I had a great time at the Control Voltage Fair at the South Street Seaport yesterday. It was good to see that there are now 4 stores in the NYC area selling modular synthesizers! I spent the most time with Karl Ekdahl and his new Polygamist synth. I own his Moisterizer spring reverb unit and the new synth is wonderful. It’s also one of the coolest looking pieces of hardware I’ve ever seen. Mark Verbos had his car size vintage Buchla system there and did an hour live performance (eat that Deadmau5!). A good time and I hope these type of events keep happening because you really need hands on time with the modules to decide which ones you want in your own rack. You can see the full set of photos if you: click here
“The analog modular synthesizer is a type of synthesizer consisting of separate specialized modules connected by wires (patch cords) to create a so-called patch. There are three basic kinds of modules: source, processor and logic. The basic modular functions are as: signal, control, logic/timing. Outputs are an electric voltage.” – Wikipedia
There is a modular synth show at the South Street Seaport (210 Front Street, New York) in NYC tomorrow today! It’s called the Control Voltage Faire and it runs from 3-8PM. If that’s not enough fun for you there is a Buchla Concert that follows from 8-10PM.
“Since most modular synthesizers are constructed at the cottage industry level and distributed online, it is difficult for users to interact with these instruments. Control Voltage Faire will be the first opportunity on the East Coast for amateur enthusiasts, professionals and the general public to experience analog synthesizer modules produced by DIY manufacturers and crafters. Like a small-scale NAMM show with the independent spirit of the Maker Faire, the Control Voltage Faire will zone in on the origins and future of modular synthesis. Presenters at the Control Voltage Faire include: Control, 4ms, Harvestman, Knas, Main Drag Modular, Make Noise, Malekko, SnazzyFX, MeMe Antenna and Pittsburgh Modular. And more to be announced! The evening will feature Buchla 200 Recital, presenting three composers exploring this powerful instrument: Alessandro Cortini, Carlos Giffoni, and Mark Verbos. To end the event, a late show featuring Xeno & Oaklander and Loud Objects will perform on all-analog instruments. The concert will take place in Lower Manhattan’s @SEAPORT!, located at 210 Front Street.” – facebook.com/events…
Engadget has coverage of Google’s I/O conference. Did you know that Google is showcasing a “Net-enabled social music device with a musical keyboard and a wide multi-touch display, and a variety of musical apps and cloud services.” called the Miselu Neiro? Retronyms, Korg and Yamaha are showing off software on the device. Check out the Polysix, a touch screen Theremin and more in the video above. It’s interesting but the iPad has such a huge lead in music apps this will have to be very inexpensive or get some exclusive content. I do like the idea!
“Yamaha is providing the upcoming “neiro” with the Yamaha AudioEngine (TM) Series Sound Chip NSX-1. This powerful synthesizer engine delivers a quality that almost matches the sound of real musical instruments. The DSP chip offers a larger variety of sound effects such as reverb, chorus and EQs that create a rich sound experience.” – miselu.com
I love storm sounds. In New York we get some massive thunder from time to time. I like to turn off any TV or music playing, sit by the window and listen to the rumble. Rain and wind sounds are great in music. I often use white noise to simulate wind. There are sample libraries of this stuff but if you want a proper VST which simulates rain or wind well now you an have one. Audiowind and Audiorain do just exactly that. There’s even the almighty awesome random button. The only caveat is the price: 149 Euro each launch price going up to 245 Euro or 399 Euro for both. Without a doubt for weather channels, commercial producing studios and filmakers it’s worth it. For a solo electronic musician looking for a storm maybe not.
“They are perfect tools for wind sound effect and rain sound effect.” – audiogaming.net
Would you pay $5.29 to download and own a DJ mix? That is an interesting question Beatport is starting to ask with Beatport Mixes. What if by doing so the label and artist would get money? What if the DJ who made the mix would also get some money? With takedowns on Soundcloud happening often and publishers going after ISPs everywhere this could be the eventual future anyway. DJ’s earn 10%, the record label 60% and publishers 30%. The tracks have to be on Beatport or the the mix does risk being taken down. Beatport doesn’t take a cut but of course they will make their money selling tracks. For more of the details and an interview with Beatport’s CTO head to a detailed DJ Techtools post: click here.
“We’ve got all the details and an exclusive interview with the Beatport CTO on the launch of a brand new service they call Mixes. Mixes allows DJs to upload and sell their mixes legitimately and legally, with Beatport handling all of the payment to labels and performance rights organizations.” – djtechtools.com
This is a great video of Depeche Mode and The Cure from 1986. Watch Martin Gore playing Strangelove on his Guitar before Music for the Masses was released. Alan Wilder & Martin loading the song Nothing into an ancient computer by floppy disk and much more. In my opinion this captures DM at their very best moment in history right before their greatest album was released. Many will argue this was The Cure’s greatest period too and watching them work out the song Just Like Heaven is well heavenly.
“These are the songs. The songs are on here (floppy disk).” – Martin Gore
Here’s Paris Hilton’s DJ premier. Just think… those sparkles on her dress are probably real diamonds. Random thoughts: “End of Days.” “Actually way more entertaining than some of the DJs I saw this weekend.” “Jesus WTF”.
“Paris Hilton World Premiere As A DJ.” – donskip.com
Of all the sample library makers I think UVI is one of the best. They have good taste and also wrap their sounds in a nice way. This time they do a take on the Fairlight called the Darklight IIx. I love these very Trevor Horn sounds so much. Think Art of Noise, late Yes, Yello, Herbie Hancock… I had a few of the type of sounds on my first sampler a Roland S-50. There have been a few recent sample libraries and an iOS app but I’m betting this one from UVI will be the most useful. It has 3 pages/screens. Page P is where you load and change the sound, Page B is a digital drum machine (yay) and Page U is a sequencer. $200 USD.
“UVI Darklight IIx is the latest UVI product, inspired by the most mythical Computer Music Instrument of the 80’s. We took our obsession to the next level, creating a complete set of instruments, sounds and sonic tools deeply inspired by the original digital monster. A unique, hybrid process of exhaustive multi-sampling, analysis, and advanced audio processing allowed us to not only capture the original character of this machine but to enhance its ability with a host of today’s most powerful analog modeled filters, LFOs, envelopes and effects–packaged beautifully in an old-school interface.” – UVI YouTube