Mayors around the country join forces to fight hacker ransoms


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Over 225 mayors across the US have backed a resolution to not pay ransoms to hackers, as reported by The New York Times. The resolution, titled “Opposing Payment To Ransomeware Attack Perpetrators,” states that the mayors stand “united against paying ransoms in the event of an IT security breach.”

The resolution came out of the annual US Conference of Mayors, which took place in Honolulu from June 28th through July 1st. According to the statement, at least 170 county, city, or state government systems have been targeted by ransomware attacks since 2013. These attacks use malware programs that render systems inoperable, with the hacker(s) usually demanding payment in the form of cryptocurrency in exchange for restoring systems.

The…

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Eric Prydz is going to DJ inside a giant glowing sphere — here’s how it was made


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Two weeks from now, Eric Prydz will stand inside a glowing sphere that’s more than two stories tall as he performs to a crowd of thousands. The world-famous DJ is set to debut his latest Eric Prydz In Concert (EPIC) show — a big and ambitious experience that draws tens of thousands of fans and gets the entire dance world talking. Every EPIC is a limited engagement that pushes the limits of how tech and music interact. This year, Prydz is pulling off the most grandiose performance to date, in the form of a giant transparent LED sphere called EPIC 6.0: Holosphere.

“Ever since we started doing EPIC,” Prydz says, “our goal has always been to try and blow people away, but in a way that they haven’t been blown away before at an electronic…

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Slate Digital’s new music software subscription service includes all its plug-ins and an online school


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Music software and hardware company Slate Digital has announced a new subscription service called the All Access Pass. The subscription unlocks over 60 plug-ins, online production lessons through the company’s new learning center Slate Academy, and more.

Slate Digital is known for its plug-ins that producers, mixers, and engineers use when making music, which includes everything from virtual drum kits to tube amp emulators. It also makes some hardware, including microphones and digital mixing consoles (under Slate Media Technology).

The All Access Pass is essentially a revised version of the Slate Everything Bundle, a subscription service the company launched in 2016. The Everything Bundle gave access to all Slate Digital plug-ins and…

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Popular audio ripping site Convert2MP3 shuts down after lawsuit


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Global recording industry organization IFPI has confirmed in a statement that popular audio ripping site Convert2MP3 is shutting down as part of a settlement from a 2017 lawsuit. Convert2MP3 allows people to download audio files from YouTube links and other sources, and according to the IFPI, had 684 million visits from around the world over the past year.

The IFPI has marked piracy as a threat to the music industry for a number of years. Its 2018 Music Consumer Insight Report said that 38 percent of people globally…

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Apple’s Logic Pro X update shows just how powerful the new Mac Pro is


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Apple has released an updated version of Logic Pro X, its professional music production software. The software is now souped up to show off the capabilities of the new Mac Pro, with improved responsiveness and a huge increase in the amount of tracks it can support in a project file.

This is a significant upgrade for Logic — it’s gone from support for 255 stereo audio tracks, 255 software instrument tracks and 255 aux channels to 1,000 for each, and now also supports 1,000 external MIDI tracks. Other DAWs already have some of these functions — Ableton supports unlimited audio and MIDI tracks, for example, and Pro Tools has 512 aux channels — but now Logic benchmarks or outpaces these DAWs in other areas. Additionally, this new version of…

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There’s now a museum dedicated to Robert Moog and synthesis called the Moogseum


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Robert Moog changed the landscape of music forever when he launched the first commercial synthesizer in the ‘60s. Since then, the Moog name has become synonymous with synthesis and iconic pieces of hardware like the Minimoog. Now, the Bob Moog Foundation has opened the Moogseum — a museum dedicated to Moog’s work and other important music devices — in Asheville, North Carolina.

The museum had its soft opening this week but will officially celebrate a grand opening on August 15th. The 1,400 square foot space features an immersive visualization dome that lets guests “step inside a circuit board” to see how electricity becomes sound, and a recreation of Bob Moog’s workbench. There are also rare theremins on display, prototype synth modules…

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Teenage Engineering’s first record label is a showcase for its delightful synths


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Swedish music hardware company Teenage Engineering has developed a cult following around their design-forward synthesizers. Now it’s expanded into another portion of the music industry and launched a record label. Naturally called Teenage Engineering Records, the company says the label only has two rules for releases: “it needs to be a good song,” and the song must use at least one Teenage Engineering instrument.

The label’s first release is “You’re In Love with Your Hair” by newcomer Swedish artist Emil Lennstrand, otherwise known as Buster. This appears to be his first release ever, and Teenage Engineering says he’s currently finishing up a bunch of songs that will be released in the near future. “You’re In Love with Your Hair” was…

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Pioneer DJ’s new beginner controller is built for streaming music and smartphone DJing


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Pioneer DJ has announced its newest controller, the DDJ-200. It’s built for beginners that are curious about DJing and puts ease of use at the forefront with an ultra-competitive price of $149. Not only does it come with built-in tutorials, it’s compatible with several music streaming services, and can pair with your smartphone, tablet, or laptop.

Easy and frictionless setup is at the heart of the DDJ-200. It can connect to any number of devices to stream music, is iOS- and Android-compatible, supports Bluetooth, works with your iTunes library, and can access Spotify Premium, Deezer, Beatport LINK, and SoundCloud Go+ through DJ-specific apps like djay, edjing Mix, rekordbox, and WeDJ.

WeDJ is Pioneer DJ’s app for mobile DJing, and so…

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This live stream plays endless death metal produced by an AI


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Over the past month, an AI called Dadabots has been endlessly generating and streaming death metal on YouTube, as spotted by Motherboard. Made by musical technologists CJ Carr and Zack Zukowski, this algorithm is only one of many death metal algorithms the duo has developed over the years, with each one trained on a single artist’s discography.

The training method for Dadabots involves feeding a sample recurrent neural network whole albums from a single artist. The albums are split up into thousands of tiny samples, and then it creates tens of thousands of iterations to develop the AI, which starts out making white noise and ultimately learns to produce more recognizable musical elements.

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Moog’s new limited edition Matriarch is a powerful analog synth


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Moog has debuted a new synth called the Matriarch, which will be built and available to play with on-site at its Moogfest in Durham, North Carolina. The Matriarch is a patchable semi-modular analog synth that follows in the footsteps of previous Moog releases, like the Mother-32 and Grandmother.

As with other synths the company has put out, Moog says the Matriarch doesn’t require any patching to make cool sounds, but if you want to dive in, there’s an array of different kinds of synthesis modules to connect together at your fingertips just above its 49 keys.

It’s got the same retro aesthetic that Moog has been leaning into as of late, not just with this series, but other synths like the Sirin (which it introduced at this year’s NAMM…

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Amazon reportedly set to launch a free music streaming tier


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Amazon is reportedly in talks to offer a free, ad-supported tier of its music service, according to a report from Billboard. Although there aren’t details about whether it will be more radio-like or on-demand, Billboard suggests this new free service will emphasize Amazon as a direct competitor to market leader Spotify.

Amazon plans to market the new option through its Echo speakers, and Billboard says that it could be available as soon as this week. The free tier will have a limited catalog of music, and Amazon reportedly obtained the licenses by offering participating labels a deal to pay per stream. The payment rate is not tied to the amount of advertising Amazon sells.

Music is a robust portion of Amazon’s business — last year a…

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The first four things to do if you want to make money in music


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Musicians have more ways to self-monetize than ever before, but all too often, it feels like that money is just out of reach. Putting out music yourself is not as hard as it used to be, but making money from that music takes a bit more work and know-how. It’s a minefield most artists still haven’t been able to navigate. The average musician still makes under $25,000 a year, with most of their money coming from live gigs.

There is no perfect guidebook on how to make oodles of cash from your music, but there are some best practices to make sure you get a return for the work you put in. Recently, The Verge hosted a panel at Winter Music Conference with music lawyer Kurosh Nasseri, Amuse CEO Diego Farias, SoundCloud artist relations manager…

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Bang & Olufsen’s new $20,000 TV has mechanical ‘wing’ speakers that move


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Bang & Olufsen has debuted its new Beovision Harmony television, sporting mechanical, rotating panel speakers that are meant to turn the TV into a sculptural object. When the screen is not in use, the TV sits low to the floor, partially obscured by the speakers. Then, when the TV is turned on, the screen lifts and the speakers fan out and down, “like a butterfly opening its wings.”

The television itself is a 77-inch LG C9 OLED screen — the same that LG sells for $6,999, although without the transforming speakers. As for the speakers, they house a three-channel, fully active DSP-based sound system. Their unique visual front pattern is made with alternating bands of oak and aluminum, and are supposed to “maximize acoustic performance.” It…

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This interactive case turns your modular synth setup into a light show


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Los Angeles-based Strange Electronic has launched a Kickstarter for a new kind of Eurorack synth module that doesn’t make or control any sound at all. Instead, it integrates full-spectrum LED lighting into a modular setup, and is meant to spice up live performances by adding a visual component.

Called Lightstorm, the product is actually comprised of two parts — the actual Eurorack module, which has multiple parameters for controlling light, and a frosted acrylic case with a power supply and built-in LEDs. The module can be bought separately if you want to hook it up to your own lighting rig, but the plug-and-play nature of using a case that can light up is incredibly appealing.

The module has ports for LED output on both the front and…

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