- forward thinking electronic dance music. forward thinking electronic dance music. Sun, 17 Aug 2014 15:51:00 +0000 en-US hourly 1 Time to get out Mon, 12 May 2014 16:48:57 +0000

It’s that time of the year again when the flowers start pushing their leaves right aside the dog poo that’s uncovered from under the snow. I’ve said it before in different videos: leave your studio, it’s healthy. One way to still continue the studio-geekery outside is the good ol’ pretentious ‘field recording’. I have for long recorded all my stuff with Zoom H2 and it has served me well but there are certain issues. Yes it’s lightweight and small but the plastic casing is prone to all sorts of handling noises and rumble. Zoom’s latest model H6 seems extremely sturdy and I really love the idea of interchangeable mics so I just had to give it a go. With a little help of the friendly people at Studiotec I got my hands on a unit and decided to throw in a little challenge. I wanted to go out and record all sorts of random stuff and build a track completely made out of those sounds, which I did. I recorded all sorts of stuff ranging from ambiences to drumming and kicking various items in- and outdoors such as construction equipment, monuments, buildings, people and animals (no not really). My intention was not to record any kinds of instruments whatsoever but the end bit needed something so I just had to add a little Otamatone solo in there. Then again it’s freakin’ Otamatone of all instruments so I can live with that. I’m also challenging you to play that lil’ bugger with a fractured wrist and a cast. It adds a little pain and agony in the delicate emotional interpretation of the solo. At least by keeping it painfully out of tune.

Sibelius Monument

Anyway, the final result ended up using quite a hefty bass drone recorded from inside of Sibelius Monument, which is.. well.. a monument (duh) in Helsinki built from large welded steel pipes. When a wind blows past the monument, the pipes make these weird droney sounds which have pretty impressive bass content. I definitely recommend sticking your head in there if you happen to walk past. You look really smart and you’re up for an interesting sonic experience. A satellite dish and an empty cargo container provided a nice bit of oomph and boom to the beats and the rest is various small and big stuff you can spot from the video. Yes, effects are used on the sounds (I think it’s pretty obvious listening to it) as I didn’t want to do a boring engineery test but to have fun and try out what I can do with the sounds I get. You can get the specs and the unboxing videos elsewhere, this is not for it.

Verdict on the recorder itself? It’s an absolutely gorgeous piece of gear. Compared to the H2 it completely removes the issue of handling noise as it’s built like a tank. A very small tank that is. The noise level is considerably lower and the details and dynamics are on a completely new level to what I’m used to with the H2. The interchangeable mics extend the use quite a bit as you have an M/S mic to capture spaces and ambience, good X/Y with width control and a shotgun to get quite surgical with if needed so the palette to work with is really versatile. The downside compared to for example H2 is that the unit is larger so it’s not the kind of recorder you slip in your pocket. I rarely do carry a recorder randomly with me so it’s not a big issue but for example a unit without the additional four inputs would be a killer. I’m not sure if I’m to use those too often. But what I do use is the option to plug the unit on a USB and record directly into DAW. Saves a lot of hassle.

All in all, I’m quite excited to head outside and keep recording with the H6. Listen to the track and judge for yourself.

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Foley me once Sun, 01 Sep 2013 12:17:45 +0000 If you get this, you are awesome. And old.

If you get this, you are awesome. And old.

Really sorry for the awkward pun. Few weeks back I did the Kesä/Summer jamieoliver barbecue video performance. In case you haven’t seen it, check it now and give a little focus on the intro. In case you saw it already and didn’t notice that none of the sounds in it are actually “real”, I can pat myself in the back. All the sounds are created afterwards, partially as recoded ‘foley’ and partially edited from sounds on As you might know, the microphones in the consumer (prosumer, whatever) cameras are not really that good for more than holiday videos as the they capture all kinds of unwanted noises from the camera itself, wind etc and the quality of the sound is not too good, so it wasn’t really usable for the video. I could have used a separate mic to get better results but I was doing the whole thing by myself so it would have been a bit tricky and the main focus is not on the intro anyway.

Creating the sound on the intro kind of snowballed as first I was supposed to just put some kind of a soundtrack or ambience on it, and ended up adding birds chirping to fit the summery vibe. That seemed to lack depth and dimension as the camera angle keeps changing so I started to play with phase and filtering to alter the position of the ambience and mimic the placement of a microphone. I ended up with this (also few other sounds already in place):

Better than static ambience, but still lacking something so I decided to head for to hunt for fitting thumps, clanks, car engine, fire crackling, barbecue sizzling and whatnot. After filtering and EQ’ing them in place I took a Zoom H2 and recorded the rest that I could not find adding few ambiences. The end result is rather decent but if you know what you’re listening to, you naturally spot quite a lot of stuff here and there. The car engine is actually two different sounds (running and turning off), the shirts sound like a thick cloth cape, the midi cable and the switches are loud as f*ck, but deliberately so. The birds were actually already nesting so they really don’t have to keep up the chirping to attract the ladies; they already ‘got some’ for this summer. The only original sound from the camera is actually the crumbling of the newspaper and placement of the wood in the grill.

But while assembling the sounds together I realized that foley is actually freakin’ awesome practice for sound design. It makes you analyze what components every sound comprises of beyond the obvious “inside is lowpass filter”-stuff. Sometimes the exaggerated and unnatural sounds support the scene and action better than sounds mimicking the original situation. Though at this point I have to emphasize the classic phrase I have no idea what i’m doing. It’s far from a masterpiece. I mean, I might not have done it by the book, I did it by the ear. And it was damn fun.

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BBQ and beats Fri, 09 Aug 2013 09:43:21 +0000 In case you haven’t been following the facebook page lately, you might have missed the following:

Recue – Kesä from recue on Vimeo.

“I just did a reeaally relaxing summer getaway to the countryside and took a little studio setup with me. It ended up being quite a productive trip and I’m glad to tell that the next Recue release is starting to take its form. I also made a little performance viddy for you and a summery track that you can download freely from my soundcloud.”

The initial response to the video has been really overwhelming and as I’ve been getting some questions on the anatomy of the set, I’d like to open up the process behind the video and the track a bit. Dunno if it “spoils the magic” to break it down and get into the techy stuff, but I know I personally enjoy reading stuff like that so what the hell.

The video is shot in Salo-Miehikkälä in the South-Eastern part of Finland, not too far from the Russian border, where I’ve spent many of my Summers as a kid. It’s a place with lots of personal memories so just going there is something to look forward to, let alone making music. Plus a bonus is, there’s no neighbors nearby so you can really crank it up and dance around naked if you want. Oh, did I mention I went alone? Going to the countryside and having a barbecue with your friends and family is another thing, but if you’re going to get creative, being completely alone takes it to another level, at least for me that is. Collaborations are of course another story and you can get different kind of feedback and inspiration from the communication but getting away from everybody else lets you suck into the creative process on a whole new level. Once you get the flow going, there no one to interrupt it. It’s only until you start to feel you need to sit back, have a breather and listen what you’ve done, you can go and light up the sauna or cook some food and crack open a cold beer. Perfect!

Part of the temporary setup inside the 100+ yo main house. Ascetic but cozy.

Part of the temporary setup inside the 100+ yo main house. Ascetic but cozy.

As a temporary studio I took a fairly small setup with me. Emphasis on the word ‘fairly’ as it wasn’t exactly Do Not Disturb this time. I recently got myself a Korg MS-20 Mini so I just had to pack that one with me. Along I took an Access Virus as it’s small but an extremely versatile synth and a Novation X-Station though actually only as a midi controller as it has a good sneeze of knobs and sliders. Oh yeah, and of course a Maschine for drums. Then I have a little Zoom H2 for recording all kinds of stuff: field recordings, percussions and whatnot (plus I stole a vocal mic from Jolea’s studio as it’s sturdy and small). Oh, and of course I also needed a pair of speakers to crank up, so that starts to add up to a bit more than your standard back pack mobile setup, and quite enough to do pretty much everything I need.

As for the video, it’s.. well.. a video born exactly on the moment, shot with a basic DSLR and few lenses (50mm and an ultra wide 10-20mm). I did it solely from the gut basing on the idea I had in my head and improvised as I went on. I wanted to put in some cheesy elements like a postcard view of Finnish countryside accompanied with accordeon and birds chirping, and then have a noisy dumbass from the city coming and ruining the peace. But mostly I just wanted to translate the whole relaxed and still standing atmosphere of the place. I actually shot quite a lot more material but edited it out as you can’t really have a 10 minute intro on a 2 minute track can you.. I’m glad I did as it actually ended up reflecting the laid back reality quite a lot better without all the cheeky ideas I had.

A shirt on a mic stand matches my physique perfectly.

A shirt on a mic stand matches my physique perfectly.

Shooting a video like that all by yourself is actually a bit tricky task as you have to set up the camera static, focus it somewhere, do your stuff, run back to the camera and hope you did it in the right place. So I ended up running back and forth quite a lot. At some point I started doing all kinds of dummies for focusing and then replacing it with myself. Luckily I’m not a big fan of filming myself so it’s only the few shots changing the clothes.

As with the track itself, it’s really quite a spur of the moment. It’s just that simple synth line (that acts as the bass line on the track) that I start jamming stuff on top of. Performance-wise there’s nothing really tricky and demanding happening, but I guess it’s that with the laid back beat what keeps the easy going vibe on. With the X-Station I’m mostly controlling filters and effects lifting and drowning elements with the sliders and noodling little melodies and chord progressions on top of the main synth line. The Maschine is (besides providing the beats) acting in midi-mode triggering key elements and samples on Ableton. The samples used have actually more relevance than you first might think. They are sampled from a Finnish tango legend Reijo Taipale’s hit Satumaa. That is a classic that you might associate with Finnish countryside and Summer but Mr. Taipale is actually from the same village where the whole getaway place is. He still today, at the age of 73, rocks the stage every year at the local Midsummer festivities. I saw him few years back and he still did two full sets. So jungle kinda’ massiv’ swag BOH ressspect for him, innit.

Here he is in the swingin’ sixties rocking a striped sailor costume while an elderly, clearly seasick lady is having the feels for him. Or is about to throw up.

What can I say more. I’ve been trying to count how many inconsistencies can one edit in one short narrative. Quite many that is. The pants and the shoes are difficult I see.

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Bulking up Mon, 18 Mar 2013 22:35:55 +0000 DISCLAIMER – This is not a full unboxing review including comprehensive lab testing of the equipment making sure every clip is equally loud verified with detailed analysis of the waveforms. You can most likely spot lots of stuff that could have been done differently or just point out that this is pointless and/or  I am stupid and just ruined the audio. Well don’t. This is merely just initial thoughts based on the first tests I did by feeding musical material in and tweaking on the go. I did this as the unit seemed to raise interest on how it actually sounds, so the main point are the pre/post clips to give you some sort of general view on what can be achieved. You can most likely find a better fully featured review somewhere on the internet. That being said we can now move on to the good stuff.

TLA Fat Track

Boom. There you go. Beautiful piece of gear with those classic VU meters, two tube stages and a (really) nice EQ section. I don’t want to bore you by listing tech specs, you can read all about it HERE (and judging by the amount of people requesting pre/post clips, you already know all about it).

My main interest with tube gear is actually to harshly overdrive the tubes to get some nice fuzzy distortion out of it, but I was also interested how well some subtle warming up could be achieved on digital material. Instead of just running sine wave through it and comparing the output, I wanted to test the unit with some musical material so I made a quick clip which starts just with a beat to hear how the unit handles the transients, then a bassline is added to hear how the lows can be beefed up. After that pads are slowly brought in to make the high end distortion characteristics more audible, then the beats are dropped off so I could test how a constant sound can be cranked up and lastly everything is on to test the possibilities on a complete master.

At first I routed the signal through one tube stage, line-in, EQ bypassed, not overdriving the signal. The tops of the transients are slightly chopped off as the drive light was occasionally slightly blinking but there’s nothing too audible so I stopped with just the drums, anxious to crank it..

As I mentioned my main interest was the tube drive, but a very pleasant surprise was actually the EQ section, especially on the low end. You can really dial up lots of lows and beef up the sound up to it being overpowering but still without it getting rumbly. The lows are really smooth and rounded. The highs can bring up some some noise from the tubes (or the source) if cranked up but on decent levels it is not too audible (NOTE! This unit has matched Telefunkens instead of the original ones so the character is most likely slightly different) Here goes, same as above but EQ section enabled, dialed up lows and highs, really mild dip on the mids (can’t remember the exact frequency, who cares). Subtle warming, slightly excessive on the lows.

Ok, time to push the tubes a bit. Same as above but now the tubes are slightly overdriven so you can hear the distortion characteristics. You can clearly start to hear the crunch here so might be smarter to use this on individual instruments/groups instead of master..

Ok, well… Subtle sh*t aside. Let’s crank it up and tweak the EQ to attenuate different parts (I dropped off the beats for a longer time as I was focusing on the EQ sweeps). Goes slightly from side to side as I’m adjusting L and R gains at the same time.

Good distortion or bad.. you be the judge. I personally enjoy what the overdriven tube combined with the EQ does to the pads and bass together. The sound of the overdriven tube doesn’t fit everywhere and as some people oddly seem to think, they are not magical devices that turn the sound into awesomeness just by adding them into your chain. The overdrive might sound a bit off on the previous examples as the material might not be suitable for it. But when put into the right context, it might be a different ball game. So I made this.

In case you want to hear how that sounds dry, here goes:

If that’s not enough tube for you, you can actually route the audio first through one stage of tubes and then from the balanced outs back in to the EQ section and another stage of tubes and then out from the direct outs. Both stages can be overdriven so you can get pretty extreme tones if you for example make the highs squeal with the EQ.. Warning, watch the volume with the following clip. Just a beat, basic sine bass, noise and a little synth to fill the whole spectrum. First dry, then cranked through two stages.

Well.. umm.. not so subtle anymore.

Now I probably should write some kind of a summary, right? I think the TLA Fat Track is a really solid unit if you’re looking for not just subtle tube warmth (works well for that too) but also a really tight EQ section to beef up the lows and a unit that can really crank up your tubes when needed. My five cents. Now go read a real review.

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Summing up the end of the world Fri, 28 Dec 2012 15:19:38 +0000 2012

Just wanted to drop a line or two about the past year and thank you all for the support. It’s been a surprisingly hectic year actually. I played a little set in a hotel room, built a live performance with Jolea, played a little in the US with her, did Priceless, did The Den, started my journey with Nueva Forma, remixed a little, showcased some live electronics crashing the setup mid-set, got caked, had a warm and welcoming reception on the RxJ set back home. All in all, this was actually a pretty damn fun year.

So what’s to come in 2013? The promised live related release with Jolea is on its way. Actually In the Attic #2 is just around the corner, we just need to sort few tech issues out. We’ll hopefully get to do the opposite side of the world than the US, fingers crossed. One ongoing development is that I’ve started to work on new Recue solo material again. Don’t want to make any schedule promises; the ground work has already been laid some time ago so the material is there. It will be a step to a more inward-looking sound, but more on that when the time is right. There will also be some more remixes coming out, one being for Kaiti Kink Ensemble’s officially-unofficial Under the Iron Sky soundtrack. More info will follow. I’ll also promise to try something new next year.

But for now, BIG thanks to everyone who were involved in any way on what made 2012 may it be coming to see a live show, organizing, inviting to play, shaking hands and having beers after a set or just listening to the music and sharing it. So here’s a little freebie to fetch for the end of the year. It’s a cover track we’ve played on just few RxJ sets and it will not be released anywhere ever. Go get it, hope you’ll like it and see you next year!

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Recue x Jolea Sat, 18 Aug 2012 17:16:11 +0000

As you might know I’ve worked every now and then with Jolea in the past. Her beautiful vocal work was included already in the first ever Recue release Between Stations back in 2006. The next proper feature track was ‘Morning Dew’ on Leftover Love but I’ve actually remixed and unscrupulously sampled her voice here and there uncredited as well… The recent live thingy I did with acapella vocs got me thinking that why not take it a notch further and try it with real vocals as I happen to know an amazing vocalist. I asked her, we gave it a shot, and as a result I’m more than happy to announce the following (official words from

Recue and Jolea are joining forces, packing their bags, and heading for live gigs together. The combined set brings together the best of both worlds: Jolea’s stellar vocals and reflective songwriting with Recue’s spacious sound design and detailed pounding beat work. The atmospheric otherwordly soundscapism and electroacoustic textures that are key elements to both of their work are there, but the result is more up paced with a bass heavy dancefloor emphasis. It’s an interesting mixture of eyesdown melodic electronica and plastered thumping beats drifting in and out of double/half stepped syncopation.

The premiere of the Recue x Jolea live set will be at Priceless Festival held on June 29th – July 2nd in Belden, California. The set will include both; remakes of their previous work and completely new material. Glimpses of the new material have already been surfaced around the internet. Different versions of a collaborative track called ‘We’re Not Like the Most’ have been featured for example on Kid Kameleon’s guest mix done for Tom Ravenscroft’s BBC6 show and Recue’s own acclaimed ‘Do Not Disturb’ live performance. Results of Recue’s and Jolea’s work together will be released later this year as an EP on Audiobaum, so needless to say, we’re more than excited!

We’ve been spending some time in the studio and things have started to roll. New material is coming together quite nicely so we’re actually really happy to share a little taster with you! This is an 808 driven dancefloorey version of a sluggish head-noddy original called “We’re Not Like the Most”. The download count is limited to 100 so if you want to get a copy, act fast! If you miss it, don’t worry; It will be properly released as a mastered HQ version as the whole release is finished and polished. But for now, hope you enjoy this one nevertheless.

The next chance to hear us live are the following but more dates are added as we go. Stay tuned in the social media.

Live Dates:
June 30th – Priceless Music Festival, Belden, CA
July 6th – The Den, San Fransisco, CA
August 31st – TBA, Bristol
September 1st – Ginglik, London
October 27th – MBar, Helsinki
November 3rd – Venue, Helsinki

For further info, booking and promotional material contact

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Do Not Disturb Fri, 13 Apr 2012 14:23:01 +0000

In case you somehow missed the front page, I’ve just finished a live-mashup-jam-bootleg-remixtape-thing called Do Not Disturb. It’s a live set built in a hotel room somewhere in Sweden basing on messing around with random hip hop and pop-music vocals combining them with bits and pieces of unreleased Recue material (do check out the front page if you really missed it).

In case you’re like me, you’re probably here for some tech details! The set is built around a fairly basic Ableton Live + NI Maschine setup with a Novation Launchpad and the awesome Liine Lemur running on an iPad controlling tons of stuff. I’ve been trying to hide the computer (from the audience yes, but mainly) from me lately in live situations so that I wouldn’t have the option to stare the screen to check what I’m doing. Hiding behind a laptop is what you see too often on EDM sets and I’m trying to avoid that. The controllers these days provide good amount of feedback on the set anyway. It doesn’t make me an instant rock star performer but it challenges me to trust the controllers more as instruments and not just remotes for software.

The set is played on a knee high night table and filmed using professional hollywood grade equipment like an ironing board and a night stand. Initially the whole thing was actually twice as long but to keep it consistent, the essential tracks were picked (and I don’t think my back would have really been able to cope with one hour of nodding in an over 90 degree angle). Do Not Disturb is completely free to download on its soundcloud page and if the 1000 free download limit is reached, I’ll be dazzled and stoked and throw in some extras from the outtakes. So if you appreciate what you hear/see, do consider sharing it (maybe with an orthopedist or a chiropractor to study).

Hollywood grade camera rig.

Also noted from the video besides the goofy swaying is that I do those typical “ouch that button was hot!”-pinches that look quite entertaining. Also.. what’s with the sticking pinkies again?!

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Foundations Sun, 27 Nov 2011 15:29:32 +0000 Some time ago I was stoked to notice that some of my tracks had been getting airtime on an excellent web radio station female viagra in india and were actually among the most played ones along with artist like visa how often can you take cialis,  viagra for sale paypal and discount viagra usa. But I was even more excited to learn that they also run a record label focusing on soulful, melodic electronic music. canadian viagra has now released Foundations Compilation that includes a collection of favorite music on the radio station. I’m lucky to have two tracks featured in the compilations which are Between Stations and Himanka, originally released on the 2006 Recue album Between Stations. The tracks have been completely remastered for the compilation and Hamish Birt has produced a lovely promo video featuring Himanka.

You can get Foundations from Bandcamp, Beatport and Juno Download.

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#winning Wed, 11 May 2011 15:22:16 +0000

Two weeks ago I posted an upcoming remix on soundcloud without revealing any details on the artist or track. I left it for the listeners to figure that one out. After few subtle hints and nearly 200 listens the answer to the mystery has been found! The one solving the “riddle” and proving his knowledge on Scandinavian electronica was Christopher Hatton. He was able to draw the link to the remixed artist who is… the excellent Planet Boelex featuring the lush vocal work of Lisa’s Antenna. Planet Boelex is gathering an army of remixers for an upcoming release and this is my take on ‘Walk Ahead’ from 2008 Planet Boelex and Lisa’s Antenna collaboration album Little World. If you’re unfamiliar with Planet B, shame on you, as Chris puts it so well: “Pretty unmistakeable voice… Anyone unfamiliar, and wanting some soothing chillout for the quiet moments do well to check out their excellent (and free!) album.” and RIGHT NOW, I would add. For this awesome display of awesome awesomeness, Chris gets himself a copy of Leftover Love – Extended Collectors Edition. Congrats.

Meanwhile on the other side of the internet, visual artist Rosie Jane has created a short blipvert for Korento (All the Wrong Places, 2008). Looking really nice I’d say. Definitely wouldn’t mind seeing more of this.

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Riddle me this, riddle me that… Fri, 22 Apr 2011 20:34:42 +0000 …what the hell is this track?!

Sorry about the bad rhyming on the riddle, I’m still practicing on my mad villain skills. Anyway, it happens to be so that I’ve just finished a remix for an excellent artist! More details and the future of the remix will be disclosed later on.. but here is the catch. Be the first one to recognize the artist and the track being remixed and win yourself a copy of Leftover Love Extended Edition! You’ll get an awesome c-cassette plus of course the lossless digital files (of your choice) for your mp3 player in case your walkman is busted. Submit the results of your investigation by adding a comment right here to this post or in the soundcloud page of the remix.

But here is the track. The beautiful mellow and melodic original mutated after a couple of studio sessions to this kind of dubby half stepped, even housey track, with a twist of d’n’b.

Go ahead give it a shot, it’s actually not that difficult once you give it a thought.

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