"Max Conundra" - notes

Production notes for "Max Conundra," from the Terra Organization LP:


uncropped screenshot of Tracktion Waveform page

1. Beatburner drum loop (early '00s sample pack)
2. Bass riff with "squelchy" high pass filter (Octatrack sample pack)
3. MIDI notes for Loomer Aspect riffs (played in Carla plugin rack, rendered, then muted)
4. Rendered Loomer Aspect riff
5. Rendered Loomer Aspect riff
6. Recording of ADDAC wav player module bass riff -- timestretched
7. Recording of ADDAC wav player module organ riff -- timestretched
8. Recording of ADDAC wav player module organ riff -- timestretched
9. Recording of ADDAC wav player module tuned percussion riff -- timestretched
10. Multisampler playing kit I made of Vermona DRM1 percussion hits -- bitcrushed

russiagate narratives (with realistic adherents)

An article in the American Conservative about the "deep state" helpfully breaks Russiagate opinion into two camps. Annotations (in bold) provide further elaboration.

One narrative -- let’s call it Narrative A -- has it that honorable and dedicated federal law enforcement officials developed concerns over a tainted election in which nefarious Russian agents had sought to tilt the balloting towards the candidate who wanted to improve U.S.-Russian relations and who seemed generally unseemly. Thus did the notion emerge, quite understandably, that Trump had “colluded” with Russian officials to cadge a victory that otherwise would have gone to his opponent. This narrative is supported and protected by Democratic figures and organizations, by adherents of the “Russia as Threat” preoccupation, and by anti-Trumpers everywhere, particularly news outlets such as CNN, The Washington Post, and The New York Times.

It is also very popular with DC bureaucrats worried about their jobs, military contractors, and people not skeptical of the Clintons (who originated the story).

The other view -- Narrative B -- posits that certain bureaucratic mandarins of the national security state and the outgoing Obama administration resolved early on to thwart Trump’s candidacy. After his election, they determined to undermine his political standing, and particularly his proposed policy toward Russia, through a relentless and expansive investigation characterized by initial misrepresentations, selective media leaks, brutal law enforcement tactics, and a barrage of innuendo. This is the narrative of most Trump supporters, conservative commentators, Fox News, and The Wall Street Journal editorial page, notably columnist Kimberley Strassel.

It also happens to be the view of normal, levelheaded people all over the world who aren't dependent on a DC job. This includes Sanders supporters, Green voters, assorted libertarians, and what might colloquially be called "anyone with a brain."

"Imaginedgy" - notes

Production notes for "Imaginedgy," from the Terra Organization LP:


uncropped screenshot of Tracktion Waveform page

The rather hideous title (originally a placeholder but so awful I decided to keep it) is a portmanteau of the song's main components: the 8-bit synth module Edges and the "Imagina" series of commercial drum loops from Tracktion. The idea was to meld geeky with urban cool, arcade with triphop, etc etc
So about half the tracks above are drum beats from a live drummer, manicured and FX-ed in various ways, and half are sequenced riffs from videogame-y Eurorack modules: in addition to Edges (which ended up not being used very much if at all), these include the SIDGuts and SIDGuts Deluxe.
Other additions are the RetroMod Fat softsynth playing some quasi-jazzy, seventh-style chords and a bassline wav from the Octatrack libary.
The piece starts out "slow and cool" and then speeds up for no reason to reach the heavily flanged climax!

Keep Min 2 Dot, "Wounded Golden Section"


A quick review of a Bandcamp LP, Wounded Golden Section by Keep Min 2 Dot.

The instrumentation is traditional but varied -- guitar, keyboard, reeds, bass, drums -- but doesn't follow roles assigned to the typical jazz combo.

WGS shares affinities with free jazz or RIO but exists in an ambiguous state of "might be studio/might be live performance." It doesn't sound overtracked and it's not evident if "the computer" or DAWs were employed at all. It feels very organic and live-improvisational.

Structure-wise, it's "full" in the sense of sonically and compositionally rich. Each song is a mesh or skein of granular moments -- like atoms -- consisting of a cluster of instruments, tunes, or rhythms.

Each atom has its own mood and set of musical associations, and feels as if it could be spun off into its own composition.

The overall mesh of the tune works like a complex abstract painting, with threads that could be pulled or followed.

All that said, it is not dense, sonic bombardment a la noise music but an "open weave" with overlapping moments flowing from one to the next.

The performances on all instruments are good-to-excellent, almost like samples of "great licks" since the quality or excellence is not in the service of any kind of traditional song structure or development.

In other words, enjoy that guitar chop because you probably won't be hearing it again. On to the next chop! (In a good way.)