Inside Robert Rich’s Soundscape Studio

[embedded content]

The Electro-Music Performers Organization (TE-EMPO) hosted a live streaming workshop and discussion with synthesist and ambient music artist Robert Rich last Sunday, and has now shared the video from the event, embedded above.

Robert Rich has been making music for over 40 years, creating unique soundworlds of microtonal tunings, DIY acoustic and electronic instruments and intricate rhythms. He’s released more than 50 albums, starting with Sunyata in 1982, and including collaborations with a wide range of ambient artists, including Steve Roach, Ian Boddy, B. Lustmord and others.

Rich also has an active career as a sound design, including work for film; presets and wavetables for hardware synths from E-Mu, Sequential, Synthesis Technology and others; and presets for software synths, including Camel Alchemy.

Rich, along with Carter Scholz, also developed the MIDI Tuning Standard, which supports microtuning on hardware and software synthesizers.

The two-hour workshop starts with an introduction from host Michael Hunter and then a discussion about Rich’s approach to sound design, microtonality, composing and more. This is followed by a wide-ranging Q&A session.

You can find out more about Rich and his music at his site.

Teenage Engineering OP-1 Update Adds USB Audio Streaming

As part of their 10 year anniversary celebration of their OP-1 synthesizer, Teenage Engineering has released a free update that adds streaming audio over USB.

This means you can now sample and record from USB audio, or record to your computer via USB.

Here’s what they have to say about the OP-1 update:

“OP-1 is now capable of streaming stereo audio over usb. using the knowledge from developing usb audio for the OP–Z, teenage engineering has brought this functionality to the OP-1.

features include sampling and recording directly from usb audio and live audio streaming to usb host. in effect, this is giving all OP-1 users a handy usb sound card, for easy recording straight to a computer. it works with both pc and mac, as well as with ios and android.

in addition to a range of other fixes and improvements, external sync stability has been greatly improved. OP-1 now offers tight sync to your OP–Z or other external midi devices using midi sync.”

OP-1 OS 243 release highlights:

  • USB audio device in & out.
  • External tempo sync stability improved.
  • When tape is armed and OP-1 receives a play command, recording now starts.


The Teenage Engineering OP-1 update is available now as a free download.

You can now collaborate with an AI version of Holly Herndon

The forward-thinking artist has launched her own take on vocal deepfakes 

Declan McGlynn

Wednesday, July 14, 2021 – 16:28

Holly Herndon has launched a new ‘digital twin’ version of herself called Holly+. The new virtual alternative is built using machine learning and AI and can sing any song or melody uploaded to the Holly+ website in Holly’s voice. Anyone can upload any audio file and the AI instrument – made in conjunction Never Before Heard Sounds – will attempt to recreate it based on thousands of hours of machine learning. 

But it gets more innovative – the intellectual property of any recreations will then be subject to a newly-created Decentralised Autonomous Organisation (DAO). Any funds generated by the usage and licensing of the tools will be shared with the co-op to fund new tool development. Eventually, approved art made with Holly+ will be able to be auctioned via NFT auction platform Zora. 

“Vocal deepfakes are here to stay,” said Herndon. “A balance needs to be found between protecting artists and encouraging people to experiment with new and exciting technology. That is why we are running this experiment in communal voice ownership.”

While DAOs, deepfakes and AI have been circling the music industry for some time, it’s the first time an artist has cloned a version of themselves for the benefit of a wider creative community. Find out more about Holly+ here, from Holly Herndon herself. Try out Holly+ for yourself here

Venues will not need to reapply for the Shuttered Venue Operators Grant

Venues will not need to reapply for the Shuttered Venue Operators GrantBar Crowd

As music venues continue to struggle to make their way back after the past year of near financial ruin, the Small Business Administration (SBA) has said that there will be no need to reapply for grants from the Shuttered Venue Operators Grant (SVOG).

Those eligible for SVOG assistance include venues that have seen a 70% or more loss of funds throughout the pandemic due to closures. Now, the SBA has revealed that those who applied and were approved to receive grants in the first two tiers of applications will not need to resubmit in order to receive additional funding.

After first opening up to allow venues to apply for SVOG in March, struggling venues quickly sent in their applications, with the overwhelming demand causing the site to crash. After delays in dispersing the initial funds, a little more than $3 billion has now been spread throughout venues across the country. So far, $4 billion in supplemental grants remains of the $16 billion reserved.

Those who already received a grant and are eligible for more funding will be provided with half of their initial funds in a supplemental grant. Venues who did not receive funds due to their application being denied, and are not suspected of fraud, will be provided with a 14-day period to appeal. While the grant primarily provides funding for shuttered venues, music festivals, and amphitheaters that have also seen a 70% loss of funds will also become eligible.

H/T: Billboard

Featured image: Rebecca Smeyne

The post Venues will not need to reapply for the Shuttered Venue Operators Grant appeared first on Dancing Astronaut.

Tycho teams with Death Cab for Cutie frontman Benjamin Gibbard for new single ‘Only Love’

Tycho teams with Death Cab for Cutie frontman Benjamin Gibbard for new single ‘Only Love’Tycho

Tycho has released a new single with Death Cab for Cutie frontman Benjamin Gibbard, “Only Love.” Melding together Tycho’s production expertise and Gibbard’s signature vocals, the peaceful instrumentals carry forth a comforting tune that contrasts with Gibbard’s environmental message. Advocating to preserve the environment in order to save the planet, the lyrics, “only love will save this place,” float through the track. Tycho said of the collaboration in a press release,

“Ben’s voice was a very inspiring element to work with from a production standpoint, I felt it really meshed well with the kinds of sounds and instrumentation I gravitate towards.”

Tycho is gearing up to to curate his own festival in Brooklyn, called TYCHO : ISO50, which will highlight his work as a producer, photographer, and graphic designer. See the accompanying visual for “Only Love” below.

Featured image: Pass The Aux

The post Tycho teams with Death Cab for Cutie frontman Benjamin Gibbard for new single ‘Only Love’ appeared first on Dancing Astronaut.

Matisse & Sadko, Alex Aris channel progressive house bliss on third collaboration, ‘Dawn’

Matisse & Sadko, Alex Aris channel progressive house bliss on third collaboration, ‘Dawn’214169997 1643247295858999 8740447459823039698 N

Things that age better than Matisse & Sadko‘s brand progressive house are few and far between. The Russian brothers previously alluded to a release this summer that falls firmly in progressive territory, and they held true to their word on “Dawn.” For a second go-around this year alone, Matisse & Sadko have roped in none other than Alex Aris, following their STMPD RCRDS meetup, “Heal Me,” totaling their third collective outing dating back to “Mistaken.”

“Dawn” not only cements the collaborative energy between Matisse & Sadko and Aris, it also reopens the doors to the duo’s longstanding label Monomark Music for the first time in more than two years’ time. Similar to their stunning “Heal Me” visual that found them inside Saint Petersburg’s Street Art Museum, Matisse & Sadko set the scene for their newest Alex Aris pairing while atop a small boat just off the coast of their hometown’s shore, bringing back a one-two punch of their vintage progressive house sound and Aris’s luminous vocals as the sun begins to fall in the background.

Featured image: Nik Agapov

The post Matisse & Sadko, Alex Aris channel progressive house bliss on third collaboration, ‘Dawn’ appeared first on Dancing Astronaut.

Justin Bieber and The Kid LAROI’s ‘Stay’ gets remix treatment courtesy of GUMMiBEAR

Justin Bieber and The Kid LAROI’s ‘Stay’ gets remix treatment courtesy of GUMMiBEARUnnamed 1

GUMMiBEAR has done a commendable job of planting his flag over the last several months. Delivering a steady stream of original works and remixes alike, GUMMiBEAR heads back to where he started in October of 2020, delivering his second Justin Bieber remix of the calendar year. Following an earlier rework of Bieber’s Chance The Rapper-assisted “Holy,” the emerging producer is back with another Bieber take, this time laying a unique spin on “Stay” featuring The Kid LAROI.

In the time since GUMMiBEAR’s introductory offering, the enigmatic new force on the scene has dropped off timely remixes of 1980’s groundwork from Michael Jackson and Shannon, as well as a handful of original works as his catalog continues to be built out. Bieber’s vocal pop stylings are proving to be a safe framework from GUMMiBEAR’s remix efforts, and with his new take on “Stay,” GUMMiBEAR continues carving out a notable upward trajectory. Listen below.

The post Justin Bieber and The Kid LAROI’s ‘Stay’ gets remix treatment courtesy of GUMMiBEAR appeared first on Dancing Astronaut.

Premiere: k?d shares new HARD Summer mixtape ahead of festival’s comeback run

Premiere: k?d shares new HARD Summer mixtape ahead of festival’s comeback runKd Press Pic

With more than a decade under HARD Summer‘s belt, the distinguished dance and hip-hop event has proven to live up to its name, and then some. Every year prior to the festival, fans are bestowed with artist mixes that send listeners reeling and heads banging, and this year is no exception as dance music wonder k?d steps onto the proverbial podium.

Wasting no time, k?d bursts into the mixtape with his latest release and first of 2021, “BIB,” alongside Steve Aoki. The 45-minute escapade is riddled tracks that convey the producer’s relatively recent transition into hardstyle, drum ‘n’ bass, and an eclectic sound that verges on 90s warehouse nostalgia with a range of inspirations in between. While known for exploring alternative avenues even within his own sound, k?d attunes his new mix to that of HARD Summer’s attendees, doling out crowd-favorites from the likes of Skrillex, Virtual Self, NGHTMRE, and DJ Snake, not to mention an exhilarating batch of IDs. For those that generally need a midday caffeine kick, skip it today—this mix is likely all you’ll need.

HARD Summer sees its return back to San Bernardino’s NOS Events Center from July 31 – August 1. Be sure to grab tickets to the the summer season’s favorite festival here, and stream k?d’s HSMF mix here on Dancing Astronaut.

The post Premiere: k?d shares new HARD Summer mixtape ahead of festival’s comeback run appeared first on Dancing Astronaut.

180,000 people attend EXIT Festival in Serbia 

180,000 people attended EXIT Festival in Serbia between 8th and 11th July, marking Europe’s biggest event since the start of the coronavirus pandemic and the continent’s first major festival of the summer. 

Attendees from more than 70 countries were on-site over the course of four days and nights, with more than 50% of the crowd coming from outside the country. Artists including David Guetta, Charlotte de Witte, Roni Size, Amelie Lens, Nina Kraviz, Maceo Plex, DJ Snake, and Paul van Dyk featured on the mammoth lineup. 

In May, organisers announced plans to offer 3,000 free tickets to medical workers, with “a few thousand” doses of coronavirus vaccines also secured in conjunction with the Serbian Health Ministry for artists and foreign nationals. At the time, Serbia had one of the best vaccination records in the world. 

“I knew this year’s event was more than just a festival, it was a movement of people, ready to do whatever it takes to keep human connections at the forefront of our existence. Festivals are generally made to promote values worth living for and we are determined to prove that festivals can be organised safely even during a pandemic,” said EXIT’s co-founder and CEO, Dusan Kovacevic. 

“A festival is only as strong as its fanbase and during there 4 days we had a gathering of probably the most passionate festival fans in Europe and beyond,” he added. “The ones that didn’t mind coming despite all uncertainties, cancellations and travel, PCR tests and other obstacles. They felt the same superstrong need we had all this time – a need for us to be together no matter what, united as one by power of music and life. 

EXIT rolled out a strict COVID-19 protocol for this year’s event, which marks 20 years of the treasured institution. Entry was only permitted with proof of vaccination, antibodies, or a negative test, taken either before arrival in Serbia or at the festival’s own test zone, which carried out 14,000 swabs to detect those carrying the virus. The event took place as several other European countries prepare for festivals to return, including the UK which will remove most of its remaining coronavirus restrictions on Monday 19th July

Exclusive: Loud Luxury to headline Monster Energy’s Up & Up Festival

Exclusive: Loud Luxury to headline Monster Energy’s Up & Up FestivalLoud Luury Echostage Soundazed By Matt Torres 11

Monster Energy‘s 2021 Up & Up Festival will be headlined by Loud Luxury. Up & Up, the nation’s number one college festival brand, is built around a model akin to basketball’s Final Four: in a 48-hour campaign, Up & Up ambassadors at universities across the nation appeal to their school’s student body to sell as many pre-sale tickets as possible, with the promise of co-producing the event should their school prove victorious. Purchasers’ credit cards are only processed if their school is among one of the four winners with the most ticket sales. If it is, Up & Up producers team up with the ambassadors to place headliners such as Loud Luxury at the campus for a one-of-a-kind festival experience that places the power in the hands of the students.

This year, Up & Up ambassadors at more than 40 colleges across the nation will compete. The competition will activate at 4:00 p.m. on September 14, with the four triumphant universities’ festivals scheduled to take place in October and November.

“College gave us our start and is where it all began for us as DJs. The Up & Up Festival is an opportunity to get back on those stages and play all those parties we grew up being a part of,” Loud Luxury said. Notably, the “Wasted” producers succeed Subtronics, who previously held headlining duties for Up & Up Festival.

Those interested in representing their school can apply to be an Up & Up ambassador on the festival series’ official website, where they can also find additional information about the competition-driven event.

Featured image: Matt Torres

The post Exclusive: Loud Luxury to headline Monster Energy’s Up & Up Festival appeared first on Dancing Astronaut.