31 August, 2005
Stress and music
I've just finished a new track: Dark in here [ogg|mp3]. I really want a theremin, but I'm too cheap to buy one and too busy to make one. The theremin-like sound in this track is just a pitch-bent sine wave.
People on LAU keep asking me for more info on how I make tracks so, for the curious, all the samples are in dih_samps.ogg.
27 August, 2005
24 August, 2005
20 August, 2005
Long time, no blog
The problem hasn't been that nothing interesting's happened. In fact, it's quite the opposite - I've had too much to do to sit and write about doing it.
So, in no order whatsoever...
Playing games for your soul
I found out recently that my great uncle Archie was a card sharp. He wore a suit, trilby and white cravat and usually had a carnation in his button-hole. Add his thin black moustache and really, it should have been obvious to anyone who gave him more than a glance that he was an expert in making what was yours into his.
Apparently, he couldn't play cards in the Midlands because of his infamy at card marking and counting.
He was also a story-teller. I never met him, but a few of his tales have been related to me and my favourite is this:
He also had a story about winning a cup for bravery after he single-handedly stopped a dangerous horse on the loose. When asked where the cup was, he pointed to the chrome sugar bowl.
I love to read magazines like Future Music, daydreaming about all the boxes with knobs on that I would buy if I had the money.
I make music with nothing but software, but I'd love to have something physical to play with. Something that wouldn't judder as it decided to swap pages to disk.
And yet software synthesis is becoming more and more popular - there seem to be more software synths coming out each year now than hardware ones. Professionals are using them more and more, ditching the expensive racks of pretty lights for something that isn't even "real" - nothing but a pattern of 1's and 0's that you have to pray doesn't dissolve, break, disappear or get trashed in its transcription. The real problem with software like this is that you can only use so much of it - every effect or synthesiser uses up resources, and is liable to judder.
I don't like it.
Anyway, all that just leads up to my Big Idea. Synthesisers made of reusable hardware. No, not a modular synth. And no, not something for hosting software instruments/effects.
What I want is an FPGA on a PCI card, with synths or effects written using something like csound as a HDL.
The whole thing sounded like so much fun, I bought cheap FPGA to play with and see how it could be done.
I had an interview for a position as a lecturer in the new Digital Entertainment and Creativity department. Despite the way I talk continuously, tell jokes and generally act a prat when I'm nervous, I got the job.
More music: Fling.[ogg|mp3].
The snare pops a little too much, but I'm fed up with messing with it now.