I made a mix about a year ago, for another blog. They never ended up publishing the mix, not sure why, maybe cause its not really traditional Merck material. Its more so on the organic ambient front, starts off in guitar territory, then halfway through transitions into piano stuff. Nonetheless, can’t let it go to waste, especially as this spring approaches. So here it is.
DJ Merck – Spring Evenings Mix
The World On Higher Downs
In honor of Travis mini-touring with Squarepusher this October in Europe, and because I’ve been in an IDM mood this week. Here are a few of my favorite Squarepusher tracks from over the years, in chronological order of release.
Title (Release) Year:
Theme from Ernest Borgnine (Feed Me Weird Things) 1996
Port Rhombus (Port Rhombus EP) 1996
Theme From Goodbye Renaldo (Squarepusher Plays…) 1996
A Journey To Reedham [7am Mix] (Big Loada) 1997
Beep Street (Hard Normal Daddy) 1997
Eviscerate [Version] (Burningn’n Tree) 1997
Chaos A.D. – Psultan [Squarepusher Mix] (Chaos A.D. Remixes) 1998
Iambic 5 Poetry (Budakhan Mindphone) 1999
I Wish You Could Talk (Go Plastic) 2001
Do You Know Squarepusher (Do You Know Squarepusher) 2002
Iambic 9 Poetry (Ultravisitor) 2004
As a special bonus, a friend of mine from Toronto many years ago, gave me this excellent remix that someone did of Squarepusher. I have no idea who did it, but I love it. Its mostly elements of Port Rhombus, but its got a few bonus tidbits as well. Enjoy!
Just wanted to send a little shout out, to what I consider a sister label to the early Merck material, Inpuj. Started by Proswell in 1998, and now managed by him and Aaron of Ilkae. They’ve done some really cool things over the course of the label, in what I would best simplify as, more experimental versions of the early Merck sound. Recently they’ve had some good releases, wanted to mention 2 off the bat below, plus theres a few good albums in the IDM vein from people like Ilkae (EIS001) and Kaneel (EIS004), so I encourage you to browse through their other releases if you are so inclined (they’re all basically free too!). They’ve also been collaborating on the artwork side with an awesome dude, Nate Reeves / NKurence, and hes done some really gorgeous stuff for them on the visual side as well (he blessed the final CD on Narita as well, Terminal).
Zan Zan Zawa Veia has an excellent chiptune release that you should definitely check out if thats your thing (I know chiptune stuff is very polarizing, most people either love or hate it), but its really well done. The fact its co-produced by Proswell, Ilkae, and Shawnphase/TSS should give you a clue.
Travis also has recently done a release for them, under his lesser known _-_m-e-ek alias. Its some nice, if slightly stunted, ambient work, reminiscent of Pop Ambient kind of stuff on Kompakt. Great stuff for a sunny summer afternoon out on the deck with a beer relaxing.
As Blamstrain/Juho was nice enough to point out to the world on the Discogs page for the Squadron compilation CD, the mastering on the release wasn’t one of our best moments. I do agree that some of the tracks really didn’t shine as much after being tweaked (though there were a few that were definitely helped).
The cd was mastered by someone who wasn’t that experienced yet. Plus the CD was already at a disadvantage, because at that time (the beginnings of DSL), there wasn’t much bandwidth to go around, and the CD had artists from all over the world (most of which were just young guys making cool new sounds with software they had stolen off the internet, and really had no idea how audio was supposed to be mastered), so I accepted whatever format of master file artists wanted to send (CD, wav file, or MP3 of their choice). I think most of the submissions ended up being 256-320 MP3s.
That all said, since the disc has been out of print now for years, I’ve decided to go ahead and share the original Pre-master versions of the tracks here for the followers on this blog to check out, and at the very least just for you guys to reminisce on the compilation that started it all.
P.S. I guess I had forgotten, but I got a good laugh being reminded by the Discogs page, that every disc says “Gabe” in the matrix ring (center silver under the disc).
P.S.S. If you look in the bottom right corner of the cover, there is a distorted side view of a head with red hair looking to the left, thats me (browsing records at Steve Castro/Pl3x/Beta Bodega’s pop up record store in 1999).
A little gift for you all. Here is a digital version of ‘the other’ remix that Secede did of Machinedrum for the Half The Battle CD. It didn’t appear on the original Merck CD release, but it did appear on the Japanese version of the release, as well as the Half The Battle 2 12″, and in a little video that got put together of some live show footage from NYC (yes, thats Brothomstates, Jimmy Edgar, and Machinedrum playing a *collaboration* live set at the end of the vid. Sick). Heres a VBR mp3 to download, and a view of the video as well.
A mid-winter link & recommendation for everyone of some mixes done by Voda aka Jody aka The Brighton/Hove Body Bagger. Friend of mine from the south of England, long time Merck fan, and all around good guy. These were 2 mixes he did in late 2010, with a near perfect track selection profile of stuff straddling the post-dubstep & post-idm genres (I prefer those genre tags over the generic “bass music”). Been playing them a lot throughout 2011, think you all will dig them if you enjoy the idea of the convergence of classic Autechre with the Exit Records sound. And here is to hoping he puts together a few mixes this year for us of some of the gems he collected throughout 2011 (nudge nudge).
Some links to download them and check the tracklists:
I think this is the only vinyl track we released, that was titled the same as the CD version of the track, but the audio was actually different. I believe it came about because in the time between the release of the Squadron CD, and the first vinyl, Lassi had remixed the track, and it had blown us all the hell away. So it was a no-brainer to follow in the lead of the late 90′s IDM labels and put a little secret gem on the vinyl for the fans.
So proud this track was on the first vinyl we released, still blows me away to this day. Put the lights low and the volume high, and lay back and close your eyes. Mmmmmmm.
Here is the digital version for all of you without record players to enjoy. If you do have a record player though, pick up a copy, cause I still got a box of em in my garage.
Was going through my VHS collection today, debating about ripping some, then selling them off. Luckily found rips of all of them through various avenues on the internet. Figured i’d share my search work here below. So you know though, you can also find all of these cut into sections and available on Youtube as well, for those of you that don’t want to waste hard drive space. Also keep in mind on the Megaupload stuff, that without an account you can only have 1 active download at a time. So just open up all of the parts (to kill the countdowns), then download them one after another when each one completes.
Here is a quick 30 minute mix I made recently. I was attempting to test out DJing in Ableton, and putting together some sample tracks from Extrawelt to use for it, but then decided to add a little more content and output a finished mix. Smart, but dancey, melodic techno for summer nights.