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  • Filed under: Gear
  • 10/25/2013

This Week in Music Tech: Arturia's MicroBrute Analog Synth, Dam Drum 3, In the Studio with Mouse on Mars and BD1982, and More

After a few days of teasing the fact that a new synth was on its way, Arturia unveiled the details of its compact, 100% analog MicroBrute today. More information on the synth—along with updates on the Dam Drum 3, separate studio visits to workspaces of veteran duo Mouse and Mars and rising tunesmith BD1982, and a guide to building rough-around-the-edges house beats—can all be found in the latest This Week in Music Tech.

Today, French software and hardware developers Arturia introduced the MicroBrute, a smaller version of the company's well-received MiniBrute synth, released earlier this year. The compact, monophonic synth looks like a promising unit, featuring a 100% analog audio path, high-quality filter section, a mini patch matrix, and a built-in sequencer/arpeggiator. It appears that these little guys will begin retailing for somewhere around $350 when they hit stores next month. More details on the MicroBrute can be found here.

Veteran German duo Mouse on Mars was the latest to take on FACT TV's Against the Clock challenge, building a beat in just 10 minutes with a number of soft-synths, outboard FX, a banjo (yes, that's right, a banjo), and the pair's own iOS app. While the two producers spend most of the time speaking to each other in German, it's still easy to get the gist of what they're doing as the track gets built. And watching Andi Toma and Jan St. Werner frantically manipulate and run around the giant analog mixing desk in their immaculate studio space makes it just the more fun to take in.

After appearing in the past in very limited quantities, a new version of the Dâm-Funk-inspired drum machine, the Dam Drum 3, became available to pre-order via Stones Throw this week. The third version of the unit comes complete with a MIDI input, which adds an extra layer of compatibility to the handheld drum machine and sequencer crafted by the Austin-based Bleep Labs company. The Dam Drum 3 will begin shipping on November 26 and can currently be pre-ordered for $110; more info can be found here.

After moving back to the States from Japan (and a long list of other locations), rising producer and Diskotopia label head BD1982 has given Music Radar a tour of his new home studio, now based in New Jersey. The producer's modest space packs a lot of punch, with a small army of hardware (connected via a MIDI patchbay) and his MPC serving as the main machines in his arsenal. BD1982's complete studio tour with Music Radar can be seen here.

And lastly, Attack Magazine has added another chapter to its ongoing Beat Dissected series of articles, this time guiding readers through the process of building so-called "Rough House" drum patterns. The site's quick, step-by-step guide can be read/heard here.

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