Wordless Wednesday: Stripes and Boxes

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CatSynth pic: MIDI Kitten :)

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MIDI Cat

Adorable little black kitten checking out its latest composition.

From CallingAllAstronauts on Twitter, via our friend scatterfilter.

If you have a cat-and-gear picture to share, you can always do so by tweeting us @catsynth.

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CatSynth pic: Pumpkin and SK-1

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Submitted by our friend Amber Brien of PAS Musique. Click here to read about their performance in San Francisco last year.

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While my SK-1 does not function as a cat bed, I probably should make better use if it :)

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CatSynth pic: Two on the Keys

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Wordless Wednesday: High Line Ghosts

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High line hipstamatic

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Lucie Vítková and Joe Snape, CNMAT

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Today we look at a recent concert at the Center for New Music and Audio Technologies (CNMAT) featuring two very different solo performances. Both explored subtle details in sound, but in very different ways.

The first performance featured Lucie Vítková, a visiting artist from the Czech Republic. She primarily played accordion, but also included harmonica and voice.

Lucie Vítková

This was not your typical accordion or harmonica performance, or even a typical avant-garde performance with this instruments. Her playing was soft and exquisitely subtle. Once could hear the subtle changes in tone from the bellows, and the percussive effects of the instrument’s mechanics. She brought a similar slow-moving attention to detail to the pieces with harmonica. The most impressive part of the performance combined long accordion tones with voice, producing very strong difference tones. Once could hear the resulting fundamentals inside one’s ear, which is a pretty amazing effect to hear live.

The second set featured Tired Music by Joe Snape for cassette and electronics.

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In a darkened room, Snape manipulated long quiet sounds from cassette recordings and computer-based signal processing. Some were deliberately monotonous, but others provided punctuated detail, including a section of spoken word. As with Vítková’s performance, the sound moved slowly, but more enveloping coming from the multichannel speaker system instead of a single point.

Overall, a different set of sounds, certainly quieter, than what I have been attending of late. I am glad I was able to visit CNMAT to catch this show.

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CatSynth video: Yamaha DX7 DEMO 1 Electric Age REGENERATION

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From paul mangru on YouTube, via matrixsynth.

“The legendary DX7 like few have ever heard it. Ive put my 22 years of experience with FM and the DX7 into this and my other demos to show what is really possiblle.

When you dont believe the myths and go into those parameters. I hope to inspire others to what is really possible with this sonic masterpiece. All my demos are 100% DX7 no software samples or drum machines.”

Spot the cat! Overall, the demo does have that unmistakable 1980s synth sound, which is a bit of a mixed experience for me. Some of those sounds in the intro, however, are awesome and remind us the potential of FM. I do have a TX802 module that never use and a 4-op TX81Z that I sometimes still use.

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Weekend Cat Blogging with Luna: Rain, Disorder, Hunting

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Luna is enjoying a respite from the rain and play-hunting the birds outside on the patio. The stretch of rain is actually a good thing for us, considering that 2013 was the driest year on record for California. It also gives me a chance to concentrate on reorganizing CatSynth HQ, a project that has dragged on for a long time and left things here in a bit of disorder. You can still see a bit of it around Luna in the photo above.

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Wordless Wednesday

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CatSynth pic: Soft Lightning interview with I♥SYNTHS

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Interview with Soft Lightning by I♥SYNTHS.

♥SYNTHS: You love your cats. Are they a big inspiration to your music? What are their names and what synths do they like the most?

Soft Lighting: I actually only have one cat and his name is Ziggy. My wife and I foster litters of kittens for our local shelter so we always have a bunch of new kittens around. They like ALL the synths and ALL the gear – especially hiding in the back of amplifiers.

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There are quite a few more cat-and-synth photos in this post, I suspect a few more of them may show up here as well :)

Via matrixsynth, where you can read all the interviews with well-known synth artists and see quite a bit of classic and modern gear.

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