– Welcome Alex ! So glad you stopped by ! Can you introduce yourself to our readers a bit ? Your country/age/studies/present job…etc…etc. Everything you want to share with us …
– Hey there, my name is Alex Goldblat aka Dr.j/Delysid , and I am living in Israel not far from Tel Aviv city. I was studying Industrial & Management in College but right now I am working as a software tester in a IT company, dealing with insurance (not so fancy, I know…He!he!). My current job makes me living in the moment. It is quite a nice job with good salary and nice people around, so I can say I am quite satisfied with this kind of living. I don’t see myself to change job.
– How long have you been active in Commodore 64 demo scene ? How did you get involved into it ? What is your role (or field of expertise) ?
– I can divide my C64 demo scene to 2 time frames. First time frame was from 1989–1992 and the second one is my comeback, approximately 4 years ago when I joined Delysid group. For the first time frame I started in a quite lame group called : The Gold, which consisted from myself and my brother. We ripped off intros and did really lame stuff as I wasn’t a programmer. Well, I wanted to program but I guess I wasn’t enough talented to code back then, so I mainly did ripping music tunes. Later around 1990 after the demo Vector Victory was released, I was joined The Force group, which was an international group split to 3 countries : Israel, Italy and Australia. Of course I joined the Israeli division as a mega swapper and did a little cover drawing and modem trade with the leader Daniel Bouzaglo, back on the time.
It was a really great time with plenty of cool releases from my group. C64 scene was also bubbling up with awesome releases of demos, music, cracks… you name it. It was a really cool time. These were the happy days of the scene with dozens of cool groups and massive releases from everyone along, with so many talented musicians and coders. It was the time of my life !
– Have you been involved to Amiga or PC demo scene as well ?
– I formed The Force on pc on 1997 till around 2000. I remember we released 2 nice small demos based on OpenGL but nothing much than that. It was cool for this time but actually today I would never come back to it. I probably will not return to the pc demo scene in the future. Time will tell of course…He!he! 🙂
-Have you a music theory background ? Have you studied it or you compose by experience ?
– I am afraid not ! I don’t have any music background except being a big music fan, especially of the ’80s sound. I studied to compose alone through Scarzix/Offence tutorials on the youtube, along with guides from the CheeseCutter’s author, Timo Taipalus aka Abaddon/Triad [ http://theyamo.kapsi.fi/ccutter/ ] and also from the CheeseCutter’s facebook group with a lot of nice tips.
Delysid - Magical Wizard - Released @ X'2014 - Code : Dr.J/Delysid
– Do you make use of a midi controlled synth or you prefer writing your music on paper, note by note ?
– I am not there yet, I mean I still feel as average composer so I don’t use neither midi or paper. I don’t think most musicians use paper as they can jam with the music tool or record music on nice app which are very sophisticated and easy to use even if you are not a musician.
Dr.J/Delysid - Straight Lines
– Your favorite C64 musician(s) ? Your favorite tunes / demos ? Please name your heroes !
– Wow, to many to mention !!!..I am afraid space is too short to answer it, but I give a little try.
For the current times, I love Linus, Scarzix , LMan , stinsen , jeff ,drax ,dane ,zardax , flex and Spider Jerusalem.
For the ancient times, I love like everybody else the real master : Rob Hubbard, Martin Galway, Jeroen Tel, DRAX (also today!), deek, jch, guy shavitt, laxity, Johannes Bjerregaard, Charles Deenen, Geir Tjelta, Lords of Sonics, griff, Thomas Detert, Reyn Ouwehand, Metal, scorita and moon/flash inc. I am sure I just forgot at least 20 names but this is what I can recall now.
For the demos, I like all the elite groups nowdays: Offence, FLT, Prosonix, Censor Design, Oxyron, Booze Design, SHAPE, Hitmen, F4CG, Atlantis and MAYDAY !
Dr.J/Delysid - Flames On Fire
– Which chip do you prefer to create your music, the warm and familiar sound of 6581 or the crystal clear 8580 ? Do you find any pros and cons between them ?
– I am using only 8580. I think is much better using its filters’ capabilities more than the 6581 which sometimes sounds a bit noisy and not accurate, especially in different types of 6581 that came later. I prefer to stick to 8580 which is a kind of standard today for the present musicians. I believe they pull out more than this chip than the older one. This doesn’t mean we have to reject 6581, there are millions of cool 6581 from the early past, but today I guess things has changed and more and more musicians dealing only with 8580 chip.
Delysid - With Love - 2012 - Code : Dr.J/Delysid, nomiStake/Delysid
– Did you ever use or work with SwinSID chips ? Will it finally make it to be a perfect SID replacement ?
– No, and I honestly didn’t heard about it yet. I am sorry for that.
– Can you give us a picture of your working environment (studio, favorite trackers / progys…) ?
– I am not sure that I am the coolest person to ask but I have to say that I am quite simple in my work environment for music. I first load CheeseCutter 2.8 [ http://csdb.dk/release/?id=136752 ] on my pc, loading my instrument package, and… start to compose ! In most cases I start with the drums channel (which is my favorite !), after I am ok with the drums sequence, I am moving to the background sequence trying to create a nice combination with the drum instruments and bass. I love to experiment nice rhythm or a special sound and later I do the leading channel which takes me a lot of time to figure which direction my tune is heading. I am stuck or run out of ideas very often, but sometimes it flows ok and I can release a nice tune. I don’t really think that I am an expert music composer. I need to improve my skills learn a new tricks, using the slides more wisely, control the instrument much better than today. I still have a lot of knowledge to achieve, it is like coding or bicycling…the more you practice, the more you get better.
– Do you use trackers made for C64 or you prefer working with some more sophisticated ones like Milkytracker, Schism Tracker, FamiTracker etc ?
– I am using only CheeseCutter 2.8 editor at the moment, which I find is the best cross tool today. It is very good with a lot of nice features, based on the famous JCH player. I also know that GoatTracker [ http://csdb.dk/release/?id=95864 ] is a good one, too. It is a matter of choice. Once you get used to one tool / tracker, then (in most cases) you stick to it and don’t ever leave it.
I can’t compose on any emulator or in the real hardware. It’s too much complicated needing much more time to handle it. I love easy stuff 🙂
– From A to Z, how long does it usually take to complete a perfect SID tune ?
– I believe there is no accurate script to estimate the time to make a good SID tune. For an expert musician I guess it takes less than a week, for others it may take a month or even more. I can’t really know. I believe for a really good one tune you need at least a few good days to test and try more the tune till you get to the perfect sound you desire, and this takes a while. But again it’s an individual job for me…I can say it takes a lot of time and in most cases I am not pleased with the result. I think then that I can make it better by changing some sequences to be cooler and smarted.
Delysid - New Life - 2011 - Code : Dr.J/Delysid, nomiStake/Delysid
– How harsh could be the whole process to compose a tune ?
– Again sorry to repeat… I believe it is an individual process for every single musician. Some can release a tune quite easily with a lot of fun and relaxing atmosphere, some can “eat shit” till they release a tune. It is a harsh process with a lot of nerves and complications. I assume the much relaxed environment you can create, the more easy process you get. It’s always good to be in “zone”, be in the mood to create a tune. It is like in art, you have to be total focused. However people have a real life, and after all for most of us composing on C64 is only a hobby and not a full time job so it’s a question of dedication and willing to do it. Some will not release an average tune, some are waiting till they compose the perfect sound and some I think will not release it ‘coz a lot of reasons…
TRIAD - Release The Cheese, C64 Music Disk released September, 2013 DELYSID TREASURE - DR.J [ #25:25 ]
– 2SIDs…3SIDs…Do you enjoy them ? Any plans to release similar tunes in the future ?
– I am very old fashioned so I don’t use 2 or 3 SIDs. Sorry, but I love the classic way 🙁
– How did you join “Delysid” ? …any stories to relate ?
– This is funny story ! I was watching some nice C64 uploads that Reject have made to YouTube, I contacted him and after a short time he asked me to join Delysid, together with nomiStake. I didn’t even know the guyz and said to myself “let’s try and see…“. Since then I am really proud to be a member of this small but warm group. We have always seen ourselves as a middle class group, which does retro stuff and not really compete the elite groups. We are always trying to get out the best of us and I can tell, we are doing stuff from only of fun circumstances, nothing beyond that.
– Many people think that demo sceners are somehow bonded to software piracy. What do you want to say to them ?
– Well, I am not a part of this software piracy. I am staring from outside of it. I don’t pros or cons of it. It’s there ! Sometimes it’s nice, sometimes it’s lame. I like what Nostalgia is doing, like making remakes of cool games and special editions for classic games on Easyflash or real stock C64s.
Delysid - Delysid Island - 2013 - Code : Dr.J/Delysid, nomiStake/Delysid
– I am listening very often to lots of people saying that “We (retro system fans) are wasting our time with dead and obsolete machines”…or…”Why are we spending so much time to something no profitable…”
What could be your comments for this kind of nonsense ?
– Mate, anybody can do anything he wants ! If someone doesn’t want to go into C64, I can totally understand. Don’t ever forget that C64 scene is very tiny and small, if comparable to the mid ’80s till 1992 C64 scene or even Amiga scene back then. I think as in general thought that if something gives you fun just do it, simply as that ! If you really love it, why to resist yourself of doing that you love ?
I see the C64 today as a kind of good art, full of really superb demos, music, gfx and design. I am really proud to be a member of C64 scene, with the majority of members are very cool dudes. It makes me happy to meet them on chats, facebook or real parties which are the coolest thing a scener can take.
– Have you ever thought to quit C64 scene ?
– I did it back on 1992. Today, I don’t think anything like quitting the scene !
– What are your thoughts about C64 demo scene’s future ?
– I can’t forecast the future of the scene but I do believe it will be cool and good as today, even maybe greater with better releases. I don’t think the scene will enlarge dramatically but it could be very nice if more new groups will appear to release more demos so it will be a wider variety of styles and art. We are still strong and there are a lot of releases in the major parties especially @ X’ parties in Holland.
– That’s all !.. quite a short list, isn’it ? 😛
– Wow ! Is this the end ? Yeha !…it was very nice and cool ! Thank you very much GeoAnas ! It was really fun to answer your nice interview mate. Wish you all the best !
– Thanks for being with us Alex ! See you @ your next release !…