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cubest 020 by the cube orchestraMy playlist of potential Cubest tracks threatens to overwhelm me. You'd think it would be easy when I find a good tune to simply edit it and add it to the done pile, but to make it onto a Cubest album a track needs to 'work' when it comes to the editing stage. Hence I have as many rejected tunes as I do that pass muster

I've tried to be fairly harsh with the editing to keep the tunes moving along. This produces some inevitable 'jumps', but my current disposition allows me to enjoy these changes, taking guidance from the likes of 'Strawberry Fields Forever' and 'Good Vibrations'. Me as Brian Wilson!

The tracks that have made it onto Cubest 020 have been collated from over a year's worth of collecting, with contributions from our extensive family of orchestra members. The Cube Orchestra being what it is, you will often find a musician setting aside their preferred instrument in favour of one on which they're not so proficient

Taking this step into unknown territory can lead to interesting results ...

Jump to Download link ... Back to Cubest series ...

Give It To Me When I'm Ready

2017 05 24 - Marcus Valentine: Keyboards; Keef Chemistry: Effects; Jean-Michel Maheu: Guitar; Martin Urmson: Bass; Steve Radford: Alto Sax; Miranda Mowbray: Clarinet; Matthew Richards: Percussion; Megan Smith: Drums; Tim Robertson: Percussion; Rebecca D Andrea: Vocals;

Quick march into the first track. The weird muffled sound is coming out of my iPad, using an effect which is picking up the ambient stage sound and morphing it, completely out of my control. Still, everyone joins in. Megs has put down her sax and jumped on the drums, while Jean-Michel churns out some great guitar chords. It has a somewhat shambolic feel to it and I like it. Marcus finds a superb, gliding synth sound, absolutely perfect. All the while Rebecca sings her happy tune. It drops out and you can hear a groovy bass line grinding away to some nice percussive work. Altogether, a light and breezy vibe to kick things off ...

Close To The Edge

2016 01 13 - Marcus Valentine: Keyboards; Keef Chemistry: Melodica, Effects; Jon Shepherd: Bass; Ollie Owen: Guitar; Chema Gala: Sax; Steve Radford: Alto Sax; Alberto Sciusco: Percussion; Alun Person: Drums; Matt Mockford: Flute;

Good beat from Alun and nice bass line curtesy of Jon. Ollie's guitar cries along, while Chema sets up his repetitive sax line. Matt's flute is wild, yet tuneful, the melody feeling it's way through jazzy changes. Eventually I tune in to Chema's lines, trying to fill any gaps left as he gasps for breath. The tension builds and everybody's going for it, then it drops out in fine Cube Orchestra style, Marcus plinking on the keyboard, while Jon's bass line twists off-kilter. Nice ...

Happy Now

2016 01 13 - Marcus Valentine: Keyboards; Keef Chemistry: Melodica, Effects; Jon Shepherd: Bass; Ollie Owen: Guitar; Chema Gala: Sax; Steve Radford: Alto Sax; Alberto Sciusco: Percussion; Alun Person: Drums; Matt Mockford: Flute;

This tune is dead sweet, with Alun's casual beat and Ollie's gentle finger-picking. Chema's so good at finding nice hooks in the space, while Matt, Steve and I sprinkle our notes around him. There's a feel-good bass and Marcus' light organ sound all help with the positive vibe. It ends quite suddenly ...

Won't You Go?

2016 02 09 - Marcus Valentine: Keyboards; Keef Chemistry: Vocals, Synth, Effects; Jean-Michel Maheu: Guitar; Rhodri Karim: Bass; Alun Person: Electronic Drums; Sara Zaltash: Vocals; Gerry Barnett: Cello;

Some of the orchestra sat in the auditorium seats for this number. The moody melody is classic in approach. Rhodri's bass is great, as is Marcus' keyboards. You can hear a raw cello cutting its way over Alun's electronic drum sound. Sara's voice is wonderful, full of emotion, cracking beautifully here and there. I add a counterpart to her lyrics, suggesting somewhat sinisterly that I'm "never gonna go away" ...

Skating On Thin Ice

2016 02 23 - Marcus Valentine: Piano; Keef Chemistry: Melodica, Effects; Jean-Michel Maheu: Bass; Rhodri Karim: Drums; Alexandra Corral: Percussion; Matt Mockford: Flute; Alun Person: Percussion; Spudd Connor: Saw; Natasha Rosling: Flute;

Upbeat and rhythmical, we have the guitarist on bass, the bass player on drums and the drummer on percussion. When it kicks in, Chema adds a nice touch with some intermittent vocal stabs, while my melodica has a super-distorted rising effect on it, providing a consistent, if moving, hook to follow. Rhodri keeps time while chopping the beats around. You can hear the two flutes at work, like butterflies. Fab. It takes a while for Jean-Michel to come in properly, grinding the bass into a solo in places, the drums tuning in. All the while Marcus is knocking out the main rhythm on piano. It suddenly drops, then totally takes off, easing off slowly, more and more, instruments dropping out, and still slower it grinds, the flutes and melodica tooting away. Eventually it grinds to an exquisite halt as if in slow motion. Funny as ...

Hit Me

2016 07 20 - Marcus Valentine: Keyboards, Vocals; Keef Chemistry: Drums; Jean-Michel Maheu: Guitar, Vocals; Natasha Rosling: Vocals;

It's time to funk and Marcus is our tea selector. He slams out his keyboard licks, accompanied by hunky, funk outbursts, and we're all laughing at our jokes. Suddenly a tune forms out of nowhere, as Jean-Michel's guitar appears and we're properly getting down, when suddenly we're interrupted by a Cube volunteer with a message about where to find my badge-making machine. No problem, we jump straight back into it. Nothing stops the funk. Until we do. Suddenly ...

If I Was To Run Would You Follow Me?

2016 09 28 - Marcus Valentine: Keyboards; Keef Chemistry: Keyboards, Effects; Ramon Sanchez: Drums; Chema Gala: Sax, Vocals; Rhodri Karim: Vocals; Spudd Connor: Percussion;

I really like it when there are few musicians on the stage. Somehow we find a clearer sound and direction. Here Rhodri gives a superb performance on vocals. There's little else, just percussion and keyboards for the most part. The space is lovely. After a while Chema joins in on sax and gives the track its flavour. I'm tweaking the effects knobs on both sax and vocals when I'm not jabbing my iPad. Rhodri supplies a real tour de force on a great track ...

God Is A Soundman

2016 03 09 - Marcus Valentine: Keyboards; Keef Chemistry: Effects; Jon Shepherd: Bass; Jean-Michel Maheu: Guitar; Ramon Sanchez: Trumpet, Percussion; Alun Person: Drums; Tim Robertson: Trumpet, Vocals;

This was the last track of the evening's session and it just sounds like a great way to complete an album of music. It sounds familiar and probably forms the basis of many an album track, so why not here? There was some discussion about my meddling with the sound at rehearsals and whether it constitutes an addition to the sound, or interference? Time to find out. The lyrical content is pretty straight-forward, but Tim adds a passage mid-way through about God and the Devil to nice effect. We could probably have gone on all night, with the tune dropping out, then building up and up, Tim letting loose properly, but like all good things it has to end sometime and Alun ends it suddenly. The session is over and so is this album. It's all good ...

This album demonstrates the variety of music that the Cube Orchestra covers, part rock, part pop, part ballad, part salsa, all good ...
- keef chemistry

Download the zip file here (8 tracks @ 320kbps = 81mb):
(The files need to be zipped before download. This may take a while, so please be patient ...)

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Last edited November 9, 2023 4:22 pm by Keefchemistry (diff)