CatSynth pic: Baby and GR-33

From our friend Knox Bronson, a new picture of Baby on a Roland GR-33:

“Baby [was] lying on my gr-33 when I was trying to work on a new song, Baby’s No Help – yes, it’s about Baby. Bad kitty. :)”

Bronson is a new instrumental CD The Seasons, and is releasing a free download per week of his electronic music. The first download is Flight of the Atom Bee.

Aquatic on Coast Community Radio in Astoria, Oregon

A nice follow-up to my recent visit to Astoria with Polly Moller and Company.

A track from my CD Aquatic may be played on Coast Community Radio in Astoria this morning (10am to noon, PDT). This a folk program, which should be interesting. It is hosted by Carol Newman, who was very supportive of our visit and also hosts the “Arts: Live and Local” program, where Polly and our host Paul Hoskin had a chance to discuss our music and our show.

Coast Community Radio streams live online, for those who may want to check out this program as well as their other locally produced programs.

UPDATE: My track Open and Shut Case appeared on the program, you can here a clip of it here. There was an interesting segue into Paul Hipp’s “I am the Decider”, a great parody of Bush, Cheney et al. based on the Beatles’ “I am the Walrus” (Koo-koo-ka-choo). I got a nice mention of the piece and the album, along with reminder of our Polly Moller and Company show and the AVA music series; and “Death and the Maiden” (PM&C) was played as well.

New Podcast: br'er: Rory Snake Handler


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We're trying to open up and grow the CatSynth Channel, with releases on Tuesdays and Thursdays in addition to the Sunday release. Especially after going silent for two weeks, it seems like a good time to launch the expanded series.

Our first weekday podcast is a selection from Of Shemales and Kissaboos, the new album from br'er that was reviewed here at CatSynth in September. This release features “Rory snake handler”, which was discussed in the review and also featured on br'er's myspace.

We are happy to feature music from friends and reviewed groups here at CatSynth, and welcome submissions and requests. You can use our handy submission form, or contact us to get your music featured on the CatSynth Channel.

To subscribe, click the “Subscribe” button, or visit the CatSynth Channel page. As always, enjoy.

New Podcast: Suspension, Polly Moller and Company


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After a few weeks hiatus, the CatSynth Channel Podcast is back. This Sunday we are featuring a track from Not Made of Stone by Polly Moller and Company. Regular readers may recall this is the group I am going on tour with in a little over a week, and Suspension is one of several tracks from Not Made of Stone that we will be performing.

“A woman travels into space to forcibly remove the source of her anguish.”

We began are tour rehearsals this weekend, including some changes from our previous performances. A new guitarist, Bill Wolter; and new live electronics processing for flute and voice.

We began are tour rehearsals this weekend, including some changes from our previous performances. A new guitarist, Bill Wolter; and new live electronics processing for flute and voice.

More information on the album and tour can be found Polly Moller's official website.

To subscribe, click the “Subscribe” button, or visit the CatSynth Channel page. As always, enjoy.









New Podcast: Sean Carson (del *.*), "resting tones 5"

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Sean Carson is the first the first to take advantage of our open submissions for the CatSynth Channel podcast. And we are very to happy to have his piece “resting tones 5”, which very much fits our standard aesthetics, and includes “cat-like” sounds as well.

one of my most bizarre pieces.

there are some cat like sounds made by the cumbus oud. Its a steel string fretless instrument from Turkey

To submit your own music, visit our submissions page. Anything is game, as long as it vaguely fits the aesthetics of the CatSynth blog and/or podcast.

And kids, whatever you do, do NOT type that stage name into your Terminal window ;-).

New Podcast: Turandot (Puccini), Tribute to Luciano Pavarotti (1935-2007)

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Tonight's podcast is a tribute to Luciano Pavarotti, who passed away on September 6, 2007. We feature selections from Act 1 and Act 3 of Puccini's Turandot. The selection from Act 3 is the aria “Nessun dorma,” which was one of Pavarotti's signature pieces. You have probably heard it before. Below is one of his last performances of this piece, at the 2006 Winter Olympics in Turin:

We will have another related video treat for our readers and listeners this Wednesday.

These recordings were released on the Internet Archive, as part of a Creative Commons release.

A technical note: classical recordings tend to suffer more from the artifacts of MP3 encoding, and these recordings have been through the MP3 machine at least twice if not more. Those who want to hear a cleaner version are encouraged to check out the source version, or an original recording on CD.

Although the “Nessun dorma” might be more famous, I am fond of the selection from Act 1. It has a dark sound (in keeping with the rather morbid story line), and a very “modal” sound. In particular, there is the minor pattern that concludes this section:

This pattern, and indeed the generally “modal” nature of the music in this act, is presumably to give the music an “eastern” flavor, in keeping with the story of Turandot. However, it fits perfectly in with my own interests in more mainstream music, including my current fascination with old R&B and rock-and-roll from the 1950s and 1960s. One could see the above pattern, performed by the low strings of the orchestra, done by a string bass in an old jazz or R&B recording .

It is inspiring to find these sorts of connections between often disparate forms of music, and perhaps that is in itself a small tribute. Listening to, and paying respect to, one of the great modern opera talents, and having that lead to inspiration elsewhere…

Chaos Festival: "Aquatic" Luna

We couldn't let this week's theme for the Bad Kitty Cat Chaos Festival (hosted by Kashim and Othello) go unanswered. The theme is “water or rain.” Did somebody say “Aquatic”?

Indeed, the CD does have an underlying water theme, and can be very relaxing to listen to, according to many who have either purchased or downloaded it. Although several of the order pieces had an aquatic sound to them (e.g., “Proportional Fish”), the idea to use it as a unifying element was largely inspired by living here by the ocean…

Of course, all this talk about water makes us at CatSynth quite thirsty:






New Podcast: Perseid-inspired electronic imrpovisation


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Tonight's podcast is a relatively short improvisation using the DSI Evolver. The initial section was inspired, at a vague conceptual level, by going out to see the Perseid meteor shower tonight (August 12-13, 2007), and then unfolds from there with the usual tweaking of knobs and parameters while listening.

Although this is a fairly short recording, it might become part of a larger piece to add to the upcoming album 2 1/2, with a fast techno/electronica beat section to follow. I'm not working on that tonight because I actually am trying catch a little bit of the meteor shower.

For subscription and listening options, click the “CatSynth Channel” icon in the upper right or the subscription link at the top of this post. And as always, enjoy!

New Podcast: MERZ0004 – zlknf – Bast Babylone (May 19, 2005)


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I was searching for track to feature tonight in honor of the Music and Cats theme of the Bad Kitty Chaos Festival, and eventually settled on this selection from Bast Babylone by zlknf:

lknf: free noise from an autonomous organism.
territory of new sonic landscapes in permanent questioning and mutation, quasi-silence purity to gliding noisaural imensitudes.
Bast Babylon EP available through Merzbau.

In this case, I am interpreting the theme as more “inspirational” than literal, i.e., music inspired by cats rather than created from cat sounds. Certainly, the references to Bast suggest a feline connection, as do the following quotes from the credits:

bast babylone is dedicated to bosch and sybilla.
zlknf thanks the electric masters for their gates are open,
her cats for their love is unconditional, merzbau for the immediate
cooperation and sympathy, and the Friends – AGAPE

Musically, this track reminds me a lot of the piece I did for Dorian Grey's Box, as well as several works in 2 1/2. Disturbingly so. Most likely it is common elements inspired by listening to computer music (ala ICMC and SEAMUS), but perhaps there is also a common element of the cats…

For subscription and listening options, click the “CatSynth Channel” icon in the upper right or the subscription link at the top of this post. And as always, enjoy!

New Podcast: Performance at 7th Annual Skronkathon


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Tonight we feature the much-discussed performance from the 7th Annual Skronkathon two weeks ago. I did a solo electronic set featuring myself playing laptop (running [http://osw.sourceforge.net]Open Sund World[/url]), the Indian ektar and gopichand string instruments, a toy piano, the DSI Evolver, and of course my quacking toy duck (everyone loves the duck).

This recording was done my Matt Ingalls for the sfSound Radio broadcast. I edited it a bit, mostly cutting out the empty bits or embarrassing errors.

You can see a photograph from the performance here and more info about the technical preparations here.

For subscription and listening options, click the “CatSynth Channel” icon in the upper right or the subscription link at the top of this post. And as always, enjoy!