2017 Talks

Making of Bolero Electronica

Amin Bhatia on the creation of Bolero Electronica using a 75 year history of synthesizers.

The 15-minute “Bolero Electronica” was realized with the help of Steve Porcaro and Patrick Moraz, and is a ride through the generations of synthesizers from the old days until the present, as much paying a tribute to both the late Bob Moog as the history of synthesisers.” – Bert Strolenberg – sonicimmersion.org

Amin Bhatia

Emmy nominated composer Amin Bhatia has been both a synth programmer and a film score composer for over 30 years. His prizes at the Roland Worldwide Synthesizer competitions won him international fame in his youth, leading to projects with David Foster and Steve Porcaro.

His “Interstellar Suite” (Capitol/Cinema) became a landmark album for analog synthesizers when he created an orchestral epic without using any samplers. The sequel “Virtuality” was the first album to be endorsed by the Bob Moog Foundation. Of note is “Bolero Electronica”, Ravel’s masterpiece performed on 75 years of synthesizers in chronological order.

Though he now uses real players and orchestral ensembles in his writing, his days with a Roland sequencer and a Minimoog have given him an unusual insight into the subtleties of arranging and orchestration for both real and imagined instruments.

His tv scoring credits include “Anne with an E”, “Flashpoint” and “X Company”.  Film credits include “Iron Eagle II” and “John Woo’s Once a Thief” as well as several IMAX features for award winning director David Lickley.

Amin has consulted for many synthesizer companies including Roland, Arturia, Spectrasonics and Sequential.

Swimming in Analog

Toronto Producer Douglas Romanow will open up a few of his recent album tracks to talk about his approach with synthesizers in contemporary track production.

Douglas Romanow

Record Producer/ Mixer/Songwriter at Aporia Records and Bluewater Music Group.
Musical Director for Canadian Country Music Awards.

Record Producer 🇨🇦🇺🇸 Kinnie Starr /Nightmare Air / Garjana / Nicole Rayy / Alessia Cohle / Theatre of Hate.

Engineering credits include: Justin Bieber, Johnny Reid, Chantal Kreviazuk, Divine Brown, Tyga, Nexus Percussion.

Additional Record Producer credits include: Stegall, Midnight Shine, Paige Cobain Kopp, Jef Kearns, Ori Dagan, Amy McConnell & William Sperandei, Errol Lee, Videoman, Aria Tesolin, The Trade-Offs, Chase Aden, Mrs. Johnston, Michael Pickett, The Sattalites, Danny Brooks, Hunter Brothers, Wind May Do Damage, The Immigrants, Erin Haley, Ann Vriend.

Douglas regularly participates as a panelist at music conferences, including Canadian Music Week, Breakout West and Canadian Country Music Week. At several events, he has presented the interactive workshop, “Behind the Glass, An Insider’s Look at Record Production.”​ He is known for his musicality, his clear and amiable leadership style, his vast synth collection and his dry sense of humour. He proudly lives in Toronto, Ontario, with his wife and two daughters.

Performing and Touring with Modular Synths

With 2 decades of experience Christina Sealey (ORPHX) knows a thing or two about the joys and pitfalls of touring with these wonderful and unique instruments.  Christina is also performing at our Saturday evening concert!

Christina Sealey

Christina Sealey has been creating electronic and experimental music for over two decades, primarily as part of the long-running industrial techno project Orphx (with Richard Oddie). In the studio and on the stage, Christina’s work is characterized by tactile instruments and hands-on methods: tape loops, contact microphones, homemade instruments, and modular synthesizers (as recently featured in the documentary I Dream of Wires). In recent years, Christina has been playing powerful and eclectic DJ sets that combine techno, industrial, electro, EBM, disco, and other sources from the history of electronic music.

Integrating Software with Your Modular World

Joe Byer (v01d) will discuss the integration between DAWs and the modular synth world. Using Expert Sleepers’ Silent Way software, he’ll demonstrate how to sync, control and even achieve polyphony on a Eurorack modular synth. Performance tips and tricks will also include some nifty iOS software that will unleash creative sound exploration.

Joe Byer

Joe has been experimenting with electronic music for over 20 years, starting with a sampler while in high school and even learning the ropes of modular synthesis on the Buchla 200 during his years at OCAD.  Joe has been involved in the electro-industrial scene playing keyboards for Ayria and offering remixes for acts like Angelspit and Interlace, all while working on his own solo project v01d (including a recent album release!) Having recently delved into the world of Eurorack modular synthesis, Joe’s performance will be an experimental minimal techno combining his personal Eurorack setup with Ableton Live sequencing.

Building a TTSH – ARP 2600 Clone

Steve (The Doc) Castellano is one of our most popular speakers and has spoken at every Toronto Sound Festival to date.  Take a look through the photos of past events he’s easy to spot!  For this talk Steve will talk about the history of the ARP 2600 and walk us through his build of the TTSH ARP 2600 Clone and give us a little demonstration!  This particular synth has only been seen in public once before and by all accounts (including that of the writer) sounds incredible!

Steve Castellano

Steve is a writer and musician currently living in Toronto. He took up classical piano at the age of 8 and acquired his first analogue synthesizer when he was 14. At he 17 moved to Toronto where he studied composition under James Tenney and electronic music under Phil Werren at York University. He currently performs and records on a 520 hp Eurorack modular system augmented with an Elektron Octatrack, Moog Sub 37, and a TTSH ARP 2600 clone. You can listen to his music at stevecastellano.bandcamp.com.

808 101

Dustin Good will be taking us through a history of the classic 808 drum machine, the SH-01 and their impact on modern music.  Saturday night Dustin will be performing music from his new project, Kor!

Dustin Good

Dustin has been an active member of the Toronto synthesizer community for many years. He is a multi-instrumentalist who has embraced electronic instruments as tools for improvisation and sonic exploration.

Distortion: A Historic and Technical Perspective

Sunil Solanki takes a look at the historical development and uses of distortion in music, along with a technical analysis of different types of distortion. Musical examples will be used to illustrate and help demonstrate these concepts.

Sunil Solanki

Sunil Solanki has been involved with electronic music for over 20 years. Starting out with hardware he then moved 100% in the box as computers and DAWs rose to prominence. However, over the last 5 years he’s come back to a completely hardware setup with 12u of eurorack, multiple monosynths and samplers and far too many drum machines and effects pedals. He produces music under the AndroidDreams moniker. Please visit instagram for details – Android_dreams_aphex.