ode2Jo by bassling

Absynth 5's Alan Lamb preset

Just noticed this Alan Lamb preset in Absynth 5. To my ear it doesn't sound like his work with 'the wires' but it's got a bit of the rattle that he adds on his aeolian harp recordings.

The drone ranger

NGC1313 Spiral Galaxy in Reticulum – Abre Ojos @ Electundra from abre ojos on Vimeo.

Above is a video from Scott Baker, who built an aeolian harp with Alan Lamb outside Wagga Wagga that - like Scott - has been an inspiration to me.

Below is video of my drums vibrating 'the wires' that Scott built with Alan Lamb.

Funky jam

I like this lots :)

Drum compression

A while ago I found this outline for compressor settings at www.orange-fields.com/widepages/drumscomp

It was useful to me so I thought I'd share. If they're your settings, let me know and I can attribute them to you or remove them if you wish but thanks for the help.


(A variety of different settings !)


1) To "flatten" = 8:1 or more, short attack 2ms or less.

2) For more "attack" = slow the attack time to let the initial "poke" through.

3) 6:1, Threshold = -3 to -5dB.

4) Between 4:1 & 8:1, attack about 10ms, rel. about 200ms.

5) 10dB gain reduction (maximum !)


1) 3:1, Threshold = -10dB to add "crack".

2) Between 4:1 & 6:1, attack = 5 to 10ms, rel. about 150ms.

3) 10dB gain reduction (maximum !)


1) 2:1 to lengthen signal decays.


1) Between 4:1 & 6:1, attack = 5 to 10ms, rel. about 150ms.


1) 4:1, 5dB gain red. as starting point. Use AUTO (or attack 40 to 50ms, rel. 300 to 500ms.)


Tom Cosm - Moving from the studio to live performance using Ableton Live from Delicious on Vimeo.

This is good, I should try and see more stuff like this. Any recommendations?

Going the extra mile

Thanks to Abre Ojos for passing on this blog post:

Going the extra mile for unique timbres

It's a good read and the other topics covered look promising too :)

bassling wants to be free

Five years before Chris Anderson published Free, three years before Radiohead released their album In Rainbows for a donation (of potentially nothing); bassling was inspired by Creative Commons to offer his first LP for free.

Don't wait another five years - download it today!

More meaningful Korzybski

Anecdote about Korzybski

One day, Korzybski was giving a lecture to a group of students, and he suddenly interrupted the lesson in order to retrieve a packet of biscuits, wrapped in white paper, from his briefcase. He muttered that he just had to eat something, and he asked the students on the seats in the front row, if they would also like a biscuit. A few students took a biscuit. "Nice biscuit, don't you think," said Korzybski, while he took a second one. The students were chewing vigorously. Then he tore the white paper from the biscuits, in order to reveal the original packaging. On it was a big picture of a dog's head and the words "Dog Cookies." The students looked at the package, and were shocked. Two of them wanted to throw up, put their hands in front of their mouths, and ran out of the lecture hall to the toilet. "You see, ladies and gentlemen," Korzybski remarked, "I have just demonstrated that people don't just eat food, but also words, and that the taste of the former is often outdone by the taste of the latter." Apparently his prank aimed to illustrate how some human suffering originates from the confusion or conflation of linguistic representations of reality and reality itself.

More meaningful differences

This morning I was reading that something like 95% of blogs don't get updated regularly. I felt a bit of guilt but another statement in the article also rang true, that most blogs have an audience of one. I blog because I like the interface better than writing in a diary.

One blog that I think deserves a large readership is The Stretta Procedure because it takes the current topics and adds a dose of reflection. The current post takes the issue of the latest mobile and keyboard and lifts the topic to focus on why people fuss about small incremental differences:

The recent introduction of Tom Oberheim's SEM re-issue sparked a spirited debate on the sonic differences between surface mount and through hole components. I found the discussion mildly amusing - not just because of all the half-truths, flawed premises and mis-information, but due to the psychology behind the discussion itself.

We spend so much time discussing the technical differences because we CAN talk about the technical differences. We can't talk about the sound or usefulness because this is entirely subjective. Those debates pretty much go like this:

"I think the re-issue sounds just like the vintage version."
"I think your ears are full of poop."
And so on.

Technology is concrete, exacting. We can zero in on some minute aspect and obsess about it. We can claim a re-issue isn't going to be EXACTLY the same as the original because the traces are too long, or make sharp 90 degree turns or a SMT chip package was used. The existence of these differences, whether or not they actually contribute something meaningful to the sound, nonetheless exist and can be endlessly debated.

Meanwhile, this generates a lot of noise, the issue is magnified and weighs disproportionately in our minds.

At what point is a difference a meaningful one?

Stretta reminded me of something I was reading yesterday about language as a conspiracy. In Everything Is Under Control, Robert Anton Wilson discusses Count Alfred Korzybski, who:

...observed that the words we use influence our perceptions and conceptions of the world - e.g., even in the same language, a book may be called "realistic" by one reader and "pornographic" by another, and each will tend to perceive/conceive the book that way more and more automatically if they repeat their label ("realistic" or "pornographic") over and over. This underlies the mechanism of hypnosis, as Dr. Bandler discovered later. It also explains why you won't make much progress preaching radical equality to somebody who continually uses the word "nigger," or defending the first amendment to somebody who keeps saying "smut" (or "sexism"). (p.276)

The more I read about perception, the more I realise how little information we use to base many decisions upon. Recently I read a blog post (either Boingboing or Wired) which outlined audio illusions. Like, if you put on headphones and listen to a microphone as you rub your fingers in front of it and adjust the tone so that it's all treble, you'll conclude that your fingers are dry because of the sound. Likewise, if you do this while rolling off the higher frequencies, you'll think your fingers are moist.

Our brains must create realistic illusions every day!

Big excitement

My big news is that a few of my videos are on the BIG SCREEN at Melbourne's Federation Square at 2.30pm each day during May as part of the Notes From The Underground program.


One of a few tracks that I've written so far this year :(

Current set-up

Still loving my Boss pedals but I've replaced the drums with a machine to make some electro-sorta music. Next I plan to incorporate the guitar and the triggered bass that I was using but I'm still enjoying this set of effects for now.

How technology shapes taste

Been reading this comment about research that suggests younger folk prefer mp3s to higher fidelity recordings and it's an example of a pet theory I've been mulling over about how technology shapes taste.

I started thinking about this when I reflected on how many years it took for me to appreciate the sound of synthesizers. All through the 80s I hated them, all those now classic sounds. Then in the 90s I began to appreciate the visceral nature of dance music and soon learned to love the aesthetic.

Then I thought about how Autotune used to be reviled and is now all over and over the top in popular music.

And before long I was thinking how digital mediums like CDs had allowed a wider frequency range, specifically deeper and heavily compressed bass, to be recorded and replayed.

Anyway, it's still a pet theory and it's needs some more thought.

Is the Future of Music Generative?

This is an interesting essay covering a lot of issues surrounding generative music. If you've read a heap of Brian Eno interviews then most of the subject matter is more about whether the music industry would recognise generative music as music but it's a great collection of stimulating ideas.

I've been wondering when there will be a program that registers what the user/s prefer (breaks, ambient, dnb, etc.), what time of the day, what the stress level in their voice says their emotional state would be, etc. and creates bespoke background music according to their previous preferences.

But I guess the real issue is that generative music is yet to become as intricate and accessible as pop music because that is what is marketed to the 'mainstream' as 'music'