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  • Filed under: Gear
  • 04/05/2013

This Week in Music Tech: Giorgio Moroder, Kyle Hall, Thefft, Launchpad S, Roland's RC-505, the SubPac, and More

A grab bag of videos capturing a production tutorial from Kate Simko, Kyle Hall and Thefft in the midst of their beatmaking process, and an interview with disco legend Giorgio Moroder popped up on our radar this week along with a few fresh looks at intriguing gear developments from Novation, Roland, and others. The lastest edition of our weekly gear and production news wrap-up gathers them all in one convenient place for uninterrupted viewing and potential drooling.

This week, Novation announced that it would release an updated version of its popular Launchpad grid controllers later this month for a street price of $169. The Launchpad S unit adds some new key features—including a much brighter LED set, faster refresh times, and—most important of all—class compliance, which will allow the Launchpad S to be used with any computer, most production softwares, and even the iPad.

Roland unveiled a new tabletop loopstation this week, the RC-505. While most of its marketing seems to highlight the unit's usefulness for beatboxers, we imagine that the five channels, bevy of FX, MIDI funtionailty, and all of the other impressive looping capabilities it provides may prove equally as useful to those beatmakers who prefer the hardware touch.

Native Instruments shared a new video showing off the capabilites of its Traktor DJ app with gear-obsessed mixmaster DJ Shiftee at the helm. The musical offerings may not blow XLR8R readers out of the water, but the video does find the man utilizing the app's cue points and looping functionality in some rather creative ways.

Although there is only one day left for its Kickstarter campaign, the intriguing SubPac caught our attention this week. Ostensibly a subwoofer that sits on a chair against one's back, the SubPac is toted as a new way to experience low frequencies that are felt rather than heard in the home or studio. The product's fundraising goal has already been met, meaning that personal SubPacs will be in production soon. The idea is certainly intriguing, though, at this point, the jury seems to still be out as to whether this will have a place in electronic music production, or rather is something more suited for your mall's Bridgestone store.

Last week, FACT TV shared the first episode of its new Against the Clock series, which featured xxxy attempting to craft a tune in merely 10 minutes. This week added another episode, with UK producer Thefft taking on the same challenge this time around.

In anticipation of his upcoming debut LP, Boat Party, Detroit producer/DJ Kyle Hall shared a video of himself building a beat from—of all things—David Banner's "Like a Pimp." Challenging himself to do so in under 30 minutes, Hall uploaded an edited version of his attempt to take on the task, tweaking various hardware pieces and continually laughing at what he came up with along the way.

Veteran techno producer and former Ghostly associate Kate Simko recently led a masterclass session at London's Point Blank institue, focusing on production tecniques within Logic—the highlights from which have been collected and shared via the 11-minute video above.

And lastly, the Creators Project shared a new video earlier this week of a rare video interview with disco pioneer and all-around synth/dance music genius Giorgio Moroder. During the illuminating piece, he discussed his roots as a proudcer, the early days of disco, and his experience collaborating with Daft Punk on the French duo's forthcoming Random Accesss Memories album.

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