The Null Device
Posts matching tags 'djing'
The vinyl record "died" in the 1980s, killed off by the increased convenience of cassettes and CDs (and the recording industry's drive to get people to buy their music all over again), though, thanks to hip-hop and dance-music DJs, enjoyed a vibrant second life. Niche labels started putting out vinyl, new pressing plants opened, and then the majors got back into the game. Now, it seems that vinyl's second life may be coming to an end; Technics have announced that they are discontinuing their iconic 1200 and 1210 turntables, as more DJs realise that digital DJing technology has improved spectacularly, and that the old arguments about it not being authentic or "proper DJing"* aren't getting any less tired than the ones about digital photography not being real photography. Indeed, while Technics scrap their turntables, their rival Pioneer have just released a new CD DJ deck which can play MP3s off a USB drive; though even such advances in dedicated DJing hardware are in part defensive actions against the onslaught of laptop DJing software.
* What's the DJing equivalent of rockism? Vinylism perhaps?
DJing term of the day: the "toilet track":
In rock club DJing, the "toilet track" is an established set staple – a song long enough to allow the DJ enough time to sprint to the loo and back. It's usually denoted by the appearance of the Stone Roses' I Am the Resurrection (8:13) for a quick dash to the urinal and Fools Gold (9:53) for a more lengthy seated engagement.
The smoking indie DJ has a new God – DFA. As if LCD Soundsystem's Losing My Edge doesn't give you eight minutes of precious smirting time, their remixes can see you through a cigarette break, toilet stop, bar visit and bouncer punch up, and still leave you with a few minutes to pretend you're mixing it yourself. I favour their 12-minute saunter through Dare by Gorillaz or, if I've really got to jog to Aberystwyth and back before the next track, their 13-minute go at Goldfrapp's Slide In. That one's so long, danceable and innocuous that you could put it on repeat for the full two hours and even Alison Goldfrapp herself would still pay you in full at the end.
A DJ in Russia built his own DJing cassette decks, with hand-operated jog-dials and motor and pitch controls, all in handmade Masonite packaging for that ghetto-tech look. And there's a Flickr photo set here.
Well, the DJ set went quite well. I played for around two hours in total (I can't tell exactly, as it was too dark to see, and the three pints of Guinness I had on the drinks rider probably also contributed). I managed to play a bit of The Charm Offensive (Just Like Bob & Terry) and The Lollies (their hidden track, Happy), which was quite possibly the first time either act was played in Australia, and expose the good Seaworthy/Heligoland fans to my choice of music, getting a fairly positive response. (I played a bit of the sort of ethereal/shoegazer stuff that would go well at such a gig, like Slowdive, Lush, &c., a few other things that fit in reasonably well (The Field Mice, and various other indie bands), a few tracks by local bands, and some odd things which people found amusing (including the cover of Smells Like Teen Spirit recently mentioned here).)
The only major hitch is that I suspect my old Sony Discman finally gave up the ghost towards the end of the set; at least it was considerate enough to not do so at the start, though.
The bands, btw, were quite good. Seaworthy reminded me a bit of the first Mojave 3 album in places, and Heligoland's new material is sounding quite impressive. (Their cover of Kraftwerk's Neon Lights was also quite inspired.)
Anyway, I'll be DJing again sometime in the near future. Watch this space for details.
Your humble narrator will be DJing this Sunday at Pony, at the Heligoland gig. Expect a combination of shoegazing, laptop electronica, indie-pop and eclectic weirdness. The first DJ set starts about 8ish.