PEMF Sessions: Pilot from Primus Luta on Vimeo.

It’s a bit trippy as you make your way through the opening of this video, which features a spooky song and, awesomely, a hooded man who has replaced his face with a certain hit open source controller. (“Darling, wake up, you’re shouting the names of Max/MSP patches again in your sleep!” / “I was dreaming – and I saw that man again. The man with the Monome for a face! He said – he said there’s something I must do. Where’s my MacBook?”)

Ahem. Get past that bit, and your reward is some deliciously sharp Monome virtuosity from Primus Luta:

For the pilot episode of the PEMF (Personal Electro-Magnetic Field) Sessions I go to work on The Roots "Criminal" Remix called "Break the Law." It’s a more dub than step take on the song featuring a firsthand look at the process of creation using the Heads Instruments. Specifically looking at the nsMpLR, strgs and prcs.

It’s a remix here, but naturally you could apply this to any production technique. It’s amazing how freeing the simple process of mapping musical elements to a grid of buttons can be. That would tend to confirm my suspicion that, somewhere at its soul, the Monome is a HyperMPC – an MPC with a lot more buttons, extended by everything a computer can do.

Tool of choice in this case: the wildly underrated modular patching environment / music host, Plogue Bidule.

Good stuff. If this is just the pilot episode, I can’t wait to see what’s coming. (But does Primus Luta get off the island? And is he one of the final Cylons?)

Primus Luta’s site:

Monome official site (yep, CDM aka me will be heading to welcome them to their new Catskills barn!)

Along similar lines, a New Yorker story this week looks at Monome user Flying Lotus, and “Steven Ellison’s atomization of hip-hop.” What better to work on your atomization than the ultimate minimalist digital grid of pads? (Interestingly, he uses a lowly M-Audio Trigger Finger alongside for more conventional pads. Saying this “brings back the physical gesture of the drum” seems a stretch. I’d say it brings back the physical gesture of the Poke, recalling a time when primitive Man sat around poking his significant other – ah, yes, in fact, that’s a tradition I generally keep alive.)

Previous Monoming on CDM