Synthesis Under the Sea

I WAS RECENTLY turned on to a fun new audio toy called Seaquence. Described by its creators as an, “…experimental musical petri-dish,”  it lets you sequence multiple 16 step loops using a variety of editable waveforms. You can modify the scale, transposition, and volume envelope of the sounds in addition to the melodic sequence. These sequences and waveforms then take the form of colorful microbe-like entities that swim around the interface. The volume of each sequence is relative to how close its creature is to the center. The end result reminded me immediately of FLOW.

It’s possible to save, share and edit your creations, or those of your friends. For instance, here’s my first foray: http://seaquence.org/vt9

I was having some problems with the timing of the sequences. It drifted a bit and seemed to swing every other measure or so. However, this didn’t distract from how intriguing this little project is.

Here’s a quick demo video, but you should really just dive in!

romantec by complicit

THESE FOLKS ARE good friends of mine and amazing musicians. They just put out an ep. Check it out…

CAUTION: DEEP TECHNO AHEAD!

Velosynth, an ‘Open-Source Bicycle Interaction Synthesizer

VELOSYNTH IS AN ‘open-source bicycle interaction synthesizer’ conceived by EFFALO. What is that?  Basically it’s a box one can strap to a bike that will make different sounds depending on how the bike is being ridden at any given moment. It accomplishes this by sending data from various sensors (speed, acceleration, direction, lean, et cet.), depending on how things are set up, to parameters like oscillation, amplification, and modulation. It will also apparently share data with other Velosynths in the area over a ‘microlocal’ network. The Velosynth website explains in more detail.

Here’s a video:

Audio Toys from the Lab

I RECENTLY DISCOVERED a blog of sorts by André Michelle. André is, form what I can gather, one of the masterminds behind audiotool, a really cool, flash-based DAW. aM laboratory is a repository for the studies and tests that eventually lead to finished products like audiotool. They range from a simple flanger to algorithmic visualizers to a full on reproduction of the Roland TR-909.

I myself can’t stop playng with ‘Pulsate’, but they’re all at least interesting. Have fun!

Pulsate

Angular Drum Synthesis

HERE’S A QUICK look at a very cool multi-touch drum synthesis program made by Kevin Schlei. It seems like a pretty complex instrument. To hear Schlei describe his instrument:

Instead of mapping touch positions (X and Y coordinates) directly to synthesis parameters, relationships such as angle, distance, and velocity compared to other points are used… Mapped parameters include: number of active points, points created per second, points held per second, points’ distance and angle to previous, and average X and Y position of all points.

Rhythmic Pings and Cycles

Sonar from Renaud Hallée on Vimeo.

Cold Weather Riding and Field Recording

THIS PAST WINTER, Marlin Ledin took it upon himself to bike around the Apostle Islands on Lake Superior on his brake-less Surly Pugsley. While he was at it, he made some recordings of the ice cracking beneath him.

He describes his adventure at  www.bikingtheapostles.com

The “Gear/Safety” section in particular, in which he describes his rig and some of the precautions taken against freezing to death in the event of a fall through the ice, is a good read.

This is an inspiring undertaking, and some of the sounds he’s recorded while on his adventure are truly amazing (and creepy).

Audio: The Lake Drums

Also, check out what John Keston of audiocookbook.org has to say about this here.