KRUI Noise Radio 2013-03-30

More specifically Techno & House than usual. Featuring new Shawn Rudiman on Detroit Techno Mlitia, new Cephax Acid Crew album Cro Magnox, Kommon+Appleblim, Trus’ Me, and things found trawling through my ITunes collection…

[audio:http://cornwarning.com/chaircrusher/Chaircrusher-20130330-KRUINoiseRadio.mp3|titles=KRUI Noise Radio 2013-03-30 Noise Radio|artists=Chaircrusher]http://cornwarning.com/chaircrusher/Chaircrusher-20130330-KRUINoiseRadio.mp3
Kommon+AppleblimSilencio
AnikaIn The City
Trus’ MeMe Tes une Pute
Felix LenferinkFirst Bouree
Trus’ MeHindsight
Shawn RudimanGhola Idaho
Space Dimension ControllerMercurial Attraction
Thomas BrinkmanXenia 2
Kerri ChandlerSo It Begins Again (DC10 Mix)
KWide Road
Analog Cop & BlawanSickle
Jeff Samuelheb gbz
VersionThe Brighter Side (Percussive Vocal Mix)
La Funk MobRavers Suck Our Sound (Carl Craig Mix)
Jon MarguliesGood Religion (Dub Mix)
Touch Sensitve & Annie LunoeReal Talk
DJ 3000Sasanian Stomp
JethroAin’t No Way
Raw Series #2B
EstroeCheapo Cheapa
CalmacTangerine (Jozo & Can Dub Remix)
TouaneTolousian Duck
Mike DunnLet It Be House
Kommon & AppleblimGas Jam
Shawn RudimanBlinded By The Future
DeadbeatWolves & Angels
Shawn RudimanThe Last Snow
Kerr KnollDrone Avionix
The Black DogTrain By The Autobahn (Robert Hood Remix)
Ceephax Acid CrewFlight Of The Condor

In which SoundCloud sends me a hilarious takedown notice

Anand and SchatarSo today I got this interesting message from Soundcloud:

Hi chaircrusher,

Our automatic content protection system has detected that your sound “Rubber Duckie (Wub Machine Remix)” may contain the following copyright content: “Get Some Fruit (Wubstep Dubstep Remix)” by Anand Bhatt, owned by Favorecido Productions. As a result, its publication on your profile has been blocked.

You can dispute this report, if you believe the copyright content has been mistakenly identified or if you have obtained all the necessary rights, licenses and/or permissions to upload and share this material on SoundCloud.

Please do so by filling out our dispute webform at the following link:https://soundcloud.com/settings/disputes/6512879

If you would like to learn more about copyright, please visit our copyright information page.

Thanks,

The SoundCloud Copyright Team

FYI I didn’t even remember uploading it to Soundcloud — it was just a joke that took about 5 minutes to put together. I kind of love how it turned out, since Sesame Street is embedded in my DNA. If you need to hear it:

[audio:http://www.cornwarning.com/xfer/RubberDucky-WubMachine.mp3|titles=Rubber Ducky Wub Machine Remix|artists=chaircrusher] http://www.cornwarning.com/xfer/RubberDucky-WubMachine.mp3

There are several things that are awesome about this:

  • Soundcloud’s automated copyright infringement detector did NOT detect my actual ‘infringement,’ which was against Jeff Moss and Jim Henson, who wrote and performed the original Rubber Duckie.   I claim this is fair use, but I’m not going to the wall on that; this was a JOKE track, it isn’t worth it.
  • Soundcloud’s audio fingerprint software did detect that there was some common source material in the Rubber Duckie Wubstep remix and that track by Anand Bhatt. That common material is there because Bhatt and I did the same thing: Took an audio file and fed it to the Wub Machine, which is a neat hack that ‘converts’ any audio file into bad dubstep.  Feed the Wub Machine random songs, traffic noises, outgoing voicemail messages yadda yadda, and hey presto! Bad dubstep! it’s hours (well, minutes) of fun.
  • The most hilarious part of this debacle?  This guy Anand Bhatt has released a digital EP which you can buy here on Amazon.  Bhatt took what sounds like random crappy songs, ran them through the Wub Machine and released them as his own original ‘remixes’!

What conclusions can I draw from this?

  • Soundcloud’s audio fingerprint software is able to detect common elements in two songs.  That’s great, but it can’t distinguish between one song sampling another, and two songs containing common source material.  So it’s going to generate thousands of false positives.  I guarantee that the worst-paid people at Soundcloud are the poor shmoes who have to wade through all the people contesting false positives for copyright infringement.
  • Anand Bhatt is a complete tosser.  Don’t believe me?  Visit his mega-awesome website, or his Amazon Store.  All those pictures at the Grammies are curiously absent of any other people, as though he snuck in after hours to get his picture taken in front of the Grammy background.  This man has been spending his time inventing an imaginary international rockstar career.

Here’s the transcendent, timeless, original “Rubber Duckie”

Live @ PS One 2013-03-19

It was cold and snowy and there wasn’t much in the way of an audience, but I got to try out some new stuff. Starting about 14:00 I have a section that samples (well, granulates) Milk & Eggs aka Jordan Sellergren. It ultimately bears only the most tenuous relationship to the original music which is wonderful in my opinion.

I don’t get to play out that much — I’d like to do it more often — but the general framework of what I’m doing goes back a couple of years, so it’s time to tear it down and build up something new. Expect more chances for live mistakes and chaos.

[audio:http://www.cornwarning.com/chaircrusher/Chaircrusher-2013-03-19-LiveSet.mp3|titles=live at ps one 2012-03-19|artists=chaircrusher]
http://www.cornwarning.com/chaircrusher/Chaircrusher-2013-03-19-LiveSet.mp3

KRUI Noise Radio 2013-03-02

So it’s been a bit since I did a radio show, so I have a backlog of new stuff to work through. New Burial, Autechre, My Bloody Valentine, Alex Under, Ron Trent, Terrace, and of course Chaircrusher….

[audio:http://www.cornwarning.com/chaircrusher/Chaircrusher2013-03-02-KRUI-NoiseRadio.mp3|titles=2013-03-02 KRUI Noise Radio|artists=chaircrusher]http://www.cornwarning.com/chaircrusher/Chaircrusher2013-03-02-KRUI-NoiseRadio.mp3
My Bloody ValentineWho Sees You
AutechreBladelores
Alex UnderBola 7
Alex UnderBola 3
Ed McFarlaneShe Sleeps
Ros Sola6Sway
Sean DeasonOde To Detroit
Tevo HowardPump & Bounce
Tevo HowardYou Have A Way With Words
Micro WorldYour Techno Toy
Ron TrentKids At Play
Ron TrentExotic Drums
PerkowitzTime Lapse
TerraceOut of Time
MicroworldHappy Machines
Ros SolaSign Language Poetry
MicroworldSubterranean
Don FrothREflex (Shake Shakir Remix)
TerraceMekanika
Sean DeasonS4R4
Orphan101Baila Second Mix
Sean DeasonThe Nature Of Time
ChaircrusherIsthmus Strait Isthmus
Max 404How to Bluff Your Way Into Techno
StarkeyFantasy
StarkeyNucleus

My Bloody Valentine “M B V” Review.

OK, new MBV first reactions. The overall sound hasn’t changed much if at all. If I had made a record as epochal and evocative as Loveless, I guess I’d have problems finishing a follow-up. There are kids in their 20s who literally grew up listening to it. I know it was on heavy rotation in my car driving kids around, and my sons are 24 and 27.

Where it’s different? “New You” is pretty sunny and not as fuzzy as the usual MBV song; the focus is on Bilinda’s multitracked vocals. It points up the influence of 60s french singers like Jane Birkin and France Gall on Shields. The album almost sounds like a noisier Stereolab at times. The two bands were more or less contemporaries; Stereolab had french women vocalists who made that connection more explicit, but it’s a serious part of Shields’ stylistic vocabular.

“If I Am” bears close listening, because it’s maybe Shields most fully realized, appealing vocal melody. If anything has changed in 22 years, it’s that Shields has progressed as a songwriter, especially in the songs he wrote for Bilinda Butcher.

“Nothing Is” in my opinion should have been left a B side, and replaced with another pop song. It is a relentlessly repetitive loop that gets slightly louder and then ends. It would be fun to hear them play it live, but compared to the more fully composed songs it comes off as a piss take.

ValentineIf you’re at all a fan it’s worth tracking down the Tape Op interview where he describes his recording techniques. It’s easy listening to MBV to feel like there’s something complicated there, but once you know how simply he recorded the music it’s more impressive — there aren’t a whole bunch of overdubs — he spends time getting the sound he wants, and he might have 4 tracks of different microphones on a guitar cabinet, but compared to a Beyonce record they’re very simple and transparent.
Image stolen from Mojo Magazine without permission.

KRUI DJ Set 2012-12-08

The last show of the semester! Found some stuff downloadable on Soundcloud (Ekko, Delany Duvall), some recent-ish Terrence Dixon/Juju&Jordash/Sigha. Merry frikken Xmas!

http://www.cornwarning.com/chaircrusher/Chiarcrusher-2012-12-08-KRUI-DJSet.mp3http://www.cornwarning.com/chaircrusher/Chiarcrusher-2012-12-08-KRUI-DJSet.mp3
Ex Action ModelHeavy Shadow
ChaircrusherMichelle
Juju & JordashShakshuka Dub
EkkoPawnmover
Marc EvansCrescent Moon (Delany Duvall SpiritualSoul RMX)
Jason SnellCataclysm Sketch
Juju & JordashTrack David Would Play
Panda ValiumCopaiba
DubsheppardsThe Others (Ekko Remix)
Hakim MurphyInfinite Sensations
Murat TepeliUntitled
LegoweltSketches From Another Century
Flash MobNinety Five (Dirty Channels Remix)
LegoweltRenegade of a new age
Hakim MurphyBlack Robots Having Sex (Kieran Brereton’s Deep Mix)
LegoweltDanger In The Air
Hakim MurphyNikki Muscles
Nick HoeppnerSeaweed (Deadbeat Fireweed Mix)
Stephen BrownHorizontal
Dave BrubeckTake Five (Kieran Brereton’s Deep Mix)
Terrence DixonDark City of Hope
Aril BrikhaDefinition of D
Stephen BrownMini Mood
Aril BrikhaPeople Mover
Mayra AndredStoria (Delany Duvall Yoruba Remix)
VentressSilotar (Silent Servant Remix)
SighaAscension
Terrence DixonThe Switch
SighaShe Kills In Ecstasy
VentressTyphon
Terrence DixonThe Auto Factory
SighaDressing For Pleasure
British Murder BoysDead Sun
SighaFaith & Labour
ChaircrusherShwarma

2012-11-17 Chaircrusher DJ set.

So this was a vinyl mix, which means it isn’t as perfect with respect to mixing as my Ableton Live sets. It’s more fun, and scarier, actually, and track ordering is more spontaneous. I did a few level adjustments and cut out the skips at the end of Mercedes Boy, but other than that it’s what went out over air and the radio, including skips in the Depeche Mode track…

[audio:http://www.cornwarning.com/chaircrusher/2012-11-17-KRUI-DJ-Set.mp3|titles=2012-11-17 KRUI DJ set|artists=Chaircrusher]http://www.cornwarning.com/chaircrusher/2012-11-17-KRUI-DJ-Set.mp3
new orderperfect kiss
yazstate farm
depeche modeeverything counts
candi statonwhen you wake up tomorrow
YazSituation
ConfunkshunLady’s Wild
Patrice RushenWatch Out
PebblesMercede Boy Fack
Steve ‘Silk’ HurleyWork It Out
Off ShoreGot To Get Away
RisseLove Baby
Lil Louis & The WorldSaved My Life (Vintage Louis Down Under Mix)
DajaeTime
A Guy Called GeraldFX(Mayday Mix)
MoodymanI can’t kick this feeling when it hits
KLSmile
Shawn RudimanMartini Kiss
The MartianPow Wow (Fancy Dancer Mix)
PacouThe Trap
Kate Simko + Tevo HowardPolyrythmic The Original Theme Track
Pittsburgh Track AuthorityNite Owl Video
TR OneDrum Dance (John Heckle’s Jack Dance)
AnaxanderMoons of Jupiter
Space Dimension ControllerJourney To the Core of the Unknown Sphere (Kyle Hall I’m only breathing Mix)
Josh Wink + King BrittBrave Strong Song (Original Philly Mix)
Inner CityGood Live (Steve Silk Hurley Mix)

KRUI DJ Set – 2012/10/20

Rather than my usual grab bag of tracks, this mix focuses on just a few releases:


… which takes things several different directions: John Tejada’s melodic Techno (which echoes/gives homage to The Black Dog’s late-90s sound), Dub techno sounds from DeepChord and Dom DuMoulin, the post-everything bass music of Deadbeat, and the incredible Dubstep/Cuban mashup from Mala.

I showed up and KRUI was dark, and there was nothing coming out of the studio to go out on the air. So I started up early, which accounts for the 140+ minutes of this mix. During my set I got onto Facebook to announce it, and the last DJ had left themselves logged in. I left a snarky message on his wall (isn’t that required?) and a few minutes later, he called the studio to tell me that he was going to come down to the station every Saturday night at eight to punch me in the face. So I have that to look forward to!

[audio:http://www.cornwarning.com/chaircrusher/2010-10-20-Chaircrusher-KRUI-Show.mp3|titles=KRUI DJ Set 2012-10-20|artists=Chaircrusher]http://www.cornwarning.com/chaircrusher/2010-10-20-Chaircrusher-KRUI-Show.mp3
DFRNTIncubus
MalaComo
DFRNTSilent Witness
DFRNTPrism
DeadbeatYard
DFRNTSuspended In The Deep
John TejadaWhen All Around is Madness
DeadbeatHorns of Jericho
Dom DumoulinGone
DeepchordGliding
DeepchordAeronautica
DeepchordBeneteau
DeepchordAquatic
DeepchordAmber
DeepchordFourier
DeepchordCruising Towards Dawn
DeepchordSpring Mist
Dom DumoulinFields
John TejadaStabilizer
DFRNTThat’s Interesting
John TejadaThe Function And The Form
DFRNTEveryone is Moving
John TejadaOrbiter
DeepchordAlfama
Dom DumoulinFields (Bleupulp RMX)
DeadbeatWolves and Angels
DeadbeatPunta de Choros
DeadbeatLazy Jane Steppers Dub
DFRNTOur Little Secret
MalaTribal
MalaCuba Electronic
MalaChange
MalaThe Tunnel
MalaGhost
MalaMulata
MalaChanguito
MalaRevolution
MalaCurfew
MalaCalle F
MalaNoche Sueos
DFRNTCruise

Chaircrusher Live @ Gabe’s October 11th 2012

I had a fine time, though it would have been great if more people showed up — I mean I’m used to playing to mostly empty rooms, but we had guys in from out of town who hit a deer trying to get there. But hey, Thursday night at Gabe’s — hard to draw a lot of people. Anyway Moldover sounded great. I particularly liked the a cappela song he opened with, and his guitar playing, which always drove the songs and sounded great. Exaltron has evolved a unique approach to live performance, combining voice, trumpet and guitar, live looping, expertly programmed sampled drumming and crazy electronic messing about.

I was mostly happy about my set, which may have come from working myself into a tizzy for weeks getting read to play. Mostly new stuff done in the past couple months, some of it bespoke for the live set.

[audio:http://www.cornwarning.com/chaircrusher/2012-10-11-Chaircrusher-Live.mp3|titles=Chaircrusher Live @ Gabe’s 2012-10-11|artist=Chaircrusher] http://www.cornwarning.com/chaircrusher/2012-10-11-Chaircrusher-Live.mp3

Past Shock – Chaircrusher Live 1996

My friend David Talento was trying to organize his studio and found some cassettes I’d sent him in the 1990s. The real find was what may be the last remaining copy of tracks by Jason Welch, local rave promoter and sometime musician. But I’ll deal with that stuff later.

One of the other things is a recording of a live set I did in 1996 (I believe) at the Great Midwestern Ice Cream Company (what is now Moonrakers restaurant). In those days I pretty much dragged my whole studio out to play live — a Roland Jupiter 6, Casio CZ-1, Roland TR707, a home-made plywood rack of gear, a desktop computer and CRT.

I don’t even remember most of the stuff I played, or even how I played it — I suspect I was using Opcode Vision and a Turtle Beach Pinnacle card as a sampler. Vision had a facility something like Ableton Live’s clips — you could trigger chunks of midi sequences live. The beginning of the set sounds a bit like Drexciya. Anyway it isn’t bad, and interesting to hear it as a time capsule from 16 years ago.

[audio:http://www.cornwarning.com/chaircrusher/Chaircrusher-Live-1996.mp3|titles=Live @ Great Midwestern|artists=Chaircrusher]http://www.cornwarning.com/chaircrusher/Chaircrusher-Live-1996.mp3

Bonus, David put up a remix I did for him around this time on Bandcamp:

The Hallway Samples as an Ableton Live Pack!

I previously had posted about a couple of sample sets I made by banging on stuff in the basement hallway, (Hallway 1 and Hallway 2) but today I went through the steps to package them as an Ableton Live ALP file.

These are Sampler presets, so I don’t know if you can load them if you don’t have the Sampler License, or rather I don’t know what will happen if you try. But you can always use the original zip files and load the samples wherever you like. Just click through above to the original posts.

Ableton Live Hallway Live Pack

KRUI Radio DJ Set 2012-03-03

This mix was delayed in posting to the blog because…I forgot it. It reflects some of my recent obsessions, including the new Burial EP Kindred which seems to reflect my mood right now in ways I can’t explain. It also is a bit more tilted towards techno than my mixes have been recently, because there’s a lot of good techno coming out. There’s also a lot of stuff that is roughly house and/or techno but comes from producers who a few years ago were thought of as Dubstep artists. But as Peter Kirn pointed out, there’s Dubstep and there’s “Dubstep” and no one who’s serious about good music wants to have anything to do with the latter.

[audio:http://cornwarning.com/xfer/2012-03-03-Chaircrusher-KRUI-DJSet.mp3|titles=2013-03-03 Chaircrusher KRUI DJ Set|artists=Chaircrusher]http://cornwarning.com/xfer/2012-03-03-Chaircrusher-KRUI-DJSet.mp3
Tim HeckerNo Drums
SynkroQuestions
BurialKindred
BurialLoner
BurialAshtray Wasp
ItalHive Mind
ItalFirst Wave
Storm QueenIt Goes On
BNJMNOne Sea
Artu & Jerry the CatNuclear Funk
Octo OctaShower Nights Second Chance Mix
Octo OctaForced Nature
Knowing LooksListen to my 45
FluxionMotion 1
ObjectCactus
George FitzgeraldFeels Like
Aril BrikhaPalma
GerdPalm Leaves
Mr Fingers Afropsychojungledub Mix
SkudgePollution
Mike HuckabyThe Tresor Track
ChaircrusherPeople People
HeadhunterClone
DaegaLet It All Go
Holy OtherWith U
PoleAue

An Especially Savage 16:18 with the EMS Putney

The EMS Putney is a particularly unruly beast, as I proved in an EP of Putney Improvisations a couple of years ago.

Today I was fiddling around sampling it, and it seemed to be in a particularly industrial, savage, scary mood. And it definitely varies every time I turn it on. Today was a day where apparently, the Putney had to use its AK. Contains drones, swoops, rhythmic pulsing and chattering, howling, screeching, etc.

This is a mono recording, with no effects other than normalization; the reverb is its own internal spring reverb. In particular please note any distortion is internal to the Putney. PLEASE TURN DOWN THE VOLUME UNTIL YOU KNOW HOW LOUD IT WILL BE. Hearing loss or speaker damage are likely if you aren’t careful.

Do what you want with this. I’m releasing it full Public Domain. If you want a WAV file, let me know and I’ll put it up as well.

[audio:http://www.cornwarning.com/chaircrusher/2012-01-28-Chaircrusher-Putney.mp3|titles=EMS Putney 2012-01-28|artists=Chaircrusher]http://www.cornwarning.com/chaircrusher/2012-01-28-Chaircrusher-Putney.mp3

A life in records

I’m going to be 55 years old this year, and being the sort of music-obsessive nerd that I am I separate my life into musical epochs centered around particular records.

1. 1964 — watched the Beatles on Ed Sullivan at my grandmother’s house with my whole family. My mom — a talented composer, among other fine qualities — insisted we all watch. It’s hard to imagine how that affected everyone then — even my Grandmother thought it was something remarkable.

2. 1966 — I saved up my allowance — for a long time — to buy the Beatles “Rubber Soul” — I got the mono version because it would have taken me another week to get the extra dollar for the stereo version. In my mind the sound of that record — uncluttered and dark is inextricable with the visual image of a dark wood, like mahogany, which of course for me was ‘norwegian wood.’

3. 1970 — the dual shot of Grateful Dead’s “Workingman’s Dead” and “American Beauty.” Forget the Deadheads, the tie die, the bloated, sad death of Jerry Garcia. The Dead crystallized the moment, but with something that will always remain mysterious and deeply American. I wrote an essay for Little Village about it that almost but not quite captures how I feel about these records.

4. 1974 — I don’t know how exactly but I discovered — or rediscovered, it was music that was in the air in my house — John Coltrane & Thelonius Monk. In particular a Riverside re-issue called “Monk/Trane.” Jazz is a fickle thing, that works best in the moment, as it’s being played, but I learned every note of those records, and the version of “Abide With Me” — arranged by Monk but without his piano, still makes me tear up.

5. 1977 — A banner year of “Never Mind The Bollocks It’s the Sex Pistols” and “Talking Heads 77” — I tried to play the Sex Pistols record for my dad, a symphony conductor, and he made it about 3 minutes. He just left the room, shaking his head.

6. 1983 — REM “Murmur” The first few REM records were landmarks in American Music. Like the Dead, they rather outlasted their moment — nothing after “Life’s Rich Pageant” really stuck with me.

7. 1988 — My Bloody Valentine “Isn’t Anything” — as unlike REM as a band could get, a pure, abstract, lovely roaring noise. To the whole “shoegaze” movement this album and “Loveless” basically exhausted the genre before it was fully explored — they just couldn’t be topped. Their influence is immense, and pops up in the weirdest places.

8. 1991 — The Swervedriver EPs on Creation, beginning with “Son Of Mustang Ford.” A lot less punk and a lot more rawk than MBV, Adam Franklin’s songs and the blazing arrangements thereof were impossible not to listen to over and over.

9. 1994 — Two poles of the same universe Aphex Twin “Selected Ambient Works II” and Richie Hawtin “Recycled Plastic” Aphex Twin made music that was like a series of empty rooms that were each haunted by a different ghost. Richie Hawtin’s “Spastik” was an Ars Poetica of pure Rhythm. These two records and a slew more started a headfirst dive into electronic music and led to my own attempts at music production. In an echo of the spirit of 1977, this was homemade DIY music that gave a million people the idea to do it themselves.

10. 2004 — The World Of Arthur Russell. I’m a guy who grew up in Iowa, playing the cello. Arthur Russell was a guy who grew up in Iowa playing the cello. I was aware of “Is It All Over My Face” from club parties, but this album crystallized his genius. I’d give a lot to make a track as transcendent as “In The Light Of The Miracle” or “Go Bang.”

11. 2006 — Burial’s self-titled debut on Hyperdub — I can’t believe it’s been 6 years. Again, someone much imitated since then, but never equalled, except by his subsequent productions. A gateway drug into the world of Dubstep and the whole crazy universe of UK Bass music.

Since then… not sure. I listen to so much new music it’s hard to pick out anything as epochal as these records. And maybe it’s something you only really see in retrospect.

Using Random Processing in Ableton Live

There are two things that I’ve done consistently for 18 years I’ve been using a computer to make music is to experiment with random processes to generate something musically.

EXAMPLE ENSEMBLE: http://www.cornwarning.com/xfer/AbletonLiveRandomizeExample.zip

Ableton Live has a ton of effects. People spend a lot of time and money (or time looking for W4R3Z, which imho is wasted) to find third party VST instruments and effects to give them a palette of sounds. But before you go crazy buying and downloading stuff, it’s a good idea to fully explore the stuff built in to Live.

The Live MIDI effects are an under-utilized resource for creative sequencing, and the MIDI effect rack I’ve built does something that is to me really inspirational: It takes a stream of midi notes and randomizes their pitch and velocity.

That doesn’t seem like much except for this particular context: If you have a drum rack after this MIDI effect rack, when a MIDI note occurs, it adds a random offset to the note number, and assigns a random velocity. If you load a drum rack with an assortment of sounds — in the case of my example, latin percussion samples — it will generate endless variety of drum patterns with continuously changing accents.

From left to right the components of this rack are

  1. Pitch Effect. Adds a fixed offset to incoming notes.
  2. Random Effect. Adds a random offset to incoming notes.
  3. Velocity Effect. Randomly changes velocity of incoming notes.
  4. Velocity Effect. Filters out notes with velocity outside the range lowest to lowest+range.

The actual rhythm is determined by the note pattern that’s playing in the current MIDI track. This is cool because you can use groove templates on (for example) clip with a steady stream of 16th notes, and the output of the rack will follow the groove template. Every time a note is triggered by the clip, a random offset is added to the pitch, which has the effect of choosing a different drum sound, with a random velocity.

The Macro controls on the left side give you control over various parameters.

  1. Lowest: notes with velocities below this value won’t play
  2. Range: notes with velocities above Lowest+Range won’t play
  3. Pitch: Constant offset added to incoming note numbers
  4. Rand Velocity: How much randomness is added to incoming note velocities

Here’s a use case: If you play the third clip in the KW Conga track in the example ensemble, it is a steady stream of notes with a pitch of C1, which in my drum rack corresponds to the first sound. If you don’t want a hit on every 16th note, turning up the Lowest knob will discard notes with low velocity, and turning down Range discards notes with higher velocity. You tune the velocity range with these two knobs to thin out the incoming stream of notes by discarding some of the lowest and highest velocity notes.

The Pitch knob is to get around a limitation of the Random MIDI effect — it only goes up to a maximum offset of 24. Since I have more than 24 sounds loaded in the drum rack, in order to play any of the sounds more than 2 octaves above C1, I have to add an offset. You can also play this knob — or automate it — to change the set of sounds played by the incoming notes. In this particular rack, all the flams are at the top of the drum rack’s note range, so if the Pitch knob is below 8, you won’t get any flams.

The Rand Velocity knob, if turned to zero, doesn’t change incoming velocities at all. This would be useful in the case where you want the Velocity of the Groove template to determine note volumes.

All this is harder to explain than it is to use. Try downloading the example ensemble and fiddle with the knobs, and I think you’ll find that there’s an intuitive feel to using this effect rack. The main thing you need to start with is a drum rack — like the conga rack in the example — driven by clips usually consisting of C1 notes, which is the default lowest note for drum racks. The more sounds you add to your drum rack the more useful the pitch knob will be; if you only have 24 sounds, turning up Pitch will just cause notes to be sent to empty slots in the drum rack.

And if you don’t want to just let this sort of constrained randomness do its thing forever, you can record the output of the MIDI rack in another MIDI track, and then choose a few bars to loop, or find the 4 bars that’s almost perfect and tweak it a bit.

This sort of technique isn’t limited to drum sounds. If you’re using this rack with a pitched instrument it will do something random, and perhaps useful. With a pitched instrument, you can add a Scale Live MIDI effect, in order to constrain the notes played to the scale of your choice.

And that’s only the beginning of what you can do with effect racks. Live’s MIDI effect racks have the same ‘multi-chain’ feature of Live Effect and Instrument Racks — you can set up different chains of MIDI effects and use the Chain Select control to choose between them. And once you add in Max For Live MIDI effects, things can really get crazy.

DJ Mix From KRUI 12-10-2011

I didn’t post this as quickly as I usually do after the show; part of the problem was technical issues, but most of it was the Holidays. At any rate, continuing a trend, I focused on a few new releases — full lengths by Sepalcure, Author, Pinch+Shackleton and Altered Natives. All of which are wicked good, you should give them your Christmas money. Also features a premier of my remixes for Peter Kirn who writes the well-known Create Digital Music & Create Digital Motion blogs.

Worth special mention: Cherie Pyne’s non-dance music track “Tender Steps” which is the closing credits music for the fantastic and fantastically depressing Canadian movie Crackie. I loved the song when I saw the movie; apparently the only way to get her music is to contact her directly — cheriepyn at gmail dot com. Cherie graciously sent me “Tender Steps” by e-mail. She’s also in the band Ledge’s Blast. She’s part of the whole separate musical world going on in Canada; I listen to the Canadian stations on XM Radio and often think that the Canadians that we know about in the USA aren’t necessarily the best, just the most ambitious and luckiest.

[audio:http://www.cornwarning.com/chaircrusher/2011-12-10-Chaircrusher-KRUI-DJ-Set.mp3|titles=KRUI DJ Mix 2011-12-10|artists=Chaircrusher]http://www.cornwarning.com/chaircrusher/2011-12-10-Chaircrusher-KRUI-DJ-Set.mp3
SepalcureOutside
Cherie PyneTender Steps
SepalcureSee Me Feel
P.KirnChange Of Shift(ChrcrshrRMX)
P.KirnAnaxagoras(ChrcrshrRMX)
SepalcureCarrot Man
HXDB & 3rd EyeTranspacific(Resketch Remix)
Altered NativesLoved By Few
MartynViper
MartynDistortions
Altered NativesGalactic
Altered Natives feat. ESPShake That
Altered NativesMy Game My Rules
Altered NativesWasteman of Love
Altered NativesCan’t Trust Myself To Trust You
MartynHorror Vacul
Guy AndrewsShades
MartynPopgun
Altered Nativesgood evening ladies & gentlemen, we are eventide astral
Lazer SwordsSounds Sane
Lazer SwordsKlock
Cooly G + SimbadLandscapes
Pinch+ShackletonRoom Within A Room
Cooly G+KarizmaIt’s Serious
SeijiFace Up
SepalcureMe
P.KirnTrain 69(ChrcrshrRMX)
MartynBauplan
P.KirnOscilloclast(ChrcrshrRMX)
Pinch+ShackletonJellybones
SeijiFrustratin
KlausPim
VIVEKDiablo
Author feat. Ed ThomasTurn
Author feat. Ben GlassGreen Blue
BiomeDMT
Pinch+ShackletonCracks In The Pleasuredome

Fun with Max For Live LFOs

[audio:http://www.cornwarning.com/chaircrusher/Chaircrusher-2011-08-14-BeatRepeatLFO.mp3|titles=Beat Repeat/LFO Experiment|artist=Chaircrusher]http://www.cornwarning.com/chaircrusher/Chaircrusher-2011-08-14-BeatRepeatLFO.mp3

It’s hard not to be an electronic musician without developing a fascination with random/stochastic processes as a compositional tool. Particularly because when you pay attention to e.g. a Max Roach Drum Solo he seems to be balancing random choices with intentional ones. While Roach knows what he wants in broad outlines, part of what makes his playing great is that he has learned to simply allow his muscle memory and hind brain take over and introduce surprises. By letting go of a score and conscious control he’s participating in randomness shaped by his will.

Max spent a lifetime developing the skills as a musician to allow this sort of freedom in his playing. This demonstration clip is what happens when you set up many random Max For Live LFOs to modulate many, many different things. At the core, LFOs are modulating the Repeat and Grid parameters of a Beat Repeat effect. Then two more LFOS modulate the effect send levels, going to a reverb and delay. A third LFO is modulating the rate of the LFO modulating the Repeat parameters.

Then more LFOs modulate the regeneration level and ‘echo reverse’ parameters of the delay, and the size and predelay on the reverb.

One drum loop is the sole audio source for this. All this modulation introduces a currently fashionable sort of crackle where changing parameters introduces audio discontinuities.