Now Playing Tracks

I’ve had an unbelievable reaction to this latest in the sessions series so far, with over 1000 plays on Soundcloud, thanks so much for the support!! This mix in the sessions series takes a trip down the dark alleyway, veering a little left field of the usual groovy laid-back vibes of late, and heading towards a more bass-line driven sound that we tend to instinctively head for later at night.

1. Tomi Chair - Over You (Donald Wilborn’s Too Late Remix)
2. Dosem - Chase The Link (Original Mix)
3. Erik Hagleton - The After After
4. Cristoph - On The Inside
5. Marc Marzenit - Perron
6. Jay Cee - Trace Back (Doctor Groove Remix)
7. Jay Cee - Trace Back (Original Mix)
8. Claude VonStroke - Eye I Eye
9. Ecco - Switch (Manuel Palmitesta Remix)
10. Joeski & Harry Romero - Choose One
11. Steve Sai - Stardust (John Tsamis Remix)
12. CamelPhat - The Act (Extended Mix)
13. Moll - Anonymous
14. Layo & Bushwacka! - Delta Ahead
15. Shadow Child, Eli & Fur - Seeing Is Believing

Hey all, a couple of months back I provided some thoughts on the Sennheiser HD8’s for Lachlan Likes A Thing, and have been receiving some great feedback so far. It’s a lengthy video, but I provide some insight on how to think about purchasing DJ headphones, and helping make sure you find a pair that suits you best as well.

Be sure to check out Lachlan’s webpage over here and enjoy!

One of our favourite gigs in a while :) This is the liveset from myself and DJ Yenga recorded this weekend for La Famiglia at the Burdekin in Sydney. We were closing the mainroom after headliner Deptune laid down an epic set. With the dugout going super deep with Aidan James and Aaiste, we brought a more upfront sound to the mainroom :) Loved every second of it!!

Thanks for the awesome bunch at La Famiglia for having us: be sure to checkout their weekly Saturdays at the burdekin for guaranteed good technoes, house and a great crowd every time :)

Download links are just below :)

https://soundcloud.com/ronmaran/ron-maran-yenga-live-la

Simon Cowell and SFX reveal ‘Ultimate DJ’ TV show is happening

Remember when we were making jokes about this sort of thing happening? Well time to bite our tongues and brace ourselves. I’m all for encouraging new people who are passionate about their music  to get involved in DJ’ing, but this just seems like more reality TV bandwagoning.

Launching initially online, the music event competition will feature producer-challenges where DJs will be invited to submit recordings for fan voting via social media. From there, the competition will move on to live challenges and performances in SFX event venues, integrating next-generation production design from SFX partner companies.”


From FB to UMF! Maybe I’m being a little harsh on this, but I felt that even more mainstream competitions have tended to at least be in the right ballpark. In Australia, Your Shot (
http://www.yourshot.com.au) has divided the opinions of many in the scene. Ultimately it does seem to have some talent component, as some of the people who have done well in the competition have gone on to do some pretty awesome things (Tigerlily went from regular local to touring with Tiesto in the space of a few years), and you need more than just a loyal bunch of friends, sex appeal or rich connections to pull that stuff off, so props to her.

So we can try to hope that this show doesn’t completely flood the DJ world with more people doing it for the status and the chicks instead of the music, but somehow I don’t see that happening. In the meantime, the rest of the DJ world (who actually gives a shit about the music and not the “celebrity” we are unlikely to ever achieve anyway) can continue doing good things and playing music they care about. The punter hopefully realises that it is the DJ’s plugging away, supporting the other DJ’s and venues rather than viewing them as “competition” that they should be going to visit and support instead of the “one hit wonders” of the DJ world.

Finally, am I the only one that has the urge to punch Simon Cowell in the face? 

To all the Haters of other DJs who don’t do what they do.

I get really tired of people hating on other DJ’s and music producers playing music that “is mainstream”, “not good”, “annoying”, “trend riding” etc.

Most of these people are new and finding their way through the ranks of the music scene trying to find their groove. It would be silly to expect even great DJs to stick to one micro-niche of music to play their whole lives. Some of the greatest DJs to date have moved inside and between genres, and evolved with the times. That doesn’t necessarily mean they’ve just moved from melodic trance to electro bangers.

I’d hardly call my 5 years “experienced”, but it took me time to explore different genres, and I honed my craft playing stuff I wouldn’t play now to crowds that didn’t care less, and getting people moving is much of what makes a solid DJ, rather than what micro-niche it is. The Carl Cox of 1994 is very different to the Carl Cox of 2014, and rightly so. Same could be said for Armin Van Buuren, Paul Van Dyk, Richie Hawtin, and countless other pioneering DJs. Can you imagine if Tiesto’s “Da Joker” alias was the one that took off instead? Would that make him any less of a DJ?

I’ve seen friends who started DJing with borderline pop explore, search and eventually find music which they become passionate for, and they evolve, hone, iterate and refine to improve their skill during that journey. Who are we to write off someone’s career for their current musical choices?

I care when people fake their craft, don’t give a shit about it, or lack drive to improve and innovate. A skilled and passionate DJ is a pleasure to watch, regardless of what they are playing because they care, and they are always willing to improve their skill. A good DJ is a good DJ, even when it’s not the specific 217bpm nudiscoambientdeeptrancespeedcore 3/4 signature tunes you decided was your path going forward.

So the next time you try and deride their choice of music, think instead to encourage them to explore all aspects of this wonderful world of music, and provide them an opportunity to make up their own damn mind. If they still want to play 217bpm nudiscoambientdeeptrancespeedcore, then give it a listen and maybe help them with their dj’ing rather than trying to convert them to your given genre-church. 

This is a live recording from a set I done for LUSH last month. Had a blast playing there, being nice and early gave me a chance to go a little deeper and moodier. Also had my first play with the amazing Allen and Heath Xone DB2, which I’ll do a write up on shortly. Thanks to the team at LUSH for having me, and props to all the DJs and peeps who came down for a cranking evening of tunes. You can catch the other sets from the night here:

https://soundcloud.com/lush-sounds

CDJ-ing in 2014: A Brief Guide to Pioneer’s Nexus Line-up

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At the end of 2013, Pioneer managed to pull a sneaky release in the form of the CDJ-900NXS. A great update to Pioneer’s 2nd in line to the CDJ throne, it has considerably blurred the lines between the 900NXS and 2000NXS. Perhaps more importantly, it has made the gap between the 900/2000NXS and the 850/350 siblings quite large. Let’s take a look firstly at the NXS brothers, the 900 and 2000.

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Headphone on the go – Cans that won’t make you look like you are in an invisible DJ booth

 

I think it is fair to say that not everyone wants to carry around a set of full size cans on a regular basis, with few exceptions (You will have to pry my HD25’s from my dead hands!). With the increased amount of travelling recently, I figured it was a good opportunity to try out a few more travel friendly alternatives, and came across a fair few nice ways to keep your ears happy and wallet not empty! Here are some of my favourites: 

Audio Technica ATH-CKM300

Found well under $50 in the right places, these IEMs are a great little bargain. Coming in a range of colours and variants with smartphone remote and inline volume control, they have a surprisingly full sound considering their price. Plenty of low end and quite crisp in the highs, they present a fun sound well suited to the tastes of the typical music junkie. They isolate well and come with a nice little carry case and a comfortable array of different ear tip sizes, right up there with the Sony hybrid tips.

I picked up my pair in Japan, and regularly find myself taking these instead of my considerably more expensive headphones for the work journey. Well worth the price!

SoundMagic PL-50

At around $80, SoundMagic provide a nice little introduction into the Balanced Armature driver style IEM, which present a more relaxed and balanced sound which is great for long listening sessions. They lack a bit of bass compared to the above CKM-300, but make up for it in the smooth delivery of the whole frequency range.

SoundMagic provide both rubber and foam tips here, and the foam tips in particular are great for comfort. Another nice advantage is the ear-hooks to help reduce the microphonics of the cable, and combined with the tiny size of the actual drivers, these make for a discreet and great sounding headphone.

Audio Technica ES7

First off, these headphones probably are not for someone looking for a subtle way to keep your ears happy. One of the main features of the ES7 is the hyper polished metal ear cups, which look great but might be a little eye-candy heavy for those who don’t like to make a fashion statement with their headphones.

Once you put them on though, you realise the attention grabbing looks are backed by attention getting sound. Great for those who like their sound a little bassy, these over ear headphones are quite comfortable, and present a polished overall sound with some extra kick on the low end. The only downside is the noise isolation is not so great, but this isn’t always a bad thing when you are roaming the city streets, and need to be aware of cars and sirens around you.

Although replaced now by the Autio Technica ES-700, you still can find these online for about $120, making these a nice entry into the higher end over-ear headphones while still staying very stylish. 

Hopefully this proves useful for those who are in the market for some quality headphones without breaking the bank, and without having to stand out as much as the majority of audiophiles rocking full size over ear headphones on the train!

 

 

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