PAL198X Video, Featuring Neon Indian – Bleep Labs Synth, Probably Best Promo Ever

The Bleep Labs 198X, a mini analog synth co-designed with the band Neon Indian, is now here. It’s a pocketable three-oscillator synth – all triangle oscillators – that in addition to three knobs and light sensors lets you plug in control voltage or other devices and sensors in order to modulate its sound. That makes for some good, bleepy, party-clearingly noisy fun. And then there’s the Neon Indian-produced promo video, which is … insane. So there’s that. The synth itself you get as part of a $50 package that also includes vinyl, a CD, a t-shirt, and a poster. Hopefully …

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NYC Sunday: MeeBlip, Mortal Kombat-Playing Guitars, Chips, Checkers, and Glockenspiel

Sunday night in Manhattan, the MeeBlip makes its public debut. If you want to check one out in person, ask any questions, etc., come check it out. (I’ll also have my battery-powered rig: one Vox amp on batteries, one MintyBoost battery pack for MeeBlip, one Rock Band 3 keytar.) And that’s just the beginning – we’ve got a huge lineup of stuff for this week’s Handmade Music. Sunday, November 14th FREE OPEN LABORATORY: 4pm – 7pm PARTY + MUSIC: 7p – 10pm Culturefix, LES (Map) Handmade Music is part party, part science fair. Come meet people who make things that …

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Record it Live to the Internet: Indaba Reveals JavaFX-Powered Online Recording Studio

Indaba Music, a community and suite of online tools for musicians, announced today they’ve revamped their online recording and production tool using Java and JavaFX. The result: a platform-agnostic, online interface that allows you to record music “directly to the Internet.” And the band Weezer is excited enough about it that they’re giving their official endorsement. Indaba, along with some others, already had an online music production tool. The new version expands on that idea, allowing you to record audio signal directly online, and beefing up tools for mixing, editing, and looping. Just like tools like GarageBand, a pre-built set …

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Indie Bands: Taco Bell Wants to Feed You Burritos, Promote You on Hot Sauce

Photo: Morgan Tepsic. Does that mean South Korea has Taco Bells? I usually try to steer clear of the marketing crud, but this is too bizarre to pass up. Taco Bell, anxious to jump on this whole “indie music” bandwagon, is using the only currency it has: combinations of refried beans, cheese, rehydrated ground meat, and tortillas. Here’s the plan: they find 100 bands, and give them $500 in Taco Bell food while they’re on tour — just in case the burritos were the one thing breaking your tour budget. (Okay, there is that whole fuel cost and lodging thing, …

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Exclusive Behind the Scenes: Interpol’s Live Rig

You’ve seen plenty of live rigs with mile-high stacks of keyboards and sound modules. But this setup is different: one of the world’s best bands is using an elaborate setup of software synths. Binding it all together is one of the most sophisticated software configurations I’ve ever seen, the fruits of labors by of our friend Jonathan Adams Leonard – a talented musician and technologist – in Kore 2. I wouldn’t exactly recommend this kind of setup to anyone else; it involved pushing Kore to its bleeding edge. But Jonathan’s walk-through of the hardware and software programming for this show …

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The World’s Hugest Sampler?

Getting fed up with all this Lilliputian nonsense of mobile devices and ever-smaller portable music gadgets? Well, here’s a massive leap in the opposite direction: DIY sound electronics maker and David Crowder*Band drummer Bwack created the biggest, most oversized sampler he could design. From emprise34’s xanga blog, details of Bwack’s Herculean creation: he was commissioned by our good friends from the band family force 5 to construct the largest sampler in the history of live rock music. and, with the assistance of his carpentry proficient padre, don bwack, he has done it. there were a few necessary requirements: one, it …

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Keyboard + Monome = One Crazy DIY Instrument Hybrid by STS9’s David Phipps, Plus New Album/Tour

The Monome is small and elegant, but there’s something to be said for traditional instrumental controllers like a keyboard. So why not combine them? David Phipps of the electronic jam band Sound Tribe Sector 9 did just that, and sends CDM this photo of the project in process. He’s off on a five week tour starting Friday, so it’ll be on hold for a bit, but even not-quite-done I had to share it. David writes: i hope to bring ‘The Peaceblaster’ on tour in the fall. note the unashamed reference to our album available July 8th:) i picked up a …

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Video: The Trons, All-Robot, Self-Playing Band

Perhaps fueled by YouTube comepetition, robotic instruments are looking more and more impressive. What I’d most like to see: a robotic battle of the bands. The latest creation comes to us from the all-robot band The Trons, based in New Zealand. They have cute names, and I bet the ‘bots are more fun to date than some, ahem, real drummers my friends have gotten involved with… The crew: Ham (vox and rhythm guitar), Wiggy (single string lead guitar), Swamp (drums), Fifi (keyboards, one hand working!) Hmmm, basically true of my keyboard playing, as well. And here’s their blurb: The Trons …

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Off-Topic: Flight of the Conchords Video Asks, Do You Like Ladies?

In fairness, this isn’t really off-topic. The connection of ladies to music is clear here. There are, too, the fantastic Ladies of CDM — few in number, yes, but mind-bogglingly awesome in quality. (Ladies, feel free to roar here.) And, of course, for those of you who are not ladies yourselves but an aficionado of ladies, it’s clear that, like roller skates, synths and music are part of the essential lady-attracting formula. The bad news I have to break for Flight of the Conchords fans:you’ll be waiting until well into 2009 for a new season. Side note: CDM loves New …

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Great Musical Mysteries: Van Halen Mishap Remains Unsolved

What exactly went wrong at this botched Van Halen performance of Jump? The discussion continues, though the current running consensus is that a guitar tuning was screwed up, not the sample rate on a performance. (It’s not clear why Van Halen transposed the track from the album version, but that’s near-certainty.) Even the creator of a video supporting the sample rate theory has backed down. Christopher shares his explanation below. Pray that one day your onstage train wrecks will get this much analysis. Mine tend to involve only free produce — not always fresh, sadly.

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