Archive for September, 2009

The GaGa Chronicles

Posted in Commentary with tags on September 15, 2009 by softsynth

When we set out to blog, there was a conscious decision to only share info on the artists Softsynth feels positively about (barring negative reviews and the like, which are fair comment), and not to spend time shitting on those artists that don’t meet with the music snob criteria always lurking underneath the surface. The only exception to that rule was a couple of cheap shots taken at Lady GaGa when discussing a burgeoning ubiquity of electronic artists suddenly on the charts. And full disclosure, GaGa’s schtick is exhaustively tiring and her early success with “Poker Face” represented just another chart-single-by-the-numbers horror. And yet. And yet… Continue reading

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Gary Numan + NIN = Perfection

Posted in News with tags , on September 11, 2009 by softsynth

Quick link, but so worth it. Gary Numan, one our favourite artists of all time, joins Nine Inch Nails, one of our favourite bands of all time performing Softsynths very, very favourite song of all time, the one that started the electro-love, “Cars”. Kick ass version too.

Check it out:

Review: Imogen Heap – Ellipse

Posted in Review with tags , on September 7, 2009 by softsynth

A recent review of this album saw a comparison with Sarah MacLaughlin. All due respect to Sarah but – ridiculous. Heap for better or for worse remains one of our most eccentric and wholly original artists we have. We’ve seen her compared to Tori Amos, Kate Bush, and any number of Lillith Fair-ian lady singers and all miss the mark badly. A breathy delivery and a distinctly feminine ethos does not lump her into a camp with any of the above (and that’s no slight to the above artists, Bush and Amos are among our favourite artists, but we love them differently than we do Heap who comes from an entirely different starting place). Softsynth first laid eyes on her when flipping the television channels and breezed by the Tonight Show (and in the dark Leno days that breezing was all one could reasonably be expected to do re. the Tonight Show), and we caught a glimpse of a unique looking woman all by her lonesome playing a bank of synths. That’s enough to get us to stop at the best of times, but she was performing a captivating version of “Goodnight and Go” and we were hooked. Not familiar with her first album I Megaphone or her work with Frou Frou her album, Speak for Yourself was something of a revelation, a glimpse of a top-notch songwriter with a compelling world view and a take on electronic music that was a joy. Continue reading

The Pitchfork 200 – the electronic files

Posted in Commentary, News with tags on September 4, 2009 by softsynth

It remains our humble job to take major music events and squeeze out the electronic components for the edification and general obsessive geekness of the true electro fan, from the Grammys to the Mercury Prize noms and now to the Pitchfork top 200 of the oughts (they expanded the scope to include the “top 500” but the honorable mentions can wait for another day). Now Pitchfork has always had their special favourites across various genres and they show up en masse here but overall it’s a rock solid list that’s pretty hard to argue with (there are some Softsynth would add and others that made us scratch our heads a bit but all in all a list so prescient it’s almost obvious). Even in the electronic entries and they are many (if in some cases obvious if you follow Pitchfork with some regularity – again, they have their favourites and broadcast them to the heavens). Continue reading