SIMPC0009 Uncategorized

New Remix out on Simplecoding Recordings

I have a remix out today on a great techno label from Argentina, Simplecoding Recordings. I’ve played quite a bit of their stuff out in Bangkok so it’s a great honour to get a remix out on their label. Nice to know that if you put music out there good people will listen and sometimes pick it up. About 10 years ago I spent about a month in Argentina and have fond memories of it (mainly steak and wine!) so this fills me with joy.

 

Please support and check out their back catalogue too!

Life

The EU Referendum and Biscuits

I shamelessly stole this from some dude off facebook. Just make sure you use your vote today if you’re in the UK. I hope to remain for what it’s worth.

Unlike everyone else, who seemingly overnight has become a champion of European legislation and a bastion of the legalities of immigration, I genuinely know fuck all about politics.

Honestly. Can’t even tell you the difference between labour, conservatives or the other ones. Is it Lib dems? I don’t know what they do. Tories are cunts though… That’s literally the extent of my knowledge.

It just doesn’t interest me because, and I’m aware that this is painfully apathetic and stupid, but it’s boring and I don’t see how any of it’s actually set up to help me. If I was a bank or building society or a business that operated on the global market or just a cunt who went to Eton and fancied making all my pig diddling mates peers or something then yeah, I’d give more of a shit. But I’m not. I’m just a bloke who works in a call centre 8 hours a day and whether we’re in or out of Europe I’ll still have £68 pound a month to pay for bus fares. I’m trapped in renting so I couldn’t give less of a shit about “community” because I’m not really part of one because I might move again in 6 month so what’s point? I’ll still be skint either way, the concept of owning a house will remain a sick joke and I’ll still have to work until I’m a billion and 30 just to retire on the £8.47 I’ve got saved up in my work pension (yes I’m aware all of these are political points… Irony’s funny, isn’t it?) but governments aren’t set up for people like me… They’re set up for people who are either tragically, tragically poor or people who are almost belligerently rich. Even if we save money by coming out, who gives a shit? What, we’re suddenly going to start looking after old folk and buying hospitals are we? Wont we need the four food banks in Leeds anymore? You talk actual piss. Any money saved will go into buying more pigs or moats for duck houses.

The point for me is this though; A university professor of 12 years, what has got an actual PHD, specialising in European constitutional law and the relationship between the EU and its member states, specifically the UK, the single market and the free movement of people has said its a fucking shit idea to leave the EU.

Surely that’s enough then? Let’s agree with him, surely? He probably knows what’s chong and what’s not chong.

I mean I know you’ve got a BTEC in sports science and, yeah… sure, your lass has got her level 1 hairdressing certificate and you both went to Tossa De Mar once for holiday but his points seem to come across better than yours somehow. Like, his arguments are built around solid premises and formulated on numbers and research and shit whereas yours are like “Yeah well The Sun says all black people are wankers, so…”.

The best way I can think of it is in terms of the biscuit club at work. Everybody pays in and everybody gets nice biscuits. Sure you can get your own biscuits if you want but it’s a lot of fucking about and you’ll only have to share them anyway. What, are you gonna legitimately eat them all to yourself in an office are you Sharon? Right well that’s why you wear sports socks and can’t find a husband. Yeah, not everyone gets the biscuits they want all the time but if your choice is shit biscuits sometimes or no biscuits ever then it’s a fucking no brainer. What if you want help to get biscuits but nobody cares because they’re sorted for Jaffas now? What about your relationship with people who are still in biscuit club? You think they’ll be happy with you tapping Hob Nobs off them everyday because you forgot to go to Jacksons at the weekend? Get to fuck. “Oh no, loads of new people want to join in with biscuit club now!” So? More people means more / better biscuits. Yeah you might have to share more but what are you, 5? If you don’t want to share biscuits then fuck off back to Russia you pinko commie swine. Plus, why do you think they WANT to join? It’s because these biscuits are brilliant and they haven’t got any. Sometimes people do Ramadan and can’t eat biscuits while the suns up… Who gives a shit? Don’t have biscuits then. It’s ok… Just have them later. Take them home for when suns gone down for all I care. And yeah, some people try and blag it… They don’t pay what they should or they eat more than you but you don’t just fuck biscuits off all together because of a couple of dickheads. Grow up you babies. “He hasn’t paid for biscuits and by rights he’s eating my property!”. Yeah… Jason’s not paying this week because he’s got dick cancer and he’s got better things to worry about. Let him have a biscuit you tight bastard. Fuck me. Plus his wife’s got alopecia. Difficult home life mate. Give him a biscuit while he sorts his head out.

I’m just gonna go with the PHD bloke to be honest because he’s smarter than everyone else and I fucking love biscuits me.

Label-Design---Orlando Music

Orlando (Techno for charity)

The terrible shooting at Pulse nightclub in Orland has left me scratching my head at the senseless violence for a couple of days. I went in the studio this morning to try to flush out my feelings and this was what came out.

Any proceeds made here will be donated to The Centre, Orlando who’s mission is “to promote and empower the GLBT Community and its allies through information, education, advocacy and support.” I will match any purchase funds in the donation.

You can donate directly here with all of the money going to the victims families and friends.

Please share this wherever you can.
Music

Comp for Andreas Gehm

I saw this pop up a few times recently in my feed so thought I’d look into it. I was interested because the initial request was for free tracks to help out someone called Andreas Gehm and it was reposted by Orlando Voorn. Not having heard of Andreas before I looked him up and he’s a producer, getting on a bit like I am, and having a few serious health issues at the moment which means that he can’t work. Hard times.

So a friend of his has organised this massive (and I mean fucking huge) compilation for him which other producers have given their tracks for free. There are 126 tracks and over 13 hours of music here. Just to put this into perspective, I didn’t have the hard disk space to download the lot as wav so instead had to download the 1.8GB as mp3!

The stand out techno tracks for me are from Paul Mac and FBK. These will easily slot into my Bangkok techno sets.

 

Others that I’ve kept for different sets and just because I think they are great are from 69forever, Aleksander von Zimmer, Andreas Gehm, Acid S, Carlos Nilmmns, Demented Machine, Drox, Errell Ranson, Herwarth Sturm, Hoax Believers, IASI, Martin Heimann, n’Sequel, Nubian Mindz (lovely ambient track), Orlando Voorn, Phonophlux, Sean Dixon, Shawnn Lai, Tom Dicicco and Weakmassive.

So a massive compilation with some big names in there for a good cause. As a friend of mine posted recently about another compilation.

You’d have to basically hate electronic music to not buy this.

 

MCHNWRKS-01 Uncategorized

MCHNWRKS Launched

Here we go then! Release day and I’m really proud to announce the first release on our new label. Proof, if ever it was needed, that you are never really too old to get back into something if your heart is in it.

You might have already heard these tracks played out before as I’ve been trialling versions both live and mixed around Bangkok for a few months now.

I also know it’s already been played in Switzerland, Germany, the UK and recently I heard Owen play a live version on the radio at the other side of the planet.

So enough of that mushy bollocks before I start weeping. You can find our first release for Mchnwrks in the following stores amongst others 🙂

If you wish to support us then that would be wonderful and if so, it’d be great to buy it from Bandcamp. You can stream it there too. Living in Thailand I am getting all sorts of territory restrictions from Beatport and iTunes but hopefully it’s on there too if it’s easier for you.

And whilst I’m here, a massive happy Birthday to Owen aka RhythmDial Techno too.

Cheers, Stu

Blurb
Stu Grant (Redshifter) and Owen De Vivo (RhythmDial) team up to open this new label. The original mix created by Owen a year ago is heavy and harsh, penetrating any basement rave with ease. Stu’s remix brings it up to date creating a hook for the floor with space to breathe. Rough, imperfect, noisy, electronic funk generated by decaying machines.

Producer Tips

Producers remorse and why you need to sit on…

Buyer’s remorse is the sense of regret after having made a purchase. It is frequently associated with the purchase of an expensive item such as a car or house. It may stem from fear of making the wrong choice, guilt over extravagance, or a suspicion of having been overly influenced by the seller.

We’ve all had that feeling when buying something. The next day, or maybe even the first time you use whatever you’ve bought you get that knot in your stomach and think “Ah shit. I probably didn’t need to buy that.”

There is a production equivalent and without a decent existing phrase I call it Producers Remorse. This is when you finish a track, usually late at night throw a quick mastering chain on it and get it straight onto SoundCloud, usually accompanied by posting it onto twitter and facebook.

“Hey bro! Check out my new track!”

And then the next day comes, and you listen to it again, and it inevitably sounds terrible. Or certainly different. But mostly terrible. There are a couple of reasons for this.

Firstly, your ears have recovered. The previous evening if you’ve been producing for over an hour then it’s likely you will have become fatigued, especially since it’s quite common to have louder music in the evening as your ears are already overused.

Secondly, maybe you’ve had a beer or two. Maybe you’ve smoked something for additional creative benefits. Well this is definitely going to impact what it sounds like the next day.

So my simple tips on avoiding this first problem are to turn your computer off and go to bed. The next day you can have another listen and it’s likely you will turn the bass down and level the treble a bit and your mix will be more balanced. You will certainly notice something slap you in the face, usually a clap. I have had a reoccurring issue for 20 years in that my kicks are always too boxy the next day. I have learned to pick that out early on now but even a year ago I would listen to my tunes the next day and was positive that someone had sneaked into the studio in the night and turned my kick up. In fact I’m kidding myself. It still happens a lot.

That’s the most basic thing which you can look at the next day.

Following that, is the music actually any good? You’ve just been listening to a loop for 4 hours and it’s 11pm at night.

You have no idea if it’s any good or not.

My advice here is to not listen to it for another week. Then if you still think it’s cool try and play it out or post it privately to someone and ask for their honest opinion. Good labels will help you develop your sound to release something that is great so it’s ok to send it to them at this point if they have asked you to work on an EP.

Develop that rhino skin though because the advice is hard to take sometimes. I once had a good friend of mine tell me bluntly on a tune I thought was really cool “It has no edge to it. There is no tension and I couldn’t be bothered to listen to more than 30 seconds”. Fuck me, that was a tough comment to take :-/

Then you’ve also got the fact that anything you post on the internet can drag you down forever. Kr!s from Token Records put it excellently the other day on this facebook post.

“- Not everything you create has to see the light of day. Be your own worst critic. Less is more.
– Understand that once you release a record, you can’t erase it, so make sure you’re 200% behind the music, cause 1 bad decision can have an impact on your artist profile for the rest of your musical life.” Kr!z

So more than just ‘does it sound good, is it well produced’ now you need to think ‘will I be happy to have this attached to me for the rest of my life?’

A year ago I was still putting out music that by the time it came to releasing it I was bored of it and wouldn’t play it. If I feel like that about my tunes on release day why on earth would anyone else see lasting value? Now I sit on tunes for months before releasing anything and then go through a torturous process to work out what I want to release and what I don’t want to. I don’t mind adding remixes and cut tunes later on to bandcamp releases as some people find interest and value in that but I try to ensure that my main releases now consist of music that I will at least want to play later on in my life, and that’s kind of the point.

Quality over quantity.

And just a final note. I can’t find the tweet to post it as it was a while back but @djdaveclarke posted on twitter about 6 months ago about dead SoundCloud links as promos. He’d been trying to listen to promos and the links didn’t exist anymore. You’ve got one of the most famous and respected techno DJs in the world, actively trying to listen to your music, and I have first hand experience that he will promote anything that he loves, and he can’t hear it because you’ve removed the promo. A real shame, do you think he will try and listen to your tunes next time you send something?

So to summarise:

  1. Wait
  2. Wait
  3. Wait some more
  4. Get feedback
  5. Ditch 90% of your music
  6. Wait
  7. Publish

I hope this helps.

Cheers, Stu

 

Label-Design---The-Eye-of-Jupiter Music

New unreleased tracks available on Bandcamp

I’ve just uploaded my last EP, The Eye of Jupiter, to Bandcamp and added two tracks. One was a track called Storm that I cut off the original EP because I only wanted the published version to have two tracks. Storm is a heavy, pretty pacey, techno track made for layering on top.

The other is an ambient version of Jupiter. The immersive pads sound pretty cool with the sparse bass rhythm.

You can listen and buy from here https://stugrant.bandcamp.com/album/the-eye-of-jupiter along with the original versions too.

Cheers,

Stu

EMB009 Life

Embryo – A brief history

I used to release tracks on vinyl back in the 90s/00s. Every so often I find that someone has kindly stuck something on youtube (which is nice).

EMB004

Embryo Records was setup by myself and Chris McCormack after we met during some downtime in a chill-out tent at tribal gathering (I shit you not). I’m sure that those of you who know Chris will find that pretty amusing.

Anyway, we pretty quickly built up a decent name for the label. This was the 4th release (my 2nd) and my first solo EP. Dave Clarke mentioned it once in his best records of the year for a magazine (Mixmag?) and I think we used that tagline for the next 5 years. In reality I think it turned up 20 minutes before he was interviewed for the piece. Anyway, I heard him play this out a couple of times and also Jeff Mills, Luke Slater and probably a few others but it was a hazy time so a few names escape me.

Here is a playlist of the EP that someone was kind enough to rip and put online. I’ll do a decent copy of it at some point.

Interestingly the B2 track (actually A2 on the record but it doesn’t matter) is the most similar to what I produce today. Definitely notice something about the synths, reverb and hats in that.

It was a decent little label really considering we had no idea what we were doing. All went fine until we decided to do a weird double pack which didn’t really fit that well with our series of EPs. I think we were trying to branch out a bit but in hindsight we should have just stuck to what we knew.

Number 9 was the final EP, ‘the core trax’ and had my favourite track on it that I’ve ever produced. My plan at the time was to start a new label called ‘core trax’ based around this sound which was a bit more dubby and a bit looser than my previous tunes but for various reasons it was to be my last release for a long time.

https://soundcloud.com/stugrant/emb009-a1-2016-remaster?in=stugrant/sets/embryo-records-1996-2000

Looking back maybe I wouldn’t have released 2 of the 4 of those tracks and I rarely played these out. Interesting reviewing that and comparing it to these days where I am much more selective about what goes out of the door.

I will try to sample up the rest of the vinyl when I return to the UK in the summer and post some updates.

Gigs

FREE DOWNLOAD Tech-Noir 006 2nd June 2016

Not a hugely attended night but we were expecting that since it’s way out of the peak season. Hopefully will start to fill up from September onwards.

https://soundcloud.com/stugrant/stu-grant-tech-noir-006-2nd-june-2016