Bits

Bits, I suppose, is my first release. I’m thrilled to share it here, with a community that has been so amazing and supportive since I joined a little over a year ago.

This is an attempt at bypassing the ridiculous expectations I so often set for myself, which prevent me from getting anything done. Those expectations that lead me to compulsively record without ever editing, refining, sharing. Those expectations that convince me I need to become a mastering engineer to release anything half-decent. Bits, then, is an attempt at throwing that shit out the window and having fun in the process.

Though the recordings were made over a period of two years, assembly took the better part of a day. I found some stuff I liked, and then I forced myself to assemble freely and quickly with minimal editing. I have great respect for the skills involved in mixing and mastering, but I deliberately avoided those processes simply because they often become insurmountable obstacles.

It’s rough around the edges, and that makes me happy. I hope you enjoy.

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I’m enjoying this a lot. Very nice combinations of synthetic and field-recording type sounds.

Also I very much relate to this, which is funny considering how much of my favorite music is lo-fi and noisy, and a “polished mix” is actually very low on my list of what makes a piece of music compelling. Anyway… thanks for sharing!

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wow, this is great! cheers! is the “meow” type sound towards the beginning a sample?

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Thank you both for listening!

@crim Exactly – I’m in the same boat. Something that often resonates with me is a careful balance between using ostensibly lo-fi sources and the arrangement of those sources in a larger, more refined context. The work of Jan Jelinek ticks this box for me – his mixing, especially in later releases, is something I love and aspire to.

@alanza I wish I knew exactly where that sound came from :slight_smile: It sounds like something I played on Molly the Polly (Norns) and then ran through cassette. Much, if not all, of my process revolves around recording multiple sources - modular, Norns, field recordings, etc - and then recycling that material days, months, sometimes years later (as is the case with Bits). That distance is helpful to me, compositionally, but of course it means I forget precise details.

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This is very good. ambling delicate, lush sounds. thanks for sharing.

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Thank you @ado ! :bowing_man:

Well whatever you did, I think it worked great. Listening right now, this sounds extremely balanced, super wide and all the sounds feel very “tight” and easy to place. I can really hear the cool things the tape is doing to mess up stuff like things are under a microscope or something (or I’m imagining it, either way, very cool hah). I just borrowed a three-head cassette deck from a friend, and listening to this is super inspiring, thanks for sharing.

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this is fantastic :slight_smile:

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Yeah I picked it up on first listen and have been mostly listening on headphones while doing stuff… Nothing jumped out as needing any polish or oomf. Partly the music doesn’t give me any particular expectations regarding what a decent mix would be like, I guess. If I’m listening to, say, a soul record or a folk record I have more baggage about how it’s supposed to sound.

As someone who tends to slave over small tweaks, it was a good reminder that as a listener I don’t necessarily care at all. :smile:

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This!

It’s so helpful - and encouraging - to get these perspectives. Thanks again everyone for your time and comments!

@jlmitch5 Looking forward to hearing what you cook up with that cassette deck :slight_smile:

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thanks! it (a marantz pmd-430) has been a lot of fun so far running in feedback loops with various things.

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