Feedback February (compilation finished!)

It’s actually a computer program that renders graphics in real-time. We made it by scanning real-life locations using photogrammetry software, that gave us point clouds of around 10 million colored dots per scene. The we wrote some custom code to bend, twist and distort space, we made a soundtrack, and animated everything to the beat. There is some more info about it on my website if you are curious.

3 Likes

I think I get that bit, but am trying to work out how it is experienced in a gallery…

1 Like

interested to know how you created these. is there a write-up anywhere? any chance you could share some details?

It wasn’t really intended to be seen in a gallery, we created it for a demoscene event — essentially a contest for cool and technically challenging audiovisual programs (which we won!). We might turn it into a gallery thing in the future by reusing the graphics techniques, but I think it needs some surrounding context to make it more meaningful than a thing that looks cool for the sake of looking cool.

2 Likes

Sure, it was relatively simple to the best of my memory…

Essentially it is a scream-y self-oscillating filter (Malekko Dual Borg) running through another filter to tame it, into a mixer which is multed and fed back into itself. Then sent through a Z-DSP reverb, where the feedback is naturally overdriving and adding yet more saturation. Just for good measure, after sending the signal to my external mixer, I think I routed the FX send from that back into my case and the internal mixer.

Then it was just a matter of feeling out the variables I’d given myself: self-oscillating filter cutoff frequency, subsequent filter cutoff, “dry” and “feedback” channels on the eurorack mixer, and the FX send level on my external mixer. It was kind of a game of allowing just enough feedback to keep the whole thing going, without letting any one part clip to the point of pure harsh noise. The modules themselves did a lot of the work as they interacted in complex ways and I think the reverb was the secret weapon in keeping it pleasant, as it rolls off nicely.

4 Likes

Bit of a basic question: I have a second pedal board with a Boss DD7 and a TC Electronic Flashback II. With both pedals, if you set the repeat time short but the feedback level high, all kinds of weird hums and drones emerge. Is that counted as feedback?

1 Like

I would say so. The feedback control is emulating a literal feedback increase you’d do with analog/tape delay.

Digital feedback loops have extremely unpredictable behavior in my experience, that makes them super fascinating. Because they act on samples of the audio, they have glitchy, discrete strangeness to the artifacts where as analog stuff tends to equalize in smoother/continuous ways.

3 Likes

i love that first piece! would love to read more about how you achieved these sounds.

Quoting myself from another thread (which is really worth visiting, lots of interesting discussion about feedback), it’s also possible to get very smooth and organic feedback digitally:

10 Likes

This sounds cool, I’ll participate! Maybe not daily, but I’ll be happy to make a track or two.

1 Like

Feedback February came early. In VCV RackTides into Clouds, into Chronoblob, back into clouds, then into Plateau and Feline. Driven by a heavily self patched Marbles, Rampage, Brances and a VCA.

3 Likes

Thank you! I elaborated on the basic set-up a little upthread. LMK if you’re wondering about anything else.

1 Like

This sounds like a fun idea. Feedback has always played a role in my music but I haven’t sat down and just played with feedback for the sake of it before. Did some experimenting last night and it led to some really wild places. I’ll be sure to post some #feedbackfeb recordings!

Also last night’s experiments led me to really want a matrix ring modulator. I’m working with a Doepfer A-138m in bipolar mode, and having the polarity and amplitude of each connection under voltage control would be so incredible for this.

1 Like

Hello everyone, and welcome to Feedback February! Reminder, if you are interested in participating and want to share some of your experiments on social media, please use the hashtag #feedbackfeb

I have added information about the compilation to the top post, should you want to participate. Thanks again @AudioObscura for the idea and @jrdnrndl for offering to create some art for it!

I’m really excited to see what people end up creating!

1 Like

I don’t really use social media but I decided to goof around today and made this:

It’s two takes of the same feedback path: a soundhole insert acoustic guitar pickup into a Moog filter/distortion pedal, then into a Vibesware string sustainer/magnetic exciter. The first take is through a dobro, recorded acoustically, the other take is a pedal steel guitar through an amplifier separate from the feedback loop.

You can hear the feedback path shift from going through the strings to being a magnetic field next to them imparting energy. I was constantly moving the position of the pickup and resonator to get different relationships, as well as changing the filter cutoff on the Moog pedal via expression.
The dobro I did completely without touching the strings, the pedal steel I was barring throughout and using various knee levers to change the pitch.

All slathered in delay and reverb in post.

8 Likes

This evening, I wanted to explore self patching between mangrove and 3 sisters to see if I could find anything interesting and I did! If you run mangrove back into itself via the air input through the filter (counterclockwise on the attenuverter seemed to sound best) you can create interesting, aggressive self resonating-like textures that have a unique character. Messing with air to push the original signal can cause the output to choke in interesting ways.

3 Likes

Two more for the second day of February. The first track here is just me playing guitar into an EQD Dispatch Master with the settings cranked for infinite repeats. This delay/reverb combo does a good job of doing this without actually going into self osc craziness, so I am taking advantage of that here.

Second track is just a self patched Elements, which is an excellent source of feedback. Just take the outputs and run them into the inputs, then turn the dials. The signal is then sent to Plateau for some verb and Feline to filter out the high end. Enjoy!

7 Likes

Here’s a first noodle. Benjolin outs clocking Magneto and 3 sisters resonance for shifting feedback frequencies. Recorded at 192khz, then layered at multiple octaves. Not much effort at any sort of arrangement other than chance collisions…

: )

5 Likes


Just some no input mixing with a DJ mixer and pedals. Not the best noise performance I’ve done but it’s very ripe to be used for sampling in some bigger project down the line.

Massively limited in post, dynamics are still ludicrous.

4 Likes

not sure if this is feedback-focused enough to qualify, but my favorite patch right now is cold mac as a compressor, feeding back on itself. if i can figure out how to reasonably edit videos for instagram I’ll do that too to boost the hashtag, in the meantime i’ve got big millennial luddite energy lol.

5 Likes