Rob Masterton of Super Magic Hats

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Rob Masterton of Super Magic Hats


What piece of equipment do you have to show us today?

My Vocaloid – a singing voice synthesizer that uses recordings of fragments extracted from real singing voices and processes these with various filters and dynamics to create synthesised vocals.


How did you come across this particular item?

I was checking out some music shops in Shibuya when I was over in Japan in 2014 and saw that they had Vocaloid set up on a computer. So I asked for a demo and got completely sold on it.


What is it that you like so much about it?

I like the cold, digital sound it can make and the feeling that this can impart to music. I like being able to chop up vocals and affect them to the ninth degree without the feeling that I am stepping on a vocalists toes.


How do you use it, and how has it shaped the way you write music?

It became really central to the sound of my album, because I wanted to push a few more vocal ideas to the forefront with these tracks. For someone who can’t really sing at all, it gives me the ability to use vocals that I create on my own tracks, rather than trying to fit in samples (which can be really fun) or trying to get friends to collaborate (which can also be fun, but tends to lack the immediacy of being able to open a program and go). It’s given me that ability to throw down vocal ideas relatively quickly, and means that I can incorporate this as part of my songwriting process rather than vocals being
 an afterthought or something that are written and produced separately and then retro fitted.


When’s the next show?

I just finished up a show at The Toff, so now I’m probably going into hibernation. 


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