stand in the place where you live

I had a nice road trip, a good visit with my parents and Thanksgiving and birthday and all of that. I didn’t want to go back to the routine. So… let’s say it’s not a routine, it’s a continuing journey?

Things I like (in no particular order):

  • Mountains.
  • Driving, up to a point.
  • Getting to see my parents! And generally just talking to people who I like and haven’t seen in a while.
  • Cats.
  • Good food. Aside from a relatively traditional Thanksgiving meal (with some great sides) we had a good stir for my birthday dinner, some tasty breakfasts (blueberry french toast!) and desserts (pumpkin cake!).
  • A break from routine.

Things I don’t:

  • A really long drive all in one day.
  • Aggressive drivers. But to be fair, I feel like the St. Louis area has more than its share of enraged primates who think they have to prove their manhood behind the wheel — my #1 argument in favor of self-driving cars.
  • The weird stuff my digestive system does to me when traveling.
  • TV news (and all-day TV in general).

A common topic among synth folks is “mise en place” in one’s home studio — having gear set up on stands/shelves/etc., ergonomically placed and ready to play. It can be a challenge in a small space with many different needs and gear that comes in radically different sizes and shapes.

My parents’ birthday gift to me was a laptop DJ stand I’d asked for, and I’ve been trying some different layouts. The current one has some compromises:

  • The upright bar of the new stand is in front of the Minibrute 2S. It’s not 100% in the way, but I need to try patching and playing it to decide if that’s going to bother me. Unfortunately there aren’t too many other places I can put the new stand without a more radical rearrange.
  • The Model:Cycles is atop that, pretty high up and at a flatter angle than I’d like (so it’s not in the way of the MB2S…) I need to see if it’s playable like this.
  • My LCD monitor is shoved back more into the corner so the second, laptop-holder arm can extend in front of it with just barely enough clearance for the Launchpad X. I think that will work.

If not, the most likely thing is a KVGear Adapt L2 stand, which should fit the Minibrute on one tier and 1-2 other pieces of gear on the other. That is a less ideal playing angle for something like the Launchpad, but other stuff should be fine there. I’ll only go this route if the current setup bugs me, though.

Trying to solve for this set of gear just makes me think: where I would I set up a Strega if I got one? How about the other gear I have that rarely/never gets to have any fun anymore (the Wavedrum, theremin, bass, lap steel, acoustic instruments etc.)? This sort of thing almost makes me want to go back to 100% software.

Okay, not really… but that makes a good segue. VCV Rack 2 was just released, and the paid version can run as a VST plugin. I am considering it, as another extension of the modular. Replacement of hardware modules is really not a goal, but then, if I let go of 60HP of stuff I can put a Strega where the Pod60 is.


I am pretty happy with the current state of the next album. I’ll record a couple more things and see what fits where, but I really could just master it and release it now and be satisfied. If I prioritized it, I think I really could finish 9 albums rather than 8 for the year… but let’s not be hasty.

I’m starting to consider my goals and plans for next year. I think I’m going to put some non-synth musical efforts into that list. More on that in the coming days.

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