Eric and I are slowly sorting through our collection to find candidates for the next album. I’ll post a couple of mine for right now because I haven’t gotten to remixing Eric’s mixes, as he only has Garageband and the mp3s sound kind of fizzy when processed by it. As always, it’s just Eric on bass and me on guitar and laptop. No overdubs, all live. First up is “cutter” — the mix of the day with a lead in the middle that sounds to me like very acidy Beatles. “Sizzle” is a bomping one-note workout. The hosebeast, one of arcDev‘s creations turned all into a single note with lots of different tones. But its a great note. “Cubanecho” vaguely recalls exile-era Stones trying to play a Latin groove from the bottom of a swimming pool. Ksshuck emulates ZZ top playing disco with a whomping bass drum…watch yr woofers. As always, leave comments if you listen…we’d love to hear from you.
Another plugin maker who makes cool music is Skye Klein from Australia, who plays under the moniker of Terminal Sound System along with a bunch of other projects. His music, in TSS anyway, is dubby, minimalist, occasionally bordering on ambient but at other times moving towards industrial glitching. His latest album is Compressor, and another, Constructing Towers, is due out soon You can hear the latest music at the TSS site. His older stuff is all downloadable from Embryo Records. Among my favorites from the old stuff are minimal tolerance to injected errata, deep trauma, and tomorrow will not come, though I have not really listened to the whole catalogue yet.
His plugin and software site is arcDev Noise Industries, which has a frustratingly cool web interface that evokes some alien version of DOS or the ancient gopher net protocol. Type ‘help’ if you can’t figure it out.
I use two of his plugins a lot. The first is the aptly named hosebeast, which you can hear in action on rreplay‘s sizzle. Hosebeast is a “5-part fx processor for noisy, lofi, glitchy and general audio mayhem” with a filter, granulator, warper, bitcrusher, and ring modulator in any combination, including multiples of the same. In other words a FSU device.
The other great arcDev plugin is arcDev’s entry in the 2007 KVR Developers’ Challenge plugin contest, Ellipsis. It, along with mdsp‘s livecut, which I’ll discuss in its own post some time, are responsible for the drums in cubanecho and f it from rreplay. Cubanecho also relies on mdsp’s entry in the 2006 KVR Developers’ Challenge, fire. If you take a guitar and set it standing up with the strings against a tabletop, then pull it away a little and let go, then the strings will bounce on the edge of the tabletop ever more rapidly, just so: Booooooooing Booooing Boooing Boing Bng Bn bn bnbnbnbnbn (I take no responsibility for any damage to guitars or furniture this may cause). Mdsp has figured out how to mathematically model that warping speed change using delays in fire.
The way Ellipsis works is that you load ten samples into it, most usefully, drum loops that will more or less go together. You have to tweak the settings a bit to make the drums play at the right (or wrong!) speed. Then when you hit a corresponding note on your midi controller (usually a keyboard, but I use a footboard), it triggers the loop. You can set it for any BPM and it will speed up or slow down your loop accordingly, or sync it to your plugin host. If you only like the last half or the first quarter of the loop, you can play just that, or play it in reverse. One useful way to set it is to put the same drum loop in several times and play different portions of it frontwards or backwards to give some variation to the drums.
So that’s it for today. I couldn’t find any of mdsp’s music to play for you, but I hope you enjoy rreplay and Terminal Sound System.