Check out this killer video of Periphery’s Mark Holcomb jamming through some riffs using a custom amp in Positive Grid’s BIAS app and running through several features in JamUp. The song list is “Pale Aura,” an untitled demo which may or may not be used for Periphery, and “Immaterial.” “Since I keep my Fractal AxeFx-II racked up in our touring rig when we’re at home, my home jamming rig has been condensed to just an iPad and a powered cab,” Mark says. “Not only are the tones as good as any other piece of gear I own but the portability of having both Positive Grid apps on iOS makes it ideal for travel.”
PRESS RELEASE: Guitar apps are changing the way musicians around the world practice, perform, and record when hitting the road. As of today, it’s no longer necessary to spend hundreds of dollars and dedicate long hours to purchasing and loading a complete guitar rig on the tour bus; now any musician can just tap on a guitar app and bring the whole experience with an iPad or iPhone. Mark Holcomb of Periphery is one of them, as he keeps his chops in shape with mobile guitar apps JamUp and BIAS on the band’s latest world tour.
How does a guitar app like JamUp/BIAS help you on the road?
It’s a total gamechanger. I’ve always looked for that perfect jamming app on tour and I never find anything that comes close to my home rig. I also am a fan of recording my ideas on the go, and Bias and JamUp take care of all of those needs. My main problem with most other portable amp sims is that they just lack that authenticity and substance that a real amp has. Bias gets so close to the real thing that I find myself just using it at home as opposed to a real amp.
What functions within JamUp do you find most useful?
Definitely the Jam and Record section. The Jam feature is so useful for me because you can slow down parts of a song, pitch them up or down, and so on. I do a ton of learning by ear and this is an invaluable tool for that. Before JamUp I never had a portable tool that would let me do this. Of course the 8 track recorded is a great tool – there’s been many times, in airports, hotels and venues where I’ve recorded random song ideas I would’ve otherwise forgot.
What’s your favorite amp in BIAS?
Honestly its one that I created myself, haha. But that’s the beauty of Bias — creating, tweaking and perfecting a sound that you’re chasing is so easy and intuitive. Having a wealth of options can sometimes be daunting but Bias presents all these options in such a way that makes the amp-building process so fun and rewarding. It helped me discover an addiction I didn’t know I had.
Where do you use JamUp/BIAS the most?
Definitely on the road, or in transit. I use it at home a good bit too, when I don’t feel like recording or jamming on my computer. But for me personally its true value is on the road; where ideas and inspiration can hit out of nowhere. Pulling out the iPad and chasing these ideas is the easiest thing and something I can do almost impulsively. Same thing at home – having the app nearby is such an easy way to capture ideas.
Any advice to guitar players out there?
Don’t be afraid to have unconventional technique or ideas. Many players shy away from abnormal conventions because a teacher or peer tells them to and sometimes that can squash true originality. Try and find your own voice, even if you face critique for it.
Video link – Mark Holcomb talks about JamUp & BIAS guitar apps:
About Positive Grid: Based in California, with satellite operations in Germany and Taiwan, Positive Grid focuses on delivering superior and highly creative mobile music experiences. Since 2008, the company has designed and developed a core technology base and is currently expanding it to various applications. Positive Grid’s best-known product range, featuring the JamUp multi-effects guitar app and interface, is now distributed in over 60 countries around the world.