Some additional experimentation on live-playing instruments on my tablet (this one is done in Chordion).
I have to say, when it comes to playing things live, I’m definitely of mixed minds about it, and even more so when I’m working with melody. When I’m working on live manipulation of a weird soundscape, for instance, that live random element is almost part of the fun, to see what unpredictable thing might happen. With a melody, though, it’s a different story, especially since I’m not the kind of person who can jump in and improvise something while guaranteeing that I won’t hit an off note – and if I was going to practice and play something over and over again until I got it perfect, why not just take the extra step and program it directly into my DAW where it can be as precise as I want it? While I’m not sure it results in absolute perfection each time, for me the fun of improvising something is to just go with the music while keeping it reasonably listenable. At the same time, though, when I’m playing it back and hear something jarring, or even if not then at least something I didn’t intend or didn’t really want it to sound like, it can infuriate me to no end. And yet, I keep trying to improvise and play unusual things live, so…
I played several different approaches with Chordion, but this was the only track I really got into:
Kelvin (Chordion Test)
Step 1: Take the glass top to a corningware dish and spin it upside-down on a tile countertop.
Step 2: Record the oscillating glass noise.
Step 3: Experiment with the clip using various forms of granular synthesis, gating, extreme filter and delay warping, hyper-driven amps, and other fun stuff.
Step 4: Wobble Grind (Maximal) Wobble Grind (Minimal)
Oh yeah, warning: there’s a reason this one’s tagged “earbleed.” Some of the extreme driving produced some unusual side effects that are very shrill in pitch, so you may want to carefully moderate your volume when listening (or listen to the “minimal” version on the right, which has less of the especially hard programming).
A few sound clips I conjured up while teaching myself The Mangle. Might be useful for something…
Mangle Test 1
Mangle Test 2
Mangle Test 3
This track is somewhat similar in composition method to Fourscore, and was created in an attempt to make a musical “card” for Mother’s Day. In a similar vein, the phrase “Happy Mother’s Day!” was entered into the DAW’s piano roll, in a font style similar to a 7-pin dot matrix display. The sequence is then looped and used with several different instruments, primarily a selection of sounds from the Sculpture physical modeling synth (some processed through the Space Designer reverb) and a custom arpeggiated sequence that I created in NLogPoly. The track is backed with a few drum loops and samples from Logic Pro. It is a little towards the atonal and discordant side, but has a punchy and direct sound that is definitely growing on me.
An ambient experiment involving several different sound sources, including time-stretched samples of city and construction noise alongside several different temporally varied versions of a field recording I did of walking around in a rainstorm with a creaky umbrella. It also features some Logic loops to complement the sound and the grinding, serendipitous feedback glitching that resulted in some of the samples as part of the stretching process. There are also some custom-tuned reaktor sound generators and several drum loops processed through ringshifters and granular synthesis. The result of all this? Well, it’s a sort of ambient/illbient weird thing that I guess could be somewhat relaxing (well, once you get through the grinding feedback-laden introduction, at any rate).
Something from the archives that I came across recently. More noodling around in ColorMusic, I suspect, although I have no idea what the source image for this one was…
Some more Isle of Tune experimentation here, although this time the focus is much more on how altering, reversing, and shifting the sequence of notes creates interesting new interactions between the various melodies “played” by each of the individual sequencers.
And, just for fun, I created some effectized versions that make the sequence sound a bit more dynamic and interesting (or at least trancegated):
More of my continuing sequence-shifting music experiments in Isle of Tune. Featuring an interesting shifting melody and some bizarrely incongruous sound effects.
What is Wub Scub? I have no idea. I guess it’s the sound I make when I attempt to vocally imitate dubstep. I do not have a very high regard of the dubstep genre generally. Therefore, the following demo is obviously not dubstep; rather, it is fairly traditional dark-ish driving techno, featuring a custom-programmed “wobble bass” that is admittedly a hallmark of the dubstep genre. (Really, it’s not that hard to do – all it is in this case is a custom-tweaked FM bass with high harmonics, with some drive and distortion, pumped through an LFO-linked filter with programmed variable frequency). The full demo also includes some bitcrushed samples and other fun stuff. The main bass is a custom patch for EFM1, processed by CamelCrusher and modulated by Logic AutoFilter. Samples and drums are stock logic loops.
I also created a couple of more “minimal” arrangements if you’d rather focus more on the bass sound:
And, just for fun, here’s what it sounds like when cranked (maniacally) up to 140BPM:
Oh, and as an extra added bonus, here’s a track of me running just the bass loop while playing the “wobble” live for around four minutes or so. The track, to me, seems just about on the edge of unlistenable, but then again, people listen to actual dubstep and seem to enjoy it, so who knows…
(Although, to be fair, *actual* dubstep sounds more like this)