The record sleeves for Basic Channel and their various output have always had a nice aesthetic. Simple, sleek and elegant. It doesn't hurt that the music is killer as well.
I own the helmet below, which I like to wear when listening to these records. For no reason other than it just feels right.
Basic Channel is a dub techno production team and record label, composed of Moritz Von Oswald and Mark Ernestus, that originated in Berlin, Germany in 1993. The duo released a number of vinyl-only tracks under various aliases, each of which employed their signature brand of dissonant dub techno. The nine original releases were each primarily identified as Basic Channel productions by their catalogue numbers, as the Basic Channel logo on the label became more distorted and unreadable with each subsequent release.
The duo set up a studio in Berlin on Paul-Lincke-Ufer, in a building which was eventually to house Mark Ernestus’ distributing company and shop Hard Wax, and the label's mastering studio Dubplates & Mastering, set up to ensure a desired dynamic quality for the vinyl.
The Basic Channel imprint ceased business in 1995 (apart from two releases almost a decade later that were originally issued on Carl Craig's Planet E label), but were followed by a string of similar labels. Among the most important were Chain Reaction, which released non-Von Oswald/Ernestus productions and helped launch the careers of dub-influenced minimal techno producers such as Monolake and Porter Ricks; Basic Replay, which specialises in reggae and dancehall re-issues; Main Street, for house-related releases; and Burial Mix and Rhythm & Sound, which saw the duo's sound move away from the Detroit blueprint and closer to vocal-lead dub and reggae. Their With The Artists album, released as Rhythm & Sound and featuring celebrated reggae and dancehall vocalists such as Sugar Minott, featured in the top 50 records of the year for 2003 in The Wire magazine.
Basic Channel also run a comprehensive programme of re-issues for the American reggae label Wackies.
People who grew up in the tri-state area, mostly in New York and especially in New Jersey are familiar with Uncle Floyd. He was the host of The Uncle Floyd Show that ran on New Jersey Network and it was basically the coolest show on earth. It had puppet shows, all sorts of weird NJ legends, like R. Steevie Moore (Ariel Pink's main influence) and music guests like The Ramones, The Misfits, Cyndi Lauper, David Johansen, Chubby Checker, Dr. Demento, Pussy Galore, The Dead Boys and so on. It was like the best of WFMU if WFMU were on televsion.
Anyways, he also had Crash Course in Science on his show, who were a late 70's Philadelphia band that used kitchen appliances and such as instruments. The first video is of them on Uncle Floyd Show and the bottom videos are their "hit" tracks Cardboard Lamb and Flying Turns.
If you like this you Crash Course in Sciene you will almost definitely like Die Doraus & Die Marinas | Non Band | Space | The Droids | Joachim Witt | Edgard Varese & Le Corbusier and if you made it this far you should also probably check Kill For Total Peace! because they are the best band out right now... hands down... bar none.
Does No Ordinary Monkey make the best flyers? Definitely.
Edgard Varese (1883-1965) was a French-born composer who was an innovator in the use of electronic music equipment. Varese's chaotic musical style has influenced later composers (John Cage & Karlheinz Stockhausen) and rock musicians (Frank Zappa & Chicago) alike.
Production credits on various albums include: Bernard Sumner of New Order, Ian Curtis of Joy Division and the late Martin Hannett, a man responsible for a lot of good records.
I was on Justin Barlett's site and noticed this great documentary on sythn pop that I never heard of. The doc is well worth your time and I've included some images from Justin's site to help get you over there. If you like doom / black metal. It's basically a must.
"Synth Britannia" is a fairly in-depth documentary about the British electronic scene which began in the late 1970's and had it's heyday in the mid 1980's (although many bands are still going strong today). It was produced by the BBC which came out a couple of months ago and has been floating around on Torrent Sites, but I think watching it on youtube is a bit easier. The film begins with how bands like Kraftwerk and post-punkers Joy Division influenced many of the musicians involved in OMD, Human League, Cabaret Voltaire, and even Throbbing Gristle.
Soon after, electronic music gained a small following in the UK and many other bands such as Depeche Mode, Heaven 17, Gary Numan, and the Pet Shop Boys mutated those primitive electronic beats into a much more digestible and danceable form of pop music and grew a worldwide fanbase.
"Synth Britannia" features interviews with Gary Numan, Martin Gore (Depeche Mode), Stephen Morris (Joy Division/New Order), Daniel Miller (Mute Records/Silicon Teens) and many more.
If you are remotely interested in electronic synthpop/electro at all - make sure to check it out!
Parts 1-8 (part 9 is blocked in the US) are on youtube, the link below has subtitles in Spanish, but has the entire documentary.