Every Friday, Dusted Magazine publishes a series of music-related lists determined by our favorite artists. This week: Belong and Ulysses.
Listed: Belong + Ulysses
Belong are a duo from New Orleans that follow in the tradition of fuzzed-out folks like My Bloody Valentine, Flying Saucer Attack, and Spacemen 3. Yet if you asked Belong about their sources of inspiration they would say contemporary composer William Basinski or Fennesz. Their debut cd is pessimistically descibed as possibly being 'the only record you'll hear from New Orleans this year.' However dubious this is, if it turns out to be true you could do a lot worse than October Language (Carpark), which is a nice, mellow experiment in swooshing, swirling, and buzzing. Belong's Turk Dietrich contributed one of this week's lists
1. Aphex Twin - Selected Ambient Works Vol. 1
My go to album. I can always put this on and be satisfied. It changed my life when I first heard it over 12 years ago and it still holds a special place in my heart. There is never a time when it doesn't make sense.
2. Circulatory System - s/t
My current obsession. The best neo-psychedelic record I have heard in forever. The songwriting is great, and the production is super wild and heavily layered.
3. Gangstarr - Hard To Earn
Broke out a bunch of my classic hip hop records from the early to mid 90's the other day. So many amazing records being put out in that time period from wu-tang to mobb deep to black moon to dre etc... Hoping for another creative flourish to happen real soon in the hip hop world...kanye west is not the savior of hip hop. This record has my favorite production by DJ Premier and some of the smoothest lyrics ever delivered on the mic by Guru
In the tradition of George Martin and Brian Eno, Flood is one of productions all time great studio wizards. Having directed such masterpieces as Violator, The Downward Spiral, and To Bring You My Love, Flood's productions are notoriously meticulous and layered; they are also all totally varying in sound and tone. He has helped create some of the most amazing synth, guitar, and drum treatments I have ever heard. My hero.
5. Cocteau Twins - Heaven Or Las Vegas
Liz Frazier has the voice of what an angel must sound like, and Robin Guthrie's spacious & oceanic guitar tones have inspired me for years. This record is the pinnacle of their output.
In my late teens, I went through a serious phase of listening to a lot of music from this time period. In the last couple of years, Michael has really gotten into psychedelic and folk music from that age...I think he is on a search to find every classic song ever recorded in the late 60's. By any means, my love for this time period is at an all time high...Syd Barrett, The Zombies, Tomorrow, J.K. & Company, The Incredible String Band, The Pretty Things, Kaleidoscope, Vashti Bunyan, The Beatles, Silver Apples, Gandalf ...the list goes on forever....Just like Michael, I can't get enough.
7. George Delerue - Score for Jean Luc Godard's Le Mepris (Contempt)
This may be my favorite score for any film. It's basically just one theme that Godard continuously uses throughout the film. Each time the theme appears, the film reaches another high. The first time I saw Le Mepris it had a very profound affect on me and this piece of music had a lot to do with that.
8. Parson Sound - s/t
Swedish group from the late 60's. Less psychedelic or folk....more on the noisy, wall of sound, droney tip. The first time I heard it I couldn't believe the stuff was from 1968. When I listen to this stuff, I realize that I haven't an original idea in my body. Amazing!
9. Q-Lazzarus - Goodbye Horses
Lost synth-pop classic from the late 80's...It's most notable for its appearance in Silence Of The Lambs during the Buffalo Bill "hide the penis" scene. Androgynous vocals, hooky melody, genius synth patches, and eerie as hell - especially in the context of the film.
10. Plastikman - Musik
An 808, a 909, and a 303 with a devilfish mod. Of course there is other instrumentation and effects in the mix but those three are at the heart of the production. Ritchie Hawtin's concept of space is zenith and his 303 lines are the coldest I have ever heard. I miss the Artificial Intelligence era of electronic music.
11. Issac Hayes - Hot Buttered Soul
"Walk On By" is the most amazing song from the last 35 years and Hyperbolicsyllabicsesquedalymistic gave us "Black Steel In The Hour Of Chaos." If albums like this are still being made, please get in touch with me.
DJ’ing since 1991, when Ulysses began his university’s first Techno radio show, Ulysses has been a major player in New York's recent Electro movement. Ulysses is one of the people who defined the eclectic New York techno/electro DJ’ing style later popularized by artists like Larry Tee. His DJ sets are famous for their energy, creativity and panache and have carried him all over the world, with recent appearances in Berlin, Paris and Hong Kong as well as his home base New York City, playing for thousands supporting local superstars the Scissor Sisters at the New York contemporary arts museum PS1’s “Warm-Up” series last summer. Ulysses has several upcoming releases this year, beginning with MBF 12017 and a solo album called Cap'n Hook.
1. Robert Babicz – Mister Head EP (K2)
This is a product of none other than the artist formally known as Rob Acid, under his real name. This is a wonderfully schizophrenic release by The Artist Formally Known as Acid. The A side is a moody, blippy number, complete with live drumming combined with programmed, that goes from practically exploding with emotion to almost stopping completely and starting again. The other side, however is not for rainy days. "Mister Head" has a bassline so catchy you wish you could sing it. Its like rock n roll with a TR-303.
2. Nôze – Kitchen EP (Trapez)
It's glitch techno meets pop sung by a French pirate in his Kitchen, which is somewhere near Jamaica. Confused? Good. This song so infected my head I thought I had a cold. Ahoy! The other side is about drinking something called "Tulip Schnapps" and waking up in the gutter, talking to angels. I have no idea what it is, but it sounds nasty. Apricot schnapps is bad enough.
3. Âme - Rej EP (Sonar Kollektiv)
Every once in a while a techno anthem will come along that somehow combines dance floor energy with a trance-inducing melody that's neither cheesy or boring. Aril Brihka made a career out of his crossover hit "Groove La Chord" on Fragile Records back in 1998, and this release is cut from the same cloth. Simple, melodic, anthemic, beautiful. A real surprise on a label run by Berlin's new-jazz group Jazzanova. Who knew?
4. Todd Terje – Italian Stallion/Eurodans (Full Pupp Records)
Todd is a friend/associate of trendsetting Norwegian producers Lindstromm and Prins Thomas. Keeping things funky, Todd brings a slow Italo groove to the 21st Century on one side and the theme for my as yet un-produced European romance film on the other. This release has everything but the badly accented English singing. What more could you ask for, really?
5. Gui Boratto – Arquipélago EP (K2 Records)
Sometimes minimal techno records feel like there's nothing happening at first, and then inexplicably you end up listening to the whole thing, lost somewhere on the astral plane. I couldn't think of a simpler, Chicago-influenced bassline and arrangement, and yet it the lightest touches make this work. Its like it has magical powers over me. The next thing I know the song is over and I have a room full of people looking at me and another record to queue up. Well, not yet, thankfully, but it could happen.
6. Marc Romboy vs Matthias Tanzman – Who Got The Beats EP (Giant Wheel Records)
This was one of those records I almost passed on getting because it sounded too straightforward and boring at first, quick listen. I'm glad I reconsidered because both sides of this EP has received heavy play by me. The A side is a simple, but effective electronic house track that builds on a theme of a simple buzzy keyboard riff and an odd spoken hip-hop sample. Its a club track in the right ways. The Tanzman remix on the B side brings a clicky sophistication to the mix with deep sub bass, eschewing most of the spoken word sample.
7. Christopher Just – "I'm a Disco Dancer" Remixes (International DJ Gigolos)
Why DJ Hell decided to get some remixes done of 1997's "I'm a Disco Dancer (and a Sweet Romancer)" is beyond me, except I'm glad he did. My friend John Tejada provides one mix, featuring the talents of Qzen, Southern California's answer to Miss Kitten. One thing you can say about John is that he's reliable, and this song does not disappoint. Its sort of like John put the original through the John Tejada machine: it has his crisp sound and a similar arrangement to his last few big floor-fillers, like Paranoia and Triad Jack. Plus, that vocal always makes me smile. Misc. does the duties on the other side and brings a harder edge to the original. I feel like these guys are on a mission to show the world what a sawtooth sound wave sounds like because they sure do like 'em. It's a good thing I do, too.
8. Sharon Phillips – "Want 2/Need 2" (Trentmøller Remix) (Brickhouse Records)
Everyone is on Trentmøller's dick right now, and this remix shows why. Holy cow, he pulled this one out of his ass. Trentmøller is mostly know for well crafted, spaced out minimal techno work on Poker Flat Records. This remix is above and beyond.This is the sort of remix I'd love to be able to make. He takes the rap from the bridge of the forgettable original track and turns it into a frenetic, chopped-up Missy Elliot party jam. He even samples the "Mardi Gras (aka Rock the Bells)" break. Huh?
9. Pigna People – Let 'em Talk DP (Pigna Records)
Pigna People is a collaboration between Pigna/Nature/Final Frontier label owner Marco Passarani and his label mates Francesco De Bellis and Mario Pierro. I think this collaboration was formed because one of them finally figured out how to make his synth make those stabs Morris Day and the Time used to use, because they feature that sound on nearly every song. Well God bless 'em. No computers were harmed in the creation of this record, this dance music was done the old fashioned way – with analog gear. Each track on here is a great high-energy dancefloor techno track that doesn't lose any touch of musicality. Hints of Italo and funk abound, as well. Its a party on a platter (well, two platters).
10. Terry Brooks and Aaron Soul – "City Lights" (Carl Craig's Max Mix) (Rush Hour Records)
In a word: deep. OK, I'm a sucker for a good soulful vocal (keep in mind, I'm talking about GOOD soulful vocals) and this song is so full of soulful vocals it would scare away a city full of Germans. But its so sweet. Techno godhead Carl Craig keeps the music from sailing the seas of cheese by keeping it stripped down. By the time this song is done building up there won't be an unmoved heart or dry crotch in the house, however you get your kicks. The only thing I wish was if there was a mix that had the same arrangement but without the vocals, because a jock like me can't always play a vocal like this. Unfortunately, Carl's Caya Dub mix is a different, not as interesting, arrangement. It's OK, I'll play the vocal.
11. Ulysses – Why Don't You EP (Play's Cool Records)
I don't know if it's gauche to list my own records on here, but I'll do it anyway, because this is one of the rare records I produced myself that I actually play on a regular basis. Most of the time the creative space in my mind to make music doesn't overlap much with the side that puts together DJ sets, though they work great together to make a mean brisket. The A side is my own little idea of a pop song, sung by me and my robot. The B-side track "Prince Charles Gone Funky" is the one I play all the time. Somedays you sit down and put together a bunch of loops and nothing works, and sometimes you put together a bunch of loops and everything works. This is every loop all at once. It has an old school feel with a up-to-date energy. Its great for transitioning between a classic old record and a new one. It also slices. dices, and julienne's. I'd buy them by the dozen, if I were you.
By Dusted Magazine