What a gem this track is. Summer 1988 …. What’s On Your Mind comes out …. one of my all-time favorite retro electropop tracks by Information Society. The Latin Rascals did killer job in editing the club-mix version, and by such editing (especially in the breakdown) was very difficult to do at that time when there was no Protools; the only digital-audio multitrack recording/editing that could be done at that time was on very expensive proprietary systems such as the Synclavier (also read my other blog post here) or Fairlight CMI. It’s amazing how this track still stands the test of time. Brilliant production nonetheless. A lot of gating and stuttering effects. Automation wizardry.

Information Society – “What’s On Your Mind” (Club Mix)…

Artist: Information Society
Title: What’s On Your Mind (Club Mix)
Year: 1988
Label: Tommy Boy
Media Source: Recorded straight from 12-inch record to enhanced digital.

Information Society – “What’s On Your Mind” (Club Mix) (mp3)

 

Information Society – “What’s On Your Mind” (What’s On Your Dub Mix)…

Artist: Information Society
Title: What’s On Your Mind (What’s On Your Dub Mix)
Year: 1988
Label: Tommy Boy
Media Source: Recorded straight from 12-inch record to enhanced digital.

Information Society – “What’s On Your Mind” (What’s On Your Dub Mix) (mp3)

 

Information Society – “What’s On Your Mind” (The 54 Mix)…

Artist: Information Society
Title: What’s On Your Mind (The 54 Mix)
Year: 1988
Label: Tommy Boy
Media Source: Recorded straight from 12-inch record to enhanced digital.

Information Society – “What’s On Your Mind” (The 54 Mix) (mp3)

 

Information Society – “What’s On Your Mind” (Pure Energy Mix)…

Artist: Information Society
Title: What’s On Your Mind (Pure Energy Mix)
Year: 1988
Label: Tommy Boy
Media Source: Recorded straight from 12-inch record to enhanced digital.

Information Society – “What’s On Your Mind” (Pure Energy Mix) (mp3)

 

Information Society – “What’s On Your Mind” (Percapella)…

Artist: Information Society
Title: What’s On Your Mind (Percapella)
Year: 1988
Label: Tommy Boy
Media Source: Recorded straight from 12-inch record to enhanced digital.

Information Society – “What’s On Your Mind” (Percapella) (mp3)

 

suzanne ciani

Suzanne Ciani…

I am a synthesizer man. I love machines that go PING! And I adore babes on synths …. twisting knobs, patching chords and pressing keys with their shiny red nails …. especially Suzanne Ciani. She’s a rare electronic musician guru and genius.

She uses every synth made by humanoids, especially the Synclavier which was the world’s most powerful and most expensive synth/sampler/workstation from the late 70′s through the mid 90′s, made by New England Digital.

Synclavier System…

Synclavier’s base price started around US$200,000. The system was expandable to infinity and costs would reach tens of millions of dollars. In 1985, Synclavier could sample at rate of 150-KHz, 16-bit, stereo. It’s mainframe was super-computer UNIX system. Other features included: light-pen for touch screen, lots of red-lit buttons, blinking lights, large LED screen, hard disk recorders, waveform software, multiple i/o’s, synth oscillators (FM), optical re-write laser disk storage, slip differential, oozie, ammunition, stealth power, radar, sonar, one round knob, and more.

As a matter of fact, NASA used Synclavier systems, because it was THE most advanced and powerful super-computer in the world at that time (1980′s) ….. to launch space-shuttles, not music careers!

Read specs of Synclavier here.

Artists/producers who used Synclavier:

  • Trevor Horn
  • Sting
  • Phil Collins
  • Lauri Anderson
  • Frank Zappa
  • Peter Gabriel
  • Herbie Hancock
  • John Tesh
  • Depeche Mode
  • Thompson Twins
  • Tears For Fears
  • Michael Jackson (Bad album was 90% Synclavier sounds)
  • Grace Jones (the entire Slave To The Rhythm LP)
  • Frankie Goes To Hollywood
  • and countless of other big names

Oscar-winner sound-designer Gary Rydstorm (Skywalker Sound, Lucas Entertainment, Pixar) used (and still uses) the Synclavier in making epic sound effects for movies such as Saving Private Ryan, Minority Report and all the unforgettable T-Rex sounds in Jurassic park.

Synclaiver is the most extraordinary machine that produced the most incredible sounds the world has ever heard.

Synclavier.II

Synclavier II System

Synclavier Waveterm monitor and computer interface.

Synclavier Waveterm monitor and computer interface.

synclavier9600

Synclavier 9600 system, circa 1991/1992, with two huge mainframes which host UNIX computer parts, CPU's, RAM, several hard-drives, multiple i/o's, DSP cards and more.

Showdown of several Synclavier systems, possibly conjoined together as one big super-computer, with monitors and several Synclavier keyboard controllers.

Showdown of several Synclavier systems, possibly conjoined together as one big super-computer, with monitors and several Synclavier keyboard controllers.

Propaganda, P-Machinery

While the norm for most tracks go anywhere between 3:30 to 6:00 minutes in length … I prefer 15:00 minutes or longer … like the four seasons. Give me 4 long tracks to fill the hour, and I’ll be one very happy Iraqi. I love tracks that take me on long journeys through various movements.

One of my all-time favorite synth-pop groups is PROPAGANDA from germany … who sound like twisted ABBA + Industrial + TechnoPop + Darkness.

P-Machinery 12 inch cover

12-inch vinyl cover of P:Machinery

My favorite Proganda track is P:Machinery.

I’ve taken two 12-inch vinyl versions of that track and conjoined them together as one … the way I want to listen to P:Machinery by:

  • digitizing them into Protools;
  • spending two long months cleaning them up;
  • getting rid of every single scratch/pop/click;
  • restoring deteriorated sounds through various RE-SYNTHESIS processes and techniques;
  • splicing the tracks to separate clips;
  • re-arranging and layering clips to my taste;
  • throwing in my own synth-stabs, chops and other minor subtleties;
  • adding & automating series of chained top-notch effects throughout the mix, utilizing parameters some of you could not even pronounce … thus resulting with more dynamic and reverberated DEPTH to the mix;
  • fattening the bottom-end;
  • widening overall stereo perception; and
  • mixing, engineering and mastering my version of P:Machinery the way I think it’s supposed to be heard.

To my taste, P:Machinery sounds better than ‘sick’ … more like master piece of shit which blasts sonically across the stereo-field … not one element standing still but constantly moving all over the place.

Listen Hashmoderized P:Machinery track…

Propaganda – “P:Machinery” (Hashmoderized) (mp3)

 

Lyrics…

On joyless lanes we walk in lines
a calm but steady flow
Accompanied by loud commands
our strength is running low.

Another hope feeds another dream
another truth installed by the machine
a secret wish the marrying of lies
today comes true what common sense denies.

Rotating wheels are destiny
in flame the city lies
Machines call out for followers far out into the night

The calls of the machines drowning in the steam.

Another hope feeds another dream
another truth installed by the machine
a secret wish the marrying of lies
today comes true what common sense denies.

The calls of the machines drowning in the steam.

On joyless lanes we walk in lines
a calm but steady flow
our strength is running low.

Another hope – another dream – another truth -
installed by the machine – installed by the machine.

Gear Used By Propaganda…

New England Digital, Synclavier 9600 System

New England Digital, Synclavier 9600 System

New england Digital, Synclavier II

New england Digital, Synclavier II

PPG Wave and Waveterm 2

PPG Wave and Waveterm 2

External Links About Propaganda…

Live Performance…

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