MNKINO Film Fest: Familiar Pavement with Aaron Marx

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On August 13 I had the pleasure of performing an original film score to picture at the Landmark Center in St. Paul for MNKINO Film Fest 2015. The event featured more than twenty short films with original scores. Most of the scores were performed to the films by a talented orchestra assembled for the event. I wrote and performed the music for the film Familiar Pavement by Aaron Marx.

Performing my four minutes of electronic to the film in real time was quite challenging. I did not use any time lock, relying on the original BPM and finding a good starting point to get the timing right. What made the timing critical (and a little tricky) was that I had processed the original film audio with filters and reverb so that it sat well within the arrangement. However, once I found a good marker in the film and practiced it several times I was well prepared.

The original score used the DSI Tempest for all the drums and the Elektron Analog Four for bass, pads, and an arpeggio. The melody line was sequenced on the Analog Four control voltage track and played on a Korg Monotribe (if you didn’t know that was possible read this). At the event I added the Moog Sub 37 to the setup so I could harmonize and embellish the melody lines.

Synth Wall Mix #4

Here’s another offering from experiments concocted in my studio. I created this piece with no overdubbing. All tracks were recorded simultaneously. Post-production was limited to editing for length, fades, and one reverb send.

Rule Based Electronic Music: Good Morning Mr. Paik

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For the sixth piece in the series I left out the percussive layers. This was also a test for the MIDI output mod that I recently applied to the Volca Keys. The setup included the Volca Keys MIDI output (mod) going to the MIDI input of the Novation Bass Station II. To sync the Monotribe I ran the sync out from the Volca Keys to the Monotribe. This can be problematic because there’s some crosstalk between the audio and sync out ports on the Volcas. Keeping the level of the Volca Keys just under full prevents stuttering on the Monotribe, but I’d like to find a better solution.

I also followed these rules: 1) No overdubbing. All tracks were recorded at the same time. 2) No computer sequencing. All sequencing was on the instruments used. 3) No looping or shuffling parts in post. Editing for length and content was allowed. 4) One reverb send, one delay, and fades were allowed. No other processing. 5) No mix tricks in post. Reverse and rolls were performed live.

Rule Based Electronic Music: Another Scientific Toy

On this fifth piece within the series the lead was played on the Volca Keys using a MIDI controller allowing for spanning several octaves and applying pitch bend and velocity. To get the intermittent pitch modulation I adjusted the LFO amount during play. Other instruments included the DSI Tempest and Novation Bass Station II.

I also followed these rules: 1) No overdubbing. All tracks were recorded at the same time. 2) No computer sequencing. All sequencing was on the instruments used. 3) No looping or shuffling parts in post. Editing for length and content was allowed. 4) One reverb send, one delay, and fades were allowed. No other processing. 5) No mix tricks in post. Reverse and rolls were performed live.

Rule Based Electronic Music: REPL

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This is the forth piece in a series of rule based electronic compositions. I used the DSI Tempest, Korg Volca Keys, Novation Bass Station II, and Memory Man Delay. I also followed these rules: 1) No overdubbing. All tracks were recorded at the same time. 2) No computer sequencing. All sequencing was on the instruments used. 3) No looping or shuffling parts in post. Editing for length and content was allowed. 4) One reverb send, one delay, and fades were allowed. No other processing. 5) No mix tricks in post. Reverse and rolls were performed live.