Moog Music seems to have a bigger presence and NAMM every year. This time they had a large enclosed space complete with retro neon signs.
But that merely prepared the way for what was inside. The centerpiece and main attraction was the reintroduced Moog Modular.
There was quite a bit of excitement with the news about the modular. Besides being huge and impressive, it also boasts simple and easy to control modules with distinctively Moog sound.
While some sounds that one could get out of the demo system reminded me of the Minimoog, it was a different instrument. It is a modular, so the combinations can go quite distant from the classic Minimoog subtractive sound. Since the modules are fairly basic in terms of function compared to the recent Eurorack modular releases, it does take quite a few to make a patch. The larger size of the modules and knobs does make it easy to handle and play. But it is probably more of a studio instrument than a live instruments (especially with the high price tag).
More down-to-earth but perhaps odder was the Moog Werkstatt, a tiny patchable synth with Moog sound that interoperates nicely with Eurorack systems.
This one is indeed something for live use. I’d love to see how it works together with the Theremini. It does make some weird crunchy sounds, and would make a great first stage of a modular in between the Theremini as controller and various Eurorack modules as post processing.
In between, Moog does continue to provide its “Phatty” line, including the Moog Sub 37. These are quite practical to get a Moog sound for live-stage situations.
Of course there was quite a crowd to see the Modular. We at CatSynth certainly wish them well with the new instruments and exposure.