Arts & Events

Overlooking the Sound: “Capsule Gang Chill Hour”

This week: “Capsule Gang Chill Hour” with DJ Ugly Flax Butter, Thursdays from 9 to 10 p.m.

For the last radio show review of the semester, I bring you a show by possibly one of the most recommended DJs on air this semester. Will Peil has two different shows and a vast knowledge of all genres. Yet electronic is where his heart lies, and this hour displays the best of mellow electronic beat music and ‘future-y hip-hop.’

The best tracks of the hour included one vocalist with a stellar ethereal voice with harmonies that stood out from the rest of the more “instrumental” choices. Another was a track called “Green Garden” by an artist called DJAO, who visited campus and did a show in Oppenheimer Café the week before. Other artists played were Teebs, XXYYXX, and stacy (emphasis on the lowercase s).

Many artists Peil knows personally, through friends, producers and labels. Most he pulls directly from his extensive music library going with what he thinks will mesh well together. All the tracks and artists mix well together to create a pretty cohesive yet diverse show. By the end of the hour, DJ Ugly Flax Butter had mixed a bit of hip-hop and a bit of spoken word into his repertoire, blurring the edges of genre before he handed it over to the next DJ.

Most impressive was the easy, smooth way DJ UFB was able to talk and do his thing with the records all at the same time. Although he may not have been impressed with himself, the listeners in the booth were impressed with the seamlessness of most transitions. I learned a little something about organizing songs by beats per minute and mixing tracks and samples. On occasion DJ UFB will even mix spoken word from rappers, or crazy Eastern philosophers like Alan Watts into his tracks. He plays the tables like he would an acoustic guitar. You know that groove that musicians get into? Well he was in that groove, starting and stopping records, messing with volumes and tempos, using the noises to make layered beats.

For someone who knows little about electronic music and mixing tracks, this was an accessible show. The theme of the show—mellow and chill—does not scare the listener with the more insane noises that have become common in some electronic music. There were nature sounds, orchestral recordings, wood blocks, chimes and even more unidentifiable but comforting sounds. It was a rather seamless show, that I would call a good introduction to this kind of music.

The DJ goes with his music as well—that is, he has a very mellow radio persona. Little was said in between or over the tracks. My favorite part of the on-air segments had to be the ending taglines DJ UFB used to sign-off like the age-old advice “brush your teeth.” Perfect one-liners for the goofy yet laid-back DJ behind the mic.

KUPS represents an important part of Peil’s Puget Sound experience. First semester the eager freshman applied for a show in every genre, which speaks to his musical diversity and love of music in general. That is really his mission to his listeners: bring the good music home to share. Next year will be a wild card for Peil as he is looking to produce more music himself, but his love of music and radio is guaranteed to continue. Look for him in the stacks.