Haken Continuum as a Theremin Effect

Posted: 1/31/2016 6:45:09 PM
mpampouras

From: Epalinges, Switzerland

Joined: 3/15/2005

And what about that?

 

Roll Seaboard RISE 49 - NAMM 2016

Posted: 1/31/2016 8:24:31 PM
dewster

From: Northern NJ, USA

Joined: 2/17/2012

The demo at the end was pretty well done! 

And that was the first I've heard of MIDI MPE (http://expressiveness.org/2015/04/24/midi-specifications-for-multidimensional-polyphonic-expression-mpe).

Posted: 1/31/2016 9:36:13 PM
mpampouras

From: Epalinges, Switzerland

Joined: 3/15/2005

Yes, and an interesting list of participants...from Linn to Bitwig!

Posted: 2/1/2016 12:16:27 PM
coalport

From: Canada

Joined: 8/1/2008

rkram rote: “….I’m not sure there is a real virtuoso on the thing [Continuum] in the same sense as there is on the piano.”

Unlike the piano, the Continuum is not a musical instrument. It is strictly an interface with no native sound of its own. As such, I think it needs to be viewed as a tool, or as a means to an end. There will be people who are very skilled on it, and others who are less so, but I doubt there will ever be a “virtuoso” on the order of a Horowitz or a Perlman.

Dewster suggests putting ridges or grooves to mark the center point of the notes on the Continuum fingerboard. I think most people familiar with the neoprene surface would object to this since it would be like skating on rough ice. There’s a reason why they send out the Zamboni at half time during hockey games.

Posted: 2/2/2016 1:23:08 AM
rkram53

From: Northern NJ, USA

Joined: 7/29/2014

Not sure how you can say that with the internal sound engine. It's as much a musical instrument as any other electronic instrument. And personally I even consider a MIDI controller an instrument - the sound is just not coming from it. You need every ounce of skill you have to play a MIDI keyboard controller or wind controller or drum controller. Holy cow - half the music shop owners in the world are going to come after you with torches and pitchforks when they find out they're not selling musical instruments anymore. :-)  

The only reason we have not seen a true virtuoso on it is I think because no one has put in the time required to master it in that vein. This thing requires a different technique. Different kind of exercises for speed, etc. Different feel. It's a new thing in and of itself - but most people seem to treat it as little more than an adjunct to their keyboard. And I do believe a sightless person has just as good a shot at being a great player on it as anyone as it's very much about playing by feel in many ways as much as sight. I actually think looking at it is a bit detrimental for polyphonic playing.

And I'm totally against grooves now. The smoothness makes the instrument. I can easily see why some non-western musicians will not even want the markings. I think I've seen a couple Indian videos without them in fact - which makes perfect sense to me. I would like a little line between the adjacent "white notes though" just for when I'm looking at it (sometimes I actually don't - as you can play it rather like a theremin, well more ribbon controller, in its own pitch space by feel alone - I'm actually trying to practice playing it in the dark). 

But whatever the heck it is or isn't. It certainly is a wonderful creation.

P.S. By the way, thinking about this - and it is an interesting thought - with the same line of thinking, the organ - the king of instruments (at least the manual and bellows) is not an instrument - it's just a wind controller. So the history of playing something that doesn't really make a sound itself is rather old. Of course the combined set of manuals, bellows and pipes makes up the total instrument. Just like a Continuum, MIDI Interface and sample library makes up the instrument (if you are not considering the sound engine). I wonder what the oldest thing played that doesn't directly make a sound is?

 

Posted: 2/3/2016 2:22:02 PM
coalport

From: Canada

Joined: 8/1/2008

I make a distinction between musical devices that create a native sound of their own (either electronic or acoustic), and those that are provided with a variety of different patches designed by programmers.

 

In his book, MAURICE MARTENOT: LUTHIER DE L’ELECTRONIQUE, biographer Jean Laurendeau makes the same distinction which he goes to great lengths to explain. For Laurendeau, neither the theremin nor the ondes are synthesizers. 

 

Unfortunately, these days accepted definitions are becoming so all-inclusive that they are meaningless. There are lots of videos on the internet of “theremin” performances that are actually synthesizer patches played on a MIDI keyboard. If you challenge the musicians and point out that the sound is not a theremin, you will be told you don’t know WTF you are talking about!

 

I have had people tell me that a Black & Decker electric drill is a musical instrument, and by their definition IT IS.

 

So I guess everybody is right. 

 

 

It’s ART if you say it’s ART.

Posted: 2/3/2016 2:55:02 PM
dewster

From: Northern NJ, USA

Joined: 2/17/2012

I realize this is very subjective, but in my head I tend to classify the continuum is an "instrument" because it is a controller + integrated sound source.  (The sound source seems almost mandatory due to the limitations of MIDI.)

Digital pianos often have string, organ, and upright bass voices, and the inclusion of those voices doesn't instantly kick them out of the digital piano category - but it does tend to blur the synth category.

Bob Moog made several Theremins which were basically capacitive controllers lashed to simple synthesizers, and I suppose I still think of them as "real" Theremins even though the two functions are separated internally.

Posted: 2/8/2016 8:41:50 PM
mpampouras

From: Epalinges, Switzerland

Joined: 3/15/2005

Well talking about controllers...

Roger Linn LinnStrument - NAMM Show 2016

Posted: 2/8/2016 11:38:59 PM
rkram53

From: Northern NJ, USA

Joined: 7/29/2014

The Continuum is two, two, two mints in one (maybe more). One one hand it's an instrument in its own right with the internal sound engine. On the other it's a controller - both a MIDI controller (now supporting enhanced MIDI MPE in the new 7.5 firmware which can take better advantage of the instruments controller capabilities) and if you have the CV module, it's also a CV controller. And you can feed sound into it and control that through the AES port in the internal sound engine.

I could easily lose myself in the continuum and not appear for a year, it's so feature rich.  

Here's an interesting video talking to that Linnstrument. Like the Continuum, it can assign midi streams per finger and like the continuum works in the X, Y and Z dimensions. It also kind of gives you a little taste of what a DAW can do for you (I actually use Cubase).

https://factotumo.com/2015/09/midi-mpe-explanation-by-spec-author-geert-bevin/

This Linnstrument looks very interesting. Maybe next year. It's a true controller:

http://www.sweetwater.com/store/detail/LinnStrument

 

 

Posted: 2/9/2016 12:46:31 AM
coalport

From: Canada

Joined: 8/1/2008

rkram, have you tried TWO HANDED VOICE (preset #175) on the 7.50 updated Continuum? It is STUNNING!!

You must be logged in to post a reply. Please log in or register for a new account.