December 27th, 2013

i before e except after c


So, I am finally back after a nice break, although a little longer than I had hoped. A combination of no internet, no Nord, and a few days where I simply decided to stop all has amounted to an almost 10 day break… wow!

I am quite eager to get back into it.

It’s always nice to have some time away, a great time to think over things, learn and practice new ways to look at things, think about things, and share experiences.

If like me you are based in the UK, you might have been caught by the storms… when I say storms I mean English storms, you know the type that stops us in our tracks while the rest of the world looks on and wonders what the fuss is about. Still, I am sure a few fences fell over here and there. Although, no, in all seriousness, there was some places hit by it worse than others I am sure.

I spent a good 5 and a half hours on a train returning back to London, a good portion of that stationary waiting for a tree to be removed form the line. Still, for a person who normally gets quite bored travelling on trains, I was in a very good mood, and time flew by. I found it quite enjoyable to watch others in a state that I would have normally be in, frantic, bored, frustrated, argumentative even, where as this time I sat happy and actually pleased to have some time to think.

With all breaks, the time to get going again can create that little pit in the bottom of the stomach. There is a want to just hang on to a few more days, doing nothing, sitting around in your PJ’s, watching re-runs of Indiana Jones, eating and drinking more in a day than you would in a week.

It does show though, how we are creatures of habit. That in just a few days, we can loose all momentum, with new habits of lounging around taking precedence. I have to say I definitely feel like that right now, feeling more inclined to play one more game of The Walking Dead Monopoly than do anything else. Still, what stops me in the end, is that I have been here many times before, and know where it goes, where it eventually ends up… which is a place called boredom.

So, to kick things back into gear, I decided to do something inspired by something I heard over the holidays. I bought the LP Upstairs at Eric’s by Yazoo for my girlfriend Lucia, and was reminded by a track that I haven’t heard for a while called ‘i before e except after c’. It is a quirky, experimental track, and unlike many of the other pop records surrounding it. It reminded me of Autechre, that is, the old Autechre, with the resonant bass mono-synth sound, along with similar spooky string sounds. I decided to recreate these parts of this track, but modifying it and taking it somewhere a little more dubby and electronic I hope. Again, I only used the Atari STE for sequencing, with all sounds created on the Nord G1 using all 4 parts, although essentially 2 pairs of similar sounds. It’s definitely got am early Warp sound to my ears, or at least the sound I enjoyed from that era.

As is always the case in almost everything I like, the best stuff is the simplest.