If you missed my live stream a few weeks back here is an unedited YouTube live replay of my solo multimedia concert. The performance is a combination of live arrangement and live playing that features original electronic music with real-time visuals.
More live streams are coming, so subscribe to my YouTube channel and click the bell icon to get notified of upcoming videos and streams.
The video is 23 minutes long but if you just want to jump to a particular song you can use the links below. Let me know in the comments which was your fav 😃.
- 0:00 Stand By (Recording of soundscape “Slipping Into Stasis Entering Jump Gate 42” from album Sonic Encounters Volume 02
- 0:35 “Gonna Rise Up“ live performance of song from the album Fear Cannot Save Us
- 4:27 “Replicant’s Dream” live performance of a song from a forthcoming album
- 7:42 “Techno Planet 01” live performance of a song from a forthcoming album
- 11:49 “Disconnected” a Bandcamp single performed live
- 16:50 “Light Runner” live performance of song from a forthcoming album
- 22:34 End Program with audio excerpt from the song “They Walk Among Us” from album Reboot
All the music and sound is from Elektron Analog Four MKI, Octatrack MKII, and Digitone. The machines are not synced. I mostly play directly from the machines, but also play notes on the Analog Four via the Novation Launchkey Mini MK3 keyboard and on the Digitone via the Launchpad Pro MK3 grid. I also use the Launchkey Mini MK3 along with a Logidy UM3 pedal to control Resolume Arena 7 in real-time. Visual sources are from live camera input and other various sources.
The performance got some nice mentions by synth publications.
The video was featured as a Synth Sunday Jam. Thanks Synthtopia – woot!
Synth and Software Magazine
I got an amazingly kind mention on the Synth and Software Facebook page.
Synth & Software is an online publication and social media community for electronic music enthusiasts—anyone who enjoys listening or who plays, programs, or aspires to make music with synthesizers, samplers, DAWs, audio processors, and other instruments and software…https://synthandsoftware.com
Performance “Instrument” Notes
I view this entire rig as a multimedia “instrument”. One goal in designing this “instrument” was to accommodate the following use cases while being air locked in a performance cockpit where my performance flow would not change whether I’m performing:
- Music sets in-person
- Music + visuals sets in person
- Music + visual sets via live stream
- Music + visuals sets in person simulcast via live stream
When I’m performing in person I don’t normally use headphones and don’t look at the monitor on my laptop. Instead listen I to the P.A. or monitors. I look at the screen or wall/screen/scrim where the visuals are being projected. This incorporates the performance space as part of the vibe of the performance.
My streaming equivalent of this is to us a big screen right in front of me and perform with reference monitors at near concert volumes. Performing this way is much closer to performing on stage in front of an audience which puts more positive energy into the performance.
Conceptual Overview of 2020 Rig
- Performance Cockpit – The region outlined with aqua highlighter is my performance cockpit where I play, perform, control live arrangements, and visuals.
- Music Machines – All sound and music is produced via the following Elektron machines:
- Analog Four – Analog synth with 4 synths and effects
- Octatrack – Performance sampler, mixer, looper, effects processor, live arrangement of playback when needed
- Digitone – Digital FM synth with 4 synth and effects
- Live Camera for Visual Synthesis – I compose the camera shots in real-time by moving a Logitech HD Webcam which is a source for my visual software Resolume
- MIDI Controllers
- Novation Launchkey Mini MK3 – Keys are used to play the Analog Four through hardware MIDI. RGB pads use custom MIDI modes to control Resolume through USB MIDI.
- Novation Launchpad Pro MK3 – Velocity and pressure sensitive pads are used to play the Digitone through hardware MIDI. I have custom control modes that I can also use to control Resolume via USB MIDI.
- Audio & Visual Monitoring – Screen + reference monitors.
- Audio to the house / Audio interface with Loopback for Streaming – Yamaha AG06
- Laptop for Visuals and Streaming – Microsoft Surface Laptop 3, Windows 10
- Visual Software – Resolume Arena 7 software
- Streaming Software – OBS Studio software for streaming
- Streaming Endpoint – YouTube…
Using Midi Controllers to Decouple Visual Arrangements from Song Arrangement
In past incarnations of my multimedia show I controlled the arrangement and automation of visual effects for Resolume with Ableton Live “dummy clips” and automation envelopes. This meant the arrangement for visuals were implicitly locked with musical arrangement. For this new rig I wanted to decouple the visuals from the audio arrangement. This would allow me to perform the arrangement of the visuals manually making the experience more variable and unique with repeat performances.
I now control arrangement with the RBG pads on the Novation Launchkey MINI MK3.
Alternatively I can use the Logidy foot pedal for hands-free arrangement.
While I’m pretty busy playing and doing live arrangement, I can also use the Launchpad Pro MK3 with it’s custom MIDI modes and velocity sensitive fader grid feature to control parameters on Resolume.
FYI I’ve written past posts on these controllers in these categories:
Juggling Machines with No MIDI Sync
My set list is made up of songs spread across each machine and I often perform an entire song using only one machine. In a few cases I will work across machines. For example, I perform the majority of my song “Disconnected” on the Octatrack and the leads from the Analog Four.
The machines are not synced and are not connected via MIDI. This allows for complete freedom to do live arrangement, change my set list on-the-fly. I might have corresponding patterns with matching tempos across machines but I select them and trigger them on-the-fly so I can play around with the pocket, tap tempo to shift or even change tempos or free-form play to add more tension.
Having no cross-machine dependency also means if a machine where to go down during a performance or have to be rebooted (which has never happened), the song and show can go on.
Fits in One Case and a Backpack
Another design goal for the rig was it had to fit into a Pelican 1510 case and backpack. This allows me to fly with the rig as well as load in to local shows with only one trip from the car.
I flew with an earlier version of this rig to Asheville, NC to perform at Mountain Skies in 2019 and manage to jam all this into a Pelican 1510.
With the addition of the new controllers I’m sure I could fit it all in the pelican with some overflow into my backpack.
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