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A Look Inside The Moog Sub 37

Markus Fuller is an electronics expert who loves taking things (specially keyboard synths!) apart to see how they work, and shares them on his YouTube channel. His most recent video shows how a Moog Sub 37 looks inside! This is a great video for Moog fans, after all the Sub 37 is a new classic and if you want to know a bit more about it, just watch this great video!


Watch: Adjustable Microtonal Guitar

Microtonal guitar

Classical guitars are some of the most traditional guitar models you’ll find, usually with a design that’s been pretty much unchanged for over a century. But a new kind of truly innovative classical guitar has been invented, and it’ll blow your mind!

The Microtonal guitar was was designed by Tolgahan Çoğulu in 2008, and funded as a scientific research project at Istanbul. It an innovative instrument that enables the guitarist to play all kinds of microtonal music such as microtonal folk music like makam music of Turkey, Indian music, Balinese music, Breton music or tunings like just intonation, meantone, Pythagorean, well temperament.

Microtonal guitar

All the frets on the fretboard are movable along the channels under each string. Any number of frets can be inserted into or removed from the fretboard. "Microtones" can be usally achieved by any guitarist in many different ways, such as bending strings, slide or retuning to a microtone. But this guitar does it in an entirely new way, watch the video:

How To Create a Mad Max-Inspired Flame-Throwing Ukulele

Some guitarists do love their pyrotechnics! After all, wasn’t Jimi Hendrix setting his Fender Stratocaster on fire in the sixties, one of his most iconic moments? Earlier this year, when "Mad Max: Fury Road" opened on our cinemas, one particular scene caught many guitarists’ attention: the one with the flame-throwing guitarist!

Mad Max flame throwing guitarist

Well, no doubt some people were wondering how to make a Mad Max-style flame-throwing guitar, so it was just a matter of time until someone (in America, of course…) had the idea to try and create their own version. The result is the one and only flame-throwing ukulele! Yeah, looks kinda fun… and extremely stupid and dangerous! Mind you, it could be useful when you’re making that Summer BBQ…

Watch and enjoy this video… but DON’T TRY THIS AT HOME!!!


Backstage with Hans Zimmer - The Documentary

Hans Zimmer Revealed

Last years’ Hans Zimmer performances at The Apollo in London were a rare opportunity for UK fans to enjoy the popular, Oscar-winning composer’s music in a live environment. Fans had the chance to listen to some of his career highlights such as the music for Inception, Batman Trilogy and Sherlock Holmes.

Now, this short behind-the-scenes documentary sheds a new light on the event. A must-watch for any Hans Zimmer fan!

Want to find out more about Hans Zimmer’s equipment?

Junkie XL & The Drums of Mad Max

One of the most striking features on the new Mad Max - Fury Road film is Junkie XL’s powerful soundtrack. The respected Dutch multi-instrumentalist, composer, producer, and engineer. On this video, he reveals how he created the drum parts for the soundtrack, using his customized Native Instruments Kontakt sampler.

In this video he shows how he programmed them, and talks about velocity, higher and lower octaves and a bunch of other drum related topics. Enjoy!

Listen! The Rolling Stones’ “Brown Sugar” feat. Eric Clapton!

“Brown Sugar” is one of the best-known Rolling Stones hits, and also features one of the most memorable guitar riffs ever.
This version, recorded in 1970, was never made available before, and features Eric Clapton playing some mean slide guitar. It was was recorded during an “impromptu performance” at a “birthday party for Keith Richards”.

Novation Nocturn Demo

The Novation Nocturn is the world’s first small-format, intelligent plug-in controller. It’s also Novation’s most affordable hardware controller, at just £49! Nocturn unleashes the full potential of all your favourite instruments and effects. Featuring the latest Automap Universal 2.0 software, exclusive to Novation controllers, Nocturn provides automatic, instant and intelligent control of all automatable plug-ins within every major sequencer, including Pro Tools.

Here’s a great demo, showing the Nocturn controlling all the parameters of an ABL2 Audiorealism Bassline 2 in Logic Audio.

A Look Inside A Fender Guitar Amp

Ever wondered what’s inside your guitar amp? And we mean - each single bit! Well, us neither, but what the guys at Popular Mechanics did is still quite a fascinating watch for any guitarist out there! This is how the heart of rock’n'roll looks like - inside out!

Here’s a look at all the components that make up a Fender ‘65 Princeton Reverb amp (click image to view larger sized):

Fender Amp components

1. Cabinet: The box that holds everything. This one is made of pine.

2. Main Circuit Board: Connects all the amp’s components, including the vibrato circuit, which varies the current in the power tubes to temporarily lower the power and create "vibrato." (Technically this is "tremolo," but Fender confused the terms in the 1950s and it stuck).

3. Skirted Knobs: Sadly, these only go to 10.

4. 5AR4 Rectifier Tube: Converts AC electricity from the power transformer to DC. Rectifier tubes lose power when subjected to a lot of current—which tends to happen when a guitar is played hard and loud. This sag causes audio to break up, a trademark of the tube-amp sound.

5. 6V6GT Power Tubes: The last section the signal passes through before the speaker, these crank up the audio signal.

6. Preamp Tubes: Increase the amplitude of the audio signal from the guitar and send it to circuits that introduce effects like reverb and tremolo.

7. Power Transformer: Converts the 120 volts of power from the wall socket to a higher AC voltage and sends it to the rectifier tubes.

8. Ten-Inch Jensen C10R Speaker: The transducer that converts the electric audio signal into airborne vibrations.

9 Foot Switch: Because a guitarist generally has both hands occupied, this is used to trigger the reverb or tremolo effects.

10 Reverb Tank: A metal box containing four springs. As the audio signal enters, it is converted into mechanical action on the springs. Differences in the springs’ length and stiffness cause sound to exit the tank at different times, creating reverb.

11 Isolation Bag: A sheath for the reverb tank that protects the springs from vibrations that don’t come from the guitar.

Gibson Unveils World’s Most Valuable Guitar

Gibson Brands have unveiled, last Friday 20th March, that which is being considered the "Most Valuable Guitar In The World": the Diamond SG "Eden of Coronet" guitar, which has been valued at 2 million Dollars.

The guitar, which features 400 diamonds in 1.6 kilos of 18 carat gold, was produced by a team of 68 people, in a total of 700 work days. The guitar is the inaugural collaboration between world-class jewelry designer Aaron Shum, founder of CORONET® and celebrated musician and designer Mark Lui.

The showpiece was first revealed at Hall 1 of Baselworld 2015, Switzerland and is estimated to be worth USD$2 million. Launched a few months after Fender’s own Most expensive guitar this Diamond SG already has the backing of The Guinness World records, who declared it the “Most Valuable Guitar” in the World.

Chairman and CEO of Gibson Brands, Henry Juszkiewicz stated, “The masterpiece is a joint effort of three distinct brands. The creativity comes from the process of blending ideas and cultures from different industries, which further solidifies Gibson beyond just a guitar brand. All along we’ve been striving to expand our business to different sectors of the consumer market and ‘Eden of CORONET®’ is definitely an important milestone for what we target to achieve.”

The "Eden of Coronet" will be going on tour to selected cities in China.

Gibson Eden of Coronet diamond SG

Of course, this guitar is probably meant more a a work of art than as a musical instrument. Most guitarists would still prefer a far more affordable Wine Red SG, it’s safe to say…

Roland Releases ProMars Plug-Out Soft Synth for Aira

Roland has announced the latest plug-out synth for the AIRA System-1, and their synthesizer of choice is the legendary and mega rare ProMars!  This latest Plug-Out soft synth is a complete reproduction of the classic two-oscillator ProMars synthesizer from 1979, using Roland’s latest ACB technology to flawlessly recreate the finer details of the original analogue circuitry - including the rather fine VCF. The ProMars joins the SH-101 and SH-2 SYSTEM-1 PLUG-OUTS, so if you love the fat, warm vintage synth sound, you can start building your dream collection.

The ProMars Compuphonic was unique largely in part due to its introduction of microprocessor control, hence the term, "Compuphonic." It used an Intel 8048 processor to control the all-analog VCOs, VCAs, and VCFs. This also allowed it to store patches, making it one of the early few analog synthesizers that had patch memory.

The preset sounds include Bass, String, Clavi, Piano, Voice, Trombone, Sax, Trumpet, Synth I and Synth II. A very standard and well laid out set of knobs, sliders and edit controls give you the power to create some really cool sounds.

Designed as a partner to the polyphonic Jupiter-4, the ProMars is often considered a monophonic version of the Jupiter 4.  But while the JUPITER-4 had one VCO and one sub-OSC per voice, the PROMARS had two of each. The pitch of the two VCOs could be slightly detuned to produce a unison chorus effect, and a sub-OSC was provided on each VCO. Able to produce sounds similar to a four-VCO synthesizer, the PROMARS sounded positively huge , and is practically the definition of big, fat synth tone. While not as well known as the JUPITER-4, the thick sound and “compu-memory” function that allowed sounds to be stored and recalled made it a highly regarded instrument with a unique place among the classic Roland monosynths.

It has been used by Vangelis, Spandau Ballet, Add N To (X), Jethro Tull, and Depeche Mode.

Here’s a demo of the original ProMars synth:

With the new PROMARS PLUG-OUT Synthesizer, the sound of this rare, vintage instrument is perfectly reproduced with Analog Circuit Behavior (ACB) technology. ACB faithfully captures the sound and feel of our most revered classics, using original design specs, and a detailed, part-by-part analysis of each analog circuit. While the sound and behavior is reproduced with total accuracy, we couldn’t help but improve a few things in this new version. The VCOs have increased range settings, the LFO has a “Random” waveform setting, and the Noise and and Pulse Width sections have full range control of those parameters. And like our other PLUG-OUT synths, the PROMARS has great-sounding effects and an advanced arpeggiator section.

ProMars PLUG-OUT Overview

  • Precise recreation of the classic Roland ProMars synth from 1979
  • Fat basses, edgy leads and punchy percussive sounds
  • Works within your DAW or standalone on your System-1 synth
  • Seamless DAW integration for Mac/Windows/AU/VSTi
  • Bonus features for SYSTEM-1 users including reverb, delay and bit crusher effects
  • Transfer sounds back and forth between the DAW and SYSTEM-1
  • Use the SYSTEM-1 as a high-quality audio/MIDI interface

The World’s Most Expensive Guitar - by Fender

Could this new Fender Pine Cone Stratocaster be the most expensive guitar in the world? Showcased last month at NAMM Show, this very special strat is made of the finest materials available, plus 550 diamonds, silver and gold. It could be yours if you got a million dollars to spare - this price tag makes it the most expensive guitar in the world today.

Fender Pine Cone Strat - the world's most expensive guitar?

With an exclusive design by Yuriy Shishkov, it featurs a blue hand-stained “multi-composite” finish that was specially invented for this particular guitar to recreate the “egg-like” appearance.

The guitar’s hardware was hand engraved; the knobs and switch tip were custom designed at the Fender Custom Shop and crowned with diamonds.

In addition, the “Fender” logo on the headstock is made of 2mm gold plated solid silver; the fingerboard comes complete with inlaid diamonds and 10 feet of 18 karat gold ribbon wire inlay, and is finished with a gold-plated nut:

Details with diamonds, silver and gold

Diamonds, silver and gold

550 high-grade diamonds are hand-embedded into the body to make them level with its surface. Fingerboard inlays, side dots and a carved headstock “belt” are also crowned with the spectacular jewels.

Each Pine Cone “scale” is gilded with fine silver and 18-karat gold after being traced and hand carved from a 3-D original egg image projected onto the instrument.

Shishkov hand-inlaid 10 feet of 18-karat gold wire trellis into the fingerboard. The hand-engraved hardware is also gold-plated, including custom knobs milled from scratch and adorned with diamonds.

The guitar’s designer, Yuriy Shishkov, explained why he chose this particular, extravagant design: "I thought that the timeless, simple yet elegant pattern design of a Fabergé Pine Cone Easter egg would look beautiful on the Stratocaster body. The guitar’s curves and flowing shape perfectly fit the rounded profile of the Faberge masterpiece. The goal was to make a very clean and vibrant tribute to old-world craftsmanship."

Finely crafted details

The “old stock” pickups were hand-wound by legendary Fender Custom Shop pickup winder, Abigail Ybarra, and feature “encapsulated” pickup mounting, a never before seen technique that eliminates additional routing and leaves more “real estate” surface on the guitar’s body for additional artwork.

The “Pine Cone” Stratocaster will be accommodated with an authentic limited edition Fabergé Easter “Pine Cone Egg”.

Both the guitar and the egg have matching serial numbers (0074). Like the original antique egg, it has a surprise miniature “Elephant” inside. In addition, the egg has been signed by Maison Tatiana Fabergé.

The guitar comes complete with a custom carrying case, a hand-tooled blue leather matching design custom strap and lighted display case.

The world’s most expensive guitar?

The truth is… yes and no! This new Fender Pine Cone Stratocaster is indeed the most expensive brand new guitar for sale, today. But a few used guitars have been valued at higher prices:

Bob Marley’s Custom Made Washburn 22: Between $1.2m and $2m

Bob Marley's Washburn 22

This guitar is listed as a "National Asset" of the Jamaican government, and only one of a handful of guitars Bob Marley has ever owned.

Jimi Hendrix’s Woodstock Fender Stratocaster: $1.3 to $2m

Jimi Hendrix Woodstock Stratocaster

Paul Allen, co-founder of Microsoft, is said to have paid up to 2-million dollars for the iconic white Fender Stratocaster played by Jimi Hendrix at the Woodstock festival in 1969. It now rests at the Experience Music Project (EMP) museum in Seattle, founded by Allen. If sold today, many believe this guitar would be even more valuable…

Reach Out for Asia Fender Stratocaster: $2.7m - $3.7m

Reach out fro Asia Fender Stratocaster

The world’s most expensive guitar is still a Stratocaster, after the other strat, Eric Clapton’s ‘Blackie’. This guitar was sold at an auction in Doha, Qatar on November 16th, 2005, to raise funds for tsunami victims in Asia.

The guitar was signed by several rock musicians to benefit a tsunami charity, ‘Reach out to Asia’. Co-ordinated by Bryan Adams, it is signed by Eric Clapton, Mick Jagger, Keith Richards, Brian May, Jimmy Page, David Gilmour, Jeff Beck, Pete Townsend, Mark Knopfler, Ray Davis, Liam Gallagher, Ronnie Wood, Tony Iommi, Angus & Malcolm Young, Paul McCartney, Sting, Ritchie Blackmore, Def Leppard, and Bryan Adams himself.It was initially bought by Qatar’s royal family for $1 million and then donated back to the Asia Program, bringing in $2.7 million USD.

The guitar has generated a total of $3.7 million USD for charity, making it the most expensive guitar yet.The event was conducted by Sotheby’s Henry Wyndham, who said, "I have auctioned many items for charity in my life but never have I witnessed the levels we achieved tonight. This will stay in my memory for a very long time indeed." at the more recent auction, whose attendees included US Former President Bill Clinton.

Is the Seaboard Grand The Musical Instrument of The Future?

Seaboard Grand

The story of the Seaboard Grand started in 2009, when a student from the London Royal College of Arts, Roland Lamb, decided to create a piano that would behave differently usual ones: on a piano / keyboard, each note exists "separetaly", unlike on a wind or stringed instrument, where the player can create a much wider range of sounds.

“Sound on a piano is very pixelated, in separate discrete elements, and if you tie all those together it can feel continuous,” Lamb said. “But other instruments, like a violin, are high resolution, because the sound is continuous and changing.”

You can play a note on a piano, and it may soudn different according to how strong you press the keys, and you can also use a pedal for added vibrato or sustain, but Lamb wanted to create a keyboard where the notes could blend seamlessly, an instrument that would also be much more sensitive to the nuances the human hand is capable of. The result, the Seaboard Grand, is an instrument that looks partly-familiar, partly-odd, and certainly very "Futuristic". Could it be showing us the way of how musical instruments could / should behave? Could it be… the Future of musical instruments?

Watch the clips and decide for yourself!

The Seaboard Grand doesn’t have "keys" but a black silicone surface that align neatly and ripple and undulate across the surface. It has a range of sensors carefully engineered to respond to pressure and hold time. They connect to the sound engine, so that each note can be manually varied in ways that other piano keys can’t.

Roli, the company that builds the Seaboard, has 40 engineers working on improving the interface, and they believe there’s a market for the instrument, and Oscar and Grammy award winning musicians such as A. R. Rhaman and Hans Zimmer have already used the instrument.

Zimmer said: “Having the Seaboard in front of me is inspiring. It has a sensual touch, which feels intuitive and very human. The Seaboard shows us how to get beyond the boundaries of the keyboard, a technology that was invented hundreds of years ago. Many people have tried and failed to do this; Roland Lamb and his team are actually much closer than anyone else has ever come to doing so, and thereby establishing a new, truly expressive digital instrument.”

5 Reasons To Get Excited by Jimmy Page Live Comeback

Jimmy Page, one of our favourite guitar heroes (of course!) has recently announced he’s planning to return to the stages later this year, and is "warming up on the touchlines" ahead of those gigs, as he says he needs to get "match fit" first.

Jimmy Page plays Cricket

Here’s 5 reasons why we should be very, very excited by Jimmy Page’s live return

1) You’ll be able to see the guitar legend, live!

Jimmy Page live in 2009

Jimmy Page is, as we all know, one of the three legendary guitar heroes (alongside Eric Clapton and Jeff Beck) who redefined the instrument in the sixties and went on to influence generations to this day. But, unlike Clapton and Beck, Page doesn’t play live as often, so this is a rare opportunity not to be missed! After all, he’s not getting any younger, so his live appearances will become even more scarcer in the future…

2) He’ll play Led Zeppelin songs

Well, of course he will! Even if Robert Plant probably won’t be singing them, no doubt it’ll be awesome! Jimmy Page playing "Whole Lotta Love" or "Black Dog" live could be one of the highlights of the year for anyone who cares about guitar! After all, Page still "got it"!

3) He’ll even play older, Yardbirds-era songs

Page said he would "play material that spanned everything from my recording career right back to my very, very early days with The Yardbirds" so that means you could be in the first audience since 1968 to hear Page playing something like proto-Led Zep song "Think About It", live!

4) He’ll play new, unheard of material

Jimmy Page ARP synth

Jimmy Page is more than a great guitar hero. He’s also a great producer and creative composer, who introduced names such as Bert Jansch and Davy Graham to a wider audience, experimented with Moog and ARP synthesizers, and whose recording techniques have inspired and fascinated many, as our old Jimmy Page recording secrets article shows. So it’ll be great to see what he’s up to at the moment, and hear his new music!

5) He’ll showcase some new talents

Page has revealed he’s putting a band together, which may include names we’re not familiar with. Does it mean he’ll be playing with old session musician pros, or maybe fresh new blood to give it an edge? Looks like it won’t be anything like his last new band, The Firm, in the Eighties…

Jimmy Page The Firm

And, who knows! Maybe Robert Plant will get excited by Page’s comeback, too, and, who knows what could happen next!

Chvrches Playing Live @ Moog Sound Lab

Chvrches Playing Live @ Moog Sound Lab


We first took a gander at Chvrches gear when they were breaking in 2013 and it was clear right from the very start that analogue synths were going to play a big part in their sound. With an EP, full album and countless gigs under their belt since then it’s no surprise to see them so at home in the Moog Sound Lab. There’s no “press play and go” happening here, Chvrches have learned how to use hardware synths and controllers to truly perform.

Giant Roland TR-808 Created, Using Real Instruments

The Roland TR-808 drum-machine is truly one of the best-loved pieces of musical gear, ever! Since it was introduced in the 1980’s, it has inspired generations of musicians, from Marvin Gaye and Talking Heads to 808 State and many, countless others. And its sounds continue to inspired modern musicians, as the success of the new Roland Aira TR-8 shows.

Now, electronic music wizard Moritz Simon Geist has decided to pay homage to the TR-808 in a very creative and unusual way - by creating a giant TR-808 using real musical instruments!

Moritz, who’s in a band called Science Fiction Children, said:

“MR-808 is the first drum robot that reproduces the drum sounds of the 80s - in the real world. The robot installation MR-808 is a replica of the famous 1980s electronic drum machine TR-808 – with robots playing the drum sounds! I (Moritz Simon Geist) have been playing electronic music for several years now, and at some place I was bored of the electronic music production process. With binary logic, everything is possible.

“So I decided to go back to the roots of sound generation – the physical sound generation – but combine it with the electronic music structure we like so much. I liked the idea so much, that I couldn’t stop building my own drum robots, and ended up replacing all the electronic sounds of a whole drum computer, placed in a 3,3 x 1,7m² case. I am very proud to present the “MR-808” – a mechanic replica of the famous 1980s electronic drum machine TR-808!”

The result is quite interesting and sounds good, but… perhaps a bit too big for your music room, ins’t it?

Maybe better to just stick to your Aira TR8, then, folks!

Watch: Electro-Harmonix Little Big Muff Bass Guitar Demo

The Electro-Harmonix Big Muff is one of the most popular fx pedal ever. Its vintage fuzz sound has been adopted by some of the best and most famous guitarists ever. Several acts as diverse as U2, Jack White and Black Keys use one.

But it’s also good to remember that bassists have much to enjoy in a Big Muff (and any of its different versions): the Big Muff big, fat, dirty sound works particularly well with a bass guitar, and is ideal for some cool "gritty" tones.

This recent demo is a great example, and if you don’t already own a Big Muff… what are you waiting for???

Radiohead’s Ed O’Brien Talks Fender

Radiohead’s Ed O’Brien Talks Fender


Interesting chat with Ed, Fender talked with him about starting out and his continued use of the Strat. It was his first guitar in the 80’s and has stayed with him through every Radiohead album, it’s the “benchmark” in his own words. While Ed is renowned for using a lot of effects to shape his sound the Strat gives him the sustain, dynamics, versatility and comfort that he needs to explore new sonic territory.

Recently Ed’s main amp has become the Vibro King, after 20 years without changing it’s become his exclusive “go to” amplifier. Then there’s his FX, no surprises here with lots of experimentation and always trying out new stomp boxes, from analogue boutique to big brand digital. Check out one of his most recent pedalboard pics below.


Ed Radiohead Pedals

Akai Rhythm Wolf In The Studio

Akai Rhythm Wolf In The Studio

It recently arrived at Dolphin HQ and we’ve had all kinds of fun playing with the Wolf. As pointed out in the video the nature of sound design has changed, more and more producers are creating their sounds from scratch rather than samples. That’s easy to do with the Akai Rhythm Wolf thanks to all key parameters being available for hands on control. Of course it also has the ability to connect to other MIDI/DAW gear for modern flexibility as well.

Designer Makes The World’s First LEGO Record Player!

Lego record player - The Planet

It seems anything can be made out of LEGO pieces! The latest, very creative project, is this fully-functional record player made by Korean designer Hayarobi. The record player was dubbed "The Planet" and was made using over 2000 pieces of LEGO. Only the cartridge wasn’t a LEGO part.

This record player is powered by the LEGO Power Function Battery Box and, as you can see in the video below, actually plays proper records! This is not a toy… it just looks like one:

LEGO parts were used in a very creative way - for instance, little LEGO tyres were used as part of the tone arm, to help distributing weight.

This is no ordinary hi-fi… this is LEGO-fi!

More pics:

Lego turntable tone arms

Lego turntable

Lego Turntable in full glory

Joe Bonamassa And His Favourite MXR Pedals

Joe Bonamassa And His Favourite MXR Pedals

The son of a guitar shop owner Joe managed to get his hands on classic MXR pedals from an early age. It was when he first saw Robin Trower using a Stereo Chorus for his lush, wide sounds that the penny really dropped. Add in your dirt box of choice and the possibilities start to become intriguing, the sound of so much rock in two simple boxes.


Get Joe’s Signature Dunlop And MXR Effects Together In One Bundle

Orange Amplification Sponsors Classic Rock Roll of Honour in LA

For the fifth year running, Orange Amplification sponsored the Classic Rock Roll of Honour awards, which was hosted by Grammy Award winner and member of the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, Sammy Hagar. The 2014 edition wast at the prestigious Avalon in Hollywood, California.

Black Sabbath at the Classic Rock awards

The star-studded event was attended by rock royalty including Black Sabbath, Scott Weiland, Brian May and culminated with ZZ Top’s Billy Gibbons presenting the Orange Amplification sponsored Living Legend award to Rock and Roll Hall of Fame inductee and icon Gregg Allman.

Orange ambassadors Rival Sons kicked off the evening with a live performance followed by Glenn Hughes’ new supergroup California Breed who played an acoustic set during the interval. Glenn also featured in a performance at the end of the show with the supergroup Kings Of Chaos – including Sammy Hagar, Billy Gibbons and Joe Elliott.

Orange Amplification had a Crush Pro 120 Combo at the awards, which was signed by many famous attending artists. This will be auctioned shortly to raise funds for Little Kids Rock and more details on how to bid for this special amp will be revealed on http://www.orangeamps.com/.

The winners announced on the night were:

  • Living Legend (sponsored by Orange Amplification): Gregg Allman
  • Inspiration (sponsored by Global Merchandise): The Doors
  • Band Of The Year (sponsored by Universal Records): Queen + Adam Lambert
  • Film Of The Year (sponsored by AXS.TV): Metallica – Through The Never
  • Album Of The Year (sponsored by MixRadio): Wilko Johnson & Roger Daltrey – Going Back Home
  • Classic Album (sponsored by Eagle Rock): Ozzy Osbourne – Blizzard Of Ozz
  • Outstanding Contribution (sponsored by CitiBank): Jeff Lynne
  • Reissue Of The Year (sponsored by The Great Frog): Led Zeppelin I, II, III Deluxe Editions
  • Maestro: Joe Perry
  • Metal Guru: Dave Mustaine
  • The Bluesman (sponsored by The Blues Magazine): Eric Burdon
  • The VIP (sponsored by Sunset Marquis Hotel, Restaurant, Spa): Sharon Osbourne
  • Best New Band: The Cadillac Three

For photos of the event, go to Orange Facebook Page


Pink Floyd Shares New ‘Endless River’ Track, ‘Allons-y (1)’ - Listen!

Pink Floyd Endless River Album Cover

Pink Floyd have just shared a new track called ‘Allons-y (1)’, taken from the hotly-anticipated, forthcoming album ‘Endless River’, their first in 20 years! The track sounds like classic Pink Floyd, and David Gilmour’s tone is simply unmistakable (for Gilmour fans, check our David Gilmour Gear Guide to find out how to get some of his guitar tones!)

‘Endless River’ has already broken a record - it’s the most pre-ordered album on Amazon, ever!

According to recent interviews, Pink Floyd is unlikely to tour, and this is said to be their last ever album.

The Endless River’ tracklisting is:

  • ‘Things Left Unsaid’
  • ‘It’s What We Do’
  • ‘Ebb And Flow’
  • ‘Sum’
  • ‘Skins’
  • ‘Unsung’
  • ‘Anisina’
  • ‘The Lost Art Of Conversation’
  • ‘On Noodle Street’
  • ‘Night Light’
  • ‘Allons-y (1)’
  • ‘Autumn’68’
  • ‘Allons-y (2)’
  • ‘Talkin’ Hawkin’‘
  • ‘Calling’
  • ‘Eyes To Pearls’
  • ‘Surfacing’
  • ‘Louder Than Words’

Genelec 8351A Monitor

Genelec 8351A Monitor System

Genelec 8351A Monitor System

From the drivers to the SAM controls everything in the 8351A monitor system is designed and manufactured in-house by Genelec in Finland. Groundbreaking new technology and an uncompromising approach has brought the worlds of electronics, mechanical design and signal processing closer together than ever before. Delivering a speaker that has incredible sound in any environment and will suit a range of applications from studios to post production.


Genelec 8351A Monitor Pair

New Demo: How To Use Electro-Harmonix Clockworks with Korg Monotribe and Volca Keys

The Electro-Harmonix Clockworks Rhythm Generator / syntehsizer is a faithful reissue of the classic pedal made in the 1970s, which is very rare and sold for hundreds of pounds on Ebay - if you’re lucky enough to find one! Thankfully, the reissue allows a new generation of musicians to discover this fantastic piece of gear, without the need to spend too much money!

The Clockworks can be used as a master clock for sequencers and drum machines, and to trigger electronic percussion products like the EHX Crash Pad classic drum synth. the best thing, is that it is a perfect accessory for popular new synths, such as the Korg Monotribe and Korg Volca Keys.

Clockworks doesn’t create sound on its own. It generates pulses to trigger other devices and can set the tempo for a drum machine or sequencer like EHX’s 8 Step Program.

Quick Specs

  • Works as a master clock for sequencers and drum machines
  • Generates pulses to trigger devices like electronic percussion products
  • Connect up to four devices to the four separate clock channels driven from the same master clock. Creating polyrhythms is fun and easy
  • Master clock can be generated internally by the Clockworks or come from an outside source
  • Fully analog
  • Supplied with an EHX 18VDC/500mA AC Adapter

The original Electro-Harmonix CLOCKWORKS Rhythm Generator/ Synthesizer circa 1978 has become something of a cult classic commanding upwards of £790 at online auctions.

For more info visit: Electro-Harmonix Clockworks Rhythm Generator / syntehsizer product page.

Gibson Overview of New Les Paul 2015 Models

Once again, Gibson seeks to innovate the market, and the new 2015 models have many unique features including the new G-Force robot tuners, Zero fret nut and upgraded parts. Gibson’s expert luthier Jim De Cola talks about the many new changes that make Gibson’s 2015 batch so special.

And don’t forget to check Gibson Guitar Models for 2015 on our website! Enjoy!

Blackstar Teasing Something New

Blackstar Teasing Something New

We’d expect nothing less than great tone from the Dons Of Distortion at Blackstar. What’s surprising is how dinky the amp seems, we’ve already seen portability with the ID:Core range but it looks like you’ll be able to pop this one in your backpack.

Keep an eye on our Facebook or Blackstar’s site for more details as they emerge.

Watch: Introducing the Pioneer HDJ-C70 Professional DJ Headphones

The new Pioneer HDJ-C70 DJ Headphones deliver a new standard of quality: They are packed with high-quality audio components to deliver a superb, true sound across the frequencies, even at high volumes.

The lightweight headphones are built for comfort in the booth, and feature a flexible headband and rotatable housings to support every style of monitoring. An innovative sound-isolation chamber, inherited from the HDJ-1500s, eliminates background noise to enable accurate monitoring in even the liveliest of clubs.

The HDJ-C70 on-ear monitoring headphones will be in stock very soon, order now!

Watch: Trailer for ‘808’, New Film About Roland TR-808 Drum-Machine

When Roland released their Aira TR-8 Rhythm Performer, they were bang on the money: the Roland Aira TR-8 brings back the classic sounds of the famous Roland TR-808 Drum-Machine, the most legendary of drum-machines. So legendary, in fact, that now there’s even a whole new documentary dedicated to the TR-808, an instrument that was used by such a diverse range of artists as Talking Heads, Afrika Bambaataa, Marvin Gaye, Beastie Boys, Damon Albarn, Phil Collins, Diplo, New Order, Fatboy Slim and many others.

The new film, called simply ‘808’, is set to hit cinemas soon, and a soundtrack album will also be available. The documentary, directed by Alexander Dunn , features interviews with many TR-808 users from over the years, including Pharrell Williams, Rick Rubin, Goldie, 2Many DJs and Questlove.

The documentary will also answer a question that has puzzled many musicians over the years: Why was the Roland TR-808 discontinued so quickly, at the height of its success and influence? Roland founder Ikutaro "Mr. K" Kakehashi is interviewed in the film, to reveal why!

Today, the Roland TR-808 is a very rare, and much sought-after piece of gear, and that’s why the recent release of the new Roland Aira TR-8 Rhythm Performer has been so welcome, as it perfectly replicates the 808 sound.

Komplete New Synth Guide

Komplete New Synth Guide

If you’ve only just got your hands on Komplete 10 and aren’t sure where to get stuck in first or are considering buying Native’s flagship software package it’s well worth checking out Dubspot’s guide to the awesome new Reaktor synths Kontour, Polyplex and Rounds.

While they’ve long been known for creating gold standard samplers, synths, effects and DJ tools Native are constantly innovating with both software, hardware and crucially integrating the two in a way that’s really musical. So it’s nice to see someone really dig in on Kontrol, Maschine and the inspiring new toys that make Komplete both versatile and innovative.

John 5 on the Waza Craft SD-1W

The new Boss Waza craft pedals should be landing soon, and as this new video featuring Rob Zombie’s guitarist John 5 shows, guitar players all over have a very good reason to be excited about these new pedals!

In the video, John 5 talks to BOSS about getting his signature guitar tone using the Boss Waza Craft SD-1W Super OverDrive pedal. And it sounds just great… check it out!

TC-Helicon Switch-6 Foot Controller for VoiceLive 3 and VoiceLive Touch 2

TC-Helicon have just released the SWITCH-6 FOOT CONTROLLER, compatible with VoiceLive 3 and VoiceLive Touch 2. It’s very useful, because with its six footswitches, it makes these devices even more usable, helping the onstage performer, especially.

The six footswitches can be customized to control a multitude of functions, which will let you loop, toggle individual effects, change presets, engage HIT, or even use it as a guitar pedalboard; and more! Create your own favorite control scheme, or use the preprogrammed setups on your unit.

No matter what setup you choose, Switch-6 offers a handy shortcut to getting the sounds you want, when you want them and the durable design means that it won’t quit before you do.

Main Features

  • Six individual footswitches for remote control of programmable functions, e.g. Preset Up/Down, Loop/Rec, Hit, Tap Tempo, Effects On/Off/Momentary, Guitar FX, Boost and similar (consult the manual or the Switch-6 setup menu screen on your unit for exact options)
  • Heavy-duty metal construction designed for gigging
  • Works with VoiceLive Touch 2 and VoiceLive 3
  • Includes TRS cable

Benjamin Booker Rocks Out With Epiphone Riviera P93

Benjamin Booker is a new name on the scene, and started the year touring with Jack White, opening up his Lazaretto Tour. Now he’s on his own headline jaunt in his native USA. His trademark guitar is the Epiphone Riviera Custom P93 semi-acoustic, which has been a very popular model since it’s release… but he’s the first high-profile player we’ve seen so far playing one!

Well done, mr. Booker! He’s got a great taste in guitars, of course, and by the sound of it, his musical credentials are fine, too! Watch this live performance from last month, where he showcases his talents and put the Riviera to good use!

Akai Professional AFX and AMX Controllers for Serato DJ

The new Akai AMX and AFX DJ controllers let you put hands-on control at the center of your Serato DJ setup, via USB connection. They include a host of features that’ll make sure you get the most out of your Serato DJ software.

They’ll be shipping in September. Visit the Akai AMX Serato DJ Controller or the Akai AFX Serato DJ Controller product pages for more details and to PRE-ORDER.

AFX Features:

● Expands audio command control of Serato DJ; FX, loops, cue points and more

● Serato Flip-capable -

● Includes Serato Flip and Back Pack FX Expansion Packs, a $49 value

● 4 decks of control over a single USB connection

● 9 touch-activated knobs for groundbreaking effects tweaking and EQ kills

● 8 velocity-sensitive, backlit pads with RGB feedback

● 10 pad modes for triggering hot cues, loops and slices

● Powered by a single USB connection

AMX Features:

● Mixing surface with 24-bit/96 kHz audio interface for Serato DJ

● Plug and play with Serato DJ (included) - no upgrade purchase required

● 2 sets of phono/line inputs for Serato DJ timecode signals such as DVS & HID (DVS

Expansion Pack sold separately)

● 9 touch-activated knobs for cutting-edge EQ kills and Filter sweeps

● Pro-grade, adjustable mini innoFADERTM crossfader

● Powered by a single USB connection

Kate Bush Comeback Gig After 35 Years - A Huge Success!

Last night marked the return of Kate Bush to the stages - 35 years since she last performed live! The 10 dates at the Hammersmith Apollo in London sold out in a flash, and her return was greeted by everyone was a huge success.

Bush was a pioneer of 80’s music, being one of the first artists to use the legendary Fairlight CMI Sampling Synthesizer, on her classic Hounds of Love album. A whole generation of fans (well, two or even three by now!) never got round to seeing her live, so these 2014 gigs are already one of the great highlights of the year, in music.

Artist Highlight: Flo Mounier talks about Roland TM-2

Check out this recent video from Roland, where Flo Mounier, from the extreme metal band Cryptopsy, talks about how he incorporates the Roland TM-2 Drum Trigger Module and other Roland gear into his hybrid drum kit. The TM-2 is a great new addition to any drummer who wondered how to mix electronic and acoustic drum sounds into their performance, in an easy way. This compact, palm-sized module is really something…

View Roland TM-2 Drum Trigger Module product page for more info.

Get The Iconic SH-101 Sounds with Roland System-1!

One of the many great things about the new Roland Aira System 1 Plug Out Synthesiser, is the fact it comes with the SH-101 Plug-Out software synth, which is not for sale and is only available via download coupon when you buy the System-1.

The SH-101 is considered one of the best and most iconic classic synths ever. It was made in the early 80’s and has been used by several notable artists, such as: 808 State, Aphex Twin, LCD Soundsystem, Blur, Daft Punk, Eurythmics, Portishead, Devo, Crystal Castles, The Prodigy, Jean Michel Jarre and many, many others!

The Roland System-1 was made for performance, which means that after you download the plug-out, you can, at the touch of a button turn it into a perfect replica of the SH-101 synth, and take it to the stage - no computer required.

For further details, visit the Roland Aira System 1 Plug Out Synthesiser product page.

Launch Control XL: The Ultimate Hands-on Controller for Ableton Live

The new Novation Launch Control XL  is the ultimate controller for Ableton Live, and is now available from Dolphin Music. With its 24 knobs, 16 buttons and 8 faders which integrate seamlessly with Live, you’ll have total hands-on control!

Check out Ivan Corraliza, aka. ill Factor (Timbaland, Nelly Furtado, Kelly Rowland), using one alongside his Novation 25 SL MkII. He controls everything in Ableton without ever touching his mouse or looking up at his screen.

Marshall Headphones On The Road - Watch the New Episode

Ahead of their set at Reading & Leeds Festival 2014, why not watch the Marshall Headphones ‘On The Road’ episode featuring Queens Of The Stone Age? This is a quite a fun series showing a guy’s search for the last remains of true rock’n'roll…


The first episode of the Marshall Headphones On the Road documentary about the brave men, and some women, who make the shows happen—the roadies. Jesse goes to The Wiltern theatre in LA to meet legendary soundman Hutch as he works on a special performance by Queens of the Stone Age. He also talk sto Josh Homme and Troy Van Leeuwen from the band about the band/roadie relationship and why Hutch is essentially a member of QOTSA

Trunk Records Releases EMS VCS3 Synth Emulator

Cool record label Trunk Records has associated with EMS to release the first ever VCS3 Synth app for iPad. Fans of vintage synthesizer tones such as the ones heard on The Who’s ‘Won’t Get Fooled Again’ will be delighted…

VCS3 app screenshot

VCS3 app screenshot

VCS3 app screenshot

This app should work even better if you got a controller for iPad!

Trunk Records is a London-based record label specialized in digging out old, obscure records for their releases. Some of their best releases are recordings from the dawn of electronic and synthesizer music, such as the works of Delia Derbyshire.


The VCS3 was created in 1969 by Peter Zinovieff’s EMS company. The electronics were largely designed by David Cockerell and the machine’s distinctive visual appearance was the work of electronic composer Tristram Cary. The VCS3 was more or less the first portable commercially available synthesizer—portable in the sense that the VCS 3 was housed entirely in a small, wooden case.

The VCS3 was quite popular among progressive rock bands and was used on recordings by The Alan Parsons Project, Jean Michel Jarre, Hawkwind, Brian Eno (with Roxy Music), King Crimson, The Who, Gong, and Pink Floyd, among many others. Well-known examples of its use are on The Who track "Won’t Get Fooled Again" (as an external sound processor, in this case with Pete Townshend running the signal of a Lowrey Organ through the VCS3’s filter and low frequency oscillators) on Who’s Next. Pink Floyd’s "On the Run" (from The Dark Side of the Moon) made use of its oscillators, filter and noise generator, as well as the sequencer. Their song Welcome to the Machine also used the VCS3. The bassy throb at the beginning of the recording formed the foundation of the song, with the other parts being recorded in response. The VCS3 was also a staple at the BBC’s Radiophonic Workshop, and was a regular (and most frightening) sound generator for the Dr Who TV series. Many of the monsters and atmosheres created for the show came directly from deep within the VCS3.


The VCS3 has three oscillators (in reality, the first 2 oscillators are normal oscillators and the 3rd an LFO or Low Frequency Oscillator), a noise generator, two input amplifiers, a ring modulator, a 18dB/octave (pre-1974) or 24dB/octave (after 1974) voltage controlled low pass filter (VCF), a trapezoid envelope generator, joy-stick controller, voltage controlled spring reverb unit and 2 stereo output amplifiers. Unlike most modular synthesizer systems which use cables to link components together, the VCS3 uses a distinctive patch board matrix into which pins are inserted in order to connect its components together.

Although the VCS3 is often used for generating sound effects due to lack of built-in keyboard, there were external keyboard controllers for melodic play. The DK1 in 1969 was an early velocity sensitive monophonic keyboard for VCS3 with an extra VCO and VCA. Later it was extended for duophonic play, as DK2, in 1972. Also in 1972, Synthi AKS was released, and its digital sequencer with a touch-sensitive flat keyboard, KS sequencer, and its mechanical keyboard version, DKS, were also released.

Download it from iTunes

All That Dittos Is Gold

All That Dittos Is Gold

We’ve been enjoying the Ditto looper since it was released last year. In fact it’s pretty much become an essential in my gig bag, alongside picks, capos, slides and electric tape. I wouldn’t be quite as care free with this snazzy little number though, maybe keep it on the mantelpiece and make sure it gets a good polish every now and then.


A limited edition with all the same capabilities as the standard Ditto Looper this gold edition makes for a cool addition to any guitarists rig. At that size and this price it won’t make too big a dent in your wallet or on your board.

Fancy a different diminutive device? There’s still time to get a free Spark Booster Mini pedal with TC Electronic’s Mini Tone Print Pedals.

Numark NV DJ Controller

Numark NV DJ Controller

By Hugh McKenna

There’s been a gap in the market for a truly dedicated DJ controller that can untether DJ’s from the laptop screen. Numark and Serato have worked together to develop the NV controller for just this purpose. With dual screens, pads and touch activated controls the NV is a complete DJ solution and one clever piece of gear. Numark have also teamed up with Toolroom records to deliver sample content for spicing up your performance.


Numark Serato NV Controller

Carry Your Synth With Style

Carry Your Synth With Style

Novation wants to help you get your gear from studio to stage quickly and easily without any breakage. So if you buy an Impulse controller, SL controller or any synth will get a free bag worth up to £49.99!

The products that you’ll get a FREE Novation bag with:

• Impulse 25, 49 and 61 MIDI controllers
• SL MK II 25, 49 and 61 MIDI controllers
• ALL of the synth range, including the Bass Station 2, Mininova and Ultranova

This offer is available until stock last so grab ‘em whilst you can!

Free Novation midi controller bag
Free Novation synth bag

20syl - Kodama (official music video) from 20syl on Vimeo.

A History Of Electronic Music Production In One Video

A History Of Electronic Music Production In One Video

By Hugh McKenna

One seriously clever and classy video from Kodama. We pretty much want all the vintage gear from this vid, of course you can grab a Novation Launchpad in a range of shapes and sizes.

Hail A Cab! Marshall’s Concept Car


Hail A Cab! Marshall’s Concept Car

By Hugh McKenna

Marshall Concept Car

Probably the best British/Italian automotive collaboration since Michael Caine blew our blooming doors off. Gives a whole new meaning to ‘Marshall Cab’, this concept car is a collaboration with Alfa Romeo and features the iconic amp companies stylings and a JVM205H head running two 12 inch 75w speakers installed in the boot. The amp is run on a separate battery and the seats are upholstered with the same materials Marshall uses for it’s amps.

While the car isn’t likely to go into production any time soon and retro fitting an amp into your car might be tricky, we’re sure plenty of music nerds will be considering the modification below.

Marshall Car Interior

Yep, that’s a Shure microphone featuring as a gear stick. Reckon we might break out the tool box and sacrifice an SM58 to make this modification ourselves.

Five Guitar Heroes On How They Got Started


Five Guitar Heroes On How They Got Started

By Hugh McKenna

Some guitars are intrinsically linked to certain guitarists, as Slash says “you’re either a Les Paul guy or a Strat guy.” And the man with the hat can’t quite keep the derision out of his voice as he says the ‘S word’ and that shows just how much the Les Paul means to him. Both Slash and Joe Bonamassa site Led Zep as a major influence in choosing the Gibson original.


They didn’t all start out with these vintage American made works of art though, Hank Marvin first got a banjo and Slash had a Classical Acoustic with a single string (get he still managed to make it sing though).

The BBC has built up an incredible archive of interviews with great guitarists, acoustic, electric and everything in between. Check out their full range of interviews here.

Richard Hawley loves his Gibson 335.

Hank Marvin on what the Fender Stratocaster means to him.

Joe Bonamassa tells us why the ‘59 Les Paul is special, really special.

Jimmy Page talks to Simon Mayo.

Page and a couple of other guitar heroes talk about what strings they use…

Rotherham College helps its students produce a radio station

Rotherham College helps its students produce a radio station

The Vocal Booth at Rotherham College of Arts and Technology is the home of the Visual and Performing Arts Departments ‘Academy Radio’.

Using a state of the art Sonifex mixing console and Genysis broadcast software, this student-run radio station broadcasts 24/7 over the College intranet and is regularly updated with new shows and content being produced continually.

The Vocal Booth of choice for the College is from the Platinum Series and offers space for a presenter and two guests. The Vocal Booth has provided students with the opportunity to work in a dedicated space, the likes of which couldn’t be achieved using standard teaching spaces.

Students recording 'Academy Radio' in the Vocal Booth

Digitech Drop Tune Pedal

New Product Alert! Digitech Drop Pedal

New Product Alert! Digitech Drop Pedal

This morning Digitech have announced a brand new effects pedal, the Drop. Dedicated to giving you those big down tuned sounds that have been made famous by the likes of Jack White. You can adjust it in semi-tone increments down to -7 and then 9 and a full octave after that. Digitech are boasting a clever polyphonic detection system so chords and more complex passages should be dealt with nicely. The foot switch doesn’t seem to just be latching either, with a momentary mode for those fancy trilling “Morello Moments”. The Drop looks pretty cool, no word on a price as yet.

Play For LA Shure Guitar Competition

Shure are offering amateur guitarists huge prizes in return for their guitar skills.

First place will win a 3 day trip to LA California, an admission ticket for NAMM 2015 Show, a Fender 60th Anniversary Commemorative Stratocaster (worth £1139) and a Shure GLX-D16 Wireless guitar system (worth £386).

2nd and 3rd place will receive one of the GLX-D16 wireless system.

Shure Play For LA Guitar Competition

All you have to do is head over to the Shure competition website and download one of the three backing tracks (pop/rock, metal or funk) and record a video of yourself playing over the top of it.

Post your video on the Play for LA event page before the 31st July to enter. If you get over 50 likes on your video then you will be in with a chance of winning.

If you want to make your entry sound professional here are a few tips on how to mic up your guitar amp properly.

Best of luck with your entry! We would happily watch and support Dolphin entries - just tag us in the post and we will check out your video and give you some support. Make your performance a memorable one so that you stand out from the crowd.

Full terms and conditions for the competition can be found here.

Roland V-Drums Now With Special One-Off Extras

If you are considering a set of the highly acclaimed Roland V-Drums then this summer is a fantastic time to finally get that set you have been saving up for. They have thrown in two special one-off extras if you buy a HD-3 or TD-11/TD-15 between the 30th May and 31st July 2014.

Roland HD-3 - Live Drum Lesson With Craig Blundell

When purchasing a HD-3 V-Drum Kit you will receive a free live 1 hour drum lesson with expert drummer Craig Blundell. This lesson is aimed at beginners who want to learn how to play the drums, and you will learn some tips and tricks that will get you inspired to start practicing on your brand new HD-3 kit. This lesson will be online via live webcams and you will have the opportunity to ask Craig any questions you might have about the drums. A rare opportunity that should not be passed up!

Roland Electronic Drum Kit

How To Claim

All you have to do is purchase your HD-3 with us and head over to http://www.roland.co.uk/myroland/ to register your new purchase. You will receive a 3 year warranty once you do this, and you can then upload a picture of your Dolphin receipt to claim this special one-off opportunity for beginners. Roland will then contact you to arrange a date for your lesson. Simples!

Full HD-3 Offer Terms and Conditions:

  • Free 1 hour video lesson via live video streaming
  • Lesson hosted online with up to 10 students in attendance per session
  • Lessons available on selected dates. To check availability and book your lesson, contact Roland upon product registration.
  • Offer only available on sales made between 30/05/2014 to 31/07/2014
  • All claims for a free lesson must be received by Friday 08/08/2014
  • To take advantage of this offer, HD-3 product registration is required via http://www.roland.co.uk/myroland
  • HD-3 Kit must be bought from an authorised Roland UK Dealer (Dolphin) within the UK and Eire to qualify for the offer
  • Proof of Purchase required. Scan or send a legible photo your receipt and email to .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address), making sure to include the individual serial number of the product (or send by post to Customer Services, Roland UK, Atlantic Close, Swansea, SA7 9FJ). Alternatively, you can fax it on 01792 515048
  • The promotion is only available to customers living in the UK
  • This offer cannot be redeemed in conjunction with any other current offer
  • This offer does not apply to and excludes used or ex-demonstration HD-3 products
  • No cash alternative offered

Roland TD-11 & TD-15 Series - Free Extra Kits

Aimed at players who already play drums, this promotion applies to anyone who buys one of these TD-11 or TD-15 series professional V-Drum Kits. You will receive a free USB flash drive that contains 15 extra drum kits created by the pro Craig Blundell himself, and are available to plug into your new V-Drums kit for a whole new set of sounds! You can also edit and save any kit within the module and use this USB flash drive as a backup source - it’s win win!

Roland TD V-Drums Electric Drum Kit

How To Claim

All you have to do is purchase your TD V-Drums here with Dolphin and head over to Roland to register your new purchase. You will receive a 3 year warranty once you do this, and you can then upload a picture of your Dolphin receipt to claim this rare reward. Roland will then post it out to you - and you’ll have a whole range of new kits to play with!

TD-11 & TD-15 Terms and conditions:

  • Free USB Flash drive containing custom kit data can be claimed upon product purchase
  • To take advantage of this offer, product registration is required via http://www.roland.co.uk/myroland
  • USB flash drives sent via post to qualifying customers with 28 days of claim
  • Offer only available on transactions of TD-11K, TD-11KV, TD-15K and TD-15KV and TD-11/TD-15 module products made between 30/05/2014 to 31/07/2014
  • All claims must be received by Friday 31/08/2014
  • Your product must be bought from an authorised Roland UK Dealer (Dolphin) within the UK and Eire to qualify for the offer
  • Proof of Purchase required. Scan send a legible photo your receipt and email to .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address), making sure to include the individual serial number of the drum module (or send by post to Customer Services, Roland UK, Atlantic Close, Swansea, SA7 9FJ). Alternatively, you can fax it on 01792 515048
  • The promotion is only available to customers living in the UK
  • Items can only be delivered to an address in the UK and Eire and cannot be sent abroad
  • This offer cannot be redeemed in conjunction with any other current offer
  • This offer does not apply to and excludes used or ex-demonstration TD-11/TD-15 products
  • No cash alternative offered

Make sure you claim your reward before 31st August 2014 as this is the last date for claiming. Only available to customers living in the UK qualify for this promotion. If you are unsure which set of V-Drums would be best for you, why not give our friendly sales team a call on 0151 448 2080!

by Danny Edwards

Ableton Push & AIRA TR-8 In Sync

Ableton Push & AIRA TR-8 In Sync



Push is the ideal controller to have at the heart of a hybrid DAW/Hardware setup. Sync via MIDI and plug your hardware into an interface to get the best of both worlds. Complete hands on control of parameters with all the flexibility of software.


Shure SM58 - Designed To Dent

Shure SM58 Grille Design



Shure built the SM58 to be tough, real tough. We’ve all seen the classic example of a dented grille at a venue and wondering just how that happened. Shure have explained exactly how the SM58 can survive getting dropped in their blog. Alternativetly you could just watch this, ahem, educational video where they drop the mic out of a helicopter and run it over with a bus.

Orange Amplification Receive A Royal Visit For Awards

Orange Amplification Receive A Royal Visit For Awards

The Duke of Kent visited Orange’s headquarters on 13th May 2014 to recognise the company winning the coveted Queen’s Award for Enterprise: International Trade.  They have won it three times in six years, which is unprecedented in the music industry.

Orange Amp Duke of Kent Award for Amplifiers

The Duke, accompanied by The Deputy Lieutenant of Hertfordshire, Stuart Nagler JP was given a warm welcome as he spent nearly an hour visiting the Hertfordshire based facility with its research and development department and talking with management and staff. Cliff Cooper, Orange CEO and Damon Waller, Managing Director escorted the Duke on his tour showing him where the cutting edge products, that have driven the remarkable expansion of the company over the last forty years, have been developed and made.

For many years the Duke was Vice–Chairman of British Trade International, and then became the United Kingdom’s Special Representative for International Trade and Investment. Today he remains a patron of the Institute of Export and retains a great interest in enhancing the UK’s export performance.

Since receiving its first Queen’s Award in 2006, Orange Amplification has launched many new and innovative products, expanded into the computer market, and celebrated its 40th anniversary. Between its second award in 2009 and the third in 2012 the company grew their export sales by 90% and now sell Orange amps and other products into almost ninety countries worldwide.

Following one of the most exciting days at their HQ Cliff Cooper said “It has been a great honour to welcome HRH the Duke of Kent. Receiving three Queen’s Awards recognising our International Trade and performance how truly global the company has become has been made even more special by this royal visit. The Duke seemed to have a genuine interest in the success of our business in both UK and international markets and our contribution to the local and UK economy. Orange could not have done this without a highly dedicated team of staff throughout the world, they have made this possible and I would like to extend my heartfelt thanks to them all.”

You can check out our huge range of Orange Amps here!

Prince & 3RDEYEGIRL: The Gig Gear Guide

Prince & 3RDEYEGIRL: The Gig Gear Guide

Thousands of people witnessed Prince and his band of supremely talented ladies 3RDEYEGIRL this year in the UK, and if you were lucky enough to get involved with the tour you would agree that you have experienced an overwhelming presence of greatness that came in the shape of The Artist.

And although Prince’s phenomenal guitar and piano skills were completely enrapturing, we still couldn’t help having a sly peep at some of his snazzy on-stage customised kit whilst at the Manchester gig.

The stacks of Mesa Boogie amps fringed in purple were an easy spot, used with TC Electronic heads. We spied some more TC Electronic gear in the form of Prince’s FX pedals, including Flanger, Delay and Reverb amongst some well-concealed oldies.

3RDEYEGIRL’s drummer Hannah Ford was smashing what we believed to be a customised Gresch drum kit, Ida Nielsen was thrumming funky beats on her Sandberg bass and the hugely talented Donna Grantis was supporting her favourite Purple PRS CE22.

Prince had his go-to touring guitar in tow, the Vox 77, and on this particular night he was thrashing around Hendrix-style with his custom-painted number, featuring a purple flame design - and of course an iconic leopard-print guitar strap.

The performance finished with Purple Rain, were the audience was showered with flurries of sparkling confetti. As the music fades, we catch a last glimpse of Prince letting go a dozen purple balloons that everyone watches rise into the cavernous roof of the Phones 4u Area, “I got a whole lotta people here who can testify nobody can do it like Prince do…”

We completely agree.



For a comprehensive look into Prince’s gear, please take a look at our artist feature.


Boss DS1X And OD1X Review

Boss DS1X And OD1X Review


Peter Thorn gives us another great review that really shows what the Multi Dimensional Processing on the DS1X and OD1X is capable of. Pete describes it as dynamic and adaptive, when you’re playing rhythm it’s thick without getting muddy and singing clear on leads while never sounding harsh.

So if you ever find your sound getting swamped when playing chords or you lose dynamics when switching to lead with the pedal engaged, then Boss have a solution.

Carlos Santana Gear Guide

Carlos Santana Gear Guide

Carlos Santana Guitars


Premier Guitar have been blessed enough to look at some pretty famous guitar rigs over the years. Many of them are impressive due to their sheer scale and complexity but if one man really sums up the “less is more” philosophy it’s Carlos Santana. Of course when you’ve got Pete Cornish pedals, Mesa Boogie amps, PRS custom guitars and Carlos’ fingers then you don’t need a whole lot else.

Digitech Hardwire Pedal Guide

Digitech Hardwire Pedal Guide


Choosing the right pedal can be tricky, there’s so many to choose from with all kinds of wacky names and every taste catered for. While getting a custom, hand made, painted, tube distortion from a man with a beard in Vermont is great for the studio you really need a big name you can trust for live situations.

That’s why Digitech created the Hardwire series, designed from the ground up as live performance pedals. Compact, tough as nails and every one comes with a range of handy accessories to make sure things go smoothly at the gig, under any conditions.

Digitech Hardwire Accessories

Ace from Skunk Ananasie has long been a fan of Digitech, relying on them for a number of tours and using the Hardwire effects recently for recording. Talking to Guitarist magazine Ace said.

"The only non-DigiTech pedal I have on there is my Pearl Octave pedal because it’s the only thing that can give me that specific sound. I use the CM-2 [Tube Overdrive], the chorus and the delay which is absolutely brilliant…"

Want to hear the pedals in action? Then check out Digitech’s comparison above or visit the Hardwire Soundcloud.

Novation sure is Feelin’ Good

Novation sure is Feelin’ Good

Here’s a YouTube video featuring both Novation’s Launchpad S and Launchkey 49, which has reached half a million views in a week!

The live performance of James Brown’s “I Got You (I Feel Good)” by Pomplamoose is filmed in one take and all sounds are recorded or triggered live: so no overdubbing or lip-syncing! We think it’s rather good.

Also remember there’s that amazing Focusrite/Novation/KRK competition going on too, for more details on how to enter (42 entries left guys!) follow this link.

Fairlight Sampler

Nord Vintage Keys

Nord Vintage Keys

By Hugh McKenna


Mike Pinder of the Moody Blues demonstrates some of the sounds that made the Mellotron famous back in the 60’s. You can load a note perfect recreation of The Tron into your Nord Wave, Nord Electro 3/4, Nord Piano 2 and Nord Stage 2. You don’t even need to reload tapes and pay for maintenance! It doesn’t stop there though, there’s a whole range of classic keys just waiting to be downloaded and transferred to your favourite Nord keyboard.


It might be ex-Yes man and pop producer Trevor Horn who claims to be the first to buy one but arguably the most famous use of a Fairlight is from Herbie Hancock.


Before there was Mellotron there was a Chamberlin, similarly dusty and funky.

Analogue Synths

Plus a whole world of analogue goodies, as well as acoustic instruments, drums, guitars and more.

The only thing to do is to get on over to the Nord Sample Library and dig through the crates of classic and contemporary sounds.

TonePros Tune O Matic & Wraparound Bridges Now In Stock

TonePros Tune O Matic & Wraparound Bridges Now In Stock

by Danny Edwards
TonePros Electric Guitar Parts Wraparound Bridge

We are excited to announce the arrival of TonePros guitar hardware at Dolphin. TonePros have earned themselves a reputation for producing high-end electric guitar parts - specifically guitar bridges - that can be used on new and vintage instruments alike. They are now used by many manufacturers such as Gibson USA straight out of the factory - so what makes them so good?

Patented Locking System

The patented TonePros system means that your bridge will always be fixed even when the strings are off. No more messing around when changing strings! The real advantage of this is that you will have no play/wobble in your bridge - meaning that when you play unplugged you get much more resonance and volume through your guitar body, consequently improving your tone. You can feel the guitar vibrating in your hands a lot more, and when plugged in you get more sustain out of your guitar.

TonePros Locking Guitar Bridge Tune-O-Matic & Wraparound

Making the Best Even Better

TonePros are known for basing their hardware on industry standard guitar parts and making them even better than they were before. Their new G-Formula saddles are based on the original Nylon 66 saddles with some hi-tech additions to provide a slippery surface that prevents string breakage on previous Graphite models. Vintage guitar collectors are known to use TonePros as a playable replacement, so that they can take off their original vintage hardware and keep it safe whilst being able to play their prized vintage instrument without fear of devaluation.

TonePros Guitar Bridge G Saddle Technology

A Huge Range

They have released a huge range of Tune-O-Matic and Wraparound bridges for both Gibson and PRS style guitars. Nashville type and ABR-1 replacements are available, with the option of adding some TonePros saddle technology such as G-Formula or Roller Saddles for even better performance. All TonePros guitar bridges come with the System II Locking system, that set TonePros apart from other bridges/tailpieces. They have some limited/vintage looking hardware finishes, but here’s an example of the standard hardware finishes you can get:

TonePros Nickel Chrome Gold Black Colours Guitar Hardware

As Used By

TonePros are used by 52 guitar manufacturers, with notable brands such as: BC Rich Custom Shop, Brian Moore, Cort, Dean, Ernie Ball/Music Man, ESP, Gibson, Parker, Schecter and Washburn.

There is a HUGE list of artists from Metallica to Maroon 5 that use TonePros on their guitars. Check it out here.

If you want to get your hands on some TonePros hardware, visit our selection here. If you need any assistance choosing the right type for your guitar, one of our Dolphin experts will be ready to assist. Just drop us a comment below! TonePros Guitar Bridge TuneOMatic Wrap Around

How Do I Play…? Easy! Go to Learn To Play Day

Want to play guitar like Jimi Hendrix or do a double bass technique like Lombardo? ‘Learn To Play Day’ will teach you how!

Learn To Play Day is a national event that aims to encourage you to learn how to play the instrument of your dreams!  This Saturday 12th April music stores across the country will be promoting free lessons for all instruments: guitars, drums, synths, maracas – you name it; you will be shown how to play it.

The leaders of Learn To Play Day is the UK musical instrument charity ‘Music For All’. Chief Executive Paul McManus of Music For All said: "Wherever you are, whatever musical instrument or type of music you are interested in playing, there will be something close to everyone who wants to take part in Learn To Play Day."

So whether you’re a beginner or an expert in your designated field there will be plenty of free lessons in your area this Saturday.

Nate Mendel From The Foo Fighters On Ashdown

Nate Mendel From The Foos On Ashdown


It wasn’t until Nate came across Ashdown that he found an amp that could get loud enough without “farting out” on stage. Once he got his core tone down it was time to concentrate on distortion, collaborating with Ashdown to create a signature pedal that works beautifully with bass.


It’s not just Nate either, Radiohead, Biffy Clyro and the 1975 have all rocked Ashdown on stage and in the studio.

Waves Gold Bundle Offer In Words And Numbers

Waves Gold Bundle Offer In Words And Numbers

Even better value than ever the Waves Gold Bundle is packed with plugins, from EQ to compression and reverb. It’s a complete studio package.


Waves Gold Bundle Offer


The History Of MXR Pedals

History Of MXR Pedals

By Hugh McKenna


From being sold out of a suitcase to a place on the pedal boards of Jack White, Jeff Beck and Slash. MXR have come a long way in their 40 year history and the video above gives a little teaser of a new series of videos from MXR detailing that history.

Do Your Earphones Lack Bass?

Do Your Earphones Lack Bass?


Shure have produced this handy video for checking that your earphones fit snugly for proper bass frequency reproduction. Even a tiny air gap can cause a serious loss of low end, so it’s important to pick the sleeves that fit best.


Savings On Ableton & Push Bundles

Savings On Ableton & Push Bundles

Ableton Push Bundle Offer

Simply click on the link above to get savings of up £80 on Ableton upgrades and save over £100 on Ableton Push and Suite together. Ableton was already a lot more than a simple DAW, for years it’s been the choice of live performers who value ease or use, stability and creative intuition in their software.

Sonicstate have neatly demonstrated just how free flowing and intuitive Push is by creating a track in 10 minutes in the video above. Well done lads, we’ve got some tunes that have been sitting on a dusty external drive for 10 years now.

We’ve also looked at a few of them and how you can use Ableton to make dance, trance, electronica, rock, pop, hip hop.

Recording & Production With Ableton Live 9 & Push

Rob Papen Blue II Released

Rob Papen Blue II Released


With a huge range of virtual instruments in the stable Rob Papen is one of the biggest names in plugins, used by a massive range of artists including Armin van Buuren, Noisia and Teddy Riley. A diverse range of production credits including Trance, DnB and Pop. The new Blue II (like what we did there?) covers all these styles with a range of classic, warm analogue sounds and contemporary complex modulation.

Novation Launchpad S Control Pack with Ableton Live

Novation Launchpad S Control Pack with Ableton Live

Everybody already knows about how cool the Novation Launchpad series is. If you don’t, you need to watch this:

Novation’s next release is the Launchpad S Control Pack. Bringing together everything that is great about the Launchpad in one affordable bundle, it includes the popular Launchpad S, Launch Control, Ableton Live Lite 9, 1GB of loops and sounds and two custom designed soft cases - basically everything you need to just plug in and play.

Novation Launchpad S Control Pack

We really like the custom designed soft cases which make it easy to transport the Launchpad and Launch Control to/from gigs. It looks like they are going to be exclusive to this bundle alone - a nice little touch from Novation.

Novation Launchpad S Control Pack

You can turn your iPad into a creative music monster using Launchpad’s free app, which provides hours of fun as a standalone. But when you plug the Launchpad in to your iPad, it means business. For an ultra compact setup, you can just take your iPad, Launchpad S and Launch Control (in their fancy bags) to a gig, and power your hardware from your iPad - no power supplies necessary!

Buying the Launchpad S and Launch Control individually would cost more than this whole bundle alone. The Launchpad Control Pack saves you £30, plus you get the two free soft cases, a free copy of Ableton Live Lite 9, and 1gb of loops and samples to play with.

If anyone is after one of the new Launchpad S Control Pack’s they are available today from us here.

by Danny Edwards

Pink Floyd compiling multi-sensory exhibition for September 2014

Pink Floyd‘s four decade history is being compiled into a multi-sensory exhibition which will take place in Milan this September. Roger Waters, David Gilmour and Nick Mason have been working together to create the exhibition which they’re hoping will deliver a “vast and innovative” insight into the bands career.

Over 300 artefacts from Pink Floyd‘s career have been assembled for the upcoming exhibition and former Italian factory, La Fabbrica Del Vapore will host the week long event from September 19th 2014.

Curator Aubrey Powell talked about the event.
“If ever a band lent itself to a major retrospective exhibition, it’s Pink Floyd. Selecting what to include from such a treasure trove is both a dream and a nightmare. However, there were elements that just had to be included, for example a twenty-metre wide sculpture of The Wall, five-metre high inflatables, and of course, a flying pig.

“We’ll be aiming for state-of-the-art visuals and sonic delivery, similar to the experience of attending a Pink Floyd concert; you’ll never know what to expect next.”

The Pink Floyd Exhibition – Their Mortal Remains opens on September 19th however, tickets go on sale this Thursday (February 27). You can purchase tickets from the Pink Floyd Website here

Article by Stefanie Chew

Orange Launch Limited Edition White Amps

Orange Amps announced this week that they’ll soon be releasing a number of limited edition amplifiers in a newly designed white finish. As part of this limited edition release, the popular Rockerverb guitar amps, Thunderverb 200, and 50 heads,PPC412 and PPC212 Speaker Enclosures will all be having a makeover.

For a limited period of time, these new Orange Amps will be available in classic crisp white Levant covering and will feature a gold piping trim and gold capped handles. Orange amplifiers have never looked so good!.

We’re particularly thrilled by this limited edition run as it will feature some of the best amplifiers Orange has to offer.

The Orange Rockerverb amp is of the best Valve Combo amps on the market and earned itself a place on MusicRadar’s ‘best valve combo guitar amps in the world’ list in 2013. The Rockerverb amps feature a distinctive British tone that sets these amps apart from their competitors.

Like the Rockerverb series, the Orange Thunderverb amps are well known for their classic sound, style and features. The Thunderverb 200 has earned great respect for its Extended Tone Range technology and ground breaking engineering whilst the Thunderverb 50 has become a favourite amongst those that enjoy smaller cranked 50 watt power amps.

The PPC412 and the lighter, more compact PPC212 speaker enclosures continue the high standards associated with Orange and those fond of warm midrange tones will not be disappointed with either model.

These limited edition white amplifiers will be on show at the Frankfurt Musikmesse Exhibition later this year before they’re released to the public in April 2014.

Article By Stefanie Chew

Synthesizer Of The Week: MiniMoog Voyager Performer Edition

Our very first synthesizer of the week goes to the MiniMoog Voyager Performer Edition. This monophonic analog synthesizer was originally released back in 1970 when synths were becoming increasingly popular with pop and rock musicians. Moog noticed a gap in the market and aimed to design a new synthesizer that was affordable, portable and ideal for live performance. Many modular synths at the time were large and difficult to transport yet the new MiniMoog was smaller in size, more compact and cancelled out the need for patch cords.
The Minimoog grew in popularity due to its progressive design and powerful warm synthesizer sounds, whilst it also became re-known for its collection of analog synth bass sounds.

In this video footage, Bob Moog talks us through the functions of the MiniMoog synthesizer.

In 2002, Moog redesigned and relaunched the MiniMoog as the MiniMoog Voyager and launched a new series of MiniMoog Synthesizers which incorporated many modern day features with attractive characteristics of past models. A full range of MiniMoog synths were launched which included the Voyager XL, Voyager Electric Blue and our featured synth, the MiniMoog Voyager Performer. (You can browse the full collection here).

MiniMoog Voyager Performer Edition

The MiniMoog Voyager Performer Synthesizer features dual Moog filters, 4 analog envelope generators and like the original MiniMoog, this synth features 3 analog controlled oscillators. The MiniMoog Voyager incorporates modern features such as Midi capabilities and a 128 progam memory, which allows you to capture, record and transfer sounds to your computer.

Check out the playlist of sounds below which explores the collection of sounds that can be created with the MiniMoog Voyager.

More Features

  • Three wide-range, high stability VCO’s (Voltage Controlled Oscillators) with continuously-variable waveforms.
  • Five-input mixer for combining the audio sources prior to filtering.
  • Dual mode filter module includes dual lowpass and highpass-lowpass filtering. Dual lowpass mode consists of two Moog lowpass-resonant filters in parallel, one per output channel. Highpass-lowpass mode consists of Moog lowpass filter in series with a highpass filter.
  • Envelopes Module generates two wide-range ADSR (Attack Decay Sustain Release) envelopes. The Filter Envelope sweeps the filter and is available for modulation shaping. The Volume Envelope shapes the overall volume.
  • LFO: Low Frequency Oscillator generates triangular, square, Sample & Hold, and smoothed Sample & Hold waveforms for use as modulating signals.
  • Modulation Busses Module: Selects the sources, destinations, and shaping signals for the MOD WHEEL bus and the EXT PEDAL/ON bus.
  • Glide and Fine Tune Module: GLIDE varies the speed at which the keyboard voltage changes, from instantaneous to several seconds. FINE TUNE adjusts the overall tuning of the instrument.
  • 44 KEY KEYBOARD produces Pitch, Gate, Velocity, and Pressure control outputs.
  • WHEELS: Pitch Wheel bends pitch over a range of up to +/-1 octave. Mod wheel controls the gain of the MOD WHEEL bus.
  • THREE DIMENSIONALTOUCH SURFACE provides three continuously-variable control signals which are derived from the up-down and left-right position of the player’s finger, and the amount of area with which the player makes contact to the surface.

Famous musicians using MiniMoog Synths: The Chemical Brothers, The Orb, Kraftwerk, Nine Inch Nails.

MiniMoog Facts

  • Kraftwerk co-founder Ralf Hutter used a Minimoog on the successful concept album Autobahn, and the Minimoog was used extensively on many subsequent albums ‘The Man-Machine’ and ‘Computer World’.
  • Metronomy‘s Joseph Mount plays the Minimoog on ‘The English Riviera’ featured in the songs “The Look” and “The Bay”.

More information on the MiniMoog Voyager Performer can be found on the Dolphin Music website.

For further guidance on synthesizers, take a look at Dolphin Music’s Guide to Synthesizers.

Stefanie Chew

Jon Hopkins Synth Guide

In 2014, Jon Hopkins released an epic masterpiece that would not only gain him a Mercury Music Prize nomination, but would result in him selling out shows worldwide and gaining prize position on many festival lineups.

Jon’s fourth studio album Immunity featured a collection of immaculately crafted compositions ranging from beat perfect electronic jams to intricate piano led melodies, and Immunity rose to the podium taking prize position on many of 2013’s greatest album lists.

We took some time out to review the synthesizers Jon Hopkins uses to record and perform.

Korg MS-20 Synthesizer

Immunity opens with Open Eye Signal, a track written purely around the sounds of the Korg MS-20 synthesizer. This analog synthesizer is mostly used to achieve rich thick synth sounds and we see them appear throughout this album. Many of the bass sounds and techno riffs on Immunity are taken from the MS-20’s rich catalogue of sounds, a stunning collection of effects which includes bass sounds, worm leads and percussion effects.

Kaoss pad/ Korg Kaossilator Pro

As we see in the video above, Hopkins uses not one, but three Kaoss Pads to perform live. He creates synth sounds on the Kaoss pad by touching the screen as this is an incredibly easily way to play and manipulate sounds during a performance.

With 200 sound patches available, the collection on offer is fantastic and you’re given the choice of synths, percussion, basses and a range of sound effects. The upgraded version of the Kaoss Pad- The Korg Kaossilator pro, also features a vocoder, arpeggiator and four track loop recorder which allows you to overlap and arrange samples.

Another synth used on Immunity is the Roland SH-09 synthesizer, a classic 32 key synthesizer made back in 1980. The Roland SH-09 synthesizers have been discontinued and are hard to get by, however; Hopkins managed to borrow a SH-09 while recording and as a result, the SH-09 synth was used to create many of the bass sounds on Immunity. The sub-oscillator on the SH-09 makes this synthesizer a great provider of bass sounds, though it doesn’t have the ability to create thunderous bass sounds in the way that a Moog synthesizer does.

That’s our run-down of the list of synths being used by Jon Hopkins, however, his recording studio features an incredible selection of equipment. Other items in his setup include a Mackie Control and Mackie Big Knob whilst he’s also said to be using SourceForge and Logic to record.

For more information on Jon Hopkins live dates, releases and news, visit his website. Article by Stefanie Chew

Guitar Of The Week: Gretsch White Falcon

The White Falcon guitar is a Gretsch classic.This 17 inch wide guitar can be easily spotted by its large body and the gold pickguard which features a unique engraved falcon. Featuring the distinctive warm, rich Gretsch sound and endless feedback abilities, the White Falcon is a popular companion for those fond of the classic vintage sound.

This high-end electric hollowbody guitar was introduced in the mid 1950’s and took its design inspiration from the custom painted, chrome cars that were very trendy at the time. Fender had started using custom car paint on their guitars and Gretsch followed their lead. On its release the White Falcon gained the name “The Cadillac of guitars,”.

Designed by Jimmy Webster, the original Gretsch White Falcon featured six wheel saddles and a threaded mounting bar. As we see in the middle photo, the tailpiece of the White Falcon guitar looked very similar in style to the logo used for 50’s Cadillacs.

The 50’s saw Gretsch guitars soar in popularity, mainly due to the fact George Harrison appeared with The Beatles on the Ed Sullivan show performing with a Gretsch Country Gentleman guitar. The popularity of the Gretsch continued into the 60’s when Neil Young and Stephen Stills adopted the Gretsch White Falcon as their signature guitar.

In the video below, Stephen Stills talks about his reasons behind using to Gretsch White Falcon guitar.

Many amendments have been made to the White Falcon since its initial launch and there are currently a number of different models on the market. Those looking for a replica of the classic mid 50’s design would be best viewing the Gretsch G6136CST White Falcon however; the Gretsch G6136T White Falcon also stays very close to the 1959 design. The most affordable White Falcon on the market is the Gretsch G5022CWFE White Falcon. This electro-acoustic guitar features a simplified design yet gives a great introduction to the classic Gretsch sound.

You can view our full range of Grestch White Falcon Guitars on the Dolphin Music website.

Stefanie Chew

Rock N Roll Marathon Comes To Liverpool

If you love music and enjoy running, the Rock n Roll Marathon may just be event for you. On May 25th 2014, America’s Rock n Roll marathon series makes its way to Liverpool for the first time and will take over the city for the day with both a full and half marathon.

Participating in the Rock N Roll Marathon is a great way to introduce yourself to the grueling 26 mile event. Bands are lined up to perform at every mile and the Rock n Roll marathon is re-known for its party-like atmosphere. The course for Liverpool has been designed to tour the city centre, starting and finishing at the waterfront and passing many of the city’s iconic landmarks en route.

Though bands are yet to be announced for the Liverpool event, past performers on previous runs have included Goo Goo Dolls, Sugar Ray and Counting Crows.

For more information on how to enter and to sign up for updates on this event, visit the Rock n Roll Marathon Website

Article by Stefanie Chew

Artist Interview : Petrels

Multi-instrumentalist Oliver Barrett, aka Petrels, is well known for his textured ambient music. His previous albums Haeligewielle and Onkalo were highly acclaimed around Europe and led to him touring with Tim Hecker, FIRE!, Nate Young (Wolf Eyes)and Hans-Joachim Roedelius (Cluster). We took some time out to interview Petrels before the upcoming release of his third album ‘MIMA’.

MIMA is your third album to date. How did recording this album compare to recording your earlier releases?

I’ve recorded and produced all the Petrels albums the same way myself just with Logic on my laptop. The main thing that’s changed across the three is just the scope of what I’m able to do outside of that. The first album - ‘Haeligewielle’ - was very self-contained and the vast majority of it was recorded at home. But then between that and the second (’Onkalo’) I built my own studio with a couple of friends which meant that I could incorporate a lot more live drums, piano, guitars and other sound sources at louder volumes than my neighbours would let me get away with. With Mima, it’s kind of levelled out a bit again - probably a mix of the first two albums in terms of how much I recorded at home or in the studio. The key difference is that I’ve amassed a few more instruments and other bits and pieces of gear and so there’s definitely a bigger spread of sound sources and instrumentation than on ‘Haeligewielle’.

What sparked your initial interest in recording and performing music?

Happened a bit too early to say for sure I think. Both my parents play and love music and so I grew up with it being a focal point in the house. When I was 11 I managed to borrow a battered old 4-track tape recorder from school over the Summer holidays and spent 6 weeks recording myself doing different things and playing it back at the wrong speed or backwards. I guess that maybe kickstarted my interest in the recording process. I’ve played in various bands and different groups across a load of different genres so there was no ‘eureka’ moment - it’s all just kept on building.

Did you play any instruments at a young age? if so, what did you play?

I played cello from about the age of 4 (it was about as big as a viola) which I played pretty intensively until my teens when playing guitars in bands seemed a hell of a lot more appealing and then kind of came back round to it in my early 20’s again.

Do you have any advice for novices wanting to write music digitally?

Wouldn’t want to pretend I’m any kind of authority but maybe just to not get too concerned with the ‘right’ way to do things. There’s plenty of people who’ll tell you there’s a certain way to record things ‘properly’ whatever the scenario. If it sounds good to you, it is good. I think there’s a lot to be gained from intentionally trying to do things wrong - make instruments and programmes and plugins etc do things that they weren’t meant to do. It’s easy to get into the mindset that you could make exactly the music you wanted to make if you just had that next one piece of gear or software without trying to get the most out of what you currently have. Mind you, I appreciate that’s maybe not the best approach to suggest on an online music equipment retail site, so maybe a better summary would just be: ignore everybody else’s advice and just make the music you want to make.

Your music is very atmospheric and certainly experimental. What equipment do you use to record and perform?

I’m going to answer this and the next question in one. My live set-up is basically a stripped down version of what I use to record with but the amount of scaling down is pretty drastic. For my current live set up I have a couple of synths (I say ‘synths’ - I have a secondhand Micorkorg and a battered old 3-octave Yamaha keyboard I bought for a tenner), my laptop - on which I manipulate a few of the more dense sound samples that I can’t easily re-create live - a bunch of guitar pedals (mostly Boss and Behringer), a Mackie 802 mixer and then a couple of contact mics. To record, the only really consistent thing is that I record to laptop on Logic Express but apart from that I tend to draw on whatever I can get my hands on.

Is there any equipment you would like to add to your live setup?

The list is pretty much infinite! At the moment my live set-up (especially on the continent) is determined by what I can fit in a 20kg suitcase. When I started doing Petrels gigs I was using my cello and had an extra synth and a harmonium - all of that went the minute I got my first gig in Germany (Ryanair are pretty unforgiving with their luggage allowance).

You say you draw inspiration from wide range of both visual and cultural sources. Do you pick a theme before composing?

It tends to vary depending on what I’m working on. The first Petrels album was very tightly focussed around a single subject (the Victorian diver William Walker singlehandedly strengthening the foundation of Winchester Cathedral) and I had this in mind before I started. But a lot of the time the process isn’t this self-conscious, though I generally get my inspiration to write and record from some kind of external idea or subject that gets me thinking in whatever way so I guess the two go pretty closely hand in hand.

What are your plans for 2014? do you plan to tour the UK or perform at any festivals?

I’m aiming to do a short UK tour with Tartaruga Records’ Max Bondi, and a European tour with Talvihorros later in the year. Whether with Petrels or with previous bands I’ve always booked UK gigs myself (through necessity as much as anything else) so it just depends on what pans out. I should also have another LP out on Denovali in the summer and hopefully a couple of release from other projects I’m currently working on. As for festivals, it’d be great - it seems pretty hard to get a look-in on the UK festival circuit these days unless you’ve got some money/PR behind you but who knows.

Petrels third album MIMA will be released on Denovali Records on February 21st 2014. For more information on Petrels and to listen to more music, visit Floating Limb, Bandcamp or Facebook

Article by Stefanie Chew

Squarepusher Joins Forces With Robots For Upcoming EP, ‘Music For Robots’.

Electronic experimental musician Squarepusher will collaborate with a robotic band on his next EP ‘Music for Robots’.

The band named ‘Z machines’ is the result of a Japanese challenge for roboticists which launched in 2013 to create a music-performing system with advanced musical capabilities. After being invited to compose music for the project, Squarepusher released the poignant ‘Sad Robot Goes Funny’ a track composed by himself and performed in full by the ‘Z machines’. The track features 3 robots which function like animatronic MIDIs and in the video below, a guitarist with 78 fingers, a drummer with 22 arms and a mechanical keyboard player all perform Squarepusher‘s composition.

Squarepusher talked about his involvement with the project:

“Each of the robotic devices involved in the performance of this music has its own specification which permits certain possibilities and excludes others - the robot guitar player for example can play much faster than a human ever could, but there is no amplitude control. In the same way that you do when you write music for a human performer, these attributes have to be borne in mind - and a particular range of musical possibilities corresponds to those attributes. Consequently, in this project familiar instruments are used in ways which till now have been impossible.”

Sad Robot Goes Funny’ gives us a taster of what we may hear on the forthcoming EP ‘Music For Robots’ which features 5 tracks performed in full by the Z Machines.

Squarepusher talked about his hopes for the EP:

“In this project the main question I’ve tried to answer is ‘can these robots play music that is emotionally engaging?.”

“I have long admired the player piano works of Conlon Nancarrow and Gyorgy Ligeti. Part of the appeal of that music has to do with hearing a familiar instrument being ‘played’ in an unfamiliar fashion. For me there has always been something fascinating about the encounter of the unfamiliar with the familiar. I have long been an advocate of taking fresh approaches to existing instrumentation as much as I am an advocate of trying to develop new instruments, and being able to rethink the way in which, for example, an electric guitar can be used is very exciting”.

Squarepusher‘s upcoming EP ‘Music For Robots’ will be released on April 7th 2014. For more information visit the Squarepusher website or check out Squarepusher on Facebook.

Stefanie Chew

Korg To Revive Classic Korg Arp Odyssey Synth

Korg announced this week that they plan to revive the classic Korg Arp Odyssey synth. Following hot on the heels of Roland and their Volca series, Korg is hoping that a full upgrade can give the classic Arp Odyssey a new lease of life.

The Arp Odyssey Synthesizer was originally released in the 1970’s as a competitor to the popular Minimoog. Unlike the Minimoog, the Odyssey was a 2-oscillator synth with duo-phonic subtractive capability. The Odyssey also featured a resonant low pass filter, ADSR envelopes, sine or square wave LFO and sample and hold functions. The Arp Odyssey became massively popular in the 70’s and musicians became incredibly fond of it’s unique selection of analog sounds.

Though still in design stage, Korg has announced that David Friend, co-founder and designer of ARP instruments, will work as chief advisor on the new Arp Odyssey Synth.Korg has stated that the forthcoming Arp will replicate many of the classic features however, we would expect the new Arp to be fully installed with USB/MIDI functionality.

As yet, Korg has not announced an official release date for the new Arp Odyssey, however; it has been said that we will see the release before the end of 2014.

Article by Stefanie Chew

5 UK Festivals You’ve Never Heard Of

Dates 28th-30th August
Where Bristol
Price Weekend tickets £65
Lineup Three Trapped Tigers, And So I Watch You From Afar, TTNG, Nordic Giants, The Physics House Band, Baby Godzilla

It may not be be the size of Glastonbury, Leeds or Reading, but ArcTanGent Festival is creating a buzz amongst rock fans in the UK. Taking place just outside the city of Bristol, this 3 day festival features a lineup like no other, showcasing the best math rock, post rock and noise rock bands from around the world. ArcTanGent festival was nominated for the Best New Festival and Best Small Festival at the UK Festival Awards last year and featured 70 bands playing over 4 stages. Previous acts to have played ArcTanGent include 65daysofstatic, Future of the Left, And So I Watch You From Afar and Fuck Buttons.

Sounds From The Other City
Dates Sunday May 4th 2014 (Bank holiday weekend)
Where Manchester
Price £10-£18
Lineup KAREN GWYER, Lee Gamble, Pete Herbert, Plank!, Raikes parade

Sounds From The Other City is a real celebration of the Manchester music scene, bringing together some of the best independent promoters and club nights the North West has to offer. Since starting 10 years ago, the festival has grown significantly and cemented itself as a major player in the North West festival scene. Sounds From The Other City is a real DIY affair and features performances in pubs, churches, community centres and train stations. Highlights from last year’s lineup included Deptford Goth, Still Corners and Stealing Sheep.

SuperSonic Festival
Dates 30th-31st May
Where Birmingham Custard Factory
Price £45
Lineup Swans, Matmos, Wolf Eyes, Ex Easter Island Head, Agathe Max

If you’re quick, you may just be able to get some of the last remaining tickets for this years SuperSonic festival. This 2 day festival celebrates 10 years of existence this year, and to mark the milestone they’ve curated ‘Supersonic Festival Ltd Etd’ a small, intimate 2 day event. If previous lineups are anything to go by, SuperSonic festival promises big things as LCD soundsystem, DJ Food and Coil once graced the stages of this inner city festival. 2014’s lineup is already set to be a classic with Swans named as the main headliner alongside Wolf Eyes, Matmos and more.

FutureEverything Festival
Dates 27th March- 1st April
Where Individually priced shows
Price £45
LineupTim Hecker, Darkside, Julianna Barwick, Evian Christ & More

Though Manchester’s Future Everything isn’t purely a music festival, we had to give it a mention due to its incredibly attractive lineup. Named by The Guardian as one of the ‘Top Ten Ideas Festivals In The World’ this week long event focuses primarily on digital culture and technology which links nicely with electronic and experimental music. This year FutureEverything features an attractive lineup of music performances including Evian Christ, Darkside, Tim Hecker and Julianna Barwick.In its 19th year, the festival celebrates with the theme “Tools For Unknown Futures” and will feature conferences and discussions on the veritable future of music.

Threshold Festival
Dates 28th-30th March 2014
Where Liverpool
Price Three Day Wristband £25
Lineup Gideon Conn, Alpha Male Tea Party, Etches, Kusangi, Natalie McCool & More

Threshold Festival aims to celebrate music, theatre, film, performance and visual arts and unlike its big brother, Liverpool Sound City, this small inner city festival places its focus on the upcoming artists of the UK. Some of the best unsigned bands from around the country will perform alongside an eclectic mix of art installations and performance pieces.

Download Novation Sound Pack & Win a T-Shirt

It’s been a few weeks since Novation released their the recent heritage documentary however the celebration of Novation continues this month with even more free downloads.

Fans of the Novation synthesizers will be pleased to hear that Novation have released a FREE downloadable Synth sound pack created specifically for use with the Ultranova and Mininova synths. The sound pack features iconic synth sounds from tracks released in 1992 through to today and includes classic and recognisable sounds from house, dubstep, drum & bass, breaks, trance, R&B, UK garage spanning the last 22 years.

We’ve teamed up with Novation to give you the chance to win a limited edition Novation T-shirt. All you need to do is the following:

1 Watch the video above and write down the name of each track you hear.

2 Share our Facebook Post  to your Facebook page, naming all 7 tracks with your post

Four winners will be drawn on Friday 21st February at 1pm. Good Luck!

To download the FREE sound pack, visit the Novation Website http://uk.novationmusic.co.uk/soundpacks

Terms & Conditions
Please ensure your Facebook share is made public to allow us to see that you have shared the post. All entrants must reside in the UK and prizes must be claimed within 30 days of the closing date. Your Facebook settings must allow Dolphin Music to send you a personal message in order to allow us to contact you directly if you win. Please check your account settings to enable this feature. Winners will be drawn on Friday 21st February at 1pm.

Article by Stefanie Chew

Fender Learn To Play Day 2014

Fender announced this week that they’ll be holding a ‘Learn to Play Day’ in partnership with the Registry of Guitar Tutors in April.

If you’ve always wanted to learn guitar but never had the chance, this is the event for you. Beginners in particular are encouraged to attend the 1 day event and those picking up the strings for the first time will receive a free introductory lesson from one of the Fender team or RGT certified tutors.

Performers of all levels are welcome at the event and for the more competent performer, a range of Fender guitars will be available to try throughout the day at specially setup private practice stations.

Taking place on April 12th, the event will be hosted by The Gallery Soho in London, an event space with fantastic views down Denmark Street, London’s world-famous music shop destination. Local dealers will be taking part in the event and there will be a number of street activities taking place throughout the day.

Learn To Play Day is a national event organised by the Music for All charity to inspire new and lapsed musicians to take up playing an instrument and will take place at the following address: 125 Charing Cross Road, London, WC2H 0EW from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. on Saturday 12th April.

For details of all the 2014 National Learn To Play Day events, visit www.learntoplayday.com

Article by Stefanie Chew


Breakthrough For Travelling Musicians

This week news broke that the European parliament has voted in favour of law changes which would benefit musicians travelling by air.

The new proposal would solve many of the problems musicians have faced for years and would mean that for the first time, air carriers must allow passengers to carry small instruments onto a plane. The new proposal also states that air carriers must clearly indicate terms and conditions for the transport of larger instruments in order to eradicate confusion.

The proposal was put to paper as a result of a petition by the FIM (International federation of musicians) which saw more than 40,000 people sign to bring in legislation to clarify rules on travelling with instruments.

John Smith, MU General Secretary and FIM President, says: “I am delighted that the European Parliament has voted in favour of this proposal, which will make such a difference to working musicians..’

“The MU has been lobbying on this issue for years and actually reached an agreement with the Department for Transport in 2006, but we have long been saying that it is only by working at a European and international level that we can successfully tackle this issue, as the problem is much broader than just UK airlines. “The issue has always been that existing law allows each airline to set their own policy regarding musical instrument, and this proposal would bring much needed uniformity and fairness to the whole sector. “I urge the European Council to follow the Parliament’s lead and endorse this regulation as soon as possible.”

The proposal must now also go before the European Council before we find out the outcome.

Article by Stefanie Chew

TONTO: The World’s Largest Synthesizer

Tonto is simply an acronym for ‘The Orignal New Timbral Orchestra’, the largest and most famous multi-timbral polyphonic analog synthesizer in the world. Made by Malcolm Cecil, Tonto became one of the most famous and influential synthesizers of our time and went on to feature on albums by Stevie wonder Quincy Jones, Bobby Womack, The Isley Brothers and Gil Scott-Heron amongst others.

Cecil came from an engineering background and though he’d previously performed in jazz and blues bands, he’d always maintained an interest in electrical engineering. Cecil started building Tonto with a Moog Modular Synthesizer series III which was later joined by a Moog III, four Oberheim SEMs, two ARP 2600‘s, modules from Serge, EMS, Roland and Yamaha. To add to this, Cecil and fellow engineer Serge Tcherepnin designed many modules themselves and what started as a relatively normal sized synthesizer, now took the name Tonto and at twenty foot wide and 6 ft tall, Tonto became the largest modular synthesizer in the world.

“I wanted to create an instrument that would be the first multitimbral polyphonic synthesizer. Multitimbral polyphony is different than the type of polyphony provided by most of today’s synthesizers, on which you turn to a string patch and everything under your fingers is strings. In my book ‘multitimbral’ means each note you play has a different tone quality, as if the notes come from separate instruments. I wanted to be able to play live multitimbral polyphonic music using as many fingers and feet as I had”. Malcolm Cecil

Now that Cecil had successfully created his dream synthesizer, he decided the time was right to unveil it to the world and as a result, ‘Tonto’s Expanding Head Band’ was formed. Cecil joined forces with Robert Margouleff in the 70’s to release a number of albums. Zero time, It’s about time and Tonto Rides again, failed to sell in huge quantities however, the albums were hugely influential to artists such as Tangerine Dream and most famously Stevie Wonder, who went on to work with Tonto’s Expanding Head Band on a number of his albums.

“How great it is at a time when technology and the science of music is at its highest point of evolution, to have the reintroduction of two of the most prominent forefathers in this music be heard again,” said Stevie Wonder.“It can be said of this work that it parallels with good wine. As it ages it only gets better with time. A toast to greatness… a toast to Zero Time… forever”.
Stevie Wonder on working with Tonto’s Expanding Head Band

The video below shows Malcom Cecil, Robert Margouleff and Stevie Wonder working together in the studio and features an interview with both Cecil and Margouleff.

Though Tonto and the Expanding Head Band are still active to this day, the Tonto Synthesizer no longer remains in Mark Cecil’s hands. In the 90’s, the synthesizer was briefly in the hands of Mark Mothersbaugh and Devo, however it has now been purchased by the National Music Centre in Calgary, Canada.

Synthesizer Assembly Kits

NAMM 2014 witnessed more and more brands releasing new synthesizers and one of our favourite new products for 2014 is the Korg MS20 Analogue Synthesizer Assembly Kit.

This is a great purchase for anyone enthusiastic about building a synthesizer and this assembly kit features all the parts you need to re-create a full size MS20 synth with your very own hands.
The MS-20 kit features filters from both early and late versions of the classic synth and even allows you to switch between the two. You can find out more about the MS-20 assembly kit here

If you’d rather have your synth delivered ready-made, you can also check out our
full selection of synthesizers online here

If you’re interested in finding out more information on Malcolm Cecil, you can visit his official website here.

Article By Stefanie Chew

Numark Remix Toolkit

Numark Mixtrack With Free Remix Toolkit Worth £129

Numark Mixtrack With Free Remix Toolkit Worth £129

Whether you need sound effects to drop into your set or loops for production in your DAW Numark have an awesome deal for you. Teaming up with Prime Loops they’ve offering 380+ samples for free with their Mixtrack controllers.

Here’s a taste of just what’s on offer

Robert Smith’s Live Setup

It’s been a while since The Cure stepped out with a new record however; last week the group announced that they will shortly be releasing their 14th studio album, the “tentatively” titled ‘4:14 Scream’.

As yet, the band hasn’t released much information about what’s to come, but sources state that a live concert DVD will soon be made available and another ‘Trilogy’ style show will take place around the world at the end of the year.

In celebration of The Cure’s return, we decided to take some time out to look at the gear Robert smith uses to perform live.

Formed in 1976, The Cure suffered many line-up changes during their 38 year existence, however Robert Smith remained front-man throughout. With 13 albums and more than 30 singles released, the bands style has understandably shifted throughout their career, and after being defined as a post-punk band in the early days, The Cure were later given many labels including new wave and gothic rock. Everything from atmospheric soundscapes to perfectly formed pop songs became part of their set and Robert Smith‘s live gear had to cater for them all.

Robert Smith certainly liked his vintage gear and for his live setup, his guitar of choice was a vintage classic, the Chet Atkins Classic Country Gentleman guitar.

This double-cutaway style guitar was released back in 1958 and was a popular model during the British invasion of the 1960s. The Chet Akins Classic Country Gentleman guitar was frequently used by Smith to create rich twangy sounds whilst its 22 medium-jumbo frets made it the perfect guitar for fast fretwork.

The Fender BASS VI and the Schecter Ultra bass were two more guitars frequently chosen to accompany Robert Smith onstage and later in The Cure’s career, Schecter made the UltraCure, a custom Robert Smith version of their Schecter Ultra six-string bass. Smith enjoyed performing with this bass guitar as it’s said to have made the chorus and flanger sound fuller.

Though not the heaviest pedal user we’ve seen, Robert Smith likes to perform with a good selection of effects pedals, and everything from the Cry Baby Wah Wah to distortion and chorus pedals are part of his live setup.

The Jim Dunlop Cry Baby Wah Wah Pedal sounds just like would expect it to, twisting and tweaking guitar riffs to give them a more full and distorted sound. One of Jim Dunlop‘s biggest sellers, this guitar pedal is up there with the best and since being released in 1966, the pedal has been used by many guitarists, including Jimi Hendrix and Eric Clapton. More Info

The Boss DS-1 Distortion is a classic when it comes to distorting sounds and it’s not surprising that we found this in The Cure’s stage gear. Whether it’s keyboards or guitars you want to distort, this pedal provides hard distorted sounds without the unwanted interruptions. More Info

The BOSS Super Overdrive pedal is being used to produce subtle and smooth overdrive and is perfect for use on the the Cure’s more atmospheric tracks. This compact FX pedal produces rich, warm distortion without drowning out the nuances of the Smith’s picking technique. More Info

The Dunlop Super Phaser is a phaser pedal which produces incredibly thick tone. This versatile guitar FX pedal can be used to create chorus sounds and is great for producing thick rich chords and frequency effects. More pedals from Jim Dunlop

Robert Smith’s use of the BOSS Super Chorus FX pedal, enables him to create rich, heavy chorus sounds with a single strum. The super chorus pedal is a great addition to any setup as it makes any guitar performance sound lusciously rich. More Info

It’s no surprise that Robert Smith’s pedal setup includes a Flanger pedal as distressed warped guitars feature on a good selection of the Cure’s tracks. The BOSS BF-2 Flanger delivers thick stereo flanging, adding life to guitar riffs through a selection of delay, chorus and vibrato effects. More Info

The Boss Tremolo Pan was only in short distribution between 1990 and 1995 and is a very sought after model today due to its ability to emulate tremolo effects of vintage guitar amps. Tremolo settings allowed users to create a fantastic collection of tremolo effects from throbbing amp-like tones through to hard tremolo tones and on-off stutter effects. The Boss Tremolo pan has since been replaced by the Boss TR-2 pedal. More Info

As we’ve seen, Smith is a fan of Boss FX pedals and this is the 6th and final Boss pedal in his live setup. The Boss Digital Delay Pedal has been named many a time as one of the best digital delay FX pedals on the market. This compact stomp box offers 3 different delay modes which offer guitarists the ability to add instant ambiance and atmosphere to any guitar performance. More Info

The Cure altered their live setup over the years and Robert Smith often added to his pedal board. It’ll be interesting to see how the band has evolved since their last tour and whether the band has amended their live setup for their 2014 performances.

To keep up to date with future announcements from The Cure visit www.TheCure.com or follow the band on Twitter

Roland AIRA Update

After weeks of waiting, the launch of the Roland AIRA series is almost here. Next Friday, we’ll be able to show you exactly which products are part of the AIRA range but until then, it’s more teasers I’m afraid.

This morning, the team at Roland have taken 1 step closer to the big reveal and the following photos and videos have been released. In true Roland style, we don’t have a clear view of what’s on offer however; they do give us a good idea of what to expect.

For more information and to watch all the teaser videos visit the AIRA website.

Article by Stefanie Chew

Guitar Of The Week: Rickenbacker 360

Say hello to the Rickenbacker 360, a traditional vintage-style guitar with all the components of a modern model.

Made in the 1960’s the Rickenbacker has adapted with time and over the years this semi-acoustic electric guitar has been updated to meet the needs of the modern guitar player. Though large in size, the Rickenbacker is an incredibly comfortable guitar to play and throughout generations it’s become a favourite of many guitarists.

Fugazi guitarist, Guy Picciotto is just one of the names that swore by the Rickenbacker and he spent most of his career thrashing out hardcore riffs from the Rickenbacker‘s slick design. If you look closely at the video below, you see Picciotto with his Rickenbacker in the opening few seconds.

When it appeared in the 1960’s, the Rickenbacker 360 raised many eyebrows as stylistically, it failed to fit the mould. Though some components have since been updated, the design of the Rickenbacker 360 remains the same as it was back in the 60’s. The Rosewood Fingerboard remains inlayed with triangular pearloid markers and the guitar still features its beautifully bound body. The maple neck of the Rickenbacker guitar features dual truss rods and single-coil pickups have been included to ensure it delivers a range of tones.

Fun Fact: The Rickenbacker most famously appeared in 12 string version on ‘A Hard Days Night, where it was used by George Harrison.

Famous players: REM’s Peter Buck, Guy Picciotto- Fugazi, Pete Doherty- The Libertines, James dean bradfield- the manic street preachers.


  • Body Type- Semi-Acoustic
  • No. Frets- 24
  • Body Wood- Maple
  • Neck Wood- Maple
  • Fingerboard Wood- Rosewood
  • Weight- 3.6 kg (8.0 lbs.)
  • Neck Binding- Yes
  • Fret Marker Style- Triangle
  • Tailpiece- ‘‘R’‘
  • Bridge- 6 Saddle
  • Neck Type- Set-in
  • No. of Pickups- 2
  • Type of Pickups- Hi-gain
  • Output Type- Mono and Stereo
  • Machine Heads- Schaller

For more information on the Rickenbacker 360, visit the Dolphin Website.

Stefanie Chew


A brief history of the TR808 and the TR909

With only 1 week left til the release of the Roland AIRA series, the countdown has truly begun and after watching the teaser videos, there’s a slight air of excitement for the launch. Those following the AIRA saga will have seen hints that both the TR808 and TR909 could be part of the AIRA range, and for fans of these drum machines the expectation is high. We took a look at why these drum machines were so popular amongst musicians when they were originally released in the 1980’s.

Introduced in 1980, the Roland TR808 was one of the first programmable drum machines. Using analog synthesis to create its sounds, the TR808 featured a wide selection of drum sounds and effects and became an integral part of music production in the 80’s due to the fact it was a simple, affordable way to produce drum sounds. Whilst its competitors produced more authentic drum sounds,the TR808 was a popular choice with R&B, hip-hop, dance and techno producers due to its unique selection of effects. Crispy snare sounds, tinny hand-claps, its deep booming bass kicks, distinctive cowbell and trashy hi-hat effects all made the TR808 a major player in 80’s composition.

Famous users of the TR808 include Orbital, Aphex Twin, The Beastie Boys, Dr Dre, Ritchie Hawtin and many many more. Here’s a quick demonstation of the TR808 drum machine in action.

After witnessing the soaring popularity of the TR808,Roland decided to upgrade the product and released its successor, the TR909. Introduced in 1983, this partially sample-based, partially analog drum machine featured a 16 step sequencer and an upgraded drum kit with more realistic sounds than the TR808. Techno and house producers quickly took the TR909 under their wing and the collection of bass kicks and analogue sounds heavily featured in a new scene of heavy rhythm based tracks.

Watch the track below for an example of how the TR909 was typically used in techno music.

Now you’ve seen the TR909 in action, why not try it for yourself. The image below links to an online Roland TR909 emulator which allows you to experiment with the sounds and features of the TR909.

It’s pretty clear why the music industry is excited about the forthcoming release of AIRA and though we don’t yet know what new features will be unveiled, we’re expecting big things. The Roland AIRA range will be launched on February 14th 2014. To watch all the teaser videos and follow the countdown, visit the Roland Aira website.

Stefanie Chew

Love Music. Protect Your Ears.

It’s Tinnitus awareness week in the UK and as Tinnitus is a condition that will affect many musicians and music fans in their lifetime it’s something we’d like to bring to your attention.

We’ve all experienced it at some point, either leaving a club or a particularly loud show. That after-party buzzing in the ears isn’t particularly pleasant and normally disappears, however for those with Tinnitus, its there to stay.

Tinnitus is the medical term for noises continually heard in the ears or head and is often described ringing in the ears. With no cure for the condition, those that develop tinnitus will continually hear this buzzing, throughout the day and night, even when in noise-free surroundings. This can be particularly distressing and many sufferers of tinnitus go on to have problems sleeping, anxiety and in some cases extreme cases of stress.

There is however some good news. You CAN enjoy music without worrying about damaging your ears and we’re going to give you a few tips on how to protect your ears.

Sound isolating headphones
Sound isolating headphones work by using ultra soft, flexible sleeves which fit snugly into your ear to block out background noise. In order to benefit from the headphones, they have to fit comfortably and most sound isolating headphones include different fittings to cater for a range of ear sizes.

View our range of sound isolation earphones here

Noise cancelling headphones Noise cancelling headphones differ in the way they actively counter any environmental noise that interrupts your music.The majority of these headphones are designed in an over the ear style and protect your ears by creating sound waves which actively cancel out high frequency noises. Active noise cancelling requires battery power to work and in most cases rechargeable batteries are needed to re-charge the headphones.

For more information on Tinnitus awareness week visit the Action On Hearing Loss website.

Stefanie Chew


Introducing Suzanne Ciani


Suzanne Ciani was one of the first female electronic musicians to make a living from composing electronic music. Studying music and composition at the University of California, Berkeley was the starting point of her career and on seeing her professor compose sounds from computers, the 60’s cemented Ciani’s interest in electronic composition.

Fixated on the idea of composing herself, Ciani began working under famous synthesizer creator Don Buchla and helped Buchla to build the Buchla series 100 modular synthesizers.


The Buchla synthesizer (seen above) combines many different components which separately generate or modify a music event. Each box on the synth served a function which included oscillators, amplifiers, envelope generators and analog sequencer modules. Using the different modules, allowed you to alter the pitch, timbre, amplitude, and spatial location of the sounds and the Buchla synthesizer was was controlled with an array of touch and pressure-sensitive surfaces. Along with Robert Moog’s Moog synthesizer, the Buchla synthesizer helped revolutionize the way electronic music and sound is made.

Working on the Buchla synthesizers led Ciani to eventually open a business which allowed her to subsidise performing commercially with the synthesizer

Performing on the Buchla has nothing to do with a keyboard or with notes,” Ciani explains. “It’s a living compositional form. The Buchla has no memory; you switch from one sound to another manually. It’s spatial and full of movement. It’s architectural.

Ciani’s compositions included many film scores, commercial theme tunes and computer game tracks, some of which included the Star Wars theme, Atari game soundtracks and Xenon, the first arcade pin ball machine to use digitally sampled sound clips.

Click through to the video below in which Ciani appears on the children’s television show 3-2-1 Contact. This is great video for anyone interested in the way a synthesizer works, and Ciani clearly demonstrates how synthetic sounds are made.

Suzanne Ciani is still recording and last year the album a best of album ‘Lixiviation’ was released worldwide. Her back catalogue of releases can be viewed on Finders Keepers records whilst she can also be found on Twitter.

Article by Stefanie Chew

Julianna Barwick Gear Guide


2013 saw the release of Julianna Barwick’s third studio album ‘Nepenthe’ and like her previous albums, The Magic Place and Florine, Nepenthe featured the looping reverb laden vocals that made her earlier tracks so popular.

In the video above, Julianna talks about her recording process and we get a quick glimpse of the products she uses to create her signature style. We also take a closer look at the pedal boards and effects processors being used in her home recording setup.

In the video, Barwick uses an older version of the RC-300, the RC-50, however this model was recently discontinued by Roland and upgraded with the RC-300. The Boss RC-300 is one of BOSS’s most popular loop station pedals and features three synchronized stereo tracks with individual volume knobs and footswitches for each track.Like the RC-50, it’s built in an ultra-durable metal chassis offering 99 memory locations, each with three independent stereo or mono loop phrases.

As demonstrated in the video, a great selling point of these Boss loop stations is the ability to create ongoing loops. The RC-300 gives you the ability to manipulate three stereo phrase tracks simultaneously and with each track supporting multiple overdubs you can record phrase upon phrase on each track resulting in an incredible wall of sound.The improved RC-300 also gives you more than enough space to keep your loops and offers three hours of recording and loop storage.

Read more about the Boss RC-300 here.

If you look closely, the vocal effects in this video are being created by the TC Helicon VoiceTone Create XT. This Vocal Processing and Effects Pedal allows you to add multiple effects to your vocals whilst you perform and record. In this case, the setting most used by Barwick are the luscious reverb effects. Though the Voice Tone Create XT has since been discontinued, you can easily create these vocal effects with a range of vocal processing pedals.

Our favourite is the TC-Helicon Voicetone Mic Mechanic, a simple vocal effects pedal that allows you to add reverb, delay and pitch correction to your vocals. This easy to use pedal features a simple design and is incredibly easy to use. The Mic mechanic features 8 reverb and echo presets with dedicated settings to control room size for reverb and tap and slap settings for delay whilst it also comes with controls for Adaptive EQ, Compression, De-essing and Gating.

Read more about the TC-Helicon Voicetone Mic Mechanic here.

The final component in Julianna’s setup is a portable sampler. In this case, she’s once again chosen Roland and we can see the Roland SP-404 being used to assign samples as she’s recording. Yet again this is an aged model, so we’ll focus on the upgraded product, the SP-404SX. The SP-404SX provides you with the ability to record an endless supply of loops and recording in real-time is made easy with the pattern sequencer which features quantize mode to ensure you record in time. This sampler is great for stacking instrument and vocal sounds and will allow you to continually layer sounds and instruments samples while the SP-404SX continues to loop. You can store 120 patterns (12 patterns x 10 banks) and when you play a pattern with the Pattern Sequencer, the LEDs surrounding the display blink according to the tempo, which is handy during live performance.

Read more about the Roland SP-404SX here

For more information on Julianna Barwick, visit her website here

Stefanie Chew


Guitar And Guitarist Spotting At NAMM With Fender

Guitar And Guitarist Spotting At NAMM With Fender

We saw John Mayer there for sure but there was a number of famous faces and awesome gear on show from Fender at the NAMM Show 2014.

New Tannoy Reveal Monitors In Stock

New Tannoy Reveal Monitors In Stock

Tannoy have long been committed to delivering quality active monitors to engineers and musicians on a budget. Leading the way with great small nearfield monitors. Plenty of the dance producers around our office remember cutting their teeth on a pair of Reveals.

Things have come along way though and Tannoy have moved with the times, using some impressive new tech to get crystal clear, flat response sound from a compact speaker.

Check Out The Reveals At Dolphin

An Early Look At The Universal Audio Apollo Twin

An Early Look At The Universal Audio Apollo Twin


They’ve been pushing the boundaries of analogue audio design for half a century and changing the way we see digital audio for over a decade. UAD bring both together for the Apollo Twin with incredible Realtime Processing and their renowned plugin processing. Get the right sound when recording and treat it later with perfect recreations of vintage, boutique and unique audio hardware in the mix.

Check Out The Apollo Twin

Vintage Echoplex Mojo From Jim Dunlop

Used by tone freaks like Van Halen, Jimmy Page and Eric Johnson the Echoplex delay had a preamp that many guitarists felt made their guitar sound sweeter and thicker. So Jim Dunlop have gone to great lengths to recreate the vintage circuit and deliver it in a handy stomp box.

Blackstar At The NAMM Show 2014

Blackstar At The NAMM Show 2014

There’s not much to go on yet but there is this sweet little teaser of some great sounding guitar.

Johnny Marr On ‘Producing With Your Feet’

Johnny Marr On ‘Producing With Your Feet’

Above is simply one of the best explanations of why multi fx are great, Johnny Marr describes it as "producing with your feet". Don’t let the number of effects overwhelm or dictate your sound, use that big palette to make dramatic changes and hone your perfect tone for the song. Further Johnny defies anyone to tell the difference between the GT-100 and his boutique pedal collection in a blind test, considering the man clearly knows his effects that’s a pretty big thumbs up. The new ME-80 from Boss is a little more compact and affordable but contains some of the COSM amp models and effects from the GT-100.

If you fancy winning a signed T-Shirt With Q Magazine

Or learning about Johnny’s signature guitar

Have A Listen To The New Boss ME-80 Here



Novation Bass Station II - Six Synths Jam!

Novation Bass Station II - Six Synths Jam!

Wolf Lamb Novation
        The Bass Station II has been garnering rave reviews and turning up in loads of pro setups. Wolf & Lamb, Rudimental.
Novation Bass Station
        How does the Bass Station II stack up to the original vintage synth?
Pretty darn well, with greater features, bigger sounds and it’s even more affordable.
Novation Launchpad
        Fancy checking out some more impressive performance vids?
The Novation Launchpad is a phenomenon, incredible scenes inside courtesy of some young musicians with perhaps a little too much time on their hands.

Alt-J Choose sE Microphones

Lance Reynolds is the live sound and studio recording engineer for British band, Alt-J. The four piece who won the Mercury Music Prize in 2012 with their debut album An awesome wave are about to tour America this Christmas after performing to packed out audiences on this years festival circuit.

Alt j recently introduced the sE X1 to their live setup after hunting down a low cost large diaphragm microphone for their recent tour. Though the sE X1 was initially introduced to project vocals, sound engineer Lance Reynolds speaks about how it altered the overall use of microphones in Alt-J’s live setup.

“I’ve used the sE X1 as an overhead, I’ve used it as an audience mic and I’ve tried it on guitar and bass cabinets. It seems to be all- purpose, and seems to work on just about anything you put it on.” Reynolds has even been using the sE X1 as an audience mix for the in-ear monitor mix, “Often, a little pencil mic is too focused. The sE X1’s give it the bigger picture.”

The sE X1 has become a favourite for Reynolds and since introducing it into the Alt-J live setup, the mic has been used with almost every instrument onstage. Reynolds has recently begun using the sE X1 with a couple of toy glockenspiels as well as hats and overheads and has nothing but praise for the se X1 model.

“All these sE microphones seem to do what they need to do on anything I’ve put them on,”.

Since becoming a fan of sE mics, Reynolds has also experimented with other models;

“I tried the sE4400a on a guitar amp, mostly as a recording source, but ended up using it a lot as an overhead, like a drum ‘picture’ type thing. To my ear, the 4400a is similar to the X1 and the sE2200a, but it has a smoother top end and just seems bigger.”
Reynolds has also experimented with the VooDoo VR1 dynamic mic and he recently used this model on an Alt-J guitar amp. Reynolds states; “I put it on a guitar amp and it sounded beautiful, it just sounded huge, almost too big for my live mix.”

For more information about Alt-J visit the band’s Facebook Page
Click here for more information about the sE electronics microphone range.
Article by Stefanie Chew

New Skindred Album ‘Kill The Power’ recorded with sE Electronics

James Loughrey is a producer, engineer and mixer who’s worked alongside a long list of artists such as Def leppard, Lionel Ritchie and Bjork. After starting his career as a studio assistant, he moved on to secure a job at Britannia Row Studios where he honed his engineer, mixing and producing skills. James talked to Se Electronics about his current role, recording and producing on future releases with My Vitriol and Skindred.

Fans of Skindred‘s music will be familiar with with their distinct style; Loud, gritty guitar riffs and heavy thrash percussion. James explains how the sE Voodoo VR2 and a pair of sE Rupert Neve RN17‘s were used when recording the bands upcoming album ‘Kill The Power’.

"I’ve used sE mics to record the latest Skindred album - the guitars wouldn’t be the same without them" he starts, he continues to explain why he chose the sE electronics over other brands stating "I use them to record heavy guitars as they give an amazing amount of bottom end. I also use them for percussion and anything else that is ‘roomy’" explains James.

The sE Voodoo VR2 active ribbon mic captures frequencies from 20Hz to 20KHz and emits a detailed clear and natural sound which is known to work superbly with a wide range of instruments. James mentioned how impressed he’s been with the mic stating "I’ve used various sE microphones and I strongly believe they are well made products that you can take into any recording environment".

James explains further how he chooses to use the microphones in a live setup, "When miking a 4X12 cab, i use the sE Voodoo VR2 directly onto the cones and phase align them which results in the VR2 giving me warmth,".He continues, "If you place the voodoo VR2 at a 30 degree angle on the cone it helps with the high transients. They are really useful high gain ribbons- I’ve used the Royer R121 and the VR2 comes out tops against it!". 

sE Voodoo VR2 Ribbon Mic Features

  • Diaphragm 2 aluminium ribbon
  • Frequency Response: 20Hz-18KHz
  • Sensitivity: 10mV/Pa -40 ¡À 1.5dB
  • Polar Pattern: Figure 8
  • Impedance: ¡Ü 200 Ohms
  • Equivalent Noise Level: 20dB(A weighted)
  • Max SPL for 0.5% [email protected]: 135dB
  • Power Requirement: Phantom power 48V¡À4V
  • Connector: 3-pin
      For more information, check out the VooDoo VR2 on the Dolphin Website

Take a listen to Skindred’s lead track from the forthcoming album ‘Kill The Power’, released in 2014 and find more information via their website

Article by Stefanie Chew

Behind the Scenes: Will.I.Am and Novation Launchkey

When it comes to Synthesizers, Novation are up there with the best and many artists are turning to their ever increasing range of MIDI synthesizers and innovative control surfaces to perform live.
In this article, we’re focusing on the Novation Launchkey range, a series of 25,49 and 61 note controller keyboards. These controller keyboards are becoming increasingly popular with musicians and DJ’s as they easily integrate with DAWs such as Ableton live, allowing you to trigger and control samples, easily slotting them into your live set.

Will.I.Am is one of a number of artists whose live show has been enhanced by the use of the Novation range. After performing with backing tracks for recent tours, the singer recently decided he wanted to change his live setup. His decision to have all sounds performed live resulted in extra musicians being called upon.

Keith Harris is the musician that recreated Will.I.Am’s live setup and his current role is to prepare all music, digital audio and live equipment for Will.I am’s performances.

"It’s important to have lots of control at my fingertips. My Launchkey 25 packs loads of features into a compact size, and the Launchpad is my main session controller. Both are really robust: perfect for life on the road." Keith uses Novation Launch controllers to power three live rigs. In Keith’s drum setup, for example, his Launchkey 25 and Launchpad were both positioned within arms reach — nestled among his drum pads, sound modules and cymbals — giving him complete control over his Ableton session.

Keith talks about Novation stating its also his first choice when it comes to recording, "I love Novation gear. In my studio, I have the Impulse and SL MkII controllers, plus the MiniNova. They are an irreplaceable part of my powerhouse". The picture below shows how Keith has integrated Novation equipment into his home studio.

The Launchkey controller keyboards carry upto 50 physical controls and 16 velocity-sensitive three-colour launch pads to control clips and allow expressive playing in the drum rack.The video below gives you an example of how it can be used to perform alongside Ableton.

Check out our range of Novation Launckey Controller Keyboards today.

Eddie Mapp Live Sound With Paramore & Evanescence

Eddie Mapp Live Engineer Paramore Evanescence

Eddie Mapp Live Sound With Paramore & Evanescence

After speaking with his mate Ken ‘Pooch’ Van Druten Eddie was converted to the sound of sE Electronics for guitar are crucial part of the sound for big live acts like Paramore. He’s not alone though engineers for Queens Of The Stone Age, Linkin Park, Aerosmith and Black Sabbath are all getting on board, whether it’s deep, smoky ribbons or precise, huge sounding condenser mics. The use of reflection filters has changed the game too, minimising unwanted ambience and keeping a dry sound for larger arenas.

sE Electronics - Big Guitars And Drums On Stage And In The Studio


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