Documentary: "What the Future Sounded Like" (Musique concrète with Tape/Early Samplers, Dr. Who, EMS VC3, Digital PDP-8s, LSD and More...)

  What the future sounded like

Here is a fascinating documentary released in 2006.The entire 27 minute video is available on Vimeo https://vimeo.com/70164353 or you can watch it in the embedded player below.

It's defintely worth your time if you've never seen it - so bookmark for later if you don't have time to watch it now. Some nice Dr. Who action at 6:46. Also, fascinating info on an early seqeuncer built with a Digital Equipment Coporation PDP-8 at the 10:32 mark.

 

What The Future Sounded Like from Closer Productions on Vimeo.

Synopsis

Post-war Britain rebuilt itself on a wave of scientific and industrial breakthroughs that culminated in the cultural revolution of the 1960’s. It was a period of sweeping change and experimentation where art and culture participated in and reflected the wider social changes. In this atmosphere was born the Electronic Music Studios (EMS), a radical group of avant-garde electronic musicians who utilized technology and experimentation to compose a futuristic electronic sound-scape for the New Britain. 

Comprising of pioneering electronic musicians Peter Zinovieff and Tristram Cary (famed for his work on the Dr Who series) and genius engineer David Cockerell, EMS’s studio was one of the most advanced computer-music facilities in the world. EMS’s great legacy is the VCS3, Britain’s first synthesizer and rival of the American Moog. The VCS3 changed the sounds of some of the most popular artists of this period including Brian Eno, Hawkwind and Pink Floyd. Almost thirty years on the VCS3 is still used by modern electronic artists like The Emperor Machine. 

What The Future Sounded Like colours in a lost chapter in music history, uncovering a group of composers and innovators who harnessed technology and new ideas to re-imagine the boundaries of music and sound. Features music from Pink Floyd, Hawkwind, Roxy Music and The Emperor Machine. 

Check out the official web site for more info http://www.whatthefuturesoundedlike.com/ .

Want an EMS VCS in your rig? Here are some virtual versions:

Mark Mosher 
Electronic Musician, Boulder, CO
 
http://www.markmoshermusic.com 
http://www.aiwinter.net 
http://bouldersynth.com (meetup)

 


Behind-The-Scenes Video: NIN "Echoplex" Live at Rehearsals, July 2008

Here is a little inspiraiton to start your weekend. I've always loved this song and it's pretty great to see it performed in the rehearsal context.

Recorded live at rehearsals in Los Angeles. From a series of performances directed by Rob Sheridan, available on The Slip Limited Edition CD/DVD: http://theslip.nin.com/physical/

http://youtu.be/0hfxwd3zpYo

Mark Mosher 
Electronic Musician, Boulder, CO
 
http://www.markmoshermusic.com 
http://www.aiwinter.net 
http://bouldersynth.com (meetup)


Absynth Sound Design Experiment - Non-Linear Radioactive Soda Can

Radioactive soda can

I recently did a post where I manipulated the sample of the sound of a pen striking a half-full can of soda with Ableton Push and pad pressure. In this post I used the same sample, but this time with Absynth. You can listen to the experiment on Soundcloud here or in the embedded player below.

The recoridng starts with the original sample just to illistrate the starting point. I built an Absynth preset with granular synthesis to manipulate the play head plus grain size. I use the Aetherizer effect to further manipulate the signal with a comb filter with feedback. I achieve non-linearity by setting the sample start envelope to "Loop" which causes the sound to keep re triggering and playing through the grains and filing up the Aetherizer's buffer. When played at certain pitches, this non-linearity feedback results in a Geiger counter-like sound. All that from a coke can strike :^) A play the preset with various notes to show how different the harmonic content is as it feedback at different frequencies.

I've become quite handy with Absynth, so if there is some aspect of Absynth you'd like me to do a post on, leave a comment.
  

Mark Mosher 
Electronic Musician, Boulder, CO
 
http://www.markmoshermusic.com 
http://www.aiwinter.net 
http://bouldersynth.com (meetup)


Internet Finds: Video Gorillaz MTV Cribs

Gorillaz MTV Cribs

I stumbled on this bizarre and cool video of an MTV Cribs episode of Cribs featuring the Gorillaz. Yes it's animatied. The video is loaded with tons of funny and snarky comments about rock n' roll and celbrity :^) It's definitly worth watching all the way through.  Favorite quote at 3:14 in the video...

"I've seen quite a few episodes of MTV Cribs and every house is the same. What's all that about?. The first thing these peasants do when they get any money is buy some tacky show home and then fill it up with all this shit.".

... all while taking a leak - lol. 

Here is the video http://youtu.be/2mL19xFGkIo.  

Follow Gorillaz online:
http://gorillaz.com
http://facebook.com/Gorillaz
http://twitter.com/GorillazBand

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Mark Mosher 
Electronic Musician, Boulder, CO
 
http://www.markmoshermusic.com 
http://www.aiwinter.net 
http://bouldersynth.com (meetup)


Ableton Push Impov: Vinyl Needle Drops in Drum Racks (Real-Time & Step Automation)

Working with the Elektron Octatrack has gotten back into sampling big time. Some of the things you can do with an Octatrack - like per step automation - can also be done with Ableton Push when working in "Note" mode in drum racks.

Push-step-automation

  1. One you turn on a note in the step sequencer, you can then hold the note down to acces all sort of parameters for devices. While holding the step...
  2. Adjust params to your liking. In this example I'm changing the pitch of each step in the step-sequencer.

You can of course record real-time automation by simply pressing the "Automation" button when in record or overdub mode. 

Below is an example audio snippet I put on soundcloud of doing such that. I sampled audio from random needle drops on vinyl into clips and used them to build a custom drum rack.  I then improvised using Push to perform and sequence these clips including per step automation of various parameters.

Mark Mosher 
Electronic Musician, Boulder, CO
 
http://www.markmoshermusic.com 
http://www.aiwinter.net 
http://bouldersynth.com (meetup)


Manipulating a Percussive Soda Can Sample using Pad Pressure on Ableton Push #MadeWithLive

Soda-can

I recorded the sound of a pen striking a half-full soda can. I loaded this into Sampler and went to the MIDI panel and mapped "Aftertouch" (pad pressure) to "Loop Length" with a value of -100. Now pad pressure modulate the loop length.

Aftertouch-loop-length

Here is a video of this sound design work in progress - http://youtu.be/Ld5KWyGs9_M.

 

Mark Mosher 
Electronic Musician, Boulder, CO
 
http://www.markmoshermusic.com 
http://www.aiwinter.net 
http://bouldersynth.com (meetup)


Link: Baauer Interview + SamplePack + 26-minute documentary from Red Bull Media House about Baauer’s sound travels | Ableton

 

https://www.ableton.com/en/blog/baauer-searching-for-sound-samples/

 Music has existed for thousands of years. The variety of sounds, instruments and music cultures around the world is staggering in it’s diversity, yet often, we tend to stick to what we know. There’s something to be said for shaking off your habits and looking beyond the familiar; the world is teeming with sounds that will change your perspective and expand your creative horizons.

It’s this sort of thinking that spurred Baauer to embark on a global adventure in search of fresh sounds to fuel his new album. Looking for a new direction in the wake of the “Harlem Shake” phenomenon, Harry Rodrigues traveled with production partner Nick Hook from the deserts beyond Dubai to the volcanoes of Japan, recording quirky sounds and ancient musical traditions to bend into raw materials to use in the studio. Lucky for us they’ve handed over the full set of samples, giving you the chance to add a new edge to your musical palette and maybe even broaden your vision of sound itself.

What makes this sample pack so cool is the narrative behind it all. Below you can watch the 26-minute documentary from Red Bull Media House about Baauer’s sound travels, download the pack and read our interview with Harry about the recording experience, how he’s manipulating the sounds and his reasons for giving away this sonic treasure trove.

Here is the video Searching for Sound https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TmF6yJRIs3E.

 More on this documentary here http://baauer.redbull.com/.

via www.ableton.com