Photos from Modular Synth Lightning Patch Walkthroughs at the Rocky Mountain Synthesizer Meetup

March 2017 Meetup Slides v2

Last Wednesday I hosted the 55th Rocky Mountain Synthesizer Meetup. The meetup now has over 550+ members! This meetup featured the return of a popular theme from 2016, Modular Synth Lightning Patch Walkthroughs.

Here is the format.

Prepare a modular patch prior to the event. 3 days prior to the vent, send me up to 5 photos or screen shots of your patch which I will projected on the big screen night of the event. Bring you modular synth. Provide 1/4″ stereo outs which will patch into a sub-mixer that runs to the PA. You’ll get a mic, a laser pointer, and 6 minutes to talk about your patch. During mingling time, hang out and show people your patches and rigs.

The meetup was well attended and there were some inspiring rigs and patches. Also I performed with the Carbon Dioxide Ensemble. A bit thanks to all those show presented and attended!

Here are some photo highlights.

Want to see more? There are over 50 photos on meetup.com from this event. Check out the photos here.

 

Theremin and Synthesizer Halloween Concerts in Denver

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Halloween Shows

After nearly a year break from solo performances, I have two shows coming up this weekend with thereminist Victoria Lundy. If you are in Denver or will be coming through Denver stop by. Details below.

Teaser Video

To support these shows I’ve spent quite a bit of time re-working my live performance and collaboration rig and workflow to support real-time synthesis on both the sound/music side and the visuals side of things. I’ll do some posts on this soon. For now checkout a teaser video for the upcoming shows made from footage from October 12th Rocky Mountain Synthesizer Meetup on The Sound of 50’s SciFi: Theremins and Circuits.

Friday Oct 28th, 3-5pm: Denver Central Library Trick or Treat Street

We’ll be performing as part of the Denver Central Library Trick or Treat Street. We’ll have a real-time camera on the passerbys to add spooky effects to their image.

More info here – https://kids.denverlibrary.org/blog/halloween-trick-or-treat-street-central-library.

Here is a map. You can park on the street at 2 hour meters, or at the Civic Center parking facility located south of the DPL and just east of the Denver Art Museum.

Sunday Oct 30th, 7-10pm: Textures Ambient Showcase, Mutiny Information Cafe, Denver

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On the 30th we’ll be performing at Textures Ambient Showcase along with Winter Twig.Here is a map. Parking on the streets.

Modulate This! Turns 11

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Modulate This! turns 11 today – WOOT!

In celebration of a decade of blogging and to position the site for the future, I’ve changed the look and moved to new platform and host. If you want to follow along in email opt-in using the form below and/or use this RSS feed.

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Divergence

Modulate This! has always had a synth tech and technique slant with industry trends sprinkled in. The earlier articles reflected the emergence of laptops for live performance, the divergence of buying a shit ton of VSTs and gear, and the rise of “controllerism”.

Note – When trying to decide what photo create for this post I started thinking back about all the gear I’ve used over the past decade. Then it struck me that the only two instruments that survive in my rig that I had when I started of the blog in 2005 are Ableton Live (which I started using in 2003) and Absynth (which I started using in 2002 and it is still my go to virtual synth). Something old, something new… Push 2.

Along the way I made quite a few “how-to” video tutorials on my companion YouTube channel (which has just over a million views) and also documented a lot of my research on my public Mindmeister mindmap channel (featuring the “Elektron Octatrack Video Tutorial Index” with over 30K views; and the “What’s New in Ableton Live 9” and “U-HE DIVA Synthesizer: OSC & Filter Anatomy” maps each with over 15K Views).

Convergence

In the last few years, the blog has reflected my convergence down to a smaller set of instruments with a focus on mastery. This often resulted in longer deeper reads.

What’s Next for Modulate This!

A renewed focus on Synth Tech & Technique and Demystifying Synths and Inspiring Your Inner Sound Designer

This means a continued focus on articles and videos on synth tech & technique. So more articles to help you on your sound design journey whether you are and up and coming sound designer, a seasoned expert, or an artist who wants to boost your sound design chops to help you create more unique sound and music.

Covering the Denver / Boulder Scene

I’m also fortunate to be on the ground in the Denver & Boulder area where the electronic and experimental music scene has experienced incredible growth – so watch for posts on this. In a related note, the Rocky Mountain Synthesizer Meetup which I founded 4 years ago just crossed 530+ members! If you are ever in the Denver area 2nd Wednesdays on even numbered months – come on by.

Drawing Inspiration from Lateral Art & Artists

Speaking of Denver & Boulder, there are some amazing museums here. Consuming these lateral forms of art and learning about artist process has informed and transformed me – so I’d like to share some ideas on this as well in the future.

Nature, Travel, & Being in the Field

In the last few years I’ve stepped up my field audio/video recording work both in natural settings and when I’ve had the good fortune to travel. I’ll pass on some thoughts on gear and process.

Sharing Inspiring Work from Sci Fi and Horror

So many Sci Fi and Horror films depend on electronic and experimental music for sound effects and score. I’m a geek about this and want to talk about this more.

Sharing Inspiring Work from My Synth Friends

One of the best parts about publishing Modulate This! is it has allowed me to meet amazing artists all around the world – many of whom I’ve gotten to meet face-to-face – many of whom have become good friends. I draw so much inspiration from my synth friends and will continue to spread the word about releases and shows.

Thanks for Reading!!!

I’ll close by saying thanks to all of you for reading and supporting Modulate This!

Your synth geek friend,

Mark Mosher
ModulateThis.com

Listen to “Falling” Sound Design Experiment with Live 9 + Max for Live Convolution Reverb Pro Using IR Made with Pitch-to-MIDI Absynth Patch

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I was experimenting with Live 9’s new pitch-to-MIDI and Max for Live Convolution Reverb Pro a few days back and come up with this idea.

 

 

Here is the process I followed.

  1. I started with a vocal sample by the wonderful artist Snowflake (CC-BY-NC faccmixter.org/files/snowflake/37827). BTW I remixed one of her tracks last year – click here to give it a listen.
  2. Use “Convert Melody to New MIDI Track” to convert her Melody to MIDI. This creates a new MIDI track with an Ableton instrument.
  3. Swap the Ableton instrument on the MIDI track with Absynth 5.  You could of course stick with Ableton instruments here. I used a dissonant bell preset with major reverb decay.
  4. Create an audio clip from the Absynth patch. You could resample it or  freeze the track,  insert a new audio track and drag the frozen clip to the new audio track to create an audioclip.
  5. Insert the Max for Live Convolution Reverb Pro on the original vocal track.
  6. Apply the Absynth sample as the Impulse Response file for the Convolution Reverb by dragging the audio clip from step #4 and dropping it I on the waveform display of the Max for Live device.
  7. Play the original sample through the Convolution Reverb

What’s great about this process is since the Impulse Response was derived from pitch-to-MIDI of the original sample, the resultant reverb follows the phrasing of the original vocal track – but of course is also slewed and torqued in an organic way by using the Absynth patch with more sustain and bigger reverb and space. I also love how this creates new harmonics.

I also want to point out that while each of these discrete processes are available in separate tools already, having this all integrated in Live 9 with Max for Live makes for a rapid and creative sound design workflow. It’s taken me way longer to explain it her than id did to think this up and execute the idea (which only took about 5 minutes).

It’s also worth mentioning you don’t need to be a programmer to use Max for Live as an artist. Just drag in the devices that come with Max for Live essentials and use them like any native live device.

Links:

Mark Mosher
Synthesist, Composer, Performer
Boulder, CO
Artist Site & Album Downloads: www.markmoshermusic.com