2016 in music

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Here’s the list of 2016 albums that I’ve enjoyed the most – in no particular order.

Spring King – Tell Me If You Like To
LVL UP – Return to love
Parquet Courts – Human Performance
Full of Hell / the Body – One Day You Will Ache Like I Ache
Savak – Best of Luck in Future Endeavors
Repetitor – Gde ćeš
Martha – Blisters in the Pit of My Heart
Nothing – Tired of Tomorrow
Death Grips – Bottomless Pit
Car Seat Headrest – Teens of Denial
Ryley Walker – Golden Sings That Have Been Sung
Viva Belgrado – Ulises
Kikagaku Moyo – House in the Tall Grass
Yung – A Youthful Dream
AJJ – The Bible 2
White Lung – Paradise
Creative Adult – Fear of Life
Self Defense Family – Colicky
G.L.O.S.S. – Trans Day of Revenge
Pfarmers – Our Puram
King Gizzard & the Lizard Wizard -Nonagon Infinity
Woods – City Sun Eater In The River Of Light
Massive Attack – Ritual Spirit
Oathbreaker – Rheia
Fat White Family – Songs for Our Mothers
ABOP – ABOP
Uranium Club – Human Exploration
Descendents – Hypercaffium Spazzinate
Cass McCombs – Mangy Love
Gouge Away – , Dies
Culture Abuse – Peach
Sculpture Club – A Place to Stand
Preoccupations – Preoccupations

Youtube playlist for “Every Song Ever: Twenty Ways to Listen in an Age of Musical Plenty”

Every Song Ever: Twenty Ways to Listen in an Age of Musical Plenty” is a book by Ben Ratliff (New York Times music critic) where he is focusing on listening music in digital era we are part of. In 20 chapters, he drives you through different musical traits like repetition, slowness, speed, quietness, virtuosity etc.

What I like the most in this book, is the way he is making connections between artists in completely different genre. For example, even though the term “blast beat” was coined in the 80s and it became known after hardcore punk and grindcore bands started to use it – in his book, Ben mentions a jazz song “Salt Peanuts” by Bud Powell, which was recorded in the 1953, and references to a part of the song where “blast beat” was used for the first time, than compares it with D.R.I. song “Draft me“. And there are just many more connections that most of us probably just never thought about.

What I did here – I made a playlist of songs that were mentioned in the book. Well, at least most of the songs – because some I couldn’t have found and for some I just picked one song from the album that was mentioned. Songs are sorted in the order of appearance, but are not clustered in chapters.

jspm support for Capistrano

Capistrano

Quite recently, I started to use jspm for one of my Rails projects. Since I am also using Capistrano, I have needed to run a few tasks during each deployment. Because of that, I wrote two simple tasks and bundled them up in a gem that can be used with Capistrano 3.x.

capistrano-jspm is published on my Github account, so feel free to use it and contribute to it.

And if you are thinking about using jspm for your Rails project, Michal Cichra wrote a nice article about it.

Farewell, 2015

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Here we are, still in the first half of the first month of 2016. As usual, I’ll write down few albums that I’ve really enjoyed in 2015 and that you (human) should also check out if you’re not familiar with some of those from the list.

2015 was also a year when last.fm decided to do a redesign of their service. With all the changes, users have lost a lot of useful functionalities – some of those forever, some for just a very long time. This is also a main reason why I don’t have a clear overview of all the concerts I attended in 2015 and why this time I won’t share a list of top concerts.

List of Top Records, in no particular order:
Cloud Nothings / Wavves – No Life For Me
Courtney Barnett – Sometimes I Sit and Think, and Sometimes I Just Sit
Mourn – Mourn
Beach Slang – The Things We Do To Find People Who Feel Like Us
Viet Cong – Viet Cong
### – Svjetlo
BC Camplight – How To Die In the North
Grimes – Art Angels
New Order – Music Complete
Beirut – No No No
Protomartyr – The Agent Intellect
Hop Along – Painted Shut
Sheer Mag –  II 7″
Fred Thomas – All Are Saved
Sun Kil Moon – Universal Themes
Ought – Sun Coming Down
G.L.O.S.S. – Demo
Kurt Vile – b’lieve i’m goin down…
JEFF the Brotherhood – Global Chakra Rhythms
And So I Watch You From Afar – Heirs
Thee Oh Sees – Mutilator Defeated At Last
The World Is a Beautiful Place & I Am No Longer Afraid To Die – Harmlessness
Low – Ones and Sixes
Colin Stetson & Sarah Neufeld – Never Were the Way She Was
Fuzz – II
Mutoid Man – Bleeder
Goat – Commune
Baroness – Purple
Godspeed You! Black Emperor – Asunder, Sweet And Other Distress
Ratatat – Magnifique
Institute – Catharsis
Moon duo – Shadow to the Sun
Nikki Louder – Trout
Sufjan Stevens – Carrie & Lowell
Built to Spill – Untethered Moon
Hallway Swimmers – Advertised
The Black Heart Rebellion – People, When You See the Smoke, Do Not Think It Is Fields They’re Burningsta
Self Defense Family – Heaven Is Earth
Modest Mouse – Strangers to Ourselves

Using React for an open source generator of custom Countries data

getCountries()

Few years ago, when I was still just a newbie in a programming world – I sacrificed one Sunday and wrote an open source MySQL, Firebird, XML, JSON, CSV and YAML generator for custom Countries data, which I have also published on Github. Well actually, at first it was just MySQL generator, but then open source community contributed to it and built a lot of other awesome functionalities – for which I am really grateful and which was also a great experience.

Up until now, code quality of that project was in quite some band shape – mostly because I was not such an expert when I wrote it for the first time.

More than half a year ago, I wanted to try React on a real project, and getCountries was a perfect example. At that point, I started to rewrite the project, and today, after a lot of larger breaks, I finally merged the Pull Request and brought the Reactification process to the end.

Thanks to everyone who helped out (specially zigomir), and feel free to continue to use the project and to contribute to it.

Make a (visual) change

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We (humans) are a visual beings and because of that, it is easier for us to connect individual life events with something that we can visually represent back to ourselves.

While I was learning for my faculty exams, preparing for my master’s thesis and in general dealing with many different types of responsibilities and tasks, I have noticed something interesting about my behavior. It was nothing new, because I remember it doing it earlier life stages, but this time I’ve interpret it to myself in a different and more meaningful way.

Studying (for example) can be sometimes really boring and non-visual process, which of course depends on your interests. You can write things down, draw sketches, graphs, whatever helps you, but still – even after you pass an exam or whatever you’re dealing with, nothing in your life changes visually and your success feels a bit unreal.

To make this more fun for myself, I’ve added a bit of sauce to this kind of tasks. As an example, I will take my masters thesis, which I’ve successfully brought to an end couple of weeks ago – lastly. When it came to the final stage of thesis and when I’ve had to prepare myself for a final presentation and defense of my work, my room and my environment also experienced a big change – it experienced a big mess, someone would also call it a “creative mess”. By nature, I am kind of a arranged type and I like to keep things in order, but when it comes to this kind of stuff – when there is one big task which needs your complete focus, then environment and arrangement becomes irrelevant and I need this feeling of “chaos” and a feeling that something is on-going.

As the days and hours of final presentation were approaching, my room was more and more in a mess. But after I’ve finished with the final presentation, the first thing I did when I came home – I cleaned my room, I threw bunch of my things away (especially notebooks), I rearranged my stuff, I washed my clothes, I did a visual change – to have a better perception of what I’ve done and to kind of award myself with a new order.

This kind of behavior is something that helped me finished those kind of tasks – especially the boring ones. I have really short attention span and to succeed and finish boring tasks, I have to keep entertain myself, and this is just one way of doing it.

Get the best out of 2014

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I don’t know where will I go for a New Year’s Eve, but for sure I can come up with few great records and concerts that for me rounded up year 2014.

Here’s the list – in no particular order.

Top music records (released in 2014):
Mogwai – Rave Tapes
Cloud Nothings – Here and Nowhere Else
Ought – More Than Any Other Day
Ought – Once More With Feeling…
Parquet Courts – Sunbathing Animal
Ben Frost – A U R O R A
Sun Kil Moon – Benji
The War on Drugs – Lost in the Dream
Nothing – Guilty of Everything
Nils Petter Molvær – Switch
Merchandise – After the End
Earth – Primitive and Deadly
White Lung – Deep Fantasy
Caribou – Our Love
Swans – To Be Kind
Lantlôs – Melting Sun
Afghan Whigs –  Do to the Beast
Warpaint – Warpaint
DZ Deathrays – Black Rat
Big Ups – Eighteen Hours of Static
Restorations – LP3
A Silver Mt. Zion – Fuck Off Get Free We Pour Light On Everything
Lagwagon – Hang

Top concerts (in 2014):
Red Fang @ Channel Zero, Ljubljana
fonija @ Klub Gromka, Ljubljana
Lunar, Senata Fox @ Močvara, Zagreb
Iron Chic @ Attack, Zagreb
Industroika @ Super8, Budapest
Mozes and the Firstborn @ Gala Hala, Ljubljana
BRNS @ Kino Šiška, Ljubljana
Neutral Milk Hotel @ Tvornica, Zagreb
Peter Edwards @ Mota, Ljubljana
Lunar @ Gala Hala, Ljubljana
Kvelertak @ Gala Hala, Ljubljana
Mort Mort Mort @ Pomol, Koper
Lagwagon, Night Birds, A Wilhelm Scream, Bane @ Punk Rock Holiday, Tolmin
Deafheaven @ The Garage, London
Darkside, Caribou, Nils Frahm @ Arena, Pula
TRUS!, Kleemar @ Ladjica na Ljubljanici, Ljubljana
Lantlôs @ Klub Gromka, Ljubljana
Manu Delago Handmade, Nikki Louder, Jonathan, Girl Band @ Wavves, Vienna
Repetitor @ Wavves, Bratislava
The Canyon Observer, Blaž, ABOP, Litostrojska Darkbluz Experiment @ 24hpp, Ljubljana
Swans @ Kino Šiška, Ljubljana
Liars @ Kino Šiška, Ljubljana
Merchandise @ Channel Zero, Ljubljana
Sólstafir, Esben and the Witch @ Gala Hala, Ljubljana
ŠKM Banda @ Gledališče Glej, Ljubljana

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