Wednesday, January 19, 2011
Set 33 Progress
Recording a DJ set is like breaking a stallion. It fights, it kicks, it resists, and then it rides like the wind. By the time you hear Set 33 in its final form it should be a disciplined racehorse (but no doubt some wild spirit will remain).
It will likely be about as epic as Set 32 (I recently posted that one to Soundcloud if you missed it the first time around). However, I am hoping that even tighter transitions and crazier amounts of overlap will make for a shorter set while also showcasing more tunes.
I posted a teaser flyer on this page. Yesterday my laptop crashed while I was working on the design for the final flyer in Photoshop, and then it crashed again an hour later while I was recording. The laptop seems OK now. I have been backing up my work regularly on a terabyte external hard drive, which provides a great deal of comfort in light of such woes.
Anyway, after losing an hour of recording time fussing with the unruly laptop, I got back into things--only to become frustrated that one of the tunes was just not working out. I showed it the door. Unfortunately, losing that song also meant losing some much needed momentum, and it also messed up the flow of the set. This disappointing evening/night of work concluded with me failing (after a very long and arduous hour) to get a particular transition to work.
I woke today at 5:30 AM and began thinking about other transition tunes. My particular trouble spot was a disco strings song, so I thought to myself, "Well, I just need to find a few other disco strings songs that are around 138 BPM." I came up with some good ideas, and these proved so tempting that I climbed out of bed at 6:30 AM and tried them out.
They worked beautifully. The set's momentum was actually improved and the flow was salvaged. We usually say "two steps forward, one step back"; but in the bipolar heat of recording a DJ set it feels more often like ten steps back, twenty steps forward.
So what does it sound like? Well, just as one might be reasonably successful predicting tomorrow's weather by guessing that it will probably be much like today's, yes, Set 33 features more of the same multi-national, multi-era, multi-genre spirit "EorE?" visitors are accustomed to, with the usual emotional gamut running from the deeply dumb to the oddly affecting. This is the first set I have mixed using my Pioneer CDJ turntables (after years of working with Numarks), and these have been wonderful tools (I have gotten over my earlier lament about their inability to work with extremely large thumb drives).
The set begins with some quirky "forgotten" classics from the late 80s, showcases some 90s classics alongside newer tunes, and then gallops full-throttle into the newer trash stuff. Finale is a battlefield of beats, with drum 'n' bass slugging it out with various other genres. Who will be left standing? And what will be left of them? :-D