ander

Preview: NYC’s In/Out Festival, in Videos, Embraces Eclectic Lineup and Music DIY

You can complain about music events and festivals as they are, dream about what you’d imagine an event could be – or you can go and make it happen. And since the latter category fits friends-of-the-site Chris Gilroy and Lara Grant, it’s well worth an endorsement for this weekend’s In/Out Festival. (For their part, both Chris and Lara have been regulars at our Handmade Music NYC series; Chris as an electronic audiovisualist, and Lara as a textile-and-sound-melding felted signal processing guru.) If you’re in New York, hope you can make it or even help cover it for CDM. If you’re …

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Turntable Meets Cello, Sax, Laptop: How Archie Pelago Uses The Bridge and Ableton Live

With laidback, exotic grooves and richly-coordinated interlaced cello, saxophone, turntable, and electronics, Archie Pelago’s music relies on some serious technological savvy. To be sure, all you really need to play instruments and computers and turntables together is to get into a room and start jamming. But to realize their specific musical vision, the trio of Hirshi, Cosmo D and Kroba have turned to an advanced Ableton Live rig, centered around The Bridge to couple Serato and Live. Here’s a look at their music – and all the gory details that combine to make their setup tick. Grab the free EP …

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In Videos, a Battle of Controllers and Live Electronic Performance

In a competitive show of virtuosity, artists at an event in San Francisco over the summer battled to show that live electronic and laptop performance can be physical. It’s dance music that makes the artist sweat, and not just the audience. Hosted by the new Controllerism.com blog with San Francisco’s LoveTech and Slayer’s Club communities, the West Coast Championship Controller battle saw some fierce competition from some top names in live laptop music. The events itself was back on June 25, but this week, full video documentation has become available, so those of us who couldn’t be there can get …

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Snapshots of Artists, Ableton Live in Performance: Cosmo D on Cello, Erin Barra with Voice + Keys

Cosmo D, in for a demonstration of cello with Ableton. The computer as bandmate is nothing new. It’s just more stable, more powerful, and friendlier than it has been ever before — and that, coupled with growing familiarity, has been making it more commonplace with artists. So just how are artists working with computers onstage when they also play instruments and sing? Recent guests at New York’s Ableton Live user group have been demonstrating their own techniques for playing Live, live. They work with loops, recording, sampling, live effects, synths – all the things you’d expect – but find ways …

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Nicolas Jaar, Making Electronic Music Eminently Live, Talks to MTV About Honesty

Nicolas JaarGet More: Nicolas Jaar, MTV Hive A few decades is a short time in the history of instruments. But something magical is happening: the electronic instrument, the computer, is finally easily shifting into performance scenarios, into improvisation, and into bands. (The performance features Livid’s Ohm64 and Ableton Live, with sax, guitar, and drums, at New York’s Le Poisson Rouge. See a note on the rig at Livid’s blog.) Look no further than Nicolas Jaar. In an insightful performance and conversation for MTV Hive, he reveals how he thinks about music – and puts his chops where his mouth is. …

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Live from Beijing: Audiovisual Broadcast Today, and a Platform for Conversations and Education

Artist gogo (Sheng Jie ) in Tokyo. Presenting artists from around Earth to viewers around Earth, a center in Beijing has found a way to do live performance for a sleepless world without waking the neighbors. Let me start out by saying this: if you read CDM from China, say hello. We’re in the wrong language, we have no translation, and I seriously doubt our Texas data center is delivering this site with any speed (until we upgrade to an international CDN), but the only reason I still run CDM is in order to reach people, and to hear from …

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One Woman Band: Theremin, Laptop, and Voice with Dorit Chrysler in Moog Sound Lab

Photo courtesy Moog Music. The earliest major analog electronic instrument meets laptop, as artist Dorit Chrysler demonstrates the power of her voice and musicianship in the Moog Sound Lab. How it works: To function as a one woman band, Dorit triggers a prerecorded backtrack on her laptop, adding vocals and theremin in real time. At her feet are a Moogerfooger MF-104Z Analog Delay and an Akai Head Rush looper that add layers of complexity to the sonic depth to her sound. It’s an eminently practical rig, with the sort of gear you can really cherish rather than just dispose – …

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Design to Address Visual Performance in Music, Explained by a Giant Robot Face

Computing technology is an inherently disruptive thing, wonderfully so. It solves problems you didn’t know you had. It creates problems, then creates new problems in even trying to understand those problems. Simply using a computer is a kind of design statement. You’ve seen questions about what happens with computer performance and audience interaction. But, in AMALGAM, design student Jacob Lysgaard asks those questions, and proposes solutions, in a new way: with a giant talking robot face. (See above.) Laptop and electronic performance produces a number of symptoms that can be problematic. As the video roboface above puts it, you might …

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Tim Exile’s “The Mouth,” Reaktor-Built Creation for Your Voice

Tim Exile is a mad, Reaktor-patching genius. What I love about his instruments is the emphasis on performance. THE FINGER put you at the helm of wild, keyboard-based effects. THE MOUTH continues the MIDI keyboard triggering, but focuses, as the name implies, on using your voice and microphone as the main input. See some of the effects in the goofy video below, but know this: a wide range of sonic mayhem is possible with this instrument. I got to spend some time with Tim in Berlin early in the summer as he was still building The Mouth, and it was …

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