RPM update: Trieste 116

Yes, this is the second RPM post in a row, but the project has been dominating my outside-of-work life the last few days, at least the parts not taken up with eating, drinking, sleeping and playing with Luna.

Even though I didn't spend a huge amount of time this evening, I think I produced my best track to date, as I described earlier on my RPM blog:

Well, this is the first recording I have made for this project that felt truly inspired – even as I was working on it, I had the feeling “this is going to be really good.” So even if I never release the RPM album to the public as a whole, this piece will be released in some form no matter what.

It is called Trieste 116, and splices together an improvisation done with my favorite custom patch “116” on the DSI Evolver, with excerpts from a live recording of a jazz combo with pennywhistle at Cafe Trieste in San Francisco (yes, that's the famous Beatnik hangout). The Evolver patch features non-linear feedback and filtering only (i.e., no traditional oscillators), and has an unstable flute-like quality that I attempt to blend with the pennywhistle in the Cafe Trieste clips. It all works together, at least for me. Additionally, the track opens with a quiet recording of a Dixieland band, an element I wanted to use somewhere in the album as a New Orleans tribute.

The Cafe Trieste recording as well as the Dixieland band were obtained from the freesound project and released on the Creative Commons Sampling Plus 1.0 License.

Once again, a demo track is available to RPM participants (do any RPM participants read this forum?) via the Sample Engine, just look for “Amar” in the Author column. One can also get a pretty good idea by listening to the October 14, 2006 podcast, which also featured an improvisation using my Evolver patch “116.”

UPDATE: Trieste 116 is up on the front page of RPM today!

I also recommend checking out “Angie Fights Crime”, I had coincidentally looked at them yesterday, too.

New Podcast: Fun w/ Emulator X and freesound.org harmonica samples

I spent a little time yesterday experimenting with modulated loop selection in Emulator X on a variety of sounds. One sound set that I particularly enjoyed playing was a set of blues harmonica samples at freesound created by TexasMusicForge. For those who are not familiar with the freesound project, it is a great collection of user-submitted samples licensed via the Creative Commons. Anyhow, I created a new EX instrument based on these samples and added multiple loops to a couple of them (actually up to 60 loops in one of the samples!), modulated with random LFOs. The result was quite playable – you can hear an example on the podcast. I would ultimately like to create a full composition with this instrument by refining this improvisation and combining it with other elements. It's not a sound I have used very much in the past, so I'm interested to see what I can do with it.