Blue Water Drift Dive relaunch – September 22, 2018

Mark your calendars!  On Saturday, September 22, at 3 PM US Pacific Time / 6 PM US Eastern Time / 11 PM UTC, I will be relaunching Blue Water Drift Dive as a live concert series.   In this broadcast, I’ll be performing a live ambient set, which will be simulcast both to (audio only) and as a live YouTube stream (video and audio).

This will be the first time I’ve ever performed on a video stream, so it is sure to be interesting.  I hope to see you then!

The return of the live BWDD program

picture1-1-800x445Well, my vacation from Blue Water Drift Dive lasted just a bit longer than I expected.  But, as always, things happen for a reason, and in this case it was good for me to take a long deep look at what I want to do with the live broadcast.  And I’m happy to report that I’ll soon be returning to the airwaves, but with some key – and I hope welcome – changes.

Firstly, instead of broadcasting at the same time every week, the schedule for Blue Water Drift Dive will become more ad-hoc, and will likely be no more than once or twice a month.  I’ll schedule the broadcasts well in advance, so folks can mark their calendars, but I won’t be broadcasting weekly any longer.  This is both so the show doesn’t take over my entire life, and also because …

The show will also change in its format.  Instead of being a playlist of music by my favorite artists with the occasional live performance, it will become a show focused exclusively on live performance.  Almost always I will be the artist performing live, but I certainly hope and plan to host other artists as well.  There might be a little recorded warm-up music before and after the live performance (Creative Commons only), but the focus of the program will be live music.

And … the show will also change in its medium.  Instead of just being a live audio stream on RadioSpiral, the broadcast will also be simulcast to YouTube as live audio/video stream, so that viewers get a better sense of the live music, can see me as I perform it, etc.  This is by far the biggest change to the program.  I’ve never done live video streaming before, so it should be a fun learning exercise.

So that’s the plan.  I don’t have a date scheduled yet for the first broadcast, because I am still setting up and testing my equipment for this purpose.  Also, I don’t know how well my home internet access will cooperate with such a stream.  So I don’t know for sure when this will all kick off, but I’m hoping it will be soon.

As always, check back here at for more details.

New Palancar release: Final Theory

00-thumbnailIt’s with a great deal of pleasure that I announce the release of Final Theory, my latest solo release under the Palancar project name.

Over the past several years, I have been increasingly fascinated by the pulsing electronic music of the Berlin School. Iconic radio programs like Star’s End educated me on this style of electronica and ever since I have been trying to create music in this vein. Somehow I always ended up starting with a sequence but ending up in a quite different place altogether. This is not at all a bad thing, in my view; but it does mean that I still have not been able to fully embrace the genre.

With my latest release, Final Theory, I am again attempting to dive headlong into the Berlin School ocean. And though I branched off onto tangents in several places, I feel that this is the closest I’ve yet come to releasing an album that might be called an example of the Berlin School. How close? Well you be the judge.

However I label the style of music, I’m very proud of the result. This album represents literally years of effort, and, for the first time in a decade or more, contains more use of outboard synthesis than software synthesis, something long overdue. In addition, I started using the guitar, both six string and lap steel, in ways I have not before. To say that I had fun creating this music is to greatly understate the case.

Put simply, this album was a blast to create. I hope you enjoy hearing it as much as I did recording it.

If you’re interested, you can find the album for free download in two places:



For anyone who makes electronic music, the site ought to be a common destination.  One of the many great things about that community is the festivals that they regularly put on at various locations throughout the year.  These festivals are sort of a combination of live concerts, seminars, workshops, breakout sessions, group meals, general mayhem, and even a Synthesizer Petting Zoo.  Who could ask for more?

The granddaddy of them all is the northeast festival, affectionally called NEEMFEST, which is going on right now.  Fortunately for those of us who couldn’t make the trip, RadioSpiral is simulcasting it live.

Check it out!

Steve Roach and Byron Metcalf – Tales From The Ultra Tribe

1eb4ba90d3a4496aa76fde2fc49af9d0While in a coding frenzy at work today, I decided I needed a little tribal ambient to energize and focus me.  So who else should I reach out to but the two masters of this genre, Steve Roach and Byron Metcalf, whose legendary collaborations have produced some of the finest tribal ambient music ever recorded.

So I spun up their iconic release Tales From The Ultra Tribe.  And I am reminded, yet again, why these two guys are regarded so highly in the ambient world.  Absolutely pristine, mature ambience with Metcalf’s signature trance-inducing hand percussion.  If you are looking for some good music to work to, or just some good music, look no further.  Highly recommended.

Two exciting live concerts this weekend

It turns out that this weekend, August 4-5, is going to be a great one for lovers of electronic and ambient music.

First off, none other than Steve Roach will be performing live on, both Saturday and Sunday evenings at 10p ET / 7p PT.


I heard his last on air concert, and it was a masterwork.  Don’t miss this!

And if that wasn’t enough, on Star’s End early Sunday morning, Jason Sloan will be performing live.


I’ve heard Jason perform numerous times and he is always brilliant.  Check it out!




The ambience of Stephen Phillips

Another work day, another set of ambient pieces to listen to whilst coding.  Today I loaded up every single piece I have by Stephen Phillips, one of the great ambient artists ever, and put them on random play.  It has been much too long since I listened.

Here are some of the gorgeous pieces I am enjoying:

Neptune Is A Gas Giant

Installations 3 – A Sense of Warmth

Jupiter’s Moons

You can hear all of Stephen’s music at Dark Duck Records, which, by the way, is also one of the coolest ambient record labels ever, releasing some of the best ambient music anywhere by a variety of artists.

Check it out …