Live coding with Overtone, LightTable, a DIY electronic drumkit and the countdown to the Lambda Sonic Algorave
2014 10 10 : It has now been six months or so, that I started to work on a unification off many ideas I’ve been working with the last 10 years. I used to program a lot in Symbolic Composer. I started using this wonderful tool in 2002. It is a musical language based on Common Lisp. It has a couple of limitations that prevented me from progressing to a next level.
1. It’s not suitable for live coding.
2. It is really expensive and I don’t have any money, so no upgrade for me. I still use it on a ancient laptop. The monitor has been separated from it’s body. Feels like coding on a victim of an extremist religion sect.
3. It’s not open source. For me, sharing and Open Source is the future.
4. It doesn’t have a vivid user-group so it seems that almost nobody is using it or doesn’t share any information.
So after looking for a substitute I found Overtone, that uses a LISP as well : Clojure. It has some elements that resemble Symbolic Composer, but the syntax is really different. But it has a lot of features that I really love. Open Source, user community, and Supercollider.
I have two weeks to make this happen and use the result at the Lamba Sonic Algorave.
I was a lot easier though to make interesting melody’s and harmonic structures in Symbolic Composer. In the next two weeks I’m going to post a lot of questions on the Overtone forum to tweak all things that bother me and are difficult to resolve, in the hope to get as close as I can get to the instrument that I have in mind.
Also, I would like to use my self-made electronic drumkit as an addition to my programmed improvisation partner, Overtone.
As a human graphic improvisation partner, Kasper Jordaens teamed up with me to form Halic, a live-coding interactive duo.
He’s a great programmer and a civil engineer and architect. The graphics he generates in Quil have a immediate effect on the sounds and sequences I program. I find it a great support to have found such a nice partner in crime.
My drumkit is in full effect and has been used on a dozen of my performances so far.
I stopped using my laptop and Ableton for the sound-generation and effects. This set-up had too much latency and was not error-proof on stage.
So I started using a analog bassdrum machine of Jomox, and the Nord Drum 2, that feels like a good emulation of a Simmons SDS 8. For the snaredrum, I’m going to use the AXO modular synth by Johannes Taeleman.
It can be triggerd directly with a fantastic sensitive response unprecedented by any drumsynth I used so far. It just baffles me.
Can be played very successful with brushes as well.
Check this site if your interested in my progress, I’ll be posting every few days from now on with a update of my projects.
My new Anton Price album will feature my DIY homemade electronic drum-kit.
My kit is now fully operational and I’m satisfied how it is working so far.
I’m experimenting with Arduino boards for the trigger to midi conversion.
Also, my new music and performances will involve ‘ live coding ‘ combined with live played electronic drums.
The next few weeks I will be posting videos of my electronic drums in action.
Previews of my new tracks will be posted on Soundcloud.
The following musicians are the members of my Anton Price Band :
Peter Vandenberghe (Flat Earth Society, X-Legged-Sally) on synthesizers
Mirko Banovic (Arno) on Moog Pedal and electric bass
Thomas Jillings (An Expedition into the Mind of Sgt. Fuzzy ) on EWI (electronic sax)
The new Anton Price Release on vinyl can be expected on the end of September.
As an electronic duo I’m involved in a collaboration with Internal Sun, better known as Andrew Claes who is best known for his work with the Belgian jazz-funk band Brazzaville. Both of us are playing electronic instruments live and are complimenting our playing with some live looping.
I will be performing oldskool New Orleans music at the Sunday afternoon Roots Sessions at Café Vertigo on the 4 of May with my new acoustic band . Members are
Elko Blijweerdt (Wim Vandekeybus, Franco Saint de Bakker, Dead Man Ray, Front 242) on guitar
Bart Maris (Flat Earth Society) on trumpet
Filip Vandenbril (Antwerp Gipsy Ska Orchestra) on double bass
Friday the 23th, I’m playing drums with the Eric Morel Quartet @ Café Vertigo, Draakplaats 3, 2018 Antwerp.