dublab has teamed up with the music pioneers at Roland to present Roland Radio. This monthly webcast explores Roland’s rich legacy of electronic musical instruments and showcases their newest wave of equipment. Tune-in for live performances, DJ sets, insightful interviews and more as we survey the impact of these innovative, sonic tools.
Apr 21, 2014
Pharaohs is a left field dance ensemble from Los Angeles consisting of Sam Cooper, Alejandro Cohen, D. Herrera (Suzanne Kraft), Stellar Rahim and Andres Renteria. While the group's 2008 debut on Living Tapes exhibits a decisively experimental sound, follow up releases on seminal dance labels 100% Silk and ESP Institute added allusions to pop music. Such dance floor friendly elements opened the group to a new audience, while maintaining a signature layered rhythms and dark toned synths. Pharaohs holds a live presence unique for the producer-centric world of dance music, consisting of drum machines, sax, percussions, and a wall of synthesizers. Following 2014's Manhunter, released on Intercoastal Artists, the group will continue to tour the US and have begun work on a new LP.
Mar 17, 2014
At the end of October 2011 Indra, Mikko and myself had packed up our house in Madison, Wisconsin, most of it’s contents locked in a shipping container westbound towards Los Angeles, California what remained was a portion of our studio gear which filled our van literally to the last nook. We were preparing to record in the Greenpoint neighborhood in Brooklyn New York at Mexican Summer’s Studio known to some as Gary’s Electric a beautiful building with exposed wood beams 20 foot tall ceilings and an incredible vibe, it really was totally electric.
We went in to record with a bunch of rough demos, very loosely structured rhythms essentially. Of course it all went out the door once we got in to the studio and realized we had a good amount of things to play with we essentially brought our studio with us to Greenpoint, at least key elements, and with help from Al Carlson we were able to have full studio access, something really fun, a way we had never approached recording but were excited to try, maybe a little over ambitious, but nonetheless keeping in touch with how we always role we went in an just experimented for three weeks. Inspired by having our son, the crazy journey we had just embarked on that would last 4 months, with recording for a month in Greenpoint, traveling to Europe, and moving back to the west coast, it felt like a new dawn, I can’t help but think that somewhat inspired LUCIFER.
Mikko was born 6 months prior to our excursion Indra and I (and Mikko in utero) had been preparing a framework for what’s now the completed works of LUCIFER since Indra was pregnant. After Mikko was born we continued to write and practice with him in tow and conceive new directions with similar flavor. A new dawn was with us the incredible learning experience of creating the most incredible thing we will ever make. Pure magic! We planned for a home birth and I was the first person Mikko ever met I caught him the second he felt air on his skin and looked into his eyes, and forever all three of our worlds were changed.
At that point something very real happened time stopped, and began to move so fast at the same time. The cycle of life came to light with the birth of Mikko, we experienced the beginning of the real, the ethyr descending into the plane of physical, big bang/little bang a complete cycle of life and death a climax awaiting another climax. It was such an ultimate experience, a dawning of a new day. It’s brought us light, laughter, new knowledge, pure experience and pure love.
All of our record titles have come to us in dreams, daydreams and epiphanies, like a force attracted to each other for no rhyme or reason just pure feeling. LUCIFER sat so strong with us. It means Venus, bearer of light and is the first sign of the sunrise. There are some major astrological and astronomical events involving Venus this year of 2012 one being the alignment of Jupiter and Venus which you may have already noticed in the night skies and the other being Venus passing in front of the Sun so it looks like a little freckle on the Suns face. Though these are important, our discoveries of these events were made after settling with the title. Like most dreams this magic is not to be feared but embraced.
The songs on LUCIFER, by most people that have heard them, so far conjour a night time version of previous works, music to soundtrack the moonrise to the sunrise. To Indra and I, though there are similarities to earlier recordings, this stands on its own its changed us, or maybe we were already changed when we wrote it and it is that cathartic release. There was a new approach to recording our rhythms and we were able to see thru many more influences. To us this record is about play and playfulness, unconditional love, rhythms and pulses, creation and vibration we are really happy to share these recordings!
Feb 17, 2014
California native Ramona Gonzalez first began her transcendent minimalist dance-pop escapades in the privacy of her own home in Los Angeles. With the aid of her multitrack cassette recorder and whatever keyboards, drum machines, and other instruments that were available to her, she very quickly developed her own unique sound and began performing live in the L.A. area under the moniker Nite Jewel.
Later teaming up with Cole M. Greif-Neill (formerly of Ariel Pink’s Haunted Graffiti), the Nite Jewel act became four piece live act, touring alongside the likes of Little Dragon, DaM FunK, and James Blake. The Nite Jewel sound has been likened to that of a warped, lo-fi version of Late-80’s Freestyle Electro sensation Debbie Deb and has also found appeal among not just the ‘indie rock’ & ‘experimental’ crowd but also among avid listeners of hip hop, funk, disco, & soul. While very fond of these aforementioned genres and artists, Nite Jewel gathers much of her inspiration from the likes of L.A. Free Music Society’s experimentalist Tom Recchion, obscure UK new age electro-acoustic duo Woo, and the sublime ambient electronic music of groups like Germany’s Cluster and Italy’s Sensations Fix. Nite Jewel never hesitates, however, to cite 90’s R&B pop groups such as TLC & SWV as influences who left an indelible mark on her music sensibilities as a teenager.
In 2009, Nite Jewel self-released her debut album Good Evening, recorded with the assistance of longtime collaborator Cole M. Greif-Neill. Good Evening was met with critical acclaim and was taste-making record store Other Music’s fourth top-seller of 2009.
In summer of 2010, Nite Jewel received critical acclaim for a remix of Caribou’s “Odessa” and of “Die Slow” by noise rock band HEALTH.
In August 2010, Nite Jewel released a six song EP in August 2010 entitled Am I Real?, in collaboration with Cole M. Greif-Neill and Daniel and Andrew Aged from Teen Inc..
Nite Jewel signed to Secretly Canadian in June 2011.
Nite Jewel is currently collaborating with DaM-FunK, among others, and working on her second album set for release in the winter of 2012.
Over the past few years, LA’s Nite Jewel has honed its pop-funk craft across releases from Italians Do It Better, Mexican Summer and LA’s own Gloriette Records. In that time, her airy but often distant voice has found new gravitas and charisma. Meanwhile, the synth lines have gotten more agile and the bass pops tighter and tighter. The stuttered 80s synth R&B melodies unfold into one another here in ways both giddy and deceivingly nonchalant. This maturation and evolution will all come to a head in early 2012 when Secretly Canadian will release Nite Jewel’s proper full-length follow up to her brilliant 2008 LP, Good Evening.
Jan 20, 2014
Known as Los Angeles' "Ambassador of Boogie Funk," Dam-Funk represents the citizens of the Funkmosphere. Headquartered in the Leimert Park section of L.A., Dãm (pronounced: 'Dame' as in Damon) spent the last few years cultivating a musical renaissance rooted in the early-'80s styles known as Boogie, Modern Soul and Electro-Funk.
As a DJ/selector, Dãm attracts the most discerning Boogie Funk afficionados within driving distance of his storied Monday-night Funkmosphere parties. But it's not just collectors at the bar toasting to the melodic sounds. Anyone who grooves to the likes of Slave, Aurra, early Prince, Prelude Records and the like, will get a dose of those groups' unknown contemporaries – more obscure but equally Funk-worthy.
Dec 16, 2013
Ras G guides a deep space exploration of music’s ancient history and rich future. Working thru obsolete tools to reach back in time and pluck out the essence of groove, Ras G's music is rich with space-funktified rhythms, fog horns, natty chattin, subterranean bass lines, colossal percussion and glorious highs.
Ras G has been a fixture on the underground hiphop scene in Los Angeles since the early 90s. He is a proud South Central LA resident. Ras along with Black Monk and Ron Stivers are the founders of the Poo-Bah Label.
This is the music that people will be playing in the ghettos of Mars in the year 3014.
Dec 16, 2013
Gabriel Reyes-Whittaker is the principal composer, producer and director of GIFTED & BLESSED. He is most widely known for his work using the pseudonym GB. Though his music ranges widely stylistically, he classifies his work under the umbrella term technoindigenous studies, the integration of the technological with the spiritual and ancestral. GB is an enthusiast of analog electronic musical instruments and MIDI composition.
Nov 18, 2013
Daedelus has dedicated his career to the war against cliché. Like his mythological namesake, Alfred Darlington is an inventor, a craftsman, a constructor of labyrinths. Others get trapped in the maze; he knows how to build wings.
Over the last twelve years, the LA producer has dropped two-dozen full-lengths and EPs. Each is a bespoke cut, tailored from an array of colors and textures. Pick a genre, any genre: juke, hip-hop, bossa nova, rave, classical, psychedelic, drum-and-bass, glitch, etc. If there’s a beat, Daedelus has likely freaked it.
When the world strictly knew the “Low End Theory” as A Tribe Called Quest record, Daedelus helped supply the bedrock for the LA beat scene. His 2008 “Live at Low End Theory” remains a defining document of the most influential American club night of the last decade.
The record also highlights his agility and innovation as a live artist. Onstage, Daedelus transforms into a sorcerer. His shows are a glowing carnival of monomes, Victorian garb, and dance, often magnified by a mechanized backdrop of moving mirrors entitled “Archimedes,” his own rendition of EDM’s audio-visual spectacle. Ostensibly incompatible sounds are mixed into something novel and extraordinary. All improvisation everything.
Daedelus has collaborated with the likes of MF Doom, Flying Lotus, Madlib and myriad others. He’s released records for beat music’s most respected imprints, including Ninja Tune, Brainfeeder, and his own Magical Properties. Despite this eclecticism, the LA Times pointed out that he “forged a singular aesthetic back when break beats and B-Boy poses still ruled the Los Angeles underground.”
He strikes a balance between the direct and the obtuse that can’t be articulated in words. This is part of the subtext for “Drown Out,” Daedelus’ most elegiac album. His debut for Anticon is a heart-on-sleeve meditation devoted to loss, coded language, and the maddening failures of communication. And yet you can still bob your head to it.
Consider it another invention in an always-expanding workshop. Permanent flight. No delays or clichés
Oct 21, 2013
The Egyptian Lover has been bringing you that sound you have enjoyed for 30 years. Some call it Electro, some call it Hip Hop, some call it Old School, some call it Rap, but he calls it “Dance Music.” Egyptian Lover makes music to make you dance.
He started out as a DJ in 1978-79 and became the headlining DJ for Uncle Jam’s Army in 1982. He has been in the music business all his life. His first time in the studio he recorded the “Breakin’ & Entering” soundtrack. A true “Electro” recording and the first of its kind.
Getting his style from Kraftwerk and enjoying the 808 drum machine, programming it like a mad man, he loved beats and no one was making beats back then. You could only get a (bonus beat) at the end of a song on a 12" single. So He made his own. After that, he went into the studio with Uncle Jam’s Army and recorded “Yes, Yes, Yes” with beats that sound like that “Breakin’ & Entering” soundtrack and “Dial-a-Freak” one of his all time favorites.
The Egyptian Lover wrote all the lyrics, he said, “It was easy.” Because he was making rap tapes for people at his High School (James Monroe in the San Fernando Valley) he was doing pretty good for himself as he was selling many many tapes. The Egyptian Lover became a local celebrity.
When asked about his experiences he stated, “It was so much fun in the studio I had to go back and record some more. I booked the studio time and grabbed my notebook of raps and went to the studio to record my solo project ‘Beast Beats.’ My mother and sister read the title of my song and said, ‘You better not make that song, Don’t play with the Devil.’ So I went to the studio and changed my mind and programmed the beat to ‘Egypt Egypt.’”
He did not think this song was going to be a big hit, he had just wanted a song to play at the dances when he was DJing. He wanted a song that said his name in it (he admits, “I was kinda vain.”).
The Egyptian Lover continued to explain what happened when he started making the beat for Egypt Egypt,“I did the music the way I had mixed other music, arranged the song like a mega mix of all the songs I had mixed at the dances and took out my notebook of raps and put together a song. It was all pieces that was mixed together. When the song was completed…I took the tape to KDAY and they loved it.”
After this initial success he was spurred on and went back to the studio and recorded “And My Beat Goes Boom,” “What is a D.J. if He Can’t Scratch?” and “The Ultimate Scratch.”
When prompted to let us know what changes this brought to his life he continued, “I did not know what I was in for. I started doing concerts and having more fun than I ever dreamed. I have been all across the states and thanks to my fans, all over the World, I am still doing shows and keeping the party HOT!!! I love my job. Thank you!”