Electronic music has always had a funny relationship with musicianship. It isn’t playing a traditional instrument; instead, it lies somewhere between instrumentalism and composition, between playing and conducting. Sometimes, that scale is tipped away from virtuosity of any kind.
But lately, I’ve had an increasing number of conversations with people who make the tools with which we make music about what this all means. I’ll be able to share one of those conversations in a bit, but I’m curious to hear what readers think.
Jeff Mills comes to mind. He doesn’t just DJ with three decks, he also uses a TR-909 in his live sets.
Radium Audio Labs is a blog with some interesting sound design articles on things like frozen contact mics, recording guns, coil pickup and printer recordings, and more.
Explorative adventures in sound – Part of Radium Audio, a leading music and sound design company based in London. We work with agencies, cg & animation houses, digital agencies, game developers, brands and manufacturers.
A closer look at the OP-1 portable synthesizer and controller (no release date yet though).
Last week, Ihavesynth.com got the chance to meet up with Teenage Engineering to get a closer look at the OP-1 synthesizer/sampler/controller/you-name-it. Teenage Engineering revealed their eye-catching OP-1 at Musikmesse in 2009 and the hype around the synthesizer has been massive, even though it is not yet released. We have posted about the OP-1 before and offcourse we are as curious about the OP-1 as the rest of the world seems to be.
Teenage Engineering is a great gang of 7 tech guys in a white painted garage filled with wonderful stuff like computers, synthesizers, all sorts of tech gear, an electronics shop, 3D printers, bikes, mopeds and a little dog which you can hear in the interview. The Teenage Engineering crew has experience from a lot of different areas, like the gaming industry, programming, electronic music – and it all comes together in their cozy garage.My mate Bjorn had a chat with David at Teenage Engineering, check it out in this clip.
One of my favorite hacks at last weekend’s Music Hack Day is Tristan’s Swinger. The Swinger is a bit of python code that takes any song and makes it swing. It does this be taking each beat and time-stretching the first half of each beat while time-shrinking the second half. It has quite a magical effect.
This project demonstrates how to use the Xbox Rock Band Stage Kit with Micro framework using GHI's USB Host feature….no Xbox is necessary!
This kit uses USB and it has special requests to set the strobe speed, LEDs and fog. But no worries! This still works with GHI NETMF devices. We use USB host on a low level using USBH Raw Device. This allows us to control the Stage kit as we like! It is actually easy if you know how USB works.
Tom Shear is back with another pack of free samples:
Today's selection is what used to be one of my favorite bass sounds I'd programmed for my old SQ-80 back in the day. It's very digital sounding and can add a nice bite to other bass sounds when layered. (The name of the patch was inspired by the liner notes of a Shriekback album that listed not only the gear used, but the name of the synth patches they used which pleased the hell out of me for some reason…)
The download includes 8 mono 24-bit/44.1k WAV samples of the C and G keys for 4 octaves.
Diego Stocco @ Soundcloud: In the past months I've been working on some new tracks with my Experibass. Since I built it, I discovered many new ways of interacting with it Take a look at this gallery to know more about the Experibass: http://www.behance.net/Gallery/Experibass/312989
David M. just sent us useful information on how to add internal pitch controls for both Kaossilator and the Kaoss Pad, below are his words of wisdom…
After reading about the GetLoFi Tutorial for 1799 oscillator circuit mod on the KORG Mini KP/KO and with a few of the LTC Modules on hand I decided to give it a go on a brand new Kaossilator. The conversion took about 45 minutes to do, but the results just blew me away. A real transformer for this instrument.
The Creators Project event series—a roving global celebration—launches this summer on June 26, when The Creators rolls into 80,000-square-feet of display and performance space honeycombed throughout the legendary Milk Studios in New York’s Meatpacking District.
The event is going to be a groundbreaking combination of interactive art and installations, panels, workshops, screenings, and live performances. As much as The Creators Project is a digital archive of our digital world, it is also a testament to the enduring appeal of the Real. Many of the artists within the program explore the way that digitally manipulated images, sounds, and motions converge in real time, in real spaces.
Tony Dubshot wrote in to share some of the unusual but usable, hi quality impulse responses he is offering on his Dubshot website. Includes: RE-201 Roland Space Echo impulse responses (25-200 BPM), The Quantum Hall Effects (impulse responses from nanospace), and 60 Classic and King Tubby style spring reverb impulse responses.
Charting the Beatles – Authorship and Collaboration
Michael Deal writes:
These visualizations are part of an extensive study of the music of the Beatles. Many of the diagrams and charts are based on secondary sources, including but not limited to sales statistics, biographies, recording sesion notes, sheet music, and raw audio readings.
mtXcontrol by Tobias Bielohlawek is an editor written in Processing to easily create image sequences for several output devices containing multicolor LED matrix.
mtXcontrol Editor auto detects and connects to your device. Once connected, you can draw points, lines & rows in different colors, create multiple frames and manipulate them. Add, delete, move, fill, copy & paste of frames is supported. Play all frames by different speed, realtime update the device and save your work as image file. If supported (e.g. Rainbowduino), update the sequence on your device and run it standalone. One special feature is typing letters and numbers. Future versions aim to support multiple devices, different color depth and many more.
Some new free samples from Cyberworm: 156 drums, clicks, noised and rattles from Elektron Monomachine (wav format, 24 bit, 44100, stereo, 12 mb)
Also from Cyberworm: Ensoniq VFX/SD patches, 85 banks and 709 single patches for Ensoniq SD, VFX, VFX-SD. Only Ensoniq SD 100% compatible! In VFX or VFX-SD some patches might not work (or work incorrectly)!
Teenage Engineering has announced the OP-1 (Operator-1), a pocket size synthesizer and controller.
It’s a controller — OP-1 stands for Operator 1. The OP-1 is a pocket size controller for your favorite software sequencer. Connect it to your laptop and it lets you control your sequencers transport with the common play, stop, rec, forward and rewind. Use it to control your software synthesizers with the 4 rotary encoders and 16 dedicated quick keys for fast selections.
…and a Synthesizer — When you disconnect the OP-1 from your computer you suddenly have a stand-alone portable wonder-machine with 8 synthesizer models, 8 samplers and effects like Delay, Flutter, Filters and EQ all built in. Use all that synthesizer power to record your work with the truly unique (at present time, secret) sequencer. We promise you a really cool and creative way to record your sounds and tweak them in a completely new way.
A portable wonder! — Use the magic step sequencer/arpegiator to get the notes right. If that is not enough use the built in motionsensor that sense every shake or move you make and turn it into really cool sounds. Then relax and sample a beat from the built-in FM radio or memorize a tune by whistle it into the built-in microphone. Play your piece to your friends through the built-in speaker. Or…convert it right away to mp3 and mail it to them.
In case you think the OP-1 looks too good to be true, the developers have posted a nice video.
The OP-1 is still in development and should be ready in 10-12 months.
When the time is right we will sell 100 OP-1:s to those of you who are ready to beta-test the pre release product. Fill in the form to the right to be part of this exclusive beta-program. We are looking for all types of users from professional sound designers to ordinary users just interested in sound and synthesizers.