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‘Street Spirit’ is our purest song, but I didn’t write it. It wrote itself. We were just its messengers; its biological catalysts. Its core is a complete mystery to me, and, you know, I wouldn’t ever try to write something that hopeless. All of our saddest songs have somewhere in them at least a glimmer of resolve. ‘Street Spirit’ has no resolve. It is the dark tunnel without the light at the end. It represents all tragic emotion that is so hurtful that the sound of that melody is its only definition. We all have a way of dealing with that song. It’s called detachment. Especially me; I detach my emotional radar from that song, or I couldn’t play it. I’d crack. I’d break down on stage. That’s why its lyrics are just a bunch of mini-stories or visual images as opposed to a cohesive explanation of its meaning. I used images set to the music that I thought would convey the emotional entirety of the lyric and music working together. That’s what’s meant by ‘all these things you’ll one day swallow whole’. I meant the emotional entirety, because I didn’t have it in me to articulate the emotion. I’d crack…
Our fans are braver than I to let that song penetrate them, or maybe they don’t realise what they’re listening to. They don’t realise that ‘Street Spirit’ is about staring the fucking devil right in the eyes, and knowing, no matter what the hell you do, he’ll get the last laugh. And it’s real, and true. The devil really will get the last laugh in all cases without exception, and if I let myself think about that too long, I’d crack.
I can’t believe we have fans that can deal emotionally with that song. That’s why I’m convinced that they don’t know what it’s about. It’s why we play it towards the end of our sets. It drains me, and it shakes me, and hurts like hell every time I play it, looking out at thousands of people cheering and smiling, oblivious to the tragedy of its meaning, like when you’re going to have your dog put down and it’s wagging its tail on the way there. That’s what they all look like, and it breaks my heart. I wish that song hadn’t picked us as its catalysts, and so I don’t claim it. It asks too much. I didn’t write that song.
This is a great trick for programming unique drums, from Pat Cupo at Dubspot. Not only is it super useful, but it really speaks to the flexibility and depth of Ableton Live.
Check out my new Ableton Live tutorial on using follow actions to create glitch patterns. In the description of the video are links to my other videos about exactly how to setup follow actions, in case you’re beginning from that point. Hope you enjoy!
Check out my tutorial on using follow actions in Ableton Live. There are ton’s of uses for follow actions; creating an arrangement to play along with, using them to improvise an arrangement, creating crazy glitch patterns, etc. This is a basic overview that will be the foundation for some more in-depth videos in the near future.
Check out my tutorial on how to create “128s” in Ableton Live’s Sampler. A 128 is a palate of sounds, and a way to turn a sampler into a flexible sound replacement tool. It’s also the basis for a lot of awesome glitch tricks, and inspirational writing techniques, so it’s a good concept to master.