Maximillian features a DIY electrified drum set aptly named "Maximillian." The kit consists of an orange leather Maximillian suitcase with other ad hoc drums permanently attached with various pickups for each sound.
Maximillian is also the first piece written for the drum set - it features expressive and experimental live looping.
DIY drumset from vintage suitcase and live-looping project Visit my shrine to Maximillian:

Maximillian features a DIY electrified drum set aptly named "Maximillian." The kit consists of an orange leather Maximillian suitcase with other ad hoc drums permanently attached with various pickups for each sound. Each of the drums on the kit are connected to an audio interface for individual processing.

In the first ever piece written for Maximillian, we decided to use only the live sounds of the drums. Constantly shifting tempi and effects set the tone for the introductory section. We recorded a number of live loops during this section to add to the gradually building texture (note: this performance contains no fixed media).

Over time, the loops transform into a groove to which the drummer adapts. The live drums feature various sonic shaping tools for more pronounced texture. Various features of the loops and the live soloist reveal arrays of sound locked in this suitcase for years before this project.

The groove devolves to an ambient exploration of the kit's sonic possibilities as the piece concludes.

On a purely technical note, the kit features:
- one mid-20th century Maximillian suitcase with BD mic suspended inside
- one rototom with snare attached, snare drum mic
- one lower hi-hat with rice cooker upper hi-hat (piezo elements on each
- two muted cowbells with piezo elements underneath
- one rototom with tom mic
- one spring table with various implements including two spring reverb units, toy piano tines, door stoppers, an aluminum heat sink, and various springs
- one Keith McMillen BopPad with custom M4L device sampler
- one MOTU UltraLite for all of the above inputs

All of the processing was performed in real time using Ableton Live, Max for Live, and ClyphX Pro.

This recording features Kevin Dacey on drums.

Curator note Maker Park Radio is a volunteer-run, non-profit community internet radio broadcasting from Staten Island, NYC. is dedicated to providing free music and live arts programming 24 hours a day. They reached out to a few of our MMF makers and engaged in conversation around the maker, their project, their inspirations and more.

DJ Jim Murphy (@onetimeforyourmindradio) Meets the Maker Ramon Castillo (@autumnateeverything) - recorded live Monday, May 16th, at 11:00am ET - check out the INTERVIEW.

Ramon Castillo : maker, composer, Minecraft world builder, programmer, visual designer, arranger
Ramon Castillo, DMA, is an Associate Teaching Professor of Music at UMass Lowell.
He teaches a number of technology courses including Music and Sound for Games, Digital Synthesis and Remixing, Survey of Music Technology, and Computers in Music Business.
For the Composition for New Media program, he teachers Contemporary Styles and Analysis, Sound Narrative, and Applied Composition.
He directs the Contemporary Electronic Ensemble and founded the upcoming Video Game Ensemble (to debut Fall 2022).

His creative output combines Minecraft, Ableton Live, guitar, live looping, signal processing, and sound reactive visuals - prepared specifically for expressive live performance.
Many performances feature highly automated looping made possible by an extensive array of programming. The system, built in Ableton Live, Max for Live, and Clyphx Pro can create layers and effects that a standard looping environment can’t.
The concepts and techniques were born from a series of experiments in 2011.
His compositional and creative career relies on Ableton Live, Max, and arrays of hardware. Ramon has developed many live performance techniques involving custom software interfaces, DIY hardware, and high levels of automation including asymmetric loop triggers and audio quantization.

Connect with Ramon Castillo
How I can help you:
I am an educator specializing in experimental composition and performance. I love to discuss advanced features in Ableton Live and Max for Live. I am more than happy to teach the techniques I use in live performance.
How you can help me:
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Engage in geeky tech conversations with me.