Wednesday, January 23, 2013

New Mainroom/House Mixtape!

21 of the best main-room smashers mixed and compiled in a 77 Minute Mixtape for your enjoyment!

Feat Tracks and remixes by Avicii, Alesso, Deniz Koyu, Kaskade, Dirty South, Nicky Romero, Hardwell & Dannic, Michael Woods, and more!!

The theme for the mixtape this time is... BIG ROOM SOUND!

The Big Room Sound is the thing that is taking the world by storm at the moment - you can see that pretty much everyone LOVES this sound, even many of the more Progressive Trance producers and DJs have slowly transformed their style into main-room friendly

Personally I love the vocals and the melodic elements of the big room stuff, there are so many flavours in this mixtape, I compiled and mixed 21 high-energy, big room tunes and crafting them into a seamless musical journey - I hope you enjoy listening to it as much as I enjoyed mixing it!

This  mixtape was done LIVE on the Pioneer DDJ-SX with Serato, I took several different takes all with different flow and different tracklists, I have finally decided to go with this as the final product!

Well if you are wondering why I have been hammering mixtapes rapidly these days - I plan to make a whole batch of new (2013) mixtapes before I go into hibernation mode (picture a hermit or some warrior training in the mountains of tibet) and focus on my own original productions / remixes - I think its time for me to cut down on playing other people's music and spend more time working on my original music!

ZILCH - The Main Room Vol.1 (Mainroom House / Progressive House / Electro)


01. Dirty South & Michael Brun - Rift (Original Mix)
02. Arty, Nadia Ali & BT - Must Be The Love (Dannic Remix)
03. Nervo & Hook N Sling - Reason (Sick Individuals Remix)
04. Deniz Koyu Vs Avicii - Bong Into Darkness (Hardwell & Dannic MashUp)
05. Jewelz Feat. Scott Sparks - Toxic Rush (Original Mix)
06. Showtek & Justin Prime - Cannonball (Original Mix)
07. The Ashton Shuffle vs Tommy Trash - Sunrise (Won't Get Lost) (Tommy Trash Version)
08. Gemini - Robots (Original Mix)
09. Mikkas & Amba Shepard - Finally (Original Mix)
10. Alesso - Clash (Original Mix)
11. Nicky Romero & Nervo - Like Home (Original Mix)
12. W&W - Lift Off! (Original Mix)
13. Steve Aoki & Angger Dimas Feat. Kay - Singularity (Original Mix)
14. Miike Snow - Pretender (Deniz Koyu Remix)
15. Kaskade Feat. Haley - LLOVE (Dada Life Remix)
16. Avicii vs Nicky Romero - I Could Be The One (Didrick Remix)
17. Hardwell Feat. Amba Sheperd - Apollo (Original Mix)
18. Kid Massive & Alex Sayz Feat. Miella - Strong (Dannic Remix)
19. Eric Turner Vs Avicii - Dancing In My Head (Michael Woods Club Mix)
20. Marcel Woods & Allure - Are You Ready (Original Mix)
21. Ellie Goulding - Lights (Feenixpawl Bootleg)

Friday, January 18, 2013

New Electro/House Mixtape 2013!

New mixtape for 2013!!!

21 seizure-inducing, straight up hard electro tracks (hence the appropriate mixtape name and the cover art)

I love doing mixtapes, for me it allows me to shape some kind of journey, like a book that is meant to be read from the first page to the last one - this mixtape is the same, every single track was chosen and compiled to form some sort of musical journey to the listener~ the theme this time is... hard, heavy, robotic, mechanical, video game kinda noise

The mix opens with a familiar song... "Bug hunt - Noisia Remix" by Skrillex, yes this song is one of the sound track to the walt disney movie "Wreck It Ralph", in which I intent to carry the listener to "the video game world" - where noises do sound like what would you hear for the rest of the mix!

This mix is influenced by the rage, seizure music the likes of knife party, porter robinson, and such, meaning it would be on the harder spectrum of electro house, with a very heavy dose of Dubstep (or shall we say... BROstep) influences. Following with the "video game" theme, the next song "Atarii" by Eminence follows the style of bleeping noises (Atari - get it? hence the song name) with very heavy bass, the rest of the mix pretty much is self explanatory, I try to include some tracks with vocal elements such as Zedd's "Fall Into The Sky" which has beautiful vocals by none other than Ellie Goulding, to keep this mix from being all bleepy and wub wub. Other beautiful vocal tracks include Felix Cartal's "No Sleep" and REVOLVR's "Machine"

To finish off the mix, we have GTA's "Ai Novinha", an interesting track that starts off at 128 bpm and ends at the Dubstep/Brostep/Trap BPM of 145 Beats per minute - just to give the listener that nasty surprise at the end!


Listen/Download on MIXCRATE

Dropbox public link to download MP3: CLICK

ZILCH - High Voltage! Vol. 2

01. Intro - Skrillex - Bug Hunt (NOISIA remix)
02. Eminence - Atarii (original mix)
03. A-Trak Feat. Oliver - Disco Nap (original mix)
04. Calvin Harris & Nicky Romero - Iron (Dyro remix)
05. Felix Cartal Feat. Natalie Angiuli - No Sleep (original mix)
06. Zedd & Lucky Date Feat. Ellie Goulding - Fall Into The Sky (original mix)
07. Sander Van Doorn - Joyenergizer
08. Steve Aoki - Emergency (Laidback Luke remix)
09. Starkillers & Bl3nd - Xception (original mix)
10. Showtek & Bassjackers - Hey! (original mix)
11. Jordy Dazz & Dannic - Fuego (original mix)
12. REVOLVR & Lea Luna - Machine (original mix)
13. Whiite, Prima Volta & Stazz - Broken (Vandalism & Mr. Fluff remix)
14. Tradelove - Seven Nation Army (Alex Mind remix)
15. D-Rashid & Blasterjaxx - Reborn (original mix)
16. Congorock - Monolith (original mix)
17. Deezee & Joshua K - Rockstar (Mind Electric remix)
18. Elite Force - Captain America (Felix Luker remix)
19. Tomcraft - Loneliness 2K13 (Jaxxon remix)
20. Digital Freq & Pyramyth - Space Craft (original mix)
21. GTA - Ai Novinha (128 - 145 BPM mix)

Listen on Mixcloud!

Tuesday, January 8, 2013

PT1: Building the 'Ultimate' Lean, Mean, MIKRO MASCHINE Mapping for TRAKTOR

Part One: Maschine Mikro Traktor Mapping

Maschine Mikro - The Beatmaking Hardware/Software Package

This is a part one of a multi-part series of my journey to create the "ULTIMATE" Maschine Mikro mapping for Traktor Pro 2.6+

Note that "ULTIMATE" is relative - as everyone will have different objectives of what their midi mapping should and should not do, with Traktor's flexibility in midi mapping, everyone has a different way of playing out, some uses full track decks, some uses a combination of remix decks and track decks, it is also not impossible to play a set entirely from remix decks!

'Ultimate' in terms of midi mapping simply means = a mapping of functions that you ACTUALLY use, rather than a confusing mapping that does everything that you dont need, making it hard to use and cluttered

The whole point and reasoning of my me making my own mapping is that, when I tried to look for a good Maschine Mikro mapping, I was unable to find a really good one that suits me, there are a lot of REALLY GOOD mappings out there that seems to do everything that Traktor does, but I find them to be way too confusing, one of the mapping comes with 20+ pages of instruction on how to use the mapping, so that was a bit much, I guess i'd spend the time to do my own mapping instead! 

So the goal here... is to make a mapping that suits OUR (Mine and yours of course!) objectives, and making it as intuitive, easy to use as possible, by explaining how I did my mapping, and how you can do yours, rather than just giving you a TSI configuration file of my own mapping (which i might or might not do - lets see! as Im still working on it now)

you know there is this old saying "give a man a fish and you feed him for a day, show him how to catch a fish and he'll be full for a lifetime"? 

Well... who wants to go fishing? :)

Why The Maschine Mikro?

MASCHINE Mikro MK1 - Orange Buttons Only!

The Maschine Mikro is a Hardware and Software beatmaking package from the German based Native Instruments, it works with both Mac OSX and Microsoft Windows and the Hardware (pictured above) was designed to work together with the software (installed on your computer) to create an all-in-one music making package. However, the Maschine Mikro also acts as a fully configurable Midi Controller, in which it is essentially a blank slate free for users to re-program and re-configure as they wish - according to their own intentions and purposes

The Maschine Mikro is packed with super-awesome value, not only that it comes with a full featured, MPC Style, beat making software - "MASCHINE", it now also includes the super awesome software synthesizer "MASSIVE" - made popular by the BROstep King Skrillrex to make the infamous WUB WUB WUB sound (Oh and Massive originally sells for USD $200!)

The Maschine Mikro itself is also a super sturdy, well-built MIDI Pad Controller, the awesome 4x4 Drum Pads has 8 Different separate Banks to map, making the amount of available, mappable pads amount to 128 in all!

So you get all these things, a nice fully mappable Midi controller, a full length beat making software that also host plugins within in (and also can be used inside DAW software of your choice), for a relatively low price - I got my Maschine Mikro MK1 during their special clearance SALE for ultra cheap! 

The MK2 Maschine Mikro currently sells for $399 USD, which is still a great value considering it still comes with the heavyweight software synth MASSIVE that retails for $200 by itself!

The only downside to the Maschine Mikro is of course - the single LCD screen (compared to the DUAL screen on the Full Sized Maschine), and the Singular endless encoder (very clicky - not good for smooth effects). If you absolutely must have 8 rotaries / endless encoders, the Maschine Mikro might not be the best for you, and the Full-Sized Maschine might be the better alternative instead

Keep in mind that you dont have to have the Maschine Mikro to use these tips, as in any midi mappable controller will do, you will find that you will get the most benefit from PAD Midi controllers with multiple banks and also LED feedback - in a dark club it can be really hard to see which pad you are smashing - and this could have fatal consequences - so LED feedback, if possible, is a must!

Examples of good midi controller to map would be the Allen and Heath Xone K2 - this thing have multiple, latching layers, and has multiple colors of assignable LED Feedback!

Is the Maschine Mikro For You?

Maschine VS Maschine MIKRO

The Maschine MIKRO is a lot smaller than the original Maschine, but it is still, not small at all, and will take up a lot of space, if you decide to use the Maschine Mikro for gigs you need to be aware that there is not always enough space in the DJ Booth - For example in one of the venues that I play at regularly there is just enough space to put my Macbook Pro (They have a pair of CDJ900's and DJM900 there) which leaves no space at all for the Maschine Mikro - keep this in mind, if space is an issue the Traktor X1 or the Allen and heath Xone K2 may be a better alternative!

Reasons to choose the Maschine Mikro as a midi controller

  • 8 Banks of 16 PADS!!! Easily swappable, and Freely mappable to whatever you want! (Midi Mapper's dream!)
  • Visual Feedback on the Screen shows which bank you are at exactly - no confusion here, both for Pads bank and the Encoder banks, plus LED feedback is easily done!
  • Visibility - The Maschine controller is perfectly playable even in pitch Black DARK ~ the Led feedback that you can assign helps to make sure you dont press the wrong button!
  • Built Like a Tank and Durable
  • Comes with MASCHINE Beat making software and MASSIVE Software Synth (Both are great!)
  • Mashing Maschine Pads are Fun!
  • Space is not an issue and you dont mind carrying extra stuff in your backpack (The Maschine Mikro is about the size of a laptop and it normally fits in the laptop compartment of any bag pretty easily anyway)

Reasons NOT TO choose the Maschine Mikro as a midi controller

  • There is only one endless encoder and its clicky - NOT GOOD For assigning FX! (Believe me i tried...) If you do a lot of FX with smooth rotary movements you will not be happy with the single endless encoder that they provide
  • The controller is not too small, some might find it hard to find a space to put it

Set Objectives

Ok first things first - decide on WHAT DO YOU NEED in a midi mapped controller?

What do you have under control already? - and what extra controls do you need and how you can benefit from easy access to them, for example, if you need all 8 hotcues, and the keyboard mapping only has 5, you might want all 8 hotcues mapped to each of the decks (8 pads each , for decks A and B meaning all 16 pads are assigned)

Maybe you use the BEATJUMP Feature a lot and need to map them on a controller?

Do you intend to use the Maschine Mikro with a Timecode DVS Setup? (With Traktor Scratch Pro for example, with Technics Turntable or with PIONEER CDJ's) - this is what I currently do, in this case, you will most likely need access to HOTCUES and Loops (that is, if you use the LOOP functions a lot like I do)

Those who intend to use the Maschine Mikro with an External mixer to control everything (like the now common Traktor X1 setup, to be used with an external sound card and an external mixer - normally the club's) will find that they need transport controls as well, such as Play/Pause, Cue, Pitch controls, Pitch bends, Looping, pretty much everything, this will need much more planning and ideally you should write down what you want to do in a piece of paper to keep it organized, and keep all these functions in the same pad bank for ease access

As an example, Im going to list my objectives according to the "Groups" of PADs (8 available on the maschine mikro) - PRESS AND HOLD the Blue "GROUP" Button to switch between the 8 different, separately mappable Pad Groups

See that BLUE Button? Press and Hold it to switch between GROUPS! 8 Are available!

GROUP 1 - Hotcues for A/B decks

  • 8 x Pads (Left Side) - Hotcue 1-8 for Deck A
  • 8 x Pads (Right Side) - Hotcue 1-8 for Deck B
  • SHIFT 1 + Pads - Erase Hotcue
  • SHIFT 2 + Pads - (NOT DECIDED yet)
  • LED feedback for when there is a hotcue present (led is dimmed when there is no hotcue)
  • SHIFT 1 = "MUTE" Key
  • SHIFT 2 = "SOLO" Key
This bank is for me when I use Traktor Scratch with CDJ's or turntable so all that is need is really hotcues

i am keeping this mapping relatively simple for ease of access, 8 hotcues on the left for deck A, 8 hotcues on the right for deck B - simple and you can hardly press a button accidentally

now the GROUP 2 i intend to make it a bit more interesting by creating my adaptation of the Traktor X1 controller....

GROUP 2 - X1 Emulation (My Take)

  • 8x Pads on the left - Deck A , 8x Pads on the right - Deck B
  • Play/Pause with SHIFT 1 =  KEYLOCK
  • SYNC with SHIFT 1 = Set Master Tempo to this Deck
  • CUE + SHIFT 1 = Jump to Previous HOTCUE
  • CUE(P) + SHIFT 1 = Jump to NEXT HOTCUE
  • BEAT + SHIFT 1 = Pitch Bends
  • In/Out + SHIFT 1 = /2 or *2 the Loop Value (BEAT NOW BEATJUMPS ACCORDING TO LOOP VALUE SHOWN here)
  • SHIFT 2 - turns the whole Pads into hotcue 1-8 for decks A and B , complete with LED Feedbacks (Eg. hold down shift 2 and all the pads will correspond according to whether there is hotcue present for that slot or not - this way you ALWAYS have access to all  hotcues without changing Groups!)

GROUP 3/4 - Hotcues &  X1 Emulation for Deck C/D (Same as group 1/2 but C/D)

Self explanatory - I actually use THREE decks more than anything, due to my Audio Interface (Traktor Audio 6) limitations to having 3 x Stereo Outputs. 

However, Traktor does not have a very handy 3 deck control view in its current version (2.6.0) , its either 2 Decks or 4 Decks so sometimes Im really forced to have 4 decks open even though I really only use 3!

Group 5 - Loop Rolls (with flux mode?) or FX? - Undecided yet

I have several Ideas for the next Group banks, but at the moment I'm experimenting with different things - I am having some problems mapping the Loop Roll / Flux mode function into the pads, somehow they dont work as they should (and this seems like a bug in Traktor 2.6 according to my findings of the Native Instruments forums).

Group 6 - Remix Deck Controls?

Well, more on that when I'm done experimenting!


Coming up in PART 2 - 

Mapping The Maschine Mikro: 

Controller Editor, Traktor Midi Mapping,  Understanding and Setting up Modifiers, LED Feedback (With modifiers)

Sunday, January 6, 2013


So recently Soundcloud decided to take down some of my Trance / House mixtapes due to "copyright infringement", the weird thing is they did not even tell me which tracks on the mixtapes are the culprit and instead just to decide to take down the whole mixtape without any additional info

Mixtapes has been a part of the DJing culture for eternity now, from the days of distributing Cassette Tapes to Burnt CDR's - the Mixtape is a part of the DJ scene as it is like the DJ's portfolio,

I can understand the reasoning of this act of taking down people's copyrighted stuff (which apparently is being HEAVILY reinforced) -  many people apparently used Soundcloud as a means of distributing illegal, full length, unmixed tracks (some of them straight off beatport!) - so that's why!

Soundcloud Pricing - From FREE to 500 Euro A year!

So as my Soundcloud premium was approaching its end... It made me think, do I really want to pay 79 euro a year (the premium plan that i was on - which included 12 Hours of Upload) just for soundcloud to take them down? If that is the case - what would I use the 12 hours of bandwith for?

There are 2 pretty good competitiors or alternatives to Soundcloud, namely 'Mixcloud' and 'MixCrate', I shall discuss each and one of them in pretty good detail you so you can decide which is best for you - keep in mind all of them are free (Soundcloud includes 120 upload minutes on free account) so you can definitely sign up for all of them anyway - but its good to know which one is best for your particular needs!


Why Its Good?

  • Good, attractive layout, easy to use widget to embed on social media
  • Highly populated - Everyone has one! Gets your sound the most exposure!
  • Nice postable APP on both IOS and Android - easily accessible from tablets and mobile phones
  • Premium is Expensive (up to 500 Euro!!!)

The Bad

  • Limited to 120 Minutes on FREE Account
  • Mixtapes containing other artist works are prone to be taken down immediately
  • Limited Downloads on FREE Account (100 Downloads only!)


The Good

  • FREE and Unlimited!
  • Tracklist of mixtape built in
  • Not as heavily populated as Soundcloud, but its pretty crowded
  • OK Looking widget, although not as nice as SoundCloud's, but still, looks pretty cool!
  • Pretty good and fast app on the Android

The Bad

  • Mixtape only - no single sounds are to be uploaded!
  • No DOWNLOADS!!! (Except by the use of other, third party applications to download the sound) - why not??? They need to enable the downloads as an option!
  • Android app disables "seek" in mixtapes, forcing you to listen from beginning to the end without the ability to skip to the middle


The Good

  • FREE and Unlimited!
  • DOWNLOADS Enabled!!! (Only for Registered Users)
  • Tracklist built in on the mixtapes

The Bad

  • No Android or IOS APP!
  • Mixtapes only - no single tracks here
  • No Fancy widgets with awesome waveforms
  • Not as populated as Soundcloud (Currently - that might change with Soundcloud taking down mixes!)
  • Downloads of mixtape require registration - some people are lazy and this may stop them from actually downloading your music!

My Recommendation

If the whole purpose of you getting a soundcloud premium to upload mixtapes, keep in mind that even though you paid some serious $$$, they may (and will) take down your mixtapes if they find that something in there that belongs to another producer (particularly well known ones, say Armin Van Buuren, Tiesto, Swedish House Mafia? Include any of their tracks in a mixtape and you will almost definitely be taken down)

If you produce original tracks and remixes, its a good idea to get soundcloud's free account anyway (for 120 minutes of upload - thats enough to upload 40 songs of 3 minutes in length for example) and that is quite much for single tracks and original production, or you can choose to get their lowest premium account which costs 29 euro a year which doubles your upload time to 240 minutes

If you dont produce and upload only mixtapes - i'd go with either Mixcrate or Mixcloud, since they are both free - if enabling downloads are a must, then I'd definitely recommend Mixcrate - if you dont mind that they require signing in / registration before downloding of course

A good recommendation is to "cycle" your mixtapes, lets say you get the Free Soundcloud account, you can upload one 60 minute mixtape to your soundcloud for a short amount of time, and then after that when you have made your next mixtape, delete the old one and upload it to either Mixcrate or Mixcloud, where your COMPLETE collection of works can be accessed at all times, this way you are still getting Soundcloud's maximum exposure, even if just for a limited time

Oh and for reference, here are the links to all 3 of my pages: