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Posts from October 2012

NO GHOSTS. JUST FEAR. - 5 Original Dark Ambient Synthetic Soundscapes

No Ghosts Just Fear cover

New Dark Ambient Album

I’m happy to announce the release of my new album No Ghosts. Just Fear. It’s an EP with five original horror soundscapes. The album is only available as an album download from as they supports the high-resolution formats required for proper listening :^)

Here is a link

Go for the High-Rez Download :^)
The dark ambient sounds and music within these arrangements was created and performed on various virtual instruments (see notes below). In some cases original audio recordings were used as sources then re-shaped with granular synthesis to turn these recordings into playable expressive instruments with huge sonic range and motion.

The album was mastered by the wonderful Gannon Kashiwa who is the Director of Digital Media at the Denver Museum of Nature and Science  - so you'll hear the incredible sonic range and detail of these pieces if you go for the downloads. The streaming versions just don’t do the tracks justice.

With this in mind I’m making the entire album (14 minutes of horror in 5 soundscapes) available for only $3. I hope this is a no brainer price that makes you want to go for the lossless CD Quality FLAC or at least MP3 320 (click here if you have questions about format). A lot of work went into the sonic detail so it’s worth it to take the time to listen on good system with a sub – or with great headphones. No earbuds please – lol.

Liner Notes +

The Liner notes pasted in below with the addition of “Synths Used” for you Modulate This! readers. Note tracks 2-4 each use a single synth and single deep performance preset programmed from INIT.

I hope hearing these tracks inspires you to dig deeper into programming from INIT with a smaller number of synths in your rig. Going deep allows you to create expressive patches and presets with performance in mind and transcend these synths making them true instruments.

I’ll also add that the entire album was produced and mixed with Ableton Live. Gannon Mastered in Pro Tools.

Thanks for your support and If you enjoy the album please pass it on. Happy Halloween!

Mark Mosher
Synthesist & Composer, Boulder, CO


This album contains five original instrumental horror soundscapes by Boulder-based synthesist and composer Mark Mosher. Listen in the dark on a great sound system with a sub-woofer or with good headphones (not ear buds) and let your imagination run wild! Then remember, it’s all in your head :^) 



© 2011-2012 (CC-BY-NC) Mark J. Mosher
Composed, Arranged, Programmed, Performed, and Produced by Mark Mosher
Mastered by Gannon Kashiwa
Cover Design by Dave Weed
Cover Photo by Mark Mosher


1 Primeval
Amygdala kicks in as you enter the fear zone. Remember, it's all in your head!

I use hand crafted synthetic sounds (subtractive and additive synthesis) to create strange tones, textures. and rhythms to build tension. Fast note-runs, and radical tempo changes will creep you out. This piece was performed using Percussa AudioCubes. Note I released this as a single in 2011. Even if you've heard it before I recommend you buy the album to get this new high-resolution remix. For this remix I reprogrammed some of the effects, remixed the track a bit, and then re-rendered with highest quality synth settings. Plus this track and all others were mastered by Gannon Kashiwa and it sounds simply incredible!

Synths Used: Waldorf Largo, 4 Instances of Image-Line Harmless. I also used Percussa Improvisor with original sequences controlled from AudioCubes which got fed into Live to drive the virtual synths. Further editing and production was done in Live.

2 Alone in the Dark
When you are alone in the dark your mind will play tricks.

Over the last year I've been spending time listening to the tone. harmonics, overtones, and distortion created by expressive electric guitar greats like David Gilmour. "Alone in the Dark" is my exploration of expressive manipulation of harmonics and distortion with a single synthesizer patch custom programmed. As a result you'll hear me go beyond the sonic range of guitars into the sub-harmonic realm.

Synths Used: Waldorf Largo

3 Fight or Flight
Your brain is on overload as you run for your life through a dark building searching for the exit.

I broke a long complex original audio recording into small chunks called "grains" with a custom patch in a virtual instrument called Absynth. My patch allows me to traverse, manipulate and perform with this massive sample as if it's an expressive instrument with a very unique harmonic palette.

4 Under the Spider’s Web
There is a dim golden light ahead in the dark. Between you and the light, there is a spider and of course a large web blocking your path. Was that something crawling down the back of your neck?

Like the last track, this is custom granular synth performance.

Synths Used: Native Instruments Absynth 5, Rob Papen Predator FX

5 Orbiting Miranda
Inspired by the film Serenity.

I used a variety of custom programmed virtual synths and effects to create this lush but dark ambient piece. Note I released this as a single in 2011. Even if you've heard it before I recommend you buy the album to get this new high-resolution remix re-mastered by Gannon Kashiwa.

Synths Used: Native Instruments Absynth 5, 3 Instances of Tone2 Saurus, Rob Pappen Predator FX & RP-Verb.

The Waldorf Time Warp Weekend Sale Including License SL for Blofeld Desktop for Activating Sample Memory

Watch embedded video.

Waldorf has a sale going on this weekend. The time warp theme is related to European daylight savings time change which happens this Sunday. The sale is for this weekend only.

Use the discount codes in the video for your order and save up to 30% on

  • Largo
  • Waldorf Edition
  • Waldorf Edition Upgrade
  • PPG V3
  • Waldorf PPG Wave 3.V Upgrade
  • Lector
  • Atmospheric Transients
  • Jörg Schaafs Blofeld Xperience Vol 1
  • Blofeld License SL

Note, Waldorf’s virtual synths require eLicenser software (and can also be transferred to USB-eLicenser). This is normally a show stopper for me but I like Largo so much I made an exception to my rule.  If your curious how Largo compares to the Blofeld, checkout this post. You can download demos of the instruments first if to see if they are right for you.

Also note that License SL is on the list. So if you’ve been waiting to upgrade you’re your Blofeld Desktop to activate the sample memory now might be the time.

Mark Mosher
Electronic Music Artist, Boulder, CO
Official Web Site:
Listen/Download Albums:

Ableton Live 9 and Push (Velocity and Pressure Sensitive Controller) Announced

Live 9 has been announced along with a brand new controller called Push. I’m going to include a few videos below then send you over to Create Digital Music where Peter Kirn who has fantastic hands-on experience and coverage with the betas. Oh, and you should check out the re-launch of Ableton's web site.

What’s New in Live 9

Watch embedded video | See Create Digital Music’s Coverage


Watch embedded video | See Create Digital Music Coverage

I’m personally very excited about this controller and can’t wait to try one.

Mark Mosher
Electronic Music Artist, Boulder, CO
Official Web Site:
Listen/Download Albums:

Ronald Jenkees is Back on YouTube!

It’s been 3 years since Ronald Jenkees released his last CD Disorganized Fun. He also hasn’t posted on YouTube for years. I’m happy to report he’s back! He has been getting more active on Facebook and SoundCloud as he gets closer to releasing album 3. He just posted a brand new jam video on YouTube today!

You can buy this song as a single on his site here as digital download, or amazon, Bandcamp, or iTunes.



Mark Mosher
Electronic Music Artist, Boulder, CO
Official Web Site:
Listen/Download Albums:

Absynth 5 Synthesizer Envelope Editing Tips

One of the best features of Absynth 5 are the 68 breakpoint envelopes. If you’ve mainly been shaping envelopes by dragging breakpoints around with your mouse here are some tips on adding even more character and expression to your envelopes.

Type in Breakpoint Times


You can set the time for a breakpoint manually by entering the number of seconds for the break point. The Abs/BP switch determines the position of the breakpoint on the timeline. From p. 116 in the manual:

Abs/BP Time control: Determines the Breakpoint’s position on the time axis. Enter the duration in seconds. Depending on the setting of the BP Time Toggle on its left, you can either enter the duration since the previous Breakpoint (Bp sec) or since the beginning of the Envelope (Abs sec).

This is such a cool feature because you can not only be very precise but you can create extremely long envelope segments adding subtle motion and character.

Add LFOs and Modulate Breakpoints

I used Absynth quite a while before I bothered to click on the LFO and Control tabs. Using these tabs you can add LFO’s to envelope segments and modulate Amp and Time of a breakpoint using controllers.


More Tips on Absynth

Mark Mosher
Electronic Music Artist, Boulder, CO
Official Web Site:
Listen/Download Albums:

Photos from The Fantastic Moldover Workshop in Denver. Watch for a Workshop In Your City.


Moldover is on tour and made a stop in Denver to perform a show and give a workshop at The Church nightclub in Denver last night. A big thanks to Marc Wei of Ableton Colorado for behind-the-scenes work to pull this workshop together in Denver.

Moldover’s workshop offered a nice blend of topics including controllerism, controller building,  real-time effect processing on vocals, Ableton, workflow, creativity, personal productivity, song writing, and touring.  I highly recommend you attend one if you get the chance. Checkout his tour page for a calendar.

Throughout the workshop he performed some songs using a custom Guitar (Robocaster) with buttons, joystick, and accelerometers; the MOJO customer controller; and a new prototype of a vocal controller called the MOJITO that is clamped to the mic stand.

Here is a close-up shot of the MOJO which has buttons, knobs, switches, sliders and touch strips.


It  is built around the notion of 4 tracks of real-time controllerism and playback control (inspired by 4 track tape deck work). Each type of controller is assigned a specific type of role. For example touch strips control tonal modulations.

There were lots of behind-the-scene looks at his Ableton sets. DSCN5072

During and after the workshop Moldover took the time to answer questions.


It was so great to meet Moldover in person after all these year. He was a huge inspiration for my controllerism work, rig, and the 9 Box Casual instrument.

More Photos
Checkout this flickr set for more photos.


Mark Mosher
Electronic Music Artist, Boulder, CO
Official Web Site:
Listen/Download Albums:

Update on Tim Thompson's Kinect Space Palette + Burning Man 2012 Video

space-palette burning man

Back in April of 2011 I posted “An Exclusive First Look at Tim Thompson's Kinect-Based Instrument”.  I got to hang out with Tim at the Guthman Instrument Competition at Georgia Tech in February and did a follow up post on his progress in April of this year, It’s been cool to see Space Palette evolve.

I spoke with Tim earlier this week via Skype to get an update. First off, here is some background in case this is the first time your hearing about the project.

What is the Space Palette?

The Space Palette is a musical and graphical instrument that lets you play music and paint visuals simultaneously by waving your hands in the holes of a wood frame. No pre-recorded media, sequences, or loops are used - everything is generated in realtime by your hands.

The wood frame is a reference for the player, while the Microsoft Kinect is used to detect the position of whatever hands (or objects) appear in the holes of the frame. The depth of your hands matters as much as their left/right/up/down position - it's like having multiple three-dimensional mouse pads in mid-air. Any number of hands can be used.

Musically, the large holes are like keyboards (left-to-right) on which you play individual notes, and hand depth controls things like vibrato and filters. Visually, the large holes allow you to paint with graphical shapes (heavily processed by visual effects), and hand depth controls their size.

The 12 small holes in the corners of the Space Palette are used to select different sets of sounds and graphics. Each of the 4 large holes plays a different sound and paints a different graphic, simultaneously.


It ends up Tim brought the Space Palette to Burning Man again this year. Checkout this great video of Burning Man attendees playing the latest incarnation of the instrument. Here is what Tim had to say about the latest version of Space Palette:

This video shows the latest version of the Space Palette at Burning Man 2012. It was running every night from 9pm to 5am, with almost constant use because of its placement in Illumination Village (Esplanade and 2:15). I re-used pieces of Monolith 2.0 (my installation from 2009) to construct a wood projector screen designed to withstand high winds, and I built boxes to protect the projector and laptop from the dust.

The sounds and graphics were much improved from previous versions, and the user interface was simplified. All 12 of the small holes now do the same thing - each one selects a preset of both sounds and graphics, and the name of the preset is briefly displayed on the projected image to provide feedback.

The preset names made it easier for people to find the sounds they wanted to use. Headphones were provided, allowing people to hear the sounds more clearly. All in all, it performed extremely well, and people enjoyed it immensely.

House Performance

Here is another video I found of Tim playing Space Palette. There is more ambient light in the room so it’s easier to see how the instrument works.

More Info
A longer version of the video above can be found here . For more information about the Space Palette, visit

Mark Mosher
Electronic Music Artist, Boulder, CO
Official Web Site:
Listen/Download Albums: