WMC gears up. Berlin clubs go green. The OP-1 is back. Eventide makes big news.

WMC industry panellists announced. The 34th edition of the Winter Music Conference is taking place in Miami from 25-28, 2019, and this year’s industry speakers have been announced, with names like Carl Cox, Erick Morillo, NGHTMRE, Nicole Moudaber, Richie Hawtin slated for panels, chats and breakout sessions. Keynotes will come from Irvine Welsh and DJ Pierre, who’ll talk all things acid house; trance star Armin Van Buuren; Mixmash Records boss Laidback Luke; platinum-selling DJ and producer Sam Feldt, who’ll speak about green philanthropy; and author of the forthcoming Team Human book, Dr. Douglas Rushkoff, who’s been named one of the “world’s ten most influential intellectuals” by MIT. There will also be panels on breaking into the industry and surviving as an indie label, daily artist panels, and a panel with Spinnin’ Records. And for badgeholders, exclusive panels on data solutions, creating an authentic brand strategy, and AFEM Presents Get Played Get Paid will be offered. There’s plenty more, however, so head to the WMC website for more info.

Berlin’s green clubs. The German techno capital is on a push to go carbon neutral by 2050, and with the help of the city’s politicians, Berlin’s cubs are leading the way. “I think Berlin clubs are trendsetters, not just in terms of music, but also in terms of lifestyle,” Green Party representative Georg Kössler told DW. The initiative will provide clubs with government-funded sustainable industry practices consultants, who will offer solutions like LED lights, reducing water consumption and installing energy-efficient cooling and heating systems. One Berlin nightclub uses the same amount of electricity in a single weekend as one household does in a year, so the changes could go a long way towards sustainability. More extreme ideas, like generating electricity from dancing, have also been put forward. To read more, head here.

Help Cooly G. After losing nearly everything in a fire, Hyperdub artist Cooly G is asking for donations to help replace items like her studio equipment, vinyl collection, books, and her children’s toys and games. The mother of two was trying to find a new house after her previous home was flooded when the fire happened. Everything she owned was in storage, and it’s unclear whether the Croydon Shurgard self-storage facility will pay for what she has lost. If you’d like to help, donate here.

No deal guide. In the case of a no-deal Brexit, the Arts Council England has published a preparation guide for arts and cultural organisations, like museums and libraries, though areas of the music industry may also be affected. Along with information on freedom of movement, the guide details the possible future loss of funding for projects under EU programmes such as Creative Europe, the European Regional Development Fund and Horizon 2020. As RA notes, London’s Village Underground and the PRS Foundations’ Keychange initiative — which seeks to address gender disparity in festival bookings — have received funding from Creative Europe. Without future funding, art projects may have to consider other forms of revenue, like commercial or philanthropic income. But there’s plenty more to consider. Read the guide here.

Music is good for you. Good news, producers. A new study from the Music For All Charity shows the positive impact of making and playing music on both the young and old. Children who play an instrument tend to have better memories, verbal and spatial abilities, and better attention skills as adults than those who don’t. And music lessons also help the elderly better ward off the effects of aging, even reducing the need for certain medications. Plainly put, making music is great for your brain, so keep it up. And to learn more about the study and the charity, and the upcoming Learn To Play Day — which offers free music lessons to people of all ages in the UK — click here.

OP-1 returns. Teenage Engineering has announced the return of its very first product, the OP-1, just in time for Valentine’s Day. The portable synth used by musicians like Jean Michel Jarre and Trent Reznor was created by the Swedish company in 2009, and was an instant success, but has been out of stock for the past year. However, the company says it was able to source a replacement AMOLED screen, and will now be able to sell the OP-1 again. Head to the Teenage Engineering website for more info.

Berlin’s newest wax haunt. Berlin is getting a new record store called Latitude, backed by popular techno club Griessmuehle. Located next to the Neukölln club on Sonnenallee 221 — formerly the home of the Record Loft — Latitude is opening this Friday with an in-store opening party from 14:00 and until midnight. Head here for more info.

Desktop happiness. Twisted Electronics has unveiled a bitesize new synth that takes its inspiration from a classic gaming console. The hapiNES 8-bit Desktop Groovebox is a multitrack chiptune synthesizer with 18 buttons, 16 pattern memory, 16 arpeggiator modes with variable speeds, and four voices, allowing for real time track creation, plus more. It’s also full of nostalgic sounds, inspired by the RP2A07, which is the sound chip found in the NES games console. And Twisted Electron also offers the L(arge) version, which adds an AB preamp, hardware MIDI and analog sync in a metal case along with the smaller version’s features. Watch a demo video below.

Public Records. Brooklyn is getting a new hi-fi listening bar, performance space, and cafe called Public Records, with bookings that include Optimo, Jan Jelinek, CCL, Call Super, Valentino Mora, Maayan Nidam, Damo Suzuki, Laraaji, Jamie Tiller, Dave Grubbs, and more. Following two years of renovation, the 233 Butler Street venue will feature three roms: a hi-fi record bar with food and drinks, a performance space featuring both live acts and vinyl-leaning DJs, and an all-day vegan café and magazine shop. Both the bar and dance space will feature custom sound systems, while rare record collectors and weekly live experimental jazz curated by Rob Reddy will be hosted in the bar. However, there’s more in store for this ambitious space. Click here for more info.

Eventide’s instant classic. Recording effects and technology company Eventide has released the Instant Phaser Mk II plug-in, digitally recreating the world’s first rackmount electronic effects processor, the Instant Phaser, which was used on recordings like Led Zeppelin’s “Kashmir.” Features of the Mk II include the ability to dial in the “age” of the phaser, which will change the sound quality in accordance with drifting values of “aging” analog components. The Mk II will also have stereo image effects, a manual mode for precise automation of the phasing effect, and an oscillator, which allows the user to modulate the phasing at a defined rate. The the Instant Phaser Mk II will be $37.00 until February 28th, when the price rises to $129.00 USD. Learn more here.  

More Eventide. Eventide has also announced Rose, a new guitar and bass effects pedal that combines a modulated digital delay line (DDL) with all-analog circuitry for mixing, filtering and feedback. Forgoing a DSP chip give Rose the advantages of digital delay with the warmth and feel of analog, delivering a wide spectrum of sounds. Rose also has six tactile knobs for mixing: feedback, depth, delay, filter, and rate; a delay multiplier, an analog low pass filter; sine, square and random modulations, and plenty more. Priced at $349, Rose is available for pre-order now, with an estimated shipping date of March 15, 2019. Head here for more info.

Crate diggin’ 2.0. Now you can dig into a world of old records to access royalty free samples from BMG with The Crate, the newest product for the Arcade loop synthesizer by Output. Arcade allows users to perform and manipulate loops with multiple effects in real time. The Crate digs into the past for royalty free loops, but Arcade has new loops and kits delivered to the plugin daily with a subscription, and users can create and use their own. You can try Arcade free for two weeks. Click here for more info, and watch a demo of The Crate below.

Help ZULI. Producer and live act ZULI has run into unfortunate circumstances and needs the help of the music community. The UIQ affiliate had nearly €3000 of gear stolen, including a Lenovo Z50-70 laptop, a Novation Launchpad, and a Novation Launch Control XL, along with his entire music collection, his Rekordbox files, and all the music he’s made since 2017 — some of which was slated to be released this year. A GoFundMe page has been set up on his behalf. Click here to donate.    

15th February, 2019

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