A few weeks ago I did a special DJ set in Stockholm, Sweden. It was a private event called Dungeonwave #2 for the Swedish synthpop label Flexiwave. Flexiwave is owned and run by Jon and Ella Moe. They release some very pretty vinyl records including one of my own releases “The Man Master/Drink with Me”.
The event took place in a large recording studio space where Jon has some equipment along with the modular artist Dungeon Acid. I assume this is where the same of the event came from. The event instantly felt like an afterparty (except this one started around 10PM!). It was invite only so everyone knew each other, danced like crazy and took turns spinning the low hung disco balls in the room. Jon and Ella tag teamed a set. It was great to hear a lot of music I didn’t know. I found myself running up to the booth asking for track IDs all night. Matthias Anger did a great set too. I didn’t realize that night but he runs the CCP label and owns the Kollaps Record store in Stockholm. There were two live shows. Dungeon Acid had a really nice Eurorack Modular set up driven by some Elektron gear. He did an excellent full force NY style techno set. Jocke Boberg (Acid Vals) were two guys doing some acid house “waltz” music with vocals. They were crowd pleasers no doubt. DJ Andi did the absolute best two hour New Beat set I ever heard in my life. It was very early in the morning and everyone there was moving like freaks. It didn’t get past me that a lot of people also knew all the far underground tracks being she played. This was a true EBM/New Beat lovers event! Eskil Simonsson from the band Covenant came and hung out. I also got to catch up with an old friend and music producer Johan Afterglow and his girlfriend Anja. I have a great respect for people like Jon and Ella who work hard and don’t mind spending a little to make great art happen. It was a joy to be there.
The next day I woke up at the Hotel Clarion Stockholm. It’s a super swank hotel with a bar hung over the highway with a giant sports dome in the distance. After breakfast I hit the amazing spa with an infinity pool that is part indoors and part outdoors. To swim from inside to out you push a button and a glass wall rises. Once outside you realize you are swimming a few stories above the sidewalk. I had fun looking at people walking under me and at one point Jon, Ella and Dungeon Acid walked by! Sometimes I really think I’m living in a computer program with glitches.
After feeling rockstar and clean enough I met up with the Flexi’s as I call them. They took me to Kollaps Records. I walked in and “whaah!!”. Wall to wall Electronic Body Music. To get an idea of what the store is like check out the photos I posted here. I bought a Scapa Flow 12″ and a Haus Arafna sticker. If your in Sweden and you like this kind of music this is the place. I enjoying looking through the book at the cash register of “famous” signatures. After the store the Flexi’s took me to a proper Swedish lunch and I was off to Berlin. Stockholm is a very nice place. Be sure to view the entire set of photos on flickr: click here
“We are very proud to annunce the second installment of DungeonWave. This time FlexiWave & Dungeon Acid also join forces with the excellent Kollaps Records. For this special night we have a special appearance by no less then the legend Oliver Chesler aka The Horrorist who is on tour in Europe. Also the fabulous Dj Andi who runs Synthicide in Brooklyn NYC.” – Dungeonwave
My song Heart of Steel (Fire Funmania) will appear on a new compilation titled Inside the Volcano. Complete Control Records from Stockholm, Sweden are doing the fantastic release with 24 electronic body music tracks on it. One of the guys behind CCP, Anders Karlsson will also be performing with myself and Absolute Body Control at the Kalabalik Festival in Växo, Sweden this August 15/16th. I love the artwork on this one! 2CD available this March.
“A compilation where young, hot, electro punk acts like Schwefelgelb, Agent Side Grinder and Petra Flurr + Modernista demonstrate how to take a cue from old school influences and still sound totally fresh and thrilling. Industrial legends Portion Control, Ike Yard and Gerechtigkeits Liga refused to follow the herd when they started out at the dawn of the 1980s. They still do, and they remain as relevant and exciting as ever. Techno heroes Thomas P Heckmann, The Horrorist and Adriano Canzian have all contributed crushing dance tracks where old school EBM and furious techno fuse seamlessly. Also represented on Inside The Volcano is the new breed of leftfield dance music with mind blowing tracks from Equitant, Friherren, Diamond Skull District and K-Nitrate.” – ccproductions.org
So there is an all new version of Izotope’s Trash (Trash 2) that was just released. It’s certainly good and has hundreds of paramaters you can mess with. Sometimes however you just want a really good distortion unit with a few killer presets. Think about guitar pedals and imagine if they had a hundred options. That wouldn’t make sense. kiloHearts from Linköping, Sweden have plug-in called Faturator. It’s really nice, lightweight and with a great sound. This reads like a sales pitch and they did give me a NFR license however I really am using the plug-in a lot. Besides the “right” sounding fuzz and distortion there is a great stereo widener which I actually used a few times on its own (turning off the fuzz altogether). $19 USD Mac or PC.
“Faturator can do everything from adding subtle and warm gritty character to your sounds to slam them into a wall of heavy saturation and digital fuzz. Contrary to many distortion effects, Faturator will preserve the dynamics of your sound and work its wonders on it regardless of input gain. For the heck of it, it can also color the input to emphasize a specific tone of the sound, or throw some stereo width into the mix. Everything to give you a fast and easy way of making any input come alive.” – kilohearts.com
I really wanted to post the track “Pajazzo: by Kitchen and the Plastic Spoons but I couldn’t find an embed anywhere. This Swedish band was only together for about two years (1980-1981). It’s a shame they didn’t record more back then because I love there Devo meets goth synthpunk style.
“Since disbanding, their songs have become well sought-after by collectors of punk, gothic rock, deathrock and art punk music.” – Wikipedia
I owned the original Nord Lead and I always regretted selling it. The Nord’s are beautifully designed virtual analog Swedish synthesizers with stone modulation wheels and wooden pitch knobs. I really liked the fact the original Nord Lead didn’t have any effects. I also still think that it has an original sound to it. It doesn’t sound like an analog synth or a VA copycat. Although some people say the now discontinued Nord Lead 3 sound was compromised no one can argue the LED knobbed interface wasn’t amazing (pic below). I wonder why they stopped producing it.
“Nord Lead 2x FX / Abstract, all sounds programmed by WC Olo Garb. Video editing by WC Olo Garb.” – Jexus
The new Nord Wave is really interesting as it allows you to load samples into it and then allows you to further synthesize and play. I hope to get my hands on one and load some of my own vocals into it and see what happens. For an interesting Wave video showing VSTs and Reason Synths loaded into it: click here