After an interesting weekend, and really appreciating some tracks I had not given the close listens they deserved, I sort of undertook a personal challenge to create something sounding like Burial. The vocal samples are taken from Kerosene, by Crystal Castles - another great tune I was enamored with this weekend. This took about a day to assemble, so it’s not the most polished it could be, but I suppose it started out as an experiment and quickly gained too much momentum to be a silly Ableton project that gets abandoned or cannibalized later.
Oh, and January is almost over. Remember how I promised to reveal tracks form the new album? Take a free download of this track instead for now. I currently have 9 tracks arranged, but they need to be mastered, and some feedback has convinced me that fine tuning will be necessary.
Rindigo - Soulstain
Here is a track I have been tinkering with this week. Some things have brought me down significantly this week, and they tend to linger, and I suppose this track captures such wistful bleakness, the kind where something suddenly seizes a bright mood and infects thought and heart. However, these things are for the listener to experience and discover, and it is not for the creator to tell the listener what to feel.
It’s not my usual sound though, as the percussion in this dubstep track is really crunchy and heavy. I’ve experimented with some new techniques and effects processing, like using Maschine as an effect plugin to treat the drums. Draft34 also helped me out with some mastering racks, but I think some things are just weird here. The voices distort despite my best attempts to control them and I am leaving it the way it is because it adds something frighteningly natural in the track. some weird grittiness that seems to come from some living things in the track, some rust that is eating away at the structure of the track as the sounds pass through the speakers.
Lately I have been listening to and coming across a lot more trap music, and I thought I would dedicate a post to it because the genre is rapidly growing and because I have a curious perception of this genre that I want to share. In a thread I found elsewhere, trap was called the new brostep, derogatorily described essentially as “something brostep DJ’s through into a set to feel less white,” and generally referred to as just a new trendy genre to rage to.
I really disagree. It is of course not worth disputing that trap is great music to party hard to, but I think a lot of trap production is not geared toward partying hard, but produced with a very specific musical purpose in mind in a very specific genre context. I see trap producers treating it as one big musical joke. The production process of trap is not particularly complex and everyone is well aware of the simplicity of the patterns and the basic formula of arpeggiating snares or hats and pitch-shifting them for dramatic effect - and it sounds good of course, but it’s painfully obvious how much of a trope that is. Another glaring element of trap is the overuse of the Zaytoven type chant, and the really generic drum samples.
All of these things are great to rock out to, and using them naturally adds some sort of slightly ironic feel to whatever you add it to, because it is so derivative. I think trap producers are well aware of the derivative nature of the genre, as such use it often to ironic effect or as cross-genre allusions. Think of Burial using the deplorable airhorn sample specifically as an allusion to jungle and oldschool breakbeat. In this, I find trap to be flavor-wise, to be closely related to witch house. the genres are about the deconstruction of genre tropes and rearranging them in different ways to both ironic and referential effect. Of course witch house, which I absolutely love, and trap are very different mood wise, but production and intent wise, they are more closely related than they are at first glance.
I do not think the rise of brostep had the same vibe that the rise of trap has. Nowadays it can be - the addition of wobble bass is frequently used in totally different genres for ironic/referential effect. But I see this happening right now during the rise of trap music because producers are very well aware of what is happening: they are producing in a very ironic context and have intimate knowledge of genres and their tropes. I feel like this is in contrast to the rise of brostep, where this was mostly uncharted territory and it was a race to the top. we saw the development of a lot of completely new sounds and vibes. It was rise filled with a lot of exploration and development, as opposed to the rise of trap, which is about artistic re-arrangement, not necessarily the development of something completely new.
maybe I’m giving trap producers too much credit and just drank too much coffee myself.
Rindigo - Gestalt
Look at that! Nightshapes EP is now on RindigoMusic, a Youtube channel I created to make access to my music easier. Feel free to post, reblog, share and embed the tracks on your Facebook pages or Tumblr blogs!
It’s raining surprisingly hard here southern California, hell, it’s even thundering! It’s making me miss Portland like crazy. I know Burial uses samples of rain, and Eskmo posted on his Facebook that he is recording the rain today too.
So I pulled my mic out and have been recording the rain…
(For the record, that’s an Audio-Technica AT2020)
Rindigo - Nightshapes
I don’t know how to begin discussing this track. Of all tracks I have created, this one is my favourite. It carries emotional significant, aesthetic significance, and the EP is named after it. Some of you may recognize the first portion of the song as a reworked track I had uploaded in early January. It was a really distressing time in my life, and I had no idea what the next steps forward were. Everything felt futile or frozen. That track was called “Absence,” but I considered calling it “Primordial.” What it evoked was some sort of space without humans, a place and time before we evolved but some sort of ancient, creatures were teeming in an ocean. yet it also evoked glaring hospital lights, or ambulance lights in the night.
Some portion of those emotions have carried over to this track. There is peace here, but some kind of force that cannot be stopped. Like a knock-out punch in slow motion. The emotional turbulence of the first portion pass on into some kind of warm fuzziness, but is it a warmth within a cavernous freezing ruin?
But what I really imagine with the word “nightshapes” and how it is put against the music is also related to the album cover. The second half, with the warm blanket of ethereal tones and the deep bass is like staring out of a dimly lit room into the cold, cold night, with a smile of somber contentment on your lips. the feeling after good friends have gone home after you threw a party. the knowledge that your night was spent irresponsibly in crazy fun drunken revels, but far away you know your family has long gone asleep and that you love them, and you know they love you. the feeling of sitting in an almost empty terminal on a rainy morning and you see the dawn between the horizon and the clouds, and know that once you take off and once you land, some of your loved ones will be both left behind and there to meet you. The crazy recollections of love in an empty room illuminated with a garland of christmas lights.
I think production wise, it is also one of my best achievements. I really put a lot of effort into bringing life into the percussion, and I really hope the bass is pleasing to my listeners’ ears.
Thank you for reading, thank you for listening, and thank you for sharing.
I would greatly appreciate “likes” and shares on Facebook! Very, very much.
I also made my tracks downloadable from Soundcloud, so if you want to have them in your library, download away!
Rindigo - Streetdaze
This one was in the works for a longer time, and so much love and effort was put into making the percussion sound just right. The original sounds I had in mind when I started tinkering with Streetdaze was heavily inspired by Burial, Sorrow, Swarms, and the like, the more emotional, warmer, “fuzzier” type of dubstep. You might feel it in the rhythm - the “snare” is on the upbeat rather than the third, of you might feel it in the atmosphere.
one of the main components of what gives this track the forlorn feeling of being left, emotionally befuddled, on a busy street is precisely the fact that there are samples of the street: I thank Nick, aka Draft34 for his field recordings that I used and manipulated into the atmosphere of Streetdaze.
Rindigo - Gestalt
I’ll be posting the tracks off the EP in the order I uploaded them, and Gestalt is the first one. I chose the name because the word has always had an association with immensity and heaviness. When I think the word “gestalt,” I imagine the dark silhouette of a concrete and steel structure against a boiling grey sky, and to my ears, this track captured a touch of the feeling of a desolate, industrial space. at the same time, there seems to be something alive here, sometimes creeping and writhing and crawling, something wet. the huge reverbs and the constant echoing off of the percussion makes that space feel barren and a bit unwelcoming, but the immensity and fatness of the bass that drops in halfway through the track adds just enough warmth to keep the listener standing around that concrete underworld. I hope you have nice speakers, because this track has some good bass in it!
And here it is! I uploaded Nightshapes EP as a set to Soundcloud! Give it a listen and I would be more than happy to hear feedback. I have the ask function enabled on this blog specifically for that, and should someone desire to collaborate, I also enabled submission!
This small bunch of tracks is the product of a lot of different drafts and sketches, numerous different sources of inspiration. A thank you to my good friend Draft34 for a couple interesting field recordings and samples that worked their way into Streetdaze. As some of you may recognize, Nightshapes is a reworking and extension of a previous track that didn’t feel complete or… mature enough.
Also the lovely photo was taken by Kathy
I am posting this as a link rather than as an audio upload because Tumblr can’t deal with audio uploading. I should have expected the audio set on Soundcloud to not transfer properly… I will be uploading the tracks one by one, and adding much more detailed commentary though! thanks for sticking around!