Synthicide this Sunday in Brooklyn

Sports are for sissies! Forget the Super Bowl and commit Synthicide with me this Sunday. I (The Horrorist) will be DJing along with DJ Andi and DJ Stalagmike at the Bossa Nova Civic Club (1271 Myrtle Ave, Brooklyn, NY 11221). Andi and Mike have amazing music tastes and in Bushwick the drinks are definitely stronger. This is a happy hour event and it’s free!

“SYNTHICIDE returns for a second round of dancable synth-driven DJ sets! Happy hour in the heart of Bushwick! 7-10 PM. FREE. EBM | NEW BEAT | INDUSTRIAL | TECHNO | DARK SYNTH” – Synthicide

For more info: facebook.com/events/332304223574974

This entry was written by Oliver Chesler, posted on January 29, 2014 at 7:27 am, filed under DJ and tagged , , , , , , . Leave a comment or view the discussion at the permalink and follow any comments with the RSS feed for this post.



Peppermint Lounge

Since we are waiting to hear the Roland Aira to see if they will deliver a new TR-808 here’s a classic track featuring the king of drum machines. Perfect High from Peppermint Lounge has the elements of an early 80s new wave track I love. Sad lyrics, meloncholy arpeggiators, pads, stuttering samples, vocoder and a TR-808. Produced by Jörg Burckhardt and written by Matthias Elvers in Germany in 1983

“Because getting high was all he cared to do.” – Peppermint Lounge

For more info: discogs.com/Peppermint-Lounge-Perfect-High/release/779563

This entry was written by Oliver Chesler, posted on at 7:14 am, filed under music and tagged , , , , . Leave a comment or view the discussion at the permalink and follow any comments with the RSS feed for this post.



Wire to the Ear’s Winter NAMM 2014

So The NAMM Show 2014 is kicking off today. Usually I wait until the show is over then do a post about the stuff I like. However, this year I think I will keep this post up and just add to it as I find cool things I like. Refresh and re-vist this post if your interested to see my own thoughts on the new stuff!

HEXINVERTER.NET DRUM MODULES

HEXINVERTER.NET DRUM MODULES – About a year ago I contacted Stacy of Hexinverter.net. I wanted to know if I could buy his DIY HiHat Kit pre-built. At the time the answer was no. After some begging here we have not only the Hi Hats but a Kick Drum. Tiptop has the TR series nailed down (he used to repair those units I believe). Stacy is bringing some new flavors and just like synths we need variety in electronic drums. Very nice!

MOOG SUB 37

MOOG SUB 37 – Even though I am very much into my modular this Moog does look really great. Nothing in my studio has the bass of my Slim Phatty and I have a lot of equipment in there so there’s something to be said for the Moog sound. The SUB 37 really looks beautiful. I’m in love with my Microbrutes SH-101 like sequencer and the SUB 37 has one too. Even though it’s a simple little feature on a $1500 synth its the workflow that makes all the difference.

SSF ULTRA RANDOM

SSF ULTRA RANDOM – Sample and Hold is really important. I like old detuning oscillators. Using S&H and some other tricks I can make my new stable Eurorack oscillators sound bad. Bad meaning good. So I welcome the SSF Ultra Random!

IZOTOPE BREAKTWEAKER

IZOTOPE BREAKTWEAKER – They key to liking this is to think about using your own content in it. Once you do that you see there is some really cool stuff in this plug-in. The built-in sequencer allows you to use different tempos and time signatures for each channel. There is also a “generator” that gives you wavetable sequencing over parameters and MIDI control over everything. This looks to be another good remix tool.

ARTURIA BEATSTEP

ARTURIA BEATSTEP – An analog sequencer for a DAW, iOS and… Eurorack! No brainer awesome!

KORG GADGET

KORG GADGET – Nostalgia crack for musicians! No one can dispute you can use iOS for real music these days. I recently bought an iConnectMIDI2 just to do so. Here we have Korg making cool little retro inspired software gadgets on the most impressive gadget of all.

ELEKTRON RYTHM

ELEKTRON RYTHM – I know Elektron stuff is highly regarded but this is the first E box I want to own. I don’t think there is an analog drum machine I don’t want to own. I like how you can have parameter settings per sequencer move. It even has DIN Sync!

MAKE NOISE

MAKE NOISE – Six new modules! Rosie, Teleplexer, CTRLSEL-V, CTRLSEL-G, Mysteron and the Erbe-verb enter the amazing Make Noise world. The Teleplexer and Erbe-verb will surely end up in my studio.

More Wire the Ear picks coming as NAMM goes on over the next few days!

“The NAMM Show is the world’s largest trade-only event for the music products industry. It is held once a year, namely every January in Anaheim, California, USA at the Anaheim Convention Center, and is one of the two largest music product trade shows in the world. Its European counterpart is the Musik Messe in Frankfurt.” – Wikipedia

For more info: namm.org

This entry was written by Oliver Chesler, posted on January 23, 2014 at 8:09 am, filed under Uncategorized and tagged , , , . Leave a comment or view the discussion at the permalink and follow any comments with the RSS feed for this post.



Eurorack Haul

Here’s an unpretentious unboxing Eurorack video. I hope Billtrius posts a video each time he get a new module it will be fun to watch. I added a couple of other videos he has on his channel too.

“Heck yeah. It’s a mixer module.” – Billtrius

For more info: youtube.com/user/Vlogski/videos

This entry was written by Oliver Chesler, posted on January 22, 2014 at 8:10 am, filed under modular, synthesizer and tagged , . Leave a comment or view the discussion at the permalink and follow any comments with the RSS feed for this post.



WMD Sequential Switch Matrix

A matrix switch is a really important module. I watched a demo at length on matrix switch being used in the 5U format and really wanted one. To see the video I am talking about that got me inspired: click here. Thankfully WMD has released their Sequential Switch Matrix and it looks great!

“Our take on an essential module. Four inputs can be routed with individual buttons to four outputs. Those routing settings are stored in an array of matrices that can be sequenced or controlled with CV. Preset routing, feedback loops, chop sequences, trigger blasts (with expander), four-bit-wavetable-synthesis, and dramatic controllable mayhem are all possible.” – wmdevices.com

For more info: wmdevices.com/ssm

This entry was written by Oliver Chesler, posted on January 18, 2014 at 9:58 am, filed under modular, synthesizer and tagged , , , . Leave a comment or view the discussion at the permalink and follow any comments with the RSS feed for this post.



KOMA Elektronik Event at Control

Yesterday after work I went to the KOMA Elektronik Event at Control. For those who don’t know Control is at Eurorack modular synthesizer store in Williamsburg, Brooklyn owned by Daren Ho and Jonas Asher. KOMA Elektronik make modules and advanced pedals. They are Dutch and Austrian and the company is based in Berlin. I was pretty tired from working all day but really enjoy the get togethers at the store so I forced myself over there. After a large coffee, a couple of beers and some synth tweaking the conversation and fun started. KOMA didn’t have any new modules to show but they said they do have some in the works. Control is starting to get a lot of cool used stuff and I spent a few minutes checking out a weird vintage mixer with a built in drum machine. I also played with the Volcas for the first time and discovered they are really nice in person. I couldn’t resist buying something so I picked up an Intellijel Planar. I mean it’s a joystick so I have to one. After exploring some modules there are three I now have to add to my must have list: Modcan Quad LFO, Qu-Bit Electronix Nebulae and an Intellijel Rubicon. I really enjoy watching other people patch and create music on the large systems. I always get some ideas and also realize there are things I can do that I didn’t know I could. Nullsleep (Jeremiah Johnson) and others created some interesting loops worth watching. Be sure to come out to one of these events if you can it’s a lot of fun if you’re into synths! To see the full set of photos: click here

“On January 16th 2014 KOMA Elektronik will come to the Big Apple to host an event together with our buddies from Control Synthesizers and Electronic Devices! From 6PM till 8PM we will be at Control to answer all your questions that you might have about our machines, special techniques and upcoming designs. We will show our new machines and will have a few drinks to start the new year in a great fashion.” – koma-elektronik.com

For more info: koma-elektronik.com and ctrl-mod.com

This entry was written by Oliver Chesler, posted on January 17, 2014 at 6:29 am, filed under modular, synthesizer and tagged , , , , , . Leave a comment or view the discussion at the permalink and follow any comments with the RSS feed for this post.



Valhalla DSP Z-DSP

Reverb is coming to the Eurorack space in a big way (pun intended). There has “always” been the Doepfer A-199 Spring Reverb and you can now build the Music Thing Spring Reverb. Audio Damage and Make Noise both have reverb modules coming out. The video above is a demo of the also soon to be released Valhalla DSP reverb cartridge called The Halls of Valhalla for Tip Top Audio’s Z-DSP module. Sean Costello creates the Valhalla reverbs is known to be a real reverb genius. I like old Lexicon 80s reverbs and use his Valhalla Vintageverb often.

“A demonstration of the upcoming Halls of Valhalla reverb cartridge for the Tiptop Audio Z-DSP. This cartridge has 8 high quality modulated reverb algorithms, ranging from short (Room, Chamber) to medium sized (Plate, EnsembleVerb), to big (Cathedral), to unbelievably huge (Niflheim, Asgard, Ginnungagap).” – ValhallaDSP

For more info: valhalladsp.com and tiptopaudio.com

This entry was written by Oliver Chesler, posted on January 16, 2014 at 6:34 am, filed under modular, synthesizer. Leave a comment or view the discussion at the permalink and follow any comments with the RSS feed for this post.



Ultraloop

A few months ago I purchased the full version of Native Instruments Reaktor solely to use Twisted Tools amazing S-Layer plug-in. They have just released a new plug-in called Ultraloop and it’s also extremely tasty. Imagine a polyphonic loop sequencer matched with Effectrix and you start to get the idea. To jump right in and see why I am excited about this one start watching the video above at 1:50. I think the real key to Ultraloop is to use your own song material in the plug-in. For breakdowns or remixes this will be quite fun. Ultraloop requires the full version of Reaktor and is $69 USD.

“ULTRALOOP is a first-of-its-kind loop remixing sampler with a fast and intuitive visual workflow for Native Instruments *Reaktor. ULTRALOOP combines advanced loop layering, comping, effect processing and automation techniques to generate new grooves, riffs and song ideas. You can use ULTRALOOP with the included factory sample library or to remix your own samples, injecting new life into any existing loop library.” – twistedtools.com

For more info: twistedtools.com/shop/reaktor/ultraloop

This entry was written by Oliver Chesler, posted on at 5:45 am, filed under plug-ins and tagged , , , , , . Leave a comment or view the discussion at the permalink and follow any comments with the RSS feed for this post.



Roland Aira

So Roland is teasing something new for NAMM. It looks like a new drum machine and they have a promo talking about the origin of the TR-808. If the new AIRA is analog I’ll be excited. It also looks like this is one of eight products in an AIRA line. Will this be a return to the classic Roland we love? These machines will have to have the punch and tightness of the originals not just less than imitations.

UPDATE: Analogue Ryhthm Machine, 6 Analog and 4PCM-based Drumparts, Loop- and Step-Sequencer, Stutter-, Active Step and Step Jump-Functions, Multitouch Trigger Pad / Step-Button, LED-Display, Build-in Speaker, Sync I/O 1/8″ Mini-Input female Mono, MIDI In, Headphone-Out 1/8″ Mini-TRS Stereo, Power via 6x AA Battery or optional Power Supply (KA-350; not included), Dimention: 193 x 115 x 45 mm (WxHxD), Weight: 372 698 Euros”.

UDATE 2: People are pointing out the specs above are from a Thomman image which is probably a hoax. We will see!

“Roland Engineers discuss the initial concept of the TR-808 which was conceived and built in 1980. Although it was designed to create “backing tracks”, creative musicians started to use the Rhythm Machine as an instrument and music changed forever. Now the evolution begins again.” – roland.co.uk

For more info: http://www.roland.co.uk/aira

This entry was written by Oliver Chesler, posted on January 15, 2014 at 6:29 am, filed under drum machine and tagged , , . Leave a comment or view the discussion at the permalink and follow any comments with the RSS feed for this post.



Electronic Musician Modular

I used to get both Keyboard and Electronic Musician magazines in the mail each month. My iPad and the internet has replaced those days but I am glad to see the mags still live on. Electronic Musician has just started releasing Modsquad a YouTube series with Gino Robair and Jim Aikin about modulars. I really like these and there’s no better video online that shows off the Metasonix R54. Enjoy!

“Electronic Musician magazine is the ultimate resource for musicians who want to make better music, in the studio or onstage. Visit our website for artist features, gear reviews, and more tutorials!” – emusician.com

For more info: youtube.com/user/MyElectronicMusician/videos

This entry was written by Oliver Chesler, posted on at 5:42 am, filed under modular, synthesizer and tagged , , , , , , , , , . Leave a comment or view the discussion at the permalink and follow any comments with the RSS feed for this post.



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