One of my favourite sites of the year has arguably been SoundCloud, one of the ever growing number of “targeted” networking sites. Where as the quite well known YouTube and slightly less well known Vimeo deals with video and it’s various forms, SoundCloud deals with Music but as opposed to the likes of Spotify or Last.fm that help established artists, SoundCloud is there for some of the more “experimental” or “legally dubious” pieces that 20 years ago would have been passed on White Label vinyls or 10 years ago on unmarked CD-Rs.
There are many, many well known electronic artists on there and my current personal favourite is West Country legend, legally denied Jedi Knight and all round genius Tom Middleton who’s uploaded many of his remixes, both official and unofficial to the site. But two of my favourite pieces up on the site at the moment are at both ends of the musical spectrum and show just how much variety there is on the site.
First up is something done by my friend Tim Maughan over at his eponymous site Tim Maughan Books. Here he’s done a mix under his pseudonym Shinohara Heavy Industries, which I’m sure is a reference to a particular company from an Anime. Better ask him, he’s the expert after all, something you’ll realise after a visit to his site. He’s put together a deep house techno mix with just a hint of minimal here and there, so gets a solid thumbs up from me.
Here’s a thought. What if we took this guy and slowed him down to 1/8th of the speed so that one of his songs took 35 minutes to play? Would sound awful, no? Surprisingly not. The whole track was stretched using a program called PaulStretch, something that was used to create the 9 Beet Stretch project, one which played Beethoven’s 9th Symphony stretched out over a 24 hour period. Which I’ve heard and is an odd experience, I can tell you. This however, is beautiful and just about the right length.
The bit around the 21 minute mark pretty much stopped me in my tracks. Well, it would have if I hadn’t been sitting down but it’s still pretty epic.
So there we are. A wide world of music out there and all of it free to listen without adverts. One in the eye for Spotify I think. And Mr. Tim Maughan shares a blog post with that Beiber Boy. He’ll be so thrilled.