November 2, 2015
I often make more than one track in a day, sometimes they are exploring different apps or different approaches. But often I think they must reflect my mood because they end up in the same place, or at least feeling like they belong together.
Todays post (Day 67) was a very minimal ambient piece made entirely with one patch in one synth and just played. Very much as I might play a guitar, no switching apps or collaging, just two notes interacting.
Which brings me to a thing that I have been musing about.
How much or how little is needed for a track? How simple can it be? How do we tell when something is finished? When it doesn’t need any more? Would spending more time on these things improve them? Is perfection necessary or just annoying and counter productive? Perhaps these are two different states of being?
These are some of the questions that I am probing with my ‘Year Of Posting’. But as yet I have no answers.
Your comments and ideas would be appreciated.
As an example I include a playlist of all yesterdays tracks. The first three are all made with one patch in CubeSynth and definitely belong together as minimalist pieces. The fourth went through a more complicated journey; CrystalSynthXT, Dedalus, FLUX:FX, TwistedWave, and Borderlands Granular (more like my usual mode of working though without the trip to Auria for collaging), and yet somehow it feels like it belongs here.
Anyway Peace out peeps.
November 1, 2015
A very minimal Ambient piece today.
A bass patch with overtones of Steel Drum or Hang Drum perhaps, that I made in CubeSynth. It seemed to call for slow minimal treatment so here is a jam using just two notes a whole tone apart, occasionally switching the octave.
One synth, one patch, two notes.
Sometimes you don’t need a lot.
October 31, 2015
A Beatscape with vocals.
I made a beat with Xenon a few weeks ago and left it. Today I revisited it and slowed it down in TwistedWave 🙂 Then I ran it through most of the effect apps I own, really just experimenting. In the end I used three different versions with Korvpressor, Flying Haggis, Master FX, and FLUX:FX. I loaded these into Auria and mixed them together adjusting volume and panning.
It was okay, but to be honest I felt I’d wasted a couple of hours.
I had a look through my Beats folder, the place I put interesting sounding drumbeats that I might use later, and found two that I liked and slowed them down. I decided to jam all three beats together regardless of their tempos etc and see what happens. So into Auria they went and I cut them up and arranged them as suited me.
I wrote some words on the theme ‘disjointed’ and gave them to iSpeech TTS which I loaded into AudioShare and applied some AUFX:Space and slowed it down, then added it to Auria and cut it up etc.
Finally I loaded Fieldscaper into a track in Auria and recorded some soundscape type background. Twice.
October 22, 2015
Perspective: A Drama In Three Parts:
Each track I make is a journey; there are usually twists and turns (often wrong turns), there are decisions made, decisions rescinded, backflips, and surprises. I never know when I start where I’m going to end up.
Sometimes the result is close to the initial idea or intention. Sometimes the work takes on a life of it’s own and I have to hold on for dear life while it works itself out. Often I have nothing in mind, but just begin and try to keep myself alert for the possibilities and signs of life that unfold.
I am anthropomorphising I know. So be it.
The creative process does seem to be out of my control; but I’m too much an atheist to attribute it to spirits, or muses, or being receptive to some god or other. Perhaps it’s something to do with Freud’s Subconscious, or Jung’s Collective Subconscious, or perhaps I’m being all Zen, or attuning myself to the Tao. Whatever. Take your pick, or use your own metaphor. It’s great fun! It’s the stuff of life!
Anyway…takes a breath…
Todays track had three way stations on it’s journey, three moments of clarity, almost like shrines along a pilgrimage: one near the beginning, one in the middle, and one at the end. As it should be I suppose.
If you so choose, come journey with me.
Part One is the original Beatscape that started it all.
Part Two is how I clothed the Beatscape but with the Beatscape removed.
Part Three is the resolution, the arrival, the conclusion.
Cube Synth, Patterning, iFretless Bass, Dedalus, Emo Chorus.
October 21, 2015
Nigel Seemingly Remote:
Nigel began the day dressed in iSem, still slow at 60 bpm, a bass pad patch in which I occasionally switched the arpeggiator on and off; recorded in AudioShare with Dedalus, AUFX:Space, and AUFX:Dub. I then added two patches from TF7 (recorded in the same way) which I panned left and right when I put them all into Auria. Next I added two bass drones, on the tonic note, from Cube Synth; in both of which I slightly changed parameters and added an octave occasionally.
October 20, 2015
Give Me All Your Money:
I don’t know how to categorise this. Is it genre able?
I did a jam in Alchemy, just using some presets, I don’t really know how to use Alchemy, but it has some great sounds (yet another app that I need to learn). Then I added AUFX:Space and AUFX:Dub, looped it, and jammed while turning Dub on and off, and playing with the frequency slider.
Next I loaded both into Auria and used the unaffected version as an intro and outro. Then I added one of yesterdays Granular Borderlands files and cut it up and distributed it around the track.
Now I felt it needed some words or vocals so I called upon the British Female voice in iSpeech TTS. I composed a little lyric/poem/rap for her, slowed it down by 80% in TwistedWave, and added some AUFX:Space and Dub. I used both the effected and the straight versions, and again cut up and distributed them about the track to make the composition.
October 18, 2015
Sunday Is To Blame:
Todays track is actually a playlist of 5 tracks; it wasn’t intentional, things just sort of happened that way.
They are on the Soundscape and Noisescape side of things.
This took all day and involved a lot of going backwards and forwards between apps and ideas before it took shape, so it is difficult to track the exact movement of things. Therefore I’m just going to list the apps I used today: AudioShare, Auria, TwistedWave, Borderlands Granular, Dedalus, Bias FX, Flux:FX, Cyclop, iMS20, Addictive Synth, Patterning, Sector, AUFX:Dub, AUFX:Space, Caramel, AltiSpace, MobileConv, Emo Chorus, iFretless Bass, PhaseRings, ThumbJam, ApeDelay.
Phew. Now I need a lie down.
October 17, 2015
October 15, 2015
An Ambient Soundscape.
Back to the Fugue Machine Project.
Today I have my sequence controlling several Synths that I loaded into AudioBus.
Korgs iPolySix, FM4, TF7, Laplace, Addictive Synth, Thor, and iSem all loaded into Mimex and recorded with AudioShare.
With a setup like this I can really sculpt the sound of the performance by blending synths in and out, muting, changing the pan etc.
This was a sort of proof of concept today. I plan to spend more time selecting and writing patches to really make this a polished performance piece.
October 14, 2015
Beating Against The Cliffs:
Today a short break from my Fugue Machine Project, that is still progressing, but I’m working on a number of things at a time.
So this is a track that began in AnalogKit with a Drum Sequencer made by the very talented Clif Johnston of Apptronica Labs.
Check out his projects in the Swap Meet if you have AnalogKit.
Also check out his music at mood481; and indeed have a look at the Apptronica label http://apptronica.co.uk/artists for a look at some of the best iPad and iPhone musicians on the planet.
After recording a jam into AudioShare, I selected the best bit (the last third), and transferred that into Auria where I added some files from Hexaglypics, did some chopping and arranging and voila!