Wednesday, December 26, 2012

Passion Pit - Carried Away (Les Professionnels Remix)

Our friends Les Professionnels posted a free Passion Pit remix earlier this December. We saw them play a set a bit more funky than this remix recently, but it's great to hear some summery synth music to treat your ears! You can download it free as well - what could be better?

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Wednesday, December 12, 2012

An Arp Odyssey Christmas

Looking for some synthesized Christmas music?  Stephen Alcorn's got you covered with An Arp Odyssey Christmas.  This album sounds really old, and it is-- recorded way back in 1976.  It is basically Switched on Bach with an odyssey and Christmas tunes.  I actually find it very relaxing to listen to, and it's got a ton of charm for being such an oddity.  Be sure to listen to the demos over on CD Baby, or check out the album on iTunes.  Below is some liner notes from the album, detailing how it came about-- truly makes you appreciate how far home recording studios have come!


"An ARP Odyssey Christmas" is a collection of classic Christmas carols performed on an ARP Odyssey analog synthesizer. Arrangements evoking trumpets, flutes, strings, reeds, spacey sounds, and even an operatic soprano were created by recording each part separately in sync with the others.

It was 1976 – "Switched On Bach" had been out for eight years and won three Grammies, the iconic MiniMoog for six years, and the ARP Odyssey for four. Electronic music was becoming more and more popular, and synthesizers were increasingly heard in many genres of music. As of 1976, however, I knew of no existing album of Christmas carols rendered on a synthesizer.

I was in graduate school In 1976 studying geology, and in the fall of that year thought that it would be fun to make a Christmas album to give to family as Christmas presents. It seemed like a good idea, since I had an ARP Odyssey (which I had played with a Rhodes piano in a band, Amethyst, in Athens, Georgia) that was sitting idle, and I had a yearning for unadorned, classic arrangements of Christmas music.

Shindu - Just Go (Reflex Remix)

Here's a nice track from Reflex, remixing Shindu's "Just Go".  Lots of great synth work from the French duo here.  Very danceable.  Get on your feet!

Tuesday, December 11, 2012

Kavinsky - Protovision

Kavinsky has released his first track from his next album Outrun, called "Protovision."  The video features the ultra-style you'd expect from him at this point-- the zombie Kavinsky figure on previous albums has come to life and is driving around in a Testarossa, avoiding the police, in a seemingly retro world.  While Kavinsky is probably relying a little bit too much on the Drive fame for this one (similar setting, ideas, and perhaps even the same streets from the movie), it doesn't stop the track from being pretty darn cool.  I'm really looking forward to this next record as a stylish synth odyssey.

Pittsburgh Modular Foundation (PMF) Demo Series I ------ by DesertF!sh

Desertf!sh sent me this nice video of him demonstrating a Pittsburgh Modular Synth.  Very helpful if you're thinking about buying one of these, as it appears to be a bit of a rarity as far as demos go online.  Also shows off the waveforms on the oscilloscope. From the man himself:

"I recently got a Pittsburgh Modular Foundation Synth, a beautiful euro rack mono synth. However, before I bought it i could not see any proper demos for it. Hence, I made a few demos for synth enthusiasts and anyone interested."

Friday, December 7, 2012

Space Love - The Remixes EP

We loved the Silenx remix of She's the Queen, "Talk to Me" - so we had to check out what this mastermind is up to with this new Space Love EP and the remixes.  We're a big fan of the Final DJs remix because it tickles ears and exudes funky vibrations. 

DJ Apt One - Everyday People Edit

 Every now and then, you need a feel good party vibe that is laid back but soulful.  DJ Apt One's new edit of "Everyday People" brings a warm, funky and clean edit to share with us for free! Thank you DJ Apt One! Download and share with your friends!

Wednesday, December 5, 2012

Doepfer Dark Energy II Now Available

After a short disappearance, the popular Dark Energy has returned as the Dark Energy II with some modifications due to the discontinuation of a chip needed for the Dark Energy I.  The initial run of the DEII sold out very quickly, but Doepfer seems to have them back in stock.  As the press release below goes in detail, the new DEII has some changes in its sound-- the oscillator is now sawtooth core, as opposed to triangle, for one, and the filter is now multi-mode, meaning you can use high pass, low pass, band pass, and notch modes.  These two changes are quite welcome in my eyes-- sawtooth core oscillators are preferred by many, and multi-mode filters aren't as common on modern analogs (save for the Minibrute).  If you're looking to buy, be sure to grab one before they sell out again!

"Doepfer announces availability of Dark Energy II Analog Synthesizer

GRAEFELFING, GERMANY: audio hardware developer Doepfer is proud to announce availability of its new Dark Energy II Analog Synthesizer, a redesigned version of the original Dark Energy, a standalone monophonic analogue synthesizer with inbuilt USB/MIDI interfacing and CV connectivity released to much critical acclaim in 2010...

So why the need to redesign something so successful so soon? Simple. Needs must. And who better to explain this than company CEO Dieter Doepfer himself: “As the Dark Energy had to be discontinued, because an important electronic component (CEM3394) is no longer available, we decided to do a redesign. The new Dark Energy II looks like the Dark Energy at first glance, but the basic sound of the Dark Energy II is clearly different because of the new circuits for the VCO, VCF, and VCA.”

Given the absence of that rich-sounding, analogue ‘synthesizer-voice-on-a-chip’ (CEM3394) from Curtis Electromusic Specialities successor OnChip, how does the Dark Energy II sound? Still rich, still analogue — with 20 to 30 minutes tuning time needed for the VCO’s temperature-controlled pure analogue circuitry, but different... mainly because of the completely different filter type.

Notable differences in specification between the two — together with a number of functional additions to the Dark Energy II — are as follows: firstly, the Dark Energy II features a sawtooth-based VCO core (compared to the Dark Energy’s triangle-based one), which, as implied, outputs a sawtooth waveform, with a waveform Shape switch for selecting sawtooth, off, or clipped/inverted sawtooth; meanwhile, that all-important, sounding-defining VCF is centred around a 12dB multimode filter with lowpass, notch, highpass, and bandpass, together with an all-new filter Mode control for continuous transition from lowpass via notch and highpass around to bandpass (as opposed the 24dB lowpass variety with linear frequency modulation (LFM) control found on the Dark Energy); the VCF’s exponential frequency modulation (XFM) control also has a polarization function, whereby the modulation source (LFO2 or ADSR) selected by the Source switch can affect the filter frequency with a positive or negative behaviour (by rotating rightwards or leftwards, respectively); finally, the VCA has an exponential scale (unlike the Dark Energy’s combined linear/exponential scale).

Benefitting those with a modicum of electronics know-how, the Dark Energy II offers much more internal expansion possibilities than its ‘Mk I’ predecessor courtesy of pin header terminals for the following functions: rectangle and sawtooth VCO outputs, linear FM input for VCO, hard sync input for VCO, lowpass/bandpass/highpass VCF output, rectangle and triangle outputs for each LFO, and optional reset/direction features for each LFO — all conspiring to make this already flexible synthesizer even more flexible!

The upshot of those differences is that sounds created on a Dark Energy II of course cannot be replicated on a Dark Energy (and vise versa) — though there is nothing to stop the two distinctive synthesizers from being daisy-chained together to produce an even wider palette of sounds. Indeed, several units can be polyphonically or monophonically cascaded (via internal MIDI out/MIDI in connections) to create an ‘über-synth’ of sorts!
Like the Dark Energy, the Dark Energy II is a standalone monophonic analogue synthesizer with inbuilt USB/MIDI interfacing and CV connectivity housed in a rugged black metal case with wooden end cheeks; likewise, sound generation and all modulation sources are 100 percent analogue, appealing to purists — only the USB/MIDI interface includes digital components, naturally! Again, vintage-looking, high-quality potentiometers with metal shafts are used throughout, and all are fixed to the casing — except for that all-new filter Mode control — to ensure stability. Spacing between them is generous (in comparison to the necessarily smaller A-100 Analog Modular System modules like the A-111-5 Mini Synthesizer Voice equivalent of the original Dark Energy) to ease sound-shaping manipulation.
In truth, then, the Dark Energy II is — to all intents and purposes — an all-new synthesizer from Doepfer! Why not plug in and play?
Dark Energy II can only be ordered online within Germany directly from Doepfer ( for €428.00 EURO, including VAT, or purchased from an authorised dealer. (An optional Glide control option is also available for self-installation for €10.00 EURO, including VAT.)"

Monday, December 3, 2012

Le Bump - Philadelphia Dance Scene

We're really glad there is a great dance music scene happening in our own backyard - Philly. Finding a great spot to dance that is open late is a rare find in a city that closes up shop around 2 AM and loses much of its artistic talent to NYC and D.C.  Le Bump Philly is a collaboration between local artists to bring you everything you ever wanted to hear on the dance floor - Electro-pop & Psychedelic rock performed live and DJs playing funky house, and a treat from the Worldtown Soundsystem. If you can make it to Philadelphia, we definitely recommend this show! Check out the free She's the Queen download below (recently making the top 10 "must hear tracks" in their genre on w/ their single "Talk to Me")! We wish them great success!

Check out more!  Follow Le Bump Philly and theSynthSymp on twitter!

Friday, November 30, 2012

BB Brunes - Stéréo (Jupiter Remix)

One of our favorite duo groups from across the pond - Paris, France - Jupiter posted this wonderful eletro-funk track with a great interlude. This track dishes the beat with some distorted - robotic vocals.
Mad love!

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Thursday, November 29, 2012

All I Think About Is You - Edwin Van Cleef

This is my newest jam as of late. I first remember hearing Edwin's wonderful Listomania cover - but his tracks have such an interesting and groovy sound. Great work from one of U.K.'s finest - oh and you can download it for free if you want!

Goldroom's Newest Single

Hey Synth music world! Today, L.A.'s Goldroom released his newest single since his smashing hit "Fifteen" (which is a lovely piece of sunshine). His jam "Sweetness Alive" - about which I initially thought the title was a little bit cheesy - has a great warm bass and brilliant stabs throughout a great disco beat. Not to mention the excelent vocals, guitar, percussion and mixing ~

Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Nova November Mix - Bag Raiders - free

Hey guys! In case you missed our Australian friends', the Bag Raiders, new November mix. It has a great intro and features a track from Justin Faust! Groove to this one~

Tuesday, November 20, 2012

First Elektron Analog Four Videos

Intrigued by the Elektron Analog Four, but not sure what to make of it?  Above, we have what seems to be the first video of it in action.  Again, very similar to the other Elektron devices in the programming workflow, but the Analog Four is showing itself off as a fantastic live device.  The effects and sequencing just sound so cool live, and the amount of knobs and buttons really keep control quick.  Overall, it just screams fun to me.

What do you think?

Queen of Hearts - "Warrior"

Queen of Hearts has just released a new video for her single "Warrior".  The video has great production values (looks just about ready for MTV-- if MTV played anything decent!) and the track seems to be transcending obscure, with that right amount of greater pop appeal while still retaining its creative edge.  The Queen of Hearts back catalog is all fantastic as well.

Don't forget, this one is also produced by the legendary Diamond Cut.

Be sure to grab the single "Warrior" on December 2nd.  You can preorder now.

Saturday, November 17, 2012

Kristine - Modern Love EP

Been in Kristine withdrawal lately?  We have too.  A true time machine artist, Kristine has released a new EP that would have topped the charts in the days of Cyndi Lauper and Phil Collins.  Kristine's voice is the perfect soundtrack to those nights, cruising around town in your Delorean and searching for that Ally Sheedy look alike to ask out.  Yeah, you should get it, it's really retro.  Just how we like it on the Synth Symp.  Catchy hooks, great beats, the whole 10 yards.

The full EP has remixes not listed here as well.  Be sure to grab it on iTunes.

Friday, November 16, 2012

Hot Hot Hawk featuring Patrick Baker - "Electric Touch"

Patrick Baker has teamed up with Hot Hot Hawk for an incredible track with a big kick and italo bass.  Baker's vocals keep it modern, and offer up a fantastic contrast of new and old.  Plenty of fancy synth work to be heard as well.

I'm Corrupt (ALFA Remix) - Dcup

Check out this 70s funky remix of Dcup's recent single, "I'm Corrupt." Its moody, Moogy, bassline makes the groove of this jam pure nu-disco fantasy. Alfa - a great part of Binary Entertainment - kills it with this remix!

Shout out to !

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Thursday, November 15, 2012

Sweater Beats - I Got U

We're a big fan of mixing styles and trying out a new jam. This one is definitely an interesting blend of bass and hip-hop (some great claps too!). If you really like the track you can get it for free!

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Full Elektron Analog Four Announcement, Features are here!

Finally, the full details of the Analog Four are officially out.  I've copied and pasted the tech specs, but you can get a full rundown of the new beast here,.  There's also a variety of sound demos on Elektron's official Soundcloud (heard above).  In case you're wondering, the price is $1149.  They will start shipping on December 3rd.

Early impressions: The control voltage and sequencer are the real winners here.  As I mentioned in the previous post, Elektron have become experts with sequencing through hardware with their other devices, so there are some really exciting possibilities with 4 analog voice tracks and an effects track.  Above, the sequences sound pretty awesome.  Lots of squelchiness and warmth.  The control voltage will please the modular lovers, and those of you who've recently picked up the MiniBrute will be able to interface it with the A4 quite easily.  The effects will be a nice touch and make this stand out to live performers.

Time will tell how this stands up against the other products on the market-- the closest in functionality to it is the Tetra, but the Analog Four seems to have it beat on sequencing.  The additional $300 dollars might put it at a disadvantage, but I'm guessing the Analog Four won't appeal to your standard synth fan-- it seems like a tool for those of you who are really into mastering one piece of gear.

Tech Specs:

Wednesday, November 14, 2012

Poolside - Take Me Home - FREE DOWNLOAD!

Poolside, the calming daytime-disco group from L.A., announced yesterday that they are giving out their song "Take Me Home" for free! We've been following Poolside from their first few jams - this one is an oldie but a goodie. This song can also be found on Aeroplane's "In Flight Entertainment" compilation ~

Also - Check out their Fall/Winter mixtape that they posted a few days ago!

New Elektron Analog Four Information, Release Date, and Picture

via Matrixsynth, Filter Env
You can finally get a good look at the new Elektron Analog Four.  Below are some early (unofficial, but very likely) specs for the new beast, which is said to start shipping on December 3rd.  While some of you may initially say this looks similar to the DSI Tetra, it certainly seems to have its own set of extra features (which also makes me think it will hover right around the other Elektron price points at $1100-$1200).  Some of Four's unique features include 2 filters per voice, "hi-quality" effects, and an easy to use sequencer.

Looking at the image closely, we can see knobs that are lettered (my guess is these can be mapped), the step sequencer across the bottom, 303-key like buttons on the right side, with synth parameters above them (Osc 1 and 2, LFO, etc).  Below the screen seems to be 4 directional buttons for navigating the software, with Stop, Play, and Record below that.

From what I can tell so far, the Analog Four seems to fit perfectly with what we expect from Elektron-- the black box, buttons, screen, and colors all remind me of the Octatrack.  Elektron products are known to have complex software abilities under the hood, so be on the lookout for that as well.  I'm really hoping that the software controls on this synth make it an instant classic.  It's fallen nicely into my "analog renaissance" prediction, too!

Keep updated by checking Tradition and Future Website, or Elektron's website.  Also, check back here for non-official information, previews, and more.


4 synth voices. 

2 Analog oscillators per voice. 
2 Analog filters per voice. 
1 Analog overdrive circuit per voice. 
Multiple LFOs and envelopes per voice. 
Elektron step sequencer with parameter locks. 
Kit and Sound storage. 
All new hi-quality effects. 
2x dual CV/Gate outputs. 
Dedicated CV/Gate and FX sequencer tracks. 
2x External inputs. 
2x Main outputs. 
1x Headphones output.
Analog Four

Estimated shipping date: December 3

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Tuesday, November 13, 2012

Lifelike & A-Trak - Don't Stop (Club Mix)

After hearing some of the amazing french touch producer Lifelike has been making recently (or making always), I thought a collaboration with A-Trak would be something to play out!

Check out Lifelike for more!

Frankmusik - Fast As I Can Music Video

Frankmusik's been hiding out quite a bit from the spotlight since the release of Do It In The AM, producing for others instead, but he's finally stepped out to the spotlight again with his new track "Fast As I Can", which he released a couple weeks back.  Yesterday, he premiered his new video for the track.  I think this song is a true return to form for FM, and it reminds me of the Complete Me days a bit-- and that's my favorite Frankmusik.  The video features FM running around to meet a woman on a beach, and in true American fashion, he grabs what seems to be a Big Mac out of her hand.  Not kidding here, folks.  Check out the awesome video, and be sure to grab the track on iTunes.

Saturday, November 10, 2012

Let Em Riot - SlashWave EP

Let Em Riot's new EP via Electronic Rumors is pretty dang cool-- tons of 80s influence here (those 80s bells!  always a favorite), and maybe some pop action from the past 10 years slipping in via the vocals.  Really nicely produced to top it off.  Dig it.

Friday, November 9, 2012

Elektron releases WTF ad to show off new Analog Four Synth

Elektron has released a new video to promote their new synthesizer, the Analog Four.  While it's always great to hear about a new piece of analog gear, unfortunately the video shows us nothing about the product, its features, or its sounds-- unless you're assuming the soundtrack of the video is from it.  This video seems more like what Sony does with their Playstation ads-- show off everything but the product, and try to tell a creative story.  Judging by the comments on YouTube, many fans don't seem to be entertained-- they think the money for the ad would have been better spent on tech support for their previous projects.

I commend the effort to take a gamble on a cool ad for musicians, but I hope this doesn't turn into an overhyped analog box.  All the Elektron reviews I've read have been nothing but positive, but the comments on this video really indicate that there are a number of unsatisfied customers-- one even says "Will be released in 2013, will work properly in 2015."  Let's hope that's not the real case, and it's just a vocal group of YouTube outliers.

I'll post more as I find out about it-- let's hope the price is reasonable and its features are as inspired as this ad.

For more info and to join the Elektron mailing list for the Analog Four, click here.

Whoops, looks like there are some sounds on the web.  Pretty awesome from what I can tell-- excuse my quick dismissal earlier...

House of Disco - Free Download!

In celebreation of 7,000 soundcloud followers, the House of Disco - a London based record label - released this track by Sixth Avenue Express. The song, Take You Up, has a classic house beat with great stabs and rhythm. Check out House of Disco Records for more! - download here -

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Wednesday, November 7, 2012

Cosmonaut Grechko Strikes Again!

This track highlights some nice space between chords and emphasizes a great bass line. Congrats to Cosmonaut for such a bumpin' "version" of a great Blue Satellite track.  You can download this song for free - headphones suggested because of some great vocal stereo panning! 

Tuesday, November 6, 2012

Chordashian Piano Jam!

Hello great piano in a dance track! It's always nice to find a good piano jam in the middle of a groove. Don't agree? Well play it out and download it! Chordashian delivers a beautiful mix that takes funky elements to a new level.  As always FOLLOW US ON TWITTER for more amazing music.

Sunday, November 4, 2012

Get Arturia announces Spark Drum Machine Price Promotion

If you're a producer who's looking for a great drum plugin/controller combo, or if you've been eying up Arturia's Spark hardware and software combo, you're in luck for the next 2 months.  Arturia has announced that they're lowering the price of Spark (which includes the software and controller) from the usual $599 down to $399.  This is a pretty hefty sale (1/3 off!) and it's a great chance to get your hands on this tool.  Spark has gotten pretty good reviews around the web (though I haven't tried the original Spark or its controller), and I was personally a huge fan of the Vintage Drum Machine version, which works with the included controller.  So if you've been looking at Spark, or want to get hands on with your drum creation, take advantage of this sale-- it lasts until December 31st.

Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Tony Romera & Jordan Viviant - Alive (Bit Funk Remix)

Bit Funk is a Brooklyn indie dance producer and DJ.  He has some amazing remixes - an especially wonderful Treasure Fingers remix.  We caught this great track released a few days ago that features a deep house/classic house vibe. Check out his website for more!!

Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Goldroom's New Remix - Atlas Genius - Back Seat (Goldroom Remix)

We've been waiting for a new tune from Goldroom for short while now.  Producer Josh Legg tends to create dreamy, brilliant and clean remixes that sound like L.A. moved to a space beach. As usual, the arrangement is wonderful and forces the mind to wander! You can join Goldroom's mailing list here and follow him on twitter @goldroomtunes and download this track for free!

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Togu Audio Line releases updated Chorus Plugin TAL-Chorus-LX for free

If you're looking for a fancy but simple chorus plugin, or you already have the original TAL Chorus plugin and are dying for an update, you're in luck.  Togu Audio Line, the fantastic-- and mostly free-- plugin makers have released a 64 bit updated version of the chorus function included in their only premium synth, the TAL-U-NO-LX, a Juno 106 style plugin.  This chorus is modeled after the Juno series' chorus, and it's called the TAL-CHORUS-LX.  You can download it for free here, both PC and Mac compatible.  This plugin sounds great, and can be applied to a wide variety of sounds.  Perhaps my favorite is a Wurlitzer keyboard through this plugin, as it adds a nice big moving warmth to the sound.  It's been used by some big name artists as well-- I know Fred Falke is a fan.

If you like it, why not donate using their PayPal, or purchase their full Juno 106 recreation?

Monday, October 29, 2012

The Hair Kid - "Spring Fling"

I got a nice email last week from blog fan The Hair Kid, who's a synthesist himself, making a mix of instrumental tracks and rap tracks. Above is his instrumental "Spring Fling", which shows alot of promise for the future. Excellent beats, great warm synths, and a pretty awesome arrangement. THK says his gear includes "Moog Model D, Juno 106, DX7, Access Virus, Syntecno TeeBee and Akai S612."

Below is his album, so if you're any fan of rap in addition to electronic music, check it out.  Track 6 "Love Me Tender" has some great cut up production in the second half.

Hand in Hand - MAM

We're really excited to see this group of musicians grow in the next few months! MAM is a collaboration between two producers, Miguel Campbell and Matt Hughes. This track for Nice to Be Records is something soulful, crisp and well produced.  Although this track is not free from soundcloud, please play it out! (The whole EP is wonderful)

You can buy it here!


Eurythmics - Sweet Dreams (Are Made Of This) - Get That Sound

Have you ever wanted to sound like the Eurythmics? Future Music has a short little tutorial on copying the sound of "Sweet Dreams".  These are always nice little videos because they can give you ideas on how to use plugins, even if you aren't copying the sounds.  Check it out.

Moog Announces 500 Series Delay

Were you a fan of Moog's 500 series low pass filter?  Moog has just announced the next 500 series module, a delay effect, which will ship this December for $999.  I imagine this will be a hit with the higher-end producers, because it sounds pretty cool.  Delay, as many of you know, is a staple in electronic music, and Moog has fantastic experience with it, as with many other effects, through the Moogerfooger line.  Read the full details below.

Friday, October 26, 2012

Ableton announces Live 9 and the Push Controller

Wow.  Ableton has just stepped up and killed it with their announcement of Live 9 and their new controller Push.  Live 9 has a variety of great improvements over Live 8, many of which were demanded by the users themselves, like automation curves and automation to clips.  They've added the fantastic Glue Compressor as a standard to Live 9, and made visual editing in the EQ and compressor much easier as well.  The library, which was before clunky and slow, has been completely overhauled to make finding patches and plugins much quicker.  My favorite addition in Live 9 might be the conversion capabilities of audio to MIDI.  This means you can either sing a set of notes, and turn it into MIDI for a plugin, play some guitar notes and do the same, or beatbox a beat and turn that into a drum pattern on the computer.  This works with sampled audio, or you could easily drop in a track you enjoy.  Absolutely awesome.  MIDI transform has been upgraded, giving you the ability to get some great changes very quickly over a MIDI section.  Some great Max for Live devices have been added as well. All fantastic features-- nothing here is going to be skipped over and ignored.  I haven't heard any word on 64 bit support, but I'm hoping it's there.  64 bit is supported!

Chris Malinchak - "So Good to Me'

Earlier this week, the NYC based Label, FRENCH EXPRESS released a free track from artist Chris Malinchak. "So Good to Me" is a soulful house track that warms the listener and features some airy vocals. Definitely worth a free download for its addicting nature! Also, check out FRENCH EXPRESS for more FREE DOWNLOADS of artists like Moonboots and Perseus. (Oh everything is free to download! - Take it on the go!)

Wednesday, October 24, 2012

Joypopp - Addictions

I just got a cool new record from up-and-comers Joypopp today.  Their debut album Addictions has just hit iTunes (US, GB),  and I've been enjoying what I've heard so far-- reminds me a bit of early Madonna, but modernized as if it were mated with Passion Pit at times.  Plenty of synth here, with staccato italo bass at times and dreamy patterns at others.  Definitely a solid debut record and a band to watch.  Check out the sampler below!

Saturday, October 20, 2012

Small bits of Ableton Live 9 Information Leak out, Including Screenshots UPDATE: Video Added!

Via Ableton Live Forum

Perhaps too early to call for some, but it appears that some internal Ableton Live 9 screenshots have leaked out, showing off what appears to

be an upgraded compressor, spectrum for EQ, and a new browser. The small amount of information I can see so far says:

"contains the glue by cytomic. unclear whether this will be free.
updated eq 8 with new filters - less noise & artifacts, 48db hp/lp, q interaction, analyser (detachable), range control.
updated comp. new waveform display - a la fabfilter, expand mode, auto release.
updated gate new waveform display - a la fabfilter, control to stop chatter.
interface looks pretty much the same, but has a new browser design that looked pretty good."

This is pretty exciting for those of us who have been waiting for 64 bit support (which absolutely has to be included, otherwise Ableton is shooting themselves in the foot).

Here's hoping this release comes sooner than later!

How To Properly EQ - EQ Basics and Theory via MutrixOfficial

Here's a nice little video via Reddit via YouTube user MutrixOfficial on mixing.  Super simple concepts here that will be incredible helpful to anyone new to mixing, or not quite understanding the basic ideas.

"The basics of EQing that can give your track clarity
Download the stems for Come Alive:

Check out this article:


Wednesday, October 17, 2012

Moog updates Minitaur to Revolution 2

In a bit of a suprise move, Moog has updated their newest synth the Minitaur to revolution 2, which includes some impressive features.  Perhaps my favorite is the addition of savable patches, which was an early complaint against the Minitaur.  Now, by holding down the glide button, users can click the 1 or 2 "waveform" buttons to go from patch to patch, up to 100 in total.  These are of course loaded by the fantastic free plugin that Moog is giving out to anyone who registers their Minitaur online.  This move definitely adds to the value of the Minitaur tremendously, as the lack of patches may have discouraged some performers of taking it on stage.

In addition to this, Moog has also added some exceptional functionality in routing the control voltages to other parameters, and you're even able to pull midi through to a computer through these control voltages.  As the video demonstrates, the LFO of a CV controller routed through the Minitaur and make an Ableton Live filter move.  This is pretty awesome to just add on suddenly-- Moog definitely knows how to treat their customers.

This is actually very similar to the functionality added to the Monotribe, so I hope we see more companies looking to launch synths and improve on them later-- it only seals the deal for those of us who aren't early adaptors, and for those who have already purchased, it's a nice little bonus.

Full pres release below.

"Moog Music announced the release of Revolution 2 for its Minitaur Analog Bass Synthesizer, which was recently nominated for a 2013 TEC Award in the 'Musical Instrument (Hardware)' category. REV 2, which is a free update for Minitaur owners, unlocks a host of new performance features and implements a number of user requested updates to Minitaur and the free Minitaur Editor/Librarian.

FR009 / Future Feelings / Odyssey Remixes

Nice little selection of funky remixes here.

Tuesday, October 16, 2012

Alchemy 1.5 Review: New Update for a Huge Synth

Alchemy is one serious piece of music software.  Although it's more than 3 years old at this point, the recent release of version Alchemy 1.5 has brought some new additions to the table for Camel Audio's flagship instrument.  Just last year, it was rated as one of the public's favorite plug-ins on MusicRadar.  So what is Alchemy, and does it still stand up to the hype now?

Ride The Universe (Feat. Jane Elizabeth Hanley) - "A Little Better"

Here's the newest track from Ride the Universe, released on the Electronic Rumors label.  Clive knows how to pick 'em, and this one is no exception.  The track features Jane Elizabeth Hanley, who wowed everyone with her "Lisztomania" cover a couple years back, and again impresses here.  "A Little Better" has a great grooving bassline and catchy vocals.  We can also look for some great remixes ahead,  including one from Frankmusik.

Watch out for this one on November 5th on Juno, and the 19th for the rest of your outlets.

Press release below:

"The long awaited début single from Dreamwave supergroup is finally here!

After a string of acclaimed Nu-Disco reMixes are now ready to drop their première original single. A Little Better is a summery, funk fuelled, synth Disco juggernaut that features the sweet vocals of Jane Elizabeth Hanley from (Vulture Music) and is the first step on a wonderful galactic beach-party journey.

With reMixes from legendary Electro & Pop producer, rising stars of the Nu-Disco scene and, analog Disco guru and Disco-House master, A Little Better is going to be rocking dancefloors in the coming months. Get involved."

DopeDOD & MiniBrute

"Peter Songolo, producer for the critically acclaimed Dutch Hip Hop band "Dope DOD", shares his love for the MiniBrute analog synthesizer as it perfectly fits his needs for raw, aggressive urban & Dubstep basslines."

Monday, October 15, 2012

Chrome Brulée

So I'm still in the process of decoding what Chrome Brulée is, but I already love the name and style.  The video above shows what appears to be several artists (each coming from their own tape) in a quick demonstration of what this new collective is about-- synths, retro sounds, and an almost spooky masked man-- reminding me a bit of the 80s horror movies with great synth soundtracks.  But the main thing here is that these guys absolutely get it-- they show off awesome vintage gear, and judging by the audio above, make great sounding tracks.  I'm already wanting more.  Here's hoping we can some tracks sooner than later...

"In a world where music has become irrelevant, in a time where quantity comes over quality...a new force rises from within...armed with magic machines of ancient times...driven by pure passion and devotion.....fueled by the craft and skills of their forefathers....they will fight to make music free again...they will rage until the spirits of old will have their revenge....they go by the name....Chrome Brulee"

Saturday, October 13, 2012

Casette Club - "Body Lights (Nude Disco Remix)"

Sweet little remix here.  Relaxes me, and has some great sounds.

80s Saturday

Here are a couple tracks sent to me over the past few days, courtesy of Only You and Orange Trickster.  80s synths and sounds happening here.  Thanks for the submissions!

Tuesday, October 9, 2012

Excellent set of Ableton Live Tutorials via Future Music

Looking for new ways to get creative with Ableton Live?  Future Music has you covered.  They've uploaded some recent tutorials from their magazine as a free playlist on YouTube, so you can get a visual explanation of some great ideas, from DJing and sampling to MIDI tricks.  Check out the playlist above.

Sunday, October 7, 2012

DSI Mopho x4 Demo with Peter Dyer

Cool new video showing off dual DSI Mopho x4s and the Tempest.

Wednesday, October 3, 2012

Full Arturia Spark 1.5 Press Release

Yesterday, I posted a video from Arturia about the new update to Spark.  Version 1.5, available now, offers some great new features, including new kits, new ways to control via MIDI, and new implementation of drum sounds, like setting different velocities to different sounds, as opposed to just volume.

Here's the full press release, via Arturia:
"Arturia updates SPARK Creative Drum Machine to v1.5

GRENOBLE, FRANCE: music software and hardware company Arturia is shipping Version 1.5 of SPARK Creative Drum Machine, the latest update to its highly-creative hybrid hardware/software beat production centre, as of October 2...
Upon its June 2011 release, SPARK Creative Drum Machine revolutionised hands-on beat-making by cleverly combining analogue synthesis, physical modelling, and samples with the intuitive workflow of a hardware drum machine, as well as offering in-depth control over the sounds of the 30 classic analogue and digital drum machines it so successfully captured; now, with the introduction of Version 1.5, Arturia has taken the art of creative rhythm programming and performance to a whole new level with a dazzling array of new performance-orientated features and a truly heavyweight library totalling 118 kits/1,800 instruments!
New to Version 1.5 is the Tune feature, allowing users to easily compose melodies on the MIDI controller’s hardware drum pads and sequencer step buttons; the sample engine now enables Choke groups, so users can creatively specify samples that will cut each other off when triggered — perfect for emulating a hi-hat ‘choke’, for example (whereby triggering an open-hat sample first, followed immediately by a closed-hat sample will authentically cut off the open-hat prematurely), and also offers creative modes for layering samples (circular, random, stack, threshold); finally, the flexible FX Pad now includes the famed Oberheim SEM V filter featured in Arturia’s acclaimed Oberheim SEM V soft synth namesake, bringing unique warmth and depth to those still-sought-after synth sweeps.
Last, but by no means least, Version 1.5 sees SPARK Creative Drum Machine’s library considerably expanded to include no less than 28 new kits exploring the current span of electronic and urban music stylings — from euphoric EDM synths to almighty analogue dubstep kits, as well as the latest in alternative hip-hop, Arturia has teamed up with the world’s most in-demand sound designers to bring professional perfection to any production.
Thanks to Version 1.5, there has never been a better time than now to ignite your rhythmic creativity with SPARK Creative Drum Machine... beat the future!

SPARK Creative Drum Machine can be purchased from the Arturia online store ( or any dealer for €499.00 EURO/$599.00 USD

Hear the new Version 1.5 kits for SPARK Creative Drum Machine in action here:"

Tuesday, October 2, 2012

Rheyne - 10/1/12 - Live Jam #55 (with the MF3D Launcher)

Rheyne never quits with these great demonstrations of live looping.

Arturia Spark 1.5 New Features

Arturia's incredibly fun Spark plugin has been updated recently.  Check out some of the new abilities above.

"Mike Hosker, Director of Sound Design at Arturia, takes us on a video tour showing the new features of SPARK 1.5.  
See tips & tricks on how to boost your creativity and performance with the new Sample layering, Tune mode, and Choke groups features."

Looking for a new professional audio desk? UNTERLASS has you covered

Looking for a way to sharpen up that new studio, and have some extra room for your effects and rack synths?  Look no further than the new company UNTERLASS out of Austria, a brand new furniture-maker.  These are the Cadillacs of audio desks, coming in at a price of 1,780 euro.  However, I gotta say, they've got a great style to them.  No word on US distribution at this point, but one could certainly dream up a studio with a great desk...

Press release below.

Monday, October 1, 2012

Mopho x4 Song

"A little composition I made with my new DSI Mopho x4. Loving this instrument. All sounds are from mopho except for the drums."

Electribe House 1

"-Programmation des patterns sur L'EMX-1, mélodie créée avec mon Microkorg en fonction clavier Midi.-Programming patterns on the EMX-1, melody created with my Microkorg Midi keyboard based.

Korg Electribe EMX-1 SD"

Saturday, September 29, 2012

Chromeo Studio Tour

I'm sure I've mentioned this video before on the site, but it is finally freely available. You can check out Chromeo's studio, including all of their awesome gear, in the video above, courtesy of Future Music.

"In May 2011 FM travelled to Montreal to spend some time in the amazing analogue laden studio of Chromeo. They gave us a full and detailed tour of almost everything they had."

Wednesday, September 26, 2012

Kites - "This Jumped-up Boy in Livery" (Mindscramble remix)

Here's the newest remix from Mindscramble, the Manchester nu-disco wonder.  Man, does he get old school on this one.  Staccato bass, drum fills, the whole package for you lovers of the 80s era.  I bet you could fool anyone by slipping this in a regular 80s mix-- it's got true retro DNA.  Great track!

Tuesday, September 25, 2012

The Perfect Collaboration: Why Chromeo and Breakbot should do a record together

Breakbot's By Your Side is as smooth as modern funk gets.  The record keeps an old, "your mom and dad's record" vibe to it with its incredibly vintage production,  The record is never overbearing with its arrangement.  It is funk, with piano and fat bass throughout.

Chromeo have been longtime proponents of new funk, specifically a subdivision called electro-funk, due to their use of synthesizers and a talkbox.  Each record Chromeo has put out has been progressively more accessible and pop without compromising on the funk at heart-- it's as if Roger Troutman of Zapp and Hall & Oates magically had two children of their own.

She's the Queen's "Talk To Me" EP is here!

The fantastic full-blown official release of She's the Queen's official Talk To Me EP is here.  There's a superb array of remixers present in addition to the original stunning pop track.  The remixes feature head bobbing moments to full on get-up-and-rave times.  Be sure to grab the new EP on Juno or iTunes.  Don't forget to check out She's the Queen on SoundCloud or the label behind all this, the sensational Electronic Rumours.

Monday, September 24, 2012

Breakbot's "By Your Side" is Fantastic

Breakbot's new record By Your Side is my current to-and-from work music.  The record has taken me by surprise because I've never been the biggest Breakbot fan-- sure I've loved some of his remixes, but this new record is truly the pinnacle of his success.

Tuesday, September 18, 2012

Analog Drums for under $250? Meet the Delptronics LDB-1

Believe it or not, what you see above is a programmable analog drum machine for $240.  Based on circuitry from the drum machines of the 80s, the LDB-1 is a small programmable drum machine with hacking capabilities.  While the complete kit doesn't feature individual drum sound edits, it does have user programmable patterns, MIDI and modular capabilities, and if you decide to go cheaper, you can get a 140 dollar kit to build your own case, or add on those extra drum sound edits to push it even further.

If you're on a tight budget, this is absolutely a cool way to go for a drum machine, considering you can play this machine in a variety of ways, either through keyboard, or by mapping each step with the buttons.  Perhaps the only thing is falls short on is individual drum sound edits, but perhaps if this does well enough we'll see a revamped version with more knobs to tinker with.  To find out more or to buy the LDB-1, click here.

Ben Folds Five and Fraggle Rock all reunite for the "Do It Anyway" Music Video

You may recall months ago that I interviewed Ben Folds on his new record with Ben Folds Five.  Today, that record has come to fruition, complete with a fantastic new video with Fraggle Rock.  Yes, the Fraggle Rock we all enjoyed years and years ago.  This is a fantastic promotional video, so I highly recommend watching it, at least for nostalgic purposes.  Be sure to grab the new record on iTunes as well.  Bonus: behind the scenes below.

Saturday, September 15, 2012

Friday, September 14, 2012

ROOM8 to release album "Transduction"; hear the first single here

The emerging duo ROOM8 has just sent me their fantastic singles for their upcoming album, and I had to share-- it's great to have another band hit right on what this blog is all about.  Great synths and great music.  Below is the first single "Visions of You" which features Electric Youth, of Drive and "A Real Human Being" fame.  I have to say, I'm pretty excited for this release!  Be sure to check out the video for "Right Way" above and the B-side "Neon and Dice" below.

Here's a short description from the band:

"ROOM8 "Transduction" is a crossroads on the electronic highway. An audio film that takes place in a musical past, present, and future. The brain child of Ezra Reich and Nic Johns, "Transduction" features Electric Youth (from the neon noir hit "Drive"), Martha Davis (leader of classic New Wave icons, The Motels), the sax work of Ian Young from M83, guitar work from Giorgio Moroder arranger and guitar player and famed producer, Richie Zito, mixed with Gavin Mackillop (Human League, General Public, Heaven 17). With artwork by the legendary art collective, The Zonders."

Wednesday, September 12, 2012

New MiniBrute Videos; Supply issues are "nearly solved"

It appears that Arturia has finally cracked the supply issue that's left so many preorders unmet.  Apparently the cause of so many of the delays was a move to a new plant-- so hopefully this is the end of the incredibly long waiting times.  Years from now, there will be eBay auctions for "original factory" MiniBrutes, or "later edition"...

Also, check out new videos they've released above and below.  The above shows some inspiring looping, and the cool drum sounds possible with the MiniBrute.

Here's Arturia's official note:

Monday, September 10, 2012

Korg's 9/4 announcement more or less a publicity stunt; why must the biggest companies continue to make lame products?

"Man, Korg is really overdue for another workstation.  I really need a new one" - No one, ever
Korg's big 9/4 announcement, which they hyped up, revealed a new workstation, Krome, some special editions of the MicroKorg, and some other small items.  If you recall, in 2011, Korg unveiled the Kronos, another workstation.  At this point, the MicroKorg engine is 10 years old and hasn't really been changed.  So what gives?  Why did Korg blow this release up like it was something unique and special?  Yeah, I know they're trying to make money, but it strikes me as so dishonest.

Tuesday, September 4, 2012

VISITOR - Discobelle Midnight Paradise Mixtape [Free Download]

Looking for a new mix to jam to on the way to work?  Look no further.  Visitor has released a new 45 minute mix through discobelle, and it's got some fantastic moments.  It's also a free download.  Enjoy!

Sunday, September 2, 2012

Youtube: Laura Escudé plays live at Sonic Towers

Wow, this is some pretty cool work using Ableton Live.  She's also got the incredibly vibrant and cool Livid Instruments controller.  Check out her unique use of a live violin and how she processes it as well.

Miles Prower - 'Pneumatic' (Feat. Colleen Quinn)

Here's a nice little track from Miles Prower over in the UK.

Doepfer Dark Time + 2 Moog Little Phatties

Tonally, this is pretty awesome.

Friday, August 31, 2012

Visitor - COMING HOME (Viceroy Remix) [Free Download]

Here's the latest track from the upcoming Visitor release, Coming Home//RNB.  It's a free download, and a goodie, so check it out.  The EP will be released on the 10th of September.  Be sure to check it out, as the other tracks so far have all been stellar.

Novation announces the MiniNova


New synth from Novation.  Digital, in the same style as the MicroKorg, but with some nice extra features.  Check out the videos from Novation.

Thursday, August 30, 2012

Korg to announce a new product on 9/4. Will it be a MiniBrute competitor?

While the above are only renders, Korg is set to announce a new product on September 4th.  Because the MiniBrute is selling so well and no retailer can keep it in stock, could Korg be finally stepping in to capitalize on some fans who are tired of waiting?

Roland is also set to announce a new instrument tomorrow, but due to the company's track record with new analogs, it seems unlikely.  But again, perhaps the temptation of seeing companies do well will open their mind.

The above renders are an unlikely but awesome reality, so let's hope we get something close to that.

Wednesday, August 29, 2012

A nice collection of EXS24 sounds and Logic Tutorials

If you head over to, you can find an excellent selection of free EXS24 presets of vintage drum machines, or just the drum samples themselves for any of you non-logic users.  There's also a host of Tutorials if you're new to Logic and want to pick up some skills.  I uncovered this site while searching for some EMU Emulator sounds.  Here's a link to the some EMU SP-12 sounds, which are awesomely retro, as well.

Check it out!

Madeon - The City

At this point you either love or hate Madeon.  Here's his newest track in his string of singles, and this one is his poppiest and most radio friendly to date.  If anything, Madeon's certainly setting his sights on radio play at this point.  What do you think?

Saturday, August 25, 2012

The Making of Mama - Genesis

I came across this incredible collection of home videos of Genesis making their self titled record (called the Mama record in some instances) and I thought I had to share it since it's such a cool look into making records at the time. There are multiple videos of this, so hopefully the playlist works correctly.  You can hear them doing multiple tracks from the album.  Check it out.

Friday, August 24, 2012

Rheyne - 8/23/12 - Live Jam #51

Rheyne never ceases to amaze with his jam skills.  Such a cool little setup and he releases so many of these.  Nice work!

Clouds (The Sanfernando Sound Remix)

Here's a new remix video from The Sanfernando Sound.  Some incredible old-school sounds on this one, and the introduction is pure Blade Runner.  What more could you ask for?

Thursday, August 23, 2012

VISITOR - COMING HOME (Lifelike Remix)

Now this remix has been floating around for roughly a year now, but it has finally found its way to a proper release, and I'm very excited.  Lifelike is absolutely magical in his reworking of "Coming Home" by Visitor.  This is a perfect track for the club, with an incredible head bob fist pump quality to it.  Dig it.

Wednesday, August 22, 2012

Jupiter-8V2 Review - How does the Jupiter stand up with a fresh pair of 64-bit legs?

From the upgraded collection of the Arturia plugins comes another vintage synth, the Jupiter-8V2.  The Jupiter-8 is, again, regarded as one of the classic and legendary 80s synths.  A quick look on eBay will show you that right now, these are hot, going for as high as $8,000, which is money you could build an entire studio with.  The Roland Jupiter-8 was first released in 1981 and was Roland's first great synth.  It offered all the bells and whistles of the time-- it was multitimbral, it had an arpeggiator, dual oscillators for each of the 8 voices, and two envelopes.  These are pretty standard and almost expected today, but at the time, it was an important step forward.  Roland filters have always had a unique sound to them, and the Jupiter-8 is no different, being the favorite for many who are making string sounds.  Of course, it does many other fantastic sounds as well.

Peter Gabriel and Fairlight CMI

Here's an old video of Peter Gabriel working in the studio.  Gotta love his use of the Fairlight CMI and his creative songwriting.

Monday, August 20, 2012

Topless Interview

Topless is a stunning duo from the Netherlands breaking on to the scene with incredible retro style and 80s synth grooves.  The band's eponymous EP arrived early this year with the fantastic single "Say You Love Me" (video and track below), among other old-school hits.  I was immediately intrigued by the perfect balance of high production quality without skimping on the retro vibe, so I had to get in touch with Topless.  The band was signed to Instant-Replay last year, so thankfully, plenty more music is on the horizon.  Be sure to read the full interview below.

Besides, when else can you search the word "Topless" and genuinely not intend to find something dirty?

Modified Concertmate/Moog MG1 Samples

"Sorry about the video cut out near the end...the camera ran out of memory. The audio is recorded directly from an added 1/4" audio out jack in the back.

A very small sample of possible sounds with the following modifications:

- Four LFO Speeds: 1/4 Original, 1/2 Original, Original, and Hyper speed
- Contour to Tone Source 2 for Sync Sweep or Pitch Swoops
- Disengage LFO to Tone Source 1
- Octave switch for Tone Source 1 for four octaves: -3, -2, -1, 0.
- TS1/TS2 Frequency Modulation"

Courtesy of MatrixSynth

Saturday, August 18, 2012

Mopho x4 Demo- Dave Smith Instruments

Since everyone is looking for more information from the new DSI Mopho x4, I thought I'd reshare this video from DSI showcasing some of the new sounds.

"Carson Day demonstrates some factory sounds on our new Mopho x4 polyphonic analog synthesizer. Except for the programs that are obviously played on the keyboard, the x4 is receiving MIDI data from an external sequencer in this demo."

Fred Falke at the Blockley Review, August 17th, 2012

Fred with opener Goldroom while switching between sets
Hey everyone.  Got to check out Fred Falke playing at the Blockley in Philadelphia last night.  If you've seen Fred before, you know it's a treat.  Fred combines standard DJing through Ableton Live with live bass playing.  It adds a really fun element into the mix and it's not your standard "turn knobs all night" affair.  He's got a huge selection of fantastic tracks and remixes to choose from, so there's never a dull moment in the set.  He even mixed in some funky drum and bass just to keep things interesting.

Some highlights for me include "Reaching Out", which is a Hall and Oates/Nero mix, which builds up to jumping moments.  There's also the always popular remix of Robyn, which takes "Dancing On My Own" from a pumping pop song into a smoother, bassier affair.

Also, have to give a shoutout to Goldroom who opened with an excellent set of his own.

Be sure to check the rest of Fred's upcoming tour dates on here on Facebook.  Seriously, I wouldn't miss any of these.

Check out more pictures below.