Artist Collection: Cristian Vogel Bitwig Lab II
A most influential producer and music innovator of the modern age, Cristian Vogel’s name has found pride of place amongst the catalogues of definitive techno labels and experimental outlets. Namely, throughout the ‘90s, there were albums on Tresor, Mille Plateaux and NovaMue, with more dance oriented wares finding their way through Force Inc., Ferox and the Super_Collider collaboration with Jamie Lidell.
More recently too Vogel has been tracing the outskirts of abstract dance music via a stream of records for Berlin’s Shitkatapult, and alongside his current side-project NEL for EPM Music, he’s been keeping his more abstract productions deep in the ether of clandestine platforms like SubRosa and The Tapeworm.
With his installation work and independent research modules in composition, stage and club culture, and studio, furthermore, he’s become one in the fold helping us at Bitwig to push the boundaries of its modular mechanics, preset design and software evolution.
"All of these presets should work as an example to people who are interested in knowing what they can do with their audio."
Bitwig’s first artist package in 2015 was 'Cristian Vogel Bitwig Lab', and continuing this collaboration with the release of 'Cristian Vogel Bitwig Lab II'. “The main thing is to feel inspired, feel curious,” says Vogel of these 31 tailor-made presets he’s designed for Bitwig’s latest update. “When I saw the new Sampler I thought this is great,” as the updated Sampler and general modulators made for more integrated frameworks this time around.
Signal splitting and the atomisation of sound proves a focal point of 'Cristian Vogel Bitwig Lab II', he explains: “when you come new to a system like Bitwig, with its graphic language and ideas, you begin to explore presets to understand more about the way the whole thing works.”
Exploring Multi-Wavetable synthesis, Time Indexing techniques and Frame Shifting possibilities — Vogel’s word play in helping define the technology’s unlimited prowess — has found expressions in spacescape presets, ranging from quiet ambiences to cosmic rattles. And, of these designations, it’s the dozen plus Vector Stretching presets that have inspired Vogel most, with Cristian Vogel Bitwig Lab II coming at a time when the artist’s own work is exploring extensive stereo, multi-speaker and spatial- amplification techniques.
“These Vector Stretching presets used an XY vector modulator; this is a 2D modulator and really interesting because it has a high dimensionality,” he says. “I loved the way I was able to build these shapes in 2D. All of these presets should work as an example to people who are interested in knowing what they can do with their audio,” Vogel explains. “Instead of playing it or looping it,” he says, “you can scrub it and turn it into little grains.”
“For me, presets are starting points. They are like a map.”
Entering low Earth orbit is easy. To get Cristian Vogel Bitwig Lab II up and running:
1. Open Bitwig Studio.
2. Go to the Dashboard (by clicking the Bitwig icon at the top of the window).
3. Navigate to the Packages page. Then click on the Artist Collection, where you can find 'Cristian Vogel Bitwig Lab II'.
4. Click the Install button.
5. In Bitwig's Pop-up Browser, type "Vogel" in the search field to quickly find the content.
6. Let the journey begin.
Note: When browsing, realize any of these presets display description text when selected in the Pop-up Browser. And each preset has several pages of remote controls so do navigate thru those knob pages.