photographer, Complainer. Not necessarily in that order.
 
March 4, 2008

Testing t3h Awesome...

by Chris Randall
 

Here is an example of how the Bullshit Detector of your average musician gets defeated by gearlust. I'm as guilty as anyone, of course, and the test is not double-blind, scientific in the least, or verified. I have a gut feeling that it is absolutely true, though. In a nutshell, if you don't feel like reading it, a self-described "audiophile" (and we all get a case of the giggles when we hear that word) admits in public that he couldn't tell the difference between Monster M-1000 speaker cable and the same connection made with coat hanger wire.


This brings to mind the recent video that was posted of a Robert Henke lecture in Australia, wherein he goes in to some detail about how 64-bit summing busses in DAWs are simply a marketing ploy, and how it is essentially impossible for the human ear to tell the difference between 32-bit math and 64-bit math, at least as far as summing busses are concerned. (The video is well worth watching in any case, as it goes in to his process and how he designed and uses MonoDeck II. It's 1.5hrs long, though.)


He points out, in a somewhat different manner, the same thing I've been saying for years: the song will out. People tend to obsess on the medium or the means of delivery these days, at the expense of the music itself. Anyone that thinks you can't have a hit song using Acid and a Presonus Firebox, mixed on Behringer monitors, needs to go have a conversation with Soulja Boy real quick-like. I'll be the absolute first person to admit that I'm a gear snob of the first order, but I know enough about the math of audio to be absolutely certain of one fact: my nice shit doesn't help me write better songs.


What it does do is remove the gear itself from any question. I know that if my song sounds like shit, it's definitely not because of my convertors, monitors, cabling, whatever. It's my mix or the song itself. I have no illusions whatsoever of that fact.


 
March 3, 2008

Oops... (Duende PCIe)

by Chris Randall
 

Looks like someone jumped the gun on the Duende PCIe announcement. They even had the tact (or distinct lack thereof) to put up the letter SSL sent to them instead of coming up with their own copy. "Since that time, Duende with the help of you our valued reseller has sold over 3000 units." Bogus.


In any case, I'm sure this will make a lot of people happy.



 
March 2, 2008

Dig, Lazarus, Dig!!!

by Chris Randall
 



My rather eccentric music taste makes me kind of easy to pin down, I think. Witness: there are exactly four artists that currently release records that I actually get a little excited about. Those four artists are Underworld, Tom Waits, Einst?rzende Neubauten, and today's topic, Nick Cave (w/ or w/o the Bad Seeds.)


With all of these artists, there's some releases I like and some I don't. I suppose Underworld is the most consistent; I can't, offhand, think of any record I like less than any other. More about particular songs, and really only Bruce Lee when you get down to it. There are plenty of Tom Waits records I can't stand at all, and Neubauten, well, I don't listen to much prior to Tabula Rasa any more, probably because I'm getting old. I really enjoy their last few albums, though, and the newest has been getting heavy play lately.


Same with Nick Cave. I'm not one of those slobbering types that thinks he's Bela Legosi Incarnate or any of that bullshit. For the albums I do own, there are only three or four tracks I actually can stand on each, with the exception of Grinderman, which I like all the way through, and Murder Ballads, which I like except when a chick starts singing. With this in mind, I look forward to Tuesday's release of Dig, Lazarus, Dig!!! From the video, and the fact that the entire album is on Myspace (here...) it seems that the rather abstracted approach to writing/recording explored on the Grinderman album has been extrapolated in to the whole Bad Seeds lineup quite nicely. His albums take a little while to grow on me, but I give him a chance, which is more than I can say for about 99.999999999% of the new music I hear these days.


 
March 1, 2008

iDunno...

by Chris Randall
 



There seems to be some sort (or several sorts) of electronic music making device here, but color me retarded if I can't figure it out. Someone here must be able to explain this. I have the distinct feeling this is one of those "breaking down the barriers between nature and music" kind of projects, the ones that earn people masters degrees in small "edgy" art colleges, but I can't be certain.


What I can say is that the makers of the iLog site have a distinct and palpable sense of ironic humor, and that I can appreciate, whether any barriers are getting broken or not.


 
February 29, 2008

I made me one of them-there records...

by Chris Randall
 

My fifth album as Micronaut, Callisto, is now available for purchase in shopPOSI.Download only, as you recall we gave up pressing CDs for Lent. The download comes in the form of either an "alt-preset-standard" VBR MP3 or FLAC, your choice.


As an aside, long-time readers will remember that this album was entirely recorded (but not yet mixed), lost in a tragic hard drive accident, and re-recorded. Frankly, this is for the better, because all I had were memories of the first iteration, and the stuff I could remember was generally better than the stuff I couldn't, it would stand to reason. While this sort of nonsense is incredibly annoying at the time (I actually sat on the couch saying "fuuuuuuuck" for about three days) it is really quite cathartic. I wouldn't necessarily recommend wiping a hard drive as a solution for a creative impasse, but it is worth considering, I guess.


In any event, if you feel the need to support this site, and you aren't merrily buying everything that Audio Damage makes, you could do worse than to grab an album. Not only do you support my filthy, filthy habits, but you get something out of the deal.

 

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