Kebu – Michael’s Anthem

Using analog synths and drum machines almost exclusively, Finnish artist Kebu makes old school electronica  in the vein of Jean Michel Jarre, Mike Oldfield and Vangelis (you know, from a time when popular electronic music actually had melodies). The result is great sounding music that will hopefully not only appeal to long term synth enthusiasts like myself but also  younger people whose electronic music references growing up may be entirely different.

I’ve heard a good few artists over the years try to recreate this particular type of electronic music. I’ve even tried it myself at times. Kebu, however, does it well. Not only can you hear that the music is put together by a real craftsman, but like the above-mentioned masters of the past Kebu also has the ability to come up with memorable, engaging melodies that you want to hear again. Just listen to this track, entitled Michael’s Anthem and taken from his debut album To Jupiter and Back, for an example of that:

You can learn more about Kebu and his music at his website kebu.fi, and purchase To Jupiter and Back on Inverse.fi, Itunes. or any of the stores listed on his site. You can also check out more of his videos on his YouTube Channel.

How YOU Can Help Shutterdown Produce Their “Dreamwalker” Album

Shutterdown is a  synth based band from Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania who are hoping to produce their first album this year, which will be titled Dreamwalker. And for that they need your help.
Making a great sounding album can be a costly affair, and for that reason Shutterdown currently have an Indiegogo campaign going, where they’re trying to raise $5,000 to help fund the project. Right now they’re about forty percent there, with the campaign ending in only 25 days. So head over to their campaign page at Indiegogo and help them fund the album – there’s some real goodies waiting for anyone who contributes that you don’t want to miss out on, so don’t wait!

Want a taste of what they sound like first? Sure. Listen to this, and you may very well see why I think a Shutterdown album this year is a very good idea:


A quick bio from Shutterdown’s website: Based in Pittsburgh, PA, Shutterdown began in 2009 as a duo consisting of Max and Ant’isa.  Brought together by a mutual friend, the multifaceted Chris Maverick, both had been a part of numerous projects in the past, ranging from punk to indie pop, prog-rock to ambient.  The pair released a 4-song, self-titled EP in October 2010.

Mystery is at the heart of Shutterdown. Ghostly images glimpsed between the beats. There’s an echo. The sound decays on each repetition — not just quieter, but duller, distorted. A trajectory, which if traced backward in time, points to something fuller, brighter, more perfect than the original. An unattainable ideal.

Imperfection plays an important role in the band’s aesthetic: distortions of sound; noises that traditionally would be removed from, not added to, recordings; occasional frailty in the voice. It’s an admission of limitation, a representation of the human condition.

There are ghosts all over the place. Echoes without an original, sounds existing on the threshold of perception. Sounds whose origins are elusive. Ghosts built of other ghosts. These contrast, emerging between beats – sometimes loud, clear and present.

Shutterdown is currently writing and recording its first full-length album, with an estimated release date late-2012.

 

Still here? Go to their damn campaign already!

Check This Out: Sebastian Arnold – Driving a Spaceship

I love making new discoveries in music, and sometimes I just know within seconds of hearing a new piece that it’s happened again. Driving a Spaceship by Berlin based electronic musician and “mad scientist drummer” Sebastian Arnold was an instant hit with me, and I knew I was a Sebastian Arnold fan long before the six minute track had ended. This stuff is right down my alley, and the track was basically put on repeat right away.

Driving a Spaceship is taken from Arnold’s new album Interstellar Getaway, which you can purchase on Itunes. Visit Sebastian Arnold’s site for more info. You can also follow Sebastian Arnold on Twitter.

Gear spotters: In this performance, which was recorded at ANTJE ØKLESUND Audiovisual Laboratory Berlin, Sebastian Arnold uses his trusty Nord Modular G2 and NordRack 2X synths, a Korg Kaoss Pad Mini, drum triggers and an Alesis Control Pad. Cymbals are Ufip Traditional 14″ HiHat, Spizzichino 18″ Medium with Rivets, Bosphorus 24″ Ride, Brady 14″ Snare, WAHAN drumkit with 22″ bassdrum, 16″ floortom.

Interestingly, he apparently manages to not play to a click here, by gluing the notes to the kick trigger. Perhaps that’s something that helps him get that great groove? In any case, this is not the last time you hear of Sebastian Arnold on this site, that much I know.