Wednesday, July 30, 2008

Playing on GJDN Radio

deConstruction of a Stigmata on GDJN Radio...
one night. two time zones.

My first mashup album, deConstruction of a Stigmata, will be aired on the Global DJ Network (GDJN) Internet radio on Thursday, July 31, 2008.

It will be played at 2 different times to accommodate evening listeners in Europe/UK, and evening listeners in North America.

Here's the play times...

1. Thurs July 31 at 10:00 PM BST (that's British Summer Time if you're wondering)

2. Thurs July 31 at 11:00 PM EDT

Simply go to the GDJN Community site at about 5 minutes before the appropriate play time. You will find the on-line radio box near the top. Click on the appropriate music player icon to launch the music stream in your favourite streaming music player.

No registration is required to listen to the radio, and there's a convenient shoutbox available to chat with members and guests.

Note: If you join the radio 2 hours before the first play time, you can enjoy The Smash Up (airs every Thursday from 8-10 PM BST [3-5 PM EDT]), which is 2 hours of mashup music from various other mashup producers.

You can also download your own free copy of the album on the deConstruction of a Stigmata blog page, as well as get details about the song tracks and a little background about the making of the album.

I hope you find this mashup album enjoyable.

Thursday, July 24, 2008

deConstruction of a Stigmata

deConstruction of a Stigmata - front
deConstruction of a Stigmata - back

Whew! This mashup project is finally done. I have to admit... it was quite the undertaking. It was 3 months in the making, if you include the date when I first started working on the Working Class Stigmata mashup, which was April 25, 2008.

The Working Class Stigmata mashup had spawned the idea of this opus-style mashup album, and after completing that mashup I had immediately continued to expand from it to create over 36 minutes of mashup music that flows from one song into the next. It's a collection of 10 tracks that are a culmination of 26 songs, which have been deconstructed, reconstructed, mixed, and mashed with each other, and the overall sound and style was governed by a very specific theme throughout.

Selection of the source songs for this project was fairly specific. I wanted songs where the lyrics or combined lyrics included some form of religious reference or connotation, and/or the combined names from the songs would create song titles meaningful to the progression of the album. I also wanted to include songs from artists that have had an influence on my musical interests.

Much of the music I really enjoy tends to have a lot of subtle backing instrumentals as it seems to add a lot of depth and layers to a song. If you change your focus within a song, you can hear a different rhythm, melody, or tone, and you end up hearing the song in a different way or it adds additional meaning or emotion to the song. One of my main focuses for this mashup album project was to try to incorporate those type of subtle backing instrumentals throughout the album, and hopefully introduce the same type of depth and layering that some of my favourite artists are so good at doing. After listening to this album, if you have any comments about my level of success in this attempt, please leave a comment for me.

There were some technical challenges to overcome. I did manage to hone a few skills (and then some). In particular, I improved my techniques for extracting vocals and other instrumental segments, and I think I've improved my musical arrangement and remixing abilities, which is more of an art than a skill. I certainly dealt with a lot of work around changing the keys of source songs to put them in the right key, as well as work with harmonizing keys.

Please, give it a listen and send me your comments. Comments let me know whether I'm going in the right direction with my work, or let me know what I can try to improve on, and can just simply affirm the goals and attempts of my work.

I'd like to thank a few people at GDJN and a couple of my colleagues and friends who acted as a sounding board for some of my draft segments, and whose feedback helped to keep my mashup work and goals in focus... you guys know who you are... Thanks guys, I really appreciate the time and effort you put towards it! Even my son got into the action and reluctantly provided some (apologetically) honest and useful feedback.

You can listen to the full album as a single continuous mix via the divShare player below, or download the single continuous mix as an MP3 file via the appropriate link below.

OR, you can download the zip file, which contains a folder with the 10 MP3 tracks from the album, the cover art in a couple of convenient sizes, and a text file with detailed track info. If you have an MP3 player that supports gapless album playback (such as iTunes and the iPod), ensure that you enable gapless album playback for this album if it doesn't pick it up from the ID3 tags... otherwise you'll get some undesirable results.

deConstruction of a Stigmata (Continuous Mix)
36:39 / 192 kbps / 50.6 MB

Download the continuous mix MP3 file here.

Download album as a zip file (52.7 MB)

deConstruction of a Stigmata - Song List

  1. God's on the Horn (1:25)
    OMD - Dazzle Ships
    Revolting Cocks - No Devotion
    The Sisters of Mercy - Ribbons

  2. O Lord, No Devotion? (Ain't No Heaven = Heaven) (5:37)
    Revolting Cocks - No Devotion
    Champion - No Heaven

  3. The Angel Divine (5:17)
    Massive Attack - Angel
    Yello - The Rhythm Divine
    Art of Noise - The Vacuum Divine
    Art of Noise - What Have You Done With My Body, God?

  4. Arrivée (2:45)
    Peter Gabriel - Passion
    Wooloomooloo - Jean Michel Jarre
    Sarah Brightman - Gothica

  5. Fleurs Soutenues du Mal (4:50)
    Sarah Brightman - Fleurs du Mal
    Laurie Anderson - Born, Never Asked
    Alan Parsons Project - The Fall of the House of Usher: ii Arrival

  6. Haven't We Met Your Soul Before (2:54)
    Peter Gabriel - Stigmata
    Timo Maas - Haven't We Met Before
    Massive Attack - What Your Soul Sings
    Ministry & Co Conspirators - Willie Stigmata
    Marianne Faithfull - Working Class Hero

  7. Working Class Stigmata (2:48)
    Ministry & Co Conspirators - Willie Stigmata
    Marianne Faithfull - Working Class Hero

  8. God's on the Horn... again (1:22)
    OMD - Dazzle Ships
    Peter Gabriel - Disturbed
    Timo Maas - Enter My World

  9. Sowing the Hopes and Prayers of God (3:44)
    Timo Maas - Enter My World
    Peter Gabriel - Of These, Hope
    Champion - The Plow
    Massive Attack - A Prayer for England
    OMD - Dazzle Ships
    Peter Gabriel - Disturbed

  10. You and Me, Eternally (5:57)
    Skinny Puppy - Haze
    OMD - 4-Neu

Total Running Time: 36:39
All song files are 192 kbps MP3 files.

Download album as a zip file (52.7 MB)

Cover Art - Front: Elements humbly borrowed from the "Tooth and Nail" movie poster and Peter Gabriel's "Passion - The Last Temptation of Christ" soundtrack album.

Cover Art - Back: Elements humbly borrowed from Peter Gabriel's "Passion - The Last Temptation of Christ" soundtrack album, plus original photo of a butterfly.

Sunday, July 6, 2008

The Angel Divine - Exclusive Ramdom Thoughts Release

It's been a while since I've posted anything here, again... But I've actually been working on that "grander idea" mashup I had mentioned in my last post. It's turned into a bit of an opus, as someone else has pointed out to me, and I'm making decently good progress. I should hopefully have it ready for release within the next couple of weeks.

In the meantime, DJ Useo from the Global DJ Network (of which I am an active member), approached me about providing a new mashup that would be released exclusively on the Ramdom Thoughts podcast, episode #111 on July 5, 2008. He was kindly producing a guest show for the podcast because dateable Scotty has been busy with his studies lately.

DJ Useo had given me fairly short notice, and I was currently in the middle of working on my opus. So instead of scrambling to produce a new mashup in a really short time, I thought I'd extract an excerpt from my opus, turn it into a single, and have that released exclusively on the Ramdom Thoughts podcast, as well as give you a little teaser of what's to be expected in the upcoming opus.

Here's the details for the mashup, and a link to the Ramdom Thoughts post where you can download the podcast as an MP3 or Ogg Vorbis file, or subscribe to the iTunes podcast...

The Angel Divine
Massive Attack - Angel
Yello - The Rhythm Divine
Art of Noise - The Vacuum Divine
Art of Noise - excerpt from "And What Have You Done With My Body, God?"
5:57 / 192 kbps / 8.3 MB

Available at Ramdom Thoughts #111 - mashups & remixes

Now available via direct download here, or for your listening convenience, try the divShare song player...