Posts by Nikos

    I was a teenager in the 80's, so I went through the first wave of keyboard music and love it. 🙂

    It was the time of "more is more". Decadent innocence..MTV.. And ofcourse there was no fear of kitsch and hyperbole cheesiness.


    But then came Kurt Cobain and killed it all..including the bombast keyboard sounds,shred guitar and himself..

    Just because something can be done, doesn't mean it should, even in the hands of one of the greatest guitar technicians in history. I prefer him on guitar (and when he's not cramming 32 notes into every bar).


    The time has come to do it.


    Some things.. we just can't stop..

    I can't see a single reason why I would ever want to use a guitar synth when both on stage and in the studio I can grab any usb keyboard and trigger a VSTi or even internal sounds.


    I do use a Boss SY200 to layer my guitar sounds in my band, there's a few moments in the set when the synth is louder than the guitar but it's still all pads/fuzz-octave stuff to accentuate my guitar parts.


    Of course, your mileage may vary but outside of virtuoso playing, this tech is unlikely to have a significant impact on music.

    What about live?

    First of all ..the beers are always on me. Old family tradition.😉


    The "reason" why anyone would "need" a guitar as a trigger instrument is IMO very simple.


    Everyone has one. Everyone can play a few chords on guitar. I can imagine so many situation in the studio or ofcourse on stage where it would be a huge advantage to do keys stuff with your guitar rig. A band with two guitar players using these possibilities.. easy answer,think about it..

    Interesting points.


    I will try to answer also point by point.


    First of all,yes you can do bends and stuff with guitar synths. I am very happy in this regard with my triple play..thing is that almost all of the synth sounds I love and use were never "built" to be translated into string style playing. Ofcourse not. So even I can achieve results I really dig with my triple play there is always this 1% of things I cant do. For example I would go crazy if in the future some developer achieves algorithms with a guitar synth which can translate "all of it" what an electric guitar can do with a (let's say) moog lead or sax.For example pinch harmonics. How could this sound? Maybe interesting,wild,unexpected?


    We dont know. Until yet nobody has ever tried this.


    As for using a keyboard I can use ofcourse the stick/wheel for bendings/vibratos but come on..this is not the same..Also I cant replicate 100% the runs & phrasing I use on guitar.


    Anyway..this for the "technical side of things".


    So..yes "in the past" guitar synth was a niche thing. Prog rock. Right?


    But in the past we did not have a "diminished interest" in rock music. Actually rock music was the "basic thing" with all it's different kinds. Guitar,Bass,Drums ..a sax here and there,with synths things became "more diverse" and indeed a lot of prog rock stuff appeared. Niche.


    But is this the same today? I dont think so. Everything has completely changed. Kids like the sound of an guitar but it is just "one of many sounds" they grow up with. Cheap,nasty drum sounds,all forms and kinds of bass sounds,in general "leads" or "solos" are not a "important part of it" and are mostly replaced by a vocal hook or even a more hefty rap part.


    Judging by what I see,what I experience seeing and listening to what the kids hear today..they have a completely different approach to sound.


    If in the 80s heavy metal.was "extreme" and "aggressive " today kids think it is "lame" and lacks bass!Today heavy metal is a play ground for guitar players who truly to.be more like bass players with guitar skills.


    Not to mention that all the gangsta & electronic music "done the rest" in the last 20 years. This is a fact.


    Long story short electronic/synth sounds are not "niche" today. They have replaced most of what role had the traditional rock/pop instruments 1955-1990.

    They are like 70%-80% of what we hear today. Most likely this will not change. Kids will do their "melange" they will mix stuff and sounds from 1955 until today. They will hear on YT Chuck Berry and one minute later Snoop Dog.


    Dont forget that just now Kate Bush went into the charts again with a 40 years old song. Kids want it all and they can have it.


    The electric guitar may become soon another trigger tool like the midi keyboard.


    Edit


    I forgot to mention that I most often use my fav profile and "mix" a little bit of a synth lead to it. And ofcourse if you use a piano sound doing the vibrato it will sound funny. I have to turn down the mix and in general it is often a "lots of work".


    A more "intelligent" guitar synth would do this automatically?


    Stuff like that..

    Rereading my post above..did not want to sound disrespectful. I am myself one of these old lads (still with long hair getting slowly greyed out) I described above.


    But the truth is yes. ..'got tired of the "cliche rock sounds" ..getting more and more "clean" with old fender profiles with some drive/fuzz/boost enjoying more and more fusion and jazzy stuff. Anyway..


    New sounds should be part of the game. Not only the classical rock guitar stuff but what ever it is.


    In my opinion the electrical guitar is a fantastic instrument. But is needs "new horizons" (sorry for this cliche). For many young people the sound of the electric guitar is "already old" and a part "of the past".


    This is ofcourse not bad. The question is if this is enough.

    I think it will become a common place to see them in future flagship multi effect units. People will want the units to have them even if they don’t use them personally much, kind of like the Steve Vai-esque wild pitch shifting stuff that’s been common in pricey all ones the last decade aren’t used regularly by the majority of guitarists.
    The guitar will always be a popular instrument because of the things that it does uniquely well. But if one is looking to push the boundaries of non guitar sounds, a midi keyboard will always be a superior choice. This is due to the inherent limitations of the guitar: only six strings that can be played by four fingers in whatever combinations are physically possible given the limited stretch of a single human hand. (apologies to right hand tapping possibilities that advanced musicians can do) but the keyboard is superior note for note because one of your hands doesn’t need to be reserved for plucking the notes that you’re holding down with your other hand. You have 10 fingers on two hands and those two hands can be stretched 5 or more feet apart. It’s why you can teach a five-year-old to play single note melodies on a keyboard in a relatively short amount of time. Play the same thing verbatim on a guitar would take vastly more developed skill. Same goes with chords. You can show a person with no experience how to hold down GBD to play a G chord in 30 seconds and watch the same person struggle for weeks to learn how to play the first G chord without it buzzing.

    Strings have much more ways of expression.


    Vibrato & bending,doing slides..pinch harmonics.

    Imagine a guitar synth which can do all these ofcourse with certain sounds (moog/lead sounds in general) .


    It would be completely new way to see the guitar. Which is good to get more kids to this instrument. Guitar will not die as long as there is a way to sesperate it from old cliches ..some of which are graphic and just funny for the latest generations. Many kids I know just dont want to see 50-60 year old long haired (or what ever has left) dudes doing rock hero stuff on YT.

    How so? You add some definition as you raise the gain?

    This function alters the "character" of the profile.


    With some profiles if you add some "definition" you will get a little bit more "beef".


    I have a few profiles which sounded much better for leads/solos just adding some "definition" instead turning up the gain control.


    Often I combine both functions.. a little bit more gain control and a little bit more definition. In any case I believe it is worth a try because the definition function IMO is very very interesting and important for the profiler. But it does not "the same thing" to all the profiles. Hard to explain but worth a try.

    Nikos I don’t know kids who play. But I know a lot of adults though and no one has this. I’ve never heard about this being normal. But that does not mean, that it isn’t. I just highly doubt that statement. I triggered Reason with my Axon. No problem there.


    Like I stated earlier. The tech has been here for decades. It has always been a niche thing. I cannot see it suddenly become big. The Axon had all the boxes ticked. And to state that young people has no limits when mixing playing styles, leaves me with one question. Are you saying that people has not done this for 50 years?

    To be honest I dont agree. Technology was there but it was not for everyone. It was "elite" and this because it was first of all very expensive and then ofcourse you needed a lots of knowledge and time to use it. It was never instinctive and out of the guts.


    Today modern tools like the triple play are good.Better. Cheaper.Easier and most of all more "instinctive" and out of the guts.


    Guitar synths should be part of the next generation guitar modelers. For me this is out of question

    I had an Axon for a few years. Long enough for me to conclude that what is possible with a guitar as a synth controller is severely limited. You can't do a plausible imitation of piano or organ or most any sound that can be generated with a traditional keyboard. The fact that the guitar has strings is very limiting. Monophonic synth sounds can be done pretty well, but guitar synth is limited in too many ways IMO. The devil is in the details or not in the details in this case.


    YMMV

    I can do "crazy things" with my triple play..it is just big hassle and difficult doing it live (extra laptop,using just one guitar,changing presets,adjusting the mix etc)..


    It is the future. No matter what. We can discuss this issue like we did in the past but imo it is futile. The technology is already "here".


    The question if "guitar players in general need synth sounds" is also out of question for me. Young lads already have no limits. They mix everything. Genres,playing styles etc.. give them new sounds which they can trigger with their guitar and ofcourse they will use it. It is crazy to believe they would not.

    It is already mainstream. Kids are already using exclusively DAWs. With all their tools.


    Being able to trigger synth sounds in your DAW with your guitar is a very logical step.


    The next logical step will be to bring these sounds on stage without to hassle with an extra laptop or floor pedal just using your modeler and your fc.

    This will become big. I mean this whole guitar-synth-modeler-plug in thing. Fractal and Line6 will follow.. it is part of the future ..


    I hope the man who did the virus has some big surprise on this matter for all of us in the near future. He should.

    I have a different bpm now with 51 than I had with 21.. that's...for sure..


    I also believe in some "mystical relationships" between tunings,beats,keys & modes.


    But this is not "for everyone"..

    The KPA took this "back up panic" from many,many players I know. Just recently a hardcore marshall nut head friend of mine left his two "battle rigs" (as he calls his 800/plexi with marshall cabs since 30 years) at home and just took a toaster for his bands 4 week touring through all of Europe. No back up. 'Says with the KPA he does not need any..That made me think indeed..


    The KPA is a great reliable tool. Full stop.

    BTW - I have some very close friends that were in a Rainbow tribute band that has been going for 20+ years :)

    A few intros like that one brought me to music. .


    Voodoo child,burn,tarot woman and I always loved the interaction of the guitar with fat keys/synth leads. Jon lord,Tony Carey,that guy who played with malmsteen (made me to sit down and learn far beyond the sun with 16) and some others..


    Great memories and a lots if fun.

    You are all right.


    There are already solutions. Triple play,SY200 and even with the kemper right now synth leads are quite possible with our KPA.


    Thing is..


    These solutions are imo not really "fire and forget".


    The triple play has a very good tracking but still needs the midi tool to be mounted on the guitar. This sucks.


    The SY-200 is a great tool but for me it sounds often to "digital" and sits to often not well enough in the mix.


    Some warm,fat "monophonic"moog lead for start and later other additions would be the next step which should be possible with "more cpu" in the near future and then we will see what is possible with upgrades in the coming years. This is how I would love to see a KPA2.

    'friend of mine yesterday saw my post about the synths and called me.."why do you little punk insist for this synth thing?"..


    I sent him this:


    I can do this intro with the triple play but it is a mess for live (laptop and all this) and it also does not sit well in the mix.


    Mini moog leads which can be used with any guitar no matter the PUs,no matter the CPU,which can easily could be fine tuned to sit well in any kind of mix..

    That alone would make me spend like 3000-4000€ for the next Kemper without hesitation. And I am not rich.Add to this maybe some abilities to give these sounds "electric guitar like playing response" (pinch harmonics for example) and we would already be talking about "revolutionary next generation guitar modeling".


    I know a lots of people who would agree on this.


    Everything else (more fx,more I/Os ,dual amp) can be done today..just buy a second KPA.