Saturday, 21 May 2016

Superbooth Gig Video

Thanks to Synthtopia for taking the time to document our trio's concert at Superbooth!

Hilary Jeffery has dates in France this weekend. Check his site for more live engagements.

Wolfgang Seidel has just published a book about Krautrock.

Everything you ever wanted to know about this strange German music but were afraid to ask, written by a man who was there.

Sunday, 1 May 2016

May 7: Wolfgang Seidel + Navs Live, G2 Patch

Fresh from our Superbooth set, I’m looking forward to another chance to improvise with Wolfgang Seidel. We are playing at Spektrum in Berlin, Neukölln next Saturday, May 7. Doors open at 19:00 and we must start by 20:00 so don’t be late!

Also on the bill at Richard Scott’s Sound Anatomy night will be the pipe-smoking professor himself in duet with trumpet-player extraordinaire Axel Dörner. They will launch their new release on the Sound Anatomy label.

Spektrum is at Bürknerstr. 12 in 12047 Berlin Neukölln. The Facebook Event is here.

Playing live electronics can be a lot of fun, especially given a nice sound system and large room. The one bane for the performer can be the amount of equipment he or she needs and, conversely, the amount of space offered by the venue. A case or two of modules, a small mixer and a couple of effects often have to be unpacked, set-up and dismantled on a small table in a short amount of time.

Frank Bretschneider’s minimal kit list for his Superbooth performance was inspiring: just an Elektron Octatrack and an external delay. Frank told me the effects box was wired as an auxiliary loop within the Octatrack. I’m not familiar with the architecture of the Elektron but saw a possible parallel with the Clavia Nord Modular G2 system.

Above is the FX framework that I’ll be using at the Spektrum gig. It means I don’t have to bring an external mixer and can control levels directly from the G2. A multiple of outputs 1+2 is sent to an external effects unit via physical outputs 3+4 and returned via Ins 3+4. I’ve set the modulation wheel to act as the FX send pot and dedicated one knob page to the virtual mixer. With a few tweaks it could easily be modified for ‘voltage controlled’ automation.

It’s not perfect as there is a momentary muting of the output when switching between patches. But I felt it was more important to have control over the main as well as dry/wet levels and ratios. This is especially important when, for example, using my gigging delay, the EHX SMMH, as a looper. Patching the delay physically between the synth and the venue’s PA/ mixer would not be as flexible.

There seems to be a drop in levels between the VA + FX sections on the G2, irrespective of any padding. To avoid overdriving the delay pedal I have additionally padded the input to the FX section by -6dB. You can switch in a 6dB boost or add some overdrive to make up the gain should you need it. Be careful of avalanches if you use the FX-FB feedback loop.

You can download the G2 patch here. Let me know how you get on. Hope to see you at the gig!