Something About Creating Music

So, I know that one of the misconceptions about me is that I do so much music all day, but from my end this not true. Last friday Jad Fair was in Extrapool, I did the bar (serving rather than consuming), and talked a bit (a good bartender always listens but I talk) with Jan van den Dobbelsteen, who was surprised by this notion. Unfortunately I said, I don’t have that much time to do music, but I told him that last week I worked a bit on two different things. I might as well share it with you. The first is that I completed a cassette release, to be called ‘Kubus’. Freek Kinkelaar asked me to do a cassette for his Beam Ends label, which he will only release if he really likes it. Fair enough, I said, but it may mean I’ll end with a whole pile of unreleased work, before he picks out something he likes. Quite unusual for me, I already wrote some liner notes/press text etc of sorts, perhaps as a justification of what I did, or perhaps to inform Freek what it is all about. In any case, I am sharing this here:

Kubus Kassettes, later to be called Kubus Kommunikaties, claimed to be the very first Dutch cassette label. Their first release was a pretty standard sort of rock release, but right then, after that, Kubus started to release experimental music. They were ‘different’ to other labels, offering a more intellectual approach to what they were doing. Rob Smit, the label boss, had his own vision of the ambient music by Brian Eno: the four way musical universe, consisting of the musical matter, time, space and energy. In his own music, he delayed the playing of a glockenspiel and worked with the studio techniques, however minimal, to change the color of the sound. On this cassette I take his ideas, or perhaps I create covers of his pieces. ‘Stemmingen’ uses a bow and a glockenspiel, which are layered extensively. ‘Slag Werk’ uses the same glockenspiel, but played rhythmically. The computer transposes it various ways, in order to create a more gamelan like feel and it uses extensive layers. ‘Terug Gaan’ started as a four track recording of glockenspiel, philicordia organ and sound effects, played in an improvised manner. The four track is then played at half the speed, and transferred to the computer, with channel three and four playing backwards. These four tracks are then played simultaneously and totally edited, but no other computer technique was applied. Unfortunately the tape I pulled from the pile to record this one, did survive ‘time’ very well: the magnetics have come off, and I only noticed this after recording. So in good Brian Eno spirit – honor your mistakes – I decided to go ahead and use this tape, along with the imperfections of the tape. This piece resembles the closest approach to the original Kubus sound.

The picture up there is what I think will be the cover. The other thing I worked on last week was mixing the Ezdanitoff material I recorded with Wouter Jaspers at the end of September. Actually off and on I worked on this for the last month, but I think its more or less done. Very spacious synth music, but throughout also melodic. Maybe a romantic love record with ballads? That’s what I feel about it, but we’ll have to see what Wouter says, or if he will some substantially different. Its about 37 minutes and must be a CD (tracks flowing into eachother would be my idea). Anyone interested: contact me. Now its back to Vital Weekly for me.

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About fransdewaard
Probably most known from his ongoing work with Kapotte Muziek (a group that fully concentrates on recycling through musique concrete) and as one half of ambient sound-artists Beequeen. As well as writing the informative and acclaimed weekly newsletter "Vital Weekly", Frans De Waard also founded the Korm Plastics label in 1984, initally only offering cassettes, but since 1992 offering an ever-growing catalogue of CDs and vinyl of contemporary experimental music.

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