Alesis Micron Sound Samples

Alesis Micron

Sorry for the lack of updates in the last couple of months, our server got the Avian Flu. It got better, though. I got to sample an Alesis Micron a few weeks ago. The Micron is an 8 polyphony synthesizer which uses the ION analog-modeling sound engine. It has a nice lofi sound. The presets are a combination of Korg MS2000 style strings and techno drum arpeggiations. Nice little synth for the price, but, would prefer more knobs.

Here are a couple of sample packs which can also be found on the sound samples page. The first sample pack consists of edited drum hits from drum loops on the Micron. The second is a mix of dirty electronic growls.

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Buchla 200e Modular, Moog Synthesizer Demo

Buchla 200e Modular Synth

The 200e Modular Synth.

On this week’s podcast from Science Friday, Ira Flatow hosted a segment about Remembering Bob Moog. Check out the article or listen to the mp3 download. Some of the highlights are discussed below. The guest on the show was Lawrence Fritts, who is the director of the Electronic Music Studios at The University of Iowa.

He pointed out that there was actually simultaneous development of the first voltage controlled modular synthesizer at the same time as Bob Moog was working on the Moog Modular. On the other side of America, Don Buchla was busy with his own modular synth creation. Buchla and Moog had agreed to share credit for the development of the modular synth. A quick peak of Buchla’s site, I found this gem, the 200e Electric Music Box.

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We Will Miss You, Bob Moog

Bob Moog EurekaBob Moog, known as the “father of the synthesizer,” passed away at the age of 71 at his home in Asheville, N.C. yesterday evening. Moog was diagnosed with brain cancer this April and was undergoing radiation treatment and chemotherapy. News spread in late July about his battle with cancer.

You would be hard pressed to find an electronic musician who didn’t admire Bob Moog or respect everything he did not only for the electronic music community, but, music in general. Moog synthesizers have been used by very big artists including, but not limited to: The Beatles, Pink Floyd, The Beach Boys, Depeche Mode, Trent Reznor, Stevie Wonder, Herbie Hancock, Phil Collins, Frank Zappa etc.

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Aesop Rock – Fast Cars, Danger, Fire and Knives Review

Aesop Rock - Fast Cars, Danger, Fire and Knives

Score: 8.0

Add Blue Distortion to the list of “journalists critiquing his first eight bars.” The Fast Cars, Danger, Fire and Knives EP is Aesop Rock’s latest addition to the independent label Definitive Jux’s ever growing collection of mind expanding, eclectic hip hop. We can continue to hear Aesop progress into something new and fresh, following closely to the electronic and obscure sound of Bazooka Tooth. While there are only 7 songs on the EP, it includes an 88-page book highlighting all of Aesop Rock’s lyrics from Float to Fast Cars. The phrase “Now it takes a dancing bear jumping through flaming hoops to even make em buy the god-forsaken single!” from the Daylight EP comes to mind.

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Beastie Boys – To The Five Boroughs Review

Beastie Boys - To The 5 Boroughs
Rating: 9.0

It’s been over 6 long years since the Beastie Boys have graced our cd players and turntables with a new album. It was well worth the wait. What is a review of the Beastie Boys doing on a website about experimental electronic art? Well, in my opinion, Beastie Boys is one of the most experimental groups that I have come across as an avid music listener. Not in a sense of how many snares can you fit into a single bar without it sounding like white noise, but in their mastery of a very diverse group of genres. They can’t be classified; they are the Beastie Boys.
To the 5 Boroughs is somewhat different from every previous release of their’s to date, but they still manage to come with the signature Beastie sound, minus the obvious (vocals). This album is reminiscent of Paul’s Boutique feel and similar to the futuristic, electronic hip hop joints on Hello Nasty. Basically, it’s a good mix of their older and newer hip hop. There is no chilled, jam songs like the album of In Sound From Way Out which was somewhat disappointing.

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I could go through the whole album, but I will highlight a few of the gems. The album starts out with the popular radio track “Check it Out”, which has a great, old school style breaks over the infamous brass stabs. When I dropped it in the car stereo, I also found that the sub bass is deep and super heavy because “nothing sounds quite like an 808.” That brought a smile to my face and I never should have doubted these geezers. “Rhyme the Rhyme Well”, has my favorite beat on the album, and the song is a bit dark which is somewhat new to the Beastie Boys. They also drop plenty of fresh lines such as “I’m not even asking, yo what’s crackin’ / serving mc’s on a platter like a baked alaskan.”

“Oh Word?” and “The Brouhaha” are just plain bangers that could get any party started. Both start out with infectious, simple electronic melodies and progress into some nice body moving business. I can barely call any of the songs fillers, they seem to blend nicely together. The crystal clear production on this album is also amazing. To the 5 Boroughs won’t let down the fans of the goofy, bizarre lyrics that the Beastie Boys are well known for. For example, “I got more rhymes than Carl Sagan’s got turtlenecks” and “I got a baddazler so my outfit’s tight.”

Here is a little criticism. As mentioned before, there was not a great mix of genres in this record; they stuck through the hip hop tempos the entire album. While this isn’t a huge problem, it was strange to see them focus on one genre and leave it at that. Some of the political stances that they take make them sound a bit whiny, regardless of if you hang to the left or right. The songs with political views still have amazing beats and rhymes.

I can’t see any real Beastie Boys fan, who has grown up with them for years, not liking this album. Except for the ones that only dug their hardcore like Aglio E Olio and think everything since then is a sell out record. Listening to this album makes me want to put on a walkman and go skateboarding (or fail miserably at trying), like in the old, nostalgic days of Check Your Head and Ill Communication. I knew I would like this album before even listening to the first track, so it’s quite hard to give it a bad review. I have one question. How many crews can fit kugel or Ron Popeil into their rhyme scheme? Not many. These guys could make an entire record out of kitchen appliance sound effects and it still would be amazingly funky.