28 July 2009

OceanoGraphy up for Pre-Order

Last week I signed a new record contract with Groove Unlimited for my upcoming 'OceanoGraphy' album. I'm still working hard on it as we speak by the way. It is nice that Groove Unlimited is going to release my music again. (thank you Ron and Kees). The release date is set final now to October 17th 2009. It will be launched during the E-live festival in Oirshot in The Netherlands. So the album is coming real soon now. Groove Unlimited has already put the album up for pre-order in their web shop. You can be with the first persons to get it when it is release when you pre-order it. The first period it is usually only for sale directly from them anyway and only later other places will follow. Ordering from them is safe and they do deliver World Wide so don't worry about that. You can find the album on this URL:


Thanks for your support! I'll do my best to make it even better than the previous ones :)

25 July 2009

Interview about my Apollo Project

I got quite some nice reactions on my Apollo 11 track. Also by Jude Calvert-Toulmin. I met Jude through MySpace when I was just on there and was just trying to promote my music. She did my first ever interview actually back then. She liked the Apollo 11 track so much and the idea behind the upcoming album, that she did a second interview with me that she posted on her Blog. You can find it here:


The first interview we did in June of 2007 is also still available. It was also nice to read that back myself. You can find that one on this URL:


20 July 2009

40th birthday of Apollo 11 Moon Landing

Today it is exactly 40 years ago, July 20th 1969, that the Apollo 11 crew landed their moon lander on the surface of the moon. Neil Armstrong was the first human being to ever set foot on our moon. I have always felt very connected to the NASA missions connected to this event since I was born in 1969 and always related that event to my own birthday. Since I became 40 myself this year I decided to dedicate an album to these missions. I hoped to have it finished this year but unfortunately I didn't make it. I'm even working on another album that still has to be released this year. But to celebrate this event I worked on a track to honor the crew of the Apollo 11 and put it online on my website today.

You can find it here: http://www.synth.nl/Apollo

The track is not finished yet by the way and still unmastered as well, but I think it is nice for now. After I finish my OceanoGraphy album I will resume work on this album. I have already found a nice CD with original live radio broadcast recordings of all the Apollo missions. So I will replace the samples in this track later by better ones. There will be much more tracks about the other less know missions that went up to the moon. This project is very personal for me and I enjoyed working on this track a lot. I also named my current studio after this project as you have probably guessed by now by the way ;) But now I'm going back to the dolphins, sharks and whales in my virtual Ocean :) Happy 40th birthday celebration!

13 July 2009

Server Room Leak and Short Circuit

Yesterday I was playing my SY-99 in my studio when suddenly the lights went out. The studio kept on running because it is behind an UPS. I went to my server room because the power distribution for the studio is there and I smelled something burning right away. Closer inspection of the power cabinet showed that there was water running in it from above. So I switched of the power immediately and called the electrician. When opening the power cabinet we found a layer of water in it and we found the two automatic fuses in the picture on the left to be short circuiting because of the water.

We had some water downstairs before coming from the hole were the air conditioning pipes went through, so we suspected something to be wrong there. This morning the constructor came by to tear by a part of the wall. And this is what we found. The 110 mm hole that was drilled in the concreted didn't only go through the concrete but also cut through the rough of the basement. You can see the pipes running here and the black stuff you see was supposed to be the water proof layer of the roof of the basement. Clearly not water proof any more. So problem found for sure.

This afternoon the water proof roof construction was repaired again and we poored some water over it. So far no water came down so I presume this is fixed now. Tomorrow the constructor would come back to repair the wall. All in all a very stressful weekend and I hope we don't encounter problems like this anymore down there. I was happy though that everybody came by so quickly and that we located the problem so quickly. Afterwards they told me that sometimes it takes weeks or even months to find leaks like this. Now I'm going to take a little rest to get over this ;)

08 July 2009

First OceanoGraphy Artwork Impression

Hi the last weeks I have been looking for a nice picture for the cover of my upcoming album OceanoGraphy. Eventually my friend Hans came up with this picture and I asked my designer Bart Auceps to negotiate the rights of this picture with the photographer. And we came to a deal. He then made this cover from it. It is not the final version yet, but I like it a lot. I think it represents the theme of the album perfectly. And it is both abstract, artistic and still to the point. I'm still talking to the WWF (World Wildlife Fund) about the correct use of their logo. As I told you before they are officially endorsing this project and part of my revenue from this CD will be directly donated to the WWF.

Here is the preliminary back of the CD. Also still not final. There are even some mistakes still on it, but it will give you a nice idea. You can also see the track names on there already. They are still not all final either though. But most of them won't change I guess. We are still working on the rest of the artwork but I thought it was nice to share it with you in this stage. And I'll also use these preliminary images on my website. The planned release of this album is only a few months ahead and I have still a lot of work to do. So I hope I'll make the deadline. If I want to release on the 17th of October as planned I'll have to finish my work by the end of September. Well as promised I'll update you on the progress. Well I hope you like the artwork so far :)

100,000 MySpace Friends!

I just approved my 100,000 th MySpace friend request! Isn't that amazing? Some other figures: 1,486 people are actively subscribed to my blog, 365,461 times my profile was viewed, in total 268,084 song plays in my MySpace player and 8,918 people left a positive comment on my music. I'm also on some other networking sites but MySpace is somehow the best running for me. Also most CD's I sell are going to people who got in touch with my music on MySpace. It is my number one marketing tool. I do spent a lot of time answering mail also on there, but it is actually quite nice to get feedback this way. Well now I just hope all MySpace friends order a CD somewhere in the future ;) Well if you haven't found my page yet go to http://www.myspace.com/synthnl and add me as a friend there. Looking forward to see you.

04 July 2009

Beisbroek Planetarium Project by Synth.nl

I was asked to produce some new music for a Planetarium Show that is going to be featured in the Beisbroek Observatory in Brugge (B) the coming 6 months. The show had is premiere on the 3th of July 2009. The total show lasts 45 minutes but they needed music for the first 13:30 minutes of the show. So I made this music especially for this project. The music had to be in the background and therefore I couldn't use much beats or leads. I tried to create more atmospherically and spacey music for this project that would fit nicely under the voice over and also with the video. Unfortunately I didn't get the video so I had to work with the voice over track only. Actually this is my first documentary and I liked doing it. I hope to do more projects like this in the future.

I will release the music I made somewhere in the future by the way. I made four tracks in total called Eclipse, Meteor, Hubble and Nebula. They are mixed together to form the soundtrack for this show. The video is projected on a special dome by the projector you see in the picture on the right. It is able to create a nice image of how the sky looks like at a certain place on Earth at a certain time. Together with some video they produce a very nice image over your head that is 360 degrees around you. Just like you would be outside. I haven't seen the show myself, but I'm looking forward to it. And of course you can go and see the show yourself as well if you like. Here is more information on the Beisbroek Observatory:


You should ask them when this show is playing though. I don't know that myself at the moment.

I did place a copy of the audio track on my own website so you can listen to it. And even though the voice over is in Dutch I'm sure you will get the picture if you don't understand Dutch. I used a picture of the 'Whale Galaxy' with kind permission of NASA to stay in the theme of my current OceanoGraphy Project by the way. You can find it here:


Please do enjoy it and let me know what you think of it :)

More OceanoGraphy SFX and Percussion Sounds

Last week I made a lot more sound effects and also some percussion sounds for my upcoming OceanoGraphy album. This time I used both an oscillator and filter of the Anywhere Instruments Semtex as a sound source. I made a nice patch using the LFO's of the Semtex itself and the LFO'sof the Red Square and Cwejman S1 to modulate the Oscillator, FM, LFO speeds etc. In the end the machine was generating weird sounds on its own. I left it running for an hour while recorded the output and later I cut out the parts that I liked. Very funny way to do this. Usually I think of the sound upfront, but then I end up with pretty much the same results always. Which is nice to have recognizable sounds, but the weird stuff adds to the atmosphere a lot.

Yesterday I spent the whole day cutting them all lose, saving them., categorizing and finally giving them a name. That last part is actually also the hardest part, thinking of a name for a sound effect so that I can find it back later. It was a long job as well. I started at 10 :00 and was done by 18:00, but I actually ended up with 93 percussion sounds and 384 sound effects. So the result was worth it. I have enough now for a couple of future productions I guess. In the picture you see a part of the listing for the sound effects and the names I gave them. But there is lots more. When I'm finalizing my tracks later on I will search for appropriate ones and add some effects on them like delay and reverb or maybe even some filters to make them sound really spacy :)

Power Upgrade

Recently I wanted to switch everything on at the same time in my studio and found out that it didn't fit into the 16 Ampere group we made for the studio. It was just a bit over 16 Amp I guess. Switching of a few machines made it fit again. So yesterday my electrician upgraded the group for my studio to 25 Ampere. Now it fits just fine. I will also have to upgrade my UPS now though. I get lots of questions about the power usage in my studio by the way. Some people think I have a nuclear power plant next to my studio. Normally I never have everything switched on at the same time. Only what I use. Normally I use about 8 Ampere when I work in my studio. That is equivalent to 1840 Watt. That is a lot less than your washing machine I guess ;) So it really isn't that bad. When everything is on. I pull just a bit over 16 Ampere that is 3680 Watt. So actually our washing machine and dryer together use a lot more power than my whole studio for your idea ;)