It all started a long time ago, in a call centre smoke-break room far, far away... (unless you live in the city centre of Glasgow, Scotland in which case it's a few minutes walk - and if you're over 70 then it'll still feel like 5 minutes ago...)
Although there are many people who have given generous contributions of advice, time and resources - Enlightenspeed Ltd is predominantly operated and owned by Brian Findlay, a software developer from Glasgow, Scotland who now resides in Paisley, and devotes as much spare time as possible to the project.
The goal is to make music software that makes life easier for musicians, simply by providing sparks where there might be dry patches. We have always endeavoured to leave as much of the creativity in the hands of the artists; we don't believe in making software that does the creativity for you - we want to make powerful and intuitive software that enhances your own expression by speeding up processes and making it easier to break repetitive cycles.
It's no joke to say this all started in a call centre smoke room. Around 20 years ago, Brian was a metal guitarist who was quickly tiring of the guitar sound being ubiquitous in every track and had started to take an interest in electronic styles. Brian says "I had always found dance music up until about '98 or so to be very thin and weak sounding as well as generic and image driven, rather than having true artistic merit. The first techno album that really changed that being "Music for the Jilted Generation". That's not to say that there weren't gems among the coal; Bomb the Bass and M/A/R/R/S came out with sonically excellent pieces even in the late 80's, but there wasn't much of that quality being released - and the best stuff was always sample based".
The interest in sound quality as well as just musicality persisted as Brian matured as a musician and then later when developing instruments and MIDI devices. "Years later the realisation hit me that the better ones sounded poor as a result of the technology in use not being particularly fit for purpose yet. I've had friends try to show me their pride and joy hardware synths from way back when, and I'd always have to stop myself from telling them it sounded awful compared to practically any guitar and amp combo; but it's important to understand the evolutionary position of those devices - it's quite funny that something like the TB-303 is really just an experiment in realtime sound manipulation, but it worked its way to legendary status despite not really performing any particular task particularly well. Ultimately, it was an important stepping stone, and I want Enlightenspeed to be about building those types of devices - not the synthesizers, of course, but the next thing that no-one thought of despite how obvious it should have been - nowhere is this more apparent than with the our two upcoming devices".
Then one fateful day, a friend in the aforementioned smoking room suggested Brian have a go at using a computer to generate tracks. "The first software packages I looked at were Cubase VST, Bias Peak, and Propellerhead ReBirth. I loved Peak because of the precision it offered with wave editing and all the crazy eccentric stuff you could do just manipulating samples, but it was really ReBirth that turned my head, whereas Cubase just seemed to do a huge amount of stuff but required a lot more knowledge just to get the first sound out of it, never mind a decent sound, and I was terrified of becoming a hypocrite by getting exposure and adulation by releasing anything that sounded like the pop dance stuff I had always tiraded against, so the factory presets were never going to fly with me; it needed to be strictly my own sounds". Later on, Brian was "not a day one registered Reason user, but certainly not far away from it, like within three months or so, I think, but even from the first moments of seeing the demo I was crazy addicted, it was truly a love affair".
By the time that Propellerhead introduced the Rack Extension format Brian was an reasonably accomplished Reason power-user and well known on the Propellerhead user forums - seeing the time had come for him to change direction, Brian worked to gain his degree in software development and started to follow in the footsteps of his heroes!
The rest, as they say, is history.
Going forward, the company has a lot of ideas for new devices on the boil, and we hope to share these with you soon. Keep watching, and you might just find something that changes and enriches your life the same way that Reason did for Brian.