We would be remiss if we didn’t visit the Korg booth at NAMM, especially as Waldorf was there as well. We took some quick peeks at some of the new offerings, which you can see in this video.
The Korg Prologue synthesizer was among the most hyped instruments leading up to NAMM, so we of course had to check it out.
It is quite pretty, with a sleek black front panel and wooden side panels. The analog synth was not that exciting to us, as we at CatSynth are rather spoiled by the offerings of Dave Smith Instruments such as the Rev2 or Prophet 6. And it doesn’t fill the niche of the Minilogue as an affordable polyphonic analog synthesizer. What intrigues us is the open architecture for the digital oscillators that will allow advanced users to add their own programs. At NAMM, it is difficult to impossible to explore this, but we look forward to learning more about in the future.
By contrast, the Waldorf STVC string synthesizer and vocoder was fun to play and sounded great on our first test. The vocoder played more smoothly with my voice than the Roland VP-03 that I frequently use (including in the opening for CatSynth TV). But it does require dialing in the exact right patch for one’s voice. When we returned to the booth to record our video segment, it took a while to find something that worked, and it wasn’t quite as good as that first time. But we know this is part of the deal with vocoders, and they require practice to play well.
In the memory of Bruce Lee… greatest dragon!
My version on amazing “Enter The Dragon” theme music by Lalo Schifrin.
Lead and solo parts live played on Commodore 64. The rest of tracks sequentially recorded.
– modified C64 + Mssiah cartridge synth software
– bass guitar
– Waldorf Blofeld synthesizer module
– Korg R3 synthesizer
– Dreamblaster tiny module (drums)
– Atari 1040 STE (MIDI sequencer)
Arranged, recorded, mixed and mastered by KATOD
Video-clip recorded and assembled by Katod.
Track: Enter The Dragon theme cover
My fanpage: http://www.fb.com/KATODmusic
My album you can find here:
and also many other online music providers…
CD you can buy here:
I have to admit I was a bit dejected at first when I started my systematic wandering of NAMM Hall A. A lot of solid recording and computer gear, but one can only feign so much interest in one soft synth and digital mixer or latest incarnation of a popular digital workstation. My mood lightened when I came to the Waldorf Zarnenbourg.
Yes, it is just another digital modeling synth, albeit in a pretty package reminiscent of a Rhodes suitcase piano. But it was very playable, and immediately left behind the initial overstimulation and monotony by firing up the Wurlitzer electric-piano model and playing jazz/blues/funk riffs for a few minutes. In some ways it was even more convincing than my workhorse Nord Stage (although that remains an excellent electric-piano model, too). The electric-pianos were physical modeling synths, while the acoustic piano was sample-based. The effect sections are also more versatile, in particular the auto-wah. The Blofeld was connected to the Zarenbourg’s audio input so the instruments were mixed together in the piano’s built-in speakers for a fun combination of classic 70s riffing and esoteric electronic sounds. The Blofeld can get a bit intense at times, and it seems like one of the booth agents was having a little fun with the next unsuspecting soul who tried turning it on.
This one in via Silent Strike who composed the tracks for the app with a Clavia Nord Modular 1, Micron Alesis, Jomox Mbase, Reason 4 Propellerheads, M-audio Axiom 25, Elektron Drumachine (pic at the bottom of this post). The app does not allow you to manipulate sound, but I thought it was interesting to acknowledge some of the gear used to create the audio for this app. The Waldorf Blofeld and Yamaha AN200 pictured however were not used.
Looks like Silent Strike had a studio supervisor involved.
There is also info on the app itself.
Gravitarium 2 combines music, art and science in one relaxing experience. Use all your fingers to guide the star flow. You can create 10 different animations depending on the number of fingers touching the screen: