Guitar/Computer Madness

Weekly highlights

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Updates every Saturday.

Broadcast #18 - Mar 18, 2023

Albums of the Week: Doppelgänger by The Fall of Troy, I'll Try Living Like This by death's dynamic shroud.wmv, and blanket ep by the eyebags.

Entry 18 on the 18th, hah...

Doppelgänger is one of my all-time favourite records and I love it to death. I have listened to it countless of times and the most recent relisten was the other day, where it's been a while since I've listened to The Fall of Troy. The Fall of Troy has changed my life, but that's a story for another day. Doppelgänger is a collection of incredible guitar riffs and crazy beautiful melodies tying together time signature changes and screamo. I deem The Fall of Troy to be a post-hardcore essential for anyone into the genre, and their progressive touches make it even better, and are why I'm drawn to the band. Them and Chon fall under a term I've seen: swancore. The genre's highlight is "noodle riffs." What impresses me isn't just the noodle riffs themselves, but the fact that their guitarist Thomas Erak was so young at the time of recording, with earlier works exhibiting similar incredible skill. While it isn't Album of the Week for now, their record Manipulator is a major recommendation from me; it's a very fucking amazing work and I am obsessed with it. It never gets old.

I'll Try Living Like This is an album I found randomly. It's Album of the Week because it has a different take on vaporwave. It felt otherwordly (yes I know the schtick of vaporwave is that floaty feeling of being transported, but this one felt different, more melancholy) and touching. It's an awesome album, unconventional for its genre.

Obscure artist of the day! The eyebags. Lovely lo-fi slowcore work. It was comforting to listen to.

Today's topic: if you had a year (or more) of free time, what would you use it for?

Do I have the necessary focus? Are my eyes on a particular goal?

Until next time.

Broadcast #17 - Mar 11, 2023

Albums of the Week: WASTEISOLATION by Black Dresses, WLFGRL by Machine Girl, You Will Never Know Why by Sweet Trip, and velocity : design : comfort. by Sweet Trip.

This week's album was a suggestion from a friend. It's very different from what I usually listen to, but I enjoyed it a lot. WASTEISOLATION is a 2018 noise pop album by Black Dresses, and it has an intensely and positively abrasive sound. The album deals with heavy topics and I found it very cathartic, and I find this type of music comforting rather than disquieting, and that was the very motive behind the album, according to what Black Dresses have themselves said.

Artist of the Week: Sweet Trip

Man, how I love Sweet Trip. I absolutely adore their music and how it makes me feel. There is incredible creativity behind their works, and each of their albums has a very unique sound. Sweet Trip was an indie duo that dabbled in IDM (intelligent dance music), electronic ambient, experimental, shoegaze (though a very alternative kind), and indie pop. They have also been described as dream pop, for their soothing floating sound, but I find the fuzzy glitches to be more significant to their sound, in my opinion. I was introduced to Sweet Trip as shoegaze, hearing the song Milk before listening to the beautiful mess-by-design that is Velocity : Design : Comfort, an experimental electronic work that, to me, is a masterpiece. I believe it's best heard whole for the "entire story." It's utterly gorgeous and I thought it couldn't get better than that.

You Will Never Know Why is less IDM and more indie pop. Unlike their previous work, V:D:C, there is frequent use of acoustic guitar (and some electrical) and a much softer finish than the intentionally sharp, beepy V:D:C. However, You Will Never Know Why still carried their iconic electronic tings. In fact, hardly anything besides some of the guitar was acoustic, and this blend between the two qualities is what I referred to earlier as the unique sound. Lyrically, the album was emotional. This was juxtaposed by the relatively upbeat instrumentals, which to me made it all the more heart-wrenching. Acting and Pretending were particularly sad to me. I was obsessed with Acting for a long time. Milk was also sad until I learned what the song was about, and since then, it's been even sweeter. It still resonates with me, however, the same as it did back when I listened to it a lot with deep love. I related to it a lot, as an insomniac who was also heads over heels over someone at the time.

According to Roberto Burgos on an Instagram story:

"Milk is about an insomniac bitter that their lover gets to sleep. The chorus is sarcastic: fine, fall asleep, good for you, I'll be here awake forever."

After the hiatus they took post-You Will Never Know Why, Sweet Trip released A Tiny House, In Secret Speeches, Polar Equals in 2021 — their final work. It was a very gorgeous and elegant album, and listening to it, I had strong mental images of things. It was magical. It was a bit tragic, however, what it meant for the duo.

Until next time.

Broadcast #16 - Mar 4, 2023

Albums of the Week: Unreleased Tapes 1981-1984 by Mammane Sanni Abdoulaye, Silence and Wisdom by Deux Filles, and High Visceral Pt.1 (plus B-Sides) by Psychedelic Porn Crumpets.

Awesome albums.

Much of African history is overlooked and erased, being only of second thought to many, even among those into history. I don't know much outside of what I learned in world history books, but I am beginning to learn more now, through music and language. Music from various years, as well as some reads through Wikipedia on Africa's languages, allowed me to look at culture. The unreleased tapes by Mammane Sanni Abdoulaye, which I found through a friend who found it through someone else, is a gorgeous synthesizer album.

Silence and Wisdom has a story with a hilarious twist. I'll copy what was written in the video description:

The short, mysterious career of the female French duo Deux Filles is bookended by tragedy. Gemini Forque and Claudine Coule met as teenagers at a holiday pilgrimage to Lourdes, during which Coule's mother died of an incurable lung disease and Forque's mother was killed and her father paralyzed in an auto accident. The two teens bonded over their shared grief and worked through their bereavement with music. However, after recording two critically acclaimed albums and playing throughout Europe and North America, Forque and Coule disappeared without a trace in North Africa in 1984 during a trip to visit Algiers. The short and terribly unhappy lives of Forque and Coule are at the root of the small but fervent cult following the mysterious duo have gained since their disappearance, not least because the placid, largely instrumental music on the duo's albums betrays no hint of the sorrow that framed their personal lives. This would be a terribly sad story if a word of it were true. In reality, Deux Filles were Simon Fisher Turner, former child star/teen idol and future soundtrack composer, and his mate Colin Lloyd Tucker. Turner and Tucker left an early incarnation of The The in 1981 to pursue another musical direction. Turner claims that the idea of Deux Filles came to him in a dream, and he and Tucker strictly maintained the fiction throughout the duo's career. Not only did they pose in drag for the album covers, the duo once even played live without the audience realizing that the tragic French girls on-stage were actually a pair of blokes from south London. Deux Filles released two albums through Turner and Tucker's Papier Mache label, 1982's “Silence & Wisdom” and 1983's “Double Happiness”. Both albums blend watery piano, occasionally ghostly vocals, sheets of synthesizers, heavily processed guitars and the barest minimum of percussion. Drifting and wistful, they’re a pair of lost ambient gems from a time when the genre had yet to mature, an excellent example of post-Eno, pre-Orb ambient music.

Artist of the Week - Yoshiko Sai

I listened to three of her albums, Mangekyou (1975), Mikkou (1976), Taiji no Yume (1977), and Taklamakan (2008). All of those but Taiji no Yume are up on my channel, whereas the missing album is on Vimeo, because of copyright.

Her work is incredible avant-garde folk and some psychedlic work. The blend is a very beautiful fine work. The appealing sound is accompanied by her unique voice, which you'd like if you're into Hako Yamasaki's powerful voice. I loved Taiji no Yume most. I was hooked. The production on Mangekyou and Taiji no Yume was done by Yuji Ohno (大野 雄二), while the production and arrangement on Mikkou and Taklamakan were done by Kuni Kawachi (河内邦夫) and Makoto Yoshimori (吉森 信) respectively. The artwork on the covers was by Yoshiko Sai herself, and so was the songwriting.

Until next time.

Broadcast #15 - Feb 25, 2023

Albums of the Week: La Grasa de las Capitales by Serú Girán, Birds In The Ground by by Eiafuawn, Departure Songs by We Lost The Sea, and Sevil by Sevil.

Quick-firing this one. La Grasa de las Capitales? Simply spectacular. I was in awe at its beauty. It's a work of art. The band is what they call a "supergroup", meaning each of the individual members were already successful artists before joining forces into forming the band, and the result is incredible. Birds In The Ground, by "The Duster Guy", which I didn't know when I listened to it, but it was cool to know. I enjoyed it a lot. Departure Songs. Goodness, that was a strong one. Just listen to it. It was unexpected. Sevil, added days after I listed the others. Beautiful, beautiful Azerbaijani jazz-funk. In the words of a friend, "Blessed be Funked Up East."

Today's a special one simply because there are many albums to list this week, from the ones I listened to. However, for the sake of ease of reading, they aren't all "Album of the Week", so, I present to you a short list instead:

  • Alone by Evan Brewer (impressive solo bass guitar album for lovers of prog metal)
  • Classical Current by Laurindo Almeida (jazz album that includes some beautiful bossa nova takes on classical music)
  • Anthology Album by Velly Joonas (the only available release besides her single; uploaded on YouTube)
  • Computer Savvy by The J. Arthur Keenes Band
  • Manipulator by The Fall of Troy

I excluded albums that were previously Album of the Week, albums I didn't finish listening to, and a cult classic.

There's more but I'm saving them up for the next posts.

Today's topic: this blog.

TL;DR: this blog is about music I find and listen to that I enjoy or find noteworthy, not one only about masterpieces that are a must-listen "for everyone" (even if I consider it to be fantastic, out of my love for music). Stick around if you're into that and want to discover music. Thanks for supporting this blog by reading it.

There are tons of albums that I have saved but have not listened to yet. I believe such albums are worth sharing with the world, which is why I collect them publicly. Of course, what I do isn't as significant as the work of those who find and share those records on the internet. I am grateful for them. Hopefully, I will write more about those when I listen to them. I was thinking about this because I was questioning what the criteria behind Albums of the Week are, and they haven't changed since launch: whatever catches my attention. At first, that "whatever" focused on albums I listened to on-repeat at the time of writing the entry's' respective broadcast, but since one of the entries, I began only including albums I was listening to in full during that week, almost always albums I haven't listened to before. There is also some factor here, sometimes it's albums that I really liked, and other times it's albums I found interesting or worth mentioning, which aren't the most written-about, if at all. Sometimes I want to share albums because I think they're great, or classics, or a must-listen, but other times I want to focus on the lesser known. Music is being made all the time. There are countless bands and artists out there that not many know about. It doesn't matter whether they're making incredibly interesting works or just have a cool sound to them, they're making music and I admire that. Just because a band doesn't hold a name you hear frequently, it doesn't mean that it isn't worth listening to. I found some fresh band and a song of theirs caught my attention. I'll check the whole thing later. Hey you! I don't care what you do, but if you do it with passion, keep at it!

I haven't looked at previous entries as I write this, so my sense of quantity could be false, but over time, I've been trying to focus more on the "this album is cool" than the "I really love this album and/or this is known to be awesome". That is, I want to let some hidden gems shine rather than focus on what is known to be good, or "obviously good" (based on reputation). Now, it wouldn't hurt to drop some albums I have previously heard and really loved if I find them worth covering, unless they've been covered numerous times already.

I also would like to mix it up. I can't write reviews every week, so I might offer a mixed bag of genres, but when I do feel like writing, I think it would be better to focus on one genre or artist per broadcast. We will see. After all, I tend to pick albums from what I actually listened to that week and highlighted songs on whim — either from the same week or something cool from one of my playlists.

Well, you know, what I include in Highlighted Music is sometimes from albums I love, but the only reason I don't write about them as Albums of the Week is because I didn't see a reason to write about them, but honestly, maybe I'd dedicate a day to my all-time favourite to write some thought-out reviews. This ended up being a bit of a ramble, but I believe I said what I wanted to say.

I have a few genres and artists in mind for upcoming broadcasts. We'll see which come before which.

Until next time.

Broadcast #14 - Feb 18, 2023

Albums of the Week: The Madness Of Many by Animals as Leaders and Collage by Collage.

Fantastic! Fantastic! Fantastic! Fantastic! Fantastic! Great damn album (djent and prog-metal). The Brain Dance is near-unreal!

Collage made it to the weekly highlights again. This album is jazzier than the one I reviewed. It's very high-quality work.

Today's topic: atmosphere in art.

A topic that isn't for everyone, especially not on a music blog, but I was thinking about the game Ico. I got some worldbuilding inspiration and the images that my head was immersed in were those of paintings and 3D game environments: those palettes and spaces - are certain ideas better expressed in one medium over the other? Yes! Taking advantage of your medium is refreshing. If you're illustrating a comic, it's up to you whether to keep the material traditional and adaptable or to push the bounds of the medium. If I illustrate a comic, maybe I'd try and integrate or take advantage of it being a comic, such as paneling or paging tricks, or, of course, pouring love into visuals. I'm given a space of a fixed size. How will I use it?

Until next time.

Broadcast #13 - Feb 11, 2023

Albums of the Week: Hukkunud Alpinisti Hotell by Sven Grünberg and Trilogie De La Mort by Éliane Radigue.

So there's this composer ... tucks hair behind ear and bats eyelashes

Excuse that. I uploaded all of Sven Grünberg's studio discography to my channel, and I have been listening to it.

"Hukkunud Alpinisti" hotell is a 1979 Estonian film based on the Russian novel of the same name by Arkady and Boris Strugatsky (the Strugatsky brothers). The film is directed by Grigori Kromanov, with music by Sven Grünberg. Sven Grünberg is an influential Estonian composer with cult status, specialising in ambient electronic music. His 3-disc compilation album, "Hukkunud Alpinisti" hotell, released in 2001, contains more than just the soundtrack of the film. I was wondering why the compilation held the film's name and cover if it had so much more than its OST, and I managed to find the answer on an Estonian radio site:

Composer Sven Grünberg has created music for more than a hundred films, but it all started with director Grigori Kromanov's 1979 mystical sci-fi film "Hotel of the Dead Alpinist", based on the story of the Strugatsky brothers. The soundtrack of the film, which became a cult film, was created by chance by a young composer, only 22 years old at the time.

Sven Grünberg's film music collection "The Hotel of the Dead Alpinist" contains a selection of the rich film music created by the composer during his 25 years of activity. The three-CD collection includes, among others, music from the films "Corrida" (1982), "Times of the Wolf Laws" (1985), "The Magic of the Forest" (1985), "Näkimadalas" (1987-88), "The Wikman Boys" (1994-95), The Curse of Snake Valley (1987) and many other screenplays.

From Klassika Raadio. It turns out that the discs are a collection of all the music he made for films between 1977 and 2001. I figured that since it's a compilation of gorgeous OSTs by him, it would make sense to emphasize his most popular work, that is the titular film.

I listened to the entire thing and there were some tracks that I really loved. Coincidentally, I was introduced to him by Murumart.

Today's topic: Happy birthday, Murumart!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! (I suppose this many are enough.)

The music shared today is dedicated to you.

Murumart introduced me to Valged hommikud by Mess (Sven Grünberg's prog-rock band). A gorgeous song it is.

Until next time.

Broadcast #12 - Feb 4, 2023

Albums of the Week: good kid, m.A.A.d city by Kendrick Lamar, To Pimp a Butterfly by Kendrick Lamar, and Mr. Morale & the Big Steppers by Kendrick Lamar.

Yes. They're all Lamar today. I listened to those three albums and loved them all. Last week, I started with some 90s hiphop besides the rap that I already listen, but then I asked for modern rap recommendations, because I wanted to change my mind on it all being trash. Kendrick Lamar surpassed my expectations.

In all three albums, Kendrick told through honest lyrics stories that aren't enough-talked-about. The albums were powerful and touching, at times intense and at others melancholy. There was a lot of artistry put into those works, and I was impressed by the instrumentals, as he used styles not typically incorporated into rap, such as the jazz and soul in some snippets of Mr. Morale (the album). In all three albums, I listened attentively, because I was being told important stories.

I loved To Pimp a Butterfly the most. It's nearly a masterpiece, and I really enjoyed the sound of it. Kendrick Lamar is worth checking out if you would like to expand your repertoire and musical horizons. My favourite detail about Lamar's body of work was told to me by a friend:

"people say kendrick's albums always imitate different mediums
gkmc is a movie
tpab is a poem, etc.
i think the newest is a play"

Today's topic: do you have an interest in any languages or linguistics?

I've been learning more about linguistics lately as a result of dipping into Estonian and the IPA. I've specifically learned about terms used to described primary and secondary articulation.

Until next time.

Broadcast #11 - Jan 28, 2023

Albums of the Week: world tour by 3nd, Days Of Future Passed by The Moody Blues, and Emerson, Lake & Palmer by Emerson, Lake & Palmer.

3nd is a Japanese band that impressed me very quickly with their instrumental math rock album, world tour. The songs in this album are solidly consistent, following a general style as so: imagine four channels or tunnels, arranged in an oval or diamond configuration. The bass guitar stays below, running with the song, but the bass lines are very melodic in nature. On top, the song is pumped by the drums, which are pushing it forward and forward. The sides are embellished by the minimal rhythm guitar and the faster lead guitar. The reason why I put the guitars on the sides is because that's what they seem to be defining, structurally: the outline. I feel that they have more to do with shaping the song than singing a melody, given the regularity. That is also why I called the songs consistent. Once the guitars kick in, that's what the song is. If there are any changes in sections, the guitars direct those changes. Anyway, the intricacies of the bass were, in my humblr opinion, the strongest point about the album.

I really liked midroll, waltz for lilly, and end of summer. LOTUS was also beautiful, while filter in dust was surprisingly intense, so I loved it. I listened to waltz for lilly a couple of times before, because I loved it a lot, but it wasn't until I heard the rest of the album that I was immediately siezed and captivated by end of summer. That song's unbelievably good. I listened to it a normal amount of times in a short span (lying). I was obsessed and felt energized listening to it.

If you like instrumental math rock, you'll like this band.

Next up is the classic by The Moody Blues. The song Nights in White Satin was sent to me by a friend a few months ago (I do wonder whether he still checks this out haha), and I adored it very much. It wasn't often that I heard a song like that (not the genre, but the feel). On the 24th, while listening to a shuffled queue, Dawn: Dawn Is A Feeling came up, and I fell in love. I mean, I went insane for a bit, so I listened to it again and again. I thought, "This is good stuff, I'm so gonna review this album," so I listened to the whole thing, but also a few others of their songs, because they were in the Deluxe Edition. Anyway, the first track was out of this world, you may not know this, but I fall head over heels for flute and string tracks, specifically in old music, so I thought, "They put drugs in this album, man." Maybe they did. I really loved the cameos of the rest of the album in the introductory track. Well, at first, I only recognized Nights and Dawn (whose motif repeats in a few other tracks) and I was in love again. Anyway. Unfortunately, my interest declined for a few seconds sometimes in the middle tracks, but I enjoyed the album a lot anyway, because those moments were saved by the flutes and strings because they are a delight. The Afternoon felt a bit too long. I loved it at first but it just kept on going. The Evening got me back into the mood, and so the listen was worth it. Of course, the album ends with The Night. After that I listened to it and Dawn a lot in the same sitting. You know what? I'll listen again. I don't want to be let down by any track, so I'll let them grow on me. Don't get me wrong, I didn't dislike them, because the melodic work is very gorgeous. Alright, now that I've put the album on and lost my mind over the first track's intro again (and recognizing the melodies of the rest of the album), let's continue writing. By the way, when I said that I fell in love with the music, I mean it was very strong; it was like loving an actual person.

Lastly, Self-titled by Emerson, Lake & Palmer is their debut album. It's a 1970 prog album—do I need to explain?

Today's topic: what was the most thought-provoking question you've been asked?

I began publishing my thoughts and opinions on Teeth in Vitro. I don't really know why I hesitated for so long. Well, I could come up with a few reasons, but I guess I don't like publicity after all. Too many people have checked my site out while it was "empty", and the rate is only getting more rapid. It bothered me.

While it isn't album of the week since I'm adding this sentence on publication day, but Long Live by The Chariot is a good album. I listened to the first track over and over. The part where the drums come in is so good.

Until next time.

Broadcast #10 - January 21st, 2023

Albums of the Week: Kadriko by Collage, The Collection by Lena Chamamyan, and Lateralus by TOOL.

I forgot to finish Siddhartha. There isn't much left and I should have finished it ages ago. Oh well. I am currently studying for an exam, so I try to focus less on fun. Whenever I'm not studying, I'm coding with friends or chatting. At all times, I'm listening to music. That's great - it also keeps the blog going.

Back in September, I planned on finishing Ocarina of Time in the next holiday. I ended up not doing that. I didn't feel like booting into my old computer to play it. I will do it someday. Onto today's broadcast.

I have been listening to a lot of old Estonian music lately, so it's been popping up in weekly music highlights and such, but I also found a pretty good psychedelic folk slash modal jazz album, Kadriko by Collage, from 1974. The band's "thing" seems to be experimental folk and jazz, and their sound is certainly interesting. The album opens with singing that is clearly traditional in style, then it flows into the song of its namesake, later followed by a flute that will be prevalent throughout the album (which I like). The main lyrical portion of the song is a vocal harmony that repeats throughout the track. As the percussion set in, a jazz sound takes up the space, and is then joined by a fiddle. The mesh of jazz and folk is done in a way I've never heard before.

The next track, Une Sulased, is much calmer than the happy and energetic Kadrilaul, being jazzier than it is folky. I love it. The fourth track, Halb Sirp, starts off in a style similar to Kadrilaul, but with a different mood. The entrance of piano and sax was damn gorgeous, and just as you thought it was wonderful, it's further elevated by the harmony of scat. The track end with harmonized acapella vocals. The song feels very complete, but I wish it were longer. The following tracks are jazz, some with pretty flute parts, so I don't have much to say, but what drew my attention was the 7th track, Venna sõjalugu, which sounds like a shanty. It holds a simplistic folk structure with some dark-sounding percussion. It's a long one. This song marks the end of the A-side, and my review. Very good album.

I listened to Käokiri as well, which combines funk with a traditional folk sound. I am not familiar with pure Estonian traditional music, but I can recognize elements that I've also heard in traditional Finnish music in terms of vocals and lyrical repetition.

The Lena Chamamyan Collection is also folk and jazz. The singer's Syrian and the album's in Arabic, except for Sareri Hovin Mernem which is in Armenian. Anyway, I found the singer when I was getting into traditional Arabic music and folk (I found Lamma Bada Yatathanna in somebody's folk playlist, and I still like that song a lot), and I enjoyed her music a lot. I put the album on while working and it was very fun. Not every song blends jazz in, but those that do sound amazing. I'm unsure how many of those songs are original and how many are old songs that she's covering, but I could search that up later. Some songs are in Standard Arabic while others are in Syrian. Noticeably, the songs in Standard Arabic are more poetic, unsurprisingly, as a lot of traditional Arabic music is from poetry anyway. I can confidently assume that at least a couple of the ones in Syrian are traditional songs, because Arabic "people folk" is simple and repetitive and focuses on one topic or incident, making it easy to sing along to (see Qabl El-'Isha, "Before Dinner"; the song is about how the attitudes of people change before and after dinner, and it's literally said in one line that repeats: Before dinner, "no, sir," and after dinner, "yes" and "yes").

While the jazz-folk blend is present from the first track, the jazz was most prominent in the 8th track, Seher (Magic), and I was impressed. Now I didn't get into the album for the jazz, but for the traditional Arabic music, and that is done very beautifully in every song. The piano is a nice touch.

Now that we're on Arabic jazz, Kalthoum (Alf Leila Wa Leila) by Ibrahim Maalouf (Lebanese) is a very impressive, very beautiful Arabic jazz album. I was practically stunned the first time I heard the fourth movement (which got me to hear the rest of it), because it was my first time hearing traditional Arabic music elements in jazz, and so masterfully. I will listen to it again. Of course, even though I am generalizing what Arabic traditional music sounds like, it slightly varies by country, so the albums in this post have a Syrian and Lebanese style, respectively.

Hm done with the second listen and it wasn't as fantastic as the first time, but Movement IV didn't lose its magic.

Today's topic: bababooie.

The bababooies of life, when you've fucked up and know that you have.

It's The Dark Side of the Moon's 50th anniversary this year, so I had it on while writing this.

Until next time.

Broadcast #9 - January 14th, 2023

Albums of the Week: Rock Bottom by Robert Wyatt, Hidden World by Fucked Up, and Thursday Afternoon by Brian Eno.

Halfway into the week, I forgot about my plan to listen to and write about ambient for today's post.

Rock Bottom is a special work. I'd rather you listen to it yourself than get "spoiled" by my own impressions. Hidden World is a hardcore punk album sent to me by a friend. Thursday Afternoon is an ambient album consisting of two songs, which I enjoyed.

Today's topic: how do you deal with burnout?

I finished Bocchi! The Rock. It's nothing like what I usually watch because I don't care about anime girls and cheery anime, but I liked this one for its beautiful animation, awesome music, humour, and it's "just like me fr" protagonist. She's a socially anxious guitarist, so she's just like me fr. If you want to know why it's anime of the year, it's actually because of this scene.

Even though I've taken a break from composing, I brushed up some works this week. I mostly focused on learning songs, though, and it went well.

Until next time.

Broadcast #8 - January 7th, 2023

Albums of the Week: For You by Tatsuro Yamashita, Faust IV by Faust, and Tubular Bells Mike Oldfield.

Tatsuro Yamashita is one of my favourite artists. His song, LOVE SPACE is one of my all-time favourite songs, and has been my go-to feel-good song for years. I listened to SPACY, Cozy, and For You this week, but I picked For You because it's the one that inspired me to write about Yamashita here. I usually dislike very happy music, but Yamashita's music makes me feel hopeful. There's a special beauty to it. In this broadcast, I will be writing about other favourite songs and something I observed in two of them.

達郎山下 (Tatsuro Yamashita) - LOVE SPACE
Женя Теджетова и группа Салют - Юпитер*

Side note: Salyut means salute or fireworks, so I'm unsure which it is here. There is a Soviet space programme with the same name.

*Psst! I uploaded her studio album and its bonus side to my channel. I've seen both Zhenya and Evgenya used for her name, so I'm unsure, but I stuck with Evgenya, because it's on her Wiki page.

Here are two other pieces of music that I adore. I wanted to talk about a small detail.

Tchaikovsky - Valse Sentimentale
bo en - pale machine

They both make me feel the same unique way, in slightly different ways. There is a sense of hopelessness in the way that the sounds draw, as if tugging and pulling you with all their strengths until they themselves can't anymore. I am referring to the strings in Valse Sentimentale and the last section of pale machine (starting from 3:04, but especially as it goes on. I'm still in love with its chord progression. There's actually another significance of this album to me, but that's for another day).

The effect is caused by the volume control, I suppose. In the case of the violin, an analogue instrument, this is down by the intensity of how one draws the bow over, with a slowed-down gentleness quieting the sound; I believe the trick here is that the up-and-down is not a bell curve, but more of a quick rise and a slight linger, with a slight delay before it moves to the next note -- and repeat; it adds really nice anticipation. I'm not a violinist but I know that much. Not just that. I especially love that when a note reaches its momentum, it slides slowly to the next note while it declines; there's such a sad quality to it.

As for the electronic song, it could be the instrument itself or automation, but it's certainly has to do with the appearance and death of a sound over each iteration/note, delayed a bit, but collapses right after its peak. The "note thing" is here too, but if I were to be more technical, it's just a slide in pitch (with the note "leveling" at some point before it falls, or rather, crashes), but it makes a nice transition in music (the pitch bend slides yada yada). I liked the effect it had on me when I was obsessed with this song. It sounds almost desperate.

Today's topic: would you use email for non-professional communications?

I like the idea of emailing friends and acquaintances for whatever reason. There's something nice about seeing an email in your inbox, to which you can respond any time. Given the nature of it, you have time to think about your reponse. Also, this allows one to say all that they want to say and get a response accordingly, rather than talking bit by bit as they'd do when texting.

As usual, answers and topic suggestions are welcome in the guestbook (which I replaced) or by email.

Closing notes

I usually leave personal bits at the start of the broadcast. I'll see if I prefer that or putting them at the end. I guess they personalise this blog.

I have been very tired recently, as a result of what might be a sleep disorder.

Until next time.

Broadcast #7 - December 31st, 2022

Albums of the Week: Nattfiolen by Jordsjø, Untitled by Tera Melos, and Like Shadows by Ampere.

Happy New Year, fellas.

Every single song on Nattfiolen was beautiful. I was amazed. As you can probably tell, I adore 70s prog, and this 2019 album has that same classic sound to it. One time I said, "I'll die if they stop making 70s' prog" before realizing how dumb that sentence was, but it turns out I wasn't wrong. It's still there, except it being new makes it even better - so let's appreciate the prog without thinking too much about the 70s.

I listened to Pastoralia too. Good stuff.

Today's topic: what are your New Year's resolutions, if any?

I never adhere to them. It's the usual for the next year. I don't deem resolutions as the best concept, because I don't see why one should place expectations on themselves from the beginning of the year unless they have a specific goal like growth as a person. Other than that, most people set healthy habits to follow, but few have the discipline. I know I don't, so I stopped imposing them as a resolution and instead try to work through them however I can.

I'm thinking of keeping it simple: indulge in hobbies with the intention to improve (specifically in arts - I hope I could paint again), learn a new skill (especially ones that I keep sleeping on, but it could be abstract, like studying a topic for fun), and make time to read books.

My laptop keyboard smells like Grape Barbican bruh

Until next time.

Broadcast #6 - December 25th, 2022

Albums of the Week: Luv(sic) Hexalogy by Nujabes (feat. Shing02), Oshare TV by Oshare TV, and In Utero by Nirvana.

Merry Christmas to those who celebrate.

I actually didn't prepare something for the 24th's blog entry. This is the second entry done a day later. I could technically lie about the date but nope. Besides, it's only 12 am, so the 25th has just started. It's the 24th until I wake up "tomorrow". I've been relistening to music this week (the other day, I relistened to Pink Moon and The Power and the Glory).

Today's topic: are you in terms with your inevitable death?

I've been chilling these days. I started drawing again. Today, I booted up my old laptop to move some project files and audio samples to this computer, to remake some of those old projects. Most of them were my usual mediocre attempts or failed trials, but one project actually impressed me. I rememeber making it, but I don't remember it being that good. I will add some of those projects to the music page soon.

I also finished learning Day is Done by Nick Drake. Some more practice to go and I'd be "done for real."

Albums and songs were picked hastily. Here's the reasoning behind them: the first I was introduced to today, so it fits the theme of the blog; the second is also newly discovered, though I already knew the band; the last is from one of my all-time favourite composers. I have some of its sheets printed. I should probably get to learning those. As for albums, one, like I said, I was introduced to by a friend, one recently discovered, and one being an all-time favourite. The pattern was unintentional. In fact, I just noticed it.

Until next time.

Broadcast #5 - December 17th, 2022

Albums of the Week: Crimson Jazz Trio by Crimson Jazz Trio, Calculating Infinity by The Dillinger Escape Plan, and Almonaiü by Murumart.

My holiday starts today. Hell yeah. My plans were: play Disco Elysium, record some music, etc (spontaneous things), but now I just want to sleep.

Alright. Crimson Jazz Trio comes in two volumes. I listened to the first and loved it. It's a smooth rendition with impressive drumming, and the drummer happens to be King Crimson's former one. Calculating Infinity is a mathcore/metalcore album with a strong start. It's pretty solid throughout, but I got jumpscared twice by the sudden stops and blasting beginnings of next songs, but that's a compliment. I loved it. It's one of my favourite genres. Lastly, we have an album by a friend of mine. You can find it here. It's an interesting ambient electronic work with quite the variety while still maintaining the artist's signature sound, a sort of flavour in the drums, for example. I loved the melodic work; it was lovely. A nice album all around!

Today's topic: do you?

No topic today, but I would like to announce that I started releasing some sketch songs here for the fun of it while working on cleaner tracks. Despite the fun I have with ambient electronic when I use a DAW, it is not the genre that you should expect from me in serious work, so let's hope I succeed in those ambitions. Oh yeah. I also revived my channel. I used to use it to stream an Omori gameplay (unlisted, don't bother), but I started uploading some rare music. I was lucky to get them. The other unlisted videos are two Omori snippets (moonwalking and the Earth fight) and a Windows MIDI that I plugged fresh instruments to. I don't think I'll publicise it but it's here.

Right now, I am waiting to get a CD rip of an album from somebody. They were kind enough to help. I am also considering digitizing the cassettes that I own, for myself mostly, but I might upload something. For that to happen, I will have to get a tape deck (our old cassette player was nerfed years ago and the only other one is the car one).

Until next time.

Broadcast #4 - December 10, 2022

Albums of the Week: The Girl from Ipanema - The Bossa Nova Years by Stan Getz, Playing Piano for Dad by h hunt, and Strings Go Pop/Brass and String Bag by Don Harper.

Playing Piano for Dad by h hunt is what it says on the lid. The intimate clicks of the jazzy chords invite you to listen to a warm piano session.

It was lovely, to say the least. The rawness of the clicks, human commentary, breathing, and ambience is what makes this album special.

As for Strings Go Pop/Brass and String Bag, not much needs to be said besides the fact that it's a smooth and beautiful work, and that Danger Mouse fans will love it, as it was sampled in The Mouse and the Mask. It's a flawless album for sure.

Today's topic: loved ones.

The ultimate purpose of learning an instrument is to perform. I play the piano. I wish I could play for my family. In the past, I vehemently refused to, because playing for an audience was difficult for me. Vehemently? More like anxiously. I didn't have a conviction against performing, as I couldn't get myself to play no matter how much I wanted to. Now, the nervousness of performing is combined with excitement. I find myself wanting to do it, so it is less daunting now, hypothetically. We'll see how nervous I get when I try. That is, when I get the opportunity to play for someone, whether it's guitar or piano.

I originally linked to a textfile titled "composition talk" about my experience as a pianist, but I decided to scrap that.

I think a lot about the winter break. I always overload myself with "do this" and "do that" and I end up doing one or two things max instead. I'll keep them general like I did last summer. Besides recording demos for myself and my friends, I want to learn new things on piano. Two years ago, my mother wanted me to learn Fur Elise. I wanted to do it for her birthday, but I never did, because I never finished learning it. I still have the sheet music. I've been avoiding overplayed pieces over the years and learning different ones that provide the same value in terms of which skills they help improve, because liking a piece motivates me to learn it, but I want to learn Fur Elise for her. Only after I do that will I return to the pieces I was learning for myself. The only part I ever learned of Fur Elise is the part that everyone knows, haha.

There is one more album that I will write about. This was suggested to me by a friend; today's post is about A Crow Looked at Me by Mount Eerie.

Warning for talk about death of loved ones.

The album is in a diary form, and is about the singer's grief over his late wife, who died to pancreatic cancer. I will try and approach the matter appropriately, because journals, diaries, or any deeply intimate work, whether in written or music form, aren't works to be "rated" or judged for quality.

The first song alone hurt to hear:

"A week after you died, a package with your name on it came
And inside was a gift for our daughter you had ordered in secret,
and collapsed there on the front steps I wailed
A backpack for when she goes to school a couple years from now
You were thinking ahead to a future you must have known deep down would not include you,
though you clawed at the cliff you were sliding down,
being swallowed into a silence that's bottomless and real"

It goes without saying that grief is a complicated thing to process, irrespective of how long it's been since the death. It can be confusing and devastating, or maybe you don't know how to feel. Reading or hearing anything involving the death of a family member or a friend, be it real or fictional, was hard for the first time after I've dealt with my own grief. It did not affect me before that. Even though I've processed my grief, it only made me afraid of losing more people, but that is inevitable. For the next few songs, I did not think about myself. (I will not go into detail about my experience in this post in order to respect the composer.) I listened to the singer's story until it was done. The vivid, raw lyrics did not shy away from getting the pain across clearly, particularly the need to go on with your life, even though you're frozen, still in disbelief.

The instrumentals are beautiful, huddling you. The album is not an easy listen if you're attentive and absorbing the reality behind it.

There is no more to be said over what Mount Eerie said already. The lyrics are painfully honest and direct. The story and feelings are detailed. It takes strength to compose, sing and publish an album like this one. Regardless, it is art, and art can handle the hardest emotions.

Until next time.

Broadcast #3 - December 4th, 2022

Albums of the week: Titanic Rising by Weyes Blood and Close to the Edge by Yes.

As promised, here's the list of albums that I listened to over the last three weeks of November.

Today's topic: at what point in your life was there a turning point?

Until next time.

Broadcast #2 - Nov 27, 2022

Albums of the Week: Five Leaves Left by Nick Drake and The Dark Side of the Moon by Pink Floyd.

I listened to 32 albums over the past two weeks, or more if you count full re-listens during that period. There is also music from outside the full-album-listening, so in total, that is probably too much music for the average person with responsibilities. To be fair, most of the listening was done while doing other, more important things.

I loved every one of those albums, but ones that stand out to me made it to the "Album of the Week" notes of both broadcasts. I have written about them in detail here.

Today's topic: what is something that you could do right now—right where you are—to make your life better?

I would drop everything and begin recording music. Hopes for next week: I will work as hard as I can to pass this semester.

Until next time.

Broadcast #1 - Nov 21, 2022

Albums of the Week: The Power and the Glory by Gentle Giant and Quiet World by Native Construct.

Welcome, listener! Or rather, "reader". It is November 21st of 2022, and the radio shall begin regular broadcasting. Although it was started on a Monday, this page will be updated every Saturday.

Today's topic: what is the last greatest song or album that you listened to?

I listened to a large number of albums over the past week, and Quiet World by Native Construct blew me away. Beautiful album.

Hopes for next week: I'm deeply thinking about whether I should change my major. It's difficult, but I will sort it out when the time comes.

Until next time.




Ocean is inspired by Seashore from Schlaugh.

inserted by FC2 system