Thursday, 24 December 2009

Music Minute - Silent Night

An analogue carol for the festive season.

Featuring a Roland Super Jupiter, modular and EHX Poly Chorus and Stereo Memory Man w/ Hazarai.

Happy Holidays! Cheers, Navs.

Silent Night  by  navs

Monday, 21 December 2009

Patch of the Day - Or What?

Ever wondered what else that OR socket on your Maths might be good for?

Today's Patch of the Day uses analogue logic to mix two sequences and then generate random pitch changes to an otherwise static sequence:

PotD - Or What ?  by  navs

In the first example, I manually adjusted the positive scaling of two sequences.

In the second take, I replaced one sequence with the stepped out of a Wogglebug. When the WB's output is higher than the sequence, a random note is added to the output.

If you've patched the ADSR example from the Maths manual, you might have realized that the OR output is a positive-CV-only maximum selector, similar to half of Doepfer's A-172 Maximum/ Minimum Selector. Unlike digital (binary) logic which only has two states, given a mix of CV sources, the highest voltage will be output in the form of a peak-CV contour. As you can hear in the example below, this is very different to mixing/ summing CVs:

(A-172. Two LFOs, summed mix, then max & min outputs)

Doepfer's Min/Max has the advantage of being able to process both positive and negative voltages and can be used to generate odd waveforms. See the product page and manual for more ideas.

Monday, 14 December 2009

Forbidden Planet @ TU Studio this Thursday

If you're in Berlin this Thursday, the TU Studio is showing Forbidden Planet as a Christmas special EM Hören session. With music by Louis and Bebe Barron, it's sure to be a treat for all electronic music fans. Thanks to Penko for the tip-off!.

TU Studio address and directions here.

Wednesday, 9 December 2009

Patch of the Day - Harmonyhertz

I twisted my knee and had to undergo an MRI scan this week. For those of you who haven't had the pleasure, this is what it sounds like:

Harmonyhertz-PotD  by  navs

Having entered the machine, you're given a pair of noise-canceling headphones. The classical music that is piped through these is supposed to calm and distract you from the grunts and buzzes generated by the scanner. Don't know which device was responsible, but the kick and hi-hat pattern was a bizarre counterpoint. Sort of like a Clockwork Orange warehouse party. Someone with a sense of humour at Siemens, the company that built the contraption, decided to call it 'Harmony'. The nurse told me that the larger unit is called 'Symphony'.


The patch features four voices: kick and hi-hat, ring modulated squarewaves, FM klunk and some 'ducked' classical music. Although I managed to use up nearly all of my patch cables, it was actually fairly straightforward.

Drums: MMF-1 sine wave kick, M12-filtered-noise hat. LFO provides rhythm, VCS provides gate delay for 'swing'.

Buzz: Wogglebug stepped out provides slow pitch changes for VCO-2RM. Two square waves, with a touch of XMod and manual pitch and PWM tweaking, are output from the ring modulator. Timing is generated by the burst out of the WB which is patched to a clock divider. The /8 gate signal triggers one Maths channel. An inverse /8 gate is fed to a second Maths EG so that the klunks are timed to occur after each buzz has sounded.

Klunk: M15 & AFG lin FM plus some pitch woggle and envelope thwapping from Maths and the mix out of an A-143-1. Maths' EOC used to trigger the Doepfer, klunk gated by M13 LPG.

Classical: Borg-filtered with a bit of FM from the combined buzz & klunk CVs. Vactrol speed in evidence as the CV takes a while to fade away from it's peak.

Ducking: this was achieved by sending the classical sample to the first channel of an A-134-2 VC Xfader, the audio mix of buzz and klunk to the second and applying the combined buzz and klunk CVs to the (asymmetrical) Xfader.

Hope you enjoyed the sounds and remember to look after yourselves!

This PotD dedicated with thanks to the docs and nurses.

Friday, 4 December 2009

Talking Macbeth

A few impressions from Ken Macbeth's workshop at Schneiders Buero last night.

Ken showcased his new Euro-format modules & CV keyboard prototype, discussed the pros and cons of discrete vs. surface mount designs and left us sick with envy with the tale of how he 'liberated' an Arp 2600 & Synthi AKS from his local music college.

Thanks to Ken and Andreas for a memorable evening!