If you are in the New York area please come and see me talk at Tekserve this Friday, May 4 from 4:00PM – 5:00PM. I will be doing a presentation as part of their Creative Friday’s series. I’m going to give you 10 absolutely killer tips to make your music and music career better. You will see/hear some DAW tricks, analog hardware ideas, inspiration tips, promotion tips and more. If you don’t know Tekserve is a legendary Apple Store in Chelsea. It’s a really fun place to visit and shop. Please come I would love to meet you in person! Tekserve is located at 119 West 23rd Street, New York NY 10011.
“Join us at Tekserve at 4 p.m. on Fridays for special art exhibitions, musical performances, video screenings, readings, and more – all by artists from the New York City community. Each showing will feature an interview and demonstration of the creative process, so you can learn about the digital tools artists are using to make the art of today.” – Tekserve
Earlier this year I did a remix for German artist Tomas Tulpe. He’s an interesting person and I am pleased my remix of Ich Tanz auf Dich appears on his brand new album Hatschi! (scroll the audio player down to get to an audio clip). You can read a very thorough review of the release at Reflections of Darkness (link). I hope to meet Thomas in person during my upcoming Berlin week.
“…The final of the album is the HORRORIST remix of ‘Ich tanz auf dich’. This version of the song is faster, alienated and put into a technoid electronic format perfectly fitting to the dance halls. This one surely will become a collector’s item, not many will love it, but if you do, then you’ll love it a lot! And so, one of the trashiest albums ever found the way into my ears was ending. My reactions reached from rhapsodic excitement to tired yawning and moaning while listening to ‘Hatschi!’ over and over again. Except of ‘Ich bin ein Grufi’ all songs could be heard through internet here and there already. ‘Ich tanz auf dich’ and ‘Disco’ will be stuck in the ears of the people who ever heard it forever. My conclusion: Buy the album if you like experimenting. It is worth it! But don’t be miffed if it does not flow from beginning to the and. And first of all, don’t take this album serious!” – reflectionsofdarkness.com
For quite some time I’ve been wanting to add a hardware effects unit to my live show exclusively for vocals. While Ableton is an incredible live tool I don’t want to be fiddling with pixels while I sing (scream). Although I could have a dedicated MIDI controller set up just for my vocal effects I don’t want to complicate my set up further as I already have a controller for synth/drum parts and Ableton is running a HD video in sync with the live show. I’m a huge fan of TC-Helicon. If your a reader of the blog you know Voicemodler for Powercore was my favorite plug-in and I recently picked up a Voiceworks Plus in my studio. I had my eye on Helicon’s live voice boxes for a bit but honestly they seemed a little pricey and complicated or too large. I am at my very limit as far as suitcase weight goes. I overlooked a January Namm announcement they made for a box they are now selling called the Voicelive Play. What I really like about this box is that I can set up presets, name them and click through them easily as my show and songs progress through a live set. The great feature that made be buy the unit is the HIT button. Basically it’s a second layer of effect(s) that you turn on for say a chorus or break. Watch the smartly produced aka easy to watch and learn from online manual above to get into everything this $250 box can do. If your a Sound on Sound subscriber you can read their review of the Voicelive Play here: link. See you at the show!
“Whether you’re at the top of the charts – or just a dreamer with a microphone, VoiceLive Play gives you hundreds of song & artist presets to choose from, helping you create amazing vocals. Featuring automatic backing harmonies, vocal double tracking, pristine EQ and compression, lush reverbs, hard-tuned robo-voice – all the the goose-bumps-on-your-arm effects that make today’s Billboard hit vocals “pop”. If hundreds of presets wasn’t enough, you’ll be able to download new and exciting artist presets each month for free via VoiceSupport.” – tc-helicon.com
Here’s something for the obsessive record collector to do with his free time: catalog your vinyl on Discogs. I would really like to do it too but as time accelerates I don’t want any of the past to steal from the future. Maybe I can get someone to do it for me? I never knew you could export your collection as a .XLS file… good stuff.
“Learn how to quickly catalog, appraise, and sell your records online using a free site called Discogs.” – Cnet
One of the first and great Electronic Body Music compilations was Welcome to the Technodrome (1989). I loved the track on it called Aimless by Typis Belgis. By the wonders of the internet I discovered another song by the band called Dark Horse. Discogs has an album listed called Deodorant Voor De Derde Oksel which was released on cassette. If anyone has it I would love to hear it!
“Typis Belgis began in the late 80′s as a dark underground electronic bodytobodymusic-project between Hans P1. , Rik S’ex. and Thierry V6. . After making several compilations and numerous gigs they are considert as being one of the founders for what’s later been called New Beat and other styles of electronic music. After they split up, rumors of a possible comeback were never been confirmed.” – padas2
AfroDJMac has released his latest Ableton Live pack (link). This time it’s for the Roland Juno 106. An old friend of mine Jay Serken let me use his 106 in my studio for years. It was eventually stolen. I used save a row of patches each just slightly different than each other. Next I would have Cubase (then on an Atari ST) send patch changes every to the Juno every 16th note. This would emulate an analog sequencer changing CV filter. You can hear the 106 going though various guitar pedals and my Electrocomp-101 on most of my early records.
“Ableton Live Pack of 22 instruments created with the Roland Juno 106 Polyphonic Analog Synthesizer. Each instrument was sampled from a custom patch on the Juno 106 and contains 8 macro knobs with its own unique effects to further twist and manipulate this diverse collection of sounds.” – afrodjmac.spinshop.com
Another absolutely legendary store is closing down in NYC. I’ve been to Bleeker Bobs countless times. A good chunk of my record collection comes from Bobs. I supposed it’s inevitable but the news saddens me. After my parents divorce my mother had a new boyfriend (now her husband Doug). To get my brother and I out of their hair on the weekends they would give us $100 to go record shopping. There were about 10 stores on our village walk including St. Marks Sounds, Vinylmania, Discorama, Rebel Rebel, Tower, Second Coming and Bleeker Bobs. As the 80s ended and I went to college, EBM/Industrial records started to dry up and I started making my own music. These factors ended my vinyl shopping spree. I think fondly of spending time with my brother and finding the music gems which I still cherish today. Be sure to read the article in The Stool Pigeon (link) for Bob’s history.
“Landmark Greenwich Village record shop Bleecker Bob’s is closing down after more than 40 years in business, and the only person in new york who doesn’t know is Bleecker Bob… A long CD rack, installed in the nineties, runs down one side of the store. It looks out of place now, like an arcade game in a library. Art deco clocks hang at the top of the walls in rows. Many of them have stopped. And there are crates and crates and crates of hand-labelled, meticulously catalogued records. But forget about the records for a minute….” – The Stool Pigeon
Look at the map above. That pin far away from everything is Novosibirsk, Russia. It’s Siberia and it’s where Mark Hawkins started a mini tour. He also shot the above 20 minute film. His footage shows Siberia as industrial, cold and alcohol fueled. Basically just what I think of when I think of Siberia. It’s amazing Mark performed there. My eyes were glued to this video. I’m not sure I could handle a tour like that. I froze my ass off just watching this.
“Techno artist Mark Hawkins’ tour of Siberia, Russia including dates in Novosibirsk and Krasnoyarsk, a visit to a school in the remote town of Nazarovo and an 11 hour nighttime journey on the Trans Siberian Railway.”
Look at this beautiful iPad granular sampler called Borderlands from Chris Carlson. I can see many of these futuristic interface elements influencing other pro-audio app developers. We live in a great time being able to touch our sounds like this. I can’t wait for this to be released.
“The audio files can be moved and resized using typical single and double finger gestures. Currently the orientation of each rectangle may be toggled by touching the object with a third finger. A grain cloud can be created by double tapping anywhere on the interface. This immediately opens the cloud for editing, exposing a number of parameter regions around the cloud. Each region can be dragged or thrown between a hard coded min and max value. Users may edit the number of voices in the cloud, duration of each voice, overlap of the voices, playback rate or “pitch” of the voices, and the frequency of an LFO controlling the pitch of each voice. This view may be hidden by double tapping on the grain cloud again. Several discrete parameters are available as buttons at the bottom of the interface. These include the grain direction (random/forward/backward), the window type (hanning, exponential decay, exponential growth, sinc), and the stereo distribution of the grains (two modes – unity preserves the original spatialization of the audio file, stereo pans grain voices left and right sequentially.” – Chris Carlson