Diary — 2019 March

Håkon Robbestad Gylterud

This is my public diary.

2019–03–02, Saturday

Back from Oslo, where I gave a talk at CAS (slides).

Home in Bergen, we had wonderful weather yesterday, but today it was back to more familiar 2°C and sleet. Didn’t stop me from enjoying our balcony, which is glassed in and heated.

On the balcony, I am watching a series called Molten Modular on YouTube. The series, in addition to being a fabulous show of shirts, is a pleasant intro to EuroRack. The thing is that Robin Vincent, the creator of the Molten Modular series, is learning modular synthesis as the series goes along. This kind of learning from beginners has its pros and cons, but as long as one keeps a positive, critical attitude, it can stimulate one’s own learning very well.

2019–03–16, Saturday

Add two tracks to my list (007 and 008). Both are just recordings of me playing with patches. I like both patches, but for different reasons.

The first patch is perhaps most insteresting: There are three oscillators on it, each one playing different tones from a chord. They each walk through the chord, but always separated by 90° on a triangle wave. Then the sounds are mixed in everchanging porportions. The prominent effect is a low-pass resonance filter, where the resonant frequency is on a saw shaped LFO. This give the cyclic drops which give a somber beat to it. There is a bit of FM thrown in for flavour, and my favourite LADSPA canyon delay (from the cmt package) sits at the end.

The second patch was fun to play. It is just the AMS random module at high speed playing two oscillators. It switches between minor and pentatonic, which gives the patch some life. For this patch I had my MIDI controller connected to transpose the oscillators and one of the bottons basically controlled on or off the high pitched solo voice you can hear. The track is basically me playing that one botton like a rock star guitar hero, and even though there are a lot of imperfections in this track I decided it needs to be uploaded.

Last year, I bought a Omnitronic FAD.9 MIDI controller, and I have found surprisingly useful – not just controlling parametrs for modular synths, but also to control jack_mixer. In my setup I have jack_mixer as the main mixer of my system. So I can use the FAD.9 to control the volume both from JACK native programs (such as Audacious, Audacity, Alsa Modular Synth and Rosegarden).

Now the only thing I am missing is a plugin for Audacious which lets me use some of the buttons on the FAD.9 to control the music playback, and I will be back to the kind of setup I had in my teens: Then I had a joystick controlling Winamp, and it was the best music experience ever. I could play Unreal Tournament while listening to music, not having to swtich out of Unreal to change song.

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