MUSIC GEAR NEWS: Impact Soundworks has announced Peak Rider 2, a “super-powerful and flexible FX plugin that lets you shape and control dynamics in a totally new way.” Use it to tame wild vocals or drum tracks, create all new rhythmic parts, remove mic bleed, breathe life into flat saturated tracks, and much, much more.
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MUSIC TECH: Native Instruments today announced release of “ELASTIC THUMP,” for MASCHINE, which they describe as “a modern, melodic take on future funk that brews the smoothness of R&B with the feel-good vibes of dance music and the bounce of futuristic, beathead culture.”
GEAR NEWS: Vir2 Instruments has announced their new high-end sampled instrument line, the VITAL SERIES, and the first release “Vital Series Mallets.” Mallets’ powerful GUI offers eight instruments on one patch to be edited, played, blended, and recorded together. No sub menus or separate patches. Mallets has all the controls you need at your fingertips.
Applied Acoustics Systems announces Chromaphone 2 now supports Native Instrument’s NKS plug-in format
AAS’ creative percussion synthesizer plug-in, Chromaphone 2 now supports Native Instrument’s NKS extended plug-in format. NKS brings intuitive and seamless interaction between Chromaphone 2 and KOMPLETE KONTROL S-Series keyboards and MASCHINE hardware. Chromaphone 2’s key parameters have been mapped in order to provide optimal tactile control of its physical modeling engine.
MUSIC TECH: Eplex7 DSP has announced their new Particle Collider SX7 VSTi Virtual Synthesizer for Windows OS. According to the company, “Particle Collider SX7 is special FX and Experimental synthesizer for creating modern sci-fi FX sounds, atmospheric pads, robotic sounds, psytrance and psychedelic FXs, sweeps.”
MUSIC TECH: LANDR Audio and Native Instruments today announces a partnership to offer instant mastering for the Stems format. As of January 30th, 2017, Stems mastering will be available directly on LANDR.com. Files created in Native Instruments’ free Stem Creator application can be dragged and dropped onto LANDR.com for instant sound optimization.
MUSIC GEAR: UVI has announced “Ether Fields,” a new expansion pack for Falcon which “delivers a stunning selection of expertly designed patches” by one of the world’s preeminent sound designers, Simon Stockhausen. The collection includes bells, pads, soundscapes, granular and hybrid sounds, wavetables, sequenced sounds and more; perfect for those looking to expand their library of ready-to-play patches and ideal for those looking for inspirational starting points for their own sound design.
“Sensual Sax” from Embertone can now be had on your iOS device for playing solo, or with others. A new sampled saxophone virtual instrument. While some of us semi-dinosaur MIDI music dudes and dudettes might eschew the lowly iPhone and iPad for music creation when we have our various mega-rig Mac Pro studios to play with, the fact is that the largest growth base for new musicians is now on mobile devices. So, with this in mind, if that sounds like you, then a really cool new product from Embertone might make you breathless.
ETHNO WORLD 6 Complete: Virtual Instrument with Ethnic Instruments and Voices from all over the World
New for 2017, Best Service has rolled out ETHNO WORLD 6 Complete, a library that has continuously grown and been improved over a period of 16 years. In this sixth edition, 80 new instruments and voices with a volume of 13 gigabytes have been added to the library. ETHNO WORLD 6 Complete now consists of 320 instruments and voices being summarized in approx. 800 patches.
New for 2017, Spirfire Audio have announced their latest “symphonic masterpiece,” with “Symphony Orchestra.” The company describes this new collection as “A definitive mega-anthology of tools to create blockbuster symphonic works for TV, film, games and radio in a single and encyclopaedic core-level professional product.”
XILS-Lab this past week announced their latest virtual synth instrument, the PolyKB III which they describe as “The Synthesizer as it should have been, when invented 40 years ago.” The PolyKB III captures the sound and spirit of the legendary RSF PolyKobol 2 polyphonic synthesizer, including its most revolutionary feature : Morphing analog Oscillators.
For fans of expressive performance-focused MIDI instruments, the unique ContinuuCon event Returns to Asheville North Carolina for 2017 to showcasing the latest in Multi-dimensional electronic instruments, workshops, and live performances. The ideal event for those wanting to learn more about both the groundbreaking Haken Continuum instrument, as well as other next-gen music gear in a warm, informal setting. ContinuuCon 2017 will take place June 8-10 – UNCA – Asheville, N.C.
MUSIC GEAR NEWS: Best Service today announced a new series of symphonic performance sample instruments compatible with KOTAKT and ideal for scoring, multimedia and general music. The three new offerings include Chris Hein – SOLO VIOLA, Chris Hein – SOLO CELLO and Chris Hein – SOLO STRINGS COMPLETE. The latter includes Volin, Viola, Cello and ContraBass.
MUSIC TECH: Native Instruments today introduced RADIANT HORIZON – a new MASCHINE Expansion featuring percussive and effect-focused kits with sounds tailored to contemporary urban pop productions rooted in trap, moombahton, and bass music. The expansion focuses on diverse and easily interchangeable Caribbean-inspired rhythms as a backbone for bass-driven, forward-thinking pop.
NEWS: RØDE Microphones’ Sales & Marketing Director Damien Wilson has been promoted to Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of The Freedman Electronics Group, home to pro audio brands RØDE, Aphex, Event Electronics and SoundField.
NEW MUSIC: Dallas artist OG Bobby Billions (OGB) recently released what, according to him, “might be one of the greatest debuts from a new talent, and it’s only the beginning.” On Dec. 9, 2016 OGB will be releasing a more in-depth visual to the already buzzing “Bands” single.
MUSIC GEAR: Rob Papen Soundware has announced “Predator2,” the successor to Predator, “the natural-born, killer-sounding soft synth” that has inspired so many composers and artists. Predator2’s pliable GUI (Graphical User Interface) has once again been given the trademark Rob Papen treatment, designed so that (almost) all of the main controls are always visible onscreen, making it both inspirational and intuitive in use.
MUSIC GEAR: The folks at PSP have announced a new “stompbox” filter plugin, appropriately called PSP stompFilter. They describe it as “a creative tool designed to provide an exceptionally wide range of modulated filter and gain sounds.” Its effects include a simple LFO modulated low pass filter; auto-wah; low-, band-, or high-pass filter; and compressor.
HEALTHY LIVING: For many of us, we seem to be on a perpetual diet plan of some kind. Especially for those of us who have found our 40s and impending middle age a bit tougher to balance time, work, meals, and general lifestyle mis-adventures than it once was. For me, I joined the Jenny Craig meal plan this spring, and am happy to say I’ve lost about 34 pounds so far, which is about one-third of my overall goal.
MUSIC GEAR: Most modern musicians know that sometimes waiting for new gear can be tough when the magazines and videos demo a neato new software app, sample library or piece of hardware. This can lead to so-called “gas” (gear acquisition syndrome). Savvy folk know there are certain times of the year when deals are to be had. Black Friday, Cyber Monday, and often around NAMM and other music shows, or right before a new version is released. (UPDATED)
MUSIC GEAR: Spitfire Audio has announced availability of SPITFIRE SYMPHONIC STRINGS, a massic “encyclopaedic compendium of symphonic strings sampling,” with blockbuster content recorded at Lyndhurst Hall within London’s legendary Air Studios. The Kontakt-powered library comprises the same 60 star string players performing on the same instruments featured on numerous famous film scores.
NEWS: MUSIC Group, the parent of world-renowned brands MIDAS, KLARK TEKNIK, LAB GRUPPEN, LAKE, TANNOY, TURBOSOUND, TC ELECTRONIC, TC HELICON, BEHRINGER, BUGERA, DDA and EUROCOM, and one of the world’s leading manufacturers of professional audio products, has recently been ranked as one of the world’s largest and top manufacturers in the 2016 edition of Music Trade’s annual Global Music Industry 225 Report.
NEW MUSIC: The Second Spirit, an indie rock project, just released its debut EP, “Modern Life,” a five-song album, and its first single, “Rescue Car,” which, according to band leader Matthew Victory Warren “personifies the physicality of love through a retro vibe, rock and roll groove and cool, fuzzy guitar leads.”
UVI releases Synth Anthology 2, classic collection of analog and digital synths in one virtual instrument
MAKING MUSIC: UVI announced this week their newest creation, Synth Anthology 2, a classic collection of analog and digital synths in one virtual instrument. This new version and comprehensive update includes over 2,500 presets sampled from 77 hardware synths, new interface and premium UVI effects such as Sparkverb, Thorus and Phasor.
MAKING MUSIC: Native Instruments announced this week the Kontakt-powered sound library, “Symphony Essentials,” which they describe as five meticulously sampled orchestral instruments, featuring pristine recordings that cover all fundamental playing techniques, each in an elegant, intuitive interface.
MAKING MUSIC: IK Multimedia this week announced their new physically modeled electric bass instrument “MODO BASS.” Once you get past the “limitless sound, unmatched realism, total playability” hype, there is a lot to like for keyboard players who want to get their funk on!
MAKING MUSIC: KORG has announced a new line of add-on sample sound upgrades for the powerful KORG KRONOS 2 workstation keyboard, from Soundiron, who has been making awesome sample libraries for many years. Korg welcomes Soundiron to our growing family of sound developers, and is pleased to present their first two EXs libraries for Kronos.
MAKING MUSIC: MIDI solutions specialist Kenton is proud to be celebrating its 30th anniversary in October 2016; around 11,000 days since founder John K. Price began by building a cost-effective and well-specified Musical Instrument Digital Interface (MIDI) for his beloved 1979-vintage Oberheim OB-X.
THEATRE NEWS: Art-In-Relation announces a move from Long Beach, after two successful seasons, to Hollywood with two hauntingly gorgeous, but lesser known musical theater productions at The Complex Theatres, Hollywood. “The Wild Party,” a lesser known version of the musical based on the poem by Joseph Moncure, and written by Andrew Lippa, plays Sept. 9 – Oct. 2, 2016.
MUSIC NEWS: Mission Music, a nonprofit agency in New Jersey that provides underserved youth with access to musical instruments and lessons regardless of their ability to pay, is donating a half dozen acoustic guitars to The Village of Arts and Humanities in Philadelphia, Pa., on Thursday, July 14, 2016.
MUSIC NEWS: Los Angeles-based filmmaker Michael C. Perry has announced that his film “Empty Box of Wine” has been selected for the 2016 San Francisco Frozen Film Festival. Perry is the lead singer in the band, Jour Majesty, who last year rose to #2 on the indie folk charts; his entry into the film festival accompanies the upcoming Jour Majesty album, “Empty Box of Wine.”
Chicago-based alt-rock band, The Blue Danes have released their debut album “Invisible and Untouchable” on label Loki Valhalla Productions. This haunting lyrical masterpiece includes the highly anticipated release of the popular single “Beautiful and Sad,” which has earned over 26,000 YouTube views.
MUSIC NEWS: The South Austin Moonlighters will be releasing “Ghost of a Small Town,” which features 13 brand new songs including their new single “You, Love and Me.” The album will be available on iTunes, on their website, on Amazon, CD Baby, at the shows and at Waterloo Records and discriminating independent record stores everywhere.
Singer/songwriter Paula Cole is funding her new album from the ground up on Kickstarter. Recently Cole launched her campaign to fund an 8th studio album, to be called “Ballads,” which she described on her funding page as so: “‘Ballads’ is a weaving of American roots music; my first album of cover songs. I can honestly say I’ve been wanting to make this album my whole career. There will be jazz ballads next to traditional songs and swing and blues – it’s all roots music.”
For fans of multi-dimensional MIDI controllers, and true performance instruments in favor of grid controllers, the first (annual?) Haken Continuum Conference has been announced for June 9-11, 2016 in Asheville, North Carolina. This new event has been dubbed “ContinuuCon” (pronounced con-tin-you-con).
MUSIC GEAR: Xils-Lab this week announced the pending release of version 1.0 (now in final BETA), of its latest creation, a new take on the venerable drum machine, combining virtual analog and multi-synthesis to set it apart from the horde of existing fare.
ASCAP, the American Society of Composers Authors and Publishers, today announced the appointment of Paul Rourke as its Executive Vice President and Chief Financial Officer (CFO), reporting to ASCAP CEO Elizabeth Matthews. Rourke will be a key member of ASCAP’s 2016 executive management team and will be responsible for all of the organization’s financial matters […]
SoundExchange this week announced that Garth Brooks, the number one selling solo artist in U.S. history, has added another achievement to his recording career. After the country music artist amassed more than one billion performances on more than 2,500 digital radio services, SoundExchange President and CEO Michael Huppe presented Brooks with the company’s prestigious Digital Radio Award. He is the first country music artist to be honored with this award.
ASCAP (The American Society of Composers, Authors and Publishers), the world leader in performing rights and advocacy for music creators, announced that Nicole George-Middleton and Shawn LeMone have both been promoted to Senior Vice President, Membership. They will continue to report directly to ASCAP EVP, Membership, John Titta.
UVI announces FALCON, a virtual instrument with 15 oscillators covering both synthesis and sampling techniques
NEWS: As a likely response to the popular Omnisphere 2, UVI have announced their own hybrid synthesis+samples instrument, Falcon, which they describe as a “fully-featured hybrid instrument with 15 oscillators covering both synthesis and sampling techniques, over 80 effects, extensive modulation control and more.”
NEWS: Native Instruments today released a number of new advancements to their KOMPLETE KONTROL product family, while also announcing a special offer for folks to purchase competitor Arturia’s virtual synth lineup at a special price, marking Arturia’s updates for compatibility with the NKS protocol.
REVIEW: A Southern California band formed in 2014 from local seasoned musicians, called “The Usual Suspects,” is rocking fans with delicate flavors of the Doobie Brothers, Steely Dan, Todd Rundgren, and Tower of Power for a unique recipe.
NEWS: RØDE Microphones acquires Aphex. It was a surprise today to see two of my favorite brands come together. Australian pro-audio company RODE Microphones today announced its acquisition of legendary audio technology manufacturer, U.S.-based Aphex.
Native Instruments launches information portal for ‘Stems’ multi-channel audio format for creative live performance
NEWS: Native Instruments (NI) today announced the public launch of a new information portal on the “Stems” audio format. The website outlines what the heck the new format is for, and NI describes the new multi-channel audio format as being ‘for creative DJing and live performance.’
Music Industry Guru Loren Weisman announces launch of new ‘Music Business For Dummies’ book with Florida event
Long-time musician (drummer/producer) and music biz “guru” Loren Weisman has announced a June release party event in Florida for his new book, “Music Business For Dummies” (ISBN: 978-1119049654), which is geared to those creative types of any age looking to launch or rekindle a music career. The latest in the world-famous “for dummies” book series, […]
Golden Kingdom Expansion for N.I. MASCHINE touts EDM sound styles for ultra-commercial modern hip hop
NEWS: According to an announcement this week from Native Instruments, their latest expansion pack for its MASCHINE, GOLDEN KINGDOM, delivers “a wealth of sound for contemporary mainstream hip hop.”
MOVIE REVIEW: If you’re looking for a simple-minded romantic comedy this is not the film you’re looking for. If you want director Matthew Vaughn’s trademark mix of humor, action and high production value, sit down and be a happy camper. “Kingsmen: The Secret Service” is a definitely British movie, unlike his earlier “Kick Ass,” which was geared to the American audience without question.
NEWS: Native Instruments has announced live streaming event which will include house and techno artists Dubfire, Marc Kinchen, live from Red Bull’s Guest House, and will be broadcast from the Winter Music Conference (WMC) in Miami, on March 26, 2015 (Thursday).
NEWS: Musical artist, mother, activist, Grammy-winner Paula Cole has announced her new album, “7” is now available. Featuring Cole’s original band members and musical soul mates Jay Bellerose and Kevin Barry, with upright bassist Dennis Crouch complementing the bottom-end, “7” is about the songs, says Cole.
Venerable Akai MPC supply company MPCstuff have announced some new replacement parts for select MPC models to whiten and brighten your drum machine. The “white out” look for music instruments is super popular, and many music instrument companies have often created special editions. The Virus Ti “Polar,” the anniversary edition of the Yamaha Motif, special […]