Tag Archives: Amplitube

Motion Blur on The Loke

The Loke

A couple of these pictures appeared on ‘Hemsby Havok’ page for last month. I took a dozen or more pictures using long exposure and moving the camera around. Several retain traces of the place, a low sunset shining through a gap in the hedge at the back of the caravan site, but in the main they are almost completely abstracted. At the time I was waiting for the barbecue to settle down from fire to cooking mode whilst entertaining a bottle of Spanish beer. Now summers gone, like the fire and the beer, but at least there are the memories……

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All of the pictures are post processed in Snapseed for colour saturation and sharpness.

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I’m also including here a new song. This is called ‘The Loke’. I saw this on a street sign in the areas around Hemsby. There is something of a witchy nature to the place. The number of very large churches very close together in what are quite small villages seems to indicate an embedded guilt or need for absolution. I had a need to watch The Wicker Man & Night of the Demon when we got home. It seems a Loke is a cul-de-sac or dead end in this context but Wiktionary suggests ‘from Middle English *loke, from Old English loca (“a bar, bolt; enclosure, stronghold”), from Proto-Germanic *lukô, *lukōn (“lock, opening”), from Proto-Indo-European *lewg- (“to bend, turn”).’
Its the first piece that I’ve done that features a special guest stunt guitarist. We managed to avoid the traditional process of collaboration and its mearly fortuitous that this works. The Soundcloud link shows a subtitle of ‘Pre Reprieve’ as theres a good chance this might not be the final or only version of the track.

As with many of the other pieces this is made with iRig and Amplitube on iPad, includes Ebow and other screech making devices. It also makes more controlled use of the drum builder in GarageBand. I think its quite a step forward but maybe I’m easily pleased.

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More Holga fun & The Great Yare

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One of the ‘left overs’ from the Hemsby Havok page is a couple of rolls of Holga 120mm film. I took a roll of Kodak colour film and a roll of Ilford B/W (both out of date) with me. Unlike iPhonography its old school point and shoot with no preview or review. I very mush intended to make use of every exposure and tend part wind the frames so there are double exposures and near panoramas. After getting the film developed (or washed, a phrase I like) I get them scanned as a single strip and then chop and process them on iPad in Snapseed (with a little bit of Photoshop).

These are mainly taken on the dunes or on the beach. I’ve not added any imagery or cleaned them other than a little sharpness & contrast. They have the vagary of memory, fleeting and not entirely accurate. I still find them evocative.

This is the first set from the colour film roll. I had the view set to 16 frames so the individual frames are a little more portrait than the 12 view. Click on any of the images for full screen view.

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The second set are from the B/W film. The linear & text artefacts are from the editing process, accidental but included for continuity.

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One final addition, also a result of road trip is a musical piece. There are little roads and alleys in the are near where we stayed called ‘The Craft’ and ‘The Loke’ (bar, bolt) which to my mind have a slightly witchy and medieval connotation. For that reason this ‘song’ uses (just like the ‘Hounds of Love’) a little background noise from the brilliant movie ‘Night of the Demon’.

There are 3 or 4 basic levels of slide guitar noise used in this, all recorded one evening after the children had passed into exhausted reverie, using the CBG guitar, iRig and Amplitube. Its turned out unexpectedly very much as I’d intended.

This is ‘The Great Yare’ My advice is to play it loud.

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Ocular Cents (The Ghost Of The Horse Orbits Altair 4)

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Another piece of music reached some sort of conclusion yesterday. It’s very much a mashing up of two distinct intents. In the first instance I had been playing with the chords from Eyepennies, one of my favourite Sparklehorse songs, the other being some play time with the new Korg Gadget app on iPad.

Korg Gadget has 15 retro style synthesizers and drum machines and the ability to record loops, multitrack, and scene sequences. It can be power hungry and I have found a limit to the capability on my V2 iPad of 3 simultaneous gadgets.

Crashing guitars are made with iRig and Amplitube

Thrown in over these two elements is the Theremin recently launched by Femur Design. That was the catalyst to head into space. The Theremin was  a huge influence on soundtracks for 50s/60s/70s sci-fi movie and TV soundtracks and bought to mind one of my favourite movies from that period, The Forbidden Planet, which is referenced in the title and theme of this song. The Theremin is played ‘live’ through Amplitube. In the absence of Ableton Live this is all assembled in Garageband.

So here it is in its full 7 minute journey into the deep space twinkly droneiness.

Im quite keen to produce a video for this but I’m currently a little uncertain how to collect original source material with out warp capability. Might call Jade Rabbit for a collaboration.

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Dark(er) Globe

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Not that I want to excuse this or apologise for it, but lets just remember that I am mainly doing this for my own entertainment. Thats why most people blog, lots of lost souls standing in the woods, shouting at the trees until the nuts fall out…. or something like that.

My recent musical escapades have been really enjoyable. I like ‘making things’ and I’ve always had ambitions for sound despite my absence of innate talent or musical ability. I’ve listened to it all in sequence recently and it hangs together well, like something viscous thrown at a wall. From the outset I had hoped to include a cover version and had a short list of contenders. All easy major cords with a limited number of changes. This won hands down. There was a period in the 80’s that we played this endlessly. Poor fractured Syd Barrett in his post Floyd last hurrah before disappearing into a semi in Oxford. A casualty of the excess of 70’s like Peter Green. A unique English poet of nonsense and psychedelia.

This was made with chords I really played, recorded on my phone. I mangled the song three or four times, re-playing sections, some through Amplitube with most of it post processed in Audacity. The vocal on the original is urgent and uncertain, main is shy, languid and equally uncertain. This for me is really sticking my head over the parapet.

With the recordings now complete and only one more (possibly two) more videos to finish the album is nearly due for release. There will be an artefact to contain this nonsense. The video was filmed at Elvaston Castle & Country Park just outside Derby. Another example of the glorious & faded. Something we do well in England.

And for the purists here is the SoundCloud link. You are free to download and keep this for posterity.

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