Iain Cameron's Diary
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2010-05-17 - 7:01 a.m.

On Saturday night I watched The Breakfast Club - yet again – apparently its now regarded as a classic – an unusual film because it was shot in sequence. It must be the performances that make it work on repeated viewings.

Having just acquired so much of my music of the last ten years or more on a single DVD is thought provoking and very handy. It sounds better for the most part than I remember it. I had thought that I preferred Serious Music to Plundafonix because I managed to sell more of SM. But I had forgotten completely about some of the tracks on the second CD – there is a progression between the three essays in terms of increasing radicalism of course. A lot of Plundafonix is done with outboard boxes many of which are now misplaced or given away.

Talking of which, I have been reading up on the Casio GZ50M which I think must be in a garage on the Sussex coast. It has 128 GM voices and a few drumkits. The voices are early wavetable. There are no filters but there are 8 effects – although you can only use one effect at a time. I have seen one on the net for £45 which is about what I paid for mine in a funny little shop on the Surrey/Sussex border. Basically its small and a lot of it still sounds good, I think, which is why I wish I had it here.

I enjoyed watching Thin Lizzy on the BBC2 guitarists of the 70s review – way better than AC/DC or Johnny Winter. Laurence mailed about Badiou and I replied – this usefully pushed me round the learning loop. The Weekend Players hit the spot again.

I have been reassessing the Zoom 1201 rack reverb unit which I used on some of this music. It used a lot more presets than was usual for devices of this kind. The presets were oriented towards different applications – strings, percussion, voice etc – and within each preset there was plenty of parameter variation. Someone told me it was a bit noisy but I can’t hear that at all on the recordings but maybe I would if I had better monitors. I think even a £100 dedicated reverb unit may have better properties than the normal software plug-in.

I used to have a rack of four units – besides the reverb there was a compressor which I never really found my way round, an enhancer to liven up the top and bottom of the mix and a Behringer multi-effects device which was intended to enhance synth patches. I do know where they are - I think I found them a good home.

Bear picked a live acoustic version of Joe Jackson’s Different For Girls which made a nice change. I listened to Miles in Europe from 1963. The second great 5tet is almost formed except George Coleman is playing tenor. No new tunes but the rhythm section have already started to push the old ones to a new level. Some reviewers say Coleman never played better than here.

To help explain my musical 1970s to Dick, I found the Independent obituary for Steve Pheasant online still – which led to an entry for Nick Brown in Spinprofiles. Odd that the departed members of the bebop 5tet are commemorated online. Actually I think you can find the living ones online too. I came across a 2CD retrospecive of Transatlantic Records with a lot of half forgotten names on it eg Decameron, Amazing Blondell. A curiosity rather than inspiring – its obvious which were the inspiring artists – then and now.

It seems Aquanote may be neo-soul.

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