log 005

You can never escape your roots; or the reason why you got into music in the first place. Whatever the reason was at the time it probably felt important enough to eventually spend a lot of time (and money) in doing. I won’t dwell upon my own history too much and since I don’t remember much of it anyway it’s a peculiar thing that I still remember buying two specific records in 1996. This was my first encounter with Dub music. The reason for me doing this is still unknown. At the time I didn’t know what to think of it. Specially since reggae music wasn’t really my thing, not to start a rampage.. but I believe there’s a lot to be said about the reggae scene (being not only white but also a young woman). Anyway, those records had something that caught my attention. For me it was studio products exploring rhytm and the sound in itself, like my experience with techno but much slower. It was also something that I could listen to at home by myself. It was mesmerizing.

Fast forwarding twenty years an old friend of mind sort of reminded me of all this when we talked about my MA and how I came to start hardware hacking cassette decks. “So, in theory” – he said. “Could you actually build a dub siren?” I’d like to have one of those.” The thought hadn’t even occured to me so I thought about it for a while and said – “In theory it should be possible, I don’t know how to do it but I just have to try I guess.” 
I still have no answer to why I spend most of my time with things I know absolutely nothing about. It just starts with an idea and as they say ‘curiosity killed the cat‘.

the records:

King Tubby And Friends ‎– Dub Gone Crazy (The Evolution Of Dub At King Tubby’s 1975-1979)
King Tubby & Prince Jammy ‎– Dub Gone 2 Crazy: In Fine Style 1975-1979

Except for the dub siren, bass and the mixer, what also signifies dub is the extensive use of delay. If we believe that time is essential in music then delay might be the most interesting phenomena dealing with time, or rather, manipulating time (or our perception of it). Thanks to the guidance of Jim Frize  during my visit to Leicester, UK. I discovered that Leicester seems to be the mecca for analog vintage tape delays. My close encounter with theese gave my a much better understanding of how a tape delay work and there’s no better way to learn then getting hands on experience. Back in Sweden I could finally apply the theory I had learned before on to the practical experience to be able to turn my own cassette decks into tape delays. 

What does a Delay do?

Here’s a short breakdown:
A basic Delay sums up a source signal for a period of time before releasing it back into the signal path. This is usually called a slap back delay or echo.
This echo will have the same amplitude as the original sound. To hear repeats, there must be feedback. Otherwise, after the first echo emerges from the delay line, there can
be no more sound. Most delays therefor use the output from the delayed signal and feeds it back to the input, turning itself into an endless loop.

A Tape Delay works the same way but the delay time is now dependent on mechanics such as
1. tape length
2. playback speed
Even though I haven’t had the opportunity work with reel to reel tape machines to try this myself theory states that by feeding the record head some of the output signal from playhead we’ve now created feedback.

further reading:




Roland RE-201








HH multi echo – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DoxzYIk9yLs








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