A Little Cheer – The Horrorist

A Little Cheer

I am working on my new album so I haven’t had much original music to play for you. Therefore, I decided to knock out a quick Merry Xmas song for you! Just one take using a Korg KR-55, Roland SH2 and Shure SM58. Enjoy!

“Christmas time is here.
It’s time for a little cheer.

All my friends are drug addicts.
All out of luck.
They wont make it through next year.
And no one really cares.

Brooklyn is a toilet.
Your’e swimming in.
No gifts for you this year.
Santa knows where you’ve been.

Christmas time is here.
It’s time for a little cheer.

New York City snow.
Snowing in your nose.
No brain left.
Dancing the night away.

This year was bad.
Next year will be worse
You’ve got nothing left.
You spoiled little loser.

Christmas time is here.
It’s time for a little cheer.

Christmas Eve you’re out.
at the same old boring club.
You’re ugly and your stupid
And everyone hates your guts.

Christmas day the dealers.
won’t come to your house.
Why don’t you just kill yourself?
Why don’t you just die?

Jingle Bells Jingle Bells Jingle all the way.
I hate you. You hate me. I hate you. You hate me.”

For more info: thehorrorist.com

Helix

Helix

Helix iOS

Helix App

There is a new iOS game I am in love with called Helix. It’s kind of like a mix between the a game on Magnavox Odyssey 2 called UFO and anything from Jeff Minter. Acid colors, awesome soundtrack and very good arcade play.

“It all makes for a wonderful arcade experience. The twist is rich enough that everything feels fresh, and there’s something almost painfully addictive about the game as well.” – pocketgamer.co.uk

For more info: itunes.apple.com/us/app/id562550427?mt=8

Working on the Site

repair

Wire to the Ear may look funny for a few days. With help from Tadpole I finally have upgraded the backend so the site will now load super fast. Unfortunately the old Theme was too old to work with the new version of WordPress. I will be making things look more spiffy in the next few days! In the meantime enjoy the new speed! Oh and for now I have to keep comments off but that will also be fixed soon. Did you know I have been writing here since September 2007?

“WordPress is a free and open source blogging tool and a content management system (CMS) based on PHP and MySQL. Features include a plugin architecture and a template system. WordPress was used by more than 22.0% of the top 10 million websites as of August 2013. WordPress is the most popular blogging system in use on the Web, at more than 60 million websites.” – Wikipedia

For more info: tadpole.cc

The Zero Theorem

One of the greatest directors and one of the best actors are together in a new movie I am looking forward to seeing. The Zero Theorem is directed by Terry Gilliam (Brasil, 12 Monkeys) and stars Christoph Waltz.

“A computer hacker’s goal to discover the reason for human existence continually finds his work interrupted thanks to the Management; this time, they send a teenager and lusty love interest to distract him.” – imdb.com

For more info: imdb.com/title/tt2333804

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

Melody Mill

Critter & Guitari is going Eurorack with the Melody Mill. Besides looking really cool (who doesn’t like those buttons!) it is a very useful 39HP. Read the quote below for a taste of what this can do. I am considering this one for sure. $360 USD.

“The Critter & Guitari Melody Mill is a note generation control module for Eurorack modular synthesizers. It contains a keyboard, CV outputs, CV clock input, built-in arpeggiators, a sequencer, and MIDI capabilities. Use the CV output to control oscillators. Connect your MIDI controller or computer into your modular setup using the MIDI input. Play notes, record and playback sequences and arpeggios on your favorite modules. Convert MIDI clock into CV pulses. Clock the arpeggiator with an LFO for strange melodies. ‘Hold’ notes for drones. Connect the built-in square wave oscillator directly to a filter or an amp.” – critterandguitari.com

For more info: critterandguitari.com/melody-mill

German Shepherds

Here is what I consider a secret gem called Love Me by the German Shepherds. This is from 1985.

“Formed in San Francisco in 1981 by Stephen Scheatzle and Mark Hutchinson (aka Sandy Stark), the German Shepherds released two singles, one LP, and a slew of songs on comp’s. They were not a studio project, although they played live only occasionally in the early to mid-80’s. Their first single is “I Adore You,” a forgotten minimal synth nugget with an unforgettable rhythm box pattern. Fittingly, this confessional dirge is backed with “Booty Jones,” a tribute to convicted child molester Kenneth Parnell, which features Hutchinson’s menacing and child-like vocal affectations that later appear on other great tunes, “THC,” “First Man To Give Birth,” etc. Scant information exists on the whereabouts of the band. Misleading biographies and omissions are a part of their legend. For instance, they once announced the arrest of a band member on “trumped up child molestation charges” and suicide in order to promote the forthcoming LP, “Music For Sick Queers” (ARM vol.3 #8, 1985). There is no evidence that any arrest or suicide ever happened, yet the LP did come out. What else would one expect from a band who took audio samples from Jonestown to mock-torture Steve from Subterranean Rec’s?” – Discogs

For more info: discogs.com/Legendary-German-Shepherds and sickqueers.com

Korg Little Bits

I grew up loving Lego. Now I’m really into modular synthesizers. Now Korg has released Little Bits. A little random module? A small speaker? The modules are held together by magnets? So fun.

“The new Synth Kit includes an assortment of 12 electronic Bits modules that instantly snap together with magnets to create circuits like those used in KORG’s famous analog synthesizers. Modules included in the Synth Kit are power, oscillator (x2), filter, envelope, delay, keyboard, micro sequencer, mix, split, random, and synth speaker.” – Korg

For more info: korgusa.com

via Matrixsynth

Paul Schreiber Interview

Like many other electronic musicians lately I have been obsessed with my Eurorack modular. A few modules I own really stand out. Three of my favorites are from a company called Synthesis Technology. Synth-tech as people call them is Paul T. Schreiber. If you look at his resume you will see he is an experienced audio engineer. You can hear his expertise in his modules. Enjoy a one hour Wire to the Ear interview with Paul as we discuss Chris Randall, MOTM, an $18,000 home stereo, the end of Blackberry, Tandy Radio Shack, the power of digital, patents and stealing designs, Eurorack power issues, the upcoming E370 Quad Morphing VCO/E371, E102 Digital CV Processor/Quad Temporal Shifter and what would Paul eat as his death row meal.

“So a lot of people grew up drooling in music stores. I drooled in the stereo store and I wanted to have this stereo system that cost $18,000. So I told my wife…” – Paul T Schreiber

For more info: synthtech.com facebook.com/ptschreiber, ctrl-mod.com/synthtech and analoguehaven.com/synthesistechnology

Happy Birthday Wire to the Ear 6 Years!

I am very happy today because Wire to the Ear has turned 6 years old! Over 1,145,010 unique visitors have come by and have had a read over the years. These days that’s about 40,000 per month. If you look back through the archives you can watch music technology shift hype from VST/AU plug-ins to iOS and now to Eurorack modular. I’ve used the blog to share music with you and from time to time told you personal stories. Most of the comments now take place on social networks but that’s fine by me (follow me other places with the links below). A lot of you send me music or links to your products to post here. If I didn’t do so just know it either didn’t fit with the blog or I was just too busy to get to everything (I apologize). Last week I went to a WordPress user group in NYC to find some people to hire to help speed the blog up and get it refreshed. The archive is quite huge so backing up, upgrading WP and changing the theme takes some effort. Thank you very much to everyone who stops by and reads whatever I happen to find interesting!

“wire to the skin wire to the eyes wire to the nose wire to the skull wire to the ear”

For more info: facebook.com/oliverchesler, instagram.com/thingstocome, twitter.com/thingstocome, flickr.com/photos/thingstocomerecords, youtube.com/user/ThingsToComeRecords and thehorrorist.com