Bob Moog’s Birthday – Fun Facts, How to Get the Moog Sound!

It seems like all you have to do is change the course of modern music forever, and Google will put one of their best ‘doodles’ on their homepage for you on your birthday. Continue Reading

Free Unique Percussion, Morse Code for iOS, New Maschine Expansion

We’ve been on the hunt again, and for this week’s Around the Web we’ve found you a couple of free gems as well as news of a brand new expansion for Maschine from Native Instruments.

Icebreaker Audio’s Akebono

First up, an interesting an unique set of samples from Icebreaker Audio: the Akebono. The Akebono is a rare Japanese suitcase instrument that has some great sounding taiko percussion, chimes, and really wild sounding vocal ‘yo’s and ‘ow’s that we can hear sounding amazing in the new wave of house, juke, bass music and more.

It’s a free download from Icebreaker – if you have Battery 3 you can load up pre-made kits, but the wav files are provided too. In fact while you’re there you can pick up a few other free and unique sample packs!


Next we’ve got something that’s perhaps a little left-field, but interesting nonetheless. iToneMaker is a free app for iOS that will turn any text into Morse code; if you have a hankering for some covert ops in your music, this could be perfect. There’s plenty of ways to effect the tone, and you can get some pretty musical sounding bleeps out of it even without focusing on getting recognisable code. When you’re done you can export to the web, where you can save an mp3 or even an iPhone ringtone.

Get it here free!

Maschine Platinum Bounce

Maschine’s Expansion series keeps on going, and the main thing that the format has going for it is the way that if you have Maschine, all the sounds slip into the library like a hand in a glove. Platinum Bounce is pretty much perfectly timed in terms of sounds, with trap music stretching to booty tech and encompassing everything from new deep house to juke and footwork styles.

At €49 it’s not the cheapest pack you’ll ever buy but the quality of NI Expansions combined with the convenience for Maschine users could just be worth it – take a look and listen here. Let us know what you think – will you pay for this kind of convenience?

That’s all for this week – make sure to Like our Facebook page and join up to our club to get more regular deals and free stuff!

Maschine Mikro and iMaschine

Native Instruments Announce Maschine Mikro and iMaschine

We saw one of these coming, but not the other. NI have just announced their latest new hardware: Maschine Mikro. Maschine Mikro is a miniature version of Maschine, which retains full sized pads but appears to augment the original’s functionality with dual colour LEDs, judging by the blue glow in the promo pics, and a single screen.

Maschine Mikro could be something special

It looks like it could be perfect for one of the use cases Maschine is increasingly moving towards – a hands on way to augment your DAW experience. What with Maschine 1.7′s Komplete 8 integration and the fact that it still has the best direct sampling function on any software, Maschine Mikro could be something special, especially considering its $399/€349 price tag, which includes the large Maschine library and software as well as the controller. We’ll find out, and definitely be making a video for it, in the very near future.

It didn’t take a genius to guess Maschine Mikro was on the horizon when NI dropped Kore, but we were a little surprised with iMaschine! In the spirit of other companies who’ve created studio in a box software – Akai’s Synthstudio and the various Korg offerings come to mind – iMaschine is a mini studio with a mini price, and the ability to load projects into the full version of Maschine. It’s a shame it’s iPhone/iPod Touch only, with no native iPad version, but maybe going full sized would be a little too close to the actual Maschine for comfort. It might not be the most exciting of the two announcements for existing computer musicians, but it could act as the gateway drug for a whole heap of those of you reading who haven’t already bought in to the world of production yet…

Both products are out on the 1st of October – Native Instruments have some extras… Oh, and here’s pad virtuoso Jeremy Ellis giving Mikro what for!

IK Multimedia iRig MIDI

IK Multimedia Announce iRig MIDI

Devices attempting to solidify the music production capable status of iPad, iPhone, and iPod are trickling onto the market.

iRig MIDI plugs directly into the iDevice’s interface socket and enables MIDI in, out, and thru, as well as a USB connection for power

We’ve got an Alesis io4 in testing at the moment – review to follow this week – and IK Multimedia have just announced their iRig MIDI, a small, convenient, and low cost device that plugs directly into the iDevice’s interface socket and enables MIDI in, out, and thru, as well as a USB connection for power. 5 pin DIN breakout cables are hooked up via 3.5mm sockets to keep the size of the unit to a minimum, and the package also promises to come with a special iOS version of IK’s Sampletank with 1GB of samples. With no firm release date yet, the iRig MIDI promises that it’s coming soon, and at a not unreasonable price of $69.99USD/€54.99… We’ll be sure to give you the low down when we get one for testing.


Apogee Announce Mike

Hot off the heels of their recent JAM announcement, Apogee have unleashed another new product – the adorably named Mike, the USB microphone. Finer technical details are thin on the ground for now, but Mike promises to deliver Apogee’s PureDIGITAL technology for professional quality recording quality to iPhone, iPad and Mac, all via its diminutive 4.5″ frame.

Mike promises to deliver Apogee’s PureDIGITAL technology for professional quality recording quality to iPhone, iPad and Mac

Mike looks like it could be the ideal tool for field recording, podcasting, and no nonsense multi purpose recording with its plug and play design and iOS ready connectivity. Tech specs and price are yet to be unveiled, but if JAM is an indication of the price/performance ratio that Apogee are aiming for with their ultra portable range then then Mike could be a must have for the on-the-move recordist…



Apogee Announce JAM

Apogee make some gorgeous audio interfaces. From the studio level I/O and quality of the Symphony series to the refined, minimalist features of the ONE and Duet, their A/D converters are some of the crispest on the market. Until now, though, they’ve commanded a premium that’s placed them out of reach for some.

we’re reaching the level of technology where professional level recordings can be made anywhere

Enter JAM – a sleek single channel audio interface featuring Apogee PureDIGITAL converters, designed not only for Mac but for iPhone and iPad, too. Better still, it’s $99USD. This is potentially a very exciting release, especially when twinned with Apple’s impending iPad 2 (in fact, there’s a JAM in the premiere video for iPad 2); we’re reaching the level of technology where professional level recordings can be made anywhere, affordably.

The JAM has been designed for electric guitar and bass, but it will of course accept any similar input source. One thing is it tied to, however, is Apple. Mac, iPhone, and iPad are supported, but in grand Apogee tradition Windows is left out in the cold. JAM launches on the 31st of March, and I’ll be getting my hands on one to test the quality in due course…

Rodney P - Freestyle App

Rodney P Freestyle App Promo

A stamp of approval by Rodney P is surely enough for any aspiring poet or lyricist to check out this iPhone app’s latest 2.0 release.

“I got this new book of rhymes I adapt/cus since I got this freestyle app it’s been a rap”

Riddim killa demonstrates the app’s capabilities over a few beats and sends his vocal over to Skitz… at £1.19 it could be a worthwhile purchase if you’ve ever needed to record your voice whilst simultaneously reading from the screen and getting accompaniment from some beats…

Freestyle App is available from the iTunes store

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