Wednesday, June 25, 2008

Let it flow

Hey everyone! So after weeks of hearing my girlfriend Junia say "Dude 2 mixes a week is too much" and weeks of me saying "Junia! NO!"- I've finally accepted her advice and will now only be posting one 8-Trck Engineer episode per week. That way those of you who actually listen to it at work or while you do your dishes or read through your Google reader blog subscriptions or where ever you may be when you listen to these mixes- you can take your time with them and really soak the music in!

Tuesday, June 24, 2008


I've changed all the past 8-Trck ep's to MediaMaster's radio because FileFactory isn't working out very well for me. It's a temporary upload service like rapidshare and megaupload which means that after a few weeks songs start to disappear! After a bit of searching I found Media Master which is an actual music storage service built so you can store your music and listen to it anywhere from any computer. So far it seems to be a pretty solid service. You can even upload your playlist from itunes directly! pretty nice uh?

here's the recap.
8-Trck Engineer ep 03 My Swedish Sigh
ep 04 The Human Inspired
ep 05 The Coming Of Age
ep 06 Donde Esta Chula Juana?
ep 07 The New Radio
ep 08 SummerSundaySleep

you can link to any of these on the archive list to the right.

Monday, June 23, 2008

8-Trck(x2.5) Engineer Ep.08, SummerSundaySleep

I couldn't contain this episode of 8-Trck to 8 tracks. I had to multiple it by 2.5 and I have the number needed for this playlist to be the most enjoyable and also have the most impact.
Wired|Listening Post posted about an article in the Times titled :"Does Music Have the Power to Send Us to Sleep?: A recent experiment in Japan tested the power of music to send us into a deep slumber."
I absolutely love reading about Music and it's neurological power. The experiment took place in Japan where Dr Takuro Endo filled 1,500 people into a theatre. He then seduced them for three hours of carefully chosen music ranging from Chopin and Tchaikovsky to folk singer Mary Hopkins and Japanese tenor Masafumi Akikawa. I would have loved to be in that audience!
I took a Classical appreciation class in college and remember sometimes it was like a battle for my life to stay awake. I would have been an experience to sit among 1500 other people and collectively fall asleep.

After reading both the blog post and the Times article about Dr Takuro Endo and his experiment with music and sleep, I took up Wired's challenge and created my best 8-Trck Engineer episode yet. Except it's 20 tracks of pure mellow bliss for your summertime sunday nap needs! I hope you press play and open a new window and read those articles. It's great stuff. After reading go lay down and take a nap.

8-Trck Engineer Ep. 08, SummerSundaySleep

I know I could have gone all Brian Eno and Fennesz on you guys but I tried to keep this away from just another slumber inducing ambient mix. Hope you liked it

Trck list:
1. Lullatone - Bedroom Bossa Band (frm 2006: Plays Pajama Pop Pour Vous)
2. This Is A Process Of A Still Life - Constantly Under Surveillance (frm 2005: Light)
3. Bibio - Maroon Lagoon (2006: Hand Cranked)
4. Casino Versus Japan - Marilyn Set Me Free (2004: Hitori + Kaiso)
5. Daedelus - Quiet Now (2002: Invention)
6. Boom Bip - Last Walk Around Mirror Lake, Boards of Canada remix (2004: Corymb)
7. Guitar - Red & White (2006: Tokyo)
8. Epic45 - The Stars In Autumn (2007: May Your Heart Be the Map)
9. Tycho - Send and Receive (2006: Past is Prologue)
10. The Cinematic Orchestra - Everyday (2002: Everyday)
11. Balmorhea - Greyish Tapering Ash (2008 Rivers Arms)
12. Denzel & Huhn - New Kerwe (2007: Paraport)
13. Phonem - Currents (220V Offshore) (2000: Hydroelectric)
14. El Perro Del Mar - Inner Island (2008: From The Vallery to The Stars)
15. F.S. Blumm - Lilli (2006: Summer Kling)
16. Vincent Gallo - I Wrote This Song for the Girl Paris Hilton (2001: When)
17. M83 - Sister (part 2) (2007: Digital Shades Vol. 1)
18. Library Tapes - Skiss Av Trad (2007: Hostluft)
19. Eluvium - Indoor Swimming At The Space Station (2007: Copia)
20. Stars Of The Lid - That Finger On Your Temple if the Barrel of My Raygun (2007: And Their Refinement of the Decline)

Sunday, June 22, 2008

Super Crew

Alrightalrightalright.. I'm in no way some advocate or pusher of MTV or Randy Jackson. But if you grew up hip hop in any way, watched early or recent B-Boy movies, or at least even appreciate dancing, you need to watch ABDC. If MTV ever had ONE reason in the last 10 years to watch it, America's Best Dance Crew is the reason. 

Super Crew is the reason I'm breaking my nerd silence of science and music blogging. Just watch this performance and tell me you didn't say "alright that was fuckin rad."

Friday, June 20, 2008

Win some Lose some

Aniboom announced the 3 "Golden Ticket" winners for the Radiohead video competition. I'm disappointed mine wasn't a winner but I'm not surprised at all. I made my video knowing not much would happen with it. Check out the semi-finalists and golden ticket winners here. I'd say there is maybe 2 worth a Radiohead tag. I seriously don't know how some of those pieces were chosen over hundreds of better videos. When you check out the forums there is only 1 out of 25 comments that are positive about the whole contest.

The one other Radiohead contest for In Rainbows turned out to be sort of a joke towards the fans. I'm talking about the Nude Remix contest. Thom said in an interview with NPR: "This was quite a difficult task for everybody that entered, as Nude is in 6/8 timing, and 63bpm. Most music that's played in clubs is around 120bpm and usually 4/4 timing. It's pretty difficult to seamlessly mix a waltz beat into a DJ set. This resulted in lots of generic entries consisting of a typical 4/4 beat, but with arbitrary clips from "Nude" thrown in so that they qualified for the contest. Thom Yorke joked at the ridiculousness of it in an interview for NPR radio, hinting that they set the competition to find out how people would approach such a challenging task."

Let's see what happens with the Aniboom video contest.
click below to check it out.

8-Trck Engineer Ep.07, The New Radio

With the past few 8-Trck's I've been constructing the mix in response to some kind of current event. 

This 8-Trck episode doesn't have a theme though. 
Well... I guess it does. The theme is great new music you need to check out. This is all music that's been released in the past few months that's been on heavy heavy rotation in my auditory life.
There should be something for everyone in this episode because no matter what side of the planet your on, there is music being released that will speak to you. Sometimes you just have to wade through the boring-but-strong current of life to find those special things that excite you. Here's to the new radio; press play and walk away.

1. No Age, Cappo - Nouns
2. This Is Ivy League, London Bridges - This is Ivy League
3. Fleet Foxes, Blue Ridge Mountains - s/t
4. Animal Collective, Street Flash - Water Curses Ep
5. Jamie Lidell, Green Light - Jim
6. The Kills, Last Day of Magic - Midnight Boom
7. Cut Copy, Strangers In The Wind - In Ghost Colours
8. The Black Ghosts, Repetition Kills You (ft. Damon Albarn) - s/t

Tuesday, June 17, 2008

The Challenge

I've entered the 2nd design contest. This time it's for Holiday photo cards for newly weds. If you've come across this post, help me and my friends start our business (more on this soon) with that prize money! Just register with your email and name (they won't sell your email so don't worry) and just find my designs and vote! (vote here)

White on White on You and MeHoliday CuteCubeModern TilesThe Always Holiday Spirit

Friday, June 13, 2008

8-Trck Engineer Ep.06, Donde Esta ChulaJuana?

Junia and I are flying down to Chula Vista to visit our families for the weekend. I was going to finally post some new indie stuff, but I think I'll save that for when I get back. I've got the urge to get a little Nortechno on your ass.

This is an 8-trck Nortec and Nortec affiliated mix.
This should make my one-hour plane ride pretty smooth.
To those of you who stumble across this, Enjoy.

Monday, June 9, 2008

My feet will experience Unknown Pleasures.

Well. probably not. I'd put these up on my wall before I walked on those beautiful inserts with my sweaty feet. I ran into these on the Wired blogs. Turns out this is a custom pair on display at Ran in Manchester. But godamn would I like a pair of these bad-larry's. 




Sunday, June 8, 2008

8-Trck Engineer Ep.05, The Coming of Age

I've created this 8-Trck Engineer as if I was creating the soundtrack of my float and fly through space. Past stars and planets, through gas clouds and planet rings. This is dedicated to the progress we Humans are making in becoming a Space-faring species. Press play then read. Then if you love space honk your horn...or just leave a comment

8-Trck Engineer, ep 05: The Coming of Age
download the mix here.
if you have any questions about any of the music, leave a comment and I'll comment back!

There's this great sense of wonder going on with all the action between Humans and Space. There's always been action, I bet, but not in the mainstream media. First there's the new Phoenix Space probe and it's Mars landing. Then there's the new amazing(!) NASA Spitzer Space Telescope galaxy panorama. And as I type this, I'm watching Discovery Channel's "When We Left Earth" series. 

If you were one of those neo-nature geeks that was glued to Discovery Channel every Sunday for "Planet Earth" then your probably one of these neo-space lovers excited about this new series. from NASA: When We Left Earth is the story of mankind’s greatest adventure, leaving the earth and living in space. For the first time this series has digitally re-mastered the original film and audio recordings from NASA’s vault, including and all the key on-board footage filmed by the astronauts themselves. For DC's series trailer click here.
If you haven't seen NASA's Spitzer's pics then eventually you will. "This is the highest-resolution, largest, most sensitive infrared picture ever taken of our Milky Way," said Sean Carey of NASA's Spitzer Science Center. From Because Earth sits inside our dusty, flat, disk-shaped Milky Way, we have an edge-on view of our galactic home. We see the Milky Way as a blurry, narrow band of light that stretches almost completely across the sky. With Spitzer's dust-piercing infrared eyes, astronomers peered 60,000 light-years away into this fuzzy band, called the galactic plane, and saw all the way to the other side of the galaxy.

Wednesday, June 4, 2008

White Glove Tracking

I've started checking out and have come across this.

On May 4th, 2007, we asked internet users to help isolate Michael Jackson's white glove in all 10,060 frames of his nationally televised landmark performance of Billy Jean. 72 hours later 125,000 gloves had been located. wgt_data_v1.txt (listed below) is the culmination of data collected. It is released here for all to download and use as an input into any digital system. Just as the data was gathered collectively it is our hope that it will be visualized collectively. Please email links to your apps, video, source code, and/or screen shots to evan[at]eyebeam[dot]org. Work will be exhibited in an online gallery and depending on popularity and interest potentially in a forthcoming physical gallery exhibition as well. Huge thanks to everyone that contributed to the data collection.

There's some very cool techniques used in there. My favorites are Tim Knapen's Giant Glove, and Jung-Hoon Seo's Slinky. 

Tuesday, June 3, 2008

This is getting crazy...(in a good way)

There a quite a few "artists for Obama" groups coming up. Upperplayground and FIFTY24SF have their crew of dope artists. This Abe Obama...or Barack O-Lincoln, is scary! Ron English will probably be painting controversial pieces like this till he dies. I'm surprised McDonald's hasn't already had him assassinated. I'm looking forward to a Sam Flores "Obama" piece!

Also, my main man ISO50 (check out Tycho's music down in the "The Human Inspired" mix down below.)has done an amazing piece for Obama. ISO50's poster is awesome because it's totally inspired by Aaron Douglass' work during the Harlem Renaissance in the 1930's. Douglas's paintings combine very strong graphical imagery with really nice color palettes- but at the same time were always very strong in controversial racial themes.

Our Videotape

FINISHED! Alright everyone. Remember weeks ago when I posted a Radiohead video submitted to the Aniboom Radiohead video competition? I said it inspired me to make my own. Well I did and here it finally is. 

This is my submission for a "Golden Ticket" in the video contest. It's not animated yet, but the point of winning the contest is to get $10,000 to finish the video. I would collaborate with someone who could rotoscope this video in grayscale. Don't get me wrong, I like it now, but I don't think I'll feel satisfied till I see it in rotoscope. If your not sure what "rotoscope" is, check this out. If you've ever seen Waking Life or A Scanner Darkly, then you've seen it before.

Please go to Aniboom and rate the video! It would help me out! and please comment here to let me know what you think. I love criticism.

Watch more cool animation and creative cartoons at aniBoom

Sunday, June 1, 2008

8-Trck Engineer Ep.04, The Human Inspired

OK so here’s my two part answer to the question "What does it mean to be human?" discussed in the previous post.

A. What we are is the brain. The simplest, yet most complex, answer is that to be human is to have what we all have in common, our brain. Everything we think we are, see we are, feel we are or hear we are, is all coming from one place. Don’t mistake that for an idea that our senses make us human; it’s what’s piecing it all together. We could have purple skin, guys could have vaginas, girls could have penises, and our eyes could be attached to tube-like membranes sticking out from our necks… But we would still call ourselves humans so long as that’s the way we always were. Only humans can experience abstract external stimuli as (emotional, creative, physical) inspiration.

B. 8-Trck Engineer ep. 04, The Human Inspired

There are countless ways to answer this question using this format, but I wanted to keep this at a level of “I’d-like-to-play-you-some-music-you-haven’t-heard-yet. So don’t ask in some Spiccoli voice “Hey bud, where’s Beethoven? Where’s Led Zeppelin and Pink Floyd?” Yada yada yada. I’ve answered this question this way in the hopes that any person can come along and listen, enjoy, then think about making their own mix. “What is it to be human?” is practically a rhetorical question. It has no answer other than what you feel is the answer.

This is a collection of 8 songs- put together spontaneously and without too much thought other than I know each one of these songs reminds me of what I am in this existence. It’s 8-Trck Engineer episode 04.

Pedal, Sump, Pedal, 2008, Staubgold Records. This piano duo from Sydney just released this album of improvised piano awesomeness. Some of the tracks are brilliantly unnerving, and some are just brilliantly moving like Sump. Staubgold says this: “What are they thinking? These guys are doing a record of acoustic piano music in this day and age! And let me tell you something, my prejudice was totally crushed within the first minute of listening to this CD. Just when I was thinking two grand pianos, four hands have nothing to say in this 21st century...”

The Radio Dept., What Will Give?, Pet Grief, 2006, Labrador. I have a feeling The Radio Dept is going to move me just as much when I’m 85-years-old. This is timeless timeless timeless music for us emotional pop lovers. They’re just friends school friends from Sweden that create wonderful music only Humans can create.

Tycho, Past Is Prologue, Past Is Prologue, 2006, Merck. Tycho, aka graphic designer ISO50, aka Scott Hansen, is from San Francisco! What!what! This guy is amazing. His beats are bliss and his design is dope. This song just KILLS me. I don’t know why, but it does. He needs to play more sets here in SF, that’s all I need to say. Bring back Beats and Boardgames!

M83, Teen Angst, Before The Dawn Heals Us, 2005, EMI France. I could have chosen any M83 song and it would have fit well in this mix. M83 has an extremely unique sound that has this quality about it that really makes you feel human. I feel like M83 is emotion in music form. It’s raw, LOUD, chaotic and intense but beautiful, balanced, and calming. One of my all-time favorite bands.

Tristeza, Balabaristas, A Colores, 2005, Better Looking. Another all time favs. The Album Leaf and Tristeza both hold special places in my heart. You can hear every stroke and touch of their fingers playing. Tristeza’s guitar and bass are almost unmatched by anyone in this genre. They tried playing with a stand in guitar player last tour and he couldn’t hang. It would hard to hear their live set being messed up, but at the same time it reinforced the complexity and strenuous rhythms they use.

Epic45, England Fallen Over, England Fallen Over EP, 2005, Make Mine Music. A highly inspirational band for me. If you like this song, just seriously by everything Epic45 has done. It’s really all that good. Hopefully your listening to this mix with headphones or good speakers cause this track uses GREAT channel techniques. I LOVE this band.

Radiohead, Weird Fishes/Apreggi, In Rainbows, 2007, self released. Another all-time fav for me. Shouldn’t have to say much about this song or band other than Brilliant.

DJ Shadow, Blood On The Motorway, The Private Press, 2002, MCA. I know I know. This song is a little old. But I BET you forgot about it. I BET you forgot how amazing it is. Well Junia (my girlfriend, Tonteria) DIDN’T! Honestly I forgot this song within the depths of my hard drive, but she called it out. If only Shadow could go back to this! He gave us a little taste with the live set release he did with Cut Chemist.

"What does it mean to be human?" is covering cool parts and discussions of the World Science Festival in NY.
On Saturday night a panel of physicists, anthropologists, and any other –ist profession in the field of science came together to form a panel to discuss the question “What does it mean to be humn?” 
Below is Wired’s post:
“A star-studded panel of scientists gathered to discuss those heady themes last night at the World Science Festival in New York City. Here are their answers in convenient nutshell form:
Marvin Minsky, artificial intelligence pioneer: We do something other species can't: We remember. We have cultures, ways of transmitting information.

Daniel Dannett, cognitive scientist: We are the first species that represents our reasons, and can reason with each other. "The planet has grown a nervous system," he said.

Renee Reijo Pera, embryologist: We're uniquely human from the moment that egg and sperm fuse. A "human program" begins before the brain even begins to form.

Patricia Churchland, neuroethicist: The structure of how the human brain is arranged intrigues me. Are there unique brain structures? As far as we can understand, it's our size that is unique. What we don't find are other unique structures. There may be certain types of human-specific cells -- but as for what that means, we don't know. It's important not only to focus on us, to compare our biology and behavior to other animals.

Jim Gates, physicist: We are blessed with the ability to know our mother. We are conscious of more than our selves. And just as a child sees a mother, the species' vision clears and sees mother universe. We are getting glimmers of how we are related to space and time. We can ask, what am I? What is this place? And how am I related to it?

Nikolas Rose, sociologist: Language and representation. We are the kind of creatures that ask those questions of ourselves. And we believe science can help answer. We've become creatures that think of ourselves as essentially biological -- and I think we're more than biological creatures. I'm not sure biology has answers.

Ian Tattersall, anthropologist: It's not "what is human," but what is unique: our extraordinary form of symbolic cognition. 

Francis Collins, geneticist: What does the genome tell us? There's surprisingly little genetic difference between human and chimpanzee. Yet clearly we're different. There's brain size and language. A language-related gene, FoxP2, evolved most rapidly in the last few million years. How did we develop empathy? Appreciate our mortality? And we should admit that there are areas that might not submit to material analysis: beauty, inspiration. We shouldn't dismiss these as epiphenomenal froth. 

Harold Varmus, physiologist: Intrigued by our ability to generate hypotheses and make measurements. 

Paul Nurse, cell biologist: Is excited about the ability of science to answer this question. 

Antonio Damasio, neuroscientist: The critical unique factor is language. Creativity. The religious and scientific impulse. And our social organization, which has developed to a prodigious degree. We have a record of history, moral behavior, economics, political and social institutions. We're probably unique in our ability to investigate the future, imagine outcomes, and display images in our minds. I like to think of a generator of diversity in the frontal lobe -- and those initials are G-O-D.