december 22, 2002.
I hardly ever found the time to go to that gorgeous Parisian boat-on-the-Seine club, the Batofar (which means:
'LighthouseBoat', and indeed - that's what it is).
[ euphemism ]
But I did go there this friday.
The beats of DJ Benno Blome actually managed to unblock my nose ...
... temporarily ...
No kiddin' ...
december 13, 2002.
I received my copy of the "Signs & Symptoms"-CD, made at mp3.com's.
The thing was kind of a 'test' actually, my first ever 'press-on-demand' CD project, and overall I'm pretty pleased with the product.
The cover-art, by
Peter Mertens, is excellent indeed.
The inside booklet art is cut just a couple of millimetres short, though - I've seen others complain about that with
respect to their CD - but, anyway, it's good enough for me.
[ So let it be good enough for you, too ... :-) ]
It is an interesting document.
Stunningly lo-fi, sound quality wise.
Which will hardly come as a surprise, given the history of these recordings.
Let me give you their history.
done, in the summer of 1980, on Akai reel-to-reels, at 19cms (7.5ips) speed. Shortly after we took the tapes to a low-budget four track studio for
mastering. I cannot remember whether we worked there directly with the original tapes, just mounting them on the four track machine,
or whether we copied the chosen parts onto another tape, and worked from there. The mix down probably was recorded onto tape on a
Revox, though - as we intended to distribute the result on cassette - it might as well have been a master cassette
that we made.
[It is pretty surprising, to myself that is, how little I do remember of these technical details. Well, maybe that is because I have not had the slightest need to remember them for over twenty-two years, until a few minutes ago, when I started to write this ...]
Yes ... ... well ...
The cassette copies were made by Peter. So he probably knows. He might even still have the master, be it a tape or cassette.
The only 'close to the original' copy that I have is one of the cassette copies of the master. (Unless, of course, the master was
a tape, and Peter made a copy on cassette to use as a master cassette, in which case my copy is a copy of that copy ... :-) ...)
Five years ago, in 1997, a friend digitalized the cassette for me. We captured the tracks in ProTools and from there cut a red book master CD.
The corresponding ProTools session, of course, was not kept, so earlier this year I re-imported the tracks from that CD back into ProTools again, and then bounced them as 128kbs mp3-files.
The audio part of the Signs & Symptoms CD contains the expanded versions of these mp3.files.
Resplendently lo-fi indeed.
Fascinating though, dear Watson. Fascinating ... interesting also to get feedback on this, more than twenty years after. Here's two recent comments that were posted on an mp3 messageboard: "This stuff is disturbing but strangely alluring. It is very original. It seems like it has no structure until you get to the end and for some reason it becomes memorable." And: "It's people like you that bring a new era to music. Maybe in the future everyone will have those type beats" ...
Awright...! So Back to the Future it will be! ....
Buy Signs & Symptoms !
[ Amphibious: A
young person's guide to Frippertronics; earlier related SB-entry: Survivors
in the city wear clean underwear.
dec. 2003: following mp3.com's fall, the SS CD is no longer available.
feb. 2006: listen to Signs & Symptoms at Last.fm ... ]
Added September 2012: Get a hi-quality digital download of Signs & Symptoms at Bandcamp: