Kraftwerk announce North American 3-D concert tour

Kraftwerk are bringing their 3-D live show to North America in 2022.

Following the cancellation of a tour intended to mark the German group’s 50th anniversary in 2020, amid the COVID-19 pandemic, 24 new dates have been announced, spanning the months of May, June and July.

Kicking off in St. Louis on 27th May, the group will tour extensively across the US, and also stop off in Canada, with shows in Toronto, Montréal and, finally, Vancouver on 10th July. Tickets for the tour go on sale on Friday, 5th November. Find more information here.

The group also have a number of European dates pencilled in for 2022, including shows in Milan, Nîmes and Geneva, and at France’s Rock en Seine festival. Their current touring line-up consists of Fritz Hilpert, Henning Schmitz, Falk Grieffenhagen and co-founder Ralf Hütter. 

Earlier this week, the electronic music pioneers were inducted into the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame.

Fellow group co-founder Florian Schneider passed away in April 2020, at the age of 73.

Tim Sweeney’s Beats In Space is coming to Apple Music

Tim Sweeney has relaunched his long-running Beats In Space radio show on a new home, the Apple Music 1 station.

Having aired 1,000 broadcasts across 21 years on New York’s WNYU radio station, Sweeney announced the show would come to an end back in March of this year. Having now returned, it will streaming for free via Apple’s radio station, with archival mixes available exclusively to Apple Music listeners.

The new-look Beats In Space sees Sweeney move from recording and airing the show at WNYU’s basement studios to Apple Music’s studios in Manhattan. He’s also stated that the new partnership will allow him to potentially air future editions of the show from Apple Music’s other worldwide studios, and link up with a number of artists in the process.

Sweeney, as well as the show’s guest DJs, will be paid, while the artists whose music appears in mixes aired on the show will be paid out from Apple Music’s streaming subscription service.

Sweeney has said that he’ll retain full control of inviting guest artists onto the show, with each edition set to feature an hour mix from himself, and an additional hour from a guest DJ. The first edition, aired at 10pm ET on Monday, 1st November, saw him joined by Planningtorock.

In a statement about the return of Beats In Space, Sweeney said: “After 21 years on college radio in NYC, it felt time to graduate and take the next step to bring things to a wider audience. I still have the freedom to choose the music and guests DJ’s I want for the show, but now I have a team of people to help make that vision a reality. I’m really excited about taking the radio show on the road. We can record at a Beats In Space festival in Japan, a warehouse party in São Paulo or use one of the many Apple Music studios (New York, LA, London, Paris, Berlin and Tokyo). It’s a chance to really showcase what’s happening in dance music culture around the world.”

Listen back to the first episode of Beats in Space on Apple Music here

Ploy launches label, Deaf Test, with new EP, ‘Rayhana’: listen

Ploy is launching his own label, Deaf Test.

Taking its name from a club night that he launched in London earlier this year, the label, he said in a statement, is “a vehicle for my personal output now”. 

He continued: “I have more club-focussed music on the way, and I’ll be exploring meaningful collaborations too. The name is due to me being deaf in one ear from an early age.”

Deaf Test’s first release will be the three-track ‘Rayhana’ EP, which is due out on 19th November. You can listen to the title track below.

The EP follows on from releases for labels such as Hessle Audio and Timedance, as well as 2020 debut album ‘Unlit Signals’, which came out on L.I.E.S.

Following the release of ‘Rayhana’, Ploy will put on a second Deaf Test party, at London club Venue MOT Unit 18 on 4th December. The line-up will not be announced in advance.

Ploy previously contributed a track to Timedance’s 2020 compilation ‘Sharpen, Moving’, which marked the label’s fifth anniversary.

open·control is a Kickstarter-backed controller for Ableton Live triggering, looping, everything

Live just turned 20 years old, but there’s still no end to personalized ideas for how to control it. The latest is open·control, and it’s focused on quick, customizable triggers for the Session View, Looper, and editing – as a pocket-sized remote or via pedal inputs.

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Pierre aka KB Live Solutions wrote me about this a few weeks ago; he’s an Ableton Certified Trainer based in France. And if something about this notion is familiar – a clever trigger for working with Live’s Looper device – you might have seen the earlier iteration of this same idea from Pierre, then called State Of The Loop.

Live’s Looper already calls out for some smart control. Live users had clamored for this feature for years – inspired by stuff like the BOSS Loop Station line. But I find a lot of folks don’t ever really get around to using it, partly because it winds up being just another software device among many. And if you’re busy playing an instrument or even singing, you absolutely need external control. Ableton currently only makes Push, not Stomp. (Ableton Step? Ableton Pedal?) So you’re on your own.

open·control extends that idea to both the Looper and other triggers for navigating scenes and clips in Session and Arrangement views. (Yes, even Arrangement.) So it’s an all-in-one control hub for getting around Live with fast triggers, instead of the more elaborate grids as on Push, Novation Launchpad, the APC, and so on.

Even the basic edition offers visual feedback – both with color-coded LEDs and letters.

You can choose one of three versions:

A “Pocket” edition that’s a board with display (and still MIDI in/out minijack). That’s ultra compact, enough so you could just keep it by your laptop or whatever. 69EUR. (there’s also the option of 3D printing a cover)

The cute Pocket edition seems a nice companion to keep right next to your keyboard.

Boxed version, which is ready-to-use and designed for connecting pedals – 6 jack inputs for switches, 2 jack inputs for expression, MIDI in and out and USB, and its own plastic enclosure. 129 EUR.

It’s the more expensive option, but maybe the most practical – the Boxed version is ready to go for triggering via switches and pedals.
Connect up to 6 switches and 2 expression pedals.

Maker, which lets you devise whatever you want – add your own switches and resistors, choose the control method, choose the enclosure. 59 EUR.

The DIY version just gives you the main board and lets you solder on whatever you want – jacks or pots or something creative.
That custom version opens itself up to whatever housing and inputs you prefer.

“But I could just DIY this then” – well, yes. So clearly the other side of this is that the software is already built for you. It doesn’t require Max for Live, which means it works across all Live editions. That editor runs as a Web app – both online and offline. (Actually, I wish Push had something equivalent, even.)

And here’s where it really gets interesting. There are a ton of actions for this thing. That includes navigating your Arrangement – which Ableton largely ignores on Push and its hardware partners, but which is totally essential both for fast edit/mix sessions and for use with backing tracks. It also works with the new Variations feature, so this is a handy companion if you’re in the studio recording multiple takes.

The custom editor. Labeled “M4L” here but the tool doesn’t require Max for Live to run – a browser version is promised.

Check the full list:

Some highlights:

  • bpm, metronome, transport, automation and quantization on/off
  • switching views
  • Arrangement recording, looping, markers, punch in/out
  • Session recording, scene and clip launching (of course)
  • Track mute/arm, solo, find empty slots, etc.
  • Variations – storing and recalling
  • Randomize macros
  • Device selection
  • Looper: multiple loopers, per-looper play/record/overdub, the lot
  • Knobs – controlling Devices, sends, parameters

It’s really a lot, and while it’s all in Live, you have to do a lot of scripting or manual assignment work to get at all of this quickly. It’s terrific to have it in one place.

Pierre made a couple of examples that make this clearer:

A Scene example – short and long presses help you control the transport and navigation, with color-coded feedback.
The Arrangement shortcuts really have me – whether via fingers on the Pocket or foot pedals on the other editions (or your own DIY controls), it means the ability to jump around quickly in backing tracks or punch in and out recordings and variations easily.

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Plus, by making this fully open-source, I hope that this could help trigger (oops) a new wave of custom control for Live. Getting hardware control as you lay down takes and being able to navigate material – via Arrangement or Session or Looper or a combination – is fundamental to making Live a playable instrument.

And the next 20 years of Live should be more fluid with that than ever.

Other folks must have been waiting, as the project was funded in just six days. But Pierre wrote me clearly hoping you CDMers will hop on board too and provide advanced feedback. “The aim is to have a big community that will contribute to add features,” Pierre says. And it seems Live is due in its third decade to have a new generation of customization and personalization from musicians.

This isn’t a review – I don’t have the hardware myself. But it looks promising. And I have no doubt this kind of control is important, both from third parties and Ableton themselves. (I say that with some confidence partly as I’m in the middle of navigating this with a singer in a complex show now!)

Let us know what you think – or other solutions you may be looking at.

Full details:

And yeah, that Python Remote Script alone might be priceless, let alone with editor. It’s tempting to say go buy this hardware just to support him, even if you intend to modify the script and DIY your own hardware.

So indeed, this stuff is up on GitHub:

I can’t quite say it’s open-source yet in that there’s a placeholder for license, but no license file yet so – I do hope they fix that. A copyleft license here would work just fine and theoretically prevents any exploitation.

But it’s great to see this, and I have no qualms nudging our friends at Ableton to better support these scripting interfaces and customization. The last 20 years wouldn’t have happened without all that community input.

Fugees postpone reunion tour until 2022

Fugees have posted their much-anticipated reunion tour just days before it was due to begin.

Having played a short first show together in 15 years during September’s Global Citizen Live event in New York, the trio had been due to embark on a world tour on 2nd November at Chicago’s United Center.

All of their US shows, as well as dates in Paris and London, scheduled for the coming months will now take place in 2022, however, with the group citing uncertainty around venue capacity restrictions and changes due to the COVID-19 pandemic. The new dates have not yet been confirmed.

A statement shared by the group read: “Dates for our upcoming Fugees 25th anniversary tour are moving to early 2022 to ensure the best chance that all cities on the tour are fully open so we can perform for as many fans as possible.

“With so much excitement around the reunion tour, we are also happy to announce that we will be adding more cities and dates!”

Full details around the postponements, as well as new dates, have been promised for the near future.

Fugees’ reunion tour was originally announced in September, with the group marking the 25th anniversary of their seminal album ‘The Score’. 

New documentary on acid house and birth of UK rave culture launches crowdfunder for release

A crowdfunding campaign has been launched to support the release of a brand new documentary, ‘All We Wanna Do Is Dance’, which captures the explosion of acid house and UK rave culture from the late ’80s through into the ’90s.

The film – directed, edited and self-financed until now by Gordon Mason – is made up of archival footage, much of it never-seen-before and captured from 1988 onwards, from various dance music hubs, such as Chicago, Manchester, London and Ibiza.

The story, a press release explains, is “told by the people who were there, the pioneers who took on the establishment and literally fought for their right to party”.

Fingers Inc. member and legendary house music vocalist Robert Owens narrates the film, which takes in interviews with more than 60 influential figures from across the history of house and rave music culture, including producer and Trax Records A&R Marshall Jefferson; London’s key acid DJ Colin Faver (who passed away in 2015); Paul Oakenfold; Carl Cox; A Guy Called Gerald; Fabio & Grooverider; and many more. 

The film looks back at the Detroit and Chicago originators who developed the house music sound, and the parties from that time, and traces the development through to influential UK parties, such as Helter Skelter and Fantazia, as well as those that took place at Manchester’s legendary and now closed Haçienda club.

In addition to its extensive collection of interview, the film features a soundtrack of 56 classic house and rave music cuts, which, the crowdfunding page explains, means that “the music clearance budget is large, although this is offset against some frugal archive clearances and low post-production expenses”.

As a result, director Mason has launched a campaign to help finance the film through its final release stages, which you can support here, where you can also find out more about the project as a whole and watch a trailer for the documentary.

A new photobook capturing the Haçienda at its prime was recently published.

Last year, The Haçienda – which was recently recreated in VR – was voted one of the UK’s top historic sites, despite the fact the warehouse that once housed the Manchester club no longer exists. 

War Child announces underground music-led fundraising platform, The Right To Dance

War Child UK has launched a new fundraising platform with a focus on underground music.

The project, dubbed The Right To Dance, will, a press release explains, “raise vital funds for War Child’s critical work assisting the safety and recovery of children affected by conflict”. 

Working alongside figures from across the global dance music community, exclusive content will be offered to supporters of a subscription service (from £3 per month), with funds raised going towards supporting the charity’s work.

Among the exclusive content will be access to special events, new music and mixes, one-off merch collaborations and more, created in partnership with various artists, labels, promoters and collectives.

To mark the launch, DJ Lag has put together an exclusive DJ mix, forming the first instalment of the monthly TRTD Mix series, where members get access to the download and tracklist. There are also two newly commissioned ‘Scene Spotlights’:  Tim Lawrence on David Mancuso and The Loft, and Kakyo Trinah writing about queer Ugandan club culture by Kakyo Trinah. Further pieces on scenes past and present will follow.

A number of The Right To Dance events are also being lined up for the coming weeks. The first event will take place in support of the crisis in Yemen Emergency Fundraiser on Sunday, 5th December, at London’s Oval Space amd Pickle Factory. Taking place in partnership with We Out Here Festival and Foundation FM, the line-up and tickets will go live on Thursday, 4th November, with subscribers gaining exclusive access to pre-sale and ticket discounts.

Speaking about his involvement in The Right To Dance, DJ Lag said: “War Child have always understood the music space well and this specific campaign has an electronic music focus which felt like a very honest fit. Obviously the organisation is doing amazing work with children and young people around the world and to be part of those efforts is truly a privilege.

“I hope you’ll enjoy having a sneak preview from my new album that drops on the 18th February. The songs are not available anywhere else so getting a taste of them now means being one of the first people in the world to do so.”

Rob Williams, CEO of War Child, commented: “For over 25 years War Child has been working with the music industry to make remarkable things happen. In the UK, War Child’s work has motivated artists to record unique music and perform unforgettable shows.

“Now, we add a building block to our musical heritage with The Right To Dance – creating a new movement rooted in the values shared between War Child and the underground music community to change the lives of children living in conflict across the world.”

Find out more about The Right To Dance here.
Revisit DJ Lag’s recent DJ Mag cover feature here.

Kraftwerk Announces 2022 North America Tour

Following on their induction into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, Kraftwerk has announced plans for a 2022 North America Tour.

Their 3D show features the current lineup performing updated versions of their classic tracks, paired with 3D visuals which are viewed using special glasses.

Kraftwerk 2022 North America Tour Dates:

  • May 27- St. Louis, MO – The Pageant
  • May 29- Cleveland, OH – Connor Palace
  • June 1- Minneapolis, MN – State Theatre
  • June 2- Chicago, IL – Byline Bank Aragon Ballroom
  • June 4- Detroit, MI – Masonic Temple Detroit
  • June 6- Toronto, Ontario – Massey Hall
  • June 8- Montreal, Quebec – Salle Wilfrid-Pelletier
  • June 10- North Adams, MA – MASS MoCA
  • June 11- Boston, MA – Boch Center Wang Theatre
  • June 17- New York, NY – Radio City Music Hall
  • June 18- Philadelphia, PA – The Met
  • June 19- Washington, D.C. – The Anthem
  • June 22- Orlando, FL – Walt Disney Theatre @ Dr. Phillips Center
  • June 24- Nashville, TN – Ryman Auditorium
  • June 25- Memphis, TN – Crosstown Theater
  • June 27- Austin, TX – ACL Live at Moody Theater
  • June 28- Dallas, TX – Music Hall at Fair Park
  • June 30- Morrison, CO – Red Rocks Amphitheatre
  • July 3- San Diego, CA – San Diego Civic Auditorium
  • July 5- Los Angeles, CA – Shrine Auditorium
  • July 6- San Francisco, CA – Bill Graham Civic Auditorium
  • July 8- Portland, OR – Arlene Schnitzer Concert Hall
  • July 9- Seattle, WA – Paramount Theatre
  • July 10- Vancouver, British Columbia – Orpheum Theatre

Tickets go on sale on November 5.

Adventure Club inch closer to ‘Love // Chaos’ with BEAUZ and Tilian-assisted single, ‘Drive’

Adventure Club inch closer to ‘Love // Chaos’ with BEAUZ and Tilian-assisted single, ‘Drive’Adventure Club 1

Adventure Club‘s Love // Chaos is on the horizon, and the duo have presented fans a flux of singles emblematic of what’s to arrive. The latest—”Drive” featuring Tilian and co-produced with BEAUZ.

Featuring Tilian’s angsty vocals, “Drive” sets the tone for the full album release. The energy of the single ebbs and flows, while dubstep and bass drops sprinkle in against the song’s melodic backbone.

Speaking about “Drive” in an official release, Adventure Club shares,

“We’re so happy to have embarked and completed this musical journey. Beauz has been breaking incredible genre-defying ground, and Tilian has been one of our favorite artists for as long as we can remember.  I think everyone will be able to hear each artists distinct contributions to what is probably our favorite track on the upcoming album.”

“Drive” featuring Tilian is out now via Ultra Records. Stream now.

Featured image: Vortex Music

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NGHTMRE, Zomboy collide on debut collaboration, ‘Shell Shock’ featuring Georgia Ku

NGHTMRE, Zomboy collide on debut collaboration, ‘Shell Shock’ featuring Georgia KuNghtmre Edc Lv 2021 Rukes

NGHTMRE and Zomboy have come together for a single representing uniquely momentous career milestones for the respective artists. Delivering “Shell Shock” featuring Georgia Ku, the pair mark the 100th release on NGHTMRE and SLANDER‘s jointly owned, Gud Vibrations, inscribing the label’s sound and success with a fittingly heavy hitting and alluring collaboration.

“Shell Shock” delineates Zomboy’s first release since his 2020 track “Battlefields,” certainly fashioning a triumphant return for the British artist. The occasion encompasses NGHTMRE and Zomboy’s first time producing together, and hopefully not the last for all the dubstep fans craving more of the single’s electric energy.

Featured image: Rukes

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