Friday, May 6, 2016

Cassette Review: DJ Too Slow "Fuck All" (Personal Archives)

[$7 // Edition of 100 //]

With a name like DJ Too Slow I expected to hear a lot of beats on this cassette and I also expected that maybe they'd be screwed a bit because that's what happens when you slow stuff down.    As much as I think this name of "DJ Too Slow" though is about the music, I like to think of it as that high-fiving game where it would come after "Down Low".    If I became DJ Down Low could we make a split cassette together?

The thing about DJ Too Slow being too slow though is somewhat true.   His music has this slow keyboard sound which goes into a deep organ drone vibe.   It's ambient to say the least and it can also become spatial, like satelittes beeping.    A hum, much like singing, can come out just as well, and then notes begin to come through as if in scales and as if in singing as well.

It then takes this turn into what I like to think of as "breathing exercises" simply because a person doesn't sing words but rather "ahh" and sounds like that which is kind of like when you're told to breathe when you're pregnant and just in general a sound you might make without words, almost like a sigh.   I've heard this done in drone before and I'm pretty sure that BBJr. has done it before.

At some points it even sounds like the start of a song, as if to be that intro which takes you into pop punk bliss or Blue October, but then it just continues to drone out, even with a little bit of strings, perhaps from a sitar, in trill form.    It definitely has a calming feel to it though, such as one would find in yoga or meditation and I can appreciate that about it.

Just when I went to look up something on the j-card I came across the description of this cassette (or "what is going on") and I found that Side A, as per the j-card, is a remix of "Fuck Everybody, You Can Do Anything" by The Andrew Weathers Ensemble and Side B is a remix of "Fuck Everything" by Casey Chisolm and in each case the seven tracks were stretched, slowed and mixed together.

Aside from that giving me two new pieces of music to listen to and two new artists to check out as well, it is worth noting that I did feel like this might be called DJ Too Slow because it feels like it could be the sounds of hip hop only slowed down and hence he becomes DJ Too Slow.    So, on the contrast of it, if the music was really fast like how they make The Chipmunks then I could see the artist being DJ Too Fast (But I'd probably use DJ Too Quik instead)

It has this interesting quality to it though where it is able to stand on its own and resemble each other- on each side- so that if I hadn't read the side panel I could have just experienced this and reviewed it at face value, as if two new pieces of music created by someone named DJ Too Slow, and I think that is just a testament to how this has been remixed and reworked more than anything else because I do typically catch on to remixes in the more traditional sense than this.  (Though I'm still confused as to whether each side is remixed by someone or if the same person did both remixes but I do believe it to be one artist remixing both pieces)

It is certainly interesting though that these songs were layered over each other at such a slowed speed where they could make this.   Side B has this ambient feel to it still, though there are these blasts of Transformers/modem-like sounds coming through.  I'm not sure how one might go about making music like this in the first place (I think I'd need a better keyboard) but to think of it as being an alternate version of something which already exists... I mean, how do you listen to something and think you can get this from the result of manipulating it?  It is truly mind-boggling to me and nothing short of magical.

Any confusion within this cassette just seems to add to its allure.   I realize that there is a straight forward- a correct answer- as to what is going on here and I have stumbled around it, sometimes not getting it right, but the fact remains that our ears have been trained to hear things a certain way.    This is why some instances- such as the truth- seem less plausible than others.    But I've never really been as concerned with what goes into making the music in terms of instruments as I have been with the overall sound of it and this cassette is just that damn good.

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