Westlicht Performer | Part 01 | Introduction & First Patch
I knew it existed but I did not know it was that good. I personally think it’s one of the most powerful sequencers around. It can do everything you’d expect from a sequencer, but it adds an insane amount of CV destinations and it’s just perfect if you like to create generative ‘self-playing’ patches that sound like someone’s actually playing keys. Amazing. Unfortunately, the Westlicht is only available as a DIY so let’s all spam Simon from Westlicht and convince him to go commercial.
The first part of the video is a ‘first patch’ and you can only do it once. But it worked out pretty well so I used it as an introduction backdrop. In the second part, I replaced RENE with the Westlicht to see how it would work in the Shared Eco-System. I’ll make another video with a more powerful case (more voices) because Westlicht offers eight tracks of sequencing and lots of CV to play with. So have fun with part 01 and more to come soon.
Ground Control | Endorphin.es Spaceship | Episode 6
Ground Control Tutorial
Yes, Ground Control is here! This is a first patch video (and a second) with the new sequencer from Endorphin.es. Space Oddity written and performed by David Bowie, arranged by me. Please consider it a tribute and fair use. I Feel Love written by Giorgio Moroder, Donna Summer and Pete Bellotte
GROUND CONTROL is the 42 hp Eurorack performance sequencer announced at Superbooth 2019. The sequencer has 4 tracks: three melodic tracks and a drum track consisting of 8 drum triggers and modulation/accent output. There are also dedicated mute buttons for each track, MIDI and USB-MIDI I/O, external CV and a 2-octave piano-style keyboard.
Orbita – Playtronica’s Turn Color and Gesture Device
Orbita – Turn Color and Gesture Device
Who said interesting objects should sit silently on a shelf? Creative technology studio Playtronica announces their newest device Orbita: a playful music device that lets you access creativity through sound and colors.
While connected to a mobile device, tablet, or computer, Orbita lets people create music through spontaneous gestures. For the electronic musician, Orbita is an intuitive controller and innovative sound generator. For the music enthusiast, Orbita is a fun and exciting way to interact with music, wrapped in a modern gamelike form.
Devices that Inspired Orbita
Sound Burger by Audio Technica – This portable and the wireless record player is a proto-Walkman of sorts. Looks more like a sandwich to us, though.
Easy Record Maker by Yuri Suzuki and Gakken – Here’s your chance to engrave your very own lo-fi records. A dream come true for those who grew up restricted to our parents’ dusty vinyl collections.
Floating Record Vertical Turntable – How aesthetically pleasing is a smoothly spinning record? A vertical design gives records the display they deserve in the living room.
Sasha Pas, founder of Playtronica: “In Playtronica’s universe, everything should sound. Our past products, TouchMe and Playtron, let people turn any object into an instrument – even touching another person. With Orbita, we bring sound to color through a device that can be used for education, performance, meditation, or just jamming with friends.”
Playtronica’s team of designers, artists, and technologists set out to create an elegant object that evokes creativity and wonder by allowing people to see the world like a synesthete.
The result is the Orbita plug-and-play instrument which gives parents, children, and music lovers a way to create music visually and intuitively. By arranging magnets on a spinning disc, the device morphs the idea of sequencing and music creation with the light touch of a game. In standalone mode, via a minimalist interface, synths, and samples are triggered from Playtronica’s proprietary Web App and are seamlessly blended. The depth and approach are scalable to the skill of the “player”. With this ease of use, Orbita is chic, clever, and addictive.
When the trigger discs are placed on the Orbita turntable, there can be four track “orbits” at play allowing for the expressive and spontaneous triggering of sounds. To further the excitement, there is a “scratch mode” and timing can be adjusted with the spinning wheel like a classic turntable pitch control. The musical combinations are endless. It is USB-C Midi compatible and works easily with all music software and any computer tablet or phone.
Playtronica’s devices require no prior music knowledge but are also beloved by the most ardent music geeks as the Playtronica range is easily integrated into all contemporary electronic interfaces. Orbita comes with a USB-C cable, a set of magnets, and color stickers.
Original design was created by Stockholm-based Axel Bluhme, concept and engineering part Sami Sabik, product design and design for manufacturing Olaf Thiele.
Playtronica was created in 2014 to beat a fresh path for musical education and to invent instruments from everyday life. Playtronica’s goal is to remodel the synergy between the physical and digital worlds thanks to the power of sound and touch. Playtronica explores and arouses curiosity by using music, play and, creative opportunities. With a simple human touch, objects then turn into sounds.
Playtronica was founded by theatre producer Sasha Pas and the team is composed of creative technologist Andrey Manirko, sound designer and composer Olga Maximova, and devices designed by Aglaya Demidenko. Playtronica events and exhibitions in Europe are curated by Vincent De Malherbe. The team has previously collaborated with brands such as Hermes, Issey Miyake, Ikea, and Nike, and museums like Centre Pompidou, Palais de Tokyo, Exploratorium, Tretyakov Gallery and, Garage Museum. The company is based in Paris with satellites in Berlin and Moscow.
The result is the unification of art and audio manipulation through play for young and old, amateur and professional, and Orbita will be available for pre-order from April 29th, 2021. Priced at 250 Euros approximately.
Intellijel launches Metropolix a Eurorack Musical Sequencer
Metropolix a Different and Convincing Multitrack Eurorack Musical Sequencer
Intellijel launches Metropolix a different and powerful multitrack Eurorack musical sequencer. At first blush, Metropolix appears to be a simple 8-stage sequencer — but there is far more functionality than first meets the eye.
The Intellijel Metropolix is a unique and powerful Eurorack format musical sequencer. With an abundance of hands-on, tactile controls and a wealth of modulation possibilities (both internal and external), you can quickly and easily create infectiously musical sequences that are never boring. Even the simplest riff can be brought to life with seemingly endless options to create variations or real-time manipulations. Equally, at home in the studio or a live improvised performance, the Metropolix is sure to grow a staple source of fresh ideas and killer riffs in your creative process.
The operation of the Metropolix is optimized for live performance and jamming, with quick access to all the most relevant performance parameters, and the ability to greatly affect your sequences with a single slider or switch.
Loopy — Performance Looping
Metropolix also features a Loopy mode, allowing you to instantly playback short sub-sequences, or even “play” the stage buttons directly (like a ‘keyboard’).
64 Total Recall Presets
Metropolix stores up to 64 preset configurations (in 8 banks of 8 presets), and all live settings are stored in EPROM, ensuring that your Metropolix will always power up exactly as you left it — even if you haven’t saved them to a preset. By default presets can change all the structural (menu-based) elements of your sequencer without overwriting the front panel controls, but full recall is also available.
Two Tracks, Interconnected
Two tracks (TRK 1 and TRK 2) are variants of a master pitch/gate sequencer, which is programmed via the PITCH sliders, PULSE COUNT and GATE TYPE switches. Each track interprets the master sequence in a variety of ways — creating complementary variations that enable you to generate counterpoint, polyrhythms, and all manner of sonic movement (both subtle and extreme).
Each of these tracks has its own playback ORDER, sequence LENgth, clock DIVision, SWING amount, SLIDE time, and track GATE lengths. Other track-based sequence variables are accessible from the TRACK MENU, and include Pitch Slider inversion; sequence note range; track transposition; and more. In addition, both tracks have multiple lanes of per-stage playback parameters, including: GATE override; PITCH override; RATCHet count; PROBability of playback; ACCUMulating transposition, and a dedicated CV lane. Each stage also has a SKIP feature, and a pitch SLIDE option.
Three AUX Inputs and Two CTRL Knobs
A trio of AUX inputs allows for external modulation of user-assignable sequencer parameters for even greater variation, while two assignable CTRL knobs give you direct access to the parameters you want to adjust most frequently during a performance. With dedicated Pitch/Gate outputs for both Track 1 and Track 2; two totally user-assignable outputs (A and B); and internal MOD routing, Metropolix features a wealth of patching opportunities.
Eight Modulation Lanes
8 separate and individual MODulation lanes are accessed via the MOD button. Each MOD lane has 8-stages of modulation values and its own playback ORDER, LENgth, and clock DIVision; and each lane is routable to one of Metropolix’ two assignable outputs or to dozens of internal destinations, allowing for some sophisticated and powerful self-modulation.
Gx — Gate Expander
Use the optional Gx module to add individual outputs for 8 additional, configurable gate outputs. The Gx (Gate Expander) adds 8 additional Gate/Trigger/Clock/Logic outputs to compatible modules like the Metropolix.
On Metropolix you can configure the Gx via the “MX” menu. Functions such as transport control, per stage gates and mod lane clock outputs are example options.
It connects via ribbon cable to the I2C expansion port of select modules in the intellijel product line.
Pricing and Availability
Metropolix is available soon.
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StrongMocha is a magazine for music producers, audio engineers, and sound designers. StrongMocha Magazine provides the latest industry news, reviews of gear and software, tutorials on recording techniques, and tips for mixing.
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