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Sonoio – NON

On December 8th, through the Sonoio facebook page, Alessandro Cortini announced that he was working on an Xmas present for everyone and how did he come through! Today, Sonoio released ‘NON’, an album of reinterpretations by a list of artists I’m proud to be a part of. The album is free with the option for a hi-definition upgrade and comes with custom art for every track composed by Caspar Newbolt of Version Industries. This gift might come from Alessandro but I’m hi-jacking it and slapping my name on it – eat it.

Big Black Delta
Turk Dietrich
Tremblexy
Implex Grace
Mat Mitchell
Surachai
Richard Devine
Ladytron
Christopher Bissonnette

In other Sonoio news, a second batch of SuONOIO’s are available for pre-order at Sonoio.org but like the first run, they’re selling fast and will be out of stock in no time! Here’s a NSFW review of the SuONOIO we did a couple months back. Shirts, CD’s and posters are also in stock and like the SuONOIO, moving quick.

SONOIO.ORG
SONOIO Facebook

Plague Diagram – The Facts

A few requests for interviews and random questions have been asked and in an attempt to provide some insight on the process and release of Plague Diagram, this page will serve as a information to, hopefully, clear everything up. If you have questions please leave them in the comments.

Plague Diagram will be released on both digital formats and vinyl in early-mid December. The downloads will be a choice between a free mp3 version or a $3 hi-definition upgrade that includes source audio as well as other hi-fi options. The vinyl will be presented on transparent , high quality 180 gram disc. Thick enough to decapitate the closest thing next to you. It’ll cost $17, comes with beautiful full-sized artwork by Bridget Driessen, a sticker, personal thank you notes and hopefully, posters.

After mixing the album I took advice from friends and decided to outsource the mastering for the digital release. I thought about my choices and decided to use someone that works with high quality products on a daily basis, James Cigler. James explains his mastering process:

I used the UAD Manley Massive Passive plug-in to bring out some of the high end detail of the electronic sounds on the tracks; they sounded really great, but at times could be overpowered by the guitars. I also used it on some tracks to dip down some of the low-mid region as well as add some rumble to the drums.  Each track ended up calling for slightly different EQ frequencies, boost/cut and Q amounts, but the general approach for each was essentially the same.  Additionally, I used a yet-to-be-released plug-in to add a lot of “analog” character and natural sounding compression and saturation to each track – this worked incredibly well at adding a lot of punch and heavy sounding attack to the drums while gluing together the upper end of the frequency spectrum a lot better.  Lastly, I used the UAD Precision Limiter plug-in, adjusting for optimal release times for each track, in order to prevent digital overs as well as keep the dynamics in check without sounding overly compressed or unnatural.

The mastering for the vinyl was slightly different. Immediately after I decided to release on vinyl, my hunt started for a mastering engineer as I have not a clue how to master for vinyl. I remember reading an article on Sound on Sound here. It said:

Despite what you may have heard, mastering for vinyl is the easiest type of mastering you can do, as it involves only two steps: 1. Find a mastering engineer who has mastered a ton of recordings for release on vinyl. 2. Present your final mixes to that person and say “Here, you do it.”

I started to ask friends from all spectrums of the audio world and found Shawn Hatfield of Audible Oddities. He has mastered several of my friends records and also releases great music I used to listen to obsessively under the name Twerk. Being familiar with the mastering work he’s performed I knew he was the guy for the job. His rates are ridiculous for the amount of quality you end up with. Shawn had this to say about the mastering process for Plague Diagram:

The signal chain was fairly straight forward though having the Massive Passive allows for some interesting EQ. I used a shelf to add air, but gave that shelf a strong Q which gives it a dip of a couple dB at the chosen frequency. This allowed me to pull up some clarity in the drums but slightly suppress some of the piercing guitar all at once with a single EQ band. From there it went into the Manley Vari-Mu in compression mode, and just barely “kissed” the audio with less than 1dB of compression but used the input and output gain to add a little mojo as it hit the HEDD convertor with a touch (both at 2) of Pentode and Tape harmonics to add a layer of subtle but effective harmonics and saturation in the bottom.

As you can see, both of these mastering engineers used some similar components in their signal chain and came out with incredible results. The end product definitely take full advantage of the medium they’re presented on. The digital version is huge and strangely warm. It brings out the aggression and extensive range of sounds on found on all the layers. It’s not the loudest album but it breathes and brutalizes just as heavy as any other album. The vinyl release has a large dynamic range and the simplest way I can describe it is that it feels like an assault. All the analog components that Shawn used make the drums, at times, feel like a weapon and the synths sound like shimmering knives cutting through bone. Because of the snappy transients that Shawn dialed in – it sounds as deadly as it was intended to.

The manufacturing process of the vinyl has been (and currently still is!) incredibly stressful as I’m trying my best to keep the audio quality as high as possible. I contacted multiple vinyl pressing plants where they insisted I send in an audio cd where they would make record off of. I made them repeat this back to me just to be sure I was hearing correctly. I wish I could have recorded those conversations because you would have heard my brain melt through my nose with disgust and awe. Essentially they were compromising the quality of the album by making it 16 bit 44,100 kHz and restricting the quality to CD. What would be the point of that?! I finally settled on United Record Pressing where they spent the time to answer my dumb questions, clear up my insecurities on the process and most importantly retain the quality that Shawn Hatfield sent me with 24 bit, 48 kHz. They talked me out of some ideas I had because it would’ve affected the quality of the audio and I’ve decided on clear vinyl (which has a beautiful hypnotizing pattern) on high quality 180 gram discs. I’ve received test pressings that I’m not 100% satisfied with and it seems like they’re trying to accommodate my wishes for the highest quality possible. I’ll keep you posted on the process.

The artwork was created by Bridget Driessen whom I worked with before with Decrepit, Designed Deficiency and Programmed Cell Death. Like before I was always blown away by her attention to detail, evolution as an artist and ability to say something out of abstracts. I’ve never felt it was my place to tell where the artist to go but they needed to know where Plague Diagram is coming from. She asked what color template I wanted and told her a preference but left it up to her to follow it or not. The artwork can be seen in it’s intended medium when purchasing a vinyl copy of Plague Diagram. It’ll feature lyrics and credits on a 22 inch foldout. The digital files will feature only the cover and miss out on some extra goodies I’ll be throwing into all physical shipments like stickers and handwritten notes.

I’ll talk about my creative process in the next article. There are two songs now available for download above or here:

Plague Diagram
Twitter
Facebook

Surachai – Ashes

Along with the previously released Isolation, here is Ashes featuring Nordvargr and Andre Sanabria from The Abominable Iron Sloth. Nordvargr is working the modular synthesizer, creating aural black holes that give my stomach a sinking feeling. Andre worked out some DSP on SuperCollider and creates a subtle but overall devastating backing track. This is the second track of four from the upcoming Plague Diagram album I’m releasing sometime in December on Vinyl as well as digital release. You can download above or go to the site below.

*from Isolation post:
The opening track called Isolation to Plague Diagram is available for download over at PlagueDiagram.com. It features Alessandro Cortini on the Electronic Music Box, Richard Devine on modular synthesizers and additional DSP, Otto von Schirach with guest vocals and additional DSP work. Isolation sets the tone for the rest of the album and is probably the most user friendly track on Plague Diagram. Ashes, the next track, will be released in the coming weeks.

The album is currently set to be out early December on 180 gram clear vinyl and digital downloads with artwork by Bridget Driessen. I’ll continue to post updates on the release through twitter, facebook, here and at PlagueDiagram.com. If you have questions or comments the best way to engage me are those mediums.

Plague Diagram
Isolation Information

Surachai – Isolation


The opening track called Isolation to Plague Diagram is available for download over at PlagueDiagram.com. It features Alessandro Cortini on the Electronic Music Box, Richard Devine on modular synthesizers and additional DSP, Otto von Schirach with guest vocals and additional DSP work. Isolation sets the tone for the rest of the album and is probably the most user friendly track on Plague Diagram. Ashes, the next track, will be released in the coming weeks.

The album is currently set to be out early December on 180 gram clear vinyl and digital downloads with artwork by Bridget Driessen. I’ll continue to post updates on the release through twitter, facebook, here and at PlagueDiagram.com. If you have questions or comments the best way to engage me are those mediums.

Twitter
Facebook
Plague Diagram

Surachai – Plague Diagram

If you’ve been following me on Twitter or any other stalking service I’m apart of, you may know that I’m releasing an album in December called Plague Diagram. If not, now you know! The music will be a continuation of my previous releases like Programmed Cell Death and Designed Deficiency in that it will be a balance of metal plagued with modular synthesis. With this album, I’ve had the pleasure to work with some of my biggest influences and friends on this release.

In addition to having digital downloads, I also decided to press vinyl. Because of the amount of effort, pleasure and persistence that went into this release I wanted a resulting product that would carry a physical presence of said attributes and that is beyond disposable CDs and digital-only releases. The vinyl editions will be a limited edition of 180 gram clear vinyl with artwork by Bridget Driessen. I’m currently awaiting test pressing from the plant and can’t wait to hear how it translates!

I’ll be releasing the first track for free in a couple weeks! Stay frosty…

Plague Diagram
Surachai Twitter
Surachai Facebook

Synth Meet 8 – Waiting List

Trash_Audio and Xart are hosting the 8th Synth Meet in Chicago on September 18 and 19th. We’ve received an insane amount of response and while you’re still welcome to RSVP, have a waiting list because we’ve met our capacity. If someone bails, you’ll be notified in the order we received your request.

Division 6 (Washington)
Five12 Inc (New Mexico)
Flight of Harmony (Washington)
Gorilla Box (California)
Harvestman (Washington)
Make Noise (North Carolina)
Malekko (Oregon)
Mattson (Washington)
MegaOhmAudio (Illinois)
Pro Modular (New York)
STG (Illinois)
Tip Top Audio (California)

You can RSVP to trashaudio@gmail.com with “RSVP for Synth Meet 8″ in the subject and I’ll put you in line!

Sonoio – Launch

Alessandro Cortini has been working non-stop for the past few months on his Sonoio project which launches it’s campaign today. At the launch site you can pre-order the album in different formats and packages, take a closer look at the SuONOIO instrument, and watch the teasers we put together. Trash_Audio will have an exclusive video and interview coming soon. Until then, go and enjoy the sights and sounds of Sonoio.

Visit SONOIO.ORG
SONOIO Facebook

Sonoio (Alessandro Cortini) – Not Worth Remembering Teaser

sonoio2 from Alessandro Cortini on Vimeo.

Alessandro Cortini and I have been putting together teasers for his upcoming project’s album called Sonoio which comes out on July 28th 2010. Sign up below for updates and additional information. This is the second teaser, the first one we did is: Here! Enjoy!

Render:Error

Surachai + Justin = Render:Error

Two
The Pain

POLYFUSE – Live Analog Session

Every once in a while I like to hook up my ‘analog’ (No computers) setup and jam out while broadcasting the results on a videocast. Well, I was getting ready to disconnect all the gear in preparation for a big move so I thought’d I’d do one last analog session. This time I remembered to record the audio, so here it is. 1 hour and 22min of analog improvisations:

Direct Links to MP3’s:
Live Analog Session – Part 1
Live Analog Session – Part 2
Live Analog Session – Part 3

All part’s in one ZIP:
Download (183mb)

POLYFUSE – LIVE ANALOG SESSION – 2010

Recorded with the following:

Cwejman S1mk2
x0xb0x
TR-808
Grendel Drone Commander
Tubeworks Overdrive
Ross 10 Band EQ
Alesis Ineko
Soundcraft MFXi8

Stereo Output recorded with RME Fireface 800. Stereo two track mastered with UAD-2 Suite

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