Wednesday 26 July 2017

Niall Byrne: Daithi gets in the loop

Daithí O'Dronaí released an iPhone app to let downloaders play with loops of his songs
Daithí O'Dronaí released an iPhone app to let downloaders play with loops of his songs

Niall Byrne

Not a week goes by without another musician dreaming up a great way to use digital media to promote their music. Last week, it was former Golden Silvers singer Gwilym Gold with his own mobile non-static non-linear mobile app format Bronze in which the song is never heard the same way twice.

The same could be true for this week's digitally minded musician, Daithí O'Dronaí, the Galway fiddle player and runner-up in Sky One's Must Be The Music programme, who released the rather fine Embrace EP a couple of months back.

Daithí's music is notable for his style which incorporates loopstations, Kaoss Pads, drum machines, synths and his trusty fiddle to loop up arrangements into a full-bodied song both live and on record. So it would seem a perfect fit for Daithí to release an iPhone app, which offers downloaders the opportunity to play with loops of his songs in real-time.

The app has a remix function in which you are offered the opportunity to remix his song Pool. In an interface that will be familiar to those who use music-making software such as Reason, Fruity Loops or Ableton, the screen has 15 different buttons and each one triggers a loop from the song.

You can sequence these loops at will, all in time with the song's time signature, bringing in parts of the song and dropping others out. You can also apply delay and equaliser effects as you go.

It's a great fun bit of software. The app was developed with the help of Galway interactive music company Rocudo who have developed an online remix platform with an emphasis on mobile and social networking for musicians.

"At the end of the day it makes you stand out from the crowd and that's what matters most," Daithí says, emphasising the promotional push of such technologies.

iPhone users can get the Daithí app for €1.59.

If we needed any more proof that new media companies are the new rock'n'roll ever since Kanye and Katy Perry turned up in Facebook offices last year, well look what happened in Facebook's European HQ in Dublin last week. Bell X1 played a gig on the roof of the building and the big surprise was that the social network founder Mark Zuckerberg himself was in the audience.

Normally it's the band that would be meeting fans, but the band approached Zuckerberg after the gig and gave him a copy of their latest album. You can watch the gig at vimeo.com/bellx1live.

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