Professor David Wessel Has Died

david-wesselProfessor David Wessel, Director of the Center for New Music and Audio Technologies  (CNMAT) at the University of California at Berkeley, passed away on October 13, 2014, at the age of 73.

Wessel was a musician, composer and mentor to many electronic and computer musicians. He was also known to some as “The Patron Saint of MaxMSP”.

CNMAT invites those in the Bay Area to come by on Friday, October 17, between the hours of 1 p.m. to 6 p.m., to share stories and celebrate Wessel’s life. The Main Room at CNMAT will be open to all those who wish to visit.

Friends and colleagues are leaving their memories of Wessel on his Facebook page.

“He shaped the lives of so many of the graduate students at Berkeley with his tremendous generosity as a thinker, interlocutor, listener, teacher, performer, and cook,” notes Yale assistant professor of music Brian Kane. “The great, electronic music studio in the sky just got a new director.” Continue reading

The Beatdown Step Sequencer For Akai APC40

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Sonic Faction has introduced The BeatdownThe Beatdown Step Sequencer for the Akai APC40 and Ableton Live.

This custom device comes with the Beatdown library and lets you program beats and note velocities,while saving and recalling patterns in realtime. It also features realtime looping, FX and groove manipulation for killer live performances.

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New Drum Machine For Ableton Live, The Beatdown

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Steve at Sonic Faction sent word about The Beatdown, a new drum machine for Ableton Live:

We crafted The Beatdown from the ground up, giving users superior sound quality and unprecedented control. We started by sampling the Elektron Machine Drum and rebuilding it inside of Ableton, staying true to the instrument’s unique design. Inspired by the flexibility of our new instrument, we then added 6 additional drum kits that cover all of the most popular dance music genres. It’s styles range from Analog Hip Hop madness, to fresh House beats, to viscous Dubstep wobbles and Experimental glitches. The result is a slamming drum machine that will have you dropping next level beats instantly.

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Awesome Oscillographic Synthesizer, de/Rastra, Made From Old TV

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Here’s another cool project from Kyle Evans, creator of the electroacoustic didgeridoo.

The de/Rastra oscillographic synthesizer is a real-time audio/video instrument and computer-interfacing device that lets you generate visualizations intrinsic to cathode ray tube technology while simultaneously creating the acoustic analog of the displayed imagery.

Here’s what Evans has to say about the de/Rastra oscillographic synthesizer:

Through hacking and exploiting the capabilities intrinsic to all CRT devices, the technology becomes repurposed as a performative interface, breaking down the device’s ‘consumption only’ nature. The performer is given control over the technology by removing it from the intended application and forcing it into an active state through a combination of physical and mental effort.

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$25 rePatcher Brings A Patch Matrix To Your Synth Software

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Open Music Labs has introduced rePatcher, an Arduino shield that lets you “patch” your Max/MSP or Pure Data patches with a 6 x 6 patchbay matrix:

So, if you’re tired of hiding behind your laptop while performing amazing electronic music, use rePatcher to show the world exactly what you’re doing on that screen. Explore your creations in an entirely different way, and save yourself the hassle of ‘clicking and dragging’. Or, if you just want a few generic controls and switches that easily integrate into Pure Data, rePatcher will get you there.

rePatcher also has 6 general purpose control knobs for modifying parameters in your patch.

Since rePatcher attaches via USB, it can be hacked to work with any other program that can accept a serial stream.

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Music Robot Makes Beats To Torment Us With After Judgement Day

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Worried about the future of music after the robot overlords take over on Judgement Day?

You should be.

This video captures musical provocateur Daito Manabe demonstrating an experimental robot arm, using Ableton Live and Native Instruments Maschine to make beats.

Unfortunately, their beats are weak. Which means that there’s a future for us – as beatmaking slaves.

via daito

Practical Max – Making A Beat Factory

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In his second set of Practical Max videos, Matthew Davidson, aka Stretta, demonstrates building a ‘sweet-sounding and performance-friendly’ Beat Factory.

Beat Factory slices up and processes drum rhythms in real time.

Watch the Practical Max 2-B video, below, to see inside the Beat Factory Max patch.

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iDensity Brings Desktop Granular Synth Tools To The iPad

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Densitygs has announced iDensity for iPad – a new software synth that brings all the granular synthesis tools of Density/Pulsaret (Mac/Win standalone) to the iPad.

iDensity is real-time software designed for asynchronous sound file granulation, a ‘granular playground’, able to generate a wide range of usual and not so usual effects:

  • time/pitch shifting
  • time/pitch jittering
  • intricate textures
  • grain fountain/pulverizer
  • recording and manipulation of buffers
  • complex scrub pad exploration
  • dynamic envelope shape

iDensity allows you to record audio directly with your iPad mic and load up to nine built-in sound sample or add your own WAV, AIFF, CAF, MP3, M4A or MP3 files via iTunes.

With iDensity it is also possible to record the stereo output (of granulation) into the documents folder while scrubbing in the wavepad or moving granulation parameters in real-time. The mixdown/audio results can then be syncronized with/in iTunes.

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