Saturday, September 6, 2014

Luppp as an Oscillator: Creating New Sounds With Luppp And Resonant Filters

This video documents a technique I used on this track,  The "bubbling" sounds on Barbelo and the Three Steles Of Seth are the result of playing a drum loop in Luppp at various speeds through multiple resonant filters and gates (hosted in JACK Rack).  The implementation in the video is a little simpler than what I used on the track and I do not manipulate the filters while recording, but the principles are the same.  This video is meant to highlight Luppp's role in the process.

At the beginning of the video you can hear me turn one of the filters off and back on.  This is just to illustrate what the filters are doing.  In this case, removing a lot of sound but also adding sound at the resonant frequency.

At the end you can hear the activity of the gate after the filters.  When one of the loops stops you can hear the gate cutting off the remaining loop, which no longer has the first loop's "help" keeping the gate open.

You never hear the original, unfiltered loops in this video.  They are the same loops used in this one,

Luppp allows you to multiply and divide tempo by multiples of 2, instantly.  You do this by telling Luppp to treat the loop as having a certain number of beats (powers of 2 from 1 to 64).  For example, in two clicks you can tell Luppp to play an 8 bar loop at 1/8 the current tempo by setting its length to 64.  This allows Luppp to feed radically different textures into a series of filters or other effects, making it a very flexible sound source for, essentially, sample-based synthesis.  Unlike developing a new virtual instrument in a conventional sampler, Luppp will keep playing until to tell it to stop, creating space for all kinds of real-time experimentation.  Record what you are doing and you can go back and reuse the best bits, even if you don't remember how to recreate them.

Tuesday, September 2, 2014

Another Luppp Screencast, But With Normal Drums

Luppp Looping Demo With Severed Fifth Samples

This is a quick screen recording of me playing with Luppp (from Open AV)
 using some loops I made from Severed Fifth samples. I threw this together
while preparing for my talk about Luppp at Ohio Linux Fest 2014 (October 
24-26, Columbus--registered yet?).

There are a number of other, arguably much more informative, videos about Luppp
on YouTube, but here are a few interesting facts about this first one of mine.

1. It is recorded in a virtual machine. For some time I thought serious audio
work in VMs was a dead end. After all, how could a technology based on
preemption ever get latency down to an acceptable level? Well, here's your
evidence. I don't know why it works, but it does. Granted, you probably
don't want to do live overdubbing this way, but playback and manipulation
(while screencasting) obviously work.

The reason I did this in a virtual machine is that I can't get screen recording
to work right in my laptop's native LMDE install. This screencast was recorded
in Ubuntu Studio in a VirtualBox VM on top of LMDE. The screen recorder is
SimpleScreenRecorder.  I have to say Ubuntu Studio is not Debian-like enough
for my taste, but I can't argue with the fact that this, you know, worked.

2. I posted another video yesterday, recorded with RecordMyDesktop, only to
take it down when I realized the audio was from the computer's mic, not the
output of Luppp.  That was embarrassing and was finding NO
way to fix it.  Everybody but me seems to love that app.  I think the problem
may be as simple as SimpleScreenRecorder having better JACK support, but
I don't really know.

3. Why Severed Fifth? Well, because I met Jono Bacon once and something about
him screamed "Sample me." Besides his well known ties to the Free Software
world, there is the fact that all of the music he has released as Severed Fifth is
available under Creative Commons licenses (CC-By-SA and CC-By-NC-SA).
That makes this sort of sampling nice and legal. My recording, above, is
CC-By-NC-SA, to comply with Severed Fifth's license.

I honestly don't remember HOW I got some of these sounds out of Severed Fifth
recordings, only that I did.

Saturday, August 23, 2014

Giving Introduction to Luppp Talk At Ohio Linux Fest, Friday Oct. 24, 2014

My proposal to speak about Luppp at Ohio Linux Fest 2014 has been accepted.  I don't have a time slot yet but it will probably be sometime Friday, Oct. 24.

Luppp is a musical looping tool released by OpenAV Productions and Harry van Haaren in December 2013.  I will be covering what Luppp is, what it does and demonstrating ways that it is useful.  

Here is something very short I wrote about Luppp this past spring.

Here is a track on which I used Luppp.

Here is Harry performing at the 2012 Linux Audio Conference, using, among other things, something that looks like a very early version of Luppp.