last year the ssgs were in very regular and ongoing email conversations about music, and these proved to be one of the main sources of inspiration for getting the blog going. anyway, today we all got into a conversation about oslo, one of the hottest labels of 2008. simply put, dave is a big fan, pete is somewhere in between, chris is not convinced and cam hasn't heard enough to come to a judgment yet. we thought some of the discussion we had might be of interest (and/or amusement), so i've put the transcript of our conversation below. i can't be bothered editing it, so it is definitely much more rough and ready than our usual posts.
let's see how this experiment goes. it may work, it may not. either way, feedback is much appreciated so we know whether to post something like this again in the future. (by the way, this is a picture from my visit to oslo. seemed a good visual description on my take).
seriously. how friggin awesome is this Oslo? i've been listening to nothing but their EPs for the past 3 days... the last time i've been so heavily hooked on something was probably liars or Mu... i can never recall being so heavily into one particular techno label or artist.
chris i know you don't like them but how about cam and pete?
i love all their stuff but i'd have to say my fave tracks are "It Ain't Music" by Vera & Federico Molinari and "Enerverende" by Federico Molinari... the Mara Trax release is the best EP.
come on lets hear some oslo love!
The Johnny D EP, surely. By far the best. I like the Mara, but it's 'junk food' - but good DJ tools, for sure.
Dave, your passion for 'dry funk' never ceases to amaze.
Brinkmann must have affected a blood transfusion via the headphones, or something.
oslo is very appropriately named. it is boring, just like the city.
dont like the johnny d stuff at all, actually. there is a livepa of his here.
havent listened to it yet, though.
dry funk is awesome... always has been and always will be. i've always loved how good electronic producers can extract stuff like funk, soul or rock via something which should be so cold and emotionless. just wish more people outside of Maurice Fulton could extract some punk.
the Guillaume EP is pretty good but probably my least fave on the label. it's the only release that doesn't 100% fit the oslo sound either. but yeah it's good and i'd imagine you'd really like it.
the first Johnny D EP is brilliant! the 2nd one is good too.
btw i don't really get why it's referred to as "dry" funk. it's really no different to the post punk/funk that came out of New York in the early 80s... stuff like The Contortions, ESG, Talking Heads... it's an extention of "white boy funk" more than anything else... and also pushing the rigid electro funkiness Kraftwerk started... which was then embraced by the rnb/hip-hip scene and is now being reclaimed by germans. actually i'd say the futuristic rnb by The Neptunes and to a lesser extent Timbaland has a lot in common with this so-called "dry funk" sound.
Definitely, but I feel it's even dryer, IMHO. Brut de brut. Neptunes/Timbaland is moistened by the syrupy vocal harmonies and strident trance synth chords, but w/ Oslo it's
like the title of that Guido Schneider track
'As Dry as I Can'
guido. now there is a guy who is waaaaaaaaaay too dry for my tastes. he is kind of like the musical equivalent of that freeze dried food they give astronauts...
Yep, and one can acquire a taste for that, too....
i really don't get how oslo is dryer than neptunes... particularly when they get really electronic on tracks like Drop It Like It's Hot or on The Clipse album. i dunno maybe i'm immune to dryness.
chris if you've only heard the A on the new johnny d then you can't really judge him because it's quite different to all his other work.
who's guido btw?
if i find the first Soul Centre album brinkmann did to be the funkiest electronica ever then i must have a taste for the dryness... what's an example of funky electronica that is the opposite of dry? like electronic wet funk? and not the kind that cheats by heavily sampling funk tracks or using live instrumentation
guido schneider. you love the recent ep he did on cadenza (with galluzi and someone else). not my thing, though.
so is it possible to make funky electronic music without the use of disco/funk samples, vocals or live instrumentation?
Is <-> this a stupid question (?/.)
"Funk is what you don't play." - George Clinton
this is funking boring. haha. i am almost as funny as dave.
i'm serious! i just don't understand why you guys are referring to this olso stuff as "dry" funk... how is it different to other funk and why does it need to be differentiated by referring to it as dry? i honestly see this stuff to be just as funky as traditional funk. it sure makes me want to dance more
i think what they mean is that it is supposed to be funky, but it is actually shit and boring.
Ha! That's some Chris clarity for you.
i haven't been all that interested in discussing techno lately but oslo has sorta got me in the mood because it's exciting and fresh to my ears. and i was curious as to why you other guys haven't been sharing that excitement considering you are into mountain people / rozzo which would have suggested you'd be into it.
Like I said, I like Johnny D's first one, and one or two of the tracks on Mara.
But Rozzo's 'I wish I was a cat' is the best of all these by far.
I think the thing is also that Chris and I do research and listen to sets all day, which means we hear tracks a lot and therefore sounds get played out in a matter of weeks, rather than months.
Voracious appetites need fresh meets for good sausages.
To be honest, I haven't heard much of the Oslo stuff at all ... so I really haven't formed an opinion yet.
i only heard oslo about a month ago for the first time so yeah i'm late to get into them... and that was only one EP. i got 4 of their EPs over the weekend so that's why i'm excited now.
Oslo engages some people, sometimes. But Chris.... none of the time?
i am over exaggerating (as i often do). oslo is ok. but i dont like the johnny d. and the federico and vera mix i heard i didnt like. same with mara trax. it just sounds very derivative to me. and watered down house music.
deep house lite: that's oslo for you.
ok so i'll try this all again... just to clarify, i'm asking because i'm curious not because i want ot convince you all that oslo is the absolute shit.
the most confusing thing is why Rozzo/Serafin get the thumbs up while oslo is seen as the lesser. in my opinion both are sensational. and i can't really hear why someone would prefer one of them much more over the other. but obviously people can and do! so why is it?
and why is Hello? Repeat! and oslo seen as dry? to my ears it's the most dynamic and exciting techno out there... yeah it's very clicky and technical but it just sounds so fun... at the moment i switch between berghain and this HR/oslo sound. and i turn to the oslo when i'm thinking "hmmmm i want ot hear something FUN now!" and it makes me grin and get all giddy. so it just seems to odd to me that others tag it as dry. it's totally cool that you do but it's really mind
boggling to me. it's like calling Dettmann "chilled" or Tiesto "intellectual" and i'm not exaggerating. it really doesn't compute.
so please explain!
i dont think dry is meant in a negative sense (or so, only weakly). for me, with hello?repeat, i just can't connect. it is good for 5-10 minutes but not long after that i am wanting to switch it off. as for oslo, i wouldnt describe as dry, just not that good. i mean it is fun, but but but...
I meant 'dry' more as a technique/technical thing.
They use very short sounds with not much reverb.
On an FX tone pot (such as reverb) that would be dry/wet.
So, 'cos they use very 'dry' sounds as well (metallic, mineral, wooden... all percussive elements that would be dry and inorganic if they were physical objects)
I call it 'dry funk'
[and that is where we are up to...]