Modular wireless music BLOCKS for iOS are ROLI’s next big idea

UK music startup ROLI are on one heck of a roll. And they’re slowly becoming a laboratory for trying out genuinely new ideas for music making – finally breaking the mold of an industry that often relishes nostalgia. Now, ROLI’s got the engineering, acquiring plug-in maker FXpansion and cross-platform development architecture JUCE. They’ve got the […]

Watch Music Made from Clicky Keyboards

Click. It’s incredible how much sound is part of our world, sometimes in ways so profound we actually somehow miss them. Tech site The Verge wanted to spice up a story on the anniversary of IBM’s Model M keyboard, a product for which sound was an integral part of the experience. (That’s so true, in […]

The Best-Sounding Brass Instrument Tech Makes No Sound At All: Yamaha’s Latest Silent Brass

One thing you mostly can’t do with brass instruments is play them listening through … headphones. And that’s a big deal when you’re practicing, of course. There just hasn’t been a good way to do it without bothering other people. Enter Yamaha. (Yes, it’s no big surprise that a country associated with tiny, closely-adjacent apartments […]

Happy Halloween, From Bleepy Monster Electronics Everywhere [Time Warp Gallery]

Let’s do the Time Warp again. As far as synthesizers making spooky sounds are concerned, I’m pleased to party every day like it’s Halloween. (After all, what is the point of music electronics if not to scare small children, animals, and… adults?) But I want to take us back to 2007, when our friends at […]

Messe Oddities: Pioneer Steelz Audio Type T Automates Dance Battles

I’m immediately attracted to things I can’t identify, so here’s one of the less expected bits of hardware from the Frankfurt Musikmesse show’s digital audio 5.1 hall. (That’s the hall’s actual number – surround sound similarity is coincidental.) Someone at Pioneer worked out how to combine the timer used in chess, the boombox, some DJ […]

Not a Tablet: Android-Powered Touch Music Keyboard is Just for Music

Looking a bit like the love child of a Nintendo DS and a microKORG, the Miselu neiro is a different animal in mobile music. The upcoming device is powered by Android and has a touchscreen – a bit like a tablet – but it’s hardware dedicated to music-making, complete with a compact, piano-layout keyboard. The […]

It’s a PA! It’s a Suitcase! It’s a Chair! It’s All Three?!

You might need to be an internationally-touring DJ to buy one, at EUR750, but the Travelteq Trip Sound suitcase is awe-inspiring at least as a design gimmick. The aluminum roll-around is designed first and foremost as a suitcase, as in the things that hold your laptop and clothes when you’re on the road, and is […]

Take a Solar-Powered Tuner Wherever You Go, Says Tascam … But Environmental?

Sure, we spend a lot of time looking at far-out gear and high technology, but you have to tip your hat to practicality. Tascam’s TC-1S is a compact, portable tuner that you can take anywhere. Solar and USB power mean you never have to worry about powering it, either. Features: 12-tone equal-tempered chromatic tuner. Input […]

Tascam’s New $99 Portable Stereo Recorder, with Pitch Control

There was a time when Tascam was associated with cheap, solid mobile gear for recording, like the Portastudio. The handheld DR-03 could be a landmark for a more digital age. It’s just US$99 for a microSD recorder with built-in stereo mic in a package Tascam describes as “smaller than an energy bar.” It’s designed to […]

Electronic Music, Unplugged: Battery-Powered Jams and the Decade of Power

Photo (CC-BY) Anton Fomkin. No endorsement intended. (I like Energizer, too.) If the last decades in technology were about speed, this decade promises to be about power. I don’t mean horsepower: I mean power as in electricity. From concerns environmental to practical, power is now a real variable. After years of misreading Moore’s Law to […]