Tuesday, June 8, 2010

Love Dont Live Here Anymore.

But don't worry, it just moved. : )

Monday, May 10, 2010

Texas Love 4 Vice

When Vice UK asked for a submission, I knew I had to share the sound that can only be found right here in my home state of Texas. I am fortunate to live in a place where so many of my peers are creating the kind of music I love. When most kids are worrying about how the grass is greener elsewhere, these bands are working hard to make where they are where they want to be. This mix is different: it is not vintage or obscure records emanating from some small corner of the globe, but rather all current Texas synth based projects covering multiple genres. Included is everything from Industrial EBM to Techno, Leftfield Disco to Electro, Deep House to Minimal Wave and even a little Screwgaze for good measure.

I am grateful to all groups who were so kind to contribute to this compilation; special thanks to Klearlight Studios for helping master the final mix as well as producing several of the bands in it. I’d also like to thank Answering Machine Records for their submissions as well as their continued output of quality Texas synth music. I wouldn’t be who I am today if it wasn’t for all my creative friends across this big state.

There is something sacred in the geometry connecting Houston, Austin, and Dallas - this love triangle that we’re all a part of. This mix is a testament to what friends and neighbors are capable of and it’s a fitting time capsule for this time and place. If there’s only one thing I can say about this mix, it’d be simply, “Don’t Mess with Texas”

The Texas Love Triangle mix by Tommyboy


1. George Quartz - “Coconut”
2. Phantastes - “Flight of Stares”
3. Darktown Strutters - “Silver Bullet”
4. Indian Jewelry - “Same Mistake Man”
5. Corporate Park - “Intimate Precision”
6. //TENSE// - “Versus Man (TX Love Remix 2010)”
7. Seth Nemec - “Count Zero”
8. Jake Schrock - “Trigon”
9. E.R.P. (aka Convextion) - “Frozen Volatiles”
10. DYX - “Lips in the Darkness (feat. Press-On)”
11. Submersible Machines - “Riding Theta Waves”
12. Missions - “Phantasy”
13. Medio Mutante - “Transit (Demo)”
14. MVSCLZ - “Fascination (Across The Nation)”
15. R9 - “Dreamdance”
16. edrupt - “M-U-S-I-K”
17. betdat - “Nex (Radio Edit)”
18. MKF KÜNST - “Venga (TX Love Remix 2010)”
19. Berliner Eins - “Nite Life”
20. Twisted Wires - “Hell”
21. Low Red Center - “Historic Edition”
22. S U R V I V E - “White Clouds”
23. Future Blondes - “NIGHT ANALYSIS (Oppenheimer Analysis “Behind the Shades” RMX)”
24. Psychic Violence - “U is Moon”
25. How I Quit Crack - “Gone Away”
26. xix - “1111(v7)”

Sunday, May 2, 2010


After reading about Walter Gibbons for a good hour I found out this track was his last hit mix. It tweaks in dark patterns, has all the repetitive big drum hits Gibbons is known for and simply glows in bad ass grooves. I found the instrumental version way ahead of its time. I think the track, period, is a beautiful mixture of early hip hop and dark wave.

Strafe - Set It Off (Instrumental)

Monday, April 26, 2010

Charlie McAlister is exactly what I've needed. An injection of raw old timey country jams with a hint of schizophrenia. He's well loved, has a prolific last.fm profile, and today we are going to celebrate his disregard for high-budget productions. Long live the DIY.

Charlie McAlister - Mississippi Luau

Charlie McAlister - Neddie DuBois

Thursday, April 8, 2010

Keith Mansfield's "Night Bird"

I am so incredibly stoked to be sharing this track on ARAWA... I found out about it little over four or five months ago and was saddened by its lack of availability in mp3 form. But, LUCKILY I found it this morning. It's a library production by Syd Dale and Keith Mansfield from 1979. It truly oozes with seventies-campy-swagger. Lately I've been incredibly into "library" music... so I'll be sharing some more of my finds at later dates. I want to pay huge homage though to Cosmobells whom I got this rip from. The blogs out there ripping library records are truly amazing.

MP3: Keith Mansfield - Night Bird

Monday, March 22, 2010

Childlike warmth from Nilsson

Who can forget those memorable ethics from the seventies that promoted uniqueness, brotherly love and community. The remnants of such sentiments quickly eroded a decade later with the onset of the Reagan era, but gratefully youtube has time capsuled many artifacts from the hippie bubble.

In 1971 Harry Nilsson apparently wrote a story about a little boy who did not belong. In a town full of points he was the lonely sphere. The story is both delicate and touching for even those past the age of twelve. I found a lot of comfort in watching it in the first month of my moving to Portland. The meaning of the story is quite obvious, but nevertheless emotionally educational. The fable's promotion of acceptance and open community pretty much melts my heart.

Besides a touching story the soundtrack is wonderfully poignant. Nilsson's voice is both charming and solemn. The soundtrack features narration in between each track that makes you feel like you're on a trip, a small form of escapism. I recommend getting the whole soundtrack if possible!

Also, possibly the most rad acid quote ever:

"I was on acid and I looked at the trees and I realized that they all came to points, and the little branches came to points, and the houses came to point. I thought, 'Oh! Everything has a point, and if it doesn't, then there's a point to it.'" – Harry Nilsson

Harry Nilsson - Me and My Arrow
Harry Nilsson - Poli High

Sunday, March 21, 2010


I'm pleased to present my new video for //TENSE// featuring the single "Turn It Off'" available on MishkaNYC records later this year. Inspired by classic EBM videos of the past, //TENSE// was shot over an extended weekend in Dallas, Texas with friend and videographer Thomas from Blackmagic Rollercoaster


I had a blast this year in Austin! Saw everything I cared to see and then some. It was a total shock and surprise to finally meet OWLEYES and PEGASUS in person. Really warms my heart to meet these internet friends in the flesh. Ben Aqua's mega event Awthumfetht V was a total success and probably the best showcase I saw all week. Besides S U R V I V E superb performance in the early evening, //TENSE// , Psychic Violence and Bodytronix tore the roof off the mother by the end of the night. I wish I had more footage on my iphone, but I was busy working visuals on an awesome 50'x50' wall w/ an HD projector. Like a kid in a candy store I was ;)

I ended my week at the instore performance showcase at SWITCHED ON, Austin's new vintage electronics and keyboard repair shop. If you haven't seen or heard about this place, do yourself a favor and follow the link. Most likely the premiere vintage synth store in all of North America. This place is going to be a true mecca for keyboard nerds for years to come... AMAZING!!!

I've always wanted to see MEDIO MUTANTE perform and this was probably the best setting I could have hoped for. Perfect clear blue skies, 75 degrees, in front of the nexus of current electronic music appreciation, MM didn't disappoint. There were a few new tracks in the mix I wish I recorded but was running out of juice. Can't wait to hear the new EP which is soon to be released.

Lastly, my dear friends Eric Archer and Erich Ragsdale(TJ Laserphone) of Bodytronix absolutely blew minds with their all original circut bent techno/electro/acid set complete with modified drum machines and all. That customized 606 Drumatix with the added 808 kick was a complete monster. I feel our Dutch friends would be really stoked about these guys. I can't even act like I know what all is going on in all those boxes and wires, but it's still mighty impressive!!! Here's a clip from Eric's camera at Awthumfetht.

Phheew, it was alot of fun and exhausting being in ATX for SXSW. Glad I left when I did! After my last day with the 70 degree weather, the temperature dropped 40 degrees and I actually came home to snow in Dallas in mid-March. Anyone familiar with Texas weather knows that snow, any snow, especially this late in the year is just really wrong and totally bizarre. Long story short, I had a blast!!! I hope the video above does justice to the bands and the memories I made this year!!! I really can't wait to see everyone again!

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Noc Komety

Where would we be without Bumrocks? Without its mysterious branding and pushing of sounds long forgotten and misunderstood? Seems that the site, a gateway to places I'd never dared dream of before, is dead now, its creator taking their aesthetic away from the digital landscape of the interwebs and back to where it belongs. On vinyl.

Their first release brings Zambon, a polish DJ/producer to the editing decks, digging through obscure Polish disco, synth pop and rock and coming out with some absolute gems. Here's his amazing uptempo re-work of the slow burner above...

Budka Suflera- Noc Komety (Zambon Master Of Orion Edit)

and the original...

Budka Suflera- Noc Komety

Check out more samples and pre-order some vinyl here.

Wednesday, March 3, 2010

Friday, February 26, 2010

Yoko's orchestra of light

I fucking love Yoko Ono. She is perhaps one of the most under appreciated artists in the conventional media, but she is quite admired by many other radical artists such as Patti Smith, Lene Lovich and John Cage. Some of her films, perceived as quite dull, magnified the minute details of living moments... such as her films about a blinking eye or a fly. Supposedly the films were intended to be a protest against the archaic institutionalism of the art community. Showing the reality that exists instead of the often sectioned off masturbation of academic art. Yoko has never been one to settle in the image of life that the media or academia attempts to force us to accept.

It was quite a shock for me when I discovered her album "Approximately Infinite Universe." An album that mixed elements of proto punk, avante garde concepts, feminism annddddddd catchy pop riffs? Seriously. With quite poignant lyrics describing the difficulties of being a sensitive man in a production dominated land alongside songs about the intensity of frustrations felt by family problems I was in love. The album tingled my emotions while expanding my perceptions of life period(.)

Yoko Ono - I Felt Like Smashing My Face In A Clear Glass Window
Yoko Ono- Yang Yang

Saturday, February 13, 2010


Sooo... every time I see Reporter live I basically think... Reporter is the shit. Their energy is similar to nuclear fission with a touch of neon lights. Absolutely amazing sets that incorporate both synthesized and non-synthesized instruments to create a heavy rock and rolling dance aura. A sweet cacophony of buttered pleasure and primal rhythm. After contacting Reporter Alberta, the bassist, was kind enough to send me over a couple mp3s from their upcoming album and to answer two rather short questions. Boom.

So I know you guys were formerly part of a band called Wet Confetti, which has been described as art rock... (I kind of dislike categories?), but I was wondering what inspired the change. Reporter has a definitively dark texture to it, but you often add pretty radiant drum beats. What drove you guys to make a distinctly different sound, which is still greatly experimental.

We also strongly dislike categories. Its seems like every writer is trying to pigeonhole bands and if they can’t they tend to not talk about the bands music and choose to talk about trivial shit like their Myspace quotes or their ironic clothes instead.

The outfit change from Wet Confetti to Reporter just seemed like the right thing to do at the time. Wet Confetti was making dance music when folk music was all the rage. When Reporter first started we were attempting to do something new. It was still rock but we were trying to find ourselves. Then slowly but surely we slipped back into our old ways of creating dance music with Reporter, a lot less spastic this time around and sure enough we started getting a lot more attention than ever as dance music is finally widely accepted in this country. So I guess what we do well and naturally is finally in time with what is popular.

How do you feel playing and living in Portland contributes to the experimentation in your music?

I’m not sure how Portland contributes to our style of music. We love this city and I’m sure it does contribute as you are influenced by everything around you and there are so many great bands and people in this town. I think the abundance of cheap weed in this town is our biggest “influence.”

Reporter - Geronimo's Bones
Reporter - Clicksha

Wednesday, February 3, 2010

Belated Birthday

"Believing here, what you deserve to hear:
Your birthday as my own to me is dear...
But yours gives most; for mine did only lend
Me to the world; yours gave to me a friend"

We sort of forgot to celebrate our 3rd Anniversary which just recently came and went. Whoops. Oh well, better late than never I guess.

I want to start off by saying how grateful I am to Sean for creating this place and keeping it going. I can't believe another year has gone by, we're getting all grown up. Sniff. Sniff.... We’re also so pleased to be celebrating this special occasion with our new friend and caregiver, Bearbaby.
With each passing year, new and exciting adventures into sight and sound continue to unfold before us, seemingly richer and more fulfilling than the last. What I'm trying to say is, I can't wait to grow old with you. Love you guys!!! But enough with emotional ramblings, in keeping with our birthday tradition, a very special gift mix was commissioned to share with all of you. In previous years our dear friend JAZ has been generous with sharing some exclusive tracks with us. This year is no different, except this time we're proud to introduce you to TJ Laserphone, a long time friend and mutual digger of all things cosmic and gold.

I wish I could go into length about this brainiac space cadet, suffice to say, he's come a long way from his days communicating via slide whistle and robot hand gestures. Riding around in his musical cosmic cabbie during SXSW will always hold fond mem's for me. But I digress, Mr Laserphone is 1/2 of the brilliant DYI circut bending electro collage outfit, E^Squared. When he's not building drum machines out of suitcases and making audio collage with cut-up flexidiscs, he's scouring record bins for dusted 12" gems. This exclusive ARAWA Bday mix is a perfect example of the unique aural tapestry only TJ knows how to sew together. I asked him to describe his process and here's what he had to say:

This 113 minute mix starts off with a very nice "champagne synthesizer" effect realized by Edrupt as a toast to Arawa on its birthday! Cheers! ... And a lively party atmosphere strikes up on cue from the synthesizer by the Science Fiction Corporation! About half of the tracks are edits or reissues but its all vinyl mixed on an Allen & Heath Xone 32 (unique filter controls! ). There are many surprises and twists to this mix, going many different places somewhat carefreely. I had a crate of select records and chose two at the start of each side. Then I just went for it! I actually played several more tracks at the end before realizing the tape had stopped! The next mix block will be all Library and X-ploitation grooves so stay tuned!
~ Tape Jockey Laserphone

TJ Laserphone - Tape Mix Side 1
TJ Laserphone - Tape Mix Side 2
(playlist in comment section)
Arawa's Birthday Toaster Mix by TJ Laserphone
HD110 cassette mix processed thru RNC1173 compressor
additional FX provided by Edrupt's Manual Data Insertion Unit and a Pro 1 synthesizer!

I wanted to leave you with a few video clips of E^2 in action. The first clip is from a video jam session I did with them and Chad A. at the Maker Faire last year

and a great live shot from recent a performance in Austin

Saturday, January 30, 2010

Birthed from cupcakes

Omfg... I don't believe there is a more divine bliss than spending a Saturday afternoon hung over with Francois De Roubaix soundtracks and crackers. The overly blessed Roubaix spent nearly fourteen years gracing the public with his lovely jazz infused musical experimentation. I do not mean to diminish the supremely deep qualities of his compositions by saying they are "birthed from cupcakes," but I simply want to describe the giddy emotion that spills from each layer of his musical creations.

I think he must have experienced a quite deep happiness in his life since his songs tend to have an underlying layer of zen-like joy. Sadly he died in a tragic diving accident at the age of 36. I am still rather amazed at the catalog he left behind for such a "short" period of life. His passion and self taught style are incredibly lucid in the complexity, yet subtlety of his arrangements with a total projection of life and warmth.

"Le Samourai" is the theme song for the epic film of the same name by Jean-Pierre Melville. "Les Amis" is the theme song for an out of print french film that is apparently about pederasty. Awesome... both songs have really charmed me.

Francois De Roubaix - Le Samourai

Francois De Roubaix - Les Amis

Tuesday, January 26, 2010

Commune Prog

What do you get when you cross hippie commune dwellers and avante-gard prog? Amon Düül II of course. Perhaps some of the most inventive and inspired krautrockers, Amon Düül II spun an eclectic quilt of psychedelic sounds throughout their decadeish long career (1969-1981).

The jam above best embodies the experimental and raucous energy notable in their performances. I personally like the drugged-out people piled on top of each other next to Rainer Werner Fassbinder lucidly smoking cigarettes. "Mozambique" and "Jalousie" are featured on their 1973 release "Vive La Trance." Though I love both I must say "Jalousie" is ridiculously catchy in an eccentric way. It might be Renate Knaup's delivery, but the song feels like a perpetual climb up a crystal mountain. Highly recommended if you are interested in expanding your german rock consciousness.

Amon Düül II - Mozambique
Amon Düül II - Jalousie

Monday, January 25, 2010

Cherry 2010

Hard to believe I've been listening to Ed DMX in all his many forms for 13 years now. He's trucked on, outliving a herd of retro music revivals and micro genre explosions. Always retaining his sound and pushing it further with each release.

Rephlex just released Wave Funk this month, pulling together new material as well as 12" releases from the past year or so. And in typical fashion, it amazes. Eclectic, weird and dancey, machine music with soul and emotion.

DMX Krew- Cherry Ripe

Grab all seventeen tracks here...

Saturday, January 23, 2010

We're Gonna Make a Lil' Music

We are getting a lil' bit of sunshine up here in the Pacific Northwest for once in twenty nine days. I felt like Van Dyke Parks' "Discover America" is the perfect homage to bright heartbeats and American folkism to soundtrack my sunny day. This little ditty I've chosen to share has a blissful xylophone, punchy kick drum and transcendent background vocals. What more can one ask for in an eclectic seventies pop song? People justa singin' occapella...

"Occapella" came out in 1972 on Van Dyke Parks' "Discover America." The album is a steelband tribute to America's history. It's quite eccentric, but delightfully enjoyable.

Van Dyke Parks - Occapella

Friday, January 22, 2010

If She Moves You

Samantha Sang sings like some sort of forest creature. One quick and catlike, hard to catch or even see. Something that might sneak up should you fall asleep near its cool and cozy lair and whisper unremembered nothings in your ear. I can imagine waking up feeling fresh and somehow... smoother.

She's a strange voice helped to prominence by even stranger ones, The Bee Gees. On her second and most successful album Emotion she teamed with them multiple times with mixed results, Emotion being the highest end of the spectrum...

The weirdest thing is that my favorite song on the record, the one that keeps me comin back, doesn't feature them at all. No songwriting credits, no vocals, no nothin. But I swear they're in there. The melody, the backup vocals in the chorus... I swear it's them.

Tell me I'm not crazy here.

Samantha Sang- But If She Moves You

Thursday, January 21, 2010

Puppy Love

Call me smitten, but this has to be the best Rolling Stones cover ever. The heavy 4 on the floor rock-disco beat sounds as if it could've been an outtake straight from Some Girls. If you want to hear more from this band, there's an awesome review of the LP with link right here.

Hounds - Under My Thumb

The Sun and The Rainfall

Of which San Francisco has one right now. And I couldn't be any happier about it.

Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Looking Confused

Well, before I begin... I would just like to say I am deeeee-lighted to be a contributor for ARAWA. Not to circle jerk too much, but I have been quite a fan for some time now and I can't wait to christen my new membership with a creeped out video of Nancy and Lee. When I first watched this video I was completely put off by Nancy and Lee's seemingly coked out performances. Of course, once I read the performance was in Vegas I began to "see the light." There is an air of pale, ghostly struggle in their somewhat serious performance of a touchingly campy song. Nancy looks stoned and lost as she visually peruses the darkness under her spotlight. Lee Hazlewood just looks like he is struggling to sit in the chair as he clenches the microphone.

Regardless, the solemn atmosphere of the track doesn't lose any of its attraction with this doped out rendition. In fact, it makes the lyrics of the song all the more surreal. The track is a haunting tribute to being in love with an individual you know will die from coal mining. Beyond the romantic, it also includes the perspective of being the children of a coal miner. The songs melodramatic description of the characters' decision to live their lives, despite the morbid outcome, is surprisingly touching. The contrast between the almost subdued, dialogue style verses and the orchestrated push of the chorus give make the song an intensely surreal roller coaster. Coming from one city-slicker and one highly unconventional country artist the song adds a rather trippy aura to a traditionally more earthy musical style.

Nancy Sinatra & Lee Hazlewood - Arkansas Coal

ἀρχαῖος πτέρυξ

Urvogel otherwise known as Archaeopteryx is the earliest and most primitive bird known to man. Coincidentally, it's also the title for one of my favorite jams off I Signori Della Galassia's 1979 cosmic rock masterpiece Iceman. Big ups to 36-15-Moog for sharing the 320kbps full length and for turning me onto this amazing space disco album!!

I Signori Della Galassia -Archaeopteryx


When three lines are drawn in such a way, at perfect and corresponding angles, it makes a shape The strongest shape in nature, one nearly impossible to topple, the triangle. I'd like to introduce ARAWA's third line drawn in the digital sand, Bearbaby. Already a long time blaugh veteran having spent two and a half years over at Disco Workout, I've always looked forward to her selections and words. She's a lady with impeccable taste and a penchant for the strange and awesome which is something that will fit in perfectly around here with us weirdos.

Welcome Bearbaby!

And a track to celebrate new partnerships and friends from the late and great, Jacno...

Jacno- Triangle

Saturday, January 16, 2010

Through The Valley

Like a quick snip to restraints unseen and previously unknown, listening to Sinoia Caves' The Enchanted Persuaded untethers me. An album sometimes alternately gorgeous and unsettling by one Jeremy Schmidt, member of the incredible band Black Mountain. It pulls you through door after door, portal after portal, drum machines and vocoders smashing up against dusty acoustic guitars, long passages of pulsing Goblin-esque synthscapes and droning keys. And there in the center of it all beats a warm heart, Through the Valley.

Sinoia Caves- Through the Valley

Buy it buy it buy it.

Saturday, January 2, 2010


Where did our future go? Here we are, casually living in years romanticized and imagined for centuries and yet, where are our flying cars and skateboards? Our domed cities and floating islands? Our robot friends and cybernetic arms? We're still here, still tethered to this one planet, plain and dimension, our race only seconds from where we started on Carl Sagan's cosmic calendar, still working away, still loving, still crying, still dreaming, still changing. I guess it says something about the power of our imaginations that we still aren't as far as we imagined we would be right? Well, in this new year, I propose a toast to all of us, a wish that we all keep moving and working towards the future we want. It'll come.

Ganymed- Future World