Saturday, October 29, 2011

Music from Saharan Cellphones

This is pretty cool...  digital artifacts from Saharan cellphones... hat tip to Stinky Jim for this.

Also from same label, Gulls - Mean sound EP, got this a while back, very tasty dub, free tune below..

from the liner notes...." In 2010 returning from extensive travel in Mali and Mauritania, Chris Kirkley (Sahel Sounds) presented “Music from Saharan Cellphones”. The music on the compilation was collected from cellphones in the Northern Malian town of Kidal.

In much of West Africa, cellphones are are used as all-purpose multimedia devices. In lieu of personal computers and high speed internet, cellphones house portable music collections, playback songs on tiny built-in speakers, and swap files through peer-to-peer Bluetooth wireless transfer. The songs collected in Kidal range from DIY Tuareg guitar, auto-tuned Moroccan chaabi, Malian coupé décalé, and fruityloop hip hop.

Originally released as a limited run cassette tape by Mississippi Records in Portland Oregon, the cassette was uploaded to blogs and online media hubs, and quickly became a viral source of new and inspiring sounds.

On Oct.10 2011 Boomarm Nation and Sahel Sounds present: “Music For Saharan Cellphones”. Drawing on gifted producers and musicians from a variety of stylistic backgrounds and nationalities, each artist selected and re-interpreted a musical moment from the source material.

From bass laden sound/clash ventures, abstract re-creations, and even an amazing autotune cover, the end result holds a rich assortment of well informed musical statements. Reflecting the energy and fidelity of its origins, these versions take on their own rare and exciting form. Using the mp3 as the medium, the Music and the Musicians become the diplomacy.

This compilation will be available in 3 formats: 1- FREE digital download via bandcamp and our website. 2- A limited edition cassette tape. (released by Mississippi Records.) 3- MicroSD card. (limited to 30- hand numbered cards, which we will be shipping to Kidal, Mali where they will be redistributed and uploaded into the vast web of digital musics.)

In addition, a limited edition 7” single of Mdou Moctar’s autotune masterpiece “Tahoultine” b/w Gulls remix, will be co-released by Boomarm Nation and Sahel Sounds in November 2011, followed by a 12" LP of "Music from Saharan Cellphones" by Sahel Sounds."

Ring The Alarm playlist, BaseFM, Oct 29

Loopless - Pink blue hotel
Boozoo bajou - Camioux - melodica cut
Wajeed - Jeedo suave
Lord Echo - Thing I like to do
Monguito Santamaria - Hey sister
Doris Troy - Get back
Sister Sledge - Love dont you go thru no changes on me
Jackie Stoudemire - Invisible wind  -Shoes re-edit
Soul searchers - We the people - Danny Krivit edit
Ikebe shakedown - Asa-sa
Sharon Jones and the Dapkings - Keep on looking - Kenny Dope remix
Ladi6 - Burn with me
The Yoots - Tutira mai
Omegaman - Skankin riddim - Thomas Blondet remix
Augustus Pablo - East of the river Nile
Barrington Levy - Many changes in life/dub by Scientist
Delroy Wilson - Get ready
King Tubby - This dub is ready
Lee Scratch Perry vs the Moody boyz - God smiled
Timmy Thomas - Why can't we live together - Shoes house mix
Dutch rhythm combo - Bonaire
Nina Simone -Taking care of business - Pilooski edit
Harlequin fours - Set it off - US 12" mix by Walter Gibbons
John Edwards singers  -New burying ground

Friday, October 28, 2011

R.I.P. Eric Marsden (The Androidss)

Eric Marsden (The Androidss) has passed away. Heard that via Chris Matthews (Headless Chooks) on Facebook. His brother Steve passed away in early March 2009.

I was lucky enough to catch this tribute gig in 2009 to Steve's memory, featuring the remaining members of the Androidss (including Eric) performing, alongside The Spelling Mistakes, The Newmatics and Chris Matthews and his band Robot Monkey Orchestra.

ADDED 1 Nov - saw this via Robert Southon on Facebook - "For friends of Eric and of the Androidss, there is a wake on Nov 9th at the Tabac Bar in Auckland."
ADDED 2 Nov  - via Loriah in the comments - A memorial wake for Eric is to be held at the Richmond Working Mens Club in Christchurch on Friday Nov 4th from 4pm.

"This band [had] a great and large repertoire of songs that were most unfortunately lost to history. A contributing factor to their history and lack of recordings was due to a couple of members doing jail time. However, "Auckland Tonight” and “Getting Jumpy" were the only two songs to have been recorded/documented/saved, thanks to Ripper Records." [source]

ADDED: Eric Marsden of the Androidss outside the Media Club, Christchurch before the band's gig 23/10 2008 (more info on the gig here, apparently it was a fundraiser, and there is mention of their planned album). Photo by Robin Mcilraith (and cannot be reused without Robin's permission). Thanks for sending me this, Robin.

Photo by Robin Mcilraith

Photo from Robin Mcilraith. Apparently Eric used to give out this photo to his female fans!

Here's some words that Mark Wilson of the Androidss wrote on Steven Marsden's passing ...[source]

Mark Wilson formed The Androidss with Stephen and remembers him accordingly...

"Raging at the Gresham Tavern with The Basket Cases when Zephyrs and Cortinas were polluting the atmosphere was cool but nothing compared to The Androidss! In 1978 the party hit the road. Stephen and Eric Marsden (identical twins), Mark and Neil Spence, Arthur Manawatu, Frank Stenjes and I threw together some tunes. Armed with pot, alcohol, guitars and attitude we created a repertoire of Iggy, Bowie, Mick Jagger, Lou Reed, Blondie, Magazine covers mixed with my eclectic soul searching originals. Arthur left so Steve and I fronted the band. Playing around Christchurch to small audiences soon led to us play support for NZ touring bands such as the Dudes, Toy Love and The Swingers. Iggy Pop saw us perform his songs at the British Hotel in Lyttelton. Stephen and I sat with him and drank whisky. The press quoted him: "they're tough as bitches but they're beautiful!"

Next we headed for Auckland. "Androidss suck" was the cry from local punks, skinheads and boot boys; fagends flicked in our faces as we forged our way into the Auckland scene. Shaving off to create a new image, we fitted in to the punk scene and the arty new wave culture. This inspired Stephen to write Auckland Tonight. Packing out the Rhumba Bar, photos in magazines and posters catapulted our popularity and after touring back to Christchurch headlining gigs we recorded our one and only record. Stephens' Auckland Tonight and my song Getting Jumpy went to number 18 on NZ charts! Steve's song was put to video for the popular show Droppa Kulcha. We had sort of made it!

Living the rock'n'roll lifestyle took its toll and we disbanded. The party was over. Mark split to London, I got married and the others stayed in Auckland eventually coming back to Christchurch, except Steve who lived the rest of his days devoted to his wife Andrea.

I am grateful to have had these experiences with Steve. His incredible enthusiasm and energy coupled with his humour gave me something to hang off; flanking him on his right with my guitar while he sang and I played my solos. I will never forget those times. Last year Stephen got up and sang with the new millennium Androidss. Liberate The Androidss!

For Stephen, May God Bless him - Mark Wilson

ADDED : Bryan Staff talks about the photo below, with NZ Musician's Trevor Reekie..."It was at David Gapes’ birthday party at the King’s Arms in 1992. I don’t know who took it – but it was on my camera." There's another photo of Eric and Steve there too, with Greg Carroll.

King of the bongo

Was reminded of this song earlier, here's a cool version, live at Abbey Road, from Manu Chao...

Thursday, October 27, 2011


From LA Times, Snoop Dogg and crew in the studio working on two tunes for Snoop's next album, and two tunes for the much anticipated Detox from Dr Dre... there's a bunch of messing round, and then they get into the beat making, which is some pretty awesome music...

"...Though Snoop is often portrayed as the goofy avuncular stoner, this is the side of him as the true artist, surrounded by lauded producer DJ Quik, who arrives with a black box that he describes as "every drum machine you ever wanted in your life, rolled into one." Beaming, Snoop picks it up and tells the camera: "This is the cheat sheet, straight from DJ Quik's living."

.... Like most Dre-related work, there are live guitarists and drummers, mixed with machines both analog and digital. In between the blunt smoking and conversations with members of Guerillas in Tha Mist (!), there's the ineradicable emphasis on topping the past.

Snoop readily references "Still D.R.E" and the wild reaction it continues to get from crowds even a dozen years after its release. He describes it as the "[last stuff], it was perfect. We need to find something flawless for Dre and he ain't listening past the first 10 seconds."...


Cheese On Toast did an interview recently with Peter and Roland about Hallelujah Picassos retrospective out next Monday, watch it below. They've also got the album stream up too.

ADDED You can now pre-order the CD from Amplifier, they ship internationally too. More here.

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Womad 2012 lineup

Introducing: Staff Benda Bilili from Glen Milner on Vimeo.

The lineup for next year's Womad Festival in New Plymouth (March 16-18) was announced this evening. Highlights include Mad Professor, Staff Benda Billili, Master Drummers of Burundi, Groundation, The Yoots, Black Seeds, Paul Urbana Jones, Pajama Club, and more. More info at the Womad site. Full lineup below.

Adam Page
Amiria Grenell and Band
Anda Union
Batucada Sound Machine
Bombay Royale
Chapelier Fou
Diego Guerrero y El Solar de Artistas
Dobet Gnahore
Gurrumul Yunupingu
Le Trio Joubran
Lo' Jo
Mad Professor
Mahala Rai Banda
Mama Kin
Master Drummers of Burundi
Minuit vs. Gamelan Taniwha Jaya
Narasirato Pan Pipers
Paul Ubana Jones
Sharon Shannon Big Band
Shivkumar Sharma
Staff Benda Bilili
Te Mātārae i Orehu
The Black Seeds
The Yoots
The Nukes
Pajama Club

Related post: Womad 2008, random notes (including that time I got my photo with the incredible Miss Sharon Jones)

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Picasso core

Hugh Sundae of the NZ Herald has posted a great piece on the forthcoming Hallelujah Picassos reissue, out next Monday. There's the new video, and an excerpt from the CD liner notes, written by Simon Grigg. Here it is...

Extract from Simon Grigg's liner notes for Rewind the Hateman

"The Picassos arrived in 1988 and Auckland, and indeed, New Zealand, had seen nothing like them.

Whereas most of their influence-mashing contemporaries combined two, or at most, three of the above musical revolutions together, Hallelujah Picassos took absolutely no prisoners and slammed them all together in an almost violent and ruthless amalgam of joy.

And you either loved them or hated them. There was no middle ground. Harold's performance and Bobbylon's sweet noise didn't offer you the non-committal option.

I loved them, and found that it was both exhilarating and exhausting to be in their presence. You thrilled at the energy and seductive melody, but found yourself utterly shattered as they walked off... and I'm not a dancer. I can but try to imagine how the band felt.

In almost any other nation they'd likely have been adopted by the fringes of the mainstream and done quite well given their look and sound, but in an era when airplay for their sort (y'know: NZ bands) on any radio stations outside of student radio was non-existent, their sales remained steady but unspectacular, driven mostly by live shows.

But their influence was undeniable, and a generation of local acts who refused to accept the boundaries that those Pink Floyd and Dire Straits-loving critics defined owe massively to the Picassos, often without realising exactly how much they broke down the barriers of musical conservatism in Auckland and beyond.

However their catalogue has languished since then, being largely unavailable, aside from a track here and there, throughout the 21st century.

Until now... and this, I guess, is as good a place as any to encourage you to take a leap into the recorded work of one of the most important New Zealand acts of their time.

Enjoy. I will."

See Hallelujah Picassos to release retrospective album. There's also a link at the bottom of the Herald story to a 1992 interview with the Picassos, by Graham Reid

Monday, October 24, 2011

Homebrew defend NZ

Homebrew Crew - God Defend NZ remix from Augusto on Vimeo.

Homebrew take on our National Song for David Farrier's journey into the history of New Zealands National Anthem, God Defend NZ. Screened on TV3 Saturday 22nd Oct at the matinee time of 2.30pm.

and Streetchant...

Street Chant - God Defend NZ Cover from Augusto on Vimeo.

RIP Edmundo Ros

"The seductively orchestrated Latin-pop songs that set British feet tapping in the 1940s and 50s made the Trinidad-born bandleader Edmundo Ros a household name. But beside such musical success, Ros, who has died aged 100, made a remarkable reinvention of his life: the mixed-race "outsider" successfully challenged the British class system, to become, as he put it, "a respected gentleman".

When he went to London in June 1937 to study at the Royal Academy of Music, he felt racially categorised by being sent to lodgings for colonial students. A tall, strikingly handsome man, he was determined to crash through such restrictions. Within five years, he had deployed his talents, charisma and charm to good enough effect to find himself performing for the future Queen of England – and was himself developing a cut-glass accent." 
Read in full: Edmundo Ros obituary, The Guardian