Music lover. For me, there's no such thing as “cheesy” music.

In the 1990s, I maintained and contributed to numerous discographies, FAQs, mailing lists and fanzines about artists, labels, and genres, including ambient music, the ZTT label, the Art of Noise, Moby, The Future Sound of London, Sun Electric, The Orb, The KLF, and C-Schulz. I co-ran the VRave chat server and Hyperreal, the first electronic music and rave information archive on the Internet. I ran the ambient music mailing list, and I wrote reviews and participated in discussions on various other electronic music related mailing lists. I was an ambient/downtempo DJ at raves & clubs in the U.S. Midwest, and was associated with the well-respected music/art/party collectives Illuminator and ele_mental. I worked for six years at a used record shop which is still in business today. I was also briefly a live sound assistant at various ska, reggae, and indie rock shows and video shoots.

Building on my HTML and system administration experience, in the 2000s I had a well-rounded Web technology and computer programming career with significant experience in Java and Python. In the areas of character encoding and certain technologies, I was near the top of my field and contributed to several standards. I also became deeply interested in Discogs, Wikipedia, and audio file formats.

I'm a huge fan of rhythmic music, strong melodies, and nostalgic escapism, so I'm way into classic techno & house music and all of its influences, including original-era disco and Italo Disco. I dig the Balearic and Afro/Cosmic aesthetics, '60s & '80s pop, New Wave, funk/soul/R&B, old hip-hop, jazz, classical, you name it. I especially like music that combines or reinterprets established styles, as long as it takes me on a journey.
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Grading items for sale—I use the same "Goldmine" standards we used at the shop I worked at in the first half the '90s:

I may replace CD case parts, but only with exact matches. Unlike many sellers, I do include cases in "sleeve" grades. VG+ is my standard sleeve grade for an undamaged, lightly used case with near-mint inserts. G+/VG is for minor damage/creases/bends on an insert, hub tooth damage, a small crack or heavy/dense scratches on the case

For the media, VG+ ranges from spotless to a few tiny, light scratches and minor nicks from normal use & cleaning; VG if there's a lot of scratches or any long/weirdly shaped ones; and G+ or lower for heavier marks that are obvious in any kind of light. I test everything to make sure it plays or rips without error.

To me, Mint only means sealed and without shelf wear (like right out of the box from the factory) and NM means open/inspected but apparently unplayed and with no shelf wear; both of these grades should be rare for secondhand CDs! Feel free to ask for photos and samples.
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Vinyl track duration measurement: The following info is for people who are reviewing my edits to track durations on vinyl releases. The durations I enter are always based on measurements taken from my own rips to an uncompressed format. I carefully trim the audio in a wave editor to within ¼-second of the start and end of musical content, so that any between-track pauses, tape hiss, or tape bleed-through normally isn't included in the measurement. I then use the duration the editor tells me, but since Discogs doesn't support fractional seconds, I round up or down, usually up (though not always*). If there are special considerations, I'll mention them, but feel free to ask me questions.

My turntable is a well-cared-for Technics SL-1200M3D model I bought new in 1999. Like all 1200s, the motor is direct-drive and is controlled with "quartz locked" digital circuitry, making it one of the most accurate, speed-wise, in the industry. The M3D model is unique in that instead of a detent/click at the pitch adjustment slider's zero-point, it has a separate pitch reset button, which sets the pitch adjustment to zero regardless of the slider position. I always leave the reset button engaged when ripping. I also use the built-in strobe to visually verify that there's no drift, other than the normal and very slight "wow" oscillations. Therefore I'm fairly confident that my measurements are within about 1 second of correct. Incidentally, I've found that sometimes the same song can appear on different releases made from master tapes that were playing at slightly different speeds, thus they have slightly different durations.

* I admit, I'm inconsistent in my rounding. I'm never quite sure what to do with fractional seconds between about 0.200 and 0.499. I mean, it doesn't seem fair to say that something measured as 6:05.389 is "6:05" when it's actually a bit more than that, especially if there's no fade-out. But then again, is it fair to say it's "6:06" when it doesn't quite reach that mark?

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Image credits for this profile:

avatar = a Tumbeast, by Matthew Inman. CC-BY-3.0 license.

background = a little part of "Alice in Wonderland" (2005), a painting by Sergey Tyukanov. Not licensed; hopefully he doesn't mind.

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Just in case you thought the major labels kept detailed info about what they have actually released, here is an actual email I received in 2006 from an intern at Atlantic Records:

I just finished checking out the Strictly Rhythm discography on your website and I found it extremely helpful. I'm in the middle of trying to compile complete chronological discographies for all 12" released on the following labels:

Atlantic Records
Elektra Records
Warner Brothers Records
Tommy Boy Records
Cold Chillin' Records
Sugarhill Records

I realize your website is mainly for electronic music, but since your Strictly Rhythm discography was so helpful I wanted to know if you had discographies for any of those labels or could point me in the right direction for finding them (google hasn't been too helpful and discogs.com has incomplete discographies for those labels). Any help would be great.
Thanks

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Recent Activity
posted a review of The Underprivileged (2) - The Underprivileged. 1 day ago
This tape has a surprising number of good ideas—rather a feat, considering it's by an unknown quartet of rich suburban high school grads who were trying to sound like Echo & The Bunnymen and any number of other alternative rock heroes. There's a bit of ... See full review
posted a comment on Yellow Magic Orchestra - YMO Remixes. 5 days ago
The Orb remix is in mono on other releases. Is it mono here, too? What about the A-side?
posted a comment on A Positive Life - The Calling. 6 days ago
Loved'ub Mix has 20 seconds more of the swooshy noises in the intro. Otherwise identical to Ambient Mix.
posted a comment on A Positive Life - The Calling. 6 days ago
The videos currently attached to the One A.D. releases only include the original mix, which is on the One A.D. CD, but the Ambient Mix is the last track on the CD, and it is the only version on the LP. The Ambient Mix on the CD is the same as the ... See full review
posted a comment on Eddie Fowlkes. 8 days ago
Eddie Fowlkes was a part of the fledgling Detroit techno scene alongside Atkins, May, and Saunderson. The quality of his music was not quite up to par in those early days, but he eventually did tap deeper into his talent, more or less keeping pace with ... See full review
posted a review of DJ Terry Mullan* - New School Fusion Vol. 1. 9 days ago
MW-Ravers couldn't get enough of this mixtape at the time, and the tracks by DBX and Funky Green Dogs are must-haves to this day, but the rest of the mix is kinda tepid and does not really do justice to Mullan's skills or his typical sets at raves back ... See full review
added ABC - Poison Arrow (New Re-Mix) to their collection. 10 days ago
submitted Induction - Gone. 10 days ago
added Lewis James / Helen Clark - While Others Are Building Castles In The Air / Old Fashioned Garden to their collection. 13 days ago
submitted Walter Van Brunt / Elizabeth Spencer - And A Little Child Shall Lead Them / For You. 13 days ago
submitted Albert Spalding (2) - Alabama-Plantation Melody And Dance / Habanera. 13 days ago
submitted Walter Van Brunt / Burton Lenihan - What A Wonderful Mother You'd Be / Memories. 13 days ago
submitted Venetian Instrumental Quartet / Armand Vecsey And His Hungarian Orchestra - Dream Of The Tyrolienne / O Sole Mio. 13 days ago
added Rae Eleanor Ball - That Naughty Waltz / Venetian Moon to their collection. 13 days ago
added Thompson Twins - Hold Me Now (Extended Version) to their collection. 24 days ago
added Sweet Exorcist - C.C.C.D to their collection. 26 days ago
added Sweet Exorcist - C.C.C.D to their collection. 26 days ago
added Erik Dahl - Anti-Instrumentations to their collection. 29 days ago
added Various - BASF-Sound Chromdioxid to their collection. about 1 month ago
added Lipps, Inc. - Funkytown to their collection. about 1 month ago
posted a review of Spiritualized - Lazer Guided Melodies. about 1 month ago
As reviewed by me in December 2000:

Fans of Spacemen 3 and Slowdive should enjoy this one. It's hi-fi shoegaze, with the distortion and noise safely reigned in, effectively lifting a haze that had been obscuring some fabulous psychedelic pop ... See full review
posted a review of Susumu Yokota - Sakura. about 1 month ago
As reviewed by me in December 2000:

Yokota's Sakura is a collection of brilliant, warm chillout themes, opening like the latest Biosphere, navigating Apollo territory for a bit, melding into nectarine downtempo around 'Hisen', all the while ... See full review
posted a review of Todd Terry - Todd Terry's Greatest Hits. about 1 month ago
As reviewed by me in December 2000:

This CD is a digital edit (a DJ mix assembled on a computer rather than a live mix set) of classic Todd Terry tracks from 1988, plus 3 tracks from 1994. The music is great, but there's just one major, major problem ... See full review
posted a review of Laurent Garnier - Early Works. about 1 month ago
As reviewed by me in March 2001:

I bought this compilation of tracks from 1992 and 1993 to get the monumental theme 'Acid Eiffel' on CD, and was surprised to find that every track on the disc exceeded my expectations and was at nearly the same high ... See full review
posted a review of Moby - Move. about 1 month ago
As reviewed by me on August 29, 1993:

The first of many more Moby releases on Elektra, the "Move" EP is diverse and energetic, a refreshing change from his Ambient album which received mixed reviews on the net. The title track is an upbeat, ... See full review
posted a review of The Irresistible Force - The Underground EP. about 1 month ago
As reviewed by me in August 1993 (look, I was young and excitable):

The music has a somewhat different sound to what is on Flying High yet it is still really good. "Underground" is tha shit, a pumpin', thick trance cut. The Atonal ... See full review
posted a review of Various - A Brief History Of Ambient Volume 1. about 1 month ago
As reviewed by me in August 1993:

Guh. Guh. Wubba wubba. Tha Shit. Unngh. Music here from 1974 to 1993. All of it.. fantastic.. take Pete [Ashdown]'s reaction to Orbital 2, multiply it by Jon [Drukman]'s reaction to Tales Of Ephidrina, and you ... See full review
posted a review of Fuse* - Train-Tracs. about 1 month ago
As reviewed by me in December 1993:

Train Abuse: A "hard" mix, trying to be "intelligent" with syncopation and dynamics, but ending up being just a noisy, bubbly stew of the same old distorted & reverbed 909 noises. Reminds me of 808 State's ... See full review
posted a review of Various - The Ambient Groove. about 1 month ago
As reviewed by me in February 1994 (as predicted, I like this record a whole lot better now than I did at the time):

This EP from the forthcoming compilation of the same name shows some promising growth for the monotonous ESP label. These tracks are ... See full review
posted a review of Various - A Brief History Of Ambient Volume 2: Imaginary Landscapes. about 1 month ago
As reviewed by me in February 1994:

Yes, once again Virgin scoops up a smattering of their back catalogue, this time thinking it's excusable to call this a lesson in ambient music as long as they put in the liner notes that they realize it's a ... See full review
posted a review of Shinjuku Thief - Bloody Tourist. about 1 month ago
As "reviewed" by me in February 1994:

Shinjuku Thief are 3 guys: Darrin Verhagen, Francois Tetaz, and Charles Tetaz. I don't know where they're from or anything more about them. Their only other release is an album they put out themselves, limited to ... See full review
posted a review of Ozric Tentacles - Strangeitude. about 1 month ago
As reviewed by me in February 1994:

2 years ago so many promos of this disc were floating around that nobody I knew (myself included) bothered to listen to it because we figured it must be crap. Arrgh! Why did I take so long to check out the Ozrics?! ... See full review
posted a review of Edgar Froese - Epsilon In Malaysian Pale. about 1 month ago
As reviewed by me in February 1994:

This was Froese's second solo album; he released about half a dozen albums between 1974 and 1983. Don't let the short length fool you! Both tracks are arranged as short progressions that make the songs seem much ... See full review
posted a review of Tangerine Dream - Poland: The Warsaw Concert. about 1 month ago
As "reviewed" by me in February 1994, in excruciating detail:

An oldie but goodie from the pioneering electronic rock band that unintentionally provided the foundation for what we now know as ambient house and trance techno. Edgar Froese's 25+ year old ... See full review
posted a review of C-Schulz - 4. Film Ton. about 1 month ago
As reviewed by me in February 1994:

The whole album is pretty short but seems long. It is meant to be digested whole; the tracks don't sound as diverse out of context. It's not boring, though, and has an amazing quality, like their labelmates Shinjuku ... See full review
posted a review of William Orbit - Strange Cargo III. about 1 month ago
As I reviewed it in April 1994:

Summary: SCIII is a dynamic and exquisitely produced album that draws on a variety of influences, but it's not for purists.

Musically the strongest of William Orbit's many projects, the Strange Cargo series is ... See full review
posted a review of Leftfield - Backlog. about 1 month ago
Ignore this review I wrote in April 1994; I like every track now:

Summary: Only half of this overpriced compilation is worthwhile.

This compilation of Neil "Leftfield" Barnes' singles from 1990–91 is not worth paying full import CD price for, but it is ... See full review
posted a review of Shinjuku Thief - The Witch Hammer. about 1 month ago
As reviewed by me in May 1994:

Summary: Dark, dark, dark, evil, brooding, threatening, exploding, dark, mean, evil, dark, dark, dark. Gothic in the traditional sense, orchestral and ethereal, intense, and dark, oh so very dark.

I was just going to say ... See full review
posted a review of Pete Namlook - The Definitive Ambient Collection. about 1 month ago
As reviewed by me in May 1994:

Summary: Barely defines ambient, but a halfway decent sampler of 1992–93 FAX label releases. A few eyebrow-raisers, a few stinkers. Good for FAX lovers without deep pockets.

You can save a lot of money picking up the ... See full review
posted a review of Lights In A Fat City - Sound Column. about 1 month ago
As reviewed by me in May 1994:

Summary: Didgeridoo-dominated earthy ambient. No complaints. None of it really grabs me, either, but I think it is meant to be more hypnotic than digestible.

A droning didgeridoo gently carries this random-ambient live ... See full review
posted a review of Horizon 222 - Through The Round Window. about 1 month ago
As reviewed by me in May 1994:

Summary: The definitive soft (but not mellow) trance techno album beyond compare. Required listening for everyone who ever said techno was cold.

The trance-techno arm of ambient-industrial figureheads ZovietFrance, ... See full review
posted a review of The Future Sound Of London - Lifeforms. about 1 month ago
As reviewed by me in May 1994 (see also my less charitable review from 2005):

Summary: I didn't need of change of underwear after I first heard it, but I think I just didn't have ... See full review
posted a review of Chapterhouse Retranslated By Global Communication - Blood Music: Pentamerous Metamorphosis. about 1 month ago
As reviewed by me in May 1994, a time when I used phrases like "techno-dub" despite having very little understanding of techno or dub:

Summary: Good spacey ambient, not too thick, not too sparse, with enough creativity to keep you interested and it's ... See full review
posted a review of Baked Beans - Baked Beans. about 1 month ago
As reviewed by me in May 1994. (What is with the Art of Noise references? This sounds nothing like them!):

Summary: Repetitive development of themes, rich and full, never synthetic. Late night soundtrack for dreamers. Very good stuff.

Its ironic that ... See full review
posted a review of Babble - The Stone. about 1 month ago
As reviewed by me in May 1994:

Summary: Rich ambient dub in a pop style, comparable to William Orbit's Strange Cargo III, but better (in my opinion!). Babble are the reincarnation of Thompson Twins, and The Stone is their best album in ... See full review
posted a review of Lumukanda - Araglin. about 1 month ago
As reviewed by me in August 1994:

Summary: Driving techno for hot deserts.

It's always nice to see something from Kk Records come out here in the US. As the track titles give away, this comes from the Psychick Warriors ov Gaia camp. It's not PWOG ... See full review
posted a review of Two Sandwiches Short Of A Lunchbox - Too Good To Be Strange. about 1 month ago
As reviewed by me in August 1994, long before I banished the word cheesy from my vocabulary:

Summary: A mildly disappointing one-off collaboration by people capable of much more. Trippy, bleepy, and forgettable on its own, but useful in the ... See full review
posted a review of Thomas Fehlmann - Flow EP. about 1 month ago
As reviewed by me in August 1994:

Summary: A technically superior midtempo IDM offering that is not that memorable (except for one track) but is a tasty alternative to the typical experimental techno sounds.

German dance music producer extraordinaire ... See full review
posted a review of React 2 Rhythm - Whatever You Dream. about 1 month ago
As reviewed by me in August 1994:

Summary: A quality example of the analogue-rich trance sound of 1992 that is easy to find and painless to listen to.

Even though I liked "Intoxication" I always passed over this album when I saw it 2 years ago. I ... See full review
posted a review of Peter Gabriel - Birdy. about 1 month ago
As reviewed by me in August 1994:

Summary: A brilliant collection of dark, dreamy soundtracks in the Passion vein, weighted a little more heavily on the synth side.

One of my favorite 'ambient' musicians is Peter Gabriel, the ex-Genesis showman ... See full review