2010年6月3日星期四

A refreshing morning.

1) Ocarina!
Recently I've got one 12-hole ocarina from taobao. And I love playing it very much. It's got a very smooth and bright sound, easy to learn and don't need any maintenance or accessories. Great instrument!

2) ET-301!
http://www.kvraudio.com/forum/viewtopic.php?t=287181



My absolute fav delay of ALL TIME got an update! I used ET-100 and 200 in the old days. They sound fantastic. But they used to keep on eating computer memory each time I hit play, until you can't run anything anymore. I hope this time this issue is sloved.

HEARTS!

via http://brontoscorpiomusic.blogspot.com/

3) Vermona Lancets
I really don't want to buy anything anymore this year. But the new Vermona lancets look very sexy. Especially I love the Vermona drum sound. So someday I'll get one kick lancet, should be next year I think! ;)

2010年5月19日星期三

A bit of every thought

1) After the last dnb gig, I won't do dnb live sets anymore. I am not interesed in dnb and club anymore. I don't enjoy it, I don't practice so why bother doing more?

2) Setup my studio, re-install my studio computer, repair my guitar, pickup the unfinished tracks;

3) I've made the purchase of one Crowphonics Cro-1 and one gieskes.nl WTR. The 1st one will give a lot of options for analog modular madness while the WTR can be a very expressive instrument. I look forward to play them all. It might sounds wired, but I didn't bought them out of gear lust, but out of real usage this time. It feels good;

4) At the same time I am feeling that some unused gears should go? Still no use for Ruin&Wesen Minicommand, thinking about selling it, any offer?

5) When I used Vista, it was hard. I thought it's just my unfamiliarity. And after I use Win7, I realized that it is not my unfamiliarity, it is its shabbiness;

6) I so lust over unsonsored vids of Rio Hamasaki. Tsubomi had become a pervert in recent vids and it's fun to watch.

2010年5月4日星期二

Gear lust is a crime

Room decoration is almost finished. A whole month of fighting with messy, dusty and dirty environment. Now I can understand more of the pain that europeans had suffered from the dust.

No doubt I will have a new better work space very soon.

Lust is a crime, gear lust is no exception, the payoff is not being productive. Back in the day I made a lot of music with just one computer. As my gear collection grows, I hardly finish any music. I just keep wanting new toys, making new stuff with them and leave LOTS of unfinished tracks. This kind of thing must come to an end. I shall focus on unfinished tracks first.

One rule for me to keep is just focusing on my own workflow and keeping on it, stop trying new workflows.

2010年4月20日星期二

2010年3月28日星期日

SunVox is FREE now!


(Click to its website)

Today when I browse my google reader, I've found that on palm-sounds blog there is a news saying SunVox is free now. That really makes me happy. I thought about buying a windows copy in the past but gradually forgot that thing. There are already so many stuff that I can play with so I won't go deep into this software, but it is very good:

I love the simplicity of both its interface and function set, yet the function set is enough for realizing many, many musical ideas. The sound of it is totally digital, crystal clear, clean, crisp with a bit of nostalgic feel.

You can check out the album that its author produced.
This is a really nice album with interesting and beautiful visual effects.

Big ups to the author for releasing SunVox for free!

2010年3月26日星期五

Octatrack from Elektron / OP-1 from Teenageengineering

This time Elektron had unviled its new octatrack in Musikmesse. It's been already around 6-7 years after they release monomachine. So everyone had been waiting for their new toy for a l---o---n---g time.

In short, Octatrack is an 8-track loop sampler with an Elektron twist (the thing that makes people love this company). This machine fits exactly in a part of the current trend of the development of electronic music - live looping - think something like the performance of Tim Exile. Octatrack has 4 analog inputs and an Elektron design (which almost means it will be great for live use) so it should start a new wave of "people beatboxing/playing instrument/singing, layering and tweaking them up" kind of thing. Which should be quite fun to watch and listen.

I still prefer OP-1 to Octatrack because it fits my workflow better. The design that have these things all included, is just simply amazing:
1) tactical control (not touch screen);
2) synthesis;
3) sampling;
4) built-in mic;
5) sequencing;
6) refined design;
7) nice building quality;
8) built-in rechargeable battery;

This thing seems very useful and lovely. For me this could mean the shortest distance between musical ideas to musical result ever - no booting up time, no wire connections and audio/midi routing. Just tweak sound when I need synthesis, sing when I want vocal, play when I need instrument, all can be recorded witin a few button presses - it is very simple. We are normally overwhelmed with zillions of functions and possibilities, but forget that a simple function can be used in many ways.

In the old days, people use limited functions wisely to slove problems and create things, these days people just google a solution online, and there can never be enough "solutions" if we go into details on each matter in our life.

These Swedes are really taking there own place in electric music gear world. I want to go there someday.

2010年3月15日星期一

Drum n'Bass gig on 18th.


(click for bigger pic)

I will play @ lantern on 18th, this thursday. This is a free party so feel free to come if you have time!

I've exported a lot of materials from my massive collection of unfinished tracks so you can hear many new stuff from me.

Working with midi controllers

I've been working with my midi controllers and computer to get my live setup running. They were Launchpad and reMOTE 25SL compact. It was somewhat a painful process, it is because of one of softwares' strong point - the openness, one of the bad points - same shapes of physical controls for all parameters (it helps a lot to have one lcd on the 25SL). These together with my perfectionism had brought me many headaches. I need to remind myself from time to time, that I need to stop improving the interface, but actually practicing on it.

Back in the old days, there weren't many ways to make music. Now there are already too many ways, just like there are too much infomation everyday. The beauty of new technologies is tht people can find exact ways that fit their tastes and habits. But one must learn to renounce and keep a sober mind when seeing and trying new things.

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I've ordered a tonguedrum from tonguedrum.com yesterday. And I am looking forward to it very much.

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In the JAV side, the FH-26 release from Oriential Dream fits my taste nicely. The Airi Kagura release from G-Queen is great too. And the best thing could be some quality uncensored release of Rio Hamasaki.

Regards,
/M.Q.

2010年2月16日星期二

Nanoloop for iphone/ipod touch



- Six channels, each can be synth or sampler
- Fast and easy to use stepsequencer
- Synthesizer with envelope, filter, LFO and other parameters
- Sample external audio or nanoloop’s own sound output
- Song editor with loop function
- Save function
- Works on 1st gen iPod touch and 2.2 software
- Send and receive projects via e-mail, using the iPhone’s / iPod’s e-mail program

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Being an long-term nanoloop user, I dreamed about this, and now it is finally here.
I'll buy this when I get back to Beijing.

2010年2月10日星期三

Spring Festival Is Drawing Near.

Many bussineses stop one after another, many people gone or going home, less people and more red for this city.

Happy Spring Festival!
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Chinese_New_Year

I will be in TaiYuan, Shanxi in the following a few days.

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"I'm Yours" from Jason Mraz is a very standard pop track, with a light reggae touch. Melody is kind of already prevalent for a long time. But some little cliche like pitch bends and pauses make it more interesting.

What's the most important is that I feel happy when listening to it. So any rational analysis are pale and nonsense. I simply enjoy it!

Regards,
/M.Q.

2010年2月3日星期三

ThumbJam Review


(Click for website)

ThumbJam. I seen its icon too many time when I browse through the music category in the app store. But the icon design looks shitty IMO so I didn't even clicked it before.

When I was looking for some expressive acoustic instrument sound for my current work. This icon shows again and finally I click for the sake of finding out why its price is so high...

Impressive!

It is a multi sampled acoustic instrument app, with configurable tilt expression, scale, fx, together with a built-in looper.

For some bowed string sounds like cello, the simple tilt volume expression feature is a giant step forward than midi keyboard control which is the most common control methods for computer plugins.

Anyway, ThumbJam won't successfully fake a real cello when it comes to different playing techniques on the real instrument, but for some simple long notes/pads, this is quite enough.

There are quite a few other instruments there too.

I can also connect this app with Soniccouture's product in my mind. It can be put into the same category with Gu Qin from Soniccouture, because of the rich expression ability they can offer.

Worth $6 just for the cello alone. And there are also some other great sounding instruments as well.

2010年1月27日星期三

Bleep!Synth Review


(Click the pic for its website)

One day I need to play some chords with arp and S/H modulations in my band. I've got the ipod that day and instantly bought Bleep!Synth. Programmed a few sounds and used in the rehearsal and I'd say that I am impressed.

The synth engine is pretty standard and allaround. Not as fat as a moog and not as extreme as a deMOON, but really nice and useable. Character is towards digital, which is great, because a dabbler analog simulation won't make any sense.

The real highlight is the ability to customize the matrix "keyboard", this is way better than fake piano keys. And the "motion" feature - it is sort of an automation function - you tap any synth parameter and you have a 16 steps seq for it. This reminds me a lot of Elektron stuff. This design is useful, easy and fun.

I want to suggest a few features, which could be very useful:
1) organize patches in folders;
2) up/down keys on the "play" page to scroll through patches in the current folder;

So I can take all the patches needed in one folder and scroll through them during live.

An overall great synth, totally worth 8$.

I've got an ipod touch.

Haven't post for a few days. One reason is busyness, the other is lazyness - it seems that if there's more to say, the harder I will start to say it.

Altho NAMM happend during that period of time, but nothing caught my eyes, because recently the little iphone/ipod touch really got my attention.

There are lots of music apps, and most of them are really really cheap. But I don't want to overwheim myself with too many apps. Plus I don't need to replace anything within my current setup. Instead, I'll add some features or sounds that's lacked in my setup. So the software selection would be a critical thing. My choice will based on:

1) Function/Sound - app that provides new functions or sounds that my current setup doesn't have;
2) Interface - app that suits the multitouch/accelerometer interface;
3) Speciality - app that does one thing but does it very well.

I will be posting some reviews of some apps I've bought/downloaded and played.

2010年1月11日星期一

How to make hoover with analog synth (Chinese)

A electronic music artist liman asked me how to make a hoover sound with analog synth so I made this video. Hopefully it will help more people.

This video is in Chinese so it is not useful for you if you don't speak Chinese.

Failed to embed. So here you are.

2010年1月7日星期四

Harmony Table Keyboard for Novation Launchpad

This really worth some promotion. In my 1st ever blog post I wrote about buying one Harmony Table Keyboard when I have the money. But that didn't happen, so I bought a novation launchpad and a whole lot of stuff for the money.

Altho I haven't got my launchpad which should arrive little later than 20th, but this is one of the things I will def try and use in my production.

Click the pic for introduction:


Click here for download link

Since this program will use the launchpad midi in port and midi ports are exclusive, I guess I won't be able to use the basic launchpad features while using this program. But I guess it will be acceptable to drop those basic features in song writing process.

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And there are also other programs in his software pack, like 3 kinds of sequencers (with tempo set by ms ;<) and a xy midi controller. Which seem all be fun to play with.

Summary : Big ups to the author!

Regards,
/M.Q.

Drone With deMOON

My 2nd tutorial for Gotharman deMOON.



Your other drone machines will have a very hard time trying to sound colder and more digital than this one!

2010年1月1日星期五

Happy new year!

my late greetings:

Wish you a great, fruitful year;
Keep going, keep fulfilled;
Be peaceful and calm;
Keep love in your heart, enjoy your life;
And good luck.