Concentrics 1 + 2


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both album covers are video synth frames…hinting at the fidelity and style of the audio which they represent

i made the choice because i see similarities between travel of voltage captured in video synthesis [or circuit bent glitch video mixing] and water

fluidity is a central part of the conceptual catalyst for these tracks…structural decisions and improvisational choices were centered on shift of focus toward overlooked elements (eg. from melody to rhythm, or noise) but the definition of concepts, rules, etc were not rigid

tools were selected based on ability to alter perception of time and space (to provide a sense of motion) . several digital delay, reverb, and pitchbend/timestretch instruments were combined in parallel or patched sequentially to achieve this

my relationship with the various tools (and their designers) guided the flow of ideas and my enthusiasm for creating the tracks . hopefully you enjoy some of them too!

(if you would like to download or share with a friend w/o purchasing, dm me…i have plenty of codes to hand out)


i would love to talk about specific tracks but for those curious these were inspired heavily by use of norns softcut apps, softcut as applied in prosody m4l suite, and ableton for looping/ fx / feedback and pitch flipping

past discussion about some of these songs can be found elsewhere on lines

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Your work is always so inspiring and motivating to me. Looking forward to diving into each of these today.

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really really nice work - as someone who is just now diving into the world of m4l/computer music tools generally it’s inspiring to hear these kinds of ‘organic’ sounds i would ordinarily associate with weird hardware synths, tape manipulation, etc come out of the computer. thanks!

edit: you need to find a rapper for espi `` on concentrics 1! that beat is :fire:

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thanks

for me it’s an obsession that i’m completely as ease admitting…i LOVE digital tools and computer based fx (especially digital “tape” effects)

when you pair any source (digital or analog) with the right combination of compression, delay, reverb, and eq then the textures will come alive and pulsate in a “natural” way

edit: also it should be said that the tools themselves are crafted with phenomenal level of detail and wit by literal geniuses of the trade (@zebra’s work on all versions of softcut; @randy’s aalto/aaltoverb; @RABID’s @Rodrigo’s karma object; and Shuto Yotaro’s 2020 app fx set such a high standard for flexibility/playability in the digital realm)

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Lovely stuff!

You are incredible at this. Very good (and creative/unique) mixing. Also made me realize I need to work on dampening some of the vibrating gear in my (relatively new) office/studio room.


Curious about the two records, as opposed to say, one long one. Could you talk about how you decided what went on each one, and how you went about compiling them/track order/etc.?

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that’s a big deal to me…i still want to improve obviously but i’m not interested in every track sounding identical

mixing is such an underrated area for creative exploration and for me it’s importance is tied to my love of dj culture and hiphop (how i got into electronics)

this collection is also a testament to a bit more assured usage of ableton which i’ve struggled to learn for the past 3 years…basics were relatively easy but i’m only just starting to feel like i can quickly dial in the atmosphere i think a track needs

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thank u so much for these @glia - I could listen to amma for a long time and did. comforting to hear that noise bit from dirge (which I stole from rodrigo)

&& love the approach to looping from a rythm perspective. it’s rare but needed

yr speaking a lot to processing techniques (ones which I rlly relate to rn) but curious if there were any tends in sound sources used. feels super mysterious on that end

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title: source filename [or date of earliest known session] . patch notes + apps used



oaku: 090719 . compass sampled from cassette notebook** / softcut pitch warble

auze: 062119c / 090717a . merged sessions / otis loop and orca sequence [mic’d bell was source for otis]

mihd: 062019b . otis from cassette freestyle / 2 timescales

yoia: 052319a . aalto twice … synth freestyle and midi shadow / ekphras twice + manic ableton drum flip

gbis: 062515 . sp404 delay doubling

zeau: 062119d . ableton resampled otis loop from “auze” / sample pitch play

phro: 090619 . otis sampled from minidisc / ekphras duet

amma: 092119c . compass sampled from cassette into ekphras / comparing three timescales [ for my wife]

espi: 062619b . ableton proof of concept / resampled sp style beat / 3rd revision of “bun”

akwa: 080317b . aleph acid session (dsyn + waves driven by kria op) / raw output via cassette


bun: 062419 . ableton flip sampled from cassette + drum archive

haf: 091717a . whimpanel seq (tt+jf+3sis+coldmac) / stretched and carved in ableton

drk: 062119b . hd-rot trigg for analog drum machine (sds 800) / flipped by cranes

aup: 091319a . kalimba thru sniarg [aleph grains] / ekphras too [tribute to high zero ]

uxi: 092319b . tuned contact mic samples [lom + walnut + ceramic shard] ableton puzzle

weg: 101819 . midi shadow of sample fed to jf … rough signal path ~ crow > jf w/ > > splosh > rip > otis > dirge

num: 081317a . aalto…that’s it

kin: 091119 . “drk” alternate by bugaev and i / starring reaktor feedback + aaltoverb

cha: 062019a . cassette sample of synth drumming / respiration + hand drums (udu)



** material on the cassette and minidisc “notebooks” are usually demos or freestyle synth and percussion cycles including snapshots of various instruments i’ve owned…aleph, op1, volca fm, organelle, minijack + banana synths, software like 2020 and aalto as wells as bells and flutes

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Excellent question @jlmitch5

It’s due to another part of the loose metaphor. I’ve always intended to collect and release a group of related albums, in this case “concentrics” which will continue to ripple/expand from the initial released album.

So i knew i wanted these songs to form a series (particularly after beginning the process thread in September). Once I shared the tenth track on soundcloud (and acquired crow) I felt it was time to evaluate how/when to release the first collection.


Some tracks seemed ready and were part of the original track sequencing process (whether they were crafted specifically for the project or not):

oaku - concentrics ii
midh - predates series of ten
zeau - predates series
phro - concentrics i
espi - predates series
bun - predates series
uxi - concentrics ix

Then i moved on to checking my hd for other tracks which i could revise/complete quickly in order to add them:

auze - source predates series [became concentrics xii]
num - source predates series [became concentrics xi)
gbis - predates series
amma - revision of concentrics vii

While waiting for bandcamp to upload tracks & evaluating other candidates i reached a turning point: for some reason i chose to tinker with tears and turn it into haf [which technically became concentrics xiv]

It didnt seem to totally fit the texture and mood of the others (to my ears neither did uxi). But haf did fit with kin (i was kinda on the fence about the track before).

I also couldnt figure out how to seperate espi and bun enough to avoid sounding too repetitive or disrupting the flow of the first few tracks on tape 1. Knowing that this was planned as a series I decided on a whim to start a new album which would accomodate a slighty different framing of the songs. Once i chose album art for the second tape I just used my intuition while selecting and adding orphan tracks as filler/punctuation to each track sequence.

Eventually that grew include:

aup - concentrics iii
weg - concentrics x
drk - predates series
akwa - predates series
cha - predates series


I already have ideas for the third in the series but will let the tunes form naturally

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I muted the ‘releases’ category awhile back for a variety of reasons, so I thank you for posting a link to this on Twitter. This is a great thread to chew on :slight_smile:

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thanks @sellanraa!

more info up thread but still want to acknowledge this point

the more i think about it the more weird it seems but sometimes the source is a mystery to me too…as can be seen above i have a system for indexing digital files by date . where confusion starts is that if i revise the file in any way i rename it with the date of revision (with no additional data pointing to the previous file)

some are digitized + eq’d passages from tapes or external device memory (norns / op1 for example)

others are exported daw sessions (2020 logic or ableton)

frequently they are synth/sampler freestyles (eurorack, aleph, sp404 if really old)

a few are acoustic “field” recordings of drums flutes and percussion made in my house


complicating matters further i have hundreds of files on my hd from nikita bugaev that are improperly labeled and we both joke that we sometimes can’t tell whose work is whose

but we have an easygoing collaborative relationship and view of ownership/revision so he knows he can do whatever he wants with my tunes and he’s granted me the same freedom


surprisingly…one of the tracks is sourced from you in a round about way . i used the brief snippet you dm’d me a few days ago in ableton [w/ convert to midi] to sequence jf via crow on weg

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I’ve listened through both albums multiple times already since last evening, and continue listening. Absolutely beautiful stuff. I also really appreciate your openness about process. When I get a little more time to dig through the information you’ve already provided and questions you’ve already answered, I’ll probably have a little more to ask about your process and tools, as my interested was piqued after seeing some of your instagram posts.

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this just made me laugh a lot

glad I could help !

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welcome @loma
really glad you are enjoying the collections!

i’ve been inspired by this community to initiate open dialogue about the way i make stuff
generally i think it’s a good thing for us all

it also challenges me to think deeply about my processes and intention which is also great cause i’m still learning so much everyday

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Wow incredibly inspiring. Great work! Very deep sounds.

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Thanks for writing this up!

I think it’s neat that you combined your more process-oriented work that focuses on following the ideas on concentrics with curating choices from your archive in an intuitive fashion. It kind of blurs the line of something that should be thought about (in a sort of program notes, active listening, art/academic music kind of way), as well as listened to (because it sounds cool, hah! In a more “popular” music kind of way).

The fact you kept things open to keep changing, even at the stage where your uploading to bandcamp is very inspiring! I have a sort of similar “go through the archive, find the stuff that fits what I’m trying to do” kind of way working, but at least for the last record I made, I did that stuff months and months before finalizing mix, sending out for feedback/revision, revising, etc. I would say it was a much more “formal” process, and thinking about trying to do something much more free sounds really cool

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after your comment i listened again and…not gonna lie
it’s much better than i initially thought

with all music (but especially my own) the most clear dividing line is between [1] songs i’m always in the mood for and [2] songs i’m sometimes/rarely in the mood for…

espi probably suffered from falling into to category 2 because the other edit that exists is firmly in category 1 and i personally prefer it:

i need a bare minimum to entertain myself with sound…at times i add other elements to what works (for me) as a concession to listeners or as practice just to see if i can do something more complex

the extra percussion in espi is an example of both . i still sneak my subversive approach into the modifications tho…the bass drum smacks first and seems like the focal point but when global pitch drops i actually want to subtly prod focus toward the bell pattern

it starts by sounding like a loop but was played for the length of the song and a looser pattern with imperfections reveals itself as time goes on . its a flourish i’ve observed in african music which is pretty clever and quite fun to employ when playing repetitive stuff in an arrangment…little details like that make for interesting methods of performance/recording

i know you didn’t ask for a deep dive analysis but espi has grown on me more as i gain distance from the release and look with another perspective . it’s a track built upon principles i treasure and definitely captures a singular moment i can enjoy looking back on now

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now people have had a bit more time to digest
…any other feedback/critique/questions?