Commodore 64 & Theremin à la Martinland | Martin Schemitsch (A)



Diskette jockey Martin Schemitsch plays chip music from the legendary C64 and accompanies himself on the theremin

The setup speaks for itself:
C-64 (breadbin w/ SID 6581), 1541 Ultimate (batch 1 w/ acrylic case), Small JVC portable colour CRT TV/Monitor CX-60ME, self-assembled Moog Music Etherwave Theremin Kit, Line 6 DL4 (stomp box delay and loop sampler), Linus Live GL-205 (ground-loop isolator), Yamaha Stagepas 300 mixing console, and a Yamaha VP-50ST volume pedal

Still alive and kicking, the C64 scene has surprised us for three decades by reinventing itself in terms of graphics, composition, animation, and coding. This also applies to the legendary, three-voiced hybrid SID chip, which, thanks to such a long time span, has developed new sound possibilities, though it has not changed since its original conception in 1982.

The playlist consists of current and classic pieces from the second, contemporary phase of music production with the C64 from 1991 to 2011.

Soddy Circles, Hein Holt (2005), Meanwhile the Planet, TBB (1997), L-Forza Remix, Glenn Rune Gallefoss (2009), The Product, Glenn Rune Gallefoss (2006), Apparatus, Psycho (2011), Freestyler, Agemixer (2002), Ride the High Country, Linus (2006), Paranoia (For Insider), The Syndrom (1994), Evil Within, Glenn Rune Gallefoss (2006), Squirting Squid, Hein Holt (2005), Rubicon, Jeroen Tel & Reyn Ouwehand (1991)

Martin “Martinland” Schemitsch

Following studies in humanities and modern languages (with initial, self-motivated forays into computer programming), violin lessons, early self-acquired piano and cartoon skills and techniques, studies in (pure) mathematics and specialization in 3D-computer animation (motivated by my development of a computer-animated sequence for a feature film for Michael Haneke), in particular “character animation”, the three pillars of “Martinland” eventually emerged as animation, drawings, and music – cemented by an interdisciplinary interest in constructs that tie these elements together.

I was drawn to the theremin as a result of countless musical phases and an enthusiasm for musical autonomy. Big symphonic scores for movie sound tracks and their special demands and esthetics led – via the application of the theremin in “The Day the Earth Stood Still” – to my interest in this oldest, most noncontact and thus hardest to play electronic instrument and its inventor.