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FAO Blue: in defence of Sci-Clone's "El Son"

#1
ok then, i'm going to try and explain why everything you said about the sci-clone tune was total bollocks...

1) to say straight off that the chords are wrong is so not to get it. the chords are perfect and that they're harmonically wrong is what drives the whole piece. it's a circular pattern and because the ear wants them to resolve – and they don't – creates a tension that takes the tune out of being mere lounge. this applies to every solo part too – they'd be twee if they resolved ... but they don't. blame uses the same trick with his circular non-resolving basslines; it means his music keeps firing while most other good looking stuff (of the past 5-6 years) is pretty banal. [i was going to mention 16th/17th century ground bass as well, but that's not really the same since there repetition is used to create structure rather than tension.]

2) to quibble about the production is again so not getting it. the feel they're aiming for is – not exactly improvised – more that of a band going into a cheap studio and laying it down in one take... ok, ready, let's do it. to compare it with j majik (because it's got a sax sample Roll ) – where the production is everything (and amazing) – is totally meaningless. you tweak the sci-clone production and basically you blow it. it's like the senegalese stuff we were listening to earlier – recorded nicely in england it loses something essential.

3) to complain that it's not quite in tune – that's so irrelevant i hadn't even noticed. as with the production, you mess with this and you lose something. well actually, my sister – another musician (with perfect pitch) – would probably agree with you here, but some stuff i like more because it's not in tune – similar song-based material which almost always should be in tune i like because it isn't. such as... "any spare change" by jessica & martin simpson – jessica has an appalling voice, weak, thin, barely able to hold a note – and martin can only have done a record with her because she's his wife – but on this one track (which is about someone on the street begging for change) it works beautifully. or alison statton in young marble giants – that she's not always in tune gives the music (the rest being just bass + organ/guitar) a sweet naïvety. similarly tracey thorn's first album, a distant shore, which is as ropey as can be, works better because of that. record this stuff properly and you might as well throw it away.

4) to dismiss nathan haines' solo as rock sax, to say it's not real jazz – of course that's right, it's not jazz, it wasn't intended to be jazz. nor is it attempting to be dnb with jazzy flavas Roll. it's more – for want of a precise genre – lounge rock. except that the harmonic tension and the fast dnb tempo keeps it from being late night radio 2 easy listening wallpaper music. instead it rolls on and on from one improbably pleasant tune to the next without losing momentum. [and to go "dah dah dah" on a dnb compilation of noisy stuff – i love that – in that context it's a great big happy smiley eat me Wave to everyone else.]

5) the modulation in the middle is not a lame attempt to change mood. well ok, i'd agree that the modulation doesn't quite work, but it's alright because it soon remodulates – which was the point of the initial modulation: to change the harmonic pattern briefly before moving back, to prevent it becoming so familiar and acceptable to the ear that it loses its effect.

i can't think of anything else at present. except...

from kingsley's review of deadly chambers of sound:

"north london's finest notch up another album of the month, with their ten-year anniversary r sound celebrations culminating in a compilation of exclusives from the very best producers within the movement. the label's continuing philosophy is that of futurism, made clear through the steady mutations of hidden agenda's 'redress' and the seething atmospheres of 'neutrons' from colin lindo's alpha omega project. highlight of the album, however, comes from sci-clone who buck the trends again with the enjoyable switched tempo 'el son'."

good old kingsley. Grin
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#2
Icon_eek Icon_eek
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#3
still sucks tho.........

its out of tune

the "circular" harmony ( Hahaha ) is balls and is going round in a boring predicatble mash.

it is rock sax, Kenny G would find himself at home on said record!!

its just cafe lounge jazzy dnb in its worst form!!

so there...

infact let me go and throw the record against the wall again!!
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#4
jesus..

and i thought i was good at quantifying.
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#5
Blue Wrote:still sucks tho.........

you know nothing and I'm fucking sending the boys round

[Image: bigchop.gif] [Image: bigchop.gif] [Image: bigchop.gif]
[Image: 2guntruck.gif]
[Image: bomber.gif]
[Image: launcher.gif] [Image: launcher.gif]
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#6
sore ass!!

loser!!

Hahaha
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#7
blue Wrote:sore ass!!

loser!!

Hahaha

think i'll gonna hang out at vn with my main man kingsley – someone who knows what's what Yes Yes
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#8
statto Wrote:think i'll gonna hang out at vn with my main man kingsley — someone who knows what's what Yes Yes

p off then Twisted
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#9
i like el son Scatter
Lisasax
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#10
littlenemo Wrote:i like el son Scatter
Lisasax

yey!! Grin
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#11
Statto!!! Bad Boy! Hahahaaa I like yr style, o Angel Of Vengence!!! Sock it to 'em!


Can't say as I'm into that track myself, but your post reminded me of a short interview with Jack Smooth of Basement Records in Melody Maker from some years ago. I cut it out and kept it (somewhere!) as a reminder of one thing that was starting to go wrong with Jungle at the time (late 95/ early 96) - Smooth was bangin on about the more 'musical' stuff and about how it was time for d+b producers to get properly musical - stop using the 'wrong' bass notes etc. etc.... Even then I remember thinking: this guy represents something that we should be wary of - maybe much the same impulse that had Foul Play talking about using orchestras, or had Goldie eventually trying his hand (although totally out of his league) at concept pieces like 'Mother', Sven Vath-style.

People don't often talk about samples and what the reliance / non-reliance on them means to this music, but I think they should cos it's very very important! The post-modern sampledielia of hardcore and (to a lesser extent) Jungle has been seriously neglected by a generation of producers who took it on unquestioningly but who then ditched it (when they got all self-conscious about being 'musicians') as a source of shame. And yet many of this music's absolute finest moments have all been about the creative way that samples from other musics were employed.. and many of them off-key or 'wrong'! I'm thinking Goldie in particular or even 94 Dillinja and hi weirdo pitched string chords - gets the hairs on the back of my neck going, but would a trained musician interject on a point of order there, and inform me that I shouldn't be reacting so cos the notes are off-key? Maybe, but what I'm saying is: if it works, who gives a fuck?!?!?

I also remember Wagon Christ talking about how getting samples bang in pitch AND in key was nearly always impossible, and so they often ended up gnawing at one another in a kind of disturbing way. Samples can create their own freaky world, where traditional musicanship doesn'tr eally have to figure to the same extent - hence the liberating aspect of working with them.

Thoughts?
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#12
Jeeeeesus!!!! I cannot believe the praise that has been offered for this pitiable attempt of music writing! Wash your ears out please! It's only purpose is to appease one's sense of humour, surely?

Boring, simple, artless, souless.

Yawn.....
Get Zen
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#13
aurora Wrote:jeeeeesus!!!! i cannot believe the praise that has been offered for this pitiable attempt of music writing! wash your ears out please! it's only purpose is to appease one's sense of humour, surely?

Abuse Abuse Abuse

aurora Wrote:simple, artless

Yes Yes Yes

aurora Wrote:boring, souless.

No No No

aurora Wrote:yawn.....

Nono
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#14
hahahahahahahah
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#15
Aurora Wrote:Jeeeeesus!!!! I cannot believe the praise that has been offered for this pitiable attempt of music writing! Wash your ears out please! It's only purpose is to appease one's sense of humour, surely?

Boring, simple, artless, souless.

Yawn.....

I agree massively
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#16
naphta Wrote:statto!!! bad boy! hahahaaa i like yr style, o angel of vengence!!! sock it to 'em!


can't say as i'm into that track myself, but your post reminded me of a short interview with jack smooth of basement records in melody maker from some years ago. i cut it out and kept it (somewhere!) as a reminder of one thing that was starting to go wrong with jungle at the time (late 95/ early 96) - smooth was bangin on about the more 'musical' stuff and about how it was time for d+b producers to get properly musical - stop using the 'wrong' bass notes etc. etc.... even then i remember thinking: this guy represents something that we should be wary of - maybe much the same impulse that had foul play talking about using orchestras, or had goldie eventually trying his hand (although totally out of his league) at concept pieces like 'mother', sven vath-style.

people don't often talk about samples and what the reliance / non-reliance on them means to this music, but i think they should cos it's very very important! the post-modern sampledielia of hardcore and (to a lesser extent) jungle has been seriously neglected by a generation of producers who took it on unquestioningly but who then ditched it (when they got all self-conscious about being 'musicians') as a source of shame. and yet many of this music's absolute finest moments have all been about the creative way that samples from other musics were employed.. and many of them off-key or 'wrong'! i'm thinking goldie in particular or even 94 dillinja and hi weirdo pitched string chords - gets the hairs on the back of my neck going, but would a trained musician interject on a point of order there, and inform me that i shouldn't be reacting so cos the notes are off-key? maybe, but what i'm saying is: if it works, who gives a fuck?!?!?

i also remember wagon christ talking about how getting samples bang in pitch and in key was nearly always impossible, and so they often ended up gnawing at one another in a kind of disturbing way. samples can create their own freaky world, where traditional musicanship doesn'tr eally have to figure to the same extent - hence the liberating aspect of working with them.

thoughts?

Xyxthumbs
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#17
Aurora Wrote:Jeeeeesus!!!! I cannot believe the praise that has been offered for this pitiable attempt of music writing! Wash your ears out please! It's only purpose is to appease one's sense of humour, surely?

Boring, simple, artless, souless.

Yawn.....


Me - I wasn't actually praising it at all! I was just trying to get some discussion going. But never mind that, let's just rinse some DOA icons instead!!!
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#18
Naphta Wrote:Me - I wasn't actually praising it at all! I was just trying to get some discussion going. But never mind that, let's just rinse some DOA icons instead!!!

Indeed... I wasn't sure whether you were criticising Blue for wanting everything in tune or me for liking the live sax.

But your post reminds me of something... Simon Reynolds' Energy Flash where he talks about The Fusion Con. Have you read that?
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#19
tuning and keymatching samples is a hard and unrewarding task, but anyone who tries to tell you that it can't be done is just fucking lazy.

p.s. [Image: TimeFactory.jpg]
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#20
Naphta Wrote:The post-modern sampledielia of hardcore and (to a lesser extent) Jungle has been seriously neglected by a generation of producers who took it on unquestioningly but who then ditched it (when they got all self-conscious about being 'musicians') as a source of shame.

I don't have the impression that it's mainly about being a serious musician. That was certainly the case with 4Hero and Goldie, but the majority didn't exchange the sampler for an orchestra and symphonic compositions but for a cleaner synthetic sound. I blame this more on the increased focus on technology and "production values".

Quote:And yet many of this music's absolute finest moments have all been about the creative way that samples from other musics were employed.. and many of them off-key or 'wrong'!

I agree with you here, often it's the unorthodox and weird that creates a certain edginess and charm that make a piece stand out, not only with sampling but with every instrument, technique or style (remember Punk ?Wink). But there's always a "good wrong" and a "bad wrong". While dissonance and off-key sounds can be great, they can also sound really bad, not only to the classical trained ear (which I don't have). So I think a little bit serious musician can't hurt, you just have to know when to let things happen.
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#21
littleNemo Wrote:While dissonance and off-key sounds can be great, they can also sound really bad, not only to the classical trained ear (which I don't have). So I think a little bit serious musician can't hurt, you just have to know when to let things happen.

Absolutely!
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#22
Statto Wrote:Indeed... I wasn't sure whether you were criticising Blue for wanting everything in tune or me for liking the live sax.

Both of yez! Harharhar!!!!

Quote:But your post reminds me of something... Simon Reynolds' Energy Flash where he talks about The Fusion Con. Have you read that?

Have I read Simon Reynolds?

Did I first hear of Omni Trio and Rufige Cru through Simon Reynolds back in in 1993? Did he confirm just about every goddamn thing I'd ever thought myself about Jungle/d+b or indeed ever written about the subject myself? Is 'Energy Flash' my bible? Does the Pope shit in the woods? Does Statto like lists?

Yeh git me?!?
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#23
just make it sound good, who cares how you get there
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#24
scart ridge Wrote:just make it sound good, who cares how you get there

aye
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#25
Blue Wrote:
scart ridge Wrote:just make it sound good, who cares how you get there

aye


Ahh, so - end of debate!

Perhaps we should conclude with that old chestnut: 'there's only 2 types of music....'?
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