Journey with Elektron Analog Four Continues + $100 Rebate on Analog Four MKII or Analog Rytm MKII Through September 30th

I just spent an intense month going deeper with the Analog Four MKI to get ready for a recent Rocky Mountain Synthesizer Meetup presentation and performance I did with Brian Horsfeld (a.k.a. The Aefonic). He owns A MKII so I got to spend time checking it out as well.

The larger size, OLED screen, more dedicated and the back-lit buttons really improve the workflow on the MKII and give you better perspective on the state of the machine. Check out Cuckoo”s video on what’s new.

I was already pretty handy with the A4 but prepping for this meet up really took me to the next level and I have to say I consider this a real desert island since for me now. One thing that surprised me is how often I use it for drum sounds.

If you’re in the market for an Analog Four MKII and Analog Rytm MKII now is a good time to buy as they have $100 rebate which lasts till September 30.

Celebrate Analog!

The rich, captivating sound of a powerful analog synthesizer or drum machine has to be heard to be believed.

The Analog Four MKII and Analog Rytm MKII are our two proud flagship instruments. Superb analog sound, great digital control, precision, storage and programming. Simply put, the best of both worlds – analog and digital – brought to perfection with the new MKII versions.

For a limited time only, you’ll get an instant rebate when you buy an Analog Four MKII or Analog Rytm MKII ($100 or local equivalent)

This offer is valid through 30th September 2018 from Elektron.se (the instant rebate will be automatically included when the product is added to the cart) or from [participating] retailers.

Madelife Beat Cypher Now a Recurring Concert Series + Video From My Set with Analog Four

madelife-beat-cypher-poster

Madelife,  a creative accelerator in Boulder and frequent host venue for the Rocky Mountain Synthesizer Meetup, started hosting a very cool electronic music concert series late in 2017 called Beat Cypher. Each performer gets a 10-minute slot and signs up first come first serve. It’s Rapid-fire fun for performers and listeners!

It’s now a recurring event happening the fourth Thursday of each month. I’ll be heading down tonight to do a set using only my Elektron Octatrack.

Next event: Thursday January 25th
Time: 7:30 0 10:00 PM
Facebook Event:
https://www.facebook.com/events/1775998849375387/
Location: 2000 21st Street, Boulder, CO 80302 | Map

How it Works

Come down to madelife for an evening of music and friends! ALL STYLES WELCOME. The madelife Beat Cypher is all about bringing local music producers/performers together to share their talent with each other and the community.

THE RULES:
1. Bring a portable setup for live performance. There will be plenty of table space and power.
2. There is a sign-up sheet (FIRST COME FIRST SERVE). Each person get’s a 10-minute slot.

Join the madelife Beat Cypher Group (http://bit.ly/2mPG59d) for photo/video uploads, Beat Cypher News, and updates!

Video from My Last Performance Using Only Elektron Analog Four

Here is a 7 minute performance from madelife Beat Cypher #2.Audio is from GoPro. Beat Cypher is kind of like an open mic with micro-sets which necessitates small rigs and groove boxes. It’s super fun.

 

 

I challenged myself to do my set with just an Elektron Analog Four. The Analog Four has 4 analog synths, is only 4 note polyphonic in total and has chorus, delay and reverb on the master chain.

The performance is a combination of original presets, tweaked factory presets, live playing using the onboard chromatic keyboard, real-time sound design, use of some pre-defined original sequences with live arrangement and live sequencing. I’m using 4 kits” throughout (which you can switch to with no load-time or hickups). So all synthesis, no samples, no audio playback.

  • 00:00 Real-time synthesis with original preset
  • 00:34 Live arrangement with grooves, live-sound design, live play on chromatic keyboard
  • 4:00 Back to real-time synthesis using chromatic keyboard
  • 05:00 Things get pretty Logan’s Run bleepy and modular-like
  • 06:25 Freeze with the amazing on-board reverb

Synth Journal: The Return of the Elektron Analog Four

return-of-analog-four-mm

Back in August I picked up an Anlog Four MKI as Sweetwater was closing the MKI out. I really kicked myself when I didn’t get a new Monomachine when they closed them out. I actually had an Analog Four way back in 2013 when they were first introduced but sold it to focus on my love affair with the Octatrack. Anyway – I decided to go on the Analog Four “ride” again as with all the OS updates and Overbridge it’s like a whole new animal.

Back in August I only had time to mess about a bit and wrote the post First Impressions Using Elektron Overbridge on Surface Pro 4 with Analog Four and published this video.

After a little stall out – I’m back at it with the Analog Four and have been working on:

  1. An original long-form Krell improv piece using only the Analog Four using custom presets for a performance in 2018.
  2. Doing tests to use Analog Four as an audio interface for Ableton Live.
  3. Studio sessions to practice sound design as performance from init. No overbridge here so I could really gain some muscle memory for the box so I could use it effectively in free-form improv situations.
  4. Spending time wrapping my head around the best way us Analog Four as a composition platform – or companion for the Octatrack. These sessions are both with and without Overbridge.
  5. Spending time wrapping my head around data management and backup.
  6. Using the Analog Four as a live performance synth with USB MIDI Controllers using Kenton MIDI USB Host MKII.

Long story short – I’ve learned a lot and taken a lot of notes. Watch for future posts with on all this on the category https://modulatethis.com/category/elektron-analog-four.

Oh, and in case you missed it, Elektron has decided to…

…offer Overbridge free of charge for all our Overbridge enabled instruments. This means that Overbridge Basic and Premium are now simply Overbridge https://www.elektronauts.com/news/387.

Mark Mosher
Composer, Synthesist, Electronic Musician, Multimedia Artist
Boulder, CO
MarkMosherMusic.com
ModulateThis.com

 

 

 

First Impressions Using Elektron Overbridge on Surface Pro 4 with Analog Four

elektron-analog-four-overbridge-surface-pro4-4

I owned an Analog Four 4 years back and ended up selling it. This was way before features like polyphony and Elektron Overbridge were added. I got interested in the A4 again to pair with my coveted Octatrack for a quick setup fly rig. To make a long story short, the Analog Four MKI is back in the lineup and I’m dusting off my chops and exploring the features new to me. In this post I’ll offer short video then some first impressions after my initial session using the touch screen on a Surface Pro 4 running Windows 10 to improvise (one virtual knob per-function) on the Analog 4 using the pen and multitouch. Overbridge is running as a VST in Ableton Live.

In a related note, I’ll be doing my first performance with the Analog Four at Freq Boutique in Denver on Monday August 14th. Nothing like jumping back in the deep end :^)

Video

In this video, I’m triggering notes using the Analog Four’s built-in keyboard and then manipulating they synth engine parameters using the Surface Pro 4. The Analog Four is sitting at an angle on a Cremacaffè SPIKE tabletop synth stand and the Surface Pro 4 is at a matching angle on its kickstand at a matching angle with keyboard detached. Caution – I’m hammering out seriously gnarly Andromeda Strain noise with this little session – haha. 

 

First Impressions

  • Synchronization between A4 and Overbridge – Selecting tracks on the hardware selects corresponding pages on Overbridge. Parameter sync seems snappy and smooth.
  • Overbridge virtual knob response – the throw of knobs and sliders with your fingers and the pen works well for both fine and larger adjustments.
  • Multi-touch support – Yes you can control multiple parameters at the same time with multiple finger.
  • GUI & User Experience – Working with Overbridge is shortening my sound design learning curve as  the GUI exposes the anatomy and signal flow in a clear way. Cheers to Elektron for such a great looking interface. I LOVE graphics in the delay section!
  • Stability for live performance use –  Seems good. The combination of Surface Pro 4 + Overbridge definitely makes the Analog Four an even more compelling solution for expressive live performance doing sound design on-the-fly. I will still commit to gaining muscle memory using only the hardware – but I plan on using Overbridge + Surface Pro 4 live in some of improvisational ensembles  such as (no)poem and The Denver Synth_Drone Collective where sound design as performance is the name of the game.
  • Sound Design Use – Sound design is faster using Overbridge. I can see using it to build up a library of custom sounds, then taking on the road with just the hardware.
  • Ableton Link – When using the Overbridge VST, ABleton is the master clock and therefore the Surface Pro 4 could be used to sync the Analog Four’s clock in a Link jam.