Flux Pavilion talks .wav and his newfound freedom ‘from whatever Flux had been in the past’ [Interview]

Flux Pavilion talks .wav and his newfound freedom ‘from whatever Flux had been in the past’ [Interview]Flu Pavilion Press Shot 1 2020 Fiona Garden

Flux Pavilion’s .wav has come, but it has not broken. Ahead of his February 5 livestream on Moment House, during which he will perform the album with live instrumentals and vocals, the titan took the time to speak with Dancing Astronaut about the upcoming show, .wav, and a writing process shaped by intuitively feeling the music.

After the 2015 release of Flux’s debut LP, Tesla, fans would wait six years for his sophomore studio album. The project was originally slated to land in January 2020, an entire year before its eventual release on January 21, 2021. Questions arose regarding whether the postponement resulted in changes to the album’s structure, but the choice to push back .wav‘s release date wasn’t largely due to the COVID-19 pandemic, but rather because it just wasn’t ready. Flux told Dancing Astronaut,

“This album took as long as it did because I just didn’t want to rush past any moment, I wanted to make sure I had invested myself in every moment. I feel like as a society, we have got into the habit of trying to maximize efficiency and keep progressing and growing, sometimes to the detriment to our wellbeing. I just wanted to slow down and see what taking my time feels like.

Much of the album making process included deleting entire songs that simply didn’t feel right. “The album was done when I asked myself if this was the music that needed to be heard and the answer was, unquestionably, ‘yes,’” he explained.

Early in the English producer’s career, the focus had been not so much on curating a deeply intentional album; instead, the aim was to churn out music for the masses and then play it live. “Years of touring and trying to keep up with everyone else just left me pretty exhausted,” Flux said.

He added,

“I decided to just write music, with no aim other than it being sincere to how I was feeling on the day. This led me to explore my tools more than anything and I started really connecting with my equipment; each day spent having conversations with synthesizers and pieces of gear.”

This connection would inspire Flux to use analogue synthesizers throughout .wav, prompting him to do away with a more one-dimensional digital route. This choice can be traced back to the emotional response he receives from the equipment: “When I use analogue equipment I can feel it more, which often means I write a lot more,” he said.

Playing live is a critical goal for most producers, and it’s no secret that the COVID-19 pandemic has hampered their ability to connect with their audiences. By teaming up with the visual innovators at Moment House, which helps artists create ticketed, digital experiences, Flux hopes to bridge this gap as much as possible with his .wav livestream, and bring his listeners together through art, technology, quality design, and exciting user experiences. Broadcasting to all of North and South America as well as Asia Pacific and Europe, the .wav live show will represent Flux in live form as he’s never been seen before, and fan-submitted audio submissions are just one part of the stream’s novelty.

The producer, born Joshua Steele, stated,

“[I’ll be] using the fans submissions to interact with visuals and create something more organic and unique than is possible with just technology. It’s like my fans are giving the show its own soul, a collaboration in spirit.”

This whole show is about breaking through the dimensions of a stage and expanding on the levels of hyperfantasy we can create.”

Concluding the sonic renaissance that is .wav with his favorite tracklisting, “LOVE,” Flux feels that he has “turned over a stone and found a species [he’s] never seen before, and [he] needed time to study it.”

Moving beyond curating music for mass appeal or made to appease others, Flux Pavilion has finally honed in on the sound that feels true to him. And, while old Flux was exciting in a different way and exactly what dance music needed in the moment in that 2010 to 2015 span, this new sound has comfortably wriggled its way into the hearts of fans across the world while the man behind the moniker has never felt more liberated.

“I felt fundamentally free from whatever Flux had been in the past. Writing this album feels like more than a new chapter, it feels like a whole new book,” he said.

Tune in to Flux Pavilion’s .wav livestream at 4:00 p.m. EST / 7:00 p.m. PST on February 5; more information and tickets are available here.

Featured image: Fiona Garden

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80% of clubs will close by March without Government support, survey finds

80% of clubs will close by March without Government support, a new study from the Night Time Industries Assocation (NTIA) has found.

As it approaches 12 months since clubs across the UK were shuttered due to the coronavirus pandemic, the NTIA has surveyed over 100 clubs about the current struggles they are facing, primarily the lack of appropriate financial support, and an unclear exit strategy for reopening venues.

Of the 100 nightclubs surveyed, which included London’s Egg, Sub Club in Glasgow, and Hangar, the NTIA found that 88% of clubs in the UK are in over two months worth of rent arrears, 86% had been forced to make redundancies — with over 65% making over 60% of their workforce redundant before the end of 2020 — and 43% had still not recieved any kind of financial support or grant from the government.

Michael Kill, the CEO of the NTIA, said that we are “on the cusp of losing a cultural institution”, and that the Government has provided no support to the sector, and has failed to recognise its economic and cultural value.

“Consider this as an Industry,” he continued. “We have faced extreme adversity during this pandemic battling against financial hardship, increased regulatory constraints, business critical planning changes, financial services turning their backs on us and the continued refusal for the leaders of this country to mention Nightclubs or Late Night venues within the narrative – this is not negligence, this an intention to cull the sector advertently”.

Drew Burke, a director at Hangar club in Birmingham, added “This has effected not only business owners but staff who depend on their wages, breweries who provide beverages to venues, the customer who craves for social interaction and a release of work and home life duties, and so forth creating a huge domino effect what isn’t being fixed. Without venues and nightclubs, a huge social void looms causing mass redundancies, and a huge influx on mental health.”

While the UK Government has been vocal about financial support offered to everything from music venues to theatres, critics continue to argue more money and targeted support is needed. Kill has previously said that “the Government has led us to believe that they are intentionally aiming to collapse our sector”.

The NTIA have been a consistent vocal force throughout the pandemic and the subsequent shut down of the UK’s nightlife, most recently working with the government’s new All Party Parliamentary Group on their Night Time Economy taskforce. 

San Holo announces incoming LP ‘bb u ok?’ alongside new single

San Holo announces incoming LP ‘bb u ok?’ alongside new single131926841 825159734695358 298456542418737438 N

Superstar DJ and producer San Holo has announced his second album bb u ok? will be released May 21, 2020. The forthcoming album will be his first LP since 2018’s album1 and will be released via Holo’s own bitbird imprint. When San Holo released the title track in December, he shared the album title’s inspiration in a press release:

bb u ok?” is a question for you to ask yourself and the lovely people around you. Life is so fast paced these days, we often don’t take the time to answer this question genuinely. It’s so easy to fall out of touch with yourself and the people you love. We need genuine conversations and connections to keep going…reach out to someone close to you today with a simple ‘bb u ok?’”

Along with his album news, San Holo dropped off the second taste of bb u ok? with “find your way” featuring Bipolar Sunshine. True to San Holo’s signature sound, the single’s instrumental expertly blends pop ideas with the modern electronic sound while allowing the uplifting vocals to take center stage. “find your way” is the second San Holo track featuring Bipolar Sunshine following their effervescent album1 collaboration “brighter days.”

San Holo announces incoming LP ‘bb u ok?’ alongside new singleBb U Ok 1

Featured image : San Holo/Instagram

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Novation Circuit Update, Coming Feb 9th, ‘Worth The Hype’

Novation shared this teaser video, promising an update for the Circuit groovebox on Feb 9th, 2021.

Novation is updating its Circuit line to offer more capabilities, an enhanced workflow and more.

It’s no secret that the company will be introducing an update to its popular 6 year old Circuit groovebox. The Circuit is out of stock at most retailers and there have been unofficial leaks about the company introducing not one, but two new Circuit groovebox workstations.

No official details have been announced yet, but the company says that they are “Worth the hype.”

The Novation Circuit has received a series of significant firmware updates over the last 6 years, adding features that have made the groovebox a popular tool not just for beatmaking, but for building complete tracks.

But the evolution of the Circuit workflow is constrained by both the capabilities of the mk1’s physical hardware and by the risk of making the Circuit’s workflow less intuitive, as more alternative functions are added to the existing hardware controls.

The new Novation Circuit models are expected to move beyond these constraints by: adding additional control buttons to provide a more immediate workflow; adding additional I/O; and enhancing existing features to make the Circuit more capable as a standalone workstation.

Check out the preview video, embedded above, and share your thoughts in the comments on what features you’d like to see in a new Circuit!

Erica’s modular Dada Noise System II dives into joys of joysticks, history of Dada

With a panner that can be flown with a joystick – even for surround sound – and loads of other inventions, Erica Synths and Liquid Sky’s Ingmar Koch are boldly going deeper in Dada.

Dada Noise System II is the second edition of a collaboration between Erica Synths and Liquid Sky Artcollective. It’s a complete modular system, that’s intended as a complete integrated laboratory for sound.

Or as they put it, it’s “a modular synth-lab which is dedicated to create all kind of abstract organic analog noise / ambient soundscapes / industrial noise / bad ass bass / spheric atmospheres / experimental unheard drones / sonic glitches and of course all kind of thrilling horror- and scifi-sounds for the professionals.

They’re unveiling the whole project in a live stream tonight on Twitch, featuring Porto, Portugal’s Gustavo Lima aka a thousand details – we’ll be watching!

Tune in to hear how the system sounds:

https://www.twitch.tv/athousanddetails

8 PM London / 9 PM Berlin / 10 PM Riga
(and 3 PM New York / 12 PM LA and… okay, you know the drill…)

Those joysticks are really what add some fascinating direction to this one, and seem a must even if you just nab those Black series modules. They’re recordable, gestural, so you can use them for experimental sequencing, sound positioning, quadrophonic and surround sound, or even just elaborate panning in stereo.

There’s also a separate Quadrophonic Surround Panner.

It seems this could have some fascinating new potential for people working beyond stereo, too, and imagining sound outside clubs. They suggesting applications like film, installation, and gaming – or more experimental quad performances. It’s not hard to imagine some scores that want to get hands-on and analog with their surround design.

And the sum total of this thing is something that can make mad and experimental sounds unlike any other – true to the dada spirit, and the boundless potential of the synthesizer. Crazy sounds for crazy times.

Here’s how it all looks together:

Click to embiggen…

And specs:

  • Fusion VCO2
  • Fusion VCF3
  • Fusion Modulator
  • Black Stereo Delay
  • Black Joystick2 – one of the main elements of the Dada Noise System II which allow automations in sound and effects, positioning in the quadraphonic room, or can function as experimental sequencer and sound source.
  • Black VC Clock
  • Black Modulator
  • Black Dual VCF
  • Black Quad VCA
  • Black Spring Reverb
  • Black Output
  • 25 patch cables
  • Included vertical side panels
  • Included external PSU.

The full Dada System II rig will set you back €3310, but you get a heck of a system for that – and a lot of depth that goes beyond what a single keyboard/workstation would get you for the price.

Dada System II rig:

https://www.ericasynths.lv/shop/eurorack-systems/dada-noise-system-ii/

The Surround Panner runs 1820 EUR – and some people will get that on its own.

https://www.ericasynths.lv/shop/eurorack-systems/quadraphonic-surround-panner/

So for the full system configured as in the picture, you’d buy both, plus panels to connect top and bottom.

But whether or not you can afford a new modular now, let’s take some time for some Dada history and explore Dadaism as philosophy! Ingmar, the imagineer at Liquid Sky, has collected some videos. It worked in 1918, so it fits pretty well in 2021. Just to get you started:

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Most crucially, don’t forget Elsa von Freytag-Longhoven, the artist you perhaps should think of before you think of Marcel Duchamp. She may well have been the actual mind behind the infamous “fountain” (urinal readymade) artwork and – well, she’s cool, regardless.

Find plenty more wild inspiration on the Liquid Sky blog.

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Plus check the Liquid Sky collective Bandcamp page, too.

And here are some shots of the hardware, by arist a thousand details – he’s clearly enamored of the thing he’s playing tonight:

Kayzo and Black Tiger Sex Machine double up on ‘Lifeline’

Kayzo and Black Tiger Sex Machine double up on ‘Lifeline’Kayzo

Kayzo finished out 2020 in style, taking full advantage of the coveted opportunity to play an in-person music festival (Ultra Taiwan) and dropping the monstrous Delta Heavy collaboration “Tormenta” along the way. Now, he’s kicking off 2021 by continuing that momentum, teaming up with everyone’s favorite masked trio—Black Tiger Sex Machine—to jointly release “Lifeline.”

“Lifeline” sees Kayzo’s rock and metal affinities intertwine with Black Tiger Sex Machine’s electro house and dubstep expertise, supported by the vocal talents of members of the alt-pop band Point North. Opening with an ominous pluck followed closely by powerful dubstep drums, “Lifeline” quickly gives way to a vocal break that showcases gnarly metallic growl sound design with eerie background FX. The combined forces of Point North’s singing and Kayzo and Black Tiger Sex Machine’s forcible production styles make this an optimal candidate for festival anthem status.

Featured image: Rukes

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Petition launched to name new planet after SOPHIE

A petition has been launched to name a recently discovered planet after late visionary experimental pop artist, SOPHIE.

Sophie Xeon, known by stage name SOPHIE, passed away last Saturday (30th) following a tragic accident in Athens, Greece where the artist had been living.

In the wake of the icon’s death, a petition has been launched to name planet TOI 1338 b — discovered by a NASA intern in 2019 — SOPHIE, after “similarities between the interpretations and the aesthetic sense of SOPHIE’s visual work, specifically the cover for the 2018 album ‘Oil of Every Pearl’s UnInsides'”, were spotted by fans.

‘Sophie Xeon, known mononymously as SOPHIE, was a highly influential singer, songwriter, and producer who was a great inspiration to the LGBTQIA+ community,’ the petition, launched by Christian Arroyo, reads. ‘SOPHIE’s messages, actions, and music left an insurmountable impression on many LGBTQIA+ individuals. SOPHIE always pushed a message of individuality and expressing your true self, which resonated throughout everything the artist did.

‘I am requesting, at the discretion of the incredible scientists who discovered the planet, that TOI 1338 b be named in honor of the great LGBT+ influence, SOPHIE. SOPHIE’s fans would love to pay homage by having the artist’s name be remembered in this way, and for SOPHIE’s influence to continue to flourish for years to come.’

You can sign the petition here.

Record by relatively unknown UK electronic music artist becomes most expensive ever sold, at £41,000

A record by a relatively unknown UK electronic music artist has become the most expensive ever sold on Discogs. 

Produced by Scaramanga Silk — a London-based artist with a modest following of 280 fans on Facebook — ‘Choose Your Weapon’ was self-released by Silk back in 2008, and only 20 vinyls were pressed.

It’s the first time the record has been listed, and the sale price — $41,000 (£29,800) — makes ‘Choose Your Weapon’ the most expensive vinyl ever sold via the Discogs Marketplace.

Speaking with Discogs following the sale, Silk said it is “very difficult to understand why the release went for that kind of money as I do not believe that any record is worthy of such a valuation.

“You imagine that the highly limited edition nature of it would have been a major factor. The individual who made the purchase must have had some kind of special connection to the work too. There was a buzz around the record in 2008.”

Silk added that although it meant a lot that ‘Choose Your Weapon’ is “so important to somebody”, he was dissapointed “to see a promotional item reach such prices in the resale market when the artist sees no remuneration at all.”

The record, which is not available to stream online, has previously sold on eBay for $654.

In 2019, Discogs revealed the 100 most expensive items purchased in the United States via its online marketplace since its launch in 2005. Ranging from $2,247 to $15,000, the countdown features big names including Led Zeppelin, Nirvana and The Velvet Underground.

In September last year, a 12″ version of the late Avicii’s breakthrough track ‘Levels’ sold for $1,764.00 via Discogs.

SOPHIE’s girlfriend Evita Manji speaks out: ‘I can feel her being happy’

SOPHIE’s girlfriend Evita Manji speaks out: ‘I can feel her being happy’SOPHIE2520new2520music2520live2520set E1612418327357

Evita Manji, girlfriend of SOPHIE, has shared a heartfelt message to social media speaking to the Grammy-nominated experimental pop artist’s recent death in a fatal accident on January 30.

On Instagram, she wrote,

“I guess this is what it’s like to wake up from a dream, because my life with you felt like the best dream Sophie, Everyday was an endless stream of love and acceptance, a journey to know you deeper and deeper.

“Today I lost my everything …I can feel your energy everywhere around and inside me , you’re guiding me through this and calm me down like you would always do. Every particle of me will always have a piece of you…

“Sophie was a real angel, she was the sweetest, the kindest to every soul and everything around her. A very very special creature …. She was so curious about what is out there in the cosmos , I can feel her being happy and excited to explore the unknown. She’s an immaterial girl now, she can be anything she wants… and she is in everything around us….”

Manji further commented about the accident to MailOnline, stating that the Scottish musician was in the company of two friends at the time of incident. She also spoke with SOPHIE after the artist fell into an open space of a three-story building in central Athens while attempting to take a photograph of the full moon. Manji said,

“I managed to tell her I love her and to tell her to keep fighting. She was my life. We were supposed to get married.”

Manji said it took the authorities and fire services close to 90 minutes to extract and transport her to the Athen’s Attikon Hospital where she fatally succumbed to her injuries at around 4 am in the morning. Foul play has been ruled out in the investigation.

SOPHIE shifted electronic music forward by infusing pop and cutting-edge sound design, inspiring many in the experimental genre, and her legacy will be live on as a one-of-a-kind talent. A multitude of artists have paid homage to the influential electronic and trans producer amid news of the visionary’s death including Rihanna, Vince Staples, Dillon FrancisSam SmithCharli XCX, and more.

Featured image: Renata Raksha

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Live Nation sues insurance company amidst company’s refusal to cover COVID-19 claims

Live Nation sues insurance company amidst company’s refusal to cover COVID-19 claimsAif Live Nation Festival Accusations

Live Nation is suing their insurance company, Factory Mutual, for refusing to cover hundreds of millions of losses caused by the coronavirus pandemic. The lawsuit was filed in California federal court on January 29 as a result of the insurer refusing to honor their premium insurance policy, which specifically designates “communicable diseases” as a covered cause of loss, according to Live Nation’s outside counsel Marc D. Halpern. Live Nation purchased the premium policy on June 1, 2019 for coverage through June 1, 2020.

Live Nation is not the only entity suing Factory Mutual. A growing group of companies, including Ralph Lauren, New York University, and the Atlanta Falcons, are suing over Factory Mutual’s refusal to pay out claims on its Global Advantage All-Risk property insurance policy. The section of the policy in question specifies that while “communicable diseases” are a covered cause of loss, “pathogens, viruses, or other disease causing agents” do not fall under coverage. The suit notes that the policy’s intention is “meant to protect the insured against all risks of loss, whether known or unknown.”

Suits have been widespread following the devastating economic impact of the pandemic on many industries. Some of these suits will likely influence the insurer’s defense, which could point to the fact that the provision on property loss and damage only applies to physical damage and not losses caused by mandated closures. In response to this fact, Live Nation has already pointed to more than half a dozen other potential coverage areas in the policy. These includes time element coverage, which insures against losses caused by “the inability to put property to its normal use” and “Civil or Military Authority coverage,” which protects against losses caused by limitations placed on the company by civil or military leaders.

Factory Mutual has consistently taken the position that it will deny nearly all coverage sought by its policyholders for COVID-19 losses. As a result, Live Nation currently seeks declaratory relief in its proceedings.

H/T: Billboard

Featured image: Jen O’Neill

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