As it has been a while since I’ve provided any information on my musical whereabouts, I believe it is high time I make note of recent happenings. In no particular order:

  • I spent a good portion of last weekend revamping the main SIGHUP website. The previous dark and burgundy iteration had outlasted its welcome with me. I’m pleased with its new clothes, and the structure of the website was tidied somewhat to make it easier to change without updating dozens of pages. looks okay in most browsers. It was a bit off when I checked it on an iPhone, but I can’t find the motivation to care much.
  • This blog also received a modest visual update to stay thematically aligned with the main site.
  • A few weeks ago, a new Intelligent Machinery compilation came out.This one was based on using audio from our humble Sounds Found project. The IM compilations will now be released as adjunct projects to the Just Not Normal netlabel. This one was pretty good I have to say, quite varied and lots of interesting approaches to working with field recordings on display. There’s a SIGHUP track entitled “rain, traffic” included. Project can be downloaded for free here.
  • As part of the website redesign, my old free releases have been wrapped up in zip files for download here.
  • In May, I participated in a project assembled by Mark Weidenbaum at called “Despite the Downturn” in which several musicians interpreted an image from an article about the music industry published in The Atlantic. A SIGHUP track entitled “Adieu for industry” is the lead-off track for the compilation. More info on the project at the above linked page and at Disquiet.
  • The SIGHUP material on Soundcloud is in constant flux. The initial set of modular-based drone tracks have been retired for now, and a new set of rhythm-based tracks are currently on display. An unrelated track, entitled “Woodfire” is also there, uploaded last weekend.
  • All three SIGHUP commercial releases are now a) released under a Creative Commons license, and b) sold as pay-what-you’d-prefer, with a minimum of $1 USD. I’ve decided to return to CC licensing for no reason other than it might encourage someone unknown to me to do something cool with the audio, like use it as a video soundtrack or make a remix. I haven’t sold anything in a while, and so figured the flexible pricing might encourage folk to get all three at once. I’m more eager to reach listeners than make money, so I don’t see the harm.
  • A name change is pending. At least a name modification. I’ll be keeping SIGHUP, but will alternately start using its elongated form Signal Hangup when I so choose. A primary reason for doing this is that, when speaking about the project to someone, SIGHUP sounds odd and usually requires me to restate more than once. In a loud setting it becomes near impossible to convey SIGHUP, as it turns out. I guess hard G, aspirated H combos weren’t made for the Central Canadian accent.

I think that covers most things. This also makes SIGHUPblog post 100 (although some have been deleted over the years, so there have been more. But there are currently only 100 active on this site). See you in Spring 2011!

I am releasing a new album today, entitled cue sheet. This is my first commercial release since last year’s end of. The new album is four tracks, roughly 42 minutes long, and available as a download (in many audio formats) for $5 USD through Bandcamp. It can also be previewed in full there (and here):

Once I had completed end of, I decided I wanted a change in style and technique for whatever came next. At the time, I had been listening to a lot of melody-heavy ambient music, like recent releases on the 12k label and stuff by The Fun Years, and so gravitated toward that kind of approach at first. I also wanted to move away from using old records as source material, especially since the wax cylinder archive changed its licensing policy last year, and so everything here was made by me.

Cue sheet in its current form is at least the second if not third complete release I made using that working title. Early versions have all been discarded and ransacked for bits I could reuse, several of which have made it in to the final draft. As it turns out, the final release is more consistent with the style of the last two commercial albums than I had expected. After creating material, I gradually refined it back to something more consistent with the general SIGHUP style, not intentionally, but I guess I’ve created a discernible SIGHUP style for a reason (or at least can’t escape it outright).

There are still overtly melodic elements contained within work, just fewer of them than I had originally intended. The release reminds me in a way of something like Brian Eno’s Apollo, moving from stretches of minimally shaped sound to downright tuneful bits. No slide guitar, alas, but there is some ukulele. I like how the music has turned out, it hangs in the air in an appropriate way.

An update on the previous post, the solo modular synthesizer performances have now grown to seven tracks, and I’ve wrapped them up in a set list on Soundcloud for easy access. I’ve added a Pressure Points module by Makenoise to the system, so I’m now able explore some looser timing and more sporadic events, some of which is at least modestly present in the seventh track.

Update Aug 23, 2010: I’ve taken these tracks down to make room for others on Soundcloud, in keeping with the rapid publishing angle of what I’m doing there. I expect the best among these tracks will resurface as a full release.

Copyright © Steven Hamann. All rights reserved.