Thursday, September 4, 2008

C-B-S and Intergalactic FM

The Cybernetic Broadcasting System (C-B-S), located at, shut down this past July, ending a 5½ year run.

C-B-S was mainly two things:
  1. A collaborative Internet radio station overseen by Ferenc van der Sluijs, a.k.a. electro recording artist I-F (Interr-Ference). It featured vast amounts of synthesizer music, most of it either techno, electro, or Italo disco, sometimes ambient, sometimes synth-pop.
  2. A forum / community of C-B-S listeners & synth music junkies affectionately called "robots." The name of the forum was Robots For Robots.
When the station shut down, Robots For Robots posts were removed and replaced with a single thread announcing the station's demise. Immediately, a new version of the forum, nearly identical to the old, was launched by users on another site. However, the original Robots For Robots posts were eventually restored on the original site, and some new posting does seem to be occurring. Both forums are linked to in the Forums section at left.

The C-B-S broadcasts DJed and hosted by Ferenc himself were highly entertaining. His on-air style was humorous and full of energy. It was immediately obvious that he loves all the music, and yet doesn't take things too seriously. He invested thousands of hours and probably tons of money into keeping the stream going, but according to his farewell post, the station just wasn't getting enough listeners to make it worthwhile.

Archives of some of the broadcasts can be found on file sharing networks. The year-end Top 100 countdowns, based on votes from listeners, are especially popular. These shows are full of cuts from Ferenc's library, interspersed with clever station IDs submitted by the "robots". Some of the countdown tracks are so rare, the records they come from (when they can be found) trade for hundreds of Euros, and the only copies to be found on the file sharing networks were ripped from C-B-S.

Now there is word of a C-B-S radio's successor: Intergalactic FM. Not much is known about it yet, but it looks promising.

Also: This blog is not dead, just somewhat dormant. Music and information is being hoarded, sorted, organized and prepared for dissemination, don't worry. And the links along the left side have been getting updated. Mainly the changes have been in the Tastemakers section, which features music blogs -- i.e., free music sources -- you should be checking out if you're into space/synth/Italo disco and other interesting/weird tracks found by fellow crate diggers. The sites are in order with the disco-oriented ones coming first, more general ones last.

Please bookmark or link to, if you haven't already.

Thanks for visiting and reading. As a reward for getting this far, here's something you might enjoy: Evidence - Explosion of a Planet