Some interesting things I found recently:
# NAMM Oddities 2010
Barry is back with the NAMM Oddities of 2010:
My NAMM experience went really quite smoothly this year. I didn't have to deal with any injuries or camera failures.
The show was a little smaller than last year, which was most apparent in my favorite haunt, Hall E. There were some open areas where there weren't any booths set up at all. That being said, there was no shortage of invention and innovation at the show. Because of that, I think the great unsung heroes of the Oddities need their own motto: "Neither snow nor rain nor heat nor global economic collapse stays the mad genius from the swift creation of strange musical devices."
# skewworks Pyxis – How would you like to be able to run compiled programs from a uSD drive? Maybe you'd like to create an app that's closed source? Or perhaps you're just looking to display full screen 320×240 bitmaps using the Arduino. If any of those sounds good to you than Pyxis is the OS for you.
# Use the WiiMote as a musical instrument
Winko Erades van den Berg on making music using a computer and a Wiimote:
An article that appeared on the Create Digital Music website, about making music using the WiiMote and a computer, drew my attention. Several hints were given on the how to, but as always in doing new things the information was scattered everywhere and nowhere.
After reading many articles and watching many videos I found out how to realize a working setup for myself. In this article I’ll try to explain the steps needed to create a working setup for yourself.
# Primer on new Echo Nest search_tracks, capsule, and get_analysis APIs
Echo Nest co-founder Brian Whitman demoed the alpha version of a new set of Echo Nest APIs.
At Stockholm Hack Day we’re announcing three or four new APIs that are going to stay in our “alpha” sandbox for now. These are officially unsupported but we will work with anyone who has a use case for them. For now, the instructions will stay here until we promote them to production APIs.
# Mellodrama: The Mellotron Movie
Mellodrama, a documentary by Dianna Dilworth, explores the rising and falling fortunes of the Mellotron – the first musical keyboard to "sample" the sounds of other instruments – from its birth in a California garage in the 1950s, through its dominance on concert stages in the 1970s, through its almost religious cult of followers in the 2000s. From the Beatles' "Strawberry Fields Forever" to Black Sabbath to Kanye West, Mellodrama is a 50-year odyssey of musical invention, revolution, betrayal, and rediscovery.
Includes 8-page booklet with essay by Mike Pinder of the Moody Blues, Mellotron and Chamberlin production timelines, and more.
# SampleRadar: 316 free Parisian-style samples
MusicRadar.com's latest batch of free samples is here:
The collection we're giving you here has a distinctly French flavour, being inspired by the likes of Kavinsky, Justice, Mr Oizo and the artists on the Kitsuné label. Download it and give your music a sense of Parisian style – you'd be 'in-Seine' to miss out!
# Drum machine shootout
Plughugger has a comprehensive review of Audio Damage Tattoo, Audiorealism ADM and Sonic Charge Microtonic.
This review compares three software drum machines and how they stand against each other. Three audioguns, twenty one sonic bullets. Two swedes and one american. Drum roll, please…
While there are a whole bunch of drum synthesizers on the market and many of them are very competent – my selection ended up with Audio Damage Tattoo, Audiorealism ADM and Sonic Charge Microtonic. My primary criteria was that they should be available for both PC and Mac – and they should be able to create more than one type of overall sound. I chose not to include any of the drum machines from the polish developer D16, as each and every drum machine is locked to a specific model and besides – I don’t own licenses for any of them.
Waldorf Attack is a classic that I seriously considered to include, but decided against as it doesn’t contain a sequencer. Also, three products against each other is clear as a german sausage soup. But the Waldorf Attack is a fantastic drum synthesizer, especially for creating weird electronic percussion noises.
I love Microtonic (and the D16 drum machines), but I think it’s inevitable I’ll end up getting Tattoo at some point.
# Mini Kit: PH001
Timothy has posted a nice little drum kit:
This is a mini kit with bd, snare, 2 ch’s and a oh. They are from one hits I have either recorded from drum machines or found around. Processed with eq and compression and some final touches to each sound. Hoping to give you a nice starter kit with a solid foundation. There is also a Ableton Live session with the kit in a drumrack with further processing on.