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On Triphop Temple's Upcoming Single Release: Dub Forest 

Recently, I've been thinking about how much I liked the album Deep Forest. They won a Grammy, toured the world, and even played for the president of the United States. Besides all that, the music is great, the production is amazing, and who wouldn't want to get Pygmy vocalists into the top 40? 

They did get criticized because none of the people behind the voices had been paid anything. Since then, the artists set up a foundation to benefit their tribal community. 

Regardless, I was trying to figure out a way to emulate what Deep Forest had done without access to such great voices. After reversing samples of people speaking, I put them in Melodyne sound editing software and brought their speech all on one note. Then I changed the formant which changes how you sound such as young, old, male, or female. The result is like chanting in a foreign language or even an alien language. 

After hanging out on the Taxi.com forum, the largest A&R company in the world, I learned that even if sound samples are royalty free, other people using them may send you a letter from their lawyer asking you to cease and desist stealing their song, not that they have a toe to stand on. It's just that defending your position is not free, easy, or fun. 

You'd basically need to repitch an octave, time-stretch, and run the vocal through a distortion unit so it sounds like a guitar solo as well as change it from major to minor if you want to guarantee not being sued. I don't imagine many people think to play the vocal backwards because who would want that? 

But if the composers of Deep Forest can get Pygmies in the top 40 why wouldn't it be possible to get alien chanting? Hey, I can dream if I want to. 

I think music has to strike a balance between repetition and variety and we've all heard enough songs in English worldwide. I wish BTS would sing more in Korean. 

Anyway, the weirdness factor of backwards vocals is certainly not contributing to excessive repetition of English. I just have to make sure it doesn't devolve into chaos. I don't know about you but I really like it. 

I composed these tracks with backwards vocals; Dub Forest, and Zambezi Beats. Zambezi is quirky but Dub Forest really came out the way I intended and just works so well on so many levels. 

I called the language of backwards vocals Zambezi from the fictional African country in the movie King Ralph. When I was trying to register my tunes of Spotify, it asks what language the vocals are in and I couldn't answer the question. I didn't want to say it was an instrumental because people who want a vocalist wouldn't buy it. It's not good to release singles of instrumentals. They work better as albums. 

I like the result so much I'm going to double down on this approach. If Spotify doesn't even have a category for it, then I must be on the right trail. 

On Spotify I chose to go with the most obscure African language, Amharic, to offend the least number of people. It's probably obvious I didn't color inside the lines or work and play well with others but maybe it's better to have a self and no audience than an audience and no self. 

Lastly, it's really important to myself, wife, and two children to have this release be a success so please, PLEASE like, comment, share, subscribe, and especially BUY ten copies for your family and friends. Thank you.

History of Triphop Temple 

I come from a classical guitar background so played pieces by composers such as Sor, Tarrega, Carcassi. But I did listen to heavy metal in junior high school like Led Zeppelin and Thin Lizzy, that sort of thing.

My composition professor in Korea was Professor Lee Seung Seon, an expert on the modernist composer Lutoslavski so I know the theory behind what someone like Allan Holdsworth was doing which I love especially All Our Yesterdays, Above & Below, and Distance vs Desire.

Compositions like that flowed out of me for a long time but it didn't go anywhere as you can imagine. It's mainly high level musicians who can understand and appreciate it.

I studied ethnomusicology in Korea from an expert on the music of Korean shamanism, Professor Park Mi Kyeong, while at the graduate university in Korea.

There were actually a lot of ethnomusicological field recordings available from all over the world such as the Middle East, Africa, and Southeast Asia in the Korean city of Daegu.

I also had the first Javanese gamelan set to reside in Korea which I donated to the professor of ethnomusicology.

There was a drum academy down the street from my apartment for Korean changgu drum. I actually attended a concert of changgu master Kim Duk-soo which was amazing.

I went to Thailand and heard Piphat Mon ensembles and got to play the instruments.

I went to Indonesia and got the hear gamelan orchestras play up close.

Now I'm back in Bali producing music, mixing all of my education and experiences. I hope people love it. It's really important to me, my wife, and our two children that my fist single Dub Forest is a big success so please, PLEASE subscribe, like, comment, share, and especially BUY ten copies for your family and friends. Thank you. 

On Triphop Temple's Style 

When the Asian Underground was very popular I got these two CDs from the Putumayo label called Sahara Lounge and Asian Groove. So here's this ethnic music with western drum kits and synthesizers mixed with scratching and special effects. It wasn't metal, classical, modernist, jazz fusion or ethnomusicological field recordings but I loved it. It has influenced me a lot.

I read where innovation in the arts allow us to have new emotions we can have in no other way and I think this applies to the music of the Asian Underground.

I didn't compose my music with an eye toward forcing to conform to a philosophy but I think it's useful to talk about Metamodernism in order to explain what my style means to me. Metamodernism is a philosophy which didn't come up through the peer reviewed journals like it was supposed to, and it has been criticized for misreading of the philosopher Kant. But it's been praised for being useful for analyzing the arts.

There's a lot I could say about Metamodernism but the important thing is it's proposition that all the experimental, eclectic combining of forms, styles, culture, instruments, and electronics is humanity trying to reach beyond it's boundaries. There's more to Metamodernism than that but I don't want to take this train too far off the rails. 

I only chose to put myself in the trip-hop box because I heard music from it's artists who sound like they're doing what I'm doing. 

The drug portion implied by the trip in triphop is not an important part of my music although experimentation there is perhaps natural due to young people's curiosity. It's another example of humanity trying to reach beyond it's limitations. But it's probably not the best road to stay on for long since the final destination may be greater limitation than when you started. 

The history of the hip-hop (coming from the "hop" in triphop) was partially due to people being stuck between a rock and an impossible place. Here were those poor kids in the ghetto seeing their favorite artists on TV living in Beverly Hills or wherever. Them and everyone around them trying to figure out how to climb out of the financial hole of ghetto life.

Then someone had the idea to put two turntables together and manually manipulate them. The flow of the talk over the microphone and the entertaining way they backed up over the best part of the song to repeat it again before allowing the turntable to play the rest, and reading the audience for how many times they could get away with that became the important aspects of the music. 

Those things require a lot of skill albeit a different skill than playing a regular musical instrument, yet the result is very entertaining in the right hands. Suddenly, an M.C., a rapper, or a "producer" could find themselves touring the world or on the Billboard charts in the top 10. 

But even if they never make it, it's a rewarding way to give an impoverished life that brings people together, gets them to dance, makes them feel a little happier, more valuable to the community, even powerful. It's an avenue of expression for people who many of the avenues are denied. 

I can totally relate having struggled with drugs, fucked up school before getting serious, hopped from job to job and all I could see was a dead end future. 

I really like how stealing the beat from the drum break in a James Brown record has morphed into 80's and 90's hip-hop drum patterns. People still have a lot of nostalgia for the music of that time especially in trip-hop. 

Another thing I like about trip-hop and hip-hop is how they naturally borrow sounds from ethnic music for it's emotional effect and I think this takes us back to how innovative music helps us have new emotions we can have in no other way. 

I want to do that thing you're not supposed to do where amateur essayists say, "In conclusion, that's what my style means to me." And it does. So there. And pppbbb to all the anal grammarians who inflict high level language science on grade-schoolers. You know who you are. 

 

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