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Indian E-music – The right mix of Indian Vibes… » MIDI


Here’s a free pack to get MIDI Polyphonic Expression under your fingertips

Delivered... Peter Kirn | Scene | Thu 21 Jan 2021 7:21 pm

MIDI Polyphonic Expression, once considered exotic, is now in favorite tools like Ableton Live 11, Xfer Serum, and Arturia Pigments. So where to get started? Our friends at Sensel just made a handy free preset pack.

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MIDI has a slick new brand identity, courtesy Pentagram, in time for 2.0

Delivered... Peter Kirn | Scene | Mon 18 Jan 2021 7:29 pm

"MIDI" the word has become almost part of culture at large. But with MIDI 2.0 arriving, the MIDI Association decided it needs a new look - and sound.

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Strum is a mesmerizing new take on arpeggiators and performance – Max for Live

Delivered... Peter Kirn | Scene | Mon 11 Jan 2021 11:07 pm

Able to roll through chords, make organic arpeggiations, and spin out hypnotic melodies, Strum looks like the most addictive Max for Live device in recent memory.

The post Strum is a mesmerizing new take on arpeggiators and performance – Max for Live appeared first on CDM Create Digital Music.

How MPE can work on hardware synths: a look at Sequential OB-6, Prophet 6 updates

Delivered... Peter Kirn | Scene | Fri 8 Jan 2021 8:22 pm

Chicken and egg problem, no more. MIDI Polyphonic Expression is now in commonly available controller hardware and software like Ableton Live 11. So let's check in at the synth maker of the father of MIDI - Dave Smith's house Sequential and see what happens when you add it to classic synthesizers.

The post How MPE can work on hardware synths: a look at Sequential OB-6, Prophet 6 updates appeared first on CDM Create Digital Music.

Your body is a resistor – so it’s an instrument, too – in Collin’s Lab

Delivered... Peter Kirn | Scene | Thu 8 Oct 2020 4:36 pm

Each part of your body - tongue, finger, arm - has its own electrical resistance. Our friend Collin Cunningham puts this to use, and then turns all of that into musical instrument controller.

The post Your body is a resistor – so it’s an instrument, too – in Collin’s Lab appeared first on CDM Create Digital Music.

Akai Force 3.0.5 is huge: new macros, MIDI multis, linear arrangement, Ableton import, more

Delivered... Peter Kirn | Scene | Tue 6 Oct 2020 6:32 pm

There’s nothing like a good, healthy rivalry. And Akai are back in a big way with Force 3.0.5, which transforms how their standalone hardware works as a hub for gear, arrangement tool, and hands-on creation device. 3.0.5 is a point-release firmware update, but the changes here aren’t just small tweaks or improvements. Think more like […]

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Start making sense: just use ‘in’ and ‘out’ for MIDI clock, if in doubt

Delivered... Peter Kirn | Scene | Tue 23 Jun 2020 5:24 pm

To agree on a change, it's helpful not just to agree on what you're removing, but also its replacement. So, here's an easy solution: in, out.

The post Start making sense: just use ‘in’ and ‘out’ for MIDI clock, if in doubt appeared first on CDM Create Digital Music.

Your guide to the 3 best new underground synths from NAMM – not a clone in sight

Delivered... Peter Kirn | Scene | Tue 21 Jan 2020 5:22 pm

Nothing new under the sun? Think again. Independent manufacturers are still creating novel designs for music making – and last week brought a lot of news.

Just as acoustic instruments often start with simple building blocks – blow on something, hit something, pluck something – these creations do work with existing known synth methods. (Think FM, wavetable, whatever.) But let’s dump the notion that “everything” is a clone now, just because one manufacturer starting with the letter B has been pulling its product news from a 1981 Roland product catalog.

In fact, there’s so much new stuff, it’s easy to get lost. So here’s your quick guide.

MEGAfm

The pitch: It’s a powerful synth with the heart of a SEGA. Imagine a hands-on, polyphonic instrument built around the same chip that powered the SEGA Megadrive and Genesis game consoles.

Who makes it: Indie French builder Twisted Electrons, who already has a great track record with handheld and desktop acid and chip music synths, plus a Eurorack modular collaboration with Crea8audio.

Specs in a nutshell: 12 voice polyphony (and various voicing modes), two of the YM2612FM chips already onboard, 8 algorithms, presets, tons and tons of controls, 3 LFOs, full MIDI I/O, and an arpeggiator and sequencer, all in an aluminum case.

How much, and when: 474EUR before VAT, apparently available now.

Buzz factor: This thing looks like a beast – an all-in-one, deep polyphonic chip music composition machine in a box, either with that onboard sequencer/arp or if you prefer using MIDI from the outside.

And oh yeah, prediction for 2020: the world will have a collective realization that we don’t always want to hear someone playing on a modular synth who sent over a four page rider and needs a three hour sound check, and chip music will come back. Nintendo Switch battles backstage, go!

Look/listen:

Learn more:

Erica Synths Bassline DB-01

The pitch: This is the bass from the luxury-priced Techno System, in a desktop box the rest of us can afford. So you get the distinctive Erica BBD delay-based detune on the oscillators, a swarming delicious sound, plus an aggressive Acidbox-derived filter, extras for modulation and dirt and noise, and an onboard sequencer.

Who makes it: Erica Synths, the Riga-based boutique superbrand who have turned ex-Soviet spaces and manufacturing into an assembly line for Latvian awesomeness – enough so that they hold their own festival every year. Look out, Ableton Loop.

Specs in a nutshell: DRIVE and DETUNE knob on the left. CUTOFF and RESONANCE on the right. There’s a reason the knobs are oversized for those. So it’s a transistor-based sub oscillator + overdrive + BBD-based detuned oscillators + noise source + syncable LFO + FM and VCF modulation + independent envelopes… well, you know that dessert menu item called “Chocolate Overload Deathwish”? This is what happens when that person specs out a bassline synth. Then add in CV + MIDI I/O, aluminum case, presets, and play either externally from analog or MIDI or with a simple onboard sequencer / arpeggiator.

How much, and when: Spring, 460 EUR.

Buzz factor: Sorry, 303. This thing is thicker / dirtier / nastier. I love the 303, but it’ll give you a daily fix of “wow, acid is my favorite thing ever,” before you get bored a few minutes later and switch it off. A DB-01, if you fall for it, will make you run away from home, assume a new identity, and live in a warehouse you squat in rural Latvia where you go feral and make nothing but experimental industrial music all day. Yes, Erica, you can quote me on that – if for no other reason than to warn the unwise.

Look/listen:

Sonicware LIVEN 8bit warps [Kickstarter]

The pitch: A lo-fi, grungy 8-bit synth with loads of voices plus onboard audio looping and lots of performance features (and warping) around the keyboard.

Who makes it: Sonicware, who created the portable ELZ_1 via Kickstarter – and which also shared a candy-bar keyboard design that recalls instruments from Casio and Teenage Engineering. It’s all the work of Yu Endo from Tokyo – part of a new generation of innovation in Tokyo’s synth scene.

Specs in a nutshell: Sequencer with chaining and real-time and step recordings and parameter locks per-step, sync and MIDI I/O, runs on batteries and has an internal speaker. Multiple synth engines (WARP, ATTACK, MORPH, FM) meet powerful envelopes and modulation and filtering, plus a bunch of FX (chorus, flanger, delay, hall, plate).

How much, and when: Well, delayed gratification as it’s Kickstarter, but estimated for June 2020. But amazingly, early bird starts at … EUR148.

Buzz factor: Come on, at this price, how can you say no to this 4-engine synth + looper + sequencer? One indie Japanese developer might just outdo the fun factor of a KORG volca for the same price, with a more flexible housing and more powerful features. Sure, a 16-bit engine might have made the different modes more varied, but – sounds like Yu-san has programmed this so you can exploit the 8-bit grime.

Look/listen:

Learn more

Save up your pennies?

Honestly, I think any of one these three tops the other product reveals from this month. Sure, the KORG Wavestate looks powerful, but … the freak factor of that new Twisted box might well outdo the KORG offerings. It promises to build on everything designer Alex from Twisted has been working toward over the years.

The DB-01 meanwhile might quietly be the most indispensable thing Erica have done yet – it’s got some of the best bits of the Techno System, but in a form factor you can both a) actually afford and b) carry with you in an airBaltic carry-on allowance. Now if Erica just does a TR-01 drum machine to go with it, I’m completely sold.

And Sonicware have nailed the amount where you’d impulse-buy yourself a Kickstarter present for June.

So, dear Santa Claus… uh, wait, it’s the end of January… dear Saint Patrick, are you listening?

And with each of these priced under 500 bucks, can we collectively admit that the idea that independent synths are expensive or everything has to be a clone is just objectively not true? Thanks.

The post Your guide to the 3 best new underground synths from NAMM – not a clone in sight appeared first on CDM Create Digital Music.

Return of full-sized KORG MS-20, as retro trend continues

Delivered... Peter Kirn | Scene | Tue 14 Jan 2020 3:56 pm

It’s badly upstaged by the ARP 2600, but for those who want it, KORG are again making full-sized MS-20 synths. That caps a long string of MS-20s from KORG.

The KORG MS-20 was one of the products that helped launch the current wave of big-name remakes. And KORG has done versions of the MS-20 every way imaginable. Let’s review just a few:

Nintendo DS game – KORG DS-10 (loosely based on the original)

iPad app – iMS-20 (plus KORG Gadget, too, if you want to be completionist)

MS-20 Legacy Collection plug-in, which briefly had available an external controller for the computer that supported patching:

A mini version – the MS-20 mini (hey, Japan does seem to appreciate things being small and – I’m totally with them on this, so like Japan and me)

The best of all of these, perhaps, is the full-sized MS-20 kit. I made one; and it’s brilliant – because of its reliability and flexibility, maybe even a little better than having the original around.

But the MS-20 kit was a limited edition. And so now we have the MS-20FS (for Full-Sized). It appears to be identical to the kit in every way – USB and MIDI, switchable filter, and even the original 1978 manual included in the box. But apart from the switchable filter and new I/O, it’s indistinguishable from the original – enough so that once it’s got some dust on it, these are regularly mistaken for the original.

The only news in the reissue is colors – four powder-coat options, in an attractive green, white, blue, and black.

No word yet on pricing, but this is coming this year.

White looks fresh. Note to self – idea for new stage persona, Colonel Sanders suit — new note to self, delete previous note.
Built like a tank, looks like a …
In blue, it’s obvious, but in black, these ports on the back are the only way to easily tell the FS isn’t an original MS-20.

That’s all fine and well, but am I alone in wishing for a new semi-modular, patchable thing from KORG? The MS-20 is great, but the more we live with it, the more I wonder what a new instrument catering to modern tastes might be.

Then again, I celebrated my birthday yesterday and I was also introduced in 1978 so — never mind. Things from 1978 are for more relevant than anything younger and cooler and all of you should really just throw money at us. Good, there, done. Oh wait – I should work on some color options for myself.

For more MS action – here’s a minisite dedicated to the MS-10 synth:

And sorry, 1978, but this NAMM is all about 1970, because of this:

The post Return of full-sized KORG MS-20, as retro trend continues appeared first on CDM Create Digital Music.

Roland has a new 88-key keyboard, and it means MIDI 2.0 has arrived

Delivered... Peter Kirn | Scene | Tue 7 Jan 2020 6:45 am

Roland has a new high-end keyboard with weighted action and lots of extras. The real news, though: this is the first MIDI 2.0 instrument from Roland.

Roland was part of the birth of MIDI 1.0, connecting their product in the first public demonstration with partner Sequential (and “father of MIDI” Dave Smith). So it’s fitting that they’ve got something with MIDI 2.0 support, even if the product itself might not be so radical.

As a piano controller, the new A-88MKII looks solid – and it’s a strong alternative to something like Native Instruments’ popular 88-keyboard, in that the Roland here isn’t locked to particular software and doesn’t require a computer to use. (Cough.)

Features:

  • USB-C connectivity
  • RGB-lit controls
  • PHA-4 keyboard action, fully weighted 88-keys (it isn’t just marketing speak – Roland do have a good record on response time, etc.)
  • Three zones for defining your own layers and splits
  • Arpeggiator onboard
  • Roland’s “famous pitch/mod lever” – yeah, it’s a Roland paddle, which you’ll love or hate
  • Full MIDI and USB compliance, so you can use this with anything, with or without a computer
  • Dedicated sustain, plus two additional control inputs (for expression or footswitches, as you define)
  • Chord memory
  • Pad triggers (assignable)
  • Assignable controls (also look handy with MIDI 2.0, and ideal for synthesists, for instance)
  • Wooden construction
MIDI 2.0 means easier automatic assignment between devices, and greater resolution, among other features.
Less future shock, more future proof? This is what we’d hope for in 2020: full backwards compatibility with 1983 MIDI, full forward compatibility with USB-C and MIDI 2.0, end result being compatibility with basically everything. We hope.

But really, this is the important part: the A-88MKII is “ready” for high-resolution control and all the extra features in MIDI 2.0. This should mean that you can take full advantage of the sensors, instead of mapping them only to 0-127 quantized values, and map more easily to software and hardware as MIDI 2.0 support rolls out. I really hope that includes full resolution for the key sensors, as that would make this worth the investment.

In the meantime, you can still use it with everything you’ve got now via that USB and MIDI support.

US$999.99 street, but will definitely be high on my list looking for an 88-key controller. Coming in March.

Obviously there are lots of questions here – even on something as similar as a piano controller – and there’s more to say about MIDI 2.0, so stay tuned. But while I hope MIDI 2.0 has some more far-out applications for its launch, it’s also good to see a bread and butter keyboard example there, too.

https://www.roland.com/global/products/a-88mk2/

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CHORDimist is an insane Max for Live chord-generating MIDI effect

Delivered... Peter Kirn | Scene | Fri 3 Jan 2020 7:11 pm

Chordmaker, arpeggiator on steroids, harmonic processor – CHORDimist is another of the powerful Max for Live tools for composition.

I figured yesterday’s blitz of Max for Live news would bring out something I missed. Chris Hahn pointed us to this one, by South Korean-based developer Leestrument.

It’s a chord generator, but it’s also really an advanced arpeggiator / MIDI harmonizer, with modes for firing off, sustaining, or arpeggiating harmonies. Add in lots of parameters for direction and variation – both of the chords themselves and how they’re played – and you have a sophisticated MIDI effect.

CHORDimist is US$49 and requires the latest Max for Live, meaning you want Live Suite 10.1 or greater (or an equivalent Max for Live license).

https://gumroad.com/l/chordimist

Ha, also – I love that the filename for the screenshot on Lee’s site is _E1_84_89_E1_85_B3_E1_84_8F_E1_85_B3_E1_84_85_E1_85_B5_E1_86_AB_E1_84_89_E1_85_A3_E1_86_BA_202019-10-02_20_E1_84_8B_E1_85_A9_E1_84_8C_E1_85_A5_E1_86_AB_204.13.04.png.

That’s… specific.

The post CHORDimist is an insane Max for Live chord-generating MIDI effect appeared first on CDM Create Digital Music.

HEXO for Live is an arpeggiator transformed into a polyphonic compositional tool

Delivered... Peter Kirn | Scene | Thu 2 Jan 2020 7:02 pm

Somehow, it started as an arpeggiator. But this Max for Live tool by K-Devices is now an advanced, polyphonic, polymetric tool for dreaming up rhythms and melodies.

We’ve got you set up for your new year’s food coma / hangover / days off / whatever, with a series of Max for Live tools to tinker around with into the winter (southern hemisphere summer) evenings of January.

HEXO is an important departure for K-Devices. If all you want is a tool that lets you generate rhythms and melodies parametrically or even randomly, HEXO does this – just like its predecessors.

But if you prefer to play live, HEXO can do that, too. In ARP mode, all its pattern generation is built live on incoming notes, meaning you can feed your own patterns or jam on a keyboard or other controller.

In RIFF mode, the tool is a polyphonic step sequencer. But that has a Thru function, too, meaning you can add notes live to the pattern.

Here’s a view of what that means – in ARP mode, you’ll see the pitch tracks are relative; in RIFF mode, they represent specific notes. It’s to me the best interface K-Devices has done yet – an intuitive brick grid giving you independent access to multiple tracks of notes with velocity, length, and probability controls always visible and editable.

https://k-devices.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/11/HEXO-modes-e1575300288682.png

Either way, HEXO is a great way of generating complex and even polymetric patterns. K-Devices keep topping themselves with each new creation, making advanced IDM-ish sequencer generators to spawn new ideas or elaborate live. This time, they’ve even added some unique instruments to play right inside the package.

But by the way, the K-Devices creations are ideal for sequencing software modulars – routing into tools like Reaktor Blocks or VCV Rack, you get some really beautiful sound generation facilities. It’s all working via MIDI, so any software, plug-in, or hardware will work.

Impressively, this works in both Live 9 and Live 10, so even if you’re putting off that Live upgrade, you can get to work.

Features:

Per-step probability, on-the-fly variations

Six tracks, 2-32 steps independently per track

4 snapshots with modulation

AutoSnaps with probability-driven variation

Each track has independent number of steps and time resolution for polyrhythms and polymeters

Global velocity, length scaling, and delay per track

Bend parameter (which lets you bend out of the Live grid)

Rule-based randomization of note, velocity, chance, and length

Included presets, Ableton clips, and two Simpler-based instruments (the “atmospheric” Pluck and “acid stab” Hyperism)

There’s an intro sale on now with steep discounts on everything they make – or 24EUR (regular 39EUR) for this instrument individually. Everything is here:

The post HEXO for Live is an arpeggiator transformed into a polyphonic compositional tool appeared first on CDM Create Digital Music.

Amazon’s AWS DeepComposer is peak not-not-knowing-what-AI-is-for

Delivered... Peter Kirn | Scene | Tue 3 Dec 2019 8:58 pm

AI can be cool. AI can be strange. AI can be promising, or frightening. Here’s AI at totally uncool and not frightening at all – bundled with a crappy MIDI keyboard, for … some … reason.

Okay, so TL:DR – Amazon published some kinda me-too algorithms for music generation that were what we’ve seen for years from Google, Sony, Microsoft, and hundreds of data scientists, bundled a crap MIDI keyboard for $99, and it’s the future! AI! I mean, it definitely doesn’t just sound like a 90s General MIDI keyboard with some bad MIDI patterns.” “The machine has the power of literally all of music composition ever. Now anyone can make musiER:Jfds;kjsfj l; jks

Oops, sorry, I might have briefly started banging my head against my computer keyboard. I’m back.

This is worth talking about because machine learning does have potential – and this neither represents that potential nor accurately represents what machine learning even is.

Game changer.

If at this point you’re unsure what AI is, how you should feel about it, or even if you should care – don’t worry, you’re seriously not alone. “AI” is now largely shorthand for “machine learning.” And that, in turn, now most often refers to a very specific set of techniques currently in vogue that can analyze data and generate predictions by deriving patterns from that data, and not by using rules. That’s a big deal in music, because traditionally both computer models and even paper models of theory have used rules more than they have a probability. You can think of AI in music as related to a dice role – a very, very well-informed, data-driven, weighted dice role – and less like a theory manual or a robotic composer or whatever people have in mind.

Wait a minute – that doesn’t sound like AI at all. Ah, yes. About that.

So, what I’ve just described counts as AI to data scientists, even though it isn’t really related very much to AI in science fiction and popular understanding. The problem is, clarifying that distinction is hard, whereas exploiting that misunderstanding is lucrative. Misrepresenting it makes the tech sound more advanced than arguably it really is, which could be useful if you’re in the business of selling that tech. Ruh-roh.

With that in mind, what Amazon just did is either very dangerous or – weirdly, actually, very useful, because it’s such total, obvious bulls*** that it hopefully makes clear to even laypeople that what they claim they’re doing isn’t what they’re demonstrating. So we get post-curtain-reveal Oz – here, in the form of Amazon AI chief Dr. Matt Wood, pulling off a bad clone of Steve Jobs (even black-and-denim, of course).

Dr. Matt Wood does really have a doctorate in bioinformatics, says LinkedIn. He knows his stuff. That makes this even more maddening.

Let’s imagine his original research, which was predicting protein structures. You know what most of us wouldn’t do? Presumably, we wouldn’t stand in front of a packed auditorium and pretend to understand protein structures, if we aren’t a microbiologist. And we certainly wouldn’t go on to claim predicting protein structures meant we could create life, and also, we’re God now.

But that is essentially what this is, with music – and it is exceedingly weird, from the moment Amazon’s VP of AI is introduced by… I want to say a voiceover by a cowboy?

Summary of his talk: AI can navigate moon rovers and fix teeth. So therefore, it should replace composers – right? (I can do long division in my head. Ergo, next I will try time travel.) We need a product, so give us a hundred bucks, and we’ll give you a developer kit that has a MIDI keyboard and that’s the future of music. We’ll also claim this is an industry first, because we bundled a MIDI keyboard.

At 7 minutes, 57 seconds, Dr. Wood murders Beethoven’s ghost, followed by at 8:30 by sort of bad machine learning example augmented with GarageBand visuals and some floating particles that I guess are the neural net “thinking”?

Then you get Jonathan Coulton (why, JoCo, why?) attempting to sing over something that sounds like a stuck-MIDI-note Band-in-a-Box that just crashed.

Even by AI tech demo standards, it’s this:

Deeper question: I’m not totally certain what has earned us in music the expectation from the rest of society that, not only is what we do already not worth paying for, but everyone should be able to do it, without expending any effort. I don’t have this expectation of neuroscience or basketball, for instance.

But this isn’t even about that. This doesn’t even hold up to student AI examples from three years ago.

It’s “the world’s first” because they give you a MIDI keyboard. But great news – we can beat them. The AWS DeepComposer isn’t shipping yet, so you can actually be the world’s first right now – just grab a USB cable, a MIDI keyboard, connect to one of a half-dozen tools that do the same thing, and you’re done. I’ll give you an extra five minutes to map the MIDI keys.

Or just skip the AI, plug in a MIDI keyboard, and let your cat walk over it.

Translating the specs then:

  1. A s***ty MIDI keyboard with some buttons on it, and no “AI.”
  2. Some machine learning software, with pre-trained generative models for “rock, pop, jazz, and classical.” (aka, and saying this as a white person with a musicology background, “white, white, black-but-white people version, really old white.”)
  3. “Share your creations by publishing your tracks to SoundCloud in just a few clicks from the AWS DeepComposer console.”*

Technically *1 has been available in some form since the mid-80s and *3 is true of any music software connected to the Internet, but … *2, AI! (Please, please say I’m wrong and there’s custom silicon in there for training. Something. Anything to make this make any sense at all.)

I would love to hear I’m wrong and there’s some specialized machine learning silicon embedded in the keyboard but… uh, guessing that’s a no.

Watch the trainwreck now, soon to join the annals of “terrible ideas in tech” history with Microsoft Bob and Google Glass:

https://aws.amazon.com/deepcomposer/

By the way, don’t forget that AWS is being actively targeted right now by the music community with a boycott. Maybe they were hoping for a Springtime for Hitler-style turn-around, like if this is bad enough, we’d love them again? Dunno.

Anyway, if you do want to try this “AI” stuff out – and it can really be interesting – here is a far more comprehensive and musically interesting set of tools from rival Google:

https://magenta.tensorflow.org

Now back to our regularly scheduled programming of anything but this.

AI: I am the button.

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You can learn a lot from Surgeon’s live rigs

Delivered... Peter Kirn | Scene | Tue 12 Nov 2019 3:04 pm

Our friends at Resident Advisor took a peek at the techno legend’s battle-tested live rigs. And it’s not so much about gear – it says a lot about musical technique.

First, it’s simple but irresistible – Surgeon’s live rig is devastatingly effective, thanks to some economical decision making and inarguable musicianship:

  • Octatrack – six drum sounds, some backing tracks
  • LEPLOOP – FM oscillators, noise, and then sequenced sample and hold and LFO, plus it filters and delays the Octatrack
  • Faderfox controller accesses Octatrack parameters without menu diving (the PC4 pot controller, though see also the new EC4 if you prefer encoders and display)
  • OTO Machines BOUM – compressor/warmer

Laboratorio Elettronico Popolare’s LEPLOOP is the unexpected star of this one – a unique sequencer – synth – drum machine. Surgeon does say that devices tend to come and go, but I’m glad RA caught him with the LEPLOOP in the mix – it’s really adding a lot of dynamism to his sets at the moment. (Well, and it’s nice when the lesser-known gear gets some love!)

It’s also interesting that he uses the BOUM as a kind of glue to keep things from jumping out in the mix.

“It does make you want to … jump around.” Hell, yes.

He also takes a look at the “abstract” live set. Actually, I think this is more idiosyncratic – meaning it’s harder to learn from how he works. So, sure, the inexpensive SH-01A from Roland makes loads of sense – it’s a melodic favorite of mine, and I think a more versatile instrument than the all-about-acid 303s everyone has talked about lately. (I’m sticking with its Juno sibling, myself, but the SH-01A is my other favorite Boutique.) And the LYRA-8 is simply dreamy – it’s the creation of the wonderful SOMA, who I’ve profiled.

Maybe the most telling part of this is the Electro-Harmonix looper, the 45000. Just as the techno set is all about controlled modulation, the spice of the LEPLOOP atop the foundation of the Octatrack, here the composition focuses on the looper’s structure. That allows spontaneous layering of new material, with the regular patterns from the Roland and Lyra building up a skeleton.

There’s a full feature interview on RA, and well worth a read – it’s a must if you’re a Surgeon fan, but full of sage advice even if your own music lies in another idiom.

The Art Of Production: Surgeon

The whole series from RA has been great, but I’d wager this one may be the most useful to other artists – and of course, I’m a sucker for anyone talking about how they actually play live.

For some longer-form discussion with Surgeon, he also gave a recorded 45-minute talk at Berlin landmark SchneidersLaden:

Oh yeah, and the set? It’s a couple of years old, but here’s a nice video from Glasgow:

The post You can learn a lot from Surgeon’s live rigs appeared first on CDM Create Digital Music.

This is the new MeeBlip thru5 kit, and it’s free with our geode synth for 48 hours

Delivered... Peter Kirn | Scene | Tue 22 Oct 2019 12:37 pm

We’ve got a new kit that’s indispensable for your gear. So hey, let’s celebrate Black Friday really early. Buy a MeeBlip synth, get a MIDI splitter kit for free.

The thru5 is a new MeeBlip kit. It’s a splitter (also known as a thru box), whatever messages are sent to the MIDI IN jack gets simultaneously passed through to all five MIDI OUT jacks. It’s perfect for routing clock in a jam session, for instance.

The board is mostly assembled; all you have to do is solder on the MIDI jacks and (for power) the USB port. That’s about as easy as electronics soldering gets, meaning the thru5 makes a good kit if you’re just getting started with soldering. For everyone else, you’ll put it together quickly and have a useful tool.

Our geode synthesizer is in stock right now, so we’re making this easy to buy both: order a geode, and get a thru5 free, while supplies last.

But hurry: the offer runs just through Wednesday October 23, 23:59 West Coast time.

Check out the MeeBlip thru5.

And get it free when you buy geode. Plus, we’ve got free standard shipping on now.

About MeeBlip geode

If you’re not already familiar with geode, here’s why you’ll want our hardware synth – and now you’ve got a great excuse to get one right now.

Q&A

Can I use the USB port to make this a USB MIDI interface?

No – USB is just for power on thru5. If you want a USB MIDI interface, check out cubit go.

Isn’t there already a MeeBlip thru box?

Yep, we also make the cubit splitter, which comes in a rugged case and features vertical-mount jacks, and doesn’t require soldering. We had a chance to make thru5 really affordable and easy as a kit, so we wanted to offer it to you.

Why is it already partly assembled? I want to do everything myself!

Hey, more power to you – but this is the most reliable, cost-effective way to offer up this particular kit, so we kept it simple.

Will you make more kits?

That depends on you – let us know if you like this, and what you’d want to see.

Get MeeBlip geode now, with free thru5 [expires 23:59 Wednesday October 22!]

Get MeeBlip thru5 kit (free with geode for 48 hours, $19.95 after that)

The post This is the new MeeBlip thru5 kit, and it’s free with our geode synth for 48 hours appeared first on CDM Create Digital Music.

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