March 17, 2011

The Sun Also Rises...

by Chris Randall

As I remarked to someone on AIM last night, my e-mail inbox looks like Half Life 2. Shit is total destruction right now. So in lieu of pondering the complexities of life or ranting (or both) I'm gonna drop some tidbits up in here, and spend the next 12 hours trying to figure out why (Logic User A) can't install (Plugin B). Rinse. Repeat.

First up, Goldbaby drops an interesting new set on us, in the form of the iAm k3m package. I'm downloading this bad boy as we speak. It is, as the name implies, a sample set of the Kawai K3m. I've never owned one of these synths, but lately I've been curious; I kept coming across mentions of it when we were researching for the Phosphor project. Now I can see what all the hubbub is about.

Next up, and still in Sample-Land, Puremagnetic is running a deal where, if you donate for Japanese Tsunami relief via the SxSW site, they'll give you a subscription to match your donation. $30 gets you 6 months access to their basic sample library and $60 gets you a year. Do the second one, as you'll need all that time to download the fairly gigantic quantity of sample sets you get access to. Micah & co. have a knack for rolling out some weird shit that I like and use often.

And finally, I've been digging on Stereognosis lately. This is an interesting mix of modern electronic music (which is funny, because all music is electronic nowadays, but you know what I mean) production and (mostly) middle-eastern instrumentation. I particularly like track 2, Blaglama Boxer, a YouTube rendition of which you can find here. Jeremy Highhouse, who posts here as Cutter Filtoff, and is the other half of the perpetually tardy RT60 project, did a lot of the work on this album. Worth a listen.


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Mar.17.2011 @ 11:04 AM
Dammit, I've been looking for a K3 for a while but been too lazy/cheap to bother pulling the trigger on one. Now the internets know.


Mar.17.2011 @ 11:24 AM
Computer Controlled
Heh, i'm trying to build an editor on my iPad using S1MIDI Trigger for my K3, but can't figure out how the SysEx part works. At the same time, my K3 is for sale...


It really is a nice sounding synth. Very dark, moody. It sounds much better than its basic architecture makes it out to be. You can also create your own waveform using the very last wave slot.

Mar.17.2011 @ 12:27 PM
I have a rackmount K3m and have used it extensively for the past 20 years. My go-to bass preset (#10) hasn't been been touched since I first programmed the thing back in the late 80s! Got a couple instances of the K3m in this song: bass and doodly-square-wave sequence:
link []
I had no idea anyone other than me liked that synth.

Mar.17.2011 @ 6:47 PM
OT but on Topic also...

this freeware jammy is nice and crisp.. SQ80 clone..

link []

im ducking now for the correlation to the Kawai if they are not in the same fam.

Mar.17.2011 @ 8:38 PM
Computer Controlled
That's a great bit o' software! The ESQ-1/SQ-80 are also really great synths!

Mar.17.2011 @ 10:17 PM
My friends from the local belly dancing troupe will enjoy this.

Mar.18.2011 @ 4:43 AM
Being more of a traditional world music aficionado, I do like finding more contemporary music like this that isn't bent into, or forced against, equal temperament. That reminds that I still have Crossing the Bridge: The Sound of Istanbul with Alexander Hacke on my DVR. I like that one a lot.

Mar.18.2011 @ 10:08 AM
D' MacKinnon
Nice, I'm digging on Stereognosis. My wife and her friends are in the belly dancing scene, I'll pass this along to them.

Mar.18.2011 @ 10:25 AM
I've been using my SQ-80 more recently. Compared to most of the soft synths I've tried, I think it sounds fat and warm.

I need to replace the SQ-80's internal battery if I don't want to lose any sequence data when the power is off. So I received a new battery but now I have the task of soldering it myself or hauling it into EARS in Manhattan. EARS are great guys with an impressive amount of knowledge and gear. link [] They've cleaned and repaired a few old Roland pieces for me over the years. But replacing a battery seems like something I could do myself. I'm guessing it would be at least $100 for them to do it. Plus the pain of driving the keyboard into NYC. I'll probably give the soldering a shot this weekend...

Too bad they don't make that SQ-80 VST in a Mac format. I'd be curious to hear it in action.

Mar.18.2011 @ 4:05 PM
@ Unitard...there is a very hard way to do it with Jack or wine according to the guys page.... sounds about as fun as getting kicked in the balls though.

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