Wednesday, July 1, 2015

Vaporwave sampling

WhoSampled, a great resource.




I've been aware of this genre of music for some time, but had no idea it had a name. It didn't fit into any genre playlists I'd constructed, but the mood fit perfectly with many specific mix sets as bumpers, or transitions from one state to another. Fitting that it would be called 'Vaporwave':

Vaporwave was first characterized by its heavy use of samples from late 70's, '80s, '90s and early 2000's music, typically lounge, smooth jazz or Muzak. Samples are often pitched, layered or altered in classic chopped and screwed style.
The genre emerged in 2011 from online communities [...] Imagery associated with vaporwave includes glitch art, Classical sculpture, '90s web design, outmoded computer renderings and classic cyberpunk aesthetics. 
Use of Japanese characters and other non western writing systems is also prominent. Music writer, Adam Harper of Dummy Mag, describes the genre as "ironic and satirical or truly accelerationist", and that the name "vaporwave" itself is a nod to both vaporware, products that are announced but never actually manufactured or cancelled, and to the idea of [emotional] energy being subjected to relentless sublimation under capitalism. [Wikipedia]

Often, Infinity Frequencies [SoundCloud] tracks feel like I've fallen asleep as a child with the TV on: back when signals were analogue, and subject to distortion. I miss those days. More to be found via Reddit.

Sunday, June 28, 2015

NUMERALS - A collective of artists

It's difficult to describe exactly what the various artists in NUMERALS (Holy Flareheartmath², OLFVN, among others) are, exactly, or who's producing the music from their online presence alone. 

In particular, OLFVN seems like it could be a girl in Japan, given the album art, track listings, and highly curated tumblr - but in a world of interest-based identities, it could easily be a white male living in Nova Scotia. The music mirrors the visual component - a shadow, a black absence of form - it's defined by what it isn't, and the rest is left to the viewer own points of reference to fill in.

Regardless, most of the music of the NUMERALS collective touches on the triangles and triple-clap motifs seen in "witchhouse" music, but has a deeper bass beat, and is generally less Gothic-inspired, and more diverse with the references it draws. Very interesting stuff.