to eleven


Mash-up Monday: Dead Prez vs. Kanye West- “It’s Bigger than Power” by jason
December 12, 2011, 10:20 am
Filed under: Mash Up Monday | Tags: , , , , , ,

KCBeats combined Dead Prez’s “Hip-Hop” and Kanye West’s “Power.” It’s all kinds of rad.

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Gtronic Radio by ymatto
February 22, 2011, 1:37 pm
Filed under: Credibility, hip-hop, Radio | Tags: , ,

Remember netradio? Shortly after ripping your CDs became a thing and dial-up internet was relegated to your grandparents checking their hotmail, netradio was in.  Stations proliferated and they streamed curated, niche playlists for free.  Then legal questions about royalties were posed, hackles were raised, many stations went to paid subscriptions, and people realized that most stations were kind of lame anyway.  Sure, it was better than your eighteen local Clear Channel top40 stations, but it still was one-way thing — not very web2.0.  Pandora, last.fm, Grooveshark, and one thousand other smart streaming services were invented, and the world moved on.  Why listen what somebody else thinks you should hear?

But today I tell the hip-hop lovers (and those open to new love) that you should be listening to what Gtronic Radio (http://www.gtronicradio.com/) wants you to hear.

The thing that the one-way, old school, curated radio format had going for it was that if you got the right curator, it worked.  Growing up in LA, I remember all these late-night radio shows created and hosted by dudes with opinions about what good music meant.  New releases, old classics, and unknown B-sides, they played the good shit.  You were there for an education;  you liked what you heard and you wanted more.  Today technology has given us myriad ways to listen to our own music and to listen to whatever we want.  We’re basically at Star Trek: The Next Generation level of music access.  But it’s like cooking with every ingredient, utensil, and recipe at hand — great, but without some trusted cookbooks to expand your horizons, you’re going to end up just making the same chicken cacciatore over and over.

That’s what Gtronic is about for hip-hop.  If you’ve ever heard someone say “I listen to hip-hop, but it’s not what you hear on the radio — it’s the good stuff”, Gtronic is the best way to hear what they’re talking about.  If you’re already down, you will not believe the depth of the playlist; I’m one of those nerdy white dudes who collects and talks about hip-hop albums like classic jazz, and I’m constantly hearing stuff for the first time or having tracks I’d forgotten about brought back to mind.

This is the sound that makes the head nod, 24/7.  Listen, enjoy, and then donate because I don’t want this netradio station to vanish like the radio shows I grew up on.

– Matt



The music of design. by Jayson
January 19, 2010, 9:06 am
Filed under: Electronic, Mixtape | Tags: , , , , , , , , , ,

Since I nominally do design & commercial art for a job, I also read a lot of design blogs.

Two of the ones I read the most are the ISO50 and Hydro74 blogs.

ISO50 is one of my design heroes, basically everything he does and everything he likes is so solid you could use it to survive in space. He’s carrying the torch of Moderism in this dumb, post-modern age. He’s also a musician himself. He does classic ambient-electronic as Tycho. It reminds me of a more stripped down boards of Canada and is totally worthwhile. He also posts playlists of what he’s currently listening to and posts a lot of downloadable mixes on his main blog.

Hydro74 is more of an illustrator, but he does font design and a lot of design for clothing. He was a big inspiration for me when I was doing the same kind of work. He is the world’s foremost illustrator of skulls in my eyes. His fonts are also hell of good, really great custom typography. Turns out the dude is pretty handy with a mix. He’s just posted one of some of his favorite tracks.

Whether or not you get into these is really going to depend on how down you are with the sounds of electronic, ambient, idm, dubstep, and party remixes. If that is your thing I’d say go immediately and check out some music, if not, I’d say go immediately and check out some art and design.

This is pretty interesting for me, because like a lot of people I’ve thought about making music at points on and off in my life, but am mostly to busy or broke to get into it. As a cultural thing, music and art go hand in hand for me. One of the reasons I still like to buy CDs and records is to check out the art and design that go into the packaging. It’s very cool to see some folks out there making both.

If anyone knows any other good artists or designers who are also taking an active hand in music, send us note.

-Jayson

Totally forgot about Sgt. D from Stuff You Will Hate. A mixtape of scene music up today. He designs for Hella Mass Tight. I seriously cannot recommend listening to this music at all. However the man’s work is totally solid and props must be given.