live pa based in tucson Az
live pa based in tucson Az
simply put, the music I make will tend to get lost in that little gray area between ambient and dub techno. indeed, ambient dub techno is considered a genre by some, but for me there is a sweet spot that straddles between ambient and techno, and can be a tad elusive to nail. typically, a set or track will mostly be ambient, or squarely techno, maybe with hints of ambient.
with that in mind, my music will wander about, never getting to a point directly. this circuitous structure of the set will take the listener on a journey in dub, sometimes with detours of acid house, sometimes stopping for a breath of drones. that these live sets circuitously create the vibe of the room, the listener then will hopefully come to enjoy the journey, forgetting all about the destination.
it can be fairly said that the synth, the analog four by elektron, is the originator and the soul for much of the music. by creating much of the harmonic, pitched sound, the synth sculpts the focal points for the mind. another way of thinking of it: while the drum machine creates beats for the feet, the synth creates aural interest for the journey of the mind and spirit. the analog four work is sent to two external pedals, the strymon el capistan and the strymon blue sky pedals. each of these pedals add incredible warmth and variation, with tape-style echo, reverb and shimmer.
for me, the sequencer is a kind of mixer. it becomes the heart of my rig, responsible for channeling, recording, and looping sounds from the synth and drum machine. the octatrack by elektron is a powerful machine, capable of also adding effects, as well as layering many sounds all at once.
the elektron rytm is capable of so much more than many drum machines out there, and may never reach its full potential if assigned to ambient dub techno. even so, the sounds from this machine are more than appropriate to help blur the lines between ambient and techno. while the rytm is out of commission, the korg volca beats (also analog) will be in use.
these three machines, elektron's analog four, rytm, and octatrack, along with two strymon effects pedals, comprise my entire rig. many artists opt to add keyboards or multiple synthesizers and modules. i wanted to keep my rig as compact as possible to allow for a practical solo live act. basically, the synth and pedals create the harmonic aspects, including bass lines. the synth sounds are sent to octatrack, but are combined with rhythms from the drum machine when they are sent to the octatrack for "processing". the octatrack will act as a mixing board, recording sampled loops, and fading out sounds when the journey must continue.
circuitous vibes is a live act by Dave Balderrama, residing in Tucson AZ.
From training in classical piano and music theory and composition, to performance as pianist and keyboardist in a couple of college bands, I have a wide variety of musical experiences over the years. I even experimented with electronica and improvisation in a noise band. Additionally, I have a wide interest in music, from classical and jazz, to bossa nova and traditional bluegrass. But it was my introduction to techno and house in the mid-1990’s that really captured my imagination and attention. Techno redefined the meaning of sound for me, and that made all the difference.
After being introduced to electronic music at the Family Affair in Ohio back in 1995, I attended numerous parties in Detroit until the late 1990’s. I was completely swept away with the techno, acid, dub, minimal, drum and bass, jungle, and deep house that I heard during the “Second Wave” of Detroit musicians and DJs. The venues were mysterious and questionably legal, the lighting was poor (one strobe, plus too much fog), and the sound was so immense as to rattle the bones and nearly alter the heart rate. And I loved it all.
It is from these experiences in Detroit during the 1990’s that I attempted, as DJ Moores Park, to curate the sound and overall experience of what was being played at the time.
After taking a break from musical performance for a number of years, and eventually settling in Tucson AZ, I re-discovered electronic music, and rekindled a love for Detroit techno and house. After collecting music and some equipment, in 2009 I began working on DJing, honing technique and a style. After nearly 5 years of this work, I began to step out into the Tucson community with several performances in 2015/6. As DJ Moores Park, I focused on building a contemporary soundtrack that resembles the backdrop for the Detroit electronic dance scene in the 1990s.
And now comes the time for a different approach. As circuitous vibes, I will create a sound entirely my own, or so I hope. I am not so naive to think that anything is original (search: John Cage 4'33"), especially when you layer pads on a 4/4 kick drum. But the sound that I create in a live set will be less indicative of Detroit, less similar to a European house party, and not so much in fitting with the "Tucson sound", although I hope to draw much inspiration from the land that I live in.
As circuitous vibes, this is my return to playing instruments, composing and improvising live. Without using others' music, and without the assistance of other musicians. In this setting, I return to a true creative process, marrying classical background in composition and performance with electronica and dance music.