New page dedicated exclusively to the Pink Floyd Exhibition to be held in Milan in fall 2014. The first two sections added provide a general overview of the event and details about the location, a one century old dismissed factory. And, if you’re from San Francisco, a little surprise…
The page is reachable from the Echorec Bible index page, or directly from this link.
Carminati Toselli Trolley in San Francisco. Courtesy of Leo Laksi
The hometown on the Echorec will host the “PINK FLOYD EXHIBITION: THEIR MORTAL REMAINS”, a retrospective celebrating five decades of the Floyd’s work. More than 300 objects will arrive in Milan from collectors around the world and from the band members themselves.
The opening is on September 19th, 2014 and the event will run until October 19th, 2014. Location: La Fabbrica del Vapore (the Steam Factory), Milano, Italia.
Aubrey Powell, co-founder of the album cover design company Hipgnosis with Storm Thorgerson, is the creative director. Starting with Pink Floyd’s A Saucerful of Secrets in 1968, Hipgnosis created all the band album covers up to the end of the 70’s.
Stufish is also involved in the exhibition as stage designers. The company founder, Mark Fisher, in the 70’s was commissioned inflatable sculptures for the Floyd’s 1976 tour Animals. Mark was a specialist in the field, having founded his first company focussing on portable structures for entertainment (Air Structures Design) when he was still a student in architecture.
Three years later, in 1979, Mark was asked to design the Floyd show ‘The Wall’. In 1990 he continued his work with Roger Water’s ‘The Wall’ concert in Berlin, then again with the 2010/1012 ‘The Wall’ world tour.
The AudioExMachina Echorec Bible will provide extended coverage about the event and related news.
The first and only complete catalog (as of June 2012) dedicated to Binson Echorec delay units, used by, among others,the Pink Floyd on every album since 1967 “The Piper at the Gates of Down” up to 1977 “Animals”, is now online at AudioExMachina’s blog.
Years of hystorical research have been condensed in a single document (more data will be added periodically) trying to help readers to identify and compare features of every model ever built.
A comprehensive table collects info about number of magnetic heads, tone controls, tube or transistor architecture, feedback path, and more. Visit the AudioExMachina’s Echorec Bible from the main menu at the top of this page or by clicking here.
What I like most when journeying for fun is to temporarily abandon the main route to explore something that catches my attention along the track. While tape audio editing is the main topic of this multi-part post, there’s something I’d like to discuss for a moment.
We talked about stutter-editing (in part 1) and looping (in part 2), two techniques that remind the use of digital samplers. Now the question is: is there any point of contact between such different technologies as analog tape machines and digital samplers?
The answer is, yes, analog samplers. Here is a video about a drum machine based on tape loops. The device is monophonic, having a single magnetic head that the operator can manually move from one loop to another.
A more advanced device, used in albums by Beatles and Pink Floyd, is the Mellotron. This is a polyphonic device, having a magnetic head for each individual tape loop. Here is a vintage demo video presenting the Mellotron.
This video captures a maintenance procedure allowing to see the internal tape pack. Tapes are visible side by side, mounted on a frame. Each individual tape corresponds to a key on the keyboard, and to its dedicated magnetic head.
As seen in part 1 (posted here), inertia inherent to mechanical parts of a tape machine prevents seamless playback of audio fragments scattered along the tape. A solution to this problem involves physically cutting tape and joining splices to create a new sequence as required.
A similar problem, and solution, occur when trying to seamlessly repeat an audio segment multiple times, a technique called “playing a loop”. Usually a loop requires accurate alignment of its boundaries, in order to create a correct rhythmic pattern or anyway a continuous texture.
With a reel-to-reel machine, this is again a matter of razor blades and sticky tape.
Here is how to make a tape loop with analog tape, recreating in this tutorial the intro of the song “Money” from the album “The Dark Side of the Moon” (Pink Floyd, 1973).
Now back to the Sixties. Here lovely Delia Derbyshire, at the BBC Radiophonic Workshop, shows how to layer multiple loops by tapping transport buttons on the beat. Amazing.