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Podcast Soundscape Journal

Sonic Encounters Podcast 001 – And What Do The Trees Hear When the Wind Blows?

This song is an ambient sonic journey starting with natural sounds which morph into the hidden inner world of trees and back again. The piece starts off with a 120 degree stereo field recording of wind blowing through aspen trees and surrounding trees in Louisville, Colorado just outside of Boulder.

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Production Notes

ALL sounds in the other 8 tracks of the recording use the original 30 seconds of audio from the trees as source audio. To create the inner-world sonic soundscape I used a variety of techniques from processing the sound with effects through re-synthesizing the harmonic content of the trees to make new playable virtual instruments that allowed me to compose subtle pitched drones.
Field Recording
  • Date & Time: April 27, 2012
  • Location: Louisville, CO
  • Recorder: Zoom H2
  • Format:  44.1kHz/24bit 120 degree stereo

Instrumentation

  • Ableton Live
  • Native Instruments Absynth
  • Rob Papen Predator

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(Modulate This) Musique concrète Synth: Absynth

Absynth Sound Design Experiment – Non-Linear Radioactive Soda Can

Radioactive soda can

I recently did a post where I manipulated the sample of the sound of a pen striking a half-full can of soda with Ableton Push and pad pressure. In this post I used the same sample, but this time with Absynth. You can listen to the experiment on Soundcloud here or in the embedded player below.

The recoridng starts with the original sample just to illistrate the starting point. I built an Absynth preset with granular synthesis to manipulate the play head plus grain size. I use the Aetherizer effect to further manipulate the signal with a comb filter with feedback. I achieve non-linearity by setting the sample start envelope to "Loop" which causes the sound to keep re triggering and playing through the grains and filing up the Aetherizer's buffer. When played at certain pitches, this non-linearity feedback results in a Geiger counter-like sound. All that from a coke can strike :^) A play the preset with various notes to show how different the harmonic content is as it feedback at different frequencies.

I've become quite handy with Absynth, so if there is some aspect of Absynth you'd like me to do a post on, leave a comment.
 

 

Mark Mosher 
Electronic Musician, Boulder, CO
 
http://www.markmoshermusic.com 
http://www.aiwinter.net 
http://bouldersynth.com (meetup)

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(Modulate This) Sound Design Synth: Absynth

Pure and Broken Circuits 01 – Absynth Sound Design Experiment

Pure-broken-01

"Pure and Broken Circuits 01" is an Absynth sound design experiement. A sound design experiment showing the darker virtual analog modelling side of Absynth (no samples here) to illustrate Absynth's range beyond the typical motion pad :^) This piece is an improvisation using an original preset patched with two oscillator in single mode and two Filters with feedback. I'm using waveshaping feedback mode and modulating filters and resonance with envelopes which creates the sonic movement as the envelopes play out.

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(Modulate This) Synth: Absynth

“Inside the Grid on Altair IV” – A One-Note One-Patch Soundscape in Absynth 5

"Inside the Grid on Altair IV" by Mark Mosher. A One-Note One-Patch Soundscape in Absynth 5 from Mark Mosher on Vimeo.

Update: I’ve also made this available as an MP3-320 audio download on soundcloud.

"Inside the Grid on Altair IV" is a soundscape created with one patch from scratch using the Absynth 5. It is performed be pressing and holding a single note for the entirety of the song. While I have used Absynth as the sole instrument for songs in the past (Tracks 3 & 4 on my last album markmosher.bandcamp.com/album/no-ghosts-just-fear), I've never created a patch where one held note triggers the entire composition. Recent works by Absynth creator Brian Clevinger and artist Anthony Distefano have inspired me to do start working on some pieces of this nature and this is my first of many to come.

The audio is CD quality, and the video shows a behind-the-scenes look at Absynth's wonderful 68-stage modulatable envelopes in action. So all the movement and changes in dynamics, pitch, timber are meticulously drawn and programmed as part of the patch. The envelopes also support LFOs on segments. The envelopes can be extremely long and also loop independently which making Absynth fantastic for evolving soundscapes.

Note, I am also using an envelope to change the “effect time” of the Pipe Effect which is a unique audio effect within Absynth. P. 88 of the manual describes it best “Let’s take the image of a string. A loudspeaker (a contact loudspeaker) is connected to a string, which begins to vibrate as a result. You can determine the position of this virtual loudspeaker on the string via the parameter Input Position. Above the string are two pickups, similar to an E-Guitar. The pickups’ positions can be determined through the parameter Output Positions. Changing those two parameters can be compared with changing two microphones. You can modulate the string’s length and the pickups’ position through the LFOs or a MIDI Controller. This way, various flanging, pitch-shifting and rotary speaker effects can be achieved. These effects are particularly apparent when the modulation of the pickups are modulated in op¬posite directions.”

 

 

Enjoy,

Mark Mosher
Synthesist, Composer, Performer | Boulder, CO
MarkMosherMusic.com

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(Modulate This) Brian Clevinger Synth: Absynth

Absynth Creator Brian Clevinger Posts One-Note Soundscape to Accompany the Mayan Apocalypse

 

Brian Clivinger just posted this fantastic one-note soundscape patch “made with Native Instruments Absynth 5 to accompany the mayan apocalypse”. It really shows what can be done with those amazing 68-stage modulatable envelopes!

Enjoy, and talk to you tomorrow :^)

Mark Mosher
Synthesist, Composer, Performer
www.MarkMosherMusic.com

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(Modulate This) Synth: Absynth

Absynth 5 Synthesizer Envelope Editing Tips

One of the best features of Absynth 5 are the 68 breakpoint envelopes. If you’ve mainly been shaping envelopes by dragging breakpoints around with your mouse here are some tips on adding even more character and expression to your envelopes.

Type in Breakpoint Times

image

You can set the time for a breakpoint manually by entering the number of seconds for the break point. The Abs/BP switch determines the position of the breakpoint on the timeline. From p. 116 in the manual:

Abs/BP Time control: Determines the Breakpoint’s position on the time axis. Enter the duration in seconds. Depending on the setting of the BP Time Toggle on its left, you can either enter the duration since the previous Breakpoint (Bp sec) or since the beginning of the Envelope (Abs sec).

This is such a cool feature because you can not only be very precise but you can create extremely long envelope segments adding subtle motion and character.

Add LFOs and Modulate Breakpoints

I used Absynth quite a while before I bothered to click on the LFO and Control tabs. Using these tabs you can add LFO’s to envelope segments and modulate Amp and Time of a breakpoint using controllers.

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More Tips on Absynth

Mark Mosher
Electronic Music Artist, Boulder, CO
Official Web Site: www.MarkMosherMusic.com
Listen/Download Albums: www.MarkMosherMusic.com/music.html
www.ModulateThis.com

Categories
Ableton Live Synth: Absynth

Mark Mosher VLog #1 – Creating the patch “Broken Crystals” with Absynth 5’s new Cloud Filter

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In addition to creating tutorial videos, I’ve decided to start a Video Log. Tutorials are very time consuming to produce as they are scripted and require a lot of planning – not to mention time to edit and produce. My video log will be much more casual and it will be a little more like your just looking over my shoulder while I create electronic music and sound.

I’m also working out ways to shoot live video in my studio so I can also add videos that show how I’m using my Tenori-On, APC40, Percussa Audio Cubes, and other controllers.

As always, I’m hoping the content in these videos can help inspire your creativity and save you time with your projects.

For my first entry, I’ve posted a video where I discuss the creation of a patch using the new cloud filter feature in Absynth 5. There is also a tip for Ableton users within this video.

Watch embeded video on YouTube.

http://www.youtube.com/v/f1RpiGAXHSM&hl=en_US&fs=1&&hl=en</embed></object></div>";” src=”https://modulatethis.files.wordpress.com/2010/01/c33dd-6a00d83451cae869e20120a7bc6cee970b-pi.jpg&#8221; style=”BORDER-BOTTOM-STYLE: none; BORDER-RIGHT-STYLE: none; BORDER-TOP-STYLE: none; BORDER-LEFT-STYLE: none” />

Mark Mosher
Electronic Music Artist, Composer, Sound Designer
Louisville/Denver/Boulder

http://www.modulatethis.com
http://www.markmoshermusic.com
http://www.twitter.com/markmosher

image
Download/Buy my album REBOOT on Bandcamp
Buy on iTunes

Categories
Ableton Live APC40 AudioCubes iPhone/iPod/iTunes Max for Live Midi/USB Keyboards & Controllers Synth: Alchemy Synth: DCAM: Synth Squad Synth: Gladiator Synth: Harmless Synth: Synlpant Synth: u-he ACE

Modulate This! – Best of 2009 Electronic Music Tech

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Despite the economic downturn, 2009 was thankfully a huge year when it came to new technology for electronic music artists. Rather than try and cover every significant release, I’ll instead list some of my favorite products and notable trends.

The Year of Abletonimage
What a big year for Ableton. Live 8 with great new features set, Max for Live, 10th Anniversary of Ableton, launch of Live Intro, dedicated hardware controllers (APC40 & Launchpad). Awesome!

Grid (Matrix) Controllers
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Grid controllers everywhere in 2009. New controllers like the APC40, Launchpad and Bliptronics 5000. Continued development with existing controllers like Tenori-On and Monome. The grid metaphor also became quite prevalent in apps as well. I have the APC40 and Tenori-On and simply love them.

Percussa Audio Cubes “Tangible Interface”
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Not new in 2009 but new to me, Percussa AudioCubes are self-powered wireless computer systems. Cubes can detect and interact with each other and can detect the proximity of your hand near a cube face sensor and send this controller information to your DAW or to various free software apps provided by Percussa. I working with a 4 cube configuration within Ableton Live.

Fantastic Synths
A great year for virtual instruments. Below is a list of new and updates synths that I used over and over again in 2009 for both sound design and for music performance.

  • u-he ACE (Any Cable Anywhere)

    This synth just released by I use it all the time now! It’s a fantastic virtual analog synth with a great UI with patch cables. Sounds like butta’.
Categories
(Modulate This) Sampling

A Video Roundup of Sampling Past and Present

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I’ve been sampling since the 80’s when I got an Ensoniq Mirage. I’ve since moved on to software and now use Ableton Sampler, and Camel Audio Alchemy for sample-based work these days. I still find sample-based sound design fascinating and recently found some cool videos which illustrate how far we’ve come over the last few decades.

PAST
First, I stumbled across a Synthtopia Post “Bob Moog Introduces The Fairlight CMI” which had four videos, one of which is shown below. “Bog Moog Fairlight Part 2 on YouTube:

http://www.youtube.com/v/ydxFc6o64WA&hl=en_US&fs=1&&hl=en</embed></object></div>";” src=”https://modulatethis.files.wordpress.com/2009/12/7ff2b-6a00d83451cae869e20120a6fbf730970b-pi.jpg&#8221; style=”BORDER-BOTTOM-STYLE: none; BORDER-RIGHT-STYLE: none; BORDER-TOP-STYLE: none; BORDER-LEFT-STYLE: none” />

Next is a great video of Peter Gabriel using the Fairlight in 1982. The video has some awesome footage of Peter Grabriel and company recording found sound and manipulating sound from the Farilight. He also discusses the use of non-lyrical human voice in music.

http://www.youtube.com/v/ON8lVgJxMQA&hl=en_US&fs=1&&hl=en</embed></object></div>";” src=”https://modulatethis.files.wordpress.com/2009/12/a0dac-6a00d83451cae869e2012875fe3b09970c-pi.jpg&#8221; style=”BORDER-BOTTOM-STYLE: none; BORDER-RIGHT-STYLE: none; BORDER-TOP-STYLE: none; BORDER-LEFT-STYLE: none” />

Next a 1984 video with Quincy Jones and Herbie Hancock.

http://www.youtube.com/v/n6QsusDS_8A&hl=en</embed></object></div>";” src=”https://modulatethis.files.wordpress.com/2009/12/df852-6a00d83451cae869e2012875fe3b12970c-pi.jpg&#8221; style=”BORDER-BOTTOM-STYLE: none; BORDER-RIGHT-STYLE: none; BORDER-TOP-STYLE: none; BORDER-LEFT-STYLE: none” />

PRESENT
Using found sound with Absynth.

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Next is a nice tutorial video of using Alchemy to create a multisampled instrument.

http://www.youtube.com/v/NTWobD4Bgus&hl=en_US&fs=1&&hl=en</embed></object></div>";” src=”https://modulatethis.files.wordpress.com/2009/12/10b10-6a00d83451cae869e20120a6fbf751970b-pi.jpg&#8221; style=”BORDER-BOTTOM-STYLE: none; BORDER-RIGHT-STYLE: none; BORDER-TOP-STYLE: none; BORDER-LEFT-STYLE: none” />

Last, a video of Robert Henke using my favorite Ableton Sampler:

http://www.youtube.com/v/s7Wityxkkjs&hl=en_US&fs=1&&hl=en</embed></object></div>";” src=”https://modulatethis.files.wordpress.com/2009/12/fc201-6a00d83451cae869e20120a6fbf75d970b-pi.jpg&#8221; style=”BORDER-BOTTOM-STYLE: none; BORDER-RIGHT-STYLE: none; BORDER-TOP-STYLE: none; BORDER-LEFT-STYLE: none” />

Mark Mosher
Electronic Music Artist, Composer, Sound Designer
Louisville/Denver/Boulder

http://www.modulatethis.com
http://www.markmoshermusic.com
http://www.twitter.com/markmosher

image
Download/Buy my album REBOOT on Bandcamp
Buy on iTunes
Buy on Amazon MP3