Jan 23

I haven’t heard from Kat in a long time. I bought their electronic bass drum many years ago. It wasn’t quite as responsive as the current Roland V-Drums but it was very heavy and would not move no matter how hard you played. I was also very interested in their TrapKat, but I did not get around to buying one.

It seems today Kat Digital Percussion are at Namm 2016 with their new kt4 digital drum set. Have a look at the youtube clip above showing the drum and percussion sounds that were created. I love the sounds on this kit. You can see all their latest KAT gear on their website at katpercussion.com

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Jan 22

Another fantastic idea from Zoom – the new Zoom ARQ Wireless Bluetooth Control. It is a Drum Machine, it is a Sequencer, it is an electronic tambourinesque percussion instrument, it is a Synth, it is a Midi Controller, it is a looper with a built-in accelerometer. What can’t this thing do?

You should see it in the shops about April time $599. Zoom say it is for Electronic Music Production and performance. With its wireless Bluetooth Ring Controller, you can get out amongst the crowd.
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Jan 22

One of the biggest surprises for me this Namm is the release of the Yamaha Montage with its new Motion Control Synth engine. Yamaha state that it “sets the next milestone with sophisticated dynamic control, massive sound creation and streamlined workflow from the company that brought you the DX and the Motif”. The Montage is certainly very good-looking synth packed with sounds, so much so that I immediately think this is going to be expensive. There are the usual 3 models with 61, 76 and 88 keys and the cost ranges from approx £2100 to £2800. I really wish they would bring out a rack mounted version of it as I have said before like many other synth enthusiast, I do not have room for another keyboard.

The Motion Control Synthesizer Engine controls two famous Yamaha Sound Engines – Advanced Wave Memory 2 (AWM2) and FM-X. What is really useful is the AWM2 engine is compatible with previous generation Motif libraries, but is exponentially more powerful than the previous Motif XF flagship, with nearly ten times more wave memory, integrated flash, double the effects and twice the polyphony.

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Jan 21

Namm 2016 and Roland release the new EC-10 Electronic Layered Cajon. Have a look at youtube clip above and you will hear it performed by the very beautiful Professional percussionist, Heidi Joubert.

The new Roland EC-10 EL Cajon is the first of its kind. It is an acoustic cajon but it can be with layered with electronic sounds. These range from electronic drum sounds to more traditional acoustic percussion sounds as well as FX. It is the same size as a standard cajon (50 x 30 x 30 cm) and the playing surface is made of sapele wood.

It has 30 built-in electronic kits for layering with acoustic cajon sounds and each kit includes two independent sounds that can be triggered from the head and edge of the playing surface. It also includes studio-optimized cajon sounds to enhance the instrument’s acoustic sound, providing additional depth and punch.

It comes with an Integrated amplifier and coaxial speaker and runs on AA-size batteries providing you with up to 12 hours of continuous playing time or an AC adaptor (DC 5.7 V).

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Jan 18

Here is an interesting plugin from Waves and Greg Wells. Greg has given us two plugins in this series so far the VoiceCentric and the PianoCentric. This one is called the MixCentric and is designed to sit on your master buss. Greg states that “This plugin is very special, and much agonizing and experimenting went into it. The MixCentric plugin will quickly get your track sounding like an expertly EQed and compressed mix, using the same techniques employed by many of the best mix engineers.” This plugin has been designed as a quick and easy way for you to finalize your mix by using EQ, compression and harmonic distortion. You can use it on your master buss or groups.

Greg is a songwriter and mix engineer who has worked with some great artists like Katy Perry, Adele, OneRepublic and Mika.

Jan 16

Namm 2016  – IK and Gavin Lurssen – new mastering product

Here is a great teaser that we may well have to wait until Friday next week to find out exactly what it is that IK and Gavin Lurssen are set to unveil that will assist us with Mastering. Have a watch of this YouTube clip and see what you think. I am not sure if it is going to be hardware or software but I am guessing it will be software.

In addition you only have a couple of days left to submit  your  mix which if selected will be mastered by world-renowned mastering engineers Gavin Lurssen and Reuben Cohen.   At NAMM 2016, during the live presentation of this new mastering product from IK Multimedia and Gavin Lurssen , it could be your mix that is mastered.

To enter your mix go here : – http://submityourmix.hscampaigns.com/, simply fill out the submission form and upload your mix to SoundCloud or Dropbox  – Good Luck.

Jan 16

celemony_ melodyne_4

Just when you least expect it, they go and release a new version of Melodyne called Celemony Melodyne 4. I am sure this will be shown at Namm 2016.

If you are already a user of Celemony Melodyne, I would suggest you log into your account and check to see if you are entitled to a free upgrade. If you are not the pricing and upgrade pricing is as follows:-

New users to Melodyne 4 Prices for the four different versions are:-
Melodyne 4 Studio €699, Melodyne 4 Editor €399, Melodyne 4 Assistant €249 and Melodyne 4 Essentials €99

Upgrades to the big Melodyne 4 Studio package
Upgrade from Melodyne assistant (all versions) is €449
Upgrade from Melodyne essential (all versions) is €599
Upgrade from Melodyne studio (Version 1 or 2) or Melodyne cre8 (all versions) is €149

Upgrades to the Melodyne 4 Editor package

Upgrade from Melodyne assistant (all versions) is €149
Upgrade from Melodyne essential (all versions) is €299
Upgrade from Melodyne uno or Melodyne plugin is €149

Have a look at Celemony’s website to give you more info on the versions but this update is mainly about the big studio package.

Jan 15

PD*60708286

Hi,

I am very sorry but 2016 has started badly with my website out of action. I am very pleased to announce that it is now back up and running again and I appologise for any inconvenience this has caused you.

It may well be half way through the month but we are getting very close to The 2016 Winter NAMM trade show in Anaheim, California which begins next friday . Already the excitement has started with the anouncement of a new synth from Korg called the Minilogue, a 37 slim-key fully programmable analog polyphonic synthesizer costing £435.

Also, there are the rumors of a new synth from Yamaha called the Montage. Speculation as to whether or not this will become the successor to the Motif is being discussed in Yamaha forums.

We may also see a new Roland sampler added to the product line-up, possibly as part of the AIRA series.

It seems that all the main companies have been recently bringing out products regressing back to yesteryear recreating sounds from the 70’s and 80’s. Personally I wish one of these companies would build a synth for 2016 that would produce sounds like Spectrasonics Omnisphere which are right up-to-date but not rely on a computer to store all of its sounds and have problems of latency. The Korg Kronos is probably the best at this at present but it is still heavily loaded with presets that look to recreate real instruments. Whilst this is good to have, it would be nice to have a synth that recreates solely the software synths sounds that we have today.

Anyway, let’s see what Namm brings us next week.

Dec 24

*   A VERY MERRY CHRISTMAS TO YOU ALL   *

merry_xmas_tony_long_music

Thank you for your continued support throughout the year and I am sorry my time has not been fully devoted to the site. I have been very busy improving my skills in the art of recording, mixing and mastering. It seems that as I have increased my skills this year so has my collection of plug-ins and I have been very pleased with the updates that Cakewalk have done to my DAW – Sonar Platinum.

As always as January 2016 fast aproaches, I look forward to NAMM. Already, the possibility of new synth from Yamaha interests me – what have they been doing for the last few years? The same goes for Access. It seems their fantastic synth the Virus has been forgotten about? The world’s financial climate has meant that we are not being flooded with new products and those that are coming our way, seem to be smaller and smaller and very plastic and lightwight – is this really what everyone wants?

Anyway enjoy Christmas Day which in England is only an hour and half away – see you in the new year – Tony x

Dec 20

ROLI NOISE 5D – Free Virtual Seabord for iPhone and iPad

This looks like the best freebie available before Christmas for your iPhone or iPad. I really like the idea of having a Roli Rise keyboard that they released back in September but they are a bit expensive. I was therefore very surprised to hear about this freebie which is absolutely brilliant – you have got to get this.

The RISE, has this awesome MPE which stands for Multi-dimensional Polyphonic Expression. In simple english the whole keyboard surface has note on, key position along the length of it, and pressure (all per note). They are not the first company to do this but I would say they are or will be the most successful.

Apple meantime, with the iPhone 6S also introduced 3D Touch to its capabilities. No doubt the boffins at ROLI had a light bulb moment, as since then, they’ve been working to bring thier new free NOISE app to the market. Essentially on iPhone 6S, NOISE gives you the MPE playing experience (aside from the largess of the actual keyboard) but on your phone screen. You can apply the same pressure and positional control that you can with the Seaboard together with its own Mobile Sound Engine.

It has some 25 great sounds which I think come from their EQUATOR software synth. If you want more sounds you will be able to get these by purchasing from the App itself.

So if you are like me and want to experience what MPE is like but can not afford a Seaboard Rise, this is for you – free. You can only currently get it for the iPhone (iOS 9 up), the iPad version is not yet available.

Available free via the iTunes Store – what are you waiting for?

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