Perfect, Beautiful Music for Free From Erased Tapes [2014 in Review]

Erased Tapes was an endlessly inspiring label in 2014. With a singular, understated focus on quality and music orbiting the keyboard, the acoustic, and minimal post-classical introspection, they were a calming counterpart to the year’s steroid-pumped festival commercialism. And first and foremost, they were about records — not fancy design accessories, not “throw everything at a wall and see what sticks” experiments in distribution. (There’s a place for that, yes, but a record label about records was nonetheless refreshing.) And Nils Frahm was a consistent star amidst all of this, a favorite live performer cutting across genres, wrangling keys electronic …


The Best Thing I Bought This Year: DUBS Acoustic Filters [2014 in Review]

The most sophisticated, most important music and sound instrument of 2014 is – your hearing. But the best hearing protection is simply the one you’ll always use. And that’s why DUBS are the best product of 2014. There are great hearing protection products out there, and for professional applications like touring, something spendy may well worth be considering. But you may have decided you don’t have the time to get your ears molded, or they’re too expensive to buy, or you aren’t using them because you’re afraid you’ll lose them. (I think I know as many professional musicians who have …


52 Tracks in 52 Weeks: Starting 2014 for Producers

You say you want a resolution? Calendar years may be largely arbitrary deadlines, but arbitrary deadlines can be a boon to creativity. Online community Weekly Beats is again launching a project for producers that invites them to upload new music tracks every week for the year. By the end of 2014, it means each artist may have released as many as 52 tracks, ranging between about one and fifteen minutes. The weekly goal seems a nice one, too: daily goals are fairly punishing, but doing one a week is enough to keep up some consistency. If you want to join …