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It's a good idea (as far as I can tell)...

Posted by:
~Maxx 02:58 pm MST 02/15/07
In reply to: Notion video on YouTube - Wilbury 12:13 am MST 02/15/07

It seems to be a sort of MIDI-type application whereby pre-arranged (and/or pre recorded) portions of the score are triggered at particular intervals within the live performance. This alone is hardly new technology. In the past a live drummer would trigger such events with a foot pedal, or by striking a particular pad on his kit - either of which would trigger a MIDI event telling a computer (or digital device of some kind) to perform a certain task. Or (in other, more rare cases) the live drummer could be playing along with a "click track" (a fancy metronome) which would have a tempo map programmed into it for each performance. This tempo map would be a digital "road map" for each song, and would thus know exactly when to trigger a desired event (sound) without anyone having to do anything. The basics of this technology are used for all kinds of things from running the mixing board to operating the lights and pyro effects for most big rock shows.

What seems to set this Notion software apart is that they have given it its own position in the performance rather than being dictated by a computer or another band member who has other things to worry about. The argument against this type of technology has long been that it is too "robotic" sounding and too "perfect" for a live performance environment. These machines operate in sync based on a pre-determined tempo. Their ability to keep time within a song is based solely on that tempo. They do not make subtle changes based on the mood of the song, they do not improvise, they do not make mistakes. Once the machine is triggered it plays its part at the tempo that it is programmed to play it in, and it does not stop untill it is told to. And I'm sure it's easy to see how that can take alot of the feeling away from a live performance.

So having a guy sitting at a computer triggering each bar of music individually, playing along with each song as if he were a member of the orchestra, is really a long overdue concept in this age of digital music. Having said that I would assume that the guy's getting paid way too much money to sit there and tap a button in sync with the band all night.

If anyone hears any more about this software feel free to post it. I would guess that by the time Meat tours again it will be performing his parts too!


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Previous: re: Notion video on YouTube - Jsteinfan 04:41 am MST 02/16/07
Next: re: It's a good idea (as far as I can tell)... - Wilbury 05:16 pm MST 02/15/07

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