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audio_Output: Chris de Luca vs Phon.o DJ Mix

We just got word that the CLP crew just released two free DJ mixes in time for your new years party.
“First of all we wish you all a great new years eve party and all the best for 2008! To let you dance your ass off, we thought this would help you out.” – CLP
Also sure to catch their article with us about their workspace.

Click the kicks for the downloads

Chris de Luca’s Sensational Mix

Phon.o’s Back2Bounce Mix

Folktek's Harmonic Field Contact Synthesizer

Folktek just sent over a new video they made of their Harmonic Field Contact Synth. It looks beautiful and it certainly SOUNDS beautiful. Be sure to check out their Workspace and Environment article from a day or so ago here.

Richard Devine: Analog Live! Follow Up (Now with TWO pictures)

Hello all. I’ve skimmed through a lot of forums that link to us and there is a lot of slander and animosity even but hey, what’s new! I decided to re-interview some of our artists. Also, I made a point that I was not going to write these articles as a reaction to negativity nor a defense for our fellow artists. I was simply going to have an open dialog that would naturally address issues through personality, also I thought would be somewhat of an interesting read. Now onto the interview!

Can you talk about your endorsements? What do the companies expect of you when they sign you on?

Well, most of the gear that was given to me was like I said from the previous answer is from projects where I designed factory patches or internal sounds. I know a lot of people probably think that I am some rich bastard who just collects synths and piles them up in a room, when honestly they were all companies that I worked with in creating the sounds for each synth. Every synth you see in my studio was a project that I participated in and you can find many of my sounds in these synths. It’s really fun, I look at sound synth programming as one of my favorite things to do these days. I can really learn new hardware and technology and at the same time build my sound design library which grows a little more each week.

You mentioned you had heart surgery a while ago. Although we talked about it privately, can you divulge publicly what happened?

Well, I got what is called “bacterial endocarditis” which is basically a staph infection of your blood which then attacks your heart valves and outer lining of the heart. Its very bad stuff, and it almost killed me twice in the hospital this year. I spent a good two months rehabilitating myself back to normal from that. I didn’t get away unscathed as I now have a mechanical heart valve ticking away in my aortic opening. So I now click and tick like a real machine. I even have my own serial and ID number now. I guess I have turned into a real life droid=) It’s been a rough recovery to get back on my feet, and get my life back in order. It was a massive ordeal and I thank god that I am back on planet earth again. I was never faced with the idea of my own mortality until this all happened. You never think that you could loose your life at such a young age. I am only 31 so it was shocking to hear that I would have to have open heart surgery, and be on blood thinners (rat poison) for the rest of my life. It has completely changed my outlook on life. I really appreciate every day I have now.

Onto something more lighthearted…. PUN INTENDED
I know how you use modular but can you explain how you approach them for people who may not know? I usually separate people into two groups: there are the musical modulars and the sound design modular heads. (A good portion of people find themselves in both categories.)

Well, I would definitely consider myself a Sound Design modular head. I always use these systems for more non-musical things. Mostly for random generators, chaos frequency modulation, and creating alien modulated sound structures. I have always loved the fact that you can patch, multiply, cross feedback, invert, mutate, and divide, what you will of control voltages giving you lots of options for making complex sounds. Which is what initially drew me into using them in the first place? I still have all my old modulars synths, as I always love going back to them and messing around, and sampling them. You see that my collection of modular stuff revolves more around chaotic random things, like the Doepfer 149-1, 2, and two of Peter’s Heisenberg Generators. I am still building more, but I love using modules that generate random voltages and gates much like Don Buchla’s 266e (Source Of Uncertainty). I usually patch things around until I get something really interesting then sample it and then dump it into Battery 3 or Kontakt 3 for further manipulation and control.

Can you talk about how you saw yourself compliment the other artists and the analog live show in general.

I was asked to participate in the show about a year ago. I have been long time friends with Peter Grenader from Plan B modular (Ear Acoustic). He had been playing around with the idea of doing a show with artists and friends he admired. I have always loved Peter’s work. His music and the piece “The Secret Life of Semiconductors” he played is one of my favorite analogue pieces to date. I was very excited at working with Peter and doing a show with him. It turned out to be a complete success and I was extremely happy to meet the other artists like Alessandro Cortini, and Chas Smith who I have been a long time fan for many years. It was a very interesting to see how everyone approached using these new and old machines to make compositional works. I unfortunately couldn’t bring out my modular stuff, as I have strict weight lifting restrictions from only having my surgery months ago. So I had to play on my computers which I know many people might have frowned on me for, but it was the only way I could participate in the show. I was just happy to be there and experience the show.

Obviously modulars are limited in their capabilities for performance but have major advantages in the studio: What was your thought process in getting together your performance?

Yes, there are some definite limitations to using analogue modular gear for live performances, but I like that in a way. I like having only a few options and really making the best out of the situation. I have performed a number of times with my modular gear, and sometimes like to jam live on the old TR-606 and TB-303. I love that you can work a crowd with just minimal equipment and I try to really work at my musical composition and sequencing to heighten the experience.

You said, and I along with others agree, that having too much gear hinders you from being productive (programming, fleshing out ideas). Can you explain how you see your gear in your studio?

I totally agree with that. Like I said I work mostly from my kitchen table these days, with just my macbook and sony viao, and sound card. Its super simple I keep everything in one environment. I work mostly on sound design projects, working with major advertising companies, as well as other audio manufactures always creating new sounds. I do have a lot of keyboards, but these where projects where I design or programmed the sounds for each of these companies, so I acquired many hardware synths as you can see. It’s great to have them here as I like to compare notes all the time when designing new sounds for another company. I will compare thousands of patches on different machines, using different forms of synthesis. I use them all at one point or another. Everything gets sampled or manipulated to use as a layer or component in a piece or for a sound layer in something else that I give to users in sound libraries or other synth sounds.

NAMM IS OURS! and a quick roundup

Justin and I have been relentlessly trying to coax our way into NAMM this year. We know some people that are going to be there and working for booths, we somehow even know a band that could get us in even though NAMM says that musicians aren’t allowed. Basically we had a lot of begging to do but throughout all this searching, we should’ve been a little more self-aware and looked at our own blog as a means. Justin wrote a nice little letter and almost instantly we were accepted!! So if you see two dorky kids (Justin is the tall skinny white kid with glasses and boots. I’m the medium asian kid with piercings, scars and tattoos) wearing media badges, please say hi. Actually, say ‘HI!” loudly so people will think we’re important and thus solidifying our ‘credentials’. Obviously we’ll be putting posts up about our upcoming charade of importance and of course we won’t tell you about the newest gear. We’ll leave that to everyone else.

And since a bragging post isn’t really acceptable, I’m putting together quick recap of the artists we’ve posted so far. There is a history section somewhere at the bottom right of the webpage but if you’re too lazy to scroll down, here it is:

Richard Devine
Dino Felipe
Aaron Spectre
Captain Ahab
Zach Goheen
Atom TM
James Cigler
Scott Jaeger
Keith Hillebrandt
Landau Orchestra
The Depreciation Guild

Sonic State's Weekly Audio Podcast… has been around forever and features a weekly audio podcast that is definitely worth listening to. They touch on a lot of different topics but, so far, my favorite episode is number 65A. In this, Richard Evans carries a portable recorder with him to capture and share his experience of touring with Peter Gabriel.

This weeks episode is extra special as they mention Trash_Audio and cover the topic ‘Workspaces and Environments’ Check it out here!

Scream 2007: Analog Live!

Our friend, Richard Devine, will be performing along with several other musicians in a one off show based around analog equipment on Friday November 16, 2007 in Los Angeles, California. Also, another guest in our Workspace series is included in the performance, Alessandro Cortini. If you live around the area, I highly recommend checking this show.

You can more information about the event: here and here.

Peter Grenader from the Plan B User Group Forum:
As far as the equipment we’ll be using, we’ve put together an orchestra of oscillators: Off the top of my head – three rather large Plan B systems, a Doepfer/Plan B/Livewire system, Arp 2600, two cabinets of Aries, one nine panel and a medium-sized three panel Serge fitted with a custom Plan B model 13, the largest Wiard system in the world, an EMS Synthi-AKS, the EAR Performance system, a Buchla 200e, Nord Modular, a Novation, a Waldorf Wave, two tcelectronic reverbs (a
2000 and 60000), tons of delays and a Yamaha SPX90. Controller include a C-Thru-Music Axis, a Continuum Fingerboard, a Doepfer PK88 and MAQ 16/3, Roland A-33, a Fatar workstation and an Analogue Systems French

Along with a wall of effect racks, Chas Smith will be bringing two of his own instruments: the Guitarilla and the Towers. Guitarzilla is a steel guitar made of machined aluminum and welded titanium tubing. It has a 12 string neck tuned to a diatonic scale and an 8-string bass neck. It is also fitted with a small waterless Waterphone-type instrument which is bowed. The Towers are eight 1 1/4″ diameter grade 9 titanium rods with titanium plates welded on the ends which are both bowed and struck with a variety of mallets. The longest Tower is109″, standing over 10 feet tall in it’s hanger, and the shortest is 55″. They have been cut to form a scale which can be obliterated by the complexity of the sounds that the plates generate. They’re
sonically and visually majestic, bordering on astonishing. Go here for a photo:

We will be performing six pieces, one each from the six players, all of which performed by the ensemble – it’s not a series of solo performances. Three of the pieces will be world premiers.

These pictures were ganked from Matrixsynth. More pictures can be found: here.

Plan B and Livewire: Modular Synth Reviews

One reason we’re not doing too many reviews of equipment at the moment, is primarily because of James Cigler. James has several reviews of current modules from Livewire and Plan B and I must say, they are the most informative and easy to follow reviews I have seen for modular synths. I have also managed to trick him into joining our Workspaces and Environment series.

If you’re considering buying modules but are halfway confused on their true functions, here are some examples of his reviews:

Livewire: Vulcan Modulator

Plan B: Model 24 Heisenberg Generator

Livewire: Dual Cyclotron

Logic 8 Tip: Remove the previously unremovable Transport!

More than a few people have been unreceptive to the fact that the transport bar at the bottom of new arrange window in Logic 8 can not be removed. Well, now there is a way to remove it thanks to someone smart on the Sonikmatter Logic forums.

So, if you’d like more space on your arrange page, try this:

Open Key Commands (Option + K)

Search for “Open Trash” command

Set command to a key or key combination (Mine is Control + Shift + =)

Once that is done, try the new key command while you have an arrange page open. Now a new arrange page will open on top WITHOUT the transport bar stuck to the bottom. It will even work with screen sets!

Cwejman + Livewire Modules Arrive!

After playing with Justin McGrath’s Cwejman S1 semi modular synth for months, I had to find a way to get those deadly envelopes into my modular setup. Daily, I tortured myself by going to Analoghaven and through some soul searching, decided to sell some gear. Things I weren’t using were piling up and I didn’t want my modular setup to become out of control. I already have so many modules laying around (so sad) and I travel way too much to have an insane modular setup. Richard Devine convinced me to grab the Livewire Dalek on our retarded talks about metal and modular gear. We seem to go for the most aggressive and violent sounding modules with some sort of intelligence.
I check Analoghavens used section like a crack habit and have never seen Livewire or Cwejman modules there. When I saw them on the page, I didn’t think, I just started clicking. Afterwards I realized what I’ve done to my financial situation though I didn’t care too much. My priorities are a bit backwards.

First Impressions:
The Cwejman VM-1 has a nice weight to it and it’s constructed beautifully. There is a plate on the back for protection and its incredibly thin/shallow (like its big brother, the S1) compared to doepfer modules. I believe it is safe to say that the Cwejman modules are among the best constructed modules on the market. The back plate has some holes where you can calibrate the oscillator. The knobs themselves are easier to turn than Doepfer pots.

The Livewire Dalek is like any standard Euro rack module but at first glance, the knobs and layout are different. There is some strange dark adhesive on the sides of the boards, I decided I’m not going to bother cleaning as i dont have to look at it in two minutes ayhow. The module is deeper than Doepfer modules and probably 3 times as deep as the Cwejman and it barely squeezes in the case.

The Video:
I thought I knew how I wanted the setup to be. I mean, I thought about it day in and out for months but when it finally gets down to it, I crumble. I hate taking out modules i will use and my other g6 case is in another state.
I unplugged the power cord from the back of the case and unscrewed all the modules I would be replacing.

After reading about the Cwejman modules power supplies I had to be sure of the correct way to install it before turning it on. so i called Analoghaven and got in touch with Antonio who is always helpful. There is a red stripe on the power cord and it has to be facing up. You can see me finding a bent knob on one of my modules and I keep fingering it. I have never seen that knob bent before but realized I took this box around with me Europe and its had its share of abuse. Airplanes, trains, cars, drunks, drug addicts, and worst of all, other musicians. Some asshole even spilled beer on it in Madrid, but thankfully the lid was closed and it didn’t get through. Either way, I don’t recommend you even try.
I always get confused with how to hook up the A-155 sequencer to the A-154 controller, so you can see me fiddling with that for a while. trial and error for a good 10 minutes. Which I don’t recommend. You should probably read the manual that has diagrams. Eventually things start working and you can see me breaking in the new modules.

After playing for 5 minutes, I’ll share some thoughts.
The Cwejman VM-1 is exactly what i thought it would be, a self contained synthesizer with great thick oscillator with 7 waveforms, a standard multimode filter, and an envelope generator/vca to kill for. the envelopes are the sickest I’ve ever played with, creating a extremely aggressive and sharp synth. the multimode filter is white bread, but the q-peak adds extra grime to the mix and having all the parameters cv-able makes it versatile. There is one downfall with the layout, which happens to be 3 switches caught between the knobs. It’s a strange place to put them, but I couldn’t really think of a better location on the face.
The Livewire Dalek modulator is sick as hell. I can’t even explain what it does right now, but I can tell its used mostly to mangle your sound through two vco’s that can be used to ring modulate your sound into oblivion. The vco outputs are interesting to listen to alone as they don’t simply rise and fall, but I’m not quite sure how I will use them yet. Cosmetically its very similar to Doepfer gear, but I prefer Livewire layouts as they are a bit more interesting to look at, and a major plus is different sized knobs.
All in all, I’ll be starving this month for these two modules and of course its worth it.
If you have any hard questions, dont ask me. Check out Felix Inferious’s review of the Dalek Modulator! Read the proper review on the Cwejman VM-1 here.

Juno 106 Voice Chip Replacement

After having a brief freak out about my Juno 106’s ‘hanging notes’, I thought something was wrong with the envelope section but with very little investigation, it seems like its something more common: a bad voice chip.
Apparently Juno 106’s blow their chips regularly/inevitably and this guy took the time to clone the Roland chips as they don’t make them anymore. Hes on the second generation of clones and they’re only 40 euros.
Visit this guy as well if you want some additional information on the clones and replacement procedures.
Also, if anyone has bought a space echo replacement tape loop from these guys or if you have any alternatives, let me know. seems like a few sites have their own spin on it, so if you know of something reliable, comment away.

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