I Dream of Wires Documentary: Carl Craig, Canada, and Modular’s Beauty and Agony [Video]

Like the modulars themselves, an upcoming documentary on these analog synth beasts has been lurking behind closed doors. But that won’t be the case for long. “I Dream of Wires,” the crowd-funded documentary that probes artists’ fascination with making music by connecting patch cords, will see a public showcase at Montreal’s MUTEK Festival. This and an upcoming film release, atop a big get-together in New York, could make this a proper summer of modular. In anticipation of their showcase, MUTEK has released two significant excerpts from the film. One talks to Carl Craig, Detroit techno legend, top. Craig describes how …

READ MORE →

FRACT, 3D Adventure Game Played with Synths and Sequencers: Myst Meets Music Making

FRACT is a curious combination of music studio and puzzle game, merging elements of games like Myst with the sorts of synths and pattern editors you’d expect somewhere like Ableton Live. You have to make sounds and melodies to solve puzzles; by the end of the game, say the creators, you’re even producing original music. The work of a small student team out of Montreal, FRACT looks like it has all the makings of an underground indie hit – at least for music nerds. As the creators describe it: FRACT is a first person adventure game for Windows & Mac …

READ MORE →
mhdmtl-hard_at_work

Face Sequencers, Sonic Databases, Automatic Dub Remixes, More Montreal Music Hackday Hacks

Hard at work at Music Hack Day Montréal. Ed.: Hacking Web databases to search sounds, remixing tools to automatically create dub tunes, cameras to sequence and analyze images in new ways, Montréal hackers have been busy. Trevor Knight writes from the event with full coverage from Canada, latest outpost of this global music coding phenomenon: Music Hack Day made its first appearance in Canada at the end of September, painting the event with a Montréal flavour, complete with bilingualism, Montréal-style bagels, and even an appearance of Stephen Harper in a hack. Over the Saturday-Sunday event, musicians, programmers, and hackers scramble …

READ MORE →
mhd-mtl-bagels

Events: Canada Gets Its First Music Hack Day, as Hackers Take Montreal

Good fuel for coding and hacking? Bagels, natch. Photo by Dac Chartrand for CDM. Music Hack Day is an event that’s been gaining lots of steam. Packing engineering experimentation into a marathon session of collaborative, improvised work, followed by lots of sharing, the event tends to focus largely on Web services but also includes novel musical instruments and other inventions. The events have grown in depth, quality, and attendance – the New York event I attended was just massive. (See the intro video below.) And now, for the first time, there’s an event in Canada, in the tech-rich Quebec hub …

READ MORE →
1024architecture

With Neon Guitars and Immersive Projection, 1024 Architecture Become Audiovisual Rock Band

Euphorie live at the Elektra Festival. Photo courtesy Elektra. When a brainy, abstract audiovisual act can elicit some laughs and cheers, you know something is going right. Euphorie, the live music and projection act by François Wunschel, Fernando Favier, and stage designer Pier Schneider of the collectives 1024 Architecture and EXYZT, isn’t brand new. But in the cavernous, packed Usine C at Montreal’s Elektra Festival earlier this month, it surely shone. Inside that booming rehabilitated factory, sound and video elements seemed to just click, the happy result of months of development, practice, and iteration meeting a highly appreciative crowd. Projectors …

READ MORE →

All About Montreal: XLR8R Talks to Ghislain Poirier

There really is something special about Montreal, Quebec’s metropolis just beyond the New York Adirondacks. Having shared our own conversation with Christopher Bauder and Robert Henke with video from their stunning ATOM, here’s what our friends at XLR8R Magazine were up to in May: they were on a tour of Montreal with local Ghislain Poirier. Poirer’s Caribbean-infused electronica has made him one of Montreal’s hottest exports, but this Ninja Tune artist isn’t fleeing for Berlin (ahem). Wandering around Montreal, you really get a sense of his love for the city and what you can do to make the scene what …

READ MORE →

We Love Montreal: Hardware Hackers in “Repurpose” Documentary Video

Nathanaël Lécaudé sends along a lovely video that reveals some of the brilliant hacking scene in Montreal, centering on the Foulab collective and hackspace. The mini-documentary doesn’t assume you’ve heard of things like oscilloscopes and circuit bending, so it could be a good one to pass along to friends and family who haven’t seen this stuff before. This is just one slice of what I know is a fantastically creative scene in Montreal and Québec. Featured: A custom oscilloscope made from a repurposed CRT, by Andrew MacGillivray A 1938 teletype machine, rescued by Redbeard An original boom box made from …

READ MORE →

We Love Montreal: Pre-MUTEK Warper Party and Open Lab, Tuesday 5/26

MUTEK this year looks to be a tremendous few days of audiovisual performance and art. To get in the mood one day early, we’re working with our friends at New York’s eclectic monthly live electronic party to host a special Montreal edition of Warper. It’s a convergence of New York and Montreal artists (full lineup below), running a full twelve hours. It’ll be totally free (donations welcome), with a cash bar available all day and night. RSVP on Facebook http://warperparty.com/ A big thanks to Jazz Mutant, makers of the OSC-driven, multi-touch controllers Lemur and Dexter, for their support. I’ll be …

READ MORE →

MUTEK Line-Up, Showcases: Incredible Audiovisualism Coming, CDM Montreal-Bound

MUTEK, a half decade ago. The goodness continues. Photo: Britta Frahm. We’re inundated with event info, and one of my general rules is to avoid lots of event listings. But the lineup for famed audiovisual fest MUTEK looks simply epic. Highlights, just for a taste: Moderat. Apparat and Modeselektor. Like peanut butter and chocolate. AVISIONS looks, as always, like an essential event in audiovisualism. Wolfgang Voigt will present GAS and Herman Kolgen has a new piece. For the first time, Club Transmediale gets its own showcase. An unusually eclectic lineup adds dub, acoustic-electronic, and cross-genre collaboration. Robert Henke (Monolake) and …

READ MORE →

More from Mutek: Tech and Gear Spottings, Ecology and the Planet

Liz and Peter Dines continue to send dispatches from the epic MUTEK festival in Montreal. Stay tuned to our events.createdigitalmusic.com page for the latest. Among the new reports: various Reaktor spottings among artists, insane turntable abuse, and even a discussion of how arts events can reduce their impact on the planet. (Oddly enough, that last panel evidently included Dan Seligman, with whom I worked at the Sierra Club on international trade and human rights issues in another life of mine.) Check out the ongoing MUTEK coverage while we wait for Liz and Peter to finish off their stack of interviews …

READ MORE →