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How it all began...
1997 - 1998

I started tracking early in 1998, after listening to some modules with Cubic Player the previous christmas. A finnish computer magazine (Mikrobitti) was holding a mod music contest and the final round was going. There were instructions in the magazine on how to listen to the finalists, and I was intrigued. It wasn't long after this when a certain someone (who was to be later known as Zealan, but a dubious J.Pukki at the time) told me that I could make music just like that as well. I was introduced to FT2, and I soon started learning how to use it. I was thrilled about the concept, and stupidly started uploading my music to a Finnish BBS, Dragon's Cave BBS later the very same year. At that time I made music under the alias "Raven".

Looking for a group
1999

Some time in 1999 I was invited to join a group called "awr", and I was an awr-member for less than one year. The group then broke up, and I joined another group, "Prototype". For a brief moment I was a member of both pt and awr. While I was a pt member, I made my first appearance at Trax In Space, which was some time in 1999. I left prototype because the group was not organized well enough. I also opened my first website (which was horrible!) in '99.

Soon after, LiD (at the time known as Jocker, who is now pursuing a professional career with a smaller team with the name Other Sight) invited me to join Other Sight, which was the name of the group at that time. That was my best experience of being in a group so far, as I was teamed up with very good musicians who were also really nice people. As soon as I joined Other Sight, I decided it was time to clean up my history. (I had been releasing poor songs earlier as Raven). I changed my alias to Saboteur. This happened in the final quarter of 1999.

Finding my way
2000

LiD decided to change Other Sight, which had some 5 official members at the time, in 2000. The reorganization pretty much meant that the group dissolved. However, some friendships outlived the group. I opened the website Wall of Thoughts (dubbed after my very successful song with the same name) some time in 2000, while I was still an Other Sight-member. All in all, the year 2000 was a good year for me - I released many songs and got good coverage at Trax In Space.

The Silent Year
2001

Since Other Sight, I felt content being solo instead of in a group. I went to Assembly 2001, but I was in over my head. I was in a critical migration phase from using FT2 to ModPlug Tracker and my MP3 compo entry was pretty bad. "Unite" was better as a song, but I guess it wasn't really suited for the big screen. 2001 was a silent year. I couldn't finish many tunes for a variety of reasons, but I did generate a huge pile of incomplete ones. My music was played at the Rekry-convention at Tampere, Finland in 2001, for which I received a compensation. It was a new thing for me. All in all, however, 2001 was a silent year.

Changes
2002

2002 was a year of many changes. Trax In Space finally died out, taking with it all my accomplishments and leaving my old website, Wall Of Thoughts, poorly defunct. At the time I had over 3,000 downloads at TiS and 5,000 visitors in Wall of Thoughts. I had gotten some very nice TiS reviews along the way as well. I later gave up Frontpage and I found it gutwrenching to edit the source code of Wall of Thoughts by hand, so that marked the end of that site. I spent more time working on Visual Basic and writing AV.NET which I am using to write this very text. I learned XHTML and CSS and became very interested in creating my own web server. By February 2002 I had successfully created the site that later was to be named saboteurweb.com. Soon I started learning PHP, and when I realized all the amazing things you could do with it, I was hooked. And I still am.

But the domain wasn't the only thing that changed. It was by sheer coincidence that I once spotted a conversation about something called Renoise on the #modarchive IRC channel at DALNet. Renoise was an entirely new kind of tracker that marked a change in my music. By the time version 1.1 was released, I was convinced that this amazing tool was something worth embracing and supporting. It was time to say goodbye to MPT, and I offered $45 worth of support to the Renoise devteam in the form of my registration. Even with all this, I only managed to finish a handful of songs in the entire year 2002. I wasn't even able to release them, mostly because it had became quite difficult with TiS gone.

Going On
2003

The year 2003 saw the birth of the Renoise.com songs page which became my personal substitute for TiS. It gave me much needed visibility, some feedback and plenty of traffic - although mostly just direct downloads. I also put up my own dedicated server for the domain which increased my reliability substantially.

In music, it seemed I had completely lost my inspiration. I produced a lot of music, but most of it was of little interest. I put a lot of work into my sound quality though, to create a more professional sound. Instead of trademark melodies and progressions that dominated my music in 2000, most all tracks I wrote this year carried a different, more ornamental feeling (because of the different progressions and audio tricks and stuff like that). Drums were particularly in focus, as was distortion. (You can hear a distortion effect in just about every track I released in 2003). Many of my tracks were just about showcasing a new effect trick or drum pattern that grew into a track of its own. That doesn't mean I didn't have fun - I did, and people even liked some of the stuff I wrote. 2003 was really just about producing new music - I released lots of stuff but nothing else happened.

On some level, as I'm writing this in January 2004, it feels like 2003 was somewhat about laying groundwork for a new type of music: I went through a melodic phase and now a percussion phase - could the future hold a kind of synthesis of the two in store for me?

Slowing down
2004

The synthesis I was hoping for at the turn of the year didn't really happen. Some of the music was more refined, some of it not quite as. Still, a few rather nice tracks emerged from the crowd and a few older ones got finished. Things were looking pretty much the same as in 2003: Somewhat-well-produced but uninspired and bland tracks came along, mixed in with a few better ones.

Completely opposite to the tracking, life-wise, big changes happened. I moved out of home in with my partner, and suddenly many things changed. More time went into work and daily routines, and I had lost a lot of the privacy I used to have in my musicwriting. That adjustment period followed far into 2005. What I would have needed to get back on the wagon would have been a separate studio room, but that wasn't available.

The manifestation of this adjustment was very clear: After the 18 releases in 2003, the amount of finished tracks almost halved in 2004, to 10 - and more: 4 of those were second-rate remixes, and nothing was released after August. Demodir and unfinished attempts aside, that more or less indicates that I simply wrote 66% less music.

No art?
2005

Areas of focus in my life continued to shift in 2005 and the music faded in the background. Only one entirely new track in the whole year, with two other second-rate releases made.

Was 2005 a dead end? Am I done for? I shouldn't think so. But it will be a while before I can make a grand return to the scene.

Time: 19:37 / Uptime: 769 days, 23:49
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