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Topics - Julio Di Benedetto

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1
Music Gearheads Tech Talk / Moog Factory Tour.
« on: June 13, 2017, 02:01:30 PM »
Went to Asheville, North Carolina in May for some mountains & trees but did not know that Bob Moog had setup shop in Asheville. I have owned my Minimoog Voyager synthesizer for a year or so. The tour was the the highlight of the trip. The tour is free and lasts about an hour.

The Moog factory is right in downtown Asheville which struck my as similar to Greenwich Village, NYC in appearance and vibe.






The Moog Mother 32 (Eurorack) Synthesizer assembly line.....The "Mother" boards arrive already soldered so completing a Mother takes about an hour and a half.

The gentleman in blue is the tour guide who was full of interesting stories such as how the original Minimoog Model D was so powerful and deep that it was capable of inducing labor which is what happened when Geddy Lee's wife was very pregnant and happened to be at a Rush concert sound check when Mr Lee fired off his minimoog. Ambulance was called and their first child was born shortly after......Great story!








The Moog Sub 37 assembly line.....apparently their best sell synth.





The Minimoog Model D assembly line.....The lady at the back installs all the electronics, the man sitting works on just the mod wheel and pitch bend, apparently it is quiet involved to get right and the standing fellow finishes the synth. This is obviously the recreation of the original Model D and is the only minimoog in production as the Moog Voyage is not made anymore.

The Model D is made with about 95% sourced US materials....the birch wood comes from Tennessee, a good deal of the electronics are made locally in Asheville. Bob Moog established an electronics engineering course at a local Asheville college that a large amount of Moog employees have come through.







Minimoog burn in bench......All Minis are turned on for 24 hours and tested to be properly functioning.




The Moog Modular Synthesizer production line.....creation of these are slow. These two guys install and connect all the modules into their cases. The modules are built in another building. One modular was having a spring reverb installed as we came through and what appeared to be an small ordinary guitar amp was turned up......have to say I have never heard anything like it. It was not that the sound was loud it was that the sound penetrated everything and filled the factory with a sonic presence beyond description.







This building is where the Moog Modular Modules are made and custom work. It also houses the Moog Sound Lab Studios......graphic on the window is Keith Emerson's Modular.






Just outside the Sound Lab and the Lab itself. This was the end of the tour and where we could ask questions......I had many like was Moog going to make Eurorack versions of their big Modular but only asked one. "What was the chance of Moog making a polyphonic instrument like the Memorymoog?"
the answer....."There is always a chance."

We did not get to see the R&D departments where sixteen engineers work on the future of Moog instruments.......top secret.







On my way out I saw this little...shrine I guess.......can you recognized the people in the photographs?






It was an emotion experience and just such a cool place......there were many good pictures to be had but I would have missed much.  Their current philosophy seems to be taking the best of Moogs past and bring it into the present.....

2
Music Gearheads Tech Talk / A new soft synth worth looking at.
« on: April 14, 2017, 05:28:10 AM »


Spitfire Audio are one of the premier sample library developers today and are in heavy use in film scoring around the world.  They have come up with this new soft synth in conjunction with trance producer/ film composer BT.

Website......http://www.spitfireaudio.com/shop/a-z/bt-phobos/

Here's a walk through demonstrating the synth.


3


Amazing movie that I highly recommend if you have not seen it.  This is a fascinating look at the making of the film score to Arrival

The composer Johann Johannson is score the upcoming Blade Runner movie  8)


I replace the original video with this similar one. 4/23/17

4
Came across this eArtical....seem to touch on some concerns and possibilities....Discuss

Music rarely exists in a vacuum. From classical concert programs and 12-track albums to DIY mixtapes and personal record shelves, we imbue songs with new meaning by connecting them to each other, by treating them as elements of a wider, self-constructed narrative

We are music collectors by design and by necessity—an identity threatened by the rise of streaming.

In previous decades, physical formats like CDs, vinyl, cassettes and 8-tracks required us to limit our music consumption, if only to keep our wallets in shape. We didn’t just throw money and time at music left and right, but rather invested more wisely in a handful of albums and artists, with whom we developed intimate relationships through repeated listens and colorful liner notes. Filling our binders and shelves with these records also facilitated a more positive, aspirational side of our aesthetic identities: we set tangible, attainable goals for our collections, and could show off these works in progress to our friends and family whenever they visited for dinner.

The three recent stages of digital disruption in music — which can be bookmarked by Napster, iTunes and Spotify — have made our collections more public, more granular and more abstract, respectively. Napster is known not only for making recorded music available at no monetary cost, but also for motivating users to share their musical tastes with each other (it’s called file-sharing for a reason). iTunes unbundled the standard album into its individual tracks, enabling users to handpick their favorite songs and assemble a wider-reaching collection with a higher concentration of artists over the same amount of [virtual] surface area. Spotify not only has made musical shelf space infinite, but has also made the term “shelf space” irrelevant: its users own nothing. Instead, they pay for access, shelling out the rough cost equivalent of 12 CDs per year ($9.99 a month) to peruse millions of songs at their fingertips.

More significantly, to an extent, streaming services do all of our tedious music collecting work for us. With playlists as our framework, we can think of each streaming service as a unique “collection of collections,” using a distinct philosophy of curation to unpack an otherwise noisy music catalog. Spotify, for instance, touts its algorithmic prowess, pushing fresh, tailored and automated collections like Discover Weekly and Release Radar to its users on a weekly basis. Apple Music prefers to market its “human” curational talent, frequently recruiting celebrity guests like Alexander Wang and Clare Waight Keller to fashion [no pun intended] their own playlists for clout-hungry listeners. Tidal takes pride in its limited reach, snagging exclusive distribution deals with masterpieces like Beyoncé’s Lemonade and Kanye West’s The Life of Pablo.

Any effort on our part to seize control of our music collecting habits away from these streaming services ultimately feels burdensome and futile. Exclusivity clauses à la Tidal make it difficult to consolidate one’s entire online music collection into a single platform without paying for multiple streaming accounts (back in 2009, Eliot Van Buskirk suggested that the music industry build a global, universal, public database of songs to ease this friction between services, a vision that has since fallen through the cracks). The constant push for “discovery” — for maximizing the explorative opportunities enabled by data science — leads more and more streaming users to consume music like the average internet user consumes news: as brief sound bites that barely have time to breathe before being engulfed by new content.

All of these factors lead to a new type of digital music fan and collector: one who prioritizes breadth over depth, who sees collecting as performative rather than inquisitive, and who defines their tastes more by the how (the streaming services) than by the what (the songs). This profile presents a challenge for the music business in drawing attention away from music creators, the very lifeblood of the industry. Indeed, while streaming makes it easier for artists to reach potential new fans, it also makes it even more difficult to retain a group of loyal listeners.

After all, it is important to realize that we mourn music not when a song falls off the charts, nor when a streaming service fails to break even, but when we lose an artist. In 2016 alone, we said some of our most painful goodbyes as a collective music community to prominent figures like George Michael, Leonard Cohen, Prince and David Bowie. Unfortunately, deaths are the only opportunity many listeners have to dive deep into an artist’s background and life story. In contrast, artist profiles on streaming services remain sparse, providing no context or biographical information aside from their discography and a list of related artists. While music streaming is better for the consumer from the perspective of time- and geography-based access, convenience should not erode connection.

6
Music Gearheads Tech Talk / TC Electronic VSS3 Native Reverb is here
« on: January 11, 2017, 08:47:46 AM »
I have waited a long time for this.....my powercore pci express card is long gone and this was and still is my favorite reverb that has not been available until now unless one has a 4000 unit or their flagship 6000.

Word was the UA was going to port the TC software over and that may still happen but this is exciting to have a Native version :)



http://www.tcelectronic.com/vss3-native/

7
Music Gearheads Tech Talk / Waves End of year Sale
« on: December 29, 2016, 10:45:25 AM »
The Price drop on all of their plugins is crazy.  I once used their Renaissance plugins like 10 years ago but never upgrade because of the hefty $200 fee. 

For example the Renaissance bundle is now $149, my upgrade fee I just payed was $79 for a bundle that lists at $399. 

Really good prices on individual plugins as well......http://www.waves.com

9
Hello fellow gearheadz......for a long while I have said no, software cannot do analog and please understand the most exciting things currently happening are in the digital domain "soft und hard", so this is no analog snobbery :)

I have had my Oberhiem Matrix 12 for for about 8 years and it has been and still is for me the most amazing piece of kit to play on. 

Arturia have done a software version of Matrix 12 synth...perhaps familiar to some. Well, watching this video I have to say the software really shines.

The Matrix 12 is a huge synth in size and yet you only have primarily six knobs to turn, so even though its massive its not in architecture yet it works brilliantly, it actually helps you to focus on one central area......ok, enough, Im drifting here, yet in a way this limited interactivity of the physical synth may makes it software friendly.

Take a look at the video and brush up on your Japanese. ;)

 

10


This is so cool and perhaps controversial in that a music icon is given the highest recognition for his words. 

Never a fan so I have not really got into his poetry but at 75 years old he still performs a 100 plus concerts a year.

11
Everything and Nothing / 1001 Post on the Hypnos Forum.
« on: October 11, 2016, 04:25:01 PM »
I said to my self if the day ever came that I made more than a thousand posts and in the interim squandered all those precious hours I would abbreviate my name to....JDB, like APK, JKN or ffcal.  Or do we live in an abbreviated culture so we can compact ourself into symbols :o....Ok I'll shut up :)

12
Everything and Nothing / Hurricane Mathew
« on: October 06, 2016, 03:17:52 PM »
Well it looks like Mathew will make landfall in my neck of the woods in Florida around 11pm tonight.

Ive been through 3 hurricane back in 2004/5.  This fella is in a different league , a beast at category 4...140 mph sustained winds for around 3-4 hours. Dame, Ive never ever driven that fast.

Cooking a nice dinner with a good Rioja wine before the power goes out and a smokey single malt whisky malt to see me through the fury of mother nature.

Talk to you all on the other side!





 

13
Music Gearheads Tech Talk / Exponential Audio's new Nimbus Reverb
« on: September 27, 2016, 03:36:53 PM »
Fall seems to be the time for reverb sales and new releases.



I have their Phoenixverb, its a beauty.

Michael Carnes, the man behind this software had much to do with Lexicon reverbs.

The upgrade path is attractive at $99 for a short while

Link: http://www.exponentialaudio.com/nimbus

14
Music Gearheads Tech Talk / Metric Halo plugin Sale
« on: September 20, 2016, 03:58:25 AM »
Metric Halo Verb on sale....$25, usually $179.  If your looking for a new verb for Mac & Windows.....http://mhsecure.com/mhdirect/product.php?productid=62


15
Everything and Nothing / Nobody Cares about your Photography!
« on: August 03, 2016, 04:27:28 PM »
Im considering a camera purchase and was checking the web for info and stumble across this fellow who impressed me......and where you see photography in the title, put your chosen creative form of expression.


16
personally I have always enjoyed long tracks that develop over time, how much time is a matter of preference.  A cd will give more or less 72 minutes of time to use.....downloads presumably infinite.

recently a good deal of my listening has been rather short track times...in a way snapshots, not fully developed or refined but more here it is now....this is not a criticism or a slight on musical quality and production, on the contrary it is all superb. perhaps when I say not fully developed Im referencing myself who enjoys taking the music I make and really working it outwards to see how far I can go.  early eno ambient for discussion sake has always been on the short side....so

an album of snapshots can make up a unique whole...a deep immersion of limited change is another experience and maybe monotonus to some.  Beauty is in the eye of the beholder!

perhaps this has more to do with our changing listening patterns and attention span as we (the world) is bombarded from without in our everyday life.

your thoughts are most welcome.

17
Firstly a big thanks to all of you from across the pond who paid the high shipping costs to have my music physically in hand.  In the future I hope to have more cd's at Databloem but for now "A tide Pool of Memories" and the latest release "Original Light." are available in Europe.

All the best.....Julio

http://databloem.com/home/935-julio-di-benedetto-a-tide-pool-of-memories.html

http://databloem.com/home/934-julio-di-benedetto-original-light.html

18
Music Gearheads Tech Talk / The Modular Synthesizer Thread
« on: January 26, 2016, 05:59:14 AM »
With the most incredible explosion of popularity in the history of the modular synthesizer primarily driven recently by the Eurorack system its time for a dedicated modular synth thread.

All modulars are welcome here.....what you had, what you have and what you dream of having.

19
Forum Member Projects News and Promotion / Modular Musings
« on: January 18, 2016, 06:15:01 AM »

Modular Musings

This project is sort of a sonic blog based on the recordings of my new eurorack modular synthesizer.  These experiments are works in progress that I hope will evolve as I learn and come to understand the full potential of this system.  It is complexed and challenging as well as liberating without the restraints of the black and white keyboard.

I approached these first sounds without any idea of what I wanted or what to expect and it is proving to be an exciting way to work.  As a musician I have created a sonic palette that has grown into what one could call “my sound” which is still very organic and not fixed but I do recognize it nevertheless.  This is not so with the modular sound world as it is always surprising, ever changing and can disappear with the simplest twist of a knob.  There is no memory, nothing can be saved.  When creating a patch you have to risk loosing it and it happens often, in fact working for hours, for days to have the whole patch collapse into a sonic cacophony of mayhem is really the only way to go, you cant go back  only forward and is never the same.

At some moment the patch feels ready to record and this takes place not because I like what Im hearing, thats its good or the sounds are what I was after, its much more that what Im hearing is fascinating and quite the opposite of anything I may have expected and for me this is where I grow and learn as boundaries are crossed and new horizons discovered.

The patches I have put up on my soundcloud page are live performances and are recorded straight to disk....https://soundcloud.com/digitalvoices/sets/modular-musings

I would like to point you to the main inspiration for this project…..Taylor Deupree’s Studio Diary’s.  I was so taken by the sounds and idea here and how he was able to create music with a modular synthesizer that generally wants to rain down sonic chaos, was instead patched to express quiet, gentle and beautiful soundscapes.  Heres a link I posted about this....http://www.hypnos.com/smf/index.php?topic=8337.0

Its early days so I really cant say where this project will lead but I will let you know as more recordings are upload and worthy of your attention.

Enjoy!

20
Other Ambient (and related) Music / CD Shipping costs.
« on: January 03, 2016, 07:36:50 AM »
It seems to me shipping cds from the usa across the pond have become quite high, almost the cost of the actual cd being shipped. My own experience is about $10 +- to ship my cds to most of Europe which I actually charge $7 and absorb the loss in the hope to encourage cd sales.

I notice Databloem charges a flat rate of 5 Euros.

So what is the solution......? 

If artists and Labels go to the trouble and expense of producing physical media I would think we would want to do whatever to promote and not deter people by high shipping costs.....Is get a European distributer the answer? 

If you feel to please share your experiences.

Thanks.

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