Wednesday, April 25, 2012

#M4MLIVE - April 24th 2012 - Not epic but still good - Muzik 4 Machines

Monday, April 02, 2012


Muzik 4 machines is a live electronic music project from Quebec, Canada. Performing live with hardware synthesizers, using no pre-recorded sound or backing tracks, he creates a plethora of sounds ranging from electro to drum and bass, always with the same minimalist modus operandi; Distorted analog and punchy sampled drums, a few monophonic synths a couple of samplers, lots of effects and constant sonic mangling and tweaking.

It all began in 1991 with a Portastudio, a guitar and a TR-707 drum machine; early compositions were a mix between early house and grunge music, mixing the 4 on the floor rhythm with loud fuzz guitar. As the technology evolved, so did the Project; recruiting performers and signers and buying, finding or building new gadgets and sound mangling devices. When computer became powerful enough to generate and process sound, a new page of M4M history started.

The Music also evolved from simple riffs over a steady beat to more complex and mysterious texture in some works and at the same time exploded into Rave party music in others. They got some good charts apparition online and even sold Cd's worldwide on the then underground website that since closed.

Back to minimal electro house, Muzik 4 Machines is now producing new material, performing it live, and distributing it via bit torrent, youtube and a multitude of online music stores from around the world (iTunes, Amazon)

Gear Used:

-AKAI APC40: Ableton live control
-Ableton Live on MacBook Pro 1.1: Sequencing and Mixing
-MOTU Traveler+ADA8000: Mixer
-Korg ESX1: Drums
-Yamaha TX81z: Reverby/Pumpy Sawtooth Bass (chain:TX81z-Boss V-Wha-Akai MFC42-DBX266 ch2 (Compression/distortion)-Alesis Nanoverb-DBX266 ch1 (pump)--Mixer)
-Roland MKS50: Hoover/Saw/Lead/Pumpy Synth (Chain MKS50-DBX266-Boss SL20-Zoom RFX2200-Mixer)
-Clavia Nord Micro Modular: Synth, bass, arpegios, pads, chords
-Electro Harmonix V256: Vocoder and talkbox (with MXR Dist+ and danelectro Rocky Road on the synth signal line)
-Korg Kaoss pad 2: Tempo Delay
-Korg Kaoss Pad 3: Loops, Looper(snare rolls), Grainshifter
-Korg Kaossilator: Noise Sweeps (path: K01-Mini KP(Delay))
-Korg ER1: Distorted Beatbox( Chain: left out-ProCo Turbo Rat-V Wha-compressor-DD5)
-Yamaha DX200: Fm E-piano, pads, 303-esque sequences, etc (Chain: Left Out-Boss DD5 delay-Mixer)
-MOTU MIDI Mixer 7s: Kaossilator and iKaossilator Submix
-MOTU Midi Time Piece 2: Clock and MIDI routing

International Booking Agent: Luc De Bouvries 514-983-4457 S.L. Feldman & Associates

Muzik 4 Machines est un projet Electro-Tech basé a Québec, Canada offrant des performance totalement live avec du matériel de séquence et de synthèse, laissant de coté les ordinateurs.  Créant une variété de sons allant du pur electro minimaliste jusqu'au drum and bass, toujours avec le même modus operandi; Des lignes de synthés analogique distortionnées flottant au dessus d'échantillons de drums punchy, quelques sons monophoniques, plusieurs effets et une manipulation et un triturage constant. 

Tout a commencé en 1991 avec un Portastudio, une guitare électrique et une boite a rhythme TR-707;  Les premières compositions étaient un mélange entre les débuts du house et le populaire grunge, alliant le "4 on the floor" avec de lourdes guitares fuzzées.  À fur et a mesure de l'évolution technologique, le projet évolua aussi;  recrutant divers performers et chanteurs, trouvant ou modifiant divers gadgets électroniques, adaptant ses méthodes.  Quand les ordinateurs atteignirent enfin une puissance suffisante à la production musicale, une nouvelle page de l'histoire de M4M débuta. 

La Musique évolua elle aussi; De riffs basiques sur des rythmes simples vers des textures mystérieuses et complexes accompagnées de rythmes irréguliers et intriguant dans certaines compositions, mais en même temps explosant vers la scène rave dans d'autres.  Le projet obtint divers succès dans les palmarès en ligne et vendit plusieurs CD un peu partout a travers le monde grâce au site original, site depuis fermé. 

Au fil des années, différents styles furent visités au gré des changements de personnel (House, Techno, DnB, même du Rock/Pop, et certains sons indescriptibles du coté électro-acoustique).  Des invités incluant Luke, MisterW(Jubox), YUL and DP participèrent a différents projets studio et performances en spectacle. 

De retour en formule solo depuis 2007, Muzik 4 Machines compose toujours du matériel original entremêlé de remixes et de reprises, le performe live et le distribue via bit torrent, youtube, itunes et maintenant UStream pour une interaction encore plus directe avec les fans. 

some tech notes

the drums track has a mega rack on it

the first "device" is a rack with 20 slots, each maped to a note, with the mute of those slots maped to my APC

then there is a drum rack that sends the MIDI to different notes (this is just so i have names in my editors instead oc notes) in this drum rack there is the "input subrack" which is a 4 slot rack with each an external fx using inly the return for kick, snare, everything else from the esx (hats, crashes, ets) and the ER1 (those 4 have their levels mapped to the main rack macros)

on the ER1 chain there is a subrack containing livecut with a dry wet mapped to macro 1 of the main rack

i also built myself a "send" rack to allow me to send only the ER1 to my main send fx

there is also a gate on the (rest of drums) input as the ESX tubes are noisy as hell

tx, mks, dx, nord and vocoder all have a similar rack with external instrument, lo/hi cut and a max4live device to allow macro to send CC to the said external instrument (porta, level, mod, etc, depneding on what the synth understands)

the tx and mks have gates as they are noisy beasts

then there is the "pumper", just basic live compressor fed by a dedicated sidechain track, with the threshold mapped to a macro in the main rack so i can "fade" from no pumping to max pumping delicately (it's also maped to a button on the APC(the record enable buttons) for fast(and especially) simutaneous switching)

the 2 "sampler" tracks have each a livecut rack (like the drums, with a dry slot and a crossfading chain selection between dry and livecut), a pumper rack and an EQ3 with hi and lo cut with sweepable frequency

the kaossilator track pretty much the same type of rack as the instruments with another custom M4L device to control the MIDI Mixer 7 submixer that receives the kaossilator, ipod and other "not essential to be on a dedicated rack" things

every midi track has a special M4L device that cuts the MIDI and at the same time sends a note off, because muting(on/off) the track cuts the sound and thus any sustain tail, so not usable, and if i just cut the midi flow without sending a note off there might be hanging notes

i use the apc 50/50 as a remote and a force mapped midi controller

the faders and grid are mobile but the track stop,solo, rec and on butons are force mapped

track stops are main drum on/off

1- kick
2- snare 1
3- snare 2
4- claps
5- closed hat 1
6- open hat 1
7- perc
8- open/closed noise hats

the on buttons on every track but the drum controls the special midi mute devices, on the drums it's a chain selector on the mutes rack that effectively mutes all the esx but the crash but let the ER1 pass thru

the solo buttons are on/off for the ER1 sounds

the record enable buttons control the pumper on every track but the drum

i forced mapped the master to the kp3 return and the cross fader to the kaossilator track

i forced mapped the record button to select the kaossilator track to access individual MM7s input via macros (and also fx sends via a special internal send rack+utilities tracks like in the drum/er1 rack)

the 3 sends banks are mobile but i forced mapped the pan ones to the NORD send, tho it might disappear as i dont really use the nord as an fx as i thought i'd do

i also inversed the start and stop cause they have them reversed

the cue knob is force mapped to the master but i never ever touch it, it's set to -6 and stas there, but its probably usefull to have access to the master without mousing in case something happens and i need to shut it down

tap tempo is selected scene start, and the nudges are next/previous for those times when you forgot to move around with the redbox and used the mouse

the returns are regular returns except the last 3 they are special bus for the FOH 1 is the kick alone, 1 the bass alone and the other is a stereo mix minus kick and bass (it's a work in progress tho, i might opt for stereo drums, mono kick, mono bass and stereo mix without drums and bass, i think that will depend on the venue (i also have a stereo full mix out on the master for recording/my earphones

for now the bass and kick are pre but it might go post

that's about it, i'm pretty sure it's impossible to understand as i explain pretty badly