There is a modular synth show at the South Street Seaport (210 Front Street, New York) in NYC tomorrow today! It’s called the Control Voltage Faire and it runs from 3-8PM. If that’s not enough fun for you there is a Buchla Concert that follows from 8-10PM.
“Since most modular synthesizers are constructed at the cottage industry level and distributed online, it is difficult for users to interact with these instruments. Control Voltage Faire will be the first opportunity on the East Coast for amateur enthusiasts, professionals and the general public to experience analog synthesizer modules produced by DIY manufacturers and crafters. Like a small-scale NAMM show with the independent spirit of the Maker Faire, the Control Voltage Faire will zone in on the origins and future of modular synthesis. Presenters at the Control Voltage Faire include: Control, 4ms, Harvestman, Knas, Main Drag Modular, Make Noise, Malekko, SnazzyFX, MeMe Antenna and Pittsburgh Modular. And more to be announced! The evening will feature Buchla 200 Recital, presenting three composers exploring this powerful instrument: Alessandro Cortini, Carlos Giffoni, and Mark Verbos. To end the event, a late show featuring Xeno & Oaklander and Loud Objects will perform on all-analog instruments. The concert will take place in Lower Manhattan’s @SEAPORT!, located at 210 Front Street.” – facebook.com/events…
Well this is really exciting for me to see! There is a brand spanking new modular synth store in Williamsburg, Brooklyn. It’s named Control and the address is 416 Lorimer St. Brooklyn, New York. 11206. They opened yesterday! The website isn’t online yet but you can join their mailing list here: ctrl-mod.com. There’s no doubt you will see me there often.
“Driphouse’s Daren Ho and Jonas Asher have just opened New York’s premier synthesizer boutique. If you’re on the east coast you no longer have to wait for modules to arrive from California, just visit CONTROL in Williamsburg.” – The Sixth Bar
Herbert Deutsch the co-inventor of the Minimoog talks about the invention and plays the instrument. Directed by Michael Sterling. For the record I really enjoy my Slim Phatty!
“Herbert A. Deutsch (born February, 1932) is an American composer, inventor, and educator. Currently professor emeritus of electronic music and composition at Hofstra University, he is best known for co-inventing the Moog Synthesizer with Bob Moog in 1964.” – Wikipedia.org
I love all the plug-ins Berlin based Sugar-Bytes produces. Even though their new software Cyclop is aimed at the dubstep crowd don’t let that deter you. In fact, tools created for one thing used for another often makes a lot of sense. A FX Sequencer, 10 filters, 6 synth engines, Routing Mod and more in an easy to use thing should make any electronic music producer smile. I’m going to buy this tonight. $139 USD.
“And with it comes bass — lots of it. Synthesis in its purest form. Spectral, digital, or fat analog. Use your own samples as a wavetable, throw effect sequencer orgies, drop on filters and make wobble basses never heard before.” – sugar-bytes.de
I wish you a special Wire to the Ear Happy Birthday Bob where ever you are. I love my Slim Phatty!
“Robert Arthur “Bob” Moog (May 23, 1934 – August 21, 2005), founder of Moog Music, was an American pioneer of electronic music, best known as the inventor of the Moog synthesizer. Bob Moog’s innovative electronic design is employed in numerous synthesizers including the Minimoog Model D, Minimoog Voyager, Little Phatty, Moog Taurus Bass Pedals, Moog Minitaur, and the Moogerfooger line of effects pedals.” – Wikipedia
So let’s say you modified your Korg Monotribe to use MIDI. You can see the post I did about the Amazing Machines Miditribe I/O: here. Unbelievably there is now a software editor that lets you control your MIDIed Monotribe called Mtribe. You can now save presets, record automation, etc… There’s even a random patch generator (yay). It’s stand alone or a Max4Live device. The software is $5. I love my Monotribe and think it has a great sound. Very much worth the price.
“MIDI IN/OUT for all MIDI supported features in a practical GUI. Presets (load/save for storing and recalling presets!). Key Tracking. In real time pitch modulates LFO intensity / VCF cutoff. LFO as second oscillator, auto tuned based on harmonics schemes. Glide emulation and finer pitch bending (more precisely than raw MIDI). XY Pad for two parameters at once (with reset and spring mode). (optional) note off removal (to remove gate clicks) and velocity off/on. preset randomizer for each section (VCA, LFO, modulation, glide). MIDI learn for the GUI through extra MIDI input.”
A video demo of the wicked looking Pittsburgh Modular Foundation synthesizer I previously mentioned (link). There are great things happening in the Eurorack modular community. If your don’t already know and are interesting in these type of synths and modules be sure to spend time over at the Muffwiggler forums.
“The Foundation is a fully modular, eurorack, analog synthesizer. A patchable system styled after the great monosynths of the past with no hardwired signal path or fixed voice architecture to restrict creativity. Driven by two wide range analog oscillators the Foundation produces a huge, warm sound that can’t be matched by digital or VST synths. All of the elements of a classic voltage controlled synthesizer are available as an open, patchable, modern synth.” – pittsburghmodular
Jono named after it’s creator Jonáš Gruska is a MaxMSP synthesizer inspired by the modulars. It has a sequencer and a random patch generator (nice). It’s 15 Euro and if you don’t like it they will return your money.
“JONO is a software musical instrument inspired by modular synthesizers. By providing a mixture of classical and experimental elements it can serve as an interesting addition to your setup or as a standalone tool.” – jono.zvukolom.org
Acidlab who already make great Roland TR-808 (Miami) and TB-303 (Bassline) clones is recreating those products in beautiful Eurorack modular form. As far as pro-audio gearlust these things rate high on the wow I want to touch them scale. You can read an interview I did with Klaus Suessmuth here. Klaus posted these photos and information over at the Muffwiggler forum (link).
“The newest products are FRAME with 84TE space, a 5-ch Mixer and the POW-Modul. 3HE Case is at 75 Euro; the Powermodul with powersupply is at 65 Euro. POW-modules’ performance is +12V/700mA und -12V/700mA. Another new products will follow in the near future: 6HE Case, 303VCO & M303 (303-module); the 808-Drumodule will need more time. -a V/Octave to V/Hz Converter (for Korg-CV & Metasonix) will follow, too!” – Klaus Suessmuth
In the late 1960s Mike Matthews worked as a salesmen for IBM. He then started Electro Harmonix in NYC. The legendary effects pedal company is still going strong. His most famous pedal is the Big Muff fuzzbox. I’m far more interested in his very early analog products. One of them is awesomely named the Sequencer Drum. It’s a simple analog synth with an 8 step sequencer. You can hook two together and they will be in sync. You don’t buy these for their features. You buy them for the sound. Like calves liver it’s something not everyone is after. After watching the video above some of you are already on eBay. You won’t find these often. If your looking to recreate an early 80s Soft Cell demo cassette this is a good starting point.
“The Sequencer Drum is one of the rarest Electro Harmonix pedals. Unlike some of the other EH obscurities, this one is actually useful and sounds amazing! Not only is it an 8-step CV/Gate sequencer, but it has a built in synthesizer and a mode that allows you trigger the sequence at a set decay! The leather pad on the front is meant to be tapped to activate the trigger (hence the “drum” in the title). This particular sequencer is the fully patched out version, with an input that allows you to clock the unit externally, and CV and internal Clock outputs for sequencing other synthesizers.” – Matrixsynth (captured eBay description)