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One Synth Challenge VI : The Undiscovered PulseWidth

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Re: One Synth Challenge VI : The Undiscovered PulseWidth

Postby Eddy Deegan » Tue Mar 09, 2021 10:50 am

I can't say much right now without giving the game away too soon but I've got a short tale to tell about my track, or more specifically the synth used to create it, later. Someone who works for the manufacturer likes it, anyway :-)

Unrelated, but I was flattered by a couple of guesses that associated me with tracks I wish I had created on the list!
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Re: One Synth Challenge VI : The Undiscovered PulseWidth

Postby Dave B » Tue Mar 09, 2021 11:30 am

More guesses? Or should I just blurt out who did what with what?
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Re: One Synth Challenge VI : The Undiscovered PulseWidth

Postby RichardT » Tue Mar 09, 2021 12:03 pm

Dave B wrote:More guesses? Or should I just blurt out who did what with what?

Answers please!
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Re: One Synth Challenge VI : The Undiscovered PulseWidth

Postby IAA » Tue Mar 09, 2021 12:04 pm

Despite being an analog synth nut I’ve long discovered that in a mix I can spot VA from real analog only in extreme cases! The OSC proves it again and again. I love it. It ought to be required listening over on GS.

The only obvious one to me is my track although I would have put money on Desmond getting it!

I’m always amazed at what OSC can draw out of a single synth. Great idea Dave and thanks for curating it.
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Re: One Synth Challenge VI : The Undiscovered PulseWidth

Postby Dave B » Tue Mar 09, 2021 12:22 pm

OK then, you asked for it. The results are ...... (drumroll....)

  1. Ain't Fooling No-one Rich Hanson (Korg MS-20 Legacy / Behringer K-2)
  2. Bing's Bong Dr. Bing Klazeby (DCO 106)
  3. Cinco Folderol (Yoshimi)
  4. Everest Rich T (Kontakt Library 'Arkhis')
  5. Ffenestra The Artist Formerly Known as Ramirez (Aled Hughes)(Moog Mother32/DFAM)
  6. For The Love of It Eddy Deegan (Arturia PolyBrute)
  7. Infamous Last Words? Rich Hanson (Behringer Neutron)
  8. The Lighthouse Rich T (Heavyocity : Evolve Mutations)
  9. Misty Mountain Pass Resistorman (ASM Hydrasynth)
  10. Mr Tickle takes a bath with his toaster Logarhythm (Vital)
  11. Nimrod (Tomita Style) alanqa (Roland Gaia)
  12. Nova5 Nickle15 (Korg Minilogue XD)
  13. Papa Was a Rolling Stone BFG145 (Korg Triton VST)
  14. Resonating over time IAA (Polymode)
  15. Star Cruiser Folderol (SY35)
  16. Woodwalk Al_diablo (Roland RD88)
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Re: One Synth Challenge VI : The Undiscovered PulseWidth

Postby Rich Hanson » Tue Mar 09, 2021 12:30 pm

To clarify my first one - one half is exclusively Behringer K-2 and the other half is exclusively MS-20 Legacy VST. I did my best to match the sounds as closely as possible. I'm not saying where the changeover is though, nor am I saying which comes first, you've got to work it out for yourself :P
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Re: One Synth Challenge VI : The Undiscovered PulseWidth

Postby blinddrew » Tue Mar 09, 2021 12:34 pm

Well, I'll claim my point for Cinco but none of my other guesses were close. :)

I'll just go back to listening to them all again and plotting my entry for the next one.

Excellent work everyone. :clap: :clap: :clap:
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Re: One Synth Challenge VI : The Undiscovered PulseWidth

Postby Eddy Deegan » Tue Mar 09, 2021 12:49 pm

Great work everyone!

Did anyone find my secret message? It may be easier now that you know which track to look in. I think Dave thought it was a bit hard to spot.

I got the PolyBrute last Thursday, and wrote the track on Saturday/Saturday night. During the process I discovered a couple of bugs in the firmware which got in the way of what I was trying to do a bit and I contacted Arturia support.

They confirmed that I had indeed discovered real bugs, and they should be addressed in an up-coming firmware update. During the course of that exchange I shared the work I was doing with them and the track got passed around their support folks, who said some nice things about it.

The PolyBrute is an epic bit of kit and the morphee controller is far from gimmicky - it's very, very nice to use and I used it a lot to inject lots of modulations into the recordings all over the place. It also differs from the MatrixBrute a lot, so anyone who sold their monosynth thinking the Poly would replace it made a mistake IMHO!

The square-sounding lead sound in the middle, which has the 'trill' effects on it was achieved using the arpeggiator set to 1/32nd notes at 128bpm. The patch has envelope settings that make it sound non-arpeggiated when a single key is held down, but when two or more keys overlap the arps kick in noticeably to make that effect.

I'll add some proper thoughts on the other tracks in the playlist a bit later but I was proper impressed and it was nice to see some new names :clap: :clap: :clap:
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Re: One Synth Challenge VI : The Undiscovered PulseWidth

Postby Folderol » Tue Mar 09, 2021 2:22 pm

Well, I'm glad that I was at least able to identify Eddy's - although with the wrong synth.
Very impressed with alanqa's Nimrod - we'll have to keep an eye on this muso :lol:
it seems to be getting harder to identify composers and synths, rather than the other way round. So seemingly folks are getting better and disguising their styles, and synths are getting so powerful they can effectively cover each other to a great extent.

I, on the other hand seem to be going backwards :(
'Star Cruiser' was a total nightmare to produce. I actually started on it when Dave first announced this challenge, and the SY35 fought me every inch of the way :(
I'm amazed that in the '90s I had the patience to set up most of the patches used here, as when I tried to add/change some not only was it damn hard work working though a tiny screen with multi-layered menus, even working from the manual I just could not get them to stick. So ended up writing a step-by step crib list to re-apply them every time I wanted to fire up the synth and do more work on it.

As I said to Dave, never under any circumstances will I attempt to do the same :crazy:

I was surprised at how many people got my 'Cinco', although that wasn't my main effort, but one thrown in fairly late on the off-chance.
As it's name suggests this has a theme of 5
5 different pieces, with 5 different voice patches and creation methods, covering 5 octaves. 5 different time signatures (multiples of 5 BPM) and a total of 175 bars, with 5 different keys (descending 5ths) and a total time of 5 minutes.
:bouncy:
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Re: One Synth Challenge VI : The Undiscovered PulseWidth

Postby nickle15 » Tue Mar 09, 2021 2:50 pm

So many great tracks here! The plan was for me and the family to have a card night on Sunday night and listen together. That got derailed so we're rescheduling. But I've been able to work through most of the tracks and it's just so inspiring to hear all this fantastic work! Great job everyone!!
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Re: One Synth Challenge VI : The Undiscovered PulseWidth

Postby Eddy Deegan » Tue Mar 09, 2021 2:52 pm

Folderol wrote:Well, I'm glad that I was at least able to identify Eddy's - although with the wrong synth.

That made me laugh - I'll reveal that if you'd found the secret message then you wouldn't have guessed a Hydrasynth :-)

Folderol wrote:Very impressed with alanqa's Nimrod - we'll have to keep an eye on this muso :lol:

Completely agree - sterling work, very impressive indeed!

Folderol wrote:I, on the other hand seem to be going backwards :(
'Star Cruiser' was a total nightmare to produce. I actually started on it when Dave first announced this challenge, and the SY35 fought me every inch of the way :(

Sometimes it goes like that. I nearly had a 'head in the hands' moment when I found one of the bugs I mentioned on the PolyBrute before. Fortunately I was able to work around it.

I ended up submitting my track 3 or 4 times early Sunday morning, having pulled an all-nighter to get it to the point I was happy to, and then revising it at the last moment.

Folderol wrote:I was surprised at how many people got my 'Cinco', although that wasn't my main effort, but one thrown in fairly late on the off-chance.

I latched onto that one fairly quickly, but I think I'm tuned into your style now (as I note some others are to mine). I am going to try and do something very different next time, and disguise myself :lol:
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Re: One Synth Challenge VI : The Undiscovered PulseWidth

Postby Dave B » Tue Mar 09, 2021 3:29 pm

Ironically, I have never done so much work on one of these challenges, yet didn't get anything that I was happy with to submit!

I did try a traditional approach using an AS Telemark and was having endless fun with the semi-modular nature of it. But I realised that tuning it is a pain (where's the 'Tune' button when you want it?) and the track just became a bunch of bits.

Next I looked at doing a similar thing to BFG145, but to take vocals and drums from a live track and replace the rest. I got a fair way through (and got ok at Logic's pitch to midi detection), but matching up a live performance was more than my choice of (again a rompler) synth could manage.

Several tunes that were in my writing folder were looked at and ended up being rejected as they seemed to be crying out for different kinds of keyboards. I could have used something like the Kronos and done a load of different types of sounds, but wasn't happy with that. Also, they were mostly major bits and I was in a bit of a minor mood.

I did get really close with my last stab as that was an initially nice idea around suspended chord changes. But I started down a certain route and realised that I'd musically muddled a couple of things up and it was a) sounding bland and b) didn't properly take advantage of the nifty suspensions that had started it off.

In terms of synths, I also played around with Polymode and loved it to bits. I've never played a real Polymoog and was curious to see if it was the dog that so many people claim it to be. I can sort of see why people weren't overly enamoured with it, but it's a bit of a belter if you ask it to do what it's good at. Conversely, I had a fiddle around with the CS80v and am now totally off the idea of getting a clone of the real thing. If you were a player in the 70s when that was the best you could get, then it was probably a godsend. But as a synth ... (shudders) ... not for me thanks

Time to do some re-shuffling I reckon. Some kit out, others in. And have more fun!
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Re: One Synth Challenge VI : The Undiscovered PulseWidth

Postby blinddrew » Tue Mar 09, 2021 3:54 pm

Eddy Deegan wrote:Did anyone find my secret message? It may be easier now that you know which track to look in. I think Dave thought it was a bit hard to spot.
If you're expecting us to decode the morse code then I fear you may have over-estimated us.
If it's the little well-known motif in the drop section then it would work better if I could remember the name of the tune! :D
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Re: One Synth Challenge VI : The Undiscovered PulseWidth

Postby Eddy Deegan » Tue Mar 09, 2021 4:19 pm

blinddrew wrote:If you're expecting us to decode the morse code then I fear you may have over-estimated us.

Fair enough! It's a little easter egg that worked out musically so I'm content to leave it in there and see if any future listeners notice it down the line ;)
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Re: One Synth Challenge VI : The Undiscovered PulseWidth

Postby MarkyC » Tue Mar 09, 2021 5:46 pm

Blimey – just to say thanks to you all for a splendid afternoon with the window open and loads of fresh and interesting stuff to listen to!
Plenty of subconscious head bobbing to tracks, which is always a good sign, as well as thought full and uplifting stuff.

Thank you!

Ohh an Easter egg in a track - that's me off work early !
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