Digitizing Records

I purchased a Tascam handheld recorder about a month ago so I can record my live sets, environmental recordings, and for digitizing records for listening to in the car.  The model is DR-40e.  The E is the “enhanced” processor feature according to the Guitar Center rep I talked to on the phone; although there is no real documentation of what this really benefits me anywhere on the net that I can find, and the rep was clueless.  It was a good deal, and it is a stellar recorder so far from my limited usage of it.  Good battery life so far, although I bought the power supply for it to save on batteries!

The Tascam DR-40e is my new recorder. So far I really like it; I've recorded records, a couple of live sets, and some environmental sounds with the built in microphones. Sound great!

The Tascam DR-40e is my new recorder. So far I really like it; I’ve recorded 25 records, a couple of live sets, and some environmental sounds with the built in microphones. Sounds great!

I pulled a random assortment of new and old records and have been listening to them in their entirety while recording them.  This has been a really fun process.  My card had accumulated 25 records so I figured it was time to dump the WAV files onto my computer and process them for digital listening.

Collage of the records I digitized this round.

Collage of the records I digitized this September and October.

Here is my workflow that so far is working pretty well…

  1. Record the vinyl onto the Tascam DR-40E recorder
  2. Pull the WAV files over to my computer
  3. In Sony’s Sound Forge software, load the file and normalize it once (to peak value, so no compression occurs) to get good levels.  I go in and mark the beginning and end of each track; delete the unwanted sections
  4. In Sound Forge, once the tracks’ beginning and ending points are marked, I simply double click inside of that region and it is selected.  I then <CTRL><V> (cut) and <CTRL><E> (paste to new).
  5. Now that I have the track isolated, a scan it for any pops or clicks and take care of those if necessary.
  6. I then normalize to peak values again.  This will give me the hottest possible sound.
  7. I save in a folder with a standard filename.  The folder name is Artist – Title – Catalog Number – Year.  The filename is Track Number – Song Title.  These go in a wavs subfolder.  I get the proper filenames and catalog numbers and images from Discogs.com.
  8. I delete the original sound file and go to the next one.
  9. Once I have all the albums edited, I can go in and create MP3s for lossy listening; I typically use MP3s for portable devices to save space and given there is a significant amount of ambient noise in “portal environments”, so lossy isn’t that big of deal.
  10. I drag the WAV files into CD-EX, a great ripping and encoding software using the LAME encoder.  Old school but it works great.
  11. I then drag the MP3s into MP3Tag, I like this program for consistently tagging MP3s.  I select the entire album, use the auto-convert feature to snag the track number and song title, I add the Artist, Album and Year manually (using copy/paste form Discogs if there are special characters).  I then drag the cover art into the program and save the files.
  12. I end up with lossless WAV files (someday I may convert to FLAC, but right now I don’t care about space for lossless) and MP3 files with consistent tagging.

All of this does take a while, of course the recording of the records is real-time; and then I processed 25 records (mostly EPs) in about 3 hours.  Not too bad.  Now that I have the Tascam DR-40e figured out and a process refined, I’m going to pick some of my favorite records that I have never seen digitized files and continue the process!

Here is the first round of 25 records using this new workflow…

Here is the list of records that I digitized. Gonna start listening to them in the car tomorrow!

Obliq aritsts on Pete Namlook tribute album.

Four (4) *NEW* Multicast tracks (under Obliq Recordings side projects guises Replicast, Ted Sturgeon and Freq Modif) are featured on the late Pete Namlook tribute Die Welt ist Klang on Carpe Sonum Records!  We are honored to be a part of this tribute to one of the pioneers of electronic music along with 30+ other great artists!

Here are the individual tracks:

Ted Sturgeon – Sea Foam Green

Freq Modif – Spy Hunter

Replicast (Multicast) – Gurrr

Multicast – Lowrider in Cairo

Multicast on Sleeping Pills OST

Back over 10 years ago a local movie company Kinotonik produced this awesome 35mm underground film Sleeping Pills.  Featured in the soundtrack are several Obliq Recordings tunes.  The movie’s Director Michael Lauter has decided to put a REDUX version out on HD Bluray format!

This is an Indiegogo funding project, so jump out there and support it! One neat thing about this movie is it was filmed in many unique Colorado architectural facilities that have since been destroyed! This film is preserving these interesting Colorado relics!

Looking forward to finally having a copy of this great movie to watch again and hearing our music on a Bluray HD movie!

Obliq New and Re-releases with bonus tracks

Howdy.

Happy New Year!

In celebration I recently posted about 100 free tunes on Bandcamp.com. A great site; these are free so preview them and download anything that you like! And tell your friends! Many of our older albums have been stacked with rare and unreleased material. The newest album is a collaboration with the great Denver band Equulei. Multicast and Freq Modif are represented here.  Look forward to more releases in 2014!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Picketwire Canyonlands meets Multicast

Had a fun trip with the Delockroys and my family to the Picketwire Canyonlands south and west of La Junta, Colorado. We signed up for the US Forest Service’s new Guided Auto Tour which is an alternative to the 5+ mile hike in the heat of South-Central Colorado! This was very near the old Santa Fe Trail and features a bunch of history; old and “new”. The USFS employee was very knowledgeable in the Geology and History of the area including many legends and stories! I was a little bummed that we didn’t see the Petroglyphs that were advertised all over the brochures; those were along the trail you hike in; but I guess there needs to be some incentive to get folks to hike the trail too! 🙂

The main reason for the trip was to see the Jurassic dinosaur tracks–Brontosaurus and Allosaurus side-by-side! These are the longest tracks by far in any Morrison formation and for sure the longest set anywhere in North America. There was some flooding in August that had not been cleaned up yet (not the terrible flooding we had along the Front Range in September) but it still was fantastic. Normally the Purgatoire River is a trickle and you don’t get your feed wet; that wasn’t the case as you’ll see this trip! Colorado has had a much wetter summer than in the past decade this year!

The video says it all; enjoy! Feel free to comment on YouTube or this blog posting if you have any questions! Oh, and a shameless plug; my band Multicast‘s song “Spitfire” is the soundtrack to the video. Enjoy!

Obliq Service Center – Elektron Repair

Elektron Repair Session!  Nathan and Jahnavi stopped by and we replaced broken potentiometers on our Elektron MachineDrums and MonoMachines! It was a great evening when we got everything working again!

Here are the basic repair instructions that inspired us to do this ourselves…although we found there wasn’t much of a need to take apart the encoders if you get all the solder with a good solder sucker and wick.





Check out Nate & Jahnavi’s photos of the session!

Obliq artists submit tracks for Namlook Tribute

Carpe Sonum RecordsFor those into contemporary electronic music you may have heard of the Fax +49-69/450464 label (and many sublabels) out of Germany, run by Pete Namlook. In the mid-90s I remember while working at the record store getting in new disks WEEKLY, yes weekly, and we’d sell many copies to faithful fans and electronic music connoisseurs alike! The music is great and the label was strong!

The music was mostly in the “Ambient” style but there were many great releases that were dancefloor oriented, trance and experimental. What drew me to the Fax label, aside from the great music, was Pete Namlook’s analog synth collection and also all the old-school artists that he introduced to the contemporary scene by doing collaboration releases such as Klaus Schulze’s Dark Side of the Moog series, etc.

Unfortunately Pete Namlook passed away recently and his world distributor, Ear/Rational Music out of Colorado, decided to put together a tribute release on the new label Carpe Sonum inspired by and dedicated to Namlook. The tribute release will be a mega-box set including tracks from existing alumni of the Fax label and also with fan tracks. The vinyl set is going to be killer! The fan track’s inclusion on the 3 CDs is chosen completely by fan vote!

Our bands have several tracks submitted for the release and would love for you to vote for us. The track names and artists have been scrambled to focus the voters on the music rather than a popularity contest; and I can’t publically post our tracks here, but if you contact me I’ll forward the ones to be sure to vote “Love It!” on. 🙂

Here are the rules of the Namlook Tribute. Here are the tracks to listen to and vote on.

Hopefully we make the cut!!!   Thanks for your vote!

UPDATE:  We went through every track, here were our personal favorites:

  • esbrakoi, irblotso, jinnubot, plemmith
  • archibrot, bijorsti, demyalip, graklopy, gozbilto, graklopy

Fax +49-69/450464

New Multicast track – Low Rider in Cairo

“Take a little trip, take a little trip with me…” ‘Low Rider in Cairo’ is a hard acid excursion through the streets of Cairo at night, with Multicast driving… The squelch control is set to 11.

This was a fun session; taking off of the old “lowrider” classic!  We were in “jam” mode and came up with this acid line and melody.  A bit more rockin’ than some of the chill out Multicast material.

Enjoy!