“For our 80th episode, we demo the Mixtape Alpha and Moldover Four Track, two tiny cassette-shaped synthesizers.
‘The Mixtape Alpha has a stylophone style input for continuous tone generation, and six buttons for discrete notes. With four voices, four effects, and five-note polyphony there is quite a range of expression. You can even loop a pattern and
Livid Instruments has released a new video demonstrating their Guitar Wing controller: “Controllerism Godfather Molder performing “Not Your Mirror” using Livid Instruments’ Guitar Wing. Moldover is using the Guitar Wing to control Native Instruments Guitar Rig and Ableton Live for … Continue reading →
Like superhero armor, the sleek Guitar Wing fits over the edge of your guitar – your existing, beloved guitar – and gives it badass bonus powers. The crowd-funded accessory finally brings control for digital instruments and effects to the fingertips of guitar and bass players, without forcing them to change instruments or give up their conventional techniques.
Instead, Guitar Wing, via Bluetooth connection, provides pressure-sensitive pads, faders, buttons, switches, and (if you like) three-dimensional motion control right to the instrument. USB charged, rechargeable battery-powered, and with RGB color feedback and editing options, it’s ready to go anywhere and control anything. It comes with its own multi-effects suite, but more likely you already have software on a computer or mobile device you want to use.
And now, if you want one but put off buying one – just as we are late in writing about this – well, now is the time. Our friends Moldover and Livid Instruments, creator of the instrument, are bringing us the latest videos you may not have seen elsewhere. And in under 48 hours, as this week reaches its end, the crowd funding comes to its conclusion. That means it’s your last chance to get first in line for one under US$200 (or back it, starting at a buck).
Let’s have a look at how people are using this. And no, it turns out “controllerism” is not limited to minimal techno and EDM. Ahem. Like, let’s start in Spanish-language Colombian head-banging awesomeness.
From the mountains of Colombia all the way to our office in Austin, TX, Headcrusher came by share their awesome breed of Metal and how they are using the Guitar Wing. Using Presonus Studio One they are triggering samples and VST plugin guitar effects with the Wing. This allows the two guitarists of this five piece sound like an entire band without having everyone in the same room. For more information visit guitarwing.com and headcrusher.net
Okay, or maybe you want to just map to Ableton Live, and make minimal techno dub reggae.
Or maybe you can’t decide between Ableton and Bitwig. Let’s do … both, looping and DAW controlling and manipulating plug-in effects:
For a little more behind the scenes, we look to Jay Smith and Travis Redding of Livid, and Living Colour Guitarist Vernon Reid:
And lastly, here’s Maestro Mastermind Controllerist himself, the incomparable Matt Moldover, bathed in the misty-white fluorescent light of Anaheim’s NAMM trade show (mmm… can almost smell the boiled hot dogs and carpet shampoo):
Moldover also provides some insight into the inspiration for the Guitar Wing, his original Robocaster. It looks like what Les Paul would enter into Robot Wars, sending an evil guitar into the arena to destroy all it meets.
Fortunately, Livid and Moldover understand you don’t want to give up your current axe, and so we have something really beautifully practical. Can’t wait to see what people will do with it. When those packages get unwrapped after the crowd funding, do drop us a line at CDM HQ in Gotham City and let us know what you’ve done.
Electronic musicians – controllerists, if you will – may choose to augment themselves with machines. They may build elaborate custom electronics so they can express themselves live more than the default music technology would otherwise allow – acoustic, amplified, or digital.
But there has to be a human there first.
In a documentary film from November, Moldover talks about what drives him to make music. It’s that emotional place that motivates both his technological expression and songwriting, and that’s something I imagine will be poignant whatever genre you choose as your own.
“Four Track,” for its part, was fully crowd-funded (and then some), and will ship in the spring. A collaboration with electronics wizard Mitch Altman, it massively expands what an album is. Fit into a compact audio cassette case, it incorporates both the album and a custom all-in-one voice crusher.
But now, with Moldover moving into the final hours of his newest invention, Guitar Wing, it’s a perfect time to revisit the reason he works on this stuff. And there, sir, in the way you feel and that music heals, I am certain you’re anything but alone.
Published on Jan 21, 2014 Moldover Musical-AntiHero·28 videos
“Video courtesy of MJ Mont-Reynaud and Chris Tolan. Thanks to Matt Black, Simon Halstead, Miriam Wiener, David Zicarelli, Janet Ryu, Dave Hillel, Eddie Lloyd & ConCon, False Profit & Priceless, The Center, Calli Beck, Justin Young, Punktronica, The Flashbulb, The Shtetl, Rich DDT and the LoveTech community, and