mdreamsdigi001

05.02.2019

Hakim Murphy - Beatsmith - mdreamsdigi001

Beatsmith

It’s been a minute since the last Machining Dreams release, however I have come with an album. It is called Beatsmith. Really it is a retrospective project as this album was made several years ago. Now is the time to present these tunes to the world. All produced in a two period sometime in 2013 and will finally see the light of day. Many harmonies and rhythms protrude through speaker from my psyche, creating this LP presented here. There are nine tunes and three interludes for your listening pleasure. The nature is typical me, blurring the line between house and techno which work on the dance floor or sitting somewhere chilling. Digital only, the first Machining Dreams release to be like this is here for you:

Tears of Jack///We begin the journey with syncopated beats and an arpeggio. Futuristic in tone, the tune keeps evolving as more elements are added. Meanwhile the synth arp continues to modulate throughout the entire duration of the piece. Chords come in to add flavor to the mixture of elements. As well, the chord progression does not resolve until close to the end, which will reward and listener who chooses to stay throughout the 6:47.

Starship Prisms///More syncopated sounds here. A bass line and synth melody round out the elements until later when a melody comes in for a brief spell. The percussion is really driving, giving off the image of riding on a space ship through hyperspace.

Syncopated Movements///Bouncing rhythms that circulate around each other is the theme here. Percussion and chords strike first that leads a listener to a driving bass line. Notes in the high register start to vibrate giving the sound great diversity while the hats come in and pick up the pace. The pace is like bouncing up and down on a giant rubber ball while experiencing an barrage of tones.

Flowing Suns///Chords and sparse notes ring out introducing the rest of the tune. A bass line keeps the low register busy coupled with the continued chord progression running over the top. Modulating like sun flares, the chords keep the ear busy as the percussion changes, bringing the tune to life like suns do for planets.

Lullaby Beginnings///The first interlude happens with a melody with much delay from outer space.

Magic Rainfall///A deceptive breakbeat appears supported by an arpeggio line. Long notes ring out to fill up the spectrum that introduce chords and the driving bass line. Two arpeggio lines play with each other as the tune builds. The adventure takes a few turns and towards the end a chord progression comes in to add resolution. Like when one is skiing down a mountain and reaches the bottom safely.

Movements In Space///Bumping percussion drives the tune while chords and a bass line come in to cause more movement. Like the Marvel character ‘Juggernaut’, the track cannot be stopped once its starts. The sounds keep ringing from the entire spectrum causing one to shake their body eventually due to the swirling smoking tones.

Secret Melodies///Interlude number 2 is another melody that comes with much soul and delay too.

Damage Control///Another tune with bouncing effected percussion, this time however more of a chord progression from the outset. Sounding like a boxing match as the chords punch the bass line counter punches. The track continues to evolve as the journey continues with the modulating chords and percussion.

Machine Work///Syncopated percussion appears as a chord is sustained from time to time. From the outset the percussion is quite aggressive as the syncopated beats remain steady and a bit later a nice chord progression shows its head, but only for a bit before we return to the first section of the tune. Which reminds a listener of riding the train and seeing the same things in the landscape but then suddenly something catches your eye for a brief moment.

Transverse///The last interlude is an arpeggio from space that modulates like being dragged playfully through a wormhole.

Solar Winds///To end the excursion is deep house tune that features a chord progression as the main theme that swells up to introduce the bass line. The modulating chords continue to emote from the speakers as the percussions becomes more prevalent. A melody also comes in to add color and emotion, which is fitting for the end of the tune as the projected started aggressive and ends passive.

hakim murphy

xcptape02

3.25.19

xcpt02

Shadow Wands

Chris Mitchell is back on the scene and this time he has flipped the script with a beatless LP titled “Shadow Lands” on XCPT. Available in cassette tape form and digital, this project will leave you stunned. Eight compositions that are completely unique and separate but yet fit together. The cohesive nature is due to the titles, each tune feels eerie and emotive by virtue of Mitchell’s synth choices and effects work. Really this release could be a series of soundtracks for movie scenes and the like. Mitchell really looked into himself to pull out these tones and his imagination has really matured in comparison to his earlier works. The sonic palette is quite full and impressive in that the full frequency spectrum is used and with every new listen you discover new elements. For chilling, cleaning, or smoking this release will keep one’s mind going, placing unconscious suggestions into your psyche, which will make one want to play it over and over again.

Severing the Pain on Analysis///Mitchell begins the project with a bubble like arpeggio that leads into melody and harmony tones. The choir effect is in full form, giving this first song an ancient church feel. The long drones become the forefront and hypnotize you just to be replace by a forever morphing arpeggio. The drones come in and out with different amount of velocities giving variety to the sound.

Undivided///A tin like melody comes out the box that is supported by a bass line. Like an 80’s science fiction movie, the synths and melody sound like they should be accompanying a low budget b film in where something shocking had been revealed. As the tune progresses, new tones appear to create an atmosphere of perhaps remorse.

Igo///Noise is the theme here, distorted waveforms pulsate while a sub bass booms underneath it all. Quite subtly is there a white noise line sounding and suddenly distraught tones play. These tones continue to modulate as one hi-hat can be heard keeping the tempo. Short and sweet is this track, and I am picturing a space traveler who’s life is suddenly in danger; and the traveler fails to save it.

Galdos///An aggressive bass tone begins followed by sparse synth work. The pulsating effects and distortion could cause some disturbing thoughts. One could ask what happened, or would be asking if this sound was brought to life. Again hi-hats strike as the next section begins with an arpeggio lightening up the mood a bit. Mitchell really got that SH-101 sound going here.

After the Fall///The lighter side of Mitchell is present here. The tones are not as harsh as in the previous tunes until the bass line arrives. The bass changes the complexion of the whole tune. Really it is sweet and sour. While the tones above are nice and airy with beautiful synth patches and effects, while the bass is evil and hard. Like the Gemini astrological sign, one is getting two personalities wrapped up in one.

Spirits of the Fallen///Sparse melody notes ring from the ether. The bass line is driving and all these elements are sounding. It is a slow sensory overload. The low sounding horns are speaking. I cannot quite make out the message but there is definitely meaning there. The bass line is keeping the pulse like a march to the place where the spirits will rest their weary souls.

Weighs in Passing///Dissident notes sound almost like random arpeggios, but there is order to this madness. The tone timbres are actually quite soft sounding but mixed with the tone pitches makes the piece a bit uneasy. Sometimes some of the tones are panning left to right and are joined by bass notes and drones. I get a feeling that a surprise is about to happen at any moment. Like a guy about to pull a table cloth from the table with dishes on it, except he never does. Quite the build up with no release is my description.

Prayers in Empty Street///Mitchell ends the project with arpeggios and droning synths. The drones make the tune rhythmic with them serving as the back beat, striking on the two and four. Maybe the most straight forward composition in the project, however I am okay with that due to the fact my brain needed the time to process all of what I just experienced.

hakim murphy

NM-03

02.05.19

Images of a Myth (Remixes)

NM-03

Dream Scoring is a project between HEAR and I that started in 2016, which saw us release our first 12″ Images of a Myth on HEAR’s Naissance Musik. Now more than two years later we present a remix project from the above EP. HEAR enlisted a plethora of producers that vary our sound, Wareika, Amir Alexander, Yard One, and Nesta helped us to create a very diverse sounding EP. Check the sounds and enjoy for yourself:

Motion Currents – Wareika’s Moon Aligned Remix///This remix features a splattering of percussive elements that groove and in the background are the many tones moving through time. Chords come as a voice narrates the 12 minute excursion and throughout are many modulations for added color. The vocals are very soulful and are highlighted by the chords. Definitely a club banger for many occasions. When one wants to go on an extended journey, this remix is here for you.

Story Catcher – Amir Alexander’s Gritty City Refix///A pulsating remix that is close and yet far from the original. The same pulsating tones sound throughout, however the musical parts around it unfold quite differently. The percussion flickers meanwhile the bass line develops and Amir adds a sprinkle of melodic panning lines and strings that compliment each other. This movement is quite deep and keeps a listener’s attention. Somewhere between the line of house and techno is this track which makes it quite a versatile dance floor weapon.

Blowed Out – Yard One’s Lucid Dreamshape///Like the name suggest this remix from Yard One is extremely dreamy. The chorus effect sparkles on the instruments from the beginning and as the elements appear one by one, the fog gets thicker and thicker. The fuzzy feeling is maintained through the tune’s entirety, yet the melody instruments and guitar licks are free from the haze which brings a new dimension to the reality of the tune. Lucid and dreamy indeed, hypnotic vibes here all day in this tune, which makes for a powerful listening experience.

Silhouette – Nesta’s Wavy Remix///To end the project, Nesta presents a steady track for the more minimal type heads. The tune moves steadily, building up momentum and keeping a groove. Full and beefy are good adjectives at play here. Many elements from the original appear halfway and fit nicely with the new waveform realization. This cut will definitely appeal to many djs and listeners out here.

Available at all streaming and digital ports.   

hakm murphy

The art of the live pa…

12.26.18

Slow Kindling

hm505 – Slow Kindling

2018 has been a very interesting year for me. I have reached a lot of non musical milestones that has kept me mostly away from music. However I am refreshed after my hiatus and today’s topic is the live pa in dance music.

These come in many variations and I personally like to use some sort of drum machine, sampler, and synth combination. Of course many people use the computer but I find it to be unnecessary due to the fact that I don’t want to ruin my computer in a club situation. With all that being said, let’s examine what a live show is in my opinion.

Pre-written patterns that one can arrange live on the fly. Typically one needs a machine like a Mpc, Octatrack, or a computer. A computer is obviously the most versatile because you can use DAWs and have many different patterns or samples or midi notes at your disposal. However this can be really challenging because of the infinite amount of possibilities.

Having limited choices help me to focus and that is why I prefer the hardware in which a few select machines are used. I prepare my patterns and then proceed to arrange the tunes with modulation and all. I prefer to run everything through a Kaoss pad to give that extra layer of efx and sampling.

All in all, even if you sample every instrument on the fly to make your pa, it really comes down to how well can you arrange a tune. I think there are always two things in producing music: the initial idea and the arrangement. In which the latter most people have the hardest time figuring out.

I do love djing but making a live show is also very satisfying as well. Especially for the ones that are just for listening, in the podcast incarnation, because I can really be free and concentrate on creating some new textures and moments. In the club, one must respond to the crowd to make sure it is not boring.

With all that being said here are some waveforms of freedom using Volcas, microKorg, and a Koass pad:

hakim murphy

Perp-012

6.3.2018

After quite the long hiatus, I am back posting on Machining Dreams blog and I am starting back with a various piece featuring several Chicago luminaries.

Babershop LP_Cover
Perp-012

 

Welcome to the Barbershop. This LP arrives with tunes from some of your favorite artists representing Chicago’s underground dance music sphere on the city’s bred label; Perpetual Rhythms. A wide variety of fresh cuts and genres are showcased, ranging from Deep House and Techno to Experimental and Ambient, providing an eclectic listening experience. The central theme of the LP is “things that relate to a barbershop”, topics such as hairstyles, hair products and humor. We invite you to stay a while and experience this sonic journey with an open mind.

dcee – Suavecito // A smooth, deep house track filled with colorful chord pads, sparse bassline, and metallic percussion coupled with a chirping melody.

Chicagodeep – Blow Out // An in your face house beater where the bassline keeps the groove and organ stabs color the tune all while a low synth pad modulates underneath the groove.

DCook – Comb Over // Beat down sounds reside here through the slow tempo and chord progression. Sounding clean, the track takes the listener on a journey of tasty house elements.

Taelue – Razor Line Up // Continuing is another beat down track except we delve into darker territory. The bass line establishes the diabolical character while the tune builds momentum slowly and more dark sounds join the fray.

Hakim Murphy – Finger Wave // Sparse percussion strikes that lead into modulating chords of emotive goodness. The chord motif and percussion make playful changes as if one was floating through the clouds.

Obsolete Music Technology – High Top Fade // An energetic tune that straddles the house and techno genre pulsates with a steady bassline, melodic pads, and phasing percussion.

Specter – Butters Whipped // A classic drum set oozes from the speakers introducing warm sounds that tepidly caress the listener’s ear drums. The elements build up quite quickly assembling a sparkling groove that beats through time.

Isoke – Soul Glo // A bright banger that wastes no time establishing its feeling; driving percussion and 1 bar synth lines pay homage to the Chicago track masters from yesteryear.

Damon Lamar – Bermuda Triangle // Rounding out the LP is a deep rider that serves up a plate of beautiful nostalgia. The wonderful myriad of shuffling drums, bass and synth pads bring forth thoughts of sailing away on the Atlantic Ocean.

Chicago Skyway – Edged out // Reverb and delay introduce melodies of grandeur. The tones swirl around almost as if they are filtered through a kaleidoscope. This effect gives the tune several interesting tonal characters as it progresses.

As I’ve listened through the LP several times in order, I think it has a lot to say in these musical dark ages.

hakim

Available at:

Juno

Deejay

Decks

Redeye

 

AC009

11.4.16

Remnants EPa

AC009a

Chris Mitchell is back on Anunnaki Cartel with a three track 12″ that features strong drum programming with a dystopian feel. Mitchell is pushing the worried and anxious sound, apparently he thinks house and techno is not always roses and peaches. The Remnants EP features three tunes with the mechanical feelings of cyborgs running around in industrial areas creating dance music.

Remnants///Panning arp lines, boxy percussion, with long bass notes that double as a melody begin this 12″. Later the beats become chunky as the toms strike and shimmering sustained crashes appear. The tune remain crunchy until its conclusion as the dystopian feeling is prevalent.

Opinions Are Prisons///A full palette of sounds begins the B side of the wax. A voice in the background states something that is not recognizable. An arp line is the main focus with long bass notes serving as a complimentary line. The voice modulates as the percussion moves along. A melody line comes in to add depth. The elements continue to change as the vocals ring out until the end.

Succubi///A sub kick begins the end as a voice and synth slowly gain steam and volume. The pulsating kick leads us into percussion which is a change from the first two tracks. The vocal moves around as two synth lines play off each other with slow modulations. A melody line appears to cause an emotive feel as all the elements progress to their peak. The synth lines become a bit more fuzzier as a filter also becomes audible which leads a listener right to the break.

Remnants EP

AC009b

Available at:

Decks

Juno

Redeye Records

Technique

Crosstalk

Clone

 

 

 

AE101

9.9.16

AE101

AE101b

New Dutch label called Another Earth is debuting now with a split EP as its first release. Esther Duijn is the label owner and she is also featured on the B side of this release, teamed up with her partner Steady Douglas. The A side features techno head Myles Sergé. This music here is leaning toward that techno sound with house sensibilities. Here is the prose from the label:

There is a new label under the horizon and it’s first imprint is all about warm heavy Detroit influenced deep techno. Another Earth combines 2 acts together in a Split EP series who compliment each others sound. The A-side hosts the renowned US based producer, Myles Sergé (MS – RE(FORM) ), who, for these 2 tracks, let his machines run crazy beat patterns in a old school Detroit techno vibe. The B-side features Dutch based duo Duijn & Douglas (Esther Duijn & Steady Douglas). Their stripped warm heavy padded deep techno influenced tracks are perfect for creating some heat on the dance floor and the B2, Stray, is driven by Berenice van Leer’s lush intense voice.

Myles Sergé – The Art of Shadow Thoughts///Ambient sounds begin as percussion strikes, creating a very eerie effect. The percussion slowly builds establishing the groove, first the hats, then the rides, and finally the toms ring out. Later a chord progression appears that is supported by the eerie pad that began the track. The elements move around until the conclusion.

Myles Sergé – Lunokhod 1///A straight beater as the tune has a heavy kick and severely syncopated rhythm. The percussion builds and builds as track moves forward gaining momentum all the while. Definitely one for the peak time hours as the rides picks up the tempo even further. Then machine sounds appear sounding like a factory robot that does the same job over and over that adds flavor to track. Some proper techno right here.

Duijn&Douglas – Bizar///The B side begins with a smoldering sound of pumping kicks, bass, and a chord stab. This tune is more on the dub techno tip. Subtly the chords and the hihats grow in volume. The percussion growing every so gently just to lead us to the main theme. The chords and percussion are modulating in harmony as the track grooves. The pulsating chords get fuzzier with each new go around of the theme until the closure.

Duijn&Douglas feat. Berenice – Stray///Tuned percussion end this 12” with its banging kick and droning voice of Berenice. A beautiful melody comes in as Berenice begins to sing, a few moments later a house bassline appears to give it that warm feel. All the elements then come together and groove. The interplay between the elements move fluidly as the track maintains a bouncy feel until the culmination.

Available at:

Clone

Hardwax

Juno

Deejay

Redeye

Freestyle

Technique

Crosstalk