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Is it OK if I perform with my modular live?
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Author Is it OK if I perform with my modular live?
Soy Sos
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PostPosted: Tue Feb 08, 2011 10:06 am    Post subject: Reply with quote Add User to Ignore List

CursedFrogurt wrote:
Construct a giant steampunk synthesizer with huge weighted levers and blinking lights. The synth is completely empty, but for a cubby on the backside that holds your laptop. Dance around it pulling random levers and twisting victorian bathtub knobs. Maybe put a cappuccino machine in there and let some steam out every now and then.

Best laptop performance EVAR!


Love that!

I've performed a zillion shows with "traditional" guitar/bass/drum/key/vocalist bands. Also a billion gigs as "DJ". About 20 with the modular. I'm developing a project that's done 5 shows that features a Puerto-Rican vocalist and 2 percussionists. I have a bunch of custom elements created on my modular , loaded into clips in Ableton and manipulated live with a MIDI controller. I think it's really cool and fun and impossible without a laptop. I'd like to do something like it no safety net style someday but the technology affords variety and reliability that I think is enjoyable for the viewer/listener.

My 3 cents.

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Carci
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PostPosted: Tue Feb 08, 2011 10:56 am    Post subject: Reply with quote Add User to Ignore List

My problem with laptop performers is that I can never be sure if they're actually making music or watching pr0n.



With the modular synthesizer, there's no doubt...
... It's music AND pr0n.

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Tobor
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PostPosted: Tue Feb 08, 2011 11:11 am    Post subject: Reply with quote Add User to Ignore List

I take my Buchla often live.
my last setup was :

Buchla 200e
Nagra IVS
Jomox T-Resonator

I prepare at home a tape with gleetchlab so I can concentrate only with the Buchla and the overall mix. after all that is the classic way

and yes, you should do whatever you like.
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Nuuj
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PostPosted: Tue Feb 08, 2011 11:39 am    Post subject: Reply with quote Add User to Ignore List

I've always thought that laptop players should project their desktop so that the people who care could watch what they are doing.
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vqlk: "...so seriously - this a forum dedicated to discussing each other's really lame and un-extreme modular synths??!"
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Chuck E. Jesus
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PostPosted: Tue Feb 08, 2011 11:44 am    Post subject: Reply with quote Add User to Ignore List

Carci wrote:
My problem with laptop performers is that I can never be sure if they're actually making music or watching pr0n.

.


gives new meaning to "musical masturbation"...
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ersatzplanet
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PostPosted: Tue Feb 08, 2011 12:03 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote Add User to Ignore List

Nuuj wrote:
I've always thought that laptop players should project their desktop so that the people who care could watch what they are doing.


You can alway save you coin for one of these from Music Computing:



Music Computing makes some pretty sweet keyboard controllers with built in laptop docks - adds the controllers and makes the laptop more a part of your instrument.
You can also take the guts from a Monome or Akai Abelton controller and make the buttons wall sized. then you have a very physical performance controller.

-James

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dogoftears
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PostPosted: Tue Feb 08, 2011 7:23 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote Add User to Ignore List

actually if you are playing dance music and you have a modular on stage people will automatically like it 90% more, even if you dont use the thing. if you do dare to tweek out on it, people go apeshit. modular is a great visual performance instrument. it does help to come to the gig pre-patched, as patching in the dark with loud music playing can be... difficult. and next to impossible to calculate any thing super-modulated and exact.

laptops... i hate using them... just ordered an octatrack (its in the mail). but there is no doubt that a laptop running ableotn can be a very dynamic performance tool.
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orangecookie
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PostPosted: Tue Feb 21, 2012 10:49 am    Post subject: Reply with quote Add User to Ignore List

As many other people have said, yes, perform live!

The issue about being visually entertaining is an interesting one. For example, depending on the structure of the hall or church, if you attend a pipe organ concert you're not going to see the organist so the expectation of seeing the performer "doing things" is not there.

Now that I incorporate video in my sets (and also being a VJ), a lot of performance anxiety is gone because I don't have the pressure of having to be interesting to look at. I've performed with a variety of instruments (laptop, harp, pile of pedals, guitar, keyboards) and there's also the issue of feeling that I have to do something - that my hands should always be in motion. If I get a patch, a sequence, or a loop going and the sound/music is in a slowly-evolving trajectory, I fight the tendency to tweak things, just to appear that I'm doing something (I know, lame). Not being on center stage has helped with that.

As a audience member, I like seeing what people are doing, but sometimes I also prefer to just listen and keep my eyes closed. When I'm at a show and the sound source is a laptop (or several), there usually isn't a reason to have the performer sit at the front (placement of speakers/PA is more important).

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AntManBee
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PostPosted: Tue Feb 21, 2012 11:03 am    Post subject: Reply with quote Add User to Ignore List

andrewF wrote:
as soon as I see a laptop on stage, i think 'lame'

What about Kraftwerk?!

I used to use backing tapes onstage in the early 1980s (it's tough being a one-man-band) and it pissed a lot of people off, but so did Human League & Depeche Mode (although DM kept their 8 track hidden backstage) and it didn't do them any harm.

Perceptions will always differ but if you're using a tool creatively in a live performance I can't see that it matters if it's an analogue modular or a laptop - you just need to decide what will work best for you in the given situation.
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Hainbach
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PostPosted: Tue Feb 21, 2012 1:12 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote Add User to Ignore List

I have played laptop-only gigs, toured with 350 kilos of vintage keyboards and amps and performed with two mics and kitchen appliances. It always depends on what you need to make a good show and feel fine on stage.

For my next live shows I'll be on stage with the modular, a laptop, two guitarists and a bassist, as well as a HSS3i and a beamer. In order to easily play together with the other guys, I have recorded modular loops in my laptop and split the modular in a live patching and sound processing side. The loops run to the processing side and I can patch live to them. This way we can both recreate the tunes we wrote and jam freely. Plus I will also synthesize visuals. Can't wait to play, as we are still in rehearsals.

I'd say just do what you like, enjoy it, and always have a failsafe, both technically and creativly.

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Eis-T
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PostPosted: Tue Feb 21, 2012 2:51 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote Add User to Ignore List

this is what happens when you use samples instead of the real thing:

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whitewulfe
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PostPosted: Tue Feb 21, 2012 6:30 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote Add User to Ignore List

AntManBee wrote:
andrewF wrote:
as soon as I see a laptop on stage, i think 'lame'

What about Kraftwerk?!

I used to use backing tapes onstage in the early 1980s (it's tough being a one-man-band) and it pissed a lot of people off, but so did Human League & Depeche Mode (although DM kept their 8 track hidden backstage) and it didn't do them any harm.

Perceptions will always differ but if you're using a tool creatively in a live performance I can't see that it matters if it's an analogue modular or a laptop - you just need to decide what will work best for you in the given situation.


VNV Nation is another, and they throw one hell of a good show, and they aren't afraid to show the couple of Macbooks on the stage...
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KindredSpirit
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PostPosted: Fri Feb 24, 2012 12:09 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote Add User to Ignore List

Use everything. I still think it is magical seeing a modular on stage especially one that is lit well to go with the music. OK I could go with the obvious Emerson, Tangerine Dream, Roger Powell etc.

Funniest thing is (apart from ELP themselves) the biggest cheer from the crowd over the weekend at High Voltage Festival happened when the modular Moog was wheeled on stage and uncovered. Not bad for a piece of equipment 50 years old!
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gwaidan
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PostPosted: Sun Feb 26, 2012 7:56 am    Post subject: Reply with quote Add User to Ignore List

AntManBee wrote:
andrewF wrote:
as soon as I see a laptop on stage, i think 'lame'

What about Kraftwerk?!

I used to use backing tapes onstage in the early 1980s (it's tough being a one-man-band) and it pissed a lot of people off, but so did Human League & Depeche Mode (although DM kept their 8 track hidden backstage) and it didn't do them any harm.

Perceptions will always differ but if you're using a tool creatively in a live performance I can't see that it matters if it's an analogue modular or a laptop - you just need to decide what will work best for you in the given situation.


The key is performance-Kraftwerk have the videos and lightshow (and robots), DM had Dave Gahan, HL had Phil and the girls and even Howard Jones had his mime(!)-problem is when the sole visual focus is a guy or guys who could be reading emails for all the audience is aware.

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lordofthebored wrote:
Any news on this yet? I just sold all my other modules of this type so I could replace it with this different implementation of the same thing!
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BananaPlug
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PostPosted: Sun Feb 26, 2012 9:02 am    Post subject: Reply with quote Add User to Ignore List

AntManBee wrote:
andrewF wrote:
as soon as I see a laptop on stage, i think 'lame'

What about Kraftwerk?!

Kraftwerk used to bring gear. When Computerworld was the current disk their live act looked like the album cover. A good bit of that chunky sixties era NASA style console was filler but they were clearly playing stuff even if it was just riding filter over canned sequences. In more recent performance videos I don't get the sense that one night's show would be any different than another. Their presence seem superfluous. I'm curious to hear what the MOMA shows are like.
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darenager
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PostPosted: Sun Feb 26, 2012 12:05 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote Add User to Ignore List

I think a laptop gig is fine if there is a performance aspect, like using controllers and some kind of visuals, but if its just some dude switching scenes in abletron with a mouse/trackpad then thats faking it IMHO and more akin to a DJ set, only not as interesting or flexible.

I'm fairly sure though that there are cutting edge laptop performers out there doing stuff in realtime and having a blast in the process.

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