Avicii’s True, and the end of an EDM era

August 07, 2018, 11:21 AM

True was Avicii’s first studio album, and it’s awesome because it mixes electronic dance sounds (mostly progressive house) with influences from genres like bluegrass and country in a very nontrivial way. (His later work starts to incorporate reggae, hip hop, you name it. It’s great.) The result is a really refreshing and positive take on dance music; it’s danceable but also resonates really deeply. Avicii’s music is wonderful because of the youthfulness and joie de...

avicii folktronica progressive-house

Kavinsky’s OutRun: reimagining the 80s via synthwave

August 06, 2018, 2:27 PM

OutRun was the first album that really got me into synthwave, which is this niche genre inside electronica devoted to capturing the aesthetics of 80s film and video game soundtracks in modern-day music; Kavinsky’s music captures that retro-futuristic spirit perfectly. The album’s sound is lush, dark, and brilliantly synthetic; rapid, synthesized arpeggios blend with rich, synthesized organ basslines and retro, synthesized drumlines.

french-house kavinsky synthwave

Ratatat’s self-titled debut does it all

August 05, 2018, 8:55 AM

Give Evan Mast and Mike Stroud, two guys from Brooklyn, guitars, a synth, and a drum kit and they compose these crazy, nostalgic, fully-instrumental tracks that seem to comprehend the full spectrum of human emotion in 4-minute songs. Wikipedia has Ratatat’s self-titled debut album down as “electronica, electronic rock, experimental rock, neo-psychedelia;” I think the first two are closest to the mark.

electronic-rock indietronica ratatat rocktronica

Gorillaz’ masterful Demon Days

August 04, 2018, 10:18 PM

Demon Days is Gorillaz’ sophomore album and continues their brilliant tradition of mixing hip hop, electronic, rock, and indie influences into a wonderfully eclectic sound. Gorillaz, of course, is the innovative British “virtual band,” consisting of animated members 2D, Noodle, Murdoc, and Russell; Damion Albarn (of Blur fame) is the musical mastermind behind the group, while Jamie Hewlett draws the characters and concocts increasingly creative ways to integrate the “virtual” band experience into real life,...

gorillaz hip-hop indie

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How Daft Punk’s Discovery changed my musical life

July 20, 2018, 2:29 PM

Discovery is a dance masterpiece that, in many ways, changed my musical life. Up until around 8th grade or so, I’d mostly just listened to popular music on the radio, and of course, you only hear popular songs, and mostly singles, that way. Discovery wasn’t only some of the first real dance music that I liked back in middle school, it was the first full album that I gravitated towards strongly enough that I felt...

daft-punk french-house

Why REST?: An introduction to Angular 2

December 15, 2016, 9:31 PM

Over the past few weeks, as I’ve been putting the pieces together for the new ångstromCTF frontend, I’ve learned a lot about how Angular 2 works and what it’s useful for. Having never used a real JavaScript framework before in my life, Angular 2 has really blown me away with the attention to detail and form that its designers had. Unlike other framework that I’ve used for GUI applications in the past, like Swing or...

angstrom angular restful

First thoughts on ångstromCTF

December 15, 2016, 9:10 PM

One of the main things I’ll be talking about on this site is this competition I’m running called ångstromCTF. ångstromCTF is an online high-school cybersecurity competition with all sorts of problems, ranging from cryptography to binary exploitation to forensics and web hacking. So far this year I’ve worked to revamp our competition platform to be scalable and maintainable.


Starting out with Jekyll

December 15, 2016, 9:08 PM

This is my first blog post! I’m excited to be working with Jekyll and Sass to produce this blog and hope to be able to provide lots of useful content.