End of LifeAs a Tyrell Corporation Nexus-6 replicant, Blade Runner’s Roy Batty had a predetermined life span of just four years – and he wanted it extended. Remonstrations with his creator, Eldon Tyrell, brought only the commiseration that he had ‘burned so very, very brightly’.

Comparable built-in end-of-life issues are increasingly impacting our music, musical instruments and music production. How brightly have we chosen to burn?

Hysteresis loopWhen professional digital audio made its entrance, the limitations of early technology combined with the excitement of some advocates made it a soft target for purists and sceptics. Then, as the tech found its feet and its potential became tangible, there was no going back.

Digital audio’s eventual coming of age, however, has brought on a hunger to revive the nuances of analogue.

Thunder overlay for the Sensel MorphThe very first synthesiser I owned was a Moog. And my second; and my third. I still have two of them, a Micromoog and Minimoog, but sold the third, an Opus 3, to help fund a Jupiter 8. Somehow, along the way, I’d borrowed an ARP Axxe and an Octave Cat, and would dearly have loved to get my hands on the Minimoog’s early contemporary, an ARP Odyssey.

Yes, I was an East Coast man; I just didn’t know it.

Brighton & Hove Albion Fan in the StandSo sport is back, in part, but fans are presently unwelcome at the matches being played – unless you count the cut-outs that the likes of Brighton & Hove Albion and Leeds United are using to give their grounds some veneer of normalcy.

Sound, though, is helping with live sports’ return to action. Unable to attend sports venues and events, sound promises to ensure that fans remain an integral part of live sports…

The Last Seat in the HouseWe were just a few days into the UK coronavirus lockdown, when a copy of The Last Seat in the House: The Story of Hanley Sound arrived on my doorstep. The book’s author, John Kane, had emailed me having decided that his was a book I needed to read. I was happy to oblige.

His timing was good, so I settled into my self-isolation with ‘the father of festival sound’ and a beer or two.

Trade show lanyardsWith only 13 countries presently likely to be remaining Covid-19 free, the live music and club industries worldwide have taken a heavy blow. The games industry, meanwhile, reports seeing an upturn in downloads while Billboard research indicates that around three in ten Americans claim to be listening to more radio since the US coronavirus outbreak.

We are glimpsing a new pro audio landscape… and the inside of musicians’ homes.

When it appeared in 1983, Midi changed my life – as it did for countless other keyboard players around the world. Like any revolution worthy of the name, its arrival wasn’t universally welcomed but it was unstoppable.

In the years since, Midi has melted into music making’s mainstream. Now it is in the spotlight again, with Midi’s Second Wave – welcome, Midi 2.0.

evolutionHaving explored the thinking and story behind the evolution concept, Sennheiser’s exclusive show-and-tell session in London gave the floor to the a handful of the mic systems’ users: Brian May guitar tech Pete Malandrone, monitor engineer Joe Campbell and Global Radio’s Chris Denham.

Between their contrasting viewpoints, they paint a first-hand picture of a defining microphone in Sennheiser’s remarkable history.

evolution‘Twenty years ago, a question was posed: should Sennheiser continue to produce dynamic microphones? Our prices had gone up and our profit had gone down because we were producing them in a very old-fashioned and expensive way.

Also, Sennheiser predominantly delivered microphones for the broadcast market, which weren’t attractive to the live sound market –partly because they were too expensive…’

The Pink Floyd Exhibition: Their Mortal RemainsReleased in March 1967, ‘Arnold Layne’ was the first of eight singles from the fledgling Pink Floyd that year. Fifty years on, and with an unassailable place in rock music history, Pink Floyd are the focus of an exhibition at London’s V&A Museum.

Rich in memorabilia, the exhibition is prefaced by the EMI console used for the recording of The Dark Side of the Moon displayed in the museum’s foyer and is littered with instruments and equipment from every stage of the band’s career.

Making WavesSharing time and a couple of bottles of Asahi with another former pro audio magazine editor in the bar of London’s Metropolis Studios recently, the hoary subject of equipment reviews raised its head once again. The observation this time was a new one, however…

It was the attention given to dedicated plug-ins as compared to the onboard effects suites found on live mixing desks.

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Fast-and-Wide.com An independent news site and blog for professional audio and related businesses, Fast-and-Wide.com provides a platform for discussion and information exchange in one of the world's fastest-moving technology-based industries.
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