Saturday, September 13, 2014

Progress 14-09-13

©2014 Linda Palmer
Nothing shows you how you've progressed as a musician like playing with other musicians. I enjoy playing with others, as it's a fun social activity as well as a challenge to  see if you can use what you know. However, sometimes things just don't gel when you jam.

I fell into the groove several times despite the overall failure to jibe, but playing by ear only gets you so far, and the band plodded on without me on a couple of tunes.  The drummer and bassist were solid, so I got my best stuff trying to play off of the bassist.

In my studio, things are back in order. Work and learning continue, and things are developing. I hope to come up with some templates for Ableton, but I keep revising the projects as I learn new things. Suffice to say that Ableton has many, many options.

Listening:  Peter Cline's Ascension

Sunday, September 7, 2014

Progress 14-09-07

©2014 Linda Palmer
This week found a lot of discovery centering around my latest and very connected setup.  It's not much more than just putting in the time to make music, and work with the equipment in this configuration.

Having standardized a lot of the setup, I was able to tie down cables and tidy up the workspace. It works very efficiently now, and just in time for me to take it down again. Some old friends have invited me to jam with them, and I'll be taking the whole thing.

I should have some fun jamming with these guys. They do a jazzy surf thing, and would like to add some keys. I always enjoy the laid back surf jam, and have been tempted by that style. It'll be fun, and I'm listening to a special playlist of Television and Adrian Belew to get my head together. I can't see me doing the theremin in Good Vibrations.

My own work continues. Shake Map is coming together nicely. It is decidedly un-surfy. I've been playing with a lot of TR-808 tones, and have spun off a couple of little improvs in Ableton Live from working with it. As the vocals take shape, the arrangement begins to gel, and I'll be laying the rhythm parts down soon.

I've been using my SH-201 in very analog fashion, using the 4 LFO's per voice (2 voices) to create pitch , filter, and envelope changes. Although I'd like to sync the LFO's to the beat, the only way to do this is to sync Ableton with the SH-201. However, if you do this, then the LFO's won't be controllable. Switch it around to external control of Ableton, and Ableton can become unresponsive. I'll continue working with this problem, hopefully finding a solution.

Listening:  Odd Common's Never Been to Sheffield

Monday, September 1, 2014

Mandala 13 1

I'm excited to see that my work Cycle 2 has been used in a video by color spinner A. Minor. This is a shorter version to fit this minute and a half video, and was the version I used in the Electric Future Podcast. Here it is, enjoy.

Sunday, August 31, 2014

Progress 14-08-31

©2014 Linda Palmer
I find myself in the moment and content this morning. Looking back at this month here, it's definitely been one of progress. My first podcast was well received, the animation featuring my Supersaw Loop Cycle 2 is about to be released, and we've had some great tunes to review.

On the work front, a couple of new tunes are developing nicely.

I'm working a lot on a new piece tentatively called Shake Map. The lyrics are developing as an earthquake theme. The new setup is assisting the writing process greatly, integrating the Beatstep with the rest. The Beatstep has made me more comfortable using arpeggiators now, and having the synced ability in Ableton Live with the drums is fun. TR 808 sounds are featured.

I'm just beginning a  couple of other pieces in the same vein, and will go back to a couple of older pieces that remain unfinished soon, using what I've learned in the last couple of months.

UPDATE: Now adding that the video is live. We'll post it here tomorrow!

Now listening: The Geeky Disco Experiment's B├╝rgerablage

Saturday, August 23, 2014

The Future of Electricity

I learned a few things about making a podcast this week, finishing up the Electric Future podcast for August 2014. It's a simple collection of my music, spliced with silly grain delay voice over.

If you'd like to hear it, it's here:

And, thanks again for listening!

Sunday, August 17, 2014


The pulse of subtly distorted synth greets you upon your arrival to Lietzensee, a tantalizing glimpse of the journey that  is about to begin. This electronic tour of Berlin, The Geeky Disco Experiment's latest effort Berlinerisch.

The pace is set and driving for the rest of the album after the clicking and rocking trance of the opening cut, which reminds of a long road trip at night, all blurred lights piercing the night.

This effort is a little different than  prior efforts, as the artist continues to evolve. These songs drift into electropop territory. Many times listening to the album I nearly expected a vocal to pop up, something dark in German, I'd imagine. The trance is maintained carefully,

Head bopping along through the album, each piece finds a groove, pursuing it to conclusion. The variation of the elements of each song keep it interesting. Crunchy drum samples, infectious bass lines, ethereal keys floating over, all combined to good effect. The artist is seasoned and solid.

Grab it at Bandcamp. 

Saturday, August 16, 2014

Meter Bridge

The serene snow owls on the cover of the debut EP from Canadian artists Meter Bridge might be misleading. They seem to be cute little things in a bank of clean snow, but perhaps they were put there to watch. Perhaps the owls were meeting for to exchange information in the remote wilderness. What do they watch right off of the screen there? Are they surveying for national security, or is it something a bit different?

From the first cut of Secret we here the chorus of whispers of those out in the dark, a strangled shout of a world full of deception.  The cloak and dagger continues in Glimpse, a pulsing synth bed provides the background for a hushed meeting in clandestine secrecy, with promises of information. Kite is sent up as a distress signal, while that Marvelous Proposition just might pay off. Guidance asks for advice, while  the love theme of our spy flick is Missing You, a song of absence. And those Tiny Lights, just what are they? The themes remind me of Eno in a good way.

I enjoyed the arrangements of voice, electronica, and guitar. The analog feel is definitely there, and the title earns it's electronic dance music moniker. Retro and future meet, in hushed tones, to dance in a quite place. I found it spare in just the right way.

You can pre-order it on bandcamp right now. Release date is September 2nd, 2014. Find out more about Meter Bridge on their website: