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Wednesday, March 4, 2015

Distant Dozings - Out Now! [free download available]

"Distant Dozings: An Audible Journey From Volterock," is now officially released! This is our first compilation and is currently available as a free download on bandcamp.

Visit this page and click/touch "Free Dowonload"

Some truly remarkable artists gathered together to take you on this journey:

  • Nahneen Kula
  • VoltageCtrlr
  • Squishy Flip
  • Final Sketch feat. rgLed
  • Producer Snafu
  • Zonra
  • Ned Rush
  • The Byte Stripes
  • Morpion
  • qebrus
  • HeavenlyFather
  • iameb 57
  • Nicholas Yochum
  • Atman's Unreal
  • fin2limb
  • Kelkco (designer of the album artwork) 
Listen to the short demo:
or download it now here

Radio of the Month (March): FNOOB

is the Volterock Radio of the Month!

FNOOB is the Volterock radio of the month featuring techno 24/7! They began in June, 2010 and support the true underground techno culture.

"Through its popularity, FNOOB's residents and owners have ventured into throwing parties in various venues around the world with the focus being on its community spirit ethos rather than commercial enterprise. 

FNOOB does not make profit and is privately run and funded. FNOOB also raises funds for maintenance costs through online donations, merchandise and event ticket sales, and minor sponsorship and advertising."

Listen here: http://www.fnoobtechno.com/

Follow and like:

Go here for previous Volterock radio shows and stations of the month.

Friday, February 27, 2015

NAMM 2015: Until Next Time

Photo by Jesse Grant/Getty Images for NAMM
And that concludes our NAMM Show coverage for 2015 in Anaheim, California and it certainly was a remarkable year! Out of the 114 years of existence, The NAMM Show grew to the largest and most inclusive event in history with a 6% increase in exhibiting companies from last year!

This was also our 5th year of coverage, and the adventure gets more exciting every year!
See you next time!

- The Volterock Crew


M  O  O  G
Stevie Wonder couldn't pass up some Moog synths
This year, MOOG Inc. created their own enclosed gallery of synthesizers and pictures with a tribute to these classic synth wizards, legends in their own right:

In the center were a few classic modular synthesizers sometimes accompanied by a performance.

Here is Malcom Cecil performing, and yes, that is Eric Persing in the background 
enjoying his amazing talent:

Even Keith Emerson was gravitated towards the MOOG:

Bob Moog also built theremins
On the outside was this neon sign illuminating the mystery of what was within:

NAMM 2015: David Anthony, Stevie Wonder, Plastikman

Also spotted this year at the NAMM Show was:

David Anthony, recording engineer and DJ, was hanging out at the Music Marketing booth.

Listen to some of his mixes:


Music Marketing

Stevie Wonder
He was awarded the official Mayor of NAMM a few years ago. 
Photo by Jesse Grant/Getty Images for NAMM

Hanging with the modular synthheads
Photo by Natefrogg

Monday, February 23, 2015

NAMM 2015: Dave Smith

Photo by Natefrogg
The Father of MIDI brings us a gorgeous new six voice analog poly synth with the Prophet 6.
Voltage control takes command of the analog oscillators, amplifiers, and filters. The signal path is fully analog if you'd like, though it is also fun to go the hybrid approach and engage the onboard 24bit, 48khz digital effects. The effects section consists of a stereo distortion (this effect is analog), bbd and standard style delays, phase shifter, chorus, and reverbs to spice it up a bit, or a lot if you prefer. The digital love doesn't end here; the Prophet 6 has an awesome polyphonic step sequencer that can do 64 steps and up to 6 notes per step, including rests, the sequencer and the arpeggiator can be synced to a midi clock for even more digitally controlled action. While not deep in the modulation department, there is enough to sink your teeth into with the second oscillator and the filter envelope as modulation sources. These sources can be set bi polar and can be routed to the frequency, pulse width or shape of oscillator 1, as well as low and hi pass filter cutoff. Modulation destinations can also be controlled through aftertouch on the keyed. Each voice has two continuously variable oscillators and a sub oscillator. The oscillators can move from triangle to sawtooth to pulse wave with variable width. Once you get your sounds dialed in just right you can save it as a user preset where there is memory space for 500 user presets. The Prophet 6 ships with an additional 500 built in presets as well. The four octave keys are a joy to play. They are semi-weighted and sensitive to aftertouch and velocity. Playing chords with the aftertouch linked to the filter was quite meditative - great pads and ambient sounds come to life and sound huge as they move, maybe too alive if you crank the aptly named slop knob all the way up - this can introduce more slop to the VCOs. In my opinion it is best to leave the slop set quite low so it is barely discernible. Don't be fooled by the Sequential logo on the back. The Prophet 6 is not meant to be a reissue of the Prophet 5 that Dave Smith worked on so long ago. The Prophet 6 marries proven old school technology with modern digitally controlled precision in a perfect balance of harmony. You can get yours this spring for around $2800.

Dave Smith explains his latest work in synthesis, the Prophet 6:

Written by Natefrogg

Sunday, February 22, 2015

NAMM 2015: Elektron & The Elektron Overbridge

Photo by Natefrogg
Elektron has built up quite a reputation for itself over the years with their take on the all-in-one music box approach, somewhat similar to Roland's Micro Composer line and Korg's Electribe line from the 90's, but with far greater in-depth control of synthesis parameters and sequencing capabilities. Not one to rest on their laurels, Elektron has a major update to their newest machines that brings them into harmonious copulation with computer based Digital Audio Workstations. Overbridge will bridge the gap between Elektron machines and the computer based workstation that lives at the heart of most recording studios. It provides full VST and AU support of the Elektron Analog Four, Analog Keys, and Analog RYTM; allowing for total integration with Mac and PC computers, providing deep visual control of these Elektron boxes from the computer screen. Imagine being able to see what each parameter for a voice in the Analog Four is set to, all at once on a large 27" monitor; performing sound design completely from the front panel. Analog Four works okay once the user gets used to it, but this can be a bit tedious going back and forth between the pages and sub-pages of controls, the option to see and control everything at once will greatly speed up workflow in this respect; not to mention, if the Analog Four had knobs for each parameter then it would likely be 5~6 times larger than it already is!

Overbridge does more than just control and display the parameter settings from a computer screen, it actually allows audio transport to occur over USB, this means that each channel on the Analog Four can be recorded into a DAW as completely separate tracks rather than the stereo pair that the Analog Four comes equipped with. On a personal note, I welcome this capability of separate audio channel recording when doing studio based work. In my experience I have found that the Analog Four can get quite muddy if used for multiple bass instruments and low frequency percussion at the same time. For example, without an equalizer onboard, it can make things quite difficult to fit well with each other where channels are not stomping upon each other. Overbridge provides a great workaround for this kind of problem when recording, being able to break out the individual channels this way adds much to the functional of the Elektron machines that Overbridge will support. It should be noted that this audio streaming is bi-directional - not only can you record multiple channels over a USB connection at once, it is also possible to send audio from the DAW to the Elektron - and if you wanted to send a mixdown through the fabulous compressor of the Analog RYTM then it is incredibly easy to do so with Overbridge; having the option to quickly and painlessly use the Elektron boxes as sound modules or effects units seamlessly with a computer based DAW opens up an enormous amount of possibilities for music production in the studio.

Overbridge can effectively turn the Elektron machines into multi-channel USB sound cards. It allows for visual control of all sound engine parameters and it greatly extends what is possible with these instruments while working alongside a DAW, and best of all it will be given away free once Elektron has completed their work. The initial projected completion date has passed by already, but that's okay, it is best for Elektron to release Overbridge only when it is finished rather than half baked. Have patience Elektronauts, Overbridge is coming and it will change the way you work with these fine instruments.

Sonic State has an in-depth video of Elektron Overbridge technology here:

Written by Natefrogg 

Wednesday, February 18, 2015

John L Rice

Also at the NAMM show this year, we met John L. Rice, a modular synthesist, drummer, percussionist, photographer, videographer, writer, and technician! He has an awesome youtube channel where he showcases his art & demos. Observe: