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tom moody

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Highly recommended: MEQ AND THE URS, four songs performed entirely on the Sidstation synthesizer, using its unique wavetable features to write sequences (as opposed to overdubbing separately played parts, which is the lazy way out around here). The Sidstation is modern hardware incorporating the much-geek-fetishized SID (sound-producing) chip from '80s Commodore computers, and while this page has complained repeatedly about a lack of substantive musical content in the so-called "gameboy scene" hyped by Malcolm McLaren as the new whatever, I'm pleased to report that the MEQ songs are dark, soulful, trancy little numbers with clever compositional hooks and surprising transpositions, working within the cheesy video game limitations of the chip while reveling in its sensuous sawtooth sonorities. I finally got the .sid-song player working on my Sidstation so have been listening to some of the '80s game stuff but prefer what MEQ is doing, which is exploiting the capabilities of a smart present-day instrument built around a success story of the early era of home computing. The point is not to be stuck forever in the '80s but to pursue hybrids between the overlooked or still perfectly good old and the ingeniously programmed and collectively vetted new. "A Tale About Reactivation" and "Union Bob" especially shine.

More on this thread. Jotsif explains it's two Sidstations (using wavetables) playing side by side in real time, sequenced from the Monomachine (another synth made by Elektron, the same Swedish company that created the Sid).

- tom moody 6-03-2005 7:15 am [link]