“Lifeforms Foundation Evo” made by Pittsburgh Modular

modular
For March, Sylvia and I have selected a very powerful Modular Synthesizer, for this month’s “Review” and “Drawing”, on our crowd-funding page.

For details on this very capable, musical tool, visit its product page:
pittsburghmodular.com/news/2017/1/11/introducing-the-lifeforms-foundation-4-and-lifeforms-foundation-evo

For more information on this crowd-funding project, please visit our Patreon page:
www.patreon.com/infinity_band

To hear our album, “Perfectionately Yours” for free, visit our BandCamp page:
infinity4.bandcamp.com/releases

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Korg Volca FM: in-depth

A few days ago, we watched a video-review of the “Korg Volca FM” synthesizer by someone we didn’t know much about. He goes by the name of: “Cuckoo” and the review we watched was very good.

  • Sylvia and I have owned a Volca FM for a few months now. We purchased it because I told Sylvia it would provide us with a good source of (create-from-scratch) “bell” and “metallic” sounds. The Retail Price, at $160, is very reasonable for what this small box offers.

We’ve always enjoyed the thorough reviews by “SonicState” but “Cuckoo” brings a slightly more hands-on, and exploring, approach.

Here’s the link to the SonicState review of the Volca FM:
www.sonicstate.com/news/2016/04/22/sonic-lab-korg-volca-fm-dx-in-a-box/

Here’s the link to the review by Cuckoo:
www.youtube.com/watch?v=lFfdOq9rvLc

Here are 2 more Cuckoo reviews on the Volca FM. This first one explains “FM Synthesis” in general:
www.youtube.com/watch?v=WJrTk4cgFiQ

In this video, he lets us hear the Volca FM “Patches” that he created:
www.youtube.com/watch?v=s6D9jafo5_I

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The “ARP 2500”

Ever since Korg introduced their version of the 1970s “ARP Odyssey” synthesizer, many Musicians (Sylvia and I included) have been wondering when Korg would reveal their version of the “ARP 2600” synthesizer. They had former ARP Engineer, David Friend, give a Talk during the Odyssey’s unveiling and, I guess, Korg obtained special permission to manufacturer this new instrument. So I assumed they would move to the next plateau in the ARP lineup and build the “2600”.

Now that it’s been at least 24-months since the Odyssey’s release, we still have no “ARP 2600”.

The other day, I was thinking about this and then I thought:

  • Maybe Korg hasn’t released the “2600” because they don’t have any plans to release it. Instead, what if they knew from the beginning that they would re-introduce the world to one of ARP’s “popular” synths (the “Odyssey”) and then re-make the ARP “2500”? Because more and more Musicians and more and more manufacturers are embracing the world of “Modular” synths, it makes more sense for Korg to skip the 2600 and go right for the pot-of-gold… and the reason the “2500” hasn’t been released yet (if any of this is true) is because the ARP 2500 is a large, Modular synth, powerhouse and would probably take much longer to not only recreate all of its components but to also have each facet of that synthesizer faithfully reproduce the sonic textures of the original “2500”.

Just some thoughts.

Here’s the link to the “Korg ARP Odyssey”:
www.korg.com/us/products/synthesizers/arpodyssey/

Here’s the link to an “ARP 2600”:
www.vintagesynth.com/arp/arp.php

Here’s the link to an “ARP 2500” page:
www.vintagesynth.com/arp/2500.php

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Music-Gear Drawings

Ok. We did it. We just finished tearing down our “Patreon”, crowd-funding page, for our album, and created our new “Monthly Music-Gear Drawing”, crowd-funding page.

  • We’re asking for $5 contributions, in order to reach that month’s Goal. When it’s reached, we’ll purchase that piece of Music Gear, examine it, review it and then hold a Drawing of those who contributed and give it away.

For March, we’ve selected the “Korg Volca FM” synthesizer. Although we already own this $159 product, we thought we’d start off small and with something we’re already a bit familiar with.

Keep in mind that Sylvia and I, and our Band (“Infinity”), are currently unknown. This means “getting the word” out is an uphill job for us. So if you or someone you know is interested in Music Gear, and would like a chance to win one, please give them the following link.

More details can be found at the link below.

Here’s the link to our Music-Gear Drawing page:
https://www.patreon.com/infinity_band

Here’s the link to the Korg Volca FM page:
http://www.korg.com/us/products/dj/volca_fm/

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New Music Gear

Since Sylvia and I had to work today, but only for a half-day, we went to the local “Guitar Center” store when we left.

Almost 2-weeks ago, we came up with a new idea on:

  • how to do something we love — play music, create interesting electronic music sounds and teach,
  • “possibly” raise enough money to quit our job and work on the many projects we have on our list,
  • help those who “would like to have” or “need” some new Music Gear (but can’t afford it) to get it for almost nothing,
  • and more.

So far, the very few people we’ve described this to, including the Music Store Manager, have expressed positive Comments about it.

I don’t want to release any more information than that, until we’re closer to Launching this idea.

  • I’m a little hesitant to do this. Mostly because it involves a “change” and I have to rely on my “Reasoning” braincells, in order to be sure I do everything correctly. Sylvia does help me a lot, throughout the day but if I’m stressed, I don’t receive her communications correctly. Plus, any final decision Sylvia and I make on THIS side of the “Veil” have to come from “me”. Just as… any final decisions we make, regarding the OTHER side of the “Veil” have to come from “Sylvia”. We’ve talked about this, months ago, and both of us understand how this has to be this way right now.
  • I’m also walking carefully into this new project because it means putting Sylvia and my “Band”, as well as our personal image, on the line. Another idea behind doing this is to call attention to our album. We still need crowd-funding, in order to get some CDs manufactured and Distributed. If this new project doesn’t unfold properly, we may damage our image and any possible funding for that album.
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Bonus Track!

When Sylvia sent me the pieces for “Night Of A Thousand Years” (through the “Veil”), the largest section was its Orchestral foundation. She later guided me as to how this “Streamed” piece should be edited and used under the full version of this Song.

When Sylvia and I were assembling this album, we talked about including this “foundation” Track but decided against it. Because this is a “Concept” album, with an interwoven series of Songs and a flowing base of emotions, adding this particular Track, even at the end, would take-away from that experience. Instead, we decided to include it as a “Bonus” Track.

So we now have that “unedited”, “just as I received it from Sylvia” Track on our BandCamp page. Anyone who purchases our “Perfectionately Yours” album from BandCamp, will now recieve the album’s downloadable Poster and this Bonus Track as a “Thank You” for supporting our work.

Here’s the link:
infinity4.bandcamp.com/releases

 

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Album Update

Although Sylvia and I are doing our best to get “crowd-funding” started, this aspect of our music business seems to be stuck. We don’t like doing “Social Media” and with possibly “hundreds” or “thousands” of new songs being made available every day, it’s no wonder our band’s tiny island is still unknown.

On our Patreon page, there’s also a video of me explaining why we need this money.

Here’s the link to our Patreon, crowd-funding page:
www.patreon.com/infinity_band

While we’re waiting for funding, for CD manufacturing, Sylvia and I decided to make this album available through “BandCamp”. So “Perfectionately Yours” can now be purchased… AND anyone can listen to all the Songs for free from that same site. These are the full songs. Just as Sylvia wrote them.

When this album is purchased, a Bonus file will be instantly available. It’s the “PDF” version of the “Perfectionately Yours” Poster. This 18 x 24-inch creation contains all the Lyrics for all the Songs. It also contains some background information on some of the Songs as well as a list of the Music Gear we used.

Be sure to scroll down, below the Song List, in order to read the background of how this album was created. Remember, this is a “Concept” album. All of the songs, together, tell a complete story. It’s “our” story… the story of how Sylvia and I are now working “across the Veil”. The songs take the Listener from the beginning of Sylvia and my “physical” (and temporary) separation. The energy and style of each song re-creates those emotions I felt just after our 3-weeks in hospice was over and brings you through to the present day. So the beginning of this album is very “chaotic”… very “stressful” and “confusing”. The songs then move through “anger” and on to “hopefullness”.

Here’s the link to our BandCamp page:
https://infinity4.bandcamp.com/releases

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Album Update & Crowd Funding

On July 1, 2016, Sylvia and I finally finished our album: “Perfectionately Yours”. It took us over 24-monhts to do this, while Sylvia and I worked “through the Veil”. It’s almost 70-minutes in length. It’s a “Concept Album”. It’s our story, our Life, in a general sense from Sylvia’s point of “crossing-over” to now. Most of the Songs can apply to anyone’s loss of their Loved One.

This album is raw, rough and, at times, a bit “out there”. It takes the Listener from the Chaos I found myself in… through Disorientation… Anger, Sadness, re-finding myself… to re-connecting again to Sylvia.

Right now, we need funding, in order to get the CDs manufactured, the Posters printed, basically, to get this album Distributed.

On September 25, 2016, we Launched our crowd-funding campaign. It’s on crowd-funding site: “Patreon”. Here’s the link:
www.patreon.com/infinity_band

If you’d like to receive this album for a very low price, or would like to own 1 of our very specially-made, layered, logo-bearing, Lavender Candles, or would like to have our logo on a Drumhead, to hang on your wall, then please visit our Patreon page above for more details on this next phase.

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Album Update (5/3/2016)

Today, Sylvia and I worked on our “Time Machine” song again. We focused on the Cyber Diva (female) Vocal part. It took a bit to get it adjusted but even with that, “her” timing was “off” here-and-there. (I entered her note-rhythm from memory and it was not completely correct. So “her” notes weren’t matching the timing of “my” notes, when I inserted them into GarageBand.) I was going to adjust it, yet again, when Sylvia suggested I take a mental step back and really listen to what this song and those 2 voices (hers and mine) represent, which is “working” and “singing” through the “Veil”.

As I listened in this way, Sylvia explained that this mismatch of Vocal Timings symbolizes the distortion of “sight” and “sound” through the “Veil”.

  • It works. It does work. For some reason, I had forgotten this “through the “Veil” aspect, and kept trying to polish this song, so it would sound “professional’… but that’s not what this song is about.

When we finished adding the software Vocal part, I moved GarageBand’s Playhead to the beginning and listened to the entire song. As I did, I just started crying. At that moment, I knew this song was now finished because I coul (I’m crying now)

  • …I then knew this song was finished because I couldn’t stop crying. I’m not sure “why” though… Maybe because it was a lot of work, pulling energies through from the other side of the “Veil”… Maybe because it’s a beautiful song… Maybe it’s because it’s feedback that Sylvia and I really did work together across the vast distance of “No-Time”, here in the “Now”.
  • These are not “my” songs. I don’t write songs like this. Mine are very simple structures of music. These are interwoven sonic textures with a self-empowering message. So I know My Sylvia wrote these songs. I’m just proud to be her “Assembler”.

Remember, “Sylvia” wrote this song and, so far, all of the songs on this album. I “Stream” them from “her” to “me” and then assemble them. I really thought our Orchestra work “N.O.A.T.Y.” was going to be the most complicated and longest-to-assemble song on this album but, so far, this “honor” goes to “Time Machine”.

  • Figuring out where Sylvia’s puzzle pieces were supposed to go and which sounds (instruments) she wanted me to use, as well as deciphering the “Tempos” and “Rhythms” was like assembling a model many years ago… Whether I was building a “ship”, “airplane” or the Star Wars Millennium Falcon, there was usually a point where the smaller pieces would create part of a large piece but then you had to snap that section into 2 other pieces. This meant moving part of it in 1 direction while snapping another part in a different direction while sliding something else under another piece. (At least that’s what it seemed like for me.) “Time Machine” felt like that at times.
  • I would classify “Time Machine” as “Progressive Rock”. It’s a “Pop-Rock” song that’s heavy on drums and synthesizer but has lots of sonic changes as well as 2 different Tempos and at least 3 different Rhythms.
  • I saw the details of 1 of the Time Machine files and it shows that it was created on October 6, 2015. This is about when Sylvia asked me to stop working on “Time Machine” and switch-over to working on “Calling All Humans”. (Which is free and can be downloaded by anyone. See below)

I just now exported this new song and added it to our iTunes Playlist for this album. It now shows that we have 6-Tracks but this includes a “Pre-album” Track that’s 1-minute, 46-seconds in length. It was supposed to only go at the beginning of the video for this album but, as I listened to it just now, Sylvia suggested that we also place it at the beginning of this album. So it’s a Track of 1 sound effect, in the background, with me and Sylvia talking over it. Of course, “Sylvia’s” voice is represented by the “Cyber Diva” software from Yamaha.

  • This software is not perfect and I can’t get “her” voice to come close to Sylvia’s but it’s the best Vocal Software (sing almost any word) on the market today. Sylvia and I would not be able to create this album without it.

“Time Machine” is 5-minutes, 4-seconds in length. So now we have 5 songs finished and they take up about 33-minutes on this album. I don’t know how many more songs Sylvia has in mind for this project. I do have notes for at least 3 more… maybe even 6 more, total.

  • I just checked and there’s an extra song in iTunes. I had forgotten that Sylvia had me save the initial “Stream” for the “N.O.A.T.Y.” song as a type of “Bonus” Track. So that Track alone is 7-minutes, 35-seconds in length.
  • So there are really 4 “different” songs… plus the “Stream” of the Orchestra Strings (for
  • “N.O.A.T.Y.”)… plus a Track of me and “Sylvia” talking.
  • Note: “N.O.A.T.Y.” is not the actual name of that song. These are the 1st letters of its name. Sylvia has asked me to not release some song names of the album’s title until the album is released… partially because these are either unique words (that we created) or a unique combination of words… and partially because of the energies surrounding this album and the songs within it. Sylvia said it was ok to mention “Time Machine” because it’s a Society-known “phrase” and “idea” and is not unique.
  • We currently refer to this album’s title as “P.Y.”

(Several hours later…)

  • After supper tonight, I thought to myself: “Time Machine is finished” and it hit me… That’s almost “symbolic”… “My Time Machine is finished”… “My way back to My Sylvia is now complete”.

Here’s the link to our free “Calling All Humans” song:
http://infinity.band/song.html

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Album Update

Sylvia and I worked on our latest song today. We spent several hours on it and ran into a couple of glitches with Apple’s GarageBand program. At one point, it changed 1 of our “audio” Regions (recorded Violin notes from our Korg Krome) into a “MIDI” Region (digital notes), which it cannot normally accomplish. We could see the converted Region and the notes but GarageBand wouldn’t play them. (I tried to play them only because I was curious as to what that program did.)

It even added frequency modulation (a “wobble”) to the Bassoon part I recorded a few days ago.

  • This is why you must not only back-up your computer work but you must also keep “iterations” / “versions”. Each Time you find yourself about to make a major change in your song, the book you’re writing, a movie, a digital image… anything that’s important to you, it’s a very good idea to train yourself to stop and save that file under a different name. Sylvia and I simply add a number to the end of the filename and just change that with each Save.
  • For the Bassoon’s “wobble”, I simply opened a previous version, Copied the Bassoon part and Pasted it into the current file.

Since we have the latest version of GarageBand, I have a feeling the problem is in our 2009 Mac Mini computer… I’m thinking it’s just not 100-percent compatible with Apple’s latest Operating System — Mac OS X 10.11, “El Capitan”.

I did a quick, troubleshooting search on the Internet but found nothing similar.

The song itself is almost finished. Besides doing the final Mix, I have to reinforce my recorded Vocals. I really don’t want to re-record them. So I’m hoping I can simply bring-up the volume in the syllables that sound faint. I also need to search through the sounds in my electronic drums, in order to find a better Cymbal sound for 1 spot. The sound I used, from the Krome, is a typical, drumset Cymbal “crash” but the sound I’m hearing in my head is a Symphonic Cymbal “crash and choke” or, even better, a Cymbal being scraped with another Cymbal or a metal stick. (I only searched within the Krome today but I think there’s a Cymbal “scape” sound in GarageBand.)

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