“Hurry up and wait” would be a good description of the construction of my new studio, which I discussed back in the January newsletter. (So would “two steps forward, one step back” – except the backwards steps have been thankfully small, so far.) But it seems that a few major milestones have finally been passed, and the general contractor still thinks he’ll be done before the end of June.

In the meantime, there’s music to be made…and released! My next album – Finite Space – will be coming out early this summer (available for previewing and pre-ordering now), plus I’m lining up a few gigs – including a special free show at the Albuquerque Museum the evening of June 20, when I open for the wonderful Michael Stearns.

All this has me thinking more about how I use machines to help me realize the music in my head – including samples, which are often frowned upon by listeners and critics alike. That’s the subject I’ve decided to tackle in this newsletter’s main article.


  • featured articleHow and why I use samples, including how I view using loops recorded by others as a form of time-shifted collaboration.
  • Alias Zone updatesMy next album – Finite Space – is now available for previewing on AliasZone.com and pre-order on Bandcamp (including streaming, download, and physical CD).
  • Learning Modular updatesI visited the Moogseum last year to play with their vintage Moog modular, be on a panel with Dave Rossum, and play a gig as a fundraiser. A portion of that is now available to the public.
  • Patreon updatesProphet VS RAM waveforms, an approach to layering, correcting the sound of my current studio, and more.
  • upcoming eventsGigs at the Albuquerque Museum and Knobcon are booked; at least one more is in the works.
  • one more thing: Bjooks is creating an awesome book about the Minimoog, which is available now for pre-order at a significant discount through Kickstarter.

Alias Zone Updates

Learning Modular Eurorack Expansion Extended

My next album – Finite Space – has been mastered, and a limited edition CD is currently being replicated; the image above is the artwork for the “eco wallet” packaging. I am still settling on a release date; it will be in July sometime, hopefully aligned with a live performance to turn it into a record release party.

I’ve updated the Alias Zone website (including previews of each of the four tracks on the album); the Bandcamp pre-order page is also now live, including the album’s first track: Premonition. I’m going to be creating some bundles that include the CD including with the original artwork used as part of the cover; those who pre-order (and thank you to those who have already ordered, and been so generous – I really appreciate you) will also get something extra thrown in as a “thank you” when I ship your CDs.

If you are interested in potentially featuring the album on your program, reviewing it, and/or interviewing me, please get in touch using the Contact form at the bottom of this web page.

In the meantime, the video below is one of my live performances of Nightfall: Kyiv; a studio version of that track (with hyperacoustic flute by Richard Bugg) closes out the new album.

Learning Modular Updates

Last October, I did a mini-tour of North Carolina. The first stop was the Moogseum in Asheville, North Carolina. On the first day, I got to play with their vintage Moog modular system (with the able assistance of Geary Yelton):

During this session, I sampled a couple of the sounds I created to incorporate into my performances for that trip. The second night of my visit to Asheville, I participated in a fund raiser for the Moogseum, including Bob Moog’s daughter Michelle Moog-Koussa interviewing myself and Dave Rossum (of E-mu Systems and Rossum Electro-music) about the past, present, and future of modular synthesis. I performed a couple of sets during the evening, including the video above. Many thanks to Daniel Liston Keller for the live video switching. (Daniel has also interviewed me for his video podcast; I’ll let you know when that goes live.)

Patreon Updates

After falling quiet during March while dealing with studio construction, April saw a return to posting for me, on a variety of subjects:

The first three posts above are available to +5v and above subscribers; the latest Notes from the Studio installment is available free to everyone.

For those who are not subscribers (and those who are), I encourage you to check out the index for my Patreon channel: There’s a lot of content up there (around 500 posts so far!), and a 7-day free trial if you want to try out a subscription and access a particular post that’s not already free.

Upcoming Events

June 20, 7:00 PM – Albuquerque Museum – Albuquerque, New Mexico

I am very excited to be opening for Michael Stearns during a special free event in the Auditorium at the Albuquerque Museum. We will both be playing in quad (although we are currently going through some interesting jousting with the venue over where the rear speakers are going to placed).

From 5 PM until just before 7, members of New Mexico Control Voltage will be providing an “Ambient Electronic Soundbath” in the main gallery (#4), with two different stations playing overlapping ambient soundscape sets. Again, this event is free!

Michael and I are also looking to play at the Paradiso in Santa Fe, New Mexico sometime this summer; future details will be in the next newsletter, as well as on the Alias Zone website and Facebook page.

September 7 – Chillout Room @ Knobcon – Schaumburg Illinois

I will be one of the featured performers in the Chillout Room Saturday evening during the Knobcon convention near Chicago, Illinois. The room will be set up in quad, and I plan to develop a new set for the occasion. The Knobcon show itself is also a great hang for fellow synth-heads.

One More Thing…

I have a lot of respect for Kim Bjørn and his independent publishing company, Bjooks. He was a great partner to create Patch & Tweak with, and I respect how his books dive deep into subjects, presenting great, often not-previously-available information in a highly pleasing visual manner.

The latest Bjooks project is The MiniMoog, researched and written by JoE Silva. Many of us have read bits of the Minimoog’s history here and there, but I feel confident in saying no where is there as comprehensive of a telling of the Mini’s story as in this book, from deeply technical details to interviews with numerous artists about how the Mini literally changed their music.

Putting together a Bjooks-quality book is time consuming, and above all expensive. Kim doesn’t just download images from the internet; he sources – and pays for – the best images he can find, and often organizes special photo shoots for specific instruments or subjects. That’s why Kim has launched a Kickstarter for this book: to make sure there is enough interest in it for him to do it the way it should be done. Click here to check out the Kickstarter campaign  (it closes May 27 2024), and pre-order yourself one of the limited edition numbered copies at a great price. I have…

While busy figuring out how to promote my next album Finite Space, I already have its follow-up mostly done. It will be an interesting departure for me in that it’s mostly dark ambient without discernible sequences or beats, and has a long-time friend that many of you know playing on top of my sound-world beds. And after that, another “tribal ambient” album is also mostly finished – so look for a lot of new music from my over the next year. And I haven’t even gotten a chance to play with my new studio!

excited to be sharing my music with you –