Stellar Om Source
Teaser 12-inch for Christine Gualdi's upcoming LP on New York institution RVNG Intl (Max D, Blondes, Sun Araw/Congos). Stellar Om Source's recent Image over Image 12" saw her integrating tough beats into her synth vistas - on Elite Excel, Gualdi combines raw, adroit drum programming with the time-warp qualities of her earlier work. Everything is in its right place - at 2:30 a pristine C2-esque synth vamp emerges over the hazy acid. The momentum picks up as the track spans on, Gualdi continuing to strike the balance between rough acid techno and synthetic mind-music. The remix finds Kassem Mosse exploring the cubist funk he pulled off so well on 2D. Buy Elite Excel
Assured full-length debut from the producer whom many expect to carry Detroit's legacy forwards. What's on display here is not a producer buckling under decades of dance music history, rather, a singular talent who began his career taking risks and continues to double-down. KMFH's use of isolators is unparalleled. The first half of this album holds skittering drum tracks, yet remains compelling due to Hall's nuanced filtering and effects work. "Flemmenup" welds the recent footwork fixation onto classic Detroit electro-styles, while "Crushed" shows the producer can cut a sample alongside legends like KDJ and Terrence Parker. "Finnapop" is a Dancemania tribute which ends in a solid 2:30 minutes of spooling noise, emphasizing the experimental nature of Hall's production and listening (Hall enjoys shopping for outre records at Windy and Carl's "Stormy" records). The final track, "Measure 2 Measure" shows Hall effortless skating around a pair of soul samples, juggling insane hi-hats and morphing the soaring female vocal into an endless, abstract delay trail. There is a perfect sloppiness to what Hall does on the record, light years away from marathon Ableton sculpting sessions.
Since news first broke yesterday of the passing of legendary rock keyboardist Ray Manzarek, who co-founded The Doors in 1965 with Jim Morrison, people have been playing Doors music and sending out tributes. I never realized just how many people loved the Doors so much but such is the sign of a truly great band. Some people, upon hearing the news at first, didn't believe it and questioned if it was a hoax. Such is the ere we live in. But soon everyone found out that sadly the news was no hoax and that the greatly admired musician/author/film director, who maintained a consistent passion for his art throughout his life, had left this earth. Yesterday, Monday May 20th, the South Chicago born Manzarek died at the RoMed Clinic in Rosenheim, Germany following a battle with bile-duct cancer. Manzarek was 74.
While Jim Morrison - the late great vocalist and front man of The Doors - might be the first one to come to mind when the average person thinks of the Doors it was the blues rooted keyboard playing of Manzarek and his signature hooks, that also doubled as the bass backbone of the group's sound, that helped distinguish the Doors' warm sound. And the fact that the Doors even came about in the first place is thanks to Manzarek's intuition and foresight. As the story goes; following a chance encounter on Venice Beach with Morrison, who he first met at UCLA before the two film students had graduated, Manzarek convinced the future Doors front man, who considered himself a poet and not a musician, that his poems/songs would be best presented with the backing of a blues-based rock band. And the rest as they say is rock n roll history. Manzarek's soulful musicianship was instrumental in defining such Doors classics as “Light My Fire,” “Riders on the Storm,” “Love Her Madly,” and (my personal favorite) “Roadhouse Blues.”
Wah Chang was a Chinese-American artist and prop designer. Today he’s most recognized for his iconic designs on the television series Star Trek. He was born on this day in 1917 and with that in mind, it being Asian-Pacific Heritage Month, me planning on going to see the Star Trek Into Darkness tonight, and The Wrath of Khan on in the background, now seems like a good time to reflect on his genius.
Wah Ming Chang (鄭華明) was born 2 August, 1917 in Honolulu, when Hawai’i was still a territory. His father, Dai Song Chang, owned an art store and framing gallery. The Chang family moved to San Francisco in 1919 and the parents opened Ho Ho Tea Room on 315 Sutter Street, which quickly became a popular hangout for artists and bohemians. Wah’s mother, Fai Sue, was an artist and graduate of the California School of Arts and Crafts. As a young child, Wah also displayed a talent for art and at seven, he began a tutelage under artist Blanding Sloan. Wah had his first solo gallery show when he was just nine years old. His mother passed away when he was eleven and his father moved to Europe, leaving the child with Sloan and his wife, Mildred Taylor. Taylor, was a feminist writer, organizer and lecturer who in the 1920s displayed a strikingly non-stereotypical interest in East Asian cultures. Taylor introduced Wah to puppet-making, a skill which he would employ when he eventually began working in film.