muted tones

february 03

this entry is from february 03. click here for more information about the curator, and to hear the finished work.

The Belmont Milds

september 28th, 2002

Dateline: T-dot. Saturday, Sept. 28. February 2003 is just over four months away. Not too soon for Jonny D. to start thinking about his Muted Tones curation entry. And it’s never too soon for him to stop referring to himself in the third person.

Okay. I’d just like to say I’m really excited about this. Let me just get the Oscar acceptance speech stuff out of the way. I was so thrilled and surprised when Josh asked me to participate. I used to always whine and complain that I never got asked to do anything sexy and exciting like curate an international online music series. Like what, do I have to legally change my name to “Jim O’Rourke” or something? Now I no longer have the right to be such a big whiner and complainer — so, thanks Josh. This is also my first experience with weblogging, or “blogging” I believe you kids call it.

It’s a sunny summer day here at the beginning of autumn in Canada. The leaves still haven’t begun to change. This summer has been so gross, I suspect they never will. Or if they do, they may stay that way forever. These days my worldview swings so wildly from utterly hopeless and apocalyptic to ridiculously optimistic and positive. Anyone know what I’m talking about?

ANYWAYS (to borrow a Chuck Klosterman-ism), last night I went over to my buddy Brad’s house to make some noise. I haven’t known Brad too long, I met him earlier this year through Wavelength booking, but we hit it off pretty much right away. He makes really great electronic tracks on his own, and performs with a band/live PA thing called Anorak — though they just changed their name to North — and DJs as well, under various different monikers. I took my bass up the street to his place, right at the top of the hill which separates downtown Toronto from the encroachment of suburbia (and is actually the old shoreline of glacial Lake Iroquois, but I digress). Brad lives with two other guys in a house that’s nice and big by T.O. standards, and he has a whole room dedicated to his music set-up. His gear array is positively sci-fi compared to my spartan keyboard table, though he describes it as “pretty ghetto.” He’s got a good handle on sequencing, running an old ‘80s drum machine through a MIDI sequencer, with lot of other little synths and samplers running through various effects. I can’t say I understand how it all works.

So Brad plays some tracks and loops he’s been thrown together on his own. I play along, dropping in dubby Tortoise/Joy Division basslines. It sounds great. Brad’s beats are all brittle and broken up — they sound like they’re in bizarre times, but he insists it’s all 4/4. His synth sounds are alternately warm and icy — I guess the closest comparison would be Aphex Twin, but does that mean anything anymore? We work on two different songs, each basically a 45 minute jam. Since the loops just keep going and going, we can stop and take smoke breaks and just listen. Brad tweaks this and that, and I drop the bassline back in, twist it around, or try and play along on his housemate Jason’s drum kit. The second tune I help shape more melodically, as Brad builds up a keyboard part in response to my bassline, which I jam out through a sample he made of his own drumming. Brad jokes that it sounds like that song “Somebody’s Watching Me” (about as paranoid as pop hit can get). At one point I drop in the bassline to “Once in a Lifetime.” So there is a definite new wave feel going on, though I think the closest touchstone for what we are doing would be To Rococo Rot — tuneful live dub bass meets ambient electronica. I’m digging it, definitely. There are some truly “lost in music” moments during the jam that I don’t always get from my rock band activities.

We finish up around 10:30 for the sake of the neighbours and drink more beer and smoke more smokes and talk about, well, music (what else?). We decide this will be an official collaboration, so we have to come up with a name for it. I jokingly suggest The Belmont Milds, since we both smoke the same brand of cigarettes. It turns out to stick as a working title…


Sweet Leaf

november 24th, 2002

nice entry jonny! Charcoal filters all the way!!!! :0)


december 26th, 2002

Belmont Milds 4life
Cheap and good.


december 24th, 2003

Ok.... I love belmonts... A friend of mine and me got into an argument about this charcoal filter buisness, what are its benefits exactly, and what is it made of?

Reverend Maynard

january 13th, 2004

what is a charcoal filter made of???????? God you're a moron!


july 09th, 2007

I do belive a charcoal filter is made of CHARCOAL, you dumb fuck.


august 02nd, 2007

Well - here’s some interesting articles first… thet’re all very statistical, but most have good summarries you just have to look for:


REALLY long, done by big tabacco:


To all my fellow Belmont smokers out there:

If charcoal filters are better for us, great. But has anyone taken apart a Belmont filter before? There used to be two pieces, a charcoal half and a normal filter half. If you take it apart now, there is just two pieces of normal filter, one with bits of charcoal in it. Why less charcoal if it’s sposed to be better?

Also, all I’ve heard about Belmonts lately is bad rumours. Like that charcoal filters are bad for you and they’re going to make them illegal. Or that they cause tumors.

Anyway, that’s my two cents.

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