Ornithology is a branch of zoology pertaining to birds.
This is the top of Devendra’s amp. The Wavedrum is a dynamic percussion synthesizer. You can play it with sticks, brushes, hands, spatulas, slabs of tofu, or Chilean Hawk beaks. The Wavedrum brain contains 36 algorithms for analog, additive, non-linear, physical modeling. 200 sampled sounds, 100 for the head, and 100 for the rim, with assignable velocity-switching capabilities.
It’s not a MIDI conga. It is more of an electronic drum, whose internal sounds are based on a multi-synthesis physical modeling technology. Say that with me, MULTI-SYNTHESIS PHYSICAL MODELING TECHNOLOGY. It’s like saying multi-care physical rehabilitation Olympic high dive center for ornithology. Or like Carl Jung saying man appears to be sub specie aeternitatis. Jung could not experience himself as a scientific problem.
Beneath the skin of the Wavedrum, and underneath a little metal tongue that lies just above the drum-head is an arrangement of sensors and microphones whose output adds to the overall sound, picking up slap sounds and hand noise. There’s not really a way to use it as a guitar effect. Input/Output jacks are: Output: L, R ¼" unbalanced. Phones: Stereo mini phone jack. And AUX IN: Stereo mini phone jack.
King County Executive Dow Constantine is on KUOW RIGHT NOW, he's talking about King County biz, natch, BUT the host, Steve Scher, opened up the segment talking music. Constantine remarked about having seen Mark Lanegan at the now-its-a-music venue the Neptune and how the sound was amazing. I know this past MONDAY Megan had a picture post, but no one commented...was anyone THERE?! How did the show sound? I saw the pix, now I WANNA READ A REVIEW. Own up time...c'mon! Anyone?!
by Dave Segal
on Fri, May 27, 2011 at 10:23 AM
There's a Concertmate 900 keyboard—with 465 sounds and 20 rhythms!—sitting in a trash receptacle (as of 9:50 am) on E. Olive Way near Summit (close to In the Bowl), if anybody needs one. You're welcome.
by Dave Segal
on Wed, Apr 6, 2011 at 11:46 AM
Renowned Seattle audio engineer/record producer Kearney Barton's recording console is up for grabs on eBay. The storied Langevin board's currently at $9,999. Bargain! Sounds made by the Sonics, the Wailers, Quincy Jones, the Kingsmen, and many others have run through this board. Barton's genius fingers have anointed these faders and knobs. History! Bid here.
by Dave Segal
on Thu, Mar 17, 2011 at 1:42 PM
Conny Plank's digital delay unit, yesterday.
Studio meister Conny Plank has a bunch of his gear up on eBay for your bidding pleasure. One of the most important figures in krautrock, Plank produced classic albums by Kraftwerk, Cluster, Harmonia, Neu!, A.R. & Machines, Ash Ra Tempel, Guru Guru, and many others. He also worked the knobs for Brian Eno's Before and After Science and, as an artist himself, he cut Zero Set with Cluster/Harmonia's Dieter Moebius and Guru Guru's Mani Neumeier and Les Vampyrettes' self-titled EP with Can's Holger Czukay.
As music critic Jason Pettigrew put it, you're going to need "elephant-scrotum-sized pockets" to afford this stuff. Godspeed.
Memoir-writing (and not-even-dead-or-dying) guitarist-icon Slash is selling bunches and bunches of his stuff at Julien's—an auction house in Beverly Hills on March 26th. I thought I understood why Michael Jackson did it. But Slash? Why now? Partial proceeds go to the LAYN (Los Angeles Youth Network), and the complete press release is after the jump. Also of note: people who show up dressed as Slash, get a free, absolutely free, auction catalog—so people who already own top hats, look alive!
(Oh, for those of you uninitiated, Kevin Burkett started Electrical Guitar Company by selling aluminum guitars in Florida to nerds on the internet a couple years ago. A couple years later, and he's building aluminum guitars for The Jesus Lizard, Isis, Torche, Converge, Mogwai, Mastodon, Metallica, you name it. If you've ever wondered about my usage of the phrase "aluminum beard," it usually means "appealing to dudes with beards who dig aluminum guitars." The more you know.)
I can't really pinpoint what's so annoying/creepy about this little film, but it might be the old-timey plastic smiles, or that this dude has to hold the Sonovox to his neck like the guy in Mad Max, or that the master of ceremonies is wearing a graduation get up. You be the judge.
Head on over to Questionland, where this week we've got some rock n' roll guitar players and music recording/sound nerds to talk about stuff!
Geoff Ott and Jonathan Plum from London Bridge Studio Graig Markel, musician, producer, gear master James Burns, nerd Vance Galloway, Decibel Fest's main sound guy Evan LeSure, the sound engineer from Neumos
Over the weekend, our pals at Gibson announced their latest monstrosity guitar scheduled to hit the shops this holiday season.
Ladies and gentlemen, I give you...
The Firebird X, with an MSRP of $5,570.
Okay then. Man.
So basically it's like this: behind all the switches and lights and garish colors (dig that diarrhea-water-colored fretboard) this thing has got a computer inside. It tunes itself, it has built in effects, it has a Bluetooth out (wha?) basically, it does everything except sound good. Or as my man X to the Z will tell you:
So I shouldn't be so harsh. Us guitar players are old-fashioned. We fear change. We haven't done ANY innovation in rock music since the 70's! We should be more accepting of new technology that will make performing easier and open new avenues of creativity. Maybe we can learn something from the electronic music bros.
Let's watch the demo from the press conference, maybe that will sway me.
1.) I gotta drop some pounds quick, because I'm probably going to look like that bro in 15 years. 2.) The modulation and delay/reverb effects sound decent, but not much better than a $100 MXR pedal. 3.) The distortion effects sound more or less terrible, like an entire eight-band Studio Seven crabcore show condensed into a few painful moments. Like a Black & Decker vacuum fucking an icepick.("We scooped all the mids we can scoop, captain! We can't scoop no more!") 4.) Man, how big of a pain in the ass it is to switch effects with your hands in the middle of a song? Rolling down the volume or flipping to the neck pickup is hard enough. There's a reason that guitar players have had the effects on the floor for several decades. It's because we're in the middle of a song and our hands are fucking busy, okay? I guess you can buy a Bluetooth compatible multi-effects footswitch for this thing, but you know what? Nevermind. Fucking shoot me already. 5.) What happens when Gibson stops supporting this technology in a couple years when this thing flops like I know it's going to? I bet it's going to be like finding support for DCC or the Apple Newton nowadays. 6.) This thing is way too nice for the places I play at. I'd be totally hosed if some dickweed in the audience spilled/threw some beer at it.
For fuck's sake, Gibson. Really? I know I shouldn't get too upset about this. Gibson is not going to stop making their simpler, more traditional guitars. But I'm curious given how most of their lines have increased in price over the last decade, how much of the Firebird X's $5mil (I read that figure on the internet, so it must be true) R&D cost is going to be grafted onto the overhead of their guitars that actually sell?
It's moments like this where I am ashamed to be a guitar playing rock music bro.
BTW: if you're in need of some lulz, the comments on Gibson's product page for the Firebird X delivers.
by Dave Segal
on Sat, Oct 9, 2010 at 4:54 PM
A lot of musicians talk about getting a "filthy" sound. Now there are people making music out of data derived from measuring actual air pollution in several cities. Wired has published a piece on scientists who use a device—a 3"x5" box called a PuffTron—that can measure this information, which they then convert into music.
A passage from the article:
“We’re trying to take the rich set of patterns you find in music and apply that to air-pollution data so they become audible,” says Greg Niemeyer, of the University of California at Berkeley’s Center for New Media.
Niemeyer and Stanford University electronic music composer Chris Chafe take air-quality data sampled in locations including Katmandu, Shanghai and Tokyo, then turn the measurements into herky-jerky free jazz that streams for registered users on their Black Cloud site.