2011 was electric. 2012 will be electrifying! Happy New Year!!!
“There are a variety of popular beliefs about the year 2012. These beliefs range from the spiritually transformative to the apocalyptic, and center upon various interpretations of the Mesoamerican Long Count calendar.” – Wikipedia
The Belgian electronic body music group Front 242 is one of my all time favorite bands. Anything before the album Tyranny for You was incredibly original and creative. Like many great bands that continue to make music there is a cut off where things changed. The early albums which focused on Jean-Luc De Meyer vocals and military aesthetics had me fully hooked. Anything after that time period I simply can’t listen to. The canon of “good stuff” they recorded is large so I’m really not complaining. In the late 80s I collected every piece of 242 music and memorabilia I could find. Back then there was no eBay so Manhattan record stores were the hunting ground. The most rare thing I own is a Front by Front DAT Cassette. Every few months I still check eBay to see what 242 stuff is there. Once I saw the arm bands then someone bought them and I never saw them for sale again. Some friends (Pet Duo) of mine went to see them live in Berlin last night so I decided to look around online for old 242 stuff. Amazingly I found a blog called Front 242 Collector that has great photos of the arm bands and all sorts of finds.
“this is without a doubt one of the most collectible and hardest to come by Front 242 items: the Front 242 armband! Back in the day, before Transmission 242 there was the 242 Propaganda Unit. This was one of the “Propaganda Supports.” You can see 242 sporting this armband on the Official Warfare Tour and in videos. The armband was offered for sale in the Propaganda Unit catalogue (I will post this someday as well). The cost for the 242 Armband was 50 BF in Belgium, 70 BF in Europe, and 100 BF in other countries (+ postage). Today, when they do come up for sale, expect to pay upwards of $200-$250 at times! The armband is made of leather with beautiful “242” stitching and attaches to the arm with velcro. The Propaganda Unit logo is stamped inside and I believe they were numbered? This example happens to be #63.” – target242
I use Ableton’s Autopan often. Mostly I use it when recording old analog synths that don’t have MIDI. I use it as a 1/8th or 1/16th note chopper to keep things in line. You can hear it at work on the bassline in my song Sex Machine (above). Of course there’s more the little Autopan can do as the Liveschool video points out. Here’s another tip… Audiodamage’s Panstation plug-in which is based on the Drawmer M500 gives you a different, more classic, wider effect than Autopan.
“Ableton Autopan device – multiple ways you can use it in your music.” – Ableton Liveschool
For Xmas my brother got me an Olloclip. It’s a clip on wide angle, fisheye and macro lens for the iPhone. The results are really great. Just look at that macro shot of an API 512c micpre knob!
“The API 512c remains faithful to the circuit designs of API’s founder, Saul Walker. Fully featured and still hand assembled, the 512c carefully preserves the original sound character that made it so much a part of the early days of recording. Offering high headroom and a wide variety of inputs and input access points, it is equally at home in the commercial recording studio as it is in the home project studio.” – apiaudio.com
Is Jay Greenburg the next Mozart? It doesn’t really matter it’s amazing how music flows from some in such a way. Jay mentions he can’t turn the music off in his head and hears multiple channels at a time. Let’s hope he doesn’t go insane.
“There is a composer studying at New York’s renowned Juilliard School who some say is the greatest talent to come along in 200 years…. “We are talking about a prodigy of the level of the greatest prodigies in history when it comes to composition,” says Sam Zyman, a composer. “I am talking about the likes of Mozart, and Mendelssohn, and Saint-Sans.” – 60 Minutes
WaveShaper is a new iPad app that lets you scrub samples. You can load your own and morph between sample locations. The description sounds a lot like the NI’s Skanner however the results are far less musical, more glitch. I really like using my own samples in iOS apps but connected to iTunes to transfer samples in isn’t elegant. $5.99 in the App Store.
“WaveShaper is an audio synthesis app that lets you control a unique sound generating algorithm using a large XY controller. Use two fingers to control four parameters in real-time. This app is full of surprises and will create sounds unlike any you might create in a typical sound design plugin!” – waveshaperapp.com
There are numerous Fireplace apps for iOS to keep you warm. However for the modern hipster Ted Martens has created an 8-bit Fireplace for Mac or PC. Commands include: log, match, marshmallow, smore, eat hotdog, fireworks, photo, paper and water
“Type words to interact with the Fireplace or just sit back and enjoy. The logs burn down to ashes in about 30 minutes each.” – tedmartens.com
Let’s get this Christmas weekend started in 1982. The PPG Wave is such a pretty blue Wavetable joy. Imagine finding one under your tree? Thanks to Retrosound for posting so many wonderful old synth videos!
“merry christmas and a happy 2012 ! all sounds: PPG wave 2.2 Synthesizer from the year 1982.recording: multi-track (internal sequencer/arpeggiator & software)” – Retrosound
Grid is a new device for Native Instruments Reaktor. It’s a 8×8 sequencer with 2 step sequencers, LFO, Filter, delay effects and random “Glitch” control. Unfortunately, it won’t work with Reaktor Player. About $30.
“Based on an 8×8 matrix sequencer and a unique sound concept, GRID makes a great addition to your musical toolkit.” – icebreaker-audio