Saturday, May 24, 2008

Electronic Explorations

Mr. Rob Booth has just done a big podcast radio show with spotlight on my favorite electronic lady, Mrs. Jynx! He gave Jynx an opportunity to create her own mini-mixset as well. I was pretty flattered that she wanted to play the remix of Kites I did in her own mixset, and then Rob contacted me and asked for some more Milieu tunes to play! I gave him five different ones but he decided on Pinwheel Carousels from Echo Spectrum. It's way cool to be included in this podcast so go check it out!


Wednesday, May 21, 2008

Shop Updated

MMX001 / 3" CD-R

$5.00 PLUS S&H

Presenting the first in a soon to be ongoing series of 3" EPs, all ambiguously titled Dustybox Tracks. This "series" will function as a sort of extension to what Wasted Magic In The Sound and Our Blue Remixes did, which was, for the newcomer to all this, give all the remixes done by me or for me a proper loving home. So this first installment yields 5 remixes I did for friends of mine that haven't been and probably won't be released anywhere else. The lineup includes Track53 (from Archaic Horizon), Like Birds (an amazing talent that I am surprised no one else knows yet), Thisket (from Custom Music Records.before they collapsed), The Artificial Sea (a boy-girl
duo from up north) and Mrs Jynx (the Lisa Frank of electronic music!). Packaged with several different colorful retro-styled patterns and only $5. Check it out if it sounds appealing to you!



I've recently finished work on two versions of an album called Anthelion. Initially there was only one version but it didn't seem complete, so I revisited the material this year (after the first version was recorded last Summer) and finalized a second version that somehow makes the whole concept work, in my mind at least.

To elaborate a bit - the two versions are labeled as "white" and "night", respectively. The first difference between them is obviously the music - both discs contain four extended pieces, however the songs are polar opposites of one another. The "white" version is more ambient, built with only a lucid field recording of a sleet storm and sub-bass drones and melodies. The "night" version is more textural and very similar to my work on the Porch split with Ophibre - this one is built using more processing and live tape degradation over a backdrop of murmuring country field recordings, recorded last Summer at my mother in law's woodside home. Beyond this, the packaging for both versions is also entirely different - the "white" version is housed in a plastic sleeve with neat hologram paper inserts and decals, while the "night" version is housed in a plastic sleeve with patterned cloth-paper inserts.

These are albums built for the upcoming Summer heat and humidity. Much like Porch, the sound of the "night" version is very crisp and crackly and tonal, while the "white" version is intended to be more of a physical listening environment than an audible one. Regarding this version - I do not recommend purchasing the "white" version of Anthelion if you don't have any audio equipment that will respond to sub-bass frequencies - a decent car stereo, a subwoofer, a bigger home stereo system, or really nice headphones (mine are Bose) will all probably be just fine, but if you're looking to take Anthelion with you in your MP3 player of choice, I'd advise against it because all you're likely to hear is a field recording and some sparse clicks (that is if you're using those earbud things).

Without any further explanations - here are links to purchase each album. Get one or the other or both if you'd like, both versions are limited to 30 copies and only $8.00 each.




MML022 / 3" CD-R
$5.00 PLUS S&H

A very limited (almost promotional) 3" single containing both versions of my Coppice Halifax remix for Alpha Aesar's track "Synthetic Sun". Alpha Aesar asked me for a remix to include on their upcoming CD at I, Absentee and little did I know I'd end up recording an epic 17 minute dub track for it. So I did a more summed-up edit for their release with permission to release the full original mix on a limited run to the list folks. So here it is - the only time you'll get to hear both versions! This style is a bit new for me, very minimal but very hypnotic and feel-good enough to work for the Summertime. Expect more music in this vein from Coppice Halifax in the future! Anyway this is a quite limited affair as I do not want to undermine any attention from the Alpha Aesar disc, so not even 30 of these have been made. Get one for $5 if you're into it!


Friday, May 16, 2008

25 25 25

Well as of today I am officially 25 years old! Actually to be more specific I was born via C-section at almost 6 PM today. I was considerably late and I still to this day believe that is the real reason why I always oversleep and can never make a date on time. I still have no real plans apart from a dinner with Sophia somewhere nice. Maybe some wine.

Also, the first official Milieu video has been uploaded to Youtube! Shot by the talented Michael James Whelan using only Super 8 film, it's a fairly simple video of a drive through the Irish countryside as the sun goes down. I asked Michael to pick whatever track on my Colortone album he wanted to do a video for, and he picked "Pillow Whiter". My only request was that he get something very colorful and organic, and that's exactly what it is!

Youtube Link

Wednesday, May 14, 2008

Sad Birthday Tape

So my birthday is coming up on the 17th and I have to admit I have not really started thinking about it at all until now. Sophia and I have some plans to go see They Might Be Giants in June with Angie, and we're all looking forward to that as sort of our collective "happy birthday" since mine and Angie's birthdays are this month and Soph's is June 23rd...anyway, as for the actual day of my birthday, I have no idea what to do! We're considering getting all our friends together to go eat fondue but I'm still not sure. Having your friends come out to an expensive ass restaurant when they're just as broke as you are isn't exactly hip!

So I'm sitting here, making myself depressed because I've gotta dub these Teenager cassettes for some SSR orders and damn if this material doesn't always get to me. Blah blah blah. It's strange to think that I'll be a quarter of a century old! I don't even remember what I would've been thinking about last year around this time...maybe just some wine and tapas at Gervine. I do recall telling myself Sun-Day would be finished before my 25th birthday, mostly because I wanted to be able to say I completed a 24-disc boxset in the year I was 24, but obviously Sun-Day isn't done because that idea would've rushed the shit out of the project and I'd regret it what a rant!

I know nobody comes here to read about my everyday life. All you really care about is music, right? Well here's all the music updates I have right now: 4 new releases are coming in the shop next week...the first official Milieu video has been completed and will be online for free soon...did a ton of remixes recently, for folks such as Wood-Land, Asymmetrical Head, Eleven Steps, Alpha Aesar, Obfusc...working on even more for Phasen, Humeka and Koen Park...sending some demos out for the first time in years, not really because I need people to release me or anything, but more because poor David and me can't release EVERYTHING I make these days, and also because I sort of need to find out if anyone out there in the label world even cares about releasing a Milieu album if any of you reading this want a catchy beat-based Milieu album and are willing to press it on vinyl, please get in touch! I have a completed 14 track record that's just sitting in the vault because Colortone isn't even out yet!

Anyway, to give this blog post some sort of purpose, here's a little mixtape I made for myself and some friends on my birthday month. Let me know if any of you are interested in a rip and I'll upload it somewhere.

Jandek - Left The Beach Last Sunday
Otis Redding - I've Got Dreams To Remember
Freescha - Abominable Love
Dadamah - High Tension House
Throbbing Gristle - Blood On The Floor
The Cardigans - War
Iggy & The Stooges - I Need Somebody
Lee Hazlewood - The Night Before

Rob Montejo - In Light Of
Sagor & Swing - Melodi
Shuttle358 - Finch
Roommates - National Anthem
Spiritualized - Shine A Light
The B-52's - Follow Your Bliss

Saturday, May 10, 2008

Slow Lid Close Reviewed In 2007

Found this review for Slow Lid Close while poking around online! Apparently someone at EMCRadio really enjoyed my record!

Milieu - Slow Lid Close
exp011 | 50:38 | 2005

Milieu - a project of the South Carolina based musician Brian Grainger. Milieu’s Slow Lid Close LP is a 13 track masterpiece that was released by the Experimedia net-label in early 2005. Layered melodic downtempo breakbeat driven ambient idm.
The opener Lazer Ring provides a great introduction as it made me feel as if I was flying, floating further into beautiful harmonies, funky rhythms and gently echoing electronica. I really tuned in and enjoyed what I heard. It is rich, deep and atmospheric with clever little beats, and never feels repetitive. There is a nice balance of sound throughout, and each song lives and dies in perfect span length, a tricky art, but effortlessly achieved on each track.

This is a chilled album, quite dreamy with a real sense of innocence. Tracks like Blueskies wash over me like short sweet lullabies. At times I am reminded of Sigur Ros.

Track three Sunshine People steps it up with strong bass, synth, interestingly tasty beats, not to mention the angelic choirs, that make the hair on my arms quiver. Inspiring. Listen to this if you want to lie back and watch the world go by. Boards of Canada similarities.

I found many songs on the album to be visually inspiring (or inspired?) for instance Northern Lights resonates with me on many levels: just the pure bass vibes alone will get you. I imagined a landscape painted by sounds and no longer felt like I was in my bedroom anymore, instead transported to Nordic planes and lands of ice. Music like this raises the roof, while still being soooooooo chill. Extremely likeable rhythms, your brain can dance to while you remain, curled up and cosy, and wicked melodies to space out to. I don’t like to put music into any one category, and I certainly don’t want to box this album, but to try and describe it I would say it crosses over between trippy, happy, dancy and meditative music. I’m sure people from a broad variety of tastes could get into this album.

Check out the cool track names too! Magic Marker is a great listen with enough variations moving the music through, keeping my attention while the main melody rides a float. Sweet synth!!! If there were a type of music I’d like to make it would be similar to this. This is indeed magic. Revealing hidden colours and hues of a musical memory filled landscape. I love this stuff!

Orange Evening Windows sends organs breathing down my ears, in a manner so oceanic and vast. They’ve done it again with this sweet track. Its airyness is grounded with the ultra fat bass, so it is gentle without being chicken shit. I mean that as a compliment, these tracks are just the right length and so tasty you want more. Luckily the following track Floating Riverbed provides this with more of the same sounds and fat bass line combo.

Trip To is a beautiful, slow moving track, with such a simple two note melody, punctuated with easy, swaying beats. It’s interesting to listen to music carefully pared down to the basic core elements of music with feeling, and then also find really delicate, intricate passages of rhythm, which lift the whole track to another realm. If this music was food it would be classic gourmet (but without the elitism!)
Autumn Fog Lifts to reveal softly stuttering rhythms joined by a harps joyful lament. This is an early morning ‘I’ve been up all nite’ and ‘watching the dawn before I happily crash’ kinda tune.

Forest groovily conjures up the images suggested by the title. At seven minutes this is one of the longest on the album but as I said earlier, I cannot find fault with any of the track lengths, they are perfect to my ears. The tracks remain abstract impressions of feelings, emotions, naturesque environs, journeys or experiences and are so simple to relate to.

Carnival Rides Till Sunset brings up the mood a notch, with its carnivalesque melody and sound. My head is still dancing to that one! This is such a lie back and feel good album!

The last but not least track Trapezoid Sing, affirms once more how good this album is especially because I did not feel there were any weak tracks to be found. And even with their similarities in terms of that ambient/beatsy combo, they each feel different, evoke other images and emotions and yet, with the exception of a darker more pained Trainsong, feel hopeful, happy alive and chilled to the core.

I was certainly impressed by the emotive quality and also the great technical ability in the creation of this music.

Milieu. Slow Lid Close. You gotta listen; I know for me it’s a keeper.

Taken from this page.

Tuesday, May 6, 2008

Guided By Leaves

My new 3" for the 21MG Series at SSR has been released! It's called Guided By Leaves and I recorded it using only my voice! Kind of a different approach for the pill-disc this time around, but it yielded very interesting results. From SSR:

Brian Grainger's 21MG Series installment for April is here at last! Guided By Leaves is a moody wash of crackly drones surfacing from some distant space-ether. Recorded entirely with Brian's voice, this piece begins tonally but eventually warps into a warm haunted fog. Lonesome ghosts of trees along an empty highway, singing to no one.



Monday, May 5, 2008

Skin Diagram

This is my main man David Tagg's newest release, Skin Diagram. Just a quick post here to let everyone know that it's a fantastic slice of 2006-era Tagg and I had the challenging but fun opportunity to master it. On top of that, it's FREE. So go do yourself a favor and support free ambient music, brought to you by none other than the reputable Archaic Horizon label (the same folks that brought you Wasted Magic In The Sound).


P.S. - You can also look forward to seeing a limited run "boxset" of this release at SSR sometime in the next year. When mastering it, I did three different mix versions on top of David's original, so altogether that makes four versions of this record!