Outersect is Rob Rayle, a San Francisco Bay Area based audio technologist, composer and producer of genre-bending psychedelic electronic music that synergizes psychill, techno-bluegrass, and 70s progressive rock styles. Inspired by sights and sounds from around the world, Outersect fuses acoustic instruments and sounds with digital production to emerge with his own unique sonic experience. Outersect’s ‘one-man electronic jam band’ shows include live keyboard improvisation and sound loops to inspire ecstasy on the dance floor and auditory bliss.
Outersect has jammed live with Hallucinogen (Simon Posford) and shared the bill with Shpongle, Ott, Gaudi, Bluetech, Shulman, Phutureprimitive, and other pioneering electronic acts. Outersect performs regularly in the San Francisco Bay Area and has played in all the major West Coast festivals in the US including Symbiosis Gathering, Earthdance, Mystic Garden Party, Beloved Festival, Stilldream Festival, and Gemini Festival. Internationally, Outersect has performed in Israel, Spain, Mexico and Thailand.
Outersect is also a master of the Serge Modular, a rare and extremely powerful analog synthesizer, and the Kyma system. He is also an expert in physical modeling synthesis of acoustic musical instruments and has written his own special software, the Outersect Modeler, for emulating the behavior of acoustic instruments.
He has just released his new EP and video, “Kinnari,” a project that Keyframe-Entertainment is proud to support.
How did you come up with the concept for the Kinnari EP and music video?
Back in the day (late 90s – early 00s) it wasn’t at all unusual to see dancers spinning fire at underground parties. The electric flow toys didn’t exist at all back then, so they weren’t even an option. If you were throwing an outdoor on a beach or something, or if you had an indoor/outdoor space with like a paved courtyard or something like that, the fire dancers would just show up. Everybody would stand around and watch people spin fire while they were grooving.
This doesn’t happen so much anymore. People bring electric toys and play with them, but that doesn’t grab people’s attention the same way that fire spinning does. There are still fire spinning crews that go out and practice all night on beaches, yes, but it seems like they are not integrated into the whole EDM party scene the way they once were. It is pretty difficult to find indoor spaces where it is possible to spin fire at all. Everybody is very scared of fire now because of the Ghostship tragedy. So I wanted to show the connection between spinning fire and the electric flow toys that you see almost everywhere now. I wanted to recreate that vibe of those parties where people would show up and spin fire with others dancing around them watching.
The initial idea went something like this … somehow four primitive tribal people end up in the middle of a party with all these moderns in futuristic gear spinning electric toys. It was supposed to feel a bit like the Time Warp party scene from Rocky Horror, with the four fire dancers taking the roles of Brad & Janet. The primitives don’t know what to do so they start spinning fire. All the modern types put down their electric toys and watch in stunned amazement. Eventually they all make friends and it becomes just a party.
Then “the tale grew in the telling.” How do the primitives end up at this party? Where does the fire come from? So it turned into this thing where the people do communal magic which opens a wormhole to a fire goddess who sends her fire faeries thru the wormhole to dance … or something like that.
How do you describe your style of music?
In terms of well known styles my music probably fits best into the categories of psychedelic dub and/or global bass. It’s tricky though because I experiment with different styles all the time. I am always trying to take something from column A and something else from column B and turn that into something new. So I have experimented with fusing bluegrass sounds with breakbeat, with fusing big band jazz sounds from the 1920s with House, with rock from the late 60s with whatever, … and so on. I tend to hit a little of all of that in my sets.
What inspires you?
Good music, good parties, good loving of course. What really gets to me is when I see a group of people come together to make something happening – communal co-creation.
What gear do you use to produce music and perform live?
My recording and editing is all done on Pro Tools these days. I think that’s a little unusual for electronic artists – everybody seems to be on Ableton now. I was writing code for Pro Tools and the S6 console from like 2010 to 2016, so I got lots of great gear from them for little or nothing. I had an S6 console in my studio for much of that time but I downsized to the S3L when I left Avid & had to return their S6.
Almost all the analog sounds in my recent music come from two synthesizers these days: a 3 panel Serge Modular system and a Moog Voyager. I also have 2 original Korg MS-20s from the 1970s (signed in Sharpie on the keyboards by Simon Posford) & Kokopele – a one-of-a-kind synthesizer built by the late great Chuck Fischer. These are all modular or semi modular synths which can be patched together into one gigantic beastie when needed.
I use the Kyma software synthesizer for many of my digital sounds. I use physical modeling software that I wrote myself for the surrealistic acoustic-ish instrument sounds. I also use Reaktor, Kontakt, & Massive a bit.
For my live sets, my minimal rig is a Nord Modular G2 & a laptop. I like to bring out more gear when I can, but every additional piece complicates things a lot.
What has been the greatest reward in your career as an electronic producer?
I connected with a bunch of very interesting people as a result of my music. There are people I have been friends with for a couple decades now as a result of doing this. Some of those people are in this video. All those good people have been and continue to be the greatest and longest lasting reward of doing this thing.
What exciting things do you have planned for the future?
There is going to be another music video coming out in a few months that will be just fire performances. There were so many great performances from Kinnari that we just didn’t have time to show that need to be seen. That will be coming out first on my YouTube channel first – look for it there.
I am working on some new classically influenced EDM. I expect to release a few tracks of that nature within a few months.
Eventually I am going to release a physical modeling software synthesizer that I use to create many of the unique sounds you hear in my music, but that is a longer term project.
Is there anything you’d like your fans to know?
I am focusing exclusively now on my music in a way that I haven’t since 2010. Lots of things are going to happen. Stay tuned …
Written by Sylvie Barnett
Get the KINNARI EP on Bandcamp: https://outersect.bandcamp.com/
Outersect on Facebook
Outersect on Soundcloud