Strøm (Gaudenz Badrutt & Christian Müller) > Working on LiSa and Max

Residency (20-30 may 2009)

Both of us – Christian and Gaudenz – made a new LiSa-setup, a combination of old, often used things and new functions. This work took a long time for programming. The research of an intuitive and more functional combination between Max (as a midi-router/-generator) and LiSa was connected with the constructing of a new LiSa-setup – for our way of work, some functions in LiSa are not well working and/or not in an intuitive way of musical thoughts. So we tried to use Max to replace and extend some LiSa-functions. Some remarks about specific possibilities:

Computerkeyboard as MIDI-keyboard: The tightness of the notes is not really good, mapping it by max works better. Mapping-change is possible in Max. With the modifier-keys (shift, option and control) ther are a lot more messages possible (for example for rarely used messages like preset-change).

MIDI-processors: For using ‘amplifying current zone’, its good to have the message for selecting a region in the buffer and then changing a controller step forward-step backward. With Max, its more stable to deal with this.

And other enhancement, that works far better by controlling it via Max, is multichannel-/surround-panning. MIDI-processors and tables in a layered setup is a possible solution, a control in Max is by far more intuitive and faster done.

‘Panic’: Key-command (Esc) in LiSa – there it is like a interruption / cut of all sounds. If this function is used a lot, it seems to be sense-full to have also a ‘all note off’ message, with the effect of releases and not just cuts.

MIDI snapshot control: More ‘layers’ at the same time of a x/y-coordinate-window is very useful in the context of quadrophonic music. Christian programmed a setup in Max for just computer-based quadrophonic music. The problem with LiSa was the immense message-lists coming in by MIDI. There leads to a very remarkable slowness in the system – for the moment not solvable…

Christian worked and experimented a lot with contact (piezo) – microphones; two of them like a ‘pendular’-system with a stereo-effect. That gives results in different, chaotic working delay-times between the sound of them. Gaudenz worked on the sound-connection between his modular-synthesizer (Doepfer A-100) and LiSa.

Rehearsals with our new LiSa-setups were very interesting to find new ways of playing, trying out the new functions (and security of the programming…) and going further in refining our musical language. Also to lead us to new possibilities that the new setup has opened.

A very special and funny moment was the visit of Max Matthews at Steim: His main interest in our studio was Gaudenz’ new Mackie-mixer…

Another very inspiring thing during our stay in Amsterdam was the contact with Michael Vorfeld and Uli Böttcher (who were also at Steim for the same time). The nice contact to these other (re-)searching musicians was very interesting and inspiring.

Our concert (may 30) was a very good possibility to have the ‘reality’ of a concert-situation with our new setups. A very interested audience has given a lot of discussions about music, form and aesthetics.

Over all, these were very good, intense and inspiring days.

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