Synthfarm, India’s premier residency for synthesis, modular sound and electronic music learning. The residency, set inside lush tropical settings in Dattapukur West Bengal, is a three day bi-annual summit now in it’s third year. This year synthfarm completed it’s 5th edition with over 20 attendees and faculty from India, Spain and Switzerland. Synthfarm is built on ‘inclusive and community’ ethics, to liberate knowledge and learning experiences in the field of electronic music and related technology.
SYNTHFARM EDITION 5 FEBRUARY 9/10/11 : 2018.
The ‘circuit makers course’ by 5Volts (Varun Desai) produced 6 synthesizers, titled the ‘Poca-Synth’ put together by the attendees over a period of 10 hours. The Poca-Synth kits and circuitry is a result of an inter-city collaboration between Varun (Kolkata) and A.F.A (Animal Factory Amplification)based in Mumbai. The Poca-Synths are inspired by the cult Atari Punk Consoles (late 1980s). Matt Black of Coldcut fame and one half of the seminal UK based label Ninja Tunes, presented his latest project, titled ‘Ninja Jam’ : An IOS based app which creates instant music using samples and loop sequencing.
Synthfarm edition 5 also featured the first Indian modular synthesizer system built by Dhvanit and Richard from Modular Analog based in Mumbai. The modular systems built by these two bright entrepreneurs was a key attraction for many of the attendees at the residency as well a moment of pride for all the Indian synthesizer community. Cognitive Science of Sound, a new module introduced by Audio Pervert aimed at decrypting the mental and psychological aspects of music. POL and Da Saz presented detailed courseware about analog synthesis, randomization in ableton and modular synthesis building blocks. The ‘Live Studio’ sessions, over 3 days resulted in 5 plus hours of recorded content.
Whether you are an aspiring Producer, DJ, Sound Engineer, Modular-Freak or Synth-Geek or Tech-nerd, Synthfarm is an unique opportunity to learn, enhance and share your skills. The spirit of the residency fosters a ‘ Do-It-Yourself ‘ ideology. To unlock and share knowledge via a series of interactive courses spread over 3 days and nights.
Be it beginner or pro-level, Synthfarm offers a diverse range of courses as well as experience based lessons about electronic music and related technology. Synthfarm is a non-profit organization set up by Varun Desai and SamratB in 2015 along-with Lionel Dentan as the principle curators. Synthfarm has initiated a program for empowerment of women in electronic music within the existing framework of the residency. A host of Indian and international producers and experts in the field of electronic contribute to the faculty of Synthfarm.
At synthfarm we are dedicated to the resurgence of modular synthesizers. The art and the charm of making esoteric sounds. The Modular course-ware features a range of ‘Eurorack’ synthesizers and sequencers in action. In-depth exploration of the VCO, VCA, Filters, Clock, Generative and analog sequencers is at the heart of the course. A series of ‘hands-on’ presentations, lectures, patching exercises and performance sessions are included in this section.
The Live Space
The Live Space is a hearty collection of analog and digital synthesizers, drum-machines, effects and midi-sequencers, all wired into the main mixing desk. Fostering a ‘plug & play’ spirit, the Live Space features expert faculty explaining many basic and practical aspects of setting up and operating a studio. We encourage students to understand and discover the spontaneous nature of synthesizers. The courseware also includes Improv-sessions, patch building and 1-on-1 problem solving.
Software based Music Production is indeed a vast subject and we concentrate on the basic building blocks as well as unique nomenclatures to produce sound & music. The courseware centers around Ableton Live as a working canvas, yet the visiting faculty for this section presents specific and esoteric knowledge: building beats or tweaking synths or playing with randomness or creating workflow, the Music Production courseware encourages creativity and spontaneity via software.
The Synth-Makers course at Synthfarm is our newest addition at the residency to promote DIY ethics. We are building basic yet fun synthesizers, designed and made in India! A step-by-step introduction into basic electronics, components and soldering : steadily assembling a ready-to-use synthesizer. Curated by 5Volts, the course focusses at demystifying circuits as well encouraging participants to build interesting and inexpensive little sound-machines to take home !