Hot on the heels of the successful collaboration project that resulted in an epic song and the Better Than Epic band, I’ve published a new solo album called Future Tense. This collection of songs covers a variety of styles from ambient to techno to jazz.
Future Tense as a title is a bit of a play on words, and reflects thoughts (and feelings) I had about the current state of digital technology. But it’s not all doom and gloom, the album covers a variety of moods. What follows are some descriptions and highlights about this work.
The Future is Now
The song called “Voicebot 00101010” stems from the glut of technology I see everywhere. George Orwell and other visionaries were correct in their assumptions and in their warnings. The future is now, and unless we get a good handle on it, bad things are likely to happen because of misused technology. (I’m thinking Terminator). And who can say which class or type of robot will achieve sentience first? What of the lowly forgotten voicebots?
In a video for this song I wanted an image of something that lies between techno and organic. I made what I am calling a live-animation music video (Link below and on the Video page). Parts of the video could be called video lightpainting, that was achieved using glow sticks, light toys, and a black background. Some of the resulting footage was pretty good, a lot of bits didn’t work at all, but within some of the segments I found more…such as the fish image that appers early on, at about 20-25 seconds in from the beginning.
The opening tune, Inner Mind, is quite different in tone, scope and size than the other songs. This is probably due to the mixture of apps that I used for the sounds. An Alchemy Synth part, some Garage Band Strings, original Auxy Drums (sounds are no longer available), and a few re.
I have a video to accompany this song and that will be posted on YouTube…soon…I think.
Apps that Inspire
When working on a new piece of music, I’ve found that many of my favorite apps can provide a mood or feeling for me as a starting point. I am usually guided by sounds, but I realize that an app’s look and feel (the GUI or should I say the UX, or user experience), can also flavor my approach. I’ve embraced this idea which has helped to expand my music boundaries.
Korg’s Gadget inspired me to explore a different pallet of sonic textures and many of the results have been more towards an ambient vibe, which I really enjoyed making. Two songs on the album, “Knot E” and “Fields of Lavender” were made entirely in Gadget where I made liberal use of Korg’s iM1 app, which works inside of Gadget as a sound source.
BeatHawk is from the well respected provider of desktop software, UVI. This is an all-in-one studio production app with 16 available tracks and tons of high quality sounds adapted from their desktop product line. This app’s unique GUI and workflow took some getting used to, but gradually I came around and I have come to really enjoy firing it up and getting into it. Several of Beathawk’s sound packs are geared towards genres like hip-hop, West Coast, urban Glitch, etc. that’s not familiar territory for me, so I was eager to dig in and explore. As a result, many of the songs on Future Tense contain some modern, glitchy and gritty type sounds.
Seven Chills is a jazz number that came out of Beatwave, a free universal app. This is a pattern sequencer with four tracks, surprisingly good sound packs and many cool effects. The Jazz instrument sounds in the app caught my attention immediately upon hearing them. I like how this turned out, so I think I should revisit that setup again and see what happens.
This album and the videos are the culmination of a big creative year for me. It’s hard to describe (and difficult to recall) all the good things that happened during 2015. From attending the South-by-Southwest Music Confrence to working on Bring Back My SynthMaster Love; it was truly a year that could only be described as Better Than Epic.
Be seeing you
— Bourne 05Jan16
Stream or purchase the Album on Bandcamp: