We got a great review of or first full length album, Rural Sessions, in an Italian webzine specializing in electronic music, Electronique.It. The timing was great as we are doing the final work in preparation for our new album to be released very soon! Special thanks to Ivo D’Antoni for the wonderful and kind words! I still listen to this album, a lot, and enjoy it after all these years. It was a fruitful time for Multicast and for electronic music in general. That said, our new album is likely my favorite so far…hard to judge, we’ll stand them up side-by-side in another 15 years and see what’s what!
We released 3 different versions of Rural Sessions. The limited run of 500 marbled vinyl as seen above, then 1000 150g 2LPs and finally 500 CDs. The CD has the extended version of Laura where the LP has a reprise version. The reprise LP version was played on the late John Peel’s Radio One radio show.
Well, it is official, our new album is released! July 18th, 2016! The initial release is limited to Japan as an insert to the Iron Feather Journal magazine for the opening of the Sapporo Zine Festival in Hokkaido. We will be receiving a limited amount of magazines and will have a USA/World release in early September, the exact date is still to be determined.
As you wait for the next 6 weeks, you can preview the entire album here…
Front covers, both multi-color stenciled artwork!
IFJ / Multicaster back covers!
As the typical Multicast / Obliq Recordings way, we created each of the covers by hand. They are hand stenciled with recycled spray paint in multicolor! The Iron Feather Journal inserts are limited edition to 200, all hand-numbered. 100 will be released in Japan, 100 outside of Japan.
Multicaster album sleeves drying on the manufacturing line, by the river!
Here is what a spindle of 170 looks like!
Stack of Multicaster CDs.
Luckily my partner in crime, Cryptographics, is well versed at silk-screening and has the mass production process down! He first created a registration piece that was offset for the thickness of the cover. Then he created multiple stencils out of plastic to handle the ink. This project requires many stencils, one for each image on the cover that will have its own separate color. Thus, multiple iterations of paint and wait are required for the final cover to be complete!
Stencil registered with the first cover ready to go, as you can see all we do is move the left registration to the right side and we’re ready for the next image and colors.
Tasty ultra limited black cover gettings its second image sprayed
I received an email from an old friend who nows lives in Northern Japan asking if my band Multicast would be interested in another collaboration project with the Iron Feather Journal cyberpunk zine. Rewind back to 1999, the year the late Prince sings about, where we did our first collaborative project with the Zine. We produced a 10″ 4-track EP vinyl, silk-screened cover and included the Iron Feather Journal #17 magazine. Not only was this a fun project, but it was successful selling a 1000 copies worldwide.
The magazine has a really old-school feel as the pages are laid out by hand and then photocopied. None of this modern computer layout stuff for this zine! Content varies, but is cyber-culture and music related.
Multicast’s Iron Feather Journal #17, limited colored vinyl
The entire Iron Feather Journal #17 package, with record, magazine and 2-color silkscreened cover.
The Iron Feather Journal has moved to northern Japan and is planning the next zine to premiere at the Sapporo Zine Festival in mid-July. This time we’ll do a CD, a 10-track full length Multicast project. The number of magazines will be limited with some available here in the USA from Obliq Recordings after the festival. We plan to do 4-color stenciled cover art, each one will be hand created so they will likely all be unique.
Track selection and sequencing was completed in late April 2016. Mastering is scheduled for May 10th and we’ll send to press shortly after. Then they will be shipped to Japan and incorporated with the magazine which will be created there.
( Nathan Jantz, Dave Alexander, and Jeff Holland )
Carpe Sonum is proud to unveil the CD reissue of the limited LP-only recording from Multicast, originally mastered by Lupo at Dubplates & Mastering in 2005, BCH–including two bonus tracks not available previously–has been re-mastered for CD by Lupo, now at Calyx Mastering in Berlin. First gaining notoriety via their own Obliq Recordings imprint back in the early oughts, Colorado-based rural electronic musicians Dave Alexander, Jeff Holland, and Nathan Jantz haven’t exactly vanished from the scene, releasing a slew of digital-only work in the interim. Bahian Coastal Highway sounds ahead of its time, with rich harmonic texture and memorable melodies. The trio maintain that, ”the feel we were shooting for was about arrival and departure, on a journey to Another Green World. There are Brasilian rhythms & chords, exotica and jungle references” with soundscapes conjuring ”a new place, with new experiences met with open eyes…” At times, the Balearic, sunny environments suggested by most of these tracks seems at odds with the group’s former modus operandi, but then again, that’s precisely the point. Sidestepping pat categorical references, Multicast feel that this recording is their ”most refined and resolved effort, featuring crystalline beauty amid soap-opera melodies, meeting on the veranda in a sunny place. There is collaboration and interplay in the songwriting and structure that could only come from years of playing together, and through a telepathic musical connection.”
*1. Bahian Coastal Highway (4:36) *2. El Sid (5:15) 3. Underdub (5:17) 4. Departure (7:01) *5. The Only Thing I Adore (5:26) *6. Hawaii (4:50) 7.Pucuna (5:31) *8. Ansico (6:40) *9. Arrival (5:12) 10. Rotation (4:39) *recommended for airplay – all FCC compliant
R.I.Y.L: Boards of Canada, Tycho, Aphex Twin, Panabrite – Release Date: February 12, 2016
Contact for information sales & distribution: email@example.com
A group of music friends and I put out top releases of the year each year-end. I put up my picks from last year, instead of through email format, here on my blog with media attached (unlike the others, who just had text; one had a podcast)! This year was a bit different as my favorite finds were not necessarily new releases. Here are my picks of favorite new music from this last year.
As always, I start off with local musicians like myself; we all had a great year and more people should be talking about the great scene we have in the Denver/Boulder area!
Acidbat. The Magician.
There aren’t many artists in the area focusing on acid music, but there is one band I can always count on for straight up acid, and that is Acidbat. I had the opportunity to play a gig with him this year as well. This album is on the Cyberdyne label on limited cassette format limited to 15 (there are a few left, grab the media while you can!). http://acidbat.bandcamp.com. This album is a wonderful acid excursion through various techno styles. World-class acid from a local artist! Awesome!
Symbols + Translations
Not quite local, this Austin Texas resident co-manages the Obsolete Future record label which has strong local ties. This release is their first foray into acid music and it is a great one! Many moods and melodies tag along with the consistent acid lines weaving throughout the mix. My personal favorite is “How long is the coast of Britian” which starts off the b-side of this cassette release. Limited edition to 100 on cassette, still available if you’re fast.
This is a great local band who I hope to see much more out of them in the future! They did a lathe cut 7″ single and have this album available for free digitally on band camp! Cheers! Melodies and vocals are addictive, great tracks!
Now onto the other non-local artists and bands that I picked up in 2015!
MAKiNA GiRGiR – Torment
Coming out of France, on La Forme Lente Records out of Belgium, this amazing cold wave album came out in 2013 but I have searched for the limited edition silkscreened cover to no success; so I purchased this digital only (sad, but true) in 2015. This album is amazing; for any fan of synth-based alternative, cold wave, dark wave, new wave, etc. Cold, female vocals; stunning lead synth lines, and groovy tracks all the way through!
Solvent – C for Comfort
Solvent goes way back into the last 90s with his label Suction Records. Jason Amm is a purveyor of synth leads and melodies. This is his own creation with tribute to the classic composers of the new wave synth gods — Depeche Mode, Human League, Visage, Ultravox, etc. This 6-track cassette release is rock solid synth instrumentals all the way through. So happy to see Suction Records back in business, releasing very strong releases! Released in 2014, I rediscovered this label and placed an order for many awesome releases in early 2015!
Mark Van Hoen – The Worcester Tapes 1983 – 1987
I’m a huge Mark Van Hoen fan, synth/sampler aficionado! In case you are having problems recognizing the name, think Seefeel, Scala, Locust among other projects. The Tapeworm presents… put together his original demo tape from early works from the artist. Beautiful piano and reverb dosed synth pads on this cassette-only release of 150. Appreciate The Tapeworm going out of their way and putting this out there! Beautiful Eno-esque ambient music!
Mark McGuire – Beyond Belief
Mark McGuire has had a big year; starting a family and continuing to press new age style music. Definitely different than his prior band Emeralds, this contains beats, guitar and even some vocals. Still, wonderfully looped melodies as only Mark McGuire can do. This double orange swirl colored vinyl came with a bonus cassette release of remixes and a poster. Beautiful release!
New Order – Western Works Demos
Limited edition of 50, this grey swirl vinyl was released containing the Sheffield based Western Works Studio demo masters of New Order’s first tracks after the death of Ian Curtis. 6 tracks on this one, recorded on July 9, 1980. The demos are what you would think they would sound like–Joy Division still in shock from the loss of their front man…with all the emotion and rawness that would bring to the sessions. Dreams Never End (Mix #1 and #2), Homage, Ceremony, Truth and Are You Ready? All very different versions from other recordings. This is an amazing find!
Various – Something Cold
With my discovery of Suction Records releasing material again, I also discovered they are also distributing likeminded music. This album is one I purchased in my order with Suction in 2015. This is great coldwave tunes; every track is awesome! Several dance floor tracks too…well worth a listen! Vinyl is sold out, but I suspect you can find copies around…
Miss Kittin & The Hacker – Lost Tracks Vol. 1
Dark Entries Records out of San Francisco is on fire; releasing great gems old and new. This is true to the coldwave/demos I have spoken about in the last few highlighted releases, the original demo from 97-99 from this dynamic duo! Leather Forever is a club classic! Electro and cold wave! Think Drexciya or Dopplereffekt style electro!
Luke Vibert – Halloween Part 1
Looking to get part 2, this is a classic acid record like only Luke Vibert can put together. Halloween is a spooky acid anthem that would rock any dance floor. Jack U Whole is classic Chicago style acid house.
Acid Pauli & Nancy – iBang
Had this as a favorite like on Soundcloud for a while, but Katermukke decided to produce 4x 12″ singles with their favorite tracks, one of which is my favorite track from the label. I also like Animal Trainer and the other Acid Pauli tracks too. This is a fun dance floor remake using the classic Nancy Sinatra vocals.
AtomTM – Riding The Void EP
These took a while to get; I’m assuming due to excessively long pressing times for vinyl, but it was worth the wait. Atom TM remixes of Riding the Void from the HD album. I still haven’t gotten the HD video, I can’t seem to make myself purchase a low-fi DVD on an album called HD. Bluray only Uwe, that is the only acceptable format other than perhaps 16mm. These are wonderfully produced dance tunes.
Mato – All About That Bass
Believe it or not this was the first version of this track that I heard. I bought it on a whim because of the title; but this is a wonderful 7″ Reggae plate remaking of the classic pop song. All the right junk in all the right places…
Leon Switch featuring Alys Be – Make Your Move
Been listening to a lot of bass music from the UK, sub genres of dub step called Dungeon / 140. Slow, heavy bass dub. This track I heard on a London radio show by a guest mix from Leon Switch, who plays dub plates of his own works. Love the pop vocals on this cool dub / bass track. Finally released in December with a bunch of remixes by another artist Markee Ledge, but the original Leon Switch mix is the best. Digging other similar modern “pop” tracks in this style.
Flexi Picture Records
Hasenbart Zeotrope Flexi-disc
As many of you know, I’m a huge flexi record collector. This I found by Hasenbart Records out of Germany, simply a beautiful Christmas picture record that is lathe cut. Get one while you can, good luck!
Acidbat – Autumn Mourning
Extremely limited edition of hand made double-sided flexis from a 1940s lathe. Wonderful acid tracks by Denver’s premiere acid scout! Available for free in digital download, check out Autumn Mourning now!
The Beatles – All You Need Is Love
This is a Polish bootleg flexi-record postcard from the 70’s. The premise is they would take postcards and press music on them and distribute them throughout Poland where there wasn’t proper music distribution. I have six different, equally cool (by the same artist) postcards with this same song.
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 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 September and October.
Here is my workflow that so far is working pretty well…
Record the vinyl onto the Tascam DR-40E recorder
Pull the WAV files over to my computer
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
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).
Now that I have the track isolated, a scan it for any pops or clicks and take care of those if necessary.
I then normalize to peak values again. This will give me the hottest possible sound.
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.
I delete the original sound file and go to the next one.
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.
I drag the WAV files into CD-EX, a great ripping and encoding software using the LAME encoder. Old school but it works great.
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.
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…
I have received a couple of new really cool images in the last couple of days. First, is the cover to our new re-release of Bahian Coastal Hwy by Multicast. This is on Carpe Sonum records and should be mastered in a week or two. Then it goes to the pressing plant; hopefully we’ll see it by October?
Multicast – Bahian Coastal Hwy on Carpe Sonum Records
I also will be receiving a poster of this amazing artwork for the upcoming 2015 Full Moon Festival by M.E.S.S. The poster will be framed and on the wall for sure. This is going to be a great party and I’m looking forward to both our release and the party.
Been pulling records for this year’s Mother Earth Sound SystemFull Moon Festival, a 48-hours 2-stage music festival. It looks like I’ll have an extended set DJ/performing as Multicast (up to 6 hours!!) on the Earth stage Saturday afternoon/evening. The line-up looks incredible, and the venue is a rural outdoor ranch in the mountains near Silverthorne. I will bring many styles and change the music up playing dub, reggae, electro, acid, ambient and some 140-dubstep; mainly a more chill out stage providing balance to the main pounding techno Moon stage.
I will also bring some gear and add in some original stuff here and there. I’m opening up for the Normal Ones so very excited about that; and perhaps we’ll do some experimentation for a while between sets!
Carpe Sonum Records out of Colorado is digitally releasing for the first time our album Bahian Coastal Hwy. by Multicast. It will contain two bonus tracks that didn’t make it on the vinyl release and will be remastered by my favorite engineer Lupo @ Calyx (ex Dubplates & Mastering).
Been waiting for this day for a while.
I remember the day our original master came back from D+M, we were just floored on how wonderful these world-class mastering engineers could make us sound! Now, 10 years later, the technology has folded many times and I anxiously await the magic that Andreas will do.
Check out the preview, and enjoy! Thanks for your support!