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'Stranger Things' composers on the Seaboard RISE
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'Stranger Things' composers on the Seaboard RISE

ROLI recently caught up with electronic composers Michael Stein and Kyle Dixon. The duo are widely recognised for their dark & deeply nostalgic soundtrack to the Netflix series Stranger Things. Between them, they have a substantial collection of vintage synthesizers and analogue equipment that are instrumental to their retro-futuristic sound. The pair also use new technologies alongside the old to give their music a modern edge. Michael explains how the Seaboard RISE is a big part this, and how it has helped to shape their music:

“I always like to have the Seaboard RISE out when I watch the first pass or director’s cut of Stranger Things. I pick a certain sound palette in Equator and just poke around on it. I often use the ribbon below the keys on the RISE so I don’t rely on muscle memory while I watch. It’s a fantastic mood board that helps me discover new keys. I can experiment until I hear a note that fits, then I look down to see what I’m playing.” - Michael Stein.

The Seaboard RISE’s multi-touch surface naturally invites more organic experimentation with pitch and expression. You can hear examples of this this in the atmospheric note glides and jarring note intervals on the soundtrack of both series. Michael also uses the RISE and it's miniature counterpart, the Seaboard Block, with MPE (MIDI Polyphonic Expression) enabled apps:

"I’m also really looking forward to using the RISE with the Deckard’s Dream synthesizer, which is MPE compatible! The Seaboard is bound to work its way into more of my work.”

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This new blog is presented by the team at Sound Technology Ltd, a leading distributor of musical instruments and pro audio equipment in the UK and ROI.