The NBT Review 71

Peter Comes From Neverland – Peter Comes From Neverland (independent release)

I like a twist in a newly born song, and the twist comes quickly on the opening track here (Trigger), starting off as what seems to be an acoustic shuffle, it explodes mighty prettily into a full blooded rock creature. Then the harmonies, then the slightly left of centre poppy tangle, oh yes, this is one of those songs that sound effortless, from thought to player as it were, but is tightly constructed, woven, into a perfect listening pleasure.

Next track, Airplane, is well named, it is that breed of tune that was made for introspection AND movement while Absorb turns the lights down low, shuts the bedroom door and seduces the intellect with a Grizzly Bear/Iron and Wine vibe.

The secret here, I think, is this singers tightrope walk ‘tween detachment and observation, and the intimacy of a small room performer.  A good example of this is the tune, Not A Beatles Song, which will soothe my hunger for a new Sufjan Stevens tune for a small while.

The EP plays out with the cool and satisfying strangeness of what sounds like New Order or the Cure going acoustic, Peter entrancing with that Robert Smith trick of setting mood for at least 80 or so seconds before a vocal is lightly added, allowing the song to build in mood and depth, so that the listener doesn’t want it to end.

The artist’s upcoming full album should be a revelation

http://www.myspace.com/petecovington

You can hear tracks from this EP on the NBT Podcast

http://nextbigthing.libsyn.com/songs_burning_brightly

 If you use Internet Explorer you can stream snippets of a couple of the Tunes here

                               http://www.nextbigthing.co.za

  (After the intro Click on the ‘#Just want to look around# text it will take u thru to next page)

   A chart made up from browsers rating and listening to the song streams can be found here:

                                      http://nbttopten.podbean.com/

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The NBT Review 37

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Songs Of Sins And Redemption – The Molenes (Independent Release)

Take in the purity of Roots Americana, dirty it lovingly with hints of feedback, splashes of political anger and huge gulps of driving rock n roll, and you have the first two tracks, the gateway into the world of very human very fragile saints, and  sometimes beautiful sometimes scary and sinister devils.

As just music this collection is oh so easy to fall in love with. There is not an instrument out of place, no arrangement over blown or underdone, and the nuanced interplay between musicians (who follow each others rhythms as instinctively as brothers) is thrilling.

Of course it’s not just about the playing and the tunes, but a journey towards the light with all the perilous thoughts and shadowy images that the odyssey entails.

Stealing from the track, ‘Bring the Bottle’ these are often snapshots onto a world that is ‘One Righteous bloody mess!’ and as the cover of the CD suggests, there is  an allure to the decay, there is something deeply uplifting in the fact that the broken souls will keep standing, keep moving on.

And the Molenes will be the dance band they party  loud to, in wicked stops along the way.

Find out more here

http://www.themolenes.com

And you can hear the Molenes on this episode of the NBT podcast

http://www.nextbigthing.libsyn.com/index.php?post_id=495389

Foresight/Poorsight- The Johns (Ghost In The Cupboard)

Rewind the film, slowly. A train sneaks back tragic into a tunnel, and the sun slipSlides behind a cloud. With rolling thunder, the drama of ‘Sun For Days’ unrolls. This is the end. NO, actually this is a seductively brutal beginning.

The theme of loss continues, made strangely sweet with a power pop chug, kinda like Mathew Sweet fronting a new wave Byrds. These are songs about dancing as close to the edge as possible, sometimes accepting that the fall is the most wonderful thing, these are songs that SEEM to be about giving up, but look/listen closer and they are about surviving the dull chaos of break ups and fractured dreams.

The singer is a cynic, the singer is conflicted, and the singer is a romantic, he searches through the shudders of the songs, through leftovers of a rock n roll explosion, the shattered remains of affairs and love, and he tries to explore the truth of things. And with this band, these are his findings.

This is no one man quest though; this band is a whirling strumming thrumming beating heart of a music machine, creating swirls and harmonies, a subtle modern wall of noise.

Through the loneliness, this band wants to reach out and touch you.

Find out more here

http://www.thejohnschicago.com/

Catch songs from this album on this weeks NBT podcast.. Going out this Friday

http://www.nextbigthing.libsyn.com

The NBT Review 19 Part Three

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No Hang-Ups – Dialtone (Independent Release)

Hey it’s the early 70s; hey it’s when Brian Eno still loved being in Roxy Music, hey its Rick Okasek fooling around with a dream Beach Boys monster created by Mathew Sweet.

NO

It’s 2008 and you are listening to ‘Summer’ the opening track of Dialtone’s new album.

It’s a skewed new wave, incorporating  the tension of the best of indie of the past years, with a love for the hooks and sly glamour of the neon ghosts from way back then.

The single, ‘ Emo T-shirt’ is a ragged anthem for those self aware college fans tired of the too clean sad eyed beautiful fakes that sing to them normally.

This is what happens when you take the pristine structure of the PoP song for indie kids, and roll it around in the street and dirt outside the punk club.

Stand out track and a glimpse of edgier paths soon to be followed, is, ‘Still Sleeping’ which manages to combine the scary side of Cheap Trick along with the quirky emotional harmonies of leftfield artists like Sufjan Stevens.

This is a CD to be played often, allowing its (not so) tender charms to eat their way inside your rock n roll heart.

Find out more here:

http://www.dialtonemusic.com

 

Jonah’s Revenge – Matt Tyler (Dannyboy Music)

As the songs roll past, images are concocted of a Texan Troubadour, singing a rowdy bar to contemplative silence, or a Springsteen creating rough demos in the middle of the night, or a denim clad Eagles roadie finally going it alone, with his own stories and secrets.

There is Americana and folk and heartfelt rock, all instruments played by this Birmingham native, utilizing a left of centre warmth and a natural feel for personal , intimate moments.

With a voice just on the right side of rough, Tyler allows the songs to soar melodically through uncluttered arrangements, hooking into the mind with a wry pop sensibility.

Stand out tracks for this reviewer are ‘Icarus’ which swoops and dives through the air like the character in the title and the sweetly orchestrated, ‘Lorraine’

If you can imagine the aural lovechild of Buckley in his folk phase, and early David Grey, this album captures that perfectly.

To listen further go here

http://www.matttyler.co.uk/

 

Hear tracks from both these albums on the NBT Podcast going out on the 28th Nov

http://nextbigthing.libsyn.com/  

The NBT Music Columns : The CyberPR Blog (Ariel Publicity)15

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The Man of the Night 

An Interview with Guy David of Night Guy Podcast

 

After starting with an electronic music podcast in Hebrew, The Night Guy found a desire to expand his audience and chat about his life a little; thus in January 2007 – despite a brief delay of the intended launch – the first English episode of The Night Guy podcast aired.  The debut was part musical and part autobiographical, and in August of 2007 the format expanded to Night Guy Electronic and Night Guy Rock.  Today we sat down with Guy David, the broadcasting guru behind the Night Guy podcast series.    

 T: We recently spoke with Anji Bee, who is both musician and podcaster, just as yourself, tell us a little about you music and also if you see the dual role of podcaster/musician as an emerging trend?  

G:  I think allot of musicians are discovering the podcasting media as a means of promoting their music. That’s how I started back in March 2006 with my first podcast, The 16th. I think both podcasts as a media and music have allot in common. They have many parallels  in structuring and the amount of creativity that goes into them. That might be the reason that so many musicians are drawn into podcasting lately.

T:  Do you play your own tunes on your podcasts?

 

G:  On The 16th I play my own tunes. That’s what this podcast is about really, my own music. On the Night Guy podcast I played my tunes on the first episodes since I was talking about my life, and some tunes where relevant to what I was saying. I also try to match other music to what I’m talking about. I currently focus more on other people’s music since there are so many great musicians who should be heard, and I want to help out any way I can. I also want to celebrate my love of music by playing the music that I like, and I happen to like the music of independent artists more then the corporate record companies driven junk.

T:  What got you involved in second life and what benefits do you see in it as a form of social media?

 

G:  I came into SL out of curiosity, then I discovered there’s a thriving art community in SL. I’m a digital artist as well as a musician and a podcaster, and I discovered it was really easy to open a virtual art gallery in SL, so at first I tried to use it as a means of promoting my art. Later, when I got more involved in podcasting, I discovered there are many podcasters hanging around in SL. Since I live in Israel, it’s the closest thing I have to meeting them, so I started hanging out on Podcaster Island and Podshow Island and lately on Edloe and Nowhereville where most of my podcasting friends hang out. I’m also planning on performing my own music in SL partly using a stream and partly using virtual music statues I created especially for this. Music has been one of the most exiting things to come into Second Life. Where else would I be able to see Lovespirals live? There are no geographical limits anymore, only time zone limits.

 

T:  Any other forms of emerging social media/social networking your  involved with that our readers may not be hip to yet?

 

G:  I guess I pretty much go to the same places everyone goes. I have a MySpace page, a FaceBook page and I also Twitter allot. Social networking is about communicating with other people, so I just hang out where everyone is. I see no point in hanging out in a virtual empty room 😉

 T:  What advice would you have for an aspiring podcaster in building listenership?
G:  Podcasting is a community. Collaborate. Find podcasters that are going your way, doing things that are either close to what you’re doing or things that you find interesting. Take The Chillcast with Anji Bee for example. One of the first podcasts I listened to is Dave’s Lounge, and they did this thing where they switched for one episode, Anji did a Dave’s Lounge episode while Dave did The Chillcast. That’s how I found out about The Chillcast. Now I listen to both regularly.  Find innovative ways of collaborating with other podcasters, and people would have a better chance of hearing about you. I’ve been a consistent participant on the 100 Words Stories podcast’s Weekly Challenge (http://podcasting.isfullofcrap.com), and I know that not only some of my listeners come from there, but also some people I now consider friends came from this.

T:  What’s next for Night Guy? 

G:  The Night Guy podcasts are now in hiatuses. I’ve been developing a new comedy podcast in Hebrew, so I took some time off to do this. When they return in mid March, there would be some changes in them. Night Guy Electronica is going to be based on the playlists from my old Hebrew podcast for now, while the scope of Night Guy Under The Rock is going to grow and include more music genres. On Night Guy I’ll be focusing more on interviews, short stories and essays about the future. I’ve been fascinated about some of the developments I’ve been reading about in the fields of Nanotechnology (building machines on molecular scale) and Claytronics (matter that can be shaped in the real world the way CG graphics shapes virtual matter on a computer), and I want to talk about how those things would affect our lives in the near future.

 

For more from Guy, check out NightGuy.podshow.com

The NBT Music Columns : The CyberPR Blog (Ariel Publicity)12

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The Technological Challenge with Ajay Chandriani

By Trevor Dye When you’re submerged in the world of technology, it all seems to come second nature, but what if it didn’t?  There’s a constant debate about the rapid technological advancements in our society and how fast we can adapt.  Recently, we asked Ajay Chandriani of Mixed Bag Sound System to share his views on the state of the change.

 What was your reason behind starting Mixed Bag Sound System?

 

I needed an outlet for my stressful job that involved recruiting people for one of the top three search engines. I don’t sing, paint (except for some weird computer art), or play any instruments (I put those away decades ago) so the options for an outlet were limited. Playing music everyday (CD or radio in the car) alleviated my stress to a certain degree, but not enough to soothe the nerves. To make matters worse, regular radio was boring, repetitive, limited to stars and their hits, and didn’t have enough new music to introduce to the masses. It felt like a waste of time and a total rip-off for the listener who was/is looking for something fresh to put in the ears. How many times can you listen to ‘Stairway to Heaven’ – come on, a band like Led Zeppelin has more in it’s catalog than that one track, or a couple of its other hits. You get the idea. That’s how it is with all other bands that are popular. Injustice to the listener (and artist) is what I call it considering the amount of good unheard music there is in the marketplace. Unheard also applies to the vast catalog of songs by popular bands that never get played. I was terribly fed-up with the broadcast state of affairs and turned OFF the darn radio in disgust. Imagine turning on the radio to one of your favorite preset stations and knowing what the next song was going to be on the playlist, or knowing the artists that got repeated everyday, every hour, every minute. What a bloody wash!!!

 How did it get started? 

I met up with a friend from my dot com past one day and he reminded me about my dream of being a DJ, my vast music collection that I could introduce to the masses, and a little broadcast site from our early days that was now one of the big boys of Internet radio – http://www.live365.com. I remember, the day this site launched I was absolutely elated with the concept of the everyday little guy having control over his own little radio station and playlist. I was thrilled beyond words, but had to shelve this in the dark corners of my mind due to time constraints in the real world of getting a dot com newcomer up and running. Anyway, fast forward about six years, I’m stressing, meeting a buddy for lunch, he reminds me of this shelved dream, I go home and check out the site, fork over the subscription, and launch as Mixed Bag Sound System in March 2006. Don’t make a dime from this venture (wish I could), but I’m happy as a clam getting music out to listeners in over 40 countries and counting. Thanks to Ariel Publicity for contacting me and introducing me to tons of new bands and sounds (no, I’m not getting paid for this plug), and my listeners the world over thank you. I am so darn happy playing music I own and like, and I know my listeners love what they’re hearing. You will hear Led Zeppelin on my station, but it won’t be ‘Stairway……….’ I rest my case.

 Do you consider yourself tech savvy overall? 

Yes, completely and totally. I asked my son the other day if he knew how to play a record, and he was clueless. What more can I say. I come from the era of the record player. My house even had one of those wind-up Gramophones that played 78rpm’s, although that belonged to my granddad. I have seen all the technologies (records, eight track, cassettes, Walkman, CD, etc.) evolve through my lifetime and I have bought and used every one of them including the current favorite, the iPod. Our generation has been very fortunate to experience the birth and growth of various technologies through the past few decades, and we have grown alongside them. Tech savvy, you bet!!!!

 What do you think it takes to be tech savvy in today’s world and what are some of the key components of that skill set (like what are the most important things to know to get by I guess)? 

Tech savvy really applies to the older generation, and I stated my case in the previous question. We had to grow with each new technological advancement or be left behind. The current generation, or those starting with the ones born in the 1980’s had the tech savvy gene inborn (Walkman, CD’s, video games, mp3’s, etc.) and didn’t have as much to develop or didn’t have to take a major leap forward. It’s all similar and connected now. All thumbs is what I say – texting, gaming device controllers, etc. It all comes instinctively now, no training required. PacMan was amazing when it came out. It was a whole new ball game and experience getting your thumbs into action. I don’t like texting, and would rather pick up the phone and call you, but my dad who’s almost 80 loves texting, as does my 15 year old. Go figure. The only thing you need to be tech savvy nowadays is to have money to buy every new technology that hits the shelves, and the gumption and patience to work the gizmo. How many 80 year olds have you seen with iPods and iPhones and computers. Plenty…….

 Do you think certain generations will be left behind, or is there potential for everyone to adapt to technological changes? 

Every technology nowadays is plug and play and easy as pie to use. Cable, mobiles, Internet, you name it, is getting easier everyday.  You no longer have to be a programmer to be able to use computers, or a rocket scientist to understand or use other technology. Companies profit and consumers benefit when everything is easy to use and made for the masses. Mass consumption is the name of the game, and the only way you’ll get left behind is because of you and your reluctance to adapt to changes.

 What’s in store for the future of Mixed Bag? 

This is my baby, my dream, and it’ll be around as long as the listeners are tuning in. I try not to bore my listeners with retreads and based on the stats, so far, so good. A big question mark in keeping this dream alive is the Internet Radio Equality Act that has been seesawing in Congress. The record companies want to raise royalties for hobbyists (such as myself) on Internet radio while giving regular radio all the breaks. If royalties go up, I won’t be able to afford my subscription and I’ll shut down the station. I’ll regret losing my hobby, but darn if I’m going to pay these guys another dime more than I’m shelling out now. The artists, exposure to their music, listeners, and sales will suffer, but to heck with these greedy glut companies. They are already suffering a slowdown in sales, and this is just the beginning of the big wallop the consumers are heaving back at them. Enough is enough!!! I have a closet full of vinyl and cassettes, thousands of CD’s at an average $17 a pop (something that costs $2 to produce) and I say no more. Buzz off. I am a hobbyist doing this for fun, promoting new and older music, not making a dime, not sharing in the sense where listeners can download the tracks, so why rip me off when I’m promoting your product (that I bought) on my hard earned dollar. I buy the music, it’s my time, I pay to be on the bandwidth, promote your product without you compensating me, so where’s the justice in making sure I go silent. A time is coming when more bands like Radiohead will sell their album on an honor system minus the middleman…….coming soon to a website near you!!!! Here’s hoping these corporate suits back off and let us hobbyists do what we do best…….introducing music to the masses on our dollar. If they don’t want the free plug, you know what they can do with it…….

 Check out more from Ajay at http://www.live365.com/stations/djeclectic  

The View From OurAfter

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An Article by John Phillips

http://www.myspace.com/ourafter 

The Overall Music Scene of U.S.A. and Pennsylvania:

The everlasting effects of technology and corporate America have made the musician (or artist) into the one thing that music itself should never become, a consumer product.   While the modern day musician shares his love and passion for allowing the general public to connect with his music and emotion, the modern day influence of music has been watered down into a senseless product that the general public barely has enough comprehension to understand.  Don’t believe me, watch Rockof Love on VH-1.

The true artists of today are the ones to be discovered through the internet and unsigned channels.   Most of the great artists aren’t given a chance due to the fact that their lyrics aren’t on a sixth grade level for your everyday person to understand, or the music riff isn’t the same thing that has been produced one thousand times already However, some scenes are standing out these days has a very eclectic music scene.  Since I have traveled across the U.S.A performing, I have noticed that Pennsylvania is a state that belongs mostly to the Rock, Metal, and Indie scene.

 The cities that stand out the most are Philadelphia, Harrisburg, and the Scranton-Wilkes Barre area.  The thing that I love the most about the Scranton/Wilkes-Barre area is that there is an enormous amount of talent of every type that is literally waiting to explode on a national level.   

Some note worthy bands and acts are Panacea, Spitcan, Dr, Horsemachine and the Moneynotes, Tom Graham, The Let Go, The Five Percent, Ashfall, The Drama Club, Cabinet, George Wesley, Clarence Spady, The Swims, Tigers Jaw, and the list goes on and on!

Even though the economy is faltering in some areas, we continue to work harder and strive towards a bigger picture that we have well within our sights. Check out some of the reviews through publications such as
www.theweekender.com and www.ecweekend.com just to see how much we believe in our area.

Being from Scranton, I have always loved where I live.   I have performed in cover groups, original groups, done concert promoting, etc.  I love being actively involved in sharing great things with my community and exposing them to musical cultures that they normally don’t get to see.  Being the president of the Steamtown Original Music Showcase in my area has proved to be a great asset to also building an ever growing awareness of original music in the N.E.P.A. scene.

My band OurAfter has grown to be a massive force in the Alternative Music Scene in N.E.P.A. and I am very proud of that.  We have performed all across the eastern seaboard and will be expanding even more.   This band will be releasing a new CD due out in Oct of 2008.  The band has found itself in it’s identity, music, emotion, and overall character. The fan base is ever growing and the possibilties are limitless.
Welcome to our world.  You should all come visit us sometime.

John Phillips
OurAfter

The NBT Music Columns : The CyberPR Blog (Ariel Publicity)11

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Woman Behind the Monitor (and the Mic):  Anji Bee  “The Sexiest Voice in Podcasting” Anji Bee of the Chillcast talks about the show and her double life as both podcaster and musician.   T:  How did the Chillcast get its start?   

A:  I guess you could say The Chillcast got its start with college radio DJ’ing. After 3 years of doing various shows and working in management at a college radio station, I was pretty well hooked.  Then I discovered Internet radio, and started creating both live and prerecorded Internet radio content – including interviews with indie bands like Hungry Lucy and Sunburn in Cyprus.  Eventually podcasts were invented, and I put 2 and 2 together.  Podcasting was better than radio because listeners could tune in whenever was most convenient for them – which seemed really revolutionary!  My first podcast was actually  Chillin’ with Lovespirals, which Ryan and I launched to help promote our 2nd album, Free & Easy.  Shortly after, I started getting permissions from indie band friends to create a weekly music show podcast – because you have to understand that at this time the podsafe music movement was barely getting started!  Adam Curry had just begun his Podsafe Music Network — which is actually how he and I met and became friends, when Lovespirals joined the site.  Adam played us on the Daily Source Code, and then we started talking back and forth on his podcast about Creative Commons vs BMI and all those kinds of things.  To make a long story a bit shorter, I put together a few fledgling episodes of The Chillcast, hosting them on the Internet Archive site and C.C. Chapman, who was really active with PodShow at the time, pitched the show to Adam and PodShow management, and I was signed as one of the first group of podcasters to the new PodShow Podcast Network.

 T:  What have you learned from operating on both sides of the broadcasting world, as a podcaster and as a musician?  

A:  Good question. Podcasting is a great way to communicate with your fans, to give them a sense of who you are as a person, as well as to inform them of your latest projects. You can really build a sense of brethrenship, not only with your fans, but fellow indie musicians and fellow podcasters. Podcasts are more intimate than a newsletter, less time consuming than a forum, and both more immediate and long lasting than a personal appearance. I’m surprised more bands aren’t doing podcasts, actually.

 T:  With over a half million downloads of the Chillcast, what is the top tip you would give aspiring podcasters in terms of building such an impressive listenership?  

A:  Consistency. Being consistent with the quality, content, and output of your show is really important. Listeners want to know they can rely on you to provide whatever experience it is you’re providing on a regular schedule. If done well, your show becomes a part of your subscriber’s life that they look forward to, and you don’t want to let them down!

 T:  Chillin’ with the Lovespirals was one of the earliest band podcasts, what was the impetus behind such inspiration and foresight?  

A:  Well I mentioned this briefly in your earlier question, but the idea was to share information about the new album we were releasing, and what better way to promote an album than with the music itself?  We had shared audio interviews we’d done with radio stations in mp3 format on music sites for years, so I knew people liked to listen to us talk about our music and band experiences. We have all the recording gear here at our disposal, so it just seemed logical to produce our own audio content and make it available via our site. We had fun doing it, too. At that time, iTunes was just launching their podcast directory, so getting listed on that was a real thrill.

 T:  Why should a band be PodSafe?  

A:  Podcasts are a very low cost promotional tool. Unlike radio, it’s very easy to break into the podcasting world.  There are still relatively few bands vying for attention on podcasts. If your music is good, you’re bound to get noticed. And podcast subscribers are truly interested in music. These are the cutting edge people who have sought out an alternative form of entertainment; they’re serious. If they like something they hear on a show, they actually go out and buy it. I get email and comments all the time about buying music from my shows — in fact, I got one this week from a guy who was sad that Sun Dula Amen wasn’t on iTunes yet, because he wanted to buy it! And of course, I know for a fact that I sell my own CDs from podcasts, I see the proof from orders on the Lovespirals Webstore.

 T:  You’ve said, “an indie band can make more money selling less CDs without a big label” so where should the revenue be coming from?  

A:  Everyone’s experience is going to be different, but in the case of Lovespirals, we have personally been able to make more money selling less CDs having released our music on our own label. When you consider that standard royalties paid per CD are between $1 and $2, I mean, come on — you’re going to need to sell an awful lot of copies to make any appreciable amount of money! And even then, you’re only paid quarterly, so it will take a long time to see anything come in. When you sell your CDs yourself, especially directly from your own website or at live shows, then whatever money is made is all yours, right away. And then there’s the money made from digital sales and licensing. Its a lot of work to do on your own, I won’t deny that, and most people probably aren’t willing to take on the additional responsiblity, but we did and it seems to be working for us.

 T:  What’s next for The Chillcast and Lovespirals?  

A:  Lovespirals are continuing to promote our new album, Long Way From Home. We have a remix EP off of the first single, “Motherless Child,” being released digitally, and we have a remix contest lined up for the second single, “This Truth,” with Peace Love Productions. In all likelihood we’ll do a digital release with the winners of that contest in early 2008.  The Chillcast just launched a Video Edition, which is a new weekly feature for the feed. The first episode included a video by Karmacoda, and the second includes Beth Hirsch. As for the regularly scheduled audio show, I’ve got a great little chillout Christmas episode, and a really amazing extended DJ mix for New Years coming up.

 

For music from Lovespirals go to www.Lovespirals.com

 To check out what’s playing on the Chillcast go to AnjiBee.com