You’re Doing it Backwards: REV Builds Sound Library Around Reversing Stuff

Soundware remains a massive market. Products fall in the CDM inbox daily. There’s just not so much to talk about – even when the quality is exceptional. There are good products out there, and sampled libraries are especially essential for anyone working on tight deadlines – no matter the joy of recording material, anyone working for markets like TV or film likely needs some assistance satisfying clients in a hurry. It’s just that there’s so much out there, there isn’t always a story. Output is a new sound house out of Los Angeles that found a way to tell a …

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Imagine Digital Shoes: Lovely Short Uses Sound Design Alongside Visual Effects

FLIGHT. from a TWiN thing. on Vimeo. What makes this motion effect work is what you experience when you close your eyes. In a clever short film, the directing team TWiN (Jonathan & Josh Baker) imagine shoes that take on a life of their own, as though channeling forces from Tron. Directing that virtual, digital world into ours, they propel the actor – and perhaps suggest a solution to LA’s transit problems. (Eat your heart out, Segway.) But how do you make such an imaginary vision work? The post-production effects are pretty, but it really takes the sound to deliver …

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Animation: Watch Moog Sub Phatty, Flying Lotus in Psychedelic, Fluid Color

The best music videos don’t just flow well with the pacing and feeling of music. They enhance it. And that’s certainly the case with the work of regular FlyLo collaborator and Adult Swim animator Adam ‘lilfuchs’ Fuchs of Atlanta, Georgia. Add in Moog, and things get seriously trippy for lovers of synthesizers. The resulting short, “Such a Square,” features Flying Lotus-produced sounds, made on a prototype of Moog’s new Sub Phatty synth. The liquid-smooth animation takes us on a psychedelic journey via Bob Moog’s mind, tracing circuitry and patch cords in acid-glowing washes of electric color. It feels like a …

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Dam-Funk gets his own drum machine + sequencer. Photo courtesy Bleep Labs.

Artist Gear: Dam-Drum 2.0 is a Handheld Drum Machine from Bleep Labs, Stones Throw Records [Listen]

You know those science fiction episodes where someone’s personality gets transferred to the computer? Imagine if an artist could do that with a drum machine, and you get the idea behind Dam-Drum. Bleep Labs’ John-Mike Reed of Austin, Texas has a unique talent for engineering fun music electronics. His work is sonically adventurous – always with enough rough edges to keep things interesting – and simultaneously demonstrates an ability to compact designs to their most basic elements, while wrapping everything in a veneer of quirky personality. Yes, of course, his googly-eyed robots the Thingamagoops are immediately cute and anthropomorphic. But …

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Flying Lotus’ Effects-Laden Latest, and the Equally-Entertaining Process Montage

Flying Lotus – Tiny Tortures from dlew on Vimeo. Flying Lotus has been as sensitive to visual expression as to the leadership behind his label and musical circle, but it’s this fall that the rest of the world might know that, as the artist pulls out some music video grand slams. This week, it’s “Tiny Tortures” by director David Lewandowski. If FlyLo’s last album dealt with America’s domestic violence, this one – again, more poetic than preachy – plumbs the USA’s psyche, suggesting baseball dreams to amputation and war injuries. As before, that is channeled into something that feels like …

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Flying Lotus' Effects-Laden Latest, and the Equally-Entertaining Process Montage

Flying Lotus – Tiny Tortures from dlew on Vimeo. Flying Lotus has been as sensitive to visual expression as to the leadership behind his label and musical circle, but it’s this fall that the rest of the world might know that, as the artist pulls out some music video grand slams. This week, it’s “Tiny Tortures” by director David Lewandowski. If FlyLo’s last album dealt with America’s domestic violence, this one – again, more poetic than preachy – plumbs the USA’s psyche, suggesting baseball dreams to amputation and war injuries. As before, that is channeled into something that feels like …

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Three Layers of Live Visuals: Flying Lotus + Strangeloop + Timeboy, In Immersive Scrims

Flying Lotus ‘Layer 3’ – A Red Bull Music Academy Film from Red Bull Music Academy on Vimeo. Immersion isn’t necessarily about big stage pieces, or hiding the performer, or scale, or brightness. It seems it should be about finding a creative connection between visuals and music, between visualists and musicians, and creating some dimension that suggests you’re seeing more than only what you’re seeing. Flying Lotus has long collaborated with Strangeloop and other Southern California visualists. True to his Los Angeles home, his label Brainfeeder routinely sets up cinema-style, laptop artists dwarfed by the big silver screen of the …

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Phoebe in the studio. Photos for CDM courtesy the artist.

Listening, Behind the Scenes: Phoebe Kiddo, Traveling Through Earth and Space

The enchanting, carefully-handcrafted music of Phoebe Kiddo is yet another example of the wonders coming from under-the-radar digital artists in the production Renaissance now underway. We got to host Phoebe on our MusicMakers party last month in Berlin – full coverage of that show, with video, coming soon. Now, Phoebe tells CDM a bit about making music as a globe-trotting nomad, and how she works with monome live and in the studio. Phoebe’s music mixes taut beats and delicate, low-fidelity timbres with dense arrangements and spacey dubs. Her voice cuts dreamy melodic lines across introspective grooves that can then accelerate …

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Control in Mid-Air: Oblong Industries and G-Speak, Gone Gestural [Cinder]

Oblong g-speak from Oblong Industries on Vimeo. Los Angeles-based Oblong are doing some wonderful work with gestural interface design and their own homebrewed tech. I review a bit of what this means for the challenging area of building an entire music app today on Create Digital Music. (I feel if stories aren’t regularly overlapping on the two sites, I’m probably not doing my job.) But it’s worth watching the full videos for graphical evidence of the potential here. The team is working with free creative coding environment Cinder and IR sensing. Oblong Labs from Oblong Industries on Vimeo.

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Frag’mnts – An Enig’matik Records CDM Sampler, Ethno-step Diversity to Hear [Free Listening]

Forget the adage about “dancing about architecture” – talking about music is important. But talking about music is made more meaningful by listening, the real reason we do what we do. And so, we’re pleased to follow our profile of Australia’s Enig’matik Records with a collaborative sampler. It’s a diverse selection of tracks that lets you really hear these musical characters we think are making something worth exploring. Label founder Jake Rose aka Sun In Aquarius came to CDM with the idea, eventually leading to a full compilation to tell a more complete musical story. I’ll let contributor Matt Earp …

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