Author Archives: Roy

WGT 2019

With late Easter we also had a late Whitsun and thus a late WGT this year. Having booked a year in advance we had our usual apartment arriving on Thursday. Even more warm-up parties this year and again something that I wanted to see, so this day of driving, picking up ribbons and getting to the concert made quite a busy day again. Next year we are going again a day earlier.

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R.I.P. Keith Flint

When someone famous dies, everybody suddenly is a fan and people start to dig up memories. Let me chime in for the colorful face of The Prodigy.

In 1992 the debut album “The Prodigy Experience” was released. My younger brother already knew the band. I guess “Charlie” or “Out Of Space” had been released as singles before the full-length album. He has this massive “The Prodigy Experience” poster which stuck on the wall of our shared room.

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Spiritual equality

Nowadays it is thought that truth may be gained through discussion, and it seems natural that the pupil may put himself on a level with his master, arguing with him. With the prejudice of equality, and with its derivations: freedom, human rights, sovereign people, compulsory
fraternity, economic utopias, etc. etc., every principle of authority has been undermined, every spiritual and intellectual superiority has been trivialised, hierarchy unknown or reversed, and deference and reverence to a master have vanished.

Arturo Reghini

From the book Occultism and Traditionalism

Bad film period

There seem to be some problems at my usual film dealer. They remain silent and they do not send films as often as they should. A little reorganization I think and I hope this ‘thin period’ will prove to be short. In the meantime I have to find another way to find films. There is this second hand shop downtown that also has DVDs. Like in the old days of video rental shops, I go through the racks not seeing any title from my wishlist, so I have to pick films from the meager supply based on what is printed on the boxes. That does not turn out too well and there you have explained the corny films that I review recently.

Hopefully the period will remain short!

2018 Music praise

Last year I reviewed eight releases that I rated four or higher, seven of them were released in 2018. One release got a 4.5 out of 5, the rest 4 out of five:

2018 Movie praise

In 2018 I saw one film from the same year: Mortal Engines. It was alright, I rated it three out of five.

For the rest, I saw eight films in 2018 that I rated four out of five, none that I rated higher. Of some I have better memories than of others!
Here is the list:

Shirt show-off

Again, this is not really a “story”, but since I already have flyers, demos, 7″s and magazines galleries filed under “stories”, I will use it this time too. I will show off my shirt ‘collection’. They are not all music shirts, but since most of them are, I just put them together. It is but a part of the shirts that I have, but it would not be too interesting to see shirts that you can still just order, would it? I never meant to have a shirt collection, but over the years I got myself quite a few. Most of what you see here I never wear. They are no longer ‘represent’ the music that I listen to, the shirt is too big, too small, of too cheap material or I did use to wear them, but they start to wear.

Anyway, enjoy.

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Every Noise at Once

Replying to a very different question on Reddit, a person who appeared to work for Spotify kept referring to Every Noise. Not knowing what it is, I looked up the website. The name seems to be named “Every Noise at Once” and it is presented like a massive word-cloud with musical genres which is ‘clickable’. You can also use the search function. Once you get to a genre, you have the choice between different Spotify playlists: “playlist” (opens “the sound of <genre>”, “intro” (“introduction to <genre>”), “pulse” (“the pulse of”) and “edge” (“the edge of”). I have not yet found out what these “pulse” and “edge” playlists are supposed to be.

Because only ‘official’ Spotify playlists are presented, I had the idea that “Every Noise” is made by (or for) Spotify and it could give an idea of how Spotify connects different artists. The website is made a group called “The Echo Nest” though, who appear to develop software (or algorithms) for (personal) music comparison. Perhaps Spotify buys the technique that they use for their automated playlists and the like.

The website looks fairly corny. It has fixed width and height so you have to scroll if you use another resolution on your screen. It is (like I said) a word-cloud which starts with musical genres. The size of the text defines popularity. When you click on a genre name, music starts to play. When you click on the >> next to the genre name, a new page opens with artists that fall under this category. There you can choose the different Spotify playlists that unfortunately only open in the browser player. I do not immediately see the logic in the tag or artists cloud by the way.

So, would this be the reason that Spotify thinks that Genocide Organ and Death In June are comparative artists? Let us see. Looking for “Genocide Organ” results in the following genres: “power electronics, industrial, martial industrial, neofolk”. Right…
Death In June then: “martial industrial, neofolk, industrial, experimental, industrial rock, grave wave, dark wave, ethereal wave, dark post-punk, experimental”. Allllright…..
That makes three corresponding genres which are not too well tagged. But sure they will know about “noise” or “death industrial”, right? What do we get when we look for Brighter Death Now? Well: “power electronics, industrial, dark ambient, martial industrial”. At least BDN is not tagged “neofolk”, but the “martial industrial” tag eludes me. What exactly is tagged “martial industrial” anyway? Hmmmmm.

Ok, let us look to a bit more popular music. Kerridge, slow and dark techno music. The found categories are: “mandible, minimal dub, outsider house, dub techno”. I never heard of any of these terms, but the “mandible” playlists have nothing that sounds anything like Kerridge, neither do these other genres. Sure, much is also weird techno, but these genres entirely disregard the atmosphere of the music. Listening to such a playlist is like listening to “dark ambient” and suddenly be presented by a project like IRM (which is here only tagged “power electronics” by the way).

Assjack then, the strange Americana and metal band of Hank Williams III: “sludge metal, groove metal, stoner metal, stoner rock, gothic americana, cowpunk, doom metal, alternative metal, deathgrass, psychobilly”. I would have expected something like “outlaw country” here, but only “cowpunk” and “deathgrass” seem to apply to a certain degree, but if that is the case Assjack sounds just like what Hank releases under his own name (so: not metal). How does that help to find a similar artist?

So what to make “Every Noise”? They themselves claim to have over 2400 genres listed so far and the list is growing. There bound to be many that you do not know and there appears to be automatically generated playlists on Spotify for every genre, so indeed, Every Noise could be a way to find new music.
What annoys me a bit is that the interpretation of genres differs from ‘the usual’ (or perhaps more safely: my own). I listened to playlists with “deep filthstep”, “darkstep”, “minimal dubstep” and the like, they they all result in happy sounding, uptempo “drum & bass” like music, while I would expect slow and more gritty music.
And when Manu le Malin or Hellfish are “speedcore”, Thorofon is tagged with nothing but “power electronics”, Wumpscut and PAL are tagged “power noise” (there is nothing like “rhythmic noise” it seems) and the website even manages to connect Wumpscut to Corvus Corax and Goethes Erben, it will be hard to find the fringes of genres that you already know.

And all that while has been quite (but of course not perfectly) able to connect artists based on user-assigned-tags, why are people trying to connect artists to try to define genres and come up with terms that even listeners do not understand?

A nice attempt to classify music, but far, far from perfect.