I use Melodyne often on my own vocals. Sometimes I use it to correct pitch and other times for creative strange things. On my song I Stand with You (link) I sent my vocal to my friend Gabri Negro in Italy and he created a few harmonies of my own voice using Melodyne on specific words. He’s a classically trained musician and knew exactly where on the scale to place my “other” self. In the video above you can see Melodyne’s Random Deviation function which speeds up creating variations of original material.
“Simply copy the vocal track, insert slight deviations in pitch and timing, and place the tracks in the stereo image. And with the clever functions of Melodyne, you don’t have to move every note by hand.” – celemony
For more info: celemony.com
I really liked Arturia’s Minibrute a lot. I think it has a unique character. The new Microbrute is even more compelling. It’s smaller so it will fit on my desk and easier to take around. It has an interesting Mod Matrix that allows some Eurorack connection goodness. It has a cool sequencer that’s syncable with my Eurorack stuff. The price is great: $300.
“Packed with mixable waveforms, a new sub oscillator design, the famous Steiner-Parker multimode filter, super fast envelope, syncable LFO and the new step sequencer, not to mention the patchable mod matrix the MicroBrute is a landmark new synth at an incredible price.” – Arturia.com
For more info: arturia.com/evolution/en/products/microbrute
I’ve been diving deeper and deeper into my modular learning how to use the modules with each other. Daren from Control helped me with the patch above. With this patch I have an 8 step sequencer with two rows running. The first row is controlling the pitch of an oscillator and the second a filter cut off and resonance. You will need to use some multiples or Tiptop stackables to make this work. Holding a touch key on the Pressure Points holds the sequences on that step. Adjusting the ADSR’s release really effects the sound. Try adding a sine wave LFO into the ADSR’s Sustain CV control (if your ADSR has one) for some random spikes in the filter opening. Instead of clocking the Pressure Points with a straight clock use something like a uStep and send a few steps a break and then a few more steps for interesting patterns. Lastly try a VCA on the third Pressure Points row for volume control of each step. Enjoy!
“Pressure Points is a controller module, an analog sequencer that is played by hand. Touching the gold plated copper wires (aka Touch Plates), you become part of the circuit, generating a gate signal (Gate OUT), a control signal proportional to the amount of pressure applied (Press OUT) and the 3 Tuned Voltages for the activated Stage.” – Make Noise
For more info: makenoisemusic.com/pressurepoints
About six months ago I was asked to take part in a then secret music project. Tom J Carpenter and Jason Subtractive of Analogue Solutions were planning an ambitious string of Synthpop/New Wave releases. They were going to work with different vocalists, create music videos and promised a high quality package. I knew Jason’s synth work from his synth demos so I didn’t hesitate in saying yes. To say he has the Depeche Mode sound down is an understatement. On the song I gave my voice to titled The Last Martian listen to filtering bassline, high pitched delaying notes and at 43 seconds in there is a panning mid range sound that I’ve only heard Alan Wilder himself create. I knew that Tom was friends with Alan helping him repair some synths and selling him a Telemark. In fact, I question if Jason is actually who he says he is. This was also the first time I recorded my own vocal to someone else’s lyrics. Vile Electrodes and Chad Glenn also remixed the track. Here he comes with his gun the last martian.
“Sound of Science is pleased to announce the availability of our 2nd EP, “The Last Martian”, featuring THE HORRORIST (Oliver Chesler). Included are remixes by Vile Electrodes, Chad Glenn (The Coil), and SOS!” – Sound of Science
Buy now: iTunes or CD Baby
Want to hear a choir singing Depeche Mode’s Enjoy the Silence? Head over to composer Eric Whitacre’s genero.tv page to hear it (link). I really like it. He is asking for money to create a music video for the song.
Eric Whitacre, one of the most popular and performed composers of our time, wants you to make the official music video for Enjoy The Silence, from his new EP album. Eric Whitacre is one of the most popular and performed composers of our time, a distinguished conductor, broadcaster and public speaker. His first album as both composer and conductor on Decca/Universal, Light & Gold, won a Grammy® in 2012, reaped unanimous five star reviews and became the no. 1 classical album in the US and UK charts within a week of release. His second album, Water Night, was released on Decca in April 2012 and debuted at no. 1 in the iTunes and Billboard classical chart on the day of release. It features seven world premiere recordings and includes performances from his professional choir, the Eric Whitacre Singers, the London Symphony Orchestra, Julian Lloyd Webber and Hila Plitmann. His compositions also feature on multiple other recordings made in Europe, North America and Australasia.” – genero.tv/ericwhitacre
For more info: genero.tv/ericwhitacre
The year is 1989 and somewhere in a recording studio in France (maybe Belgium) someone created a band called Dow Jones and the song Just A Techno Groove.
“Feed your cat” – Dow Jones
For more info: discogs.com/Dow-Jones-Just-A-Techno-Groove/release/195659
I used to perform in Montreal, Canada quite often. I think it’s the only city in North America that hosts electronic events that give you that party feel you get in Europe. I’ve performed at some of the best spots in Montreal including the Canadian CBGB’s aka Foufounes Électriques and the now huge EBM event the Kinetik Festival. Since it has been a few years I wanted to make the most of the weekend so I decided to do a DJ Set on Thursday, a live show Friday and go to an official afterparty on Saturday. The DJ set was a last minute surprise announcement at a club called Bar Passeport. I was glad to see people there and after I fit my S4 and laptop in a super tiny booth I played a techno EBM set full of Gesaffelstein, TTC remixes and 80s EBM. I will post that set later tonight or tomorrow. I met some proper TTC fans, Maurice Roy the official Horrorist graphic designer and some friends from NYC. The live show the next night was at Le Belmont. During soundcheck I noticed it was a pretty nice/classy venue and it could also hold more than just a few people. When I returned around midnight I was pleased to see the place quite full of freaks. The stage was large and had a full size video wall behind me. I love when promoters get things right. With space to move and scream I had a blast performing. Even with all the stage space I jumped into the crowd a few times. When I wear my helmet people think it’s fun to hit me in the head and Montreal was no different. One guy almost knocked me out. In Montreal nightclubs and bars close early. This weekend that was a good thing because I “had” to attend the official/planned afterparty. After dropping my equipment off and changing out of some very sweaty clothes I found myself in a place I called the “Hippie House”. There was an episode of Mad Men where Don Draper goes to LA and finds himself way out of his element. The Hippie House was that kind of place for me because well it was run by authentic hippies. I met some very deranged non-hippie like people in there too. So just like a PG movie I now close the door on this story and let your imagination do the rest. I had a great time and somehow I feel it won’t be so long before I return to Montreal again. To see the full set of photos: click here
“F.U.B.A.R. Prods en collaboration avec Deadna Prod. présentent: The Horrorist live! Après 5 ans d’absence le conteur, Oliver Chesler, est de retour à Montréal. Le spectacle est appuyé par nos talents locaux.” – facebook.com/events/610785738953351″>FUBAR
For more info: facebook.com/events/610785738953351
This week Ableton featured some new Max For Live Devices. One of them named RokVid by Adam Rokhsar I really like a lot. If you have seen my live show lately the show starts with analog video glitching created by a Gieskes HSS3i. I’ve been looking for new ways to easily sequence more video and at $24 RokVid is already getting some use.
“Drag in a folder of movies, adjust a few controls, and your video begins to take on a life all its own. RokVid puts engaging video content on autopilot so that you can focus on your live performance. Many parameters can be modulated by aspects of your music. For example, use bass frequencies to warp your video or use volume to crossfade between video sources. You can also automate all modulation destinations using standard LFO waveforms. RockVid easily interfaces with an external or built-in camera. You can then crossfade between your playback movie and a live feed.” – Ableton.com
For more info: ableton.com/en/packs/rokvid
So you don’t own a modular but you want to play with one? Check out a web based modular called TrueGrid. Pretty cool huh?
EDIT: Some people let me know this only works in Google Chrome.
“TrueGrid is a fully functional modular web synthesizer which let’s you create, listen and share modular synth patches.” – modulargrid.net
Play now: modulargrid.net/racks/synth
Arturia has released iSEM for iPad. I only really post things if they seem interesting to me and well another iPad synth? Yes it’s based on the SEM but I have a Telemark and my modular so what gives? You see this iSEM has a nice killer feature! Watch the tutorial video above at about 3:25 in concerning the Voice Programmer. Here you can have the iSEM rotate each key press through 4 different voices. This is excellent as you can then set up each voice with a different filter setting or slight pitch variation. Setting up the voices like that gives you a really nice vintage sound. I also like that they implemented different keyboard scales. $9.99 available now.
“Set your key and choose from 26 scales, including Major, Minor, Pentatonic, Lydian and more. Inspired by the multitimbrality of the Oberheim two, four and eight Voice, the 8 Voice Programmer is a powerful module which lets you edit the parameters of 7 additional voices. Voice Programmer makes programming a breeze thanks to its visual layout. Select one of six directions for voice selection with modes including FWD, BWD, FWD-BWD and RANDOM. Whether you want to play spectral pads or complex sequences, this module will allow you to reach amazing sonic results.” – Arturia
For more info: arturia.com/evolution/en/products/iSem