CatSynth Pic: Mr. Maximillion in the Studio

We are back from NAMM and resuming regular scheduled CatSynth Pics. Today we have one of our good friends, Mr. Maximillion, in the studio with Charles Whiley. They have quite the synth collection, and always encountering new ones in their photos. And while it isn’t a synth, that mixing console is quite impressive.

If you haven’t yet done so, please check out our NAMM coverage on CatSynth TV!

CatSynth Pics: Nina and Moog Slim Phatty

This is one of several adorable pics of orange tabby Nina with a Moog Slim Phatty synthesizer. From ros_frank via Instagram. The entire collection of portraits is embedded below.

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#nina_ros 😻 #catsynth #synthcat #meow

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CatSynth Pic: Figaro, Moog Subsequent 37 and Sequential Prophet REV2

Figaro the handsome tuxedo cat sits atop a Moog Subsequent 37 synthesizer, along with a Prophet REV2 from Sequential (Dave Smith Instruments). From yvesanthonylaur via Instagram.

CatSynth Pic: Gracie and Arp Odyssey

Gracie is back! This time with a first-version Arp Odyssey (before the red Helvetica style). From Alison Synthetic Dreamscapes.

CatSynth Pic: Tower of Volca

An orange cat lounges next to a “Tower of Volca”. Submitted by Greg Roussac via our Facebook page.

I see a Kick, Beats, Drum, and Bass. We at CatSynth have a Beats, along with our favorites: the FM and the Modular. If you have not yet done so, please check out our new demo of the Volca Modular, and we will be giving one away on February 9!

CatSynth Pic: Micromoog and Farfisa VIP

This cat is trying to reach the stops on the Farfisa VIP organ while sitting on a Micromoog synthesizer. From Chris Weirdall via Facebook.

CatSynth Pic: Modular patch from OK Housecat

The cats at OK Housecat are having a bit of fun with this patch featuring both modular and circuit-bent gear.

Dude sick patch 🆗🏠🐈 #modularsynth #patch #cat #ok

For more music and circuit bending from OK Housecat, please visit their website.

Farewell to 2019: Tipping Point

Our year-end collage is a long-standing tradition at CatSynth. And we had a lot of fun making this year’s edition, so many wonderful images to choose from. One of my best solo performances to date took place at the Compton’s Cafeteria series at the Center for New Music. Big Merp came to live with has at CatSynth HQ. And our adventures took us from the halls of NAMM to the bottom of Death Valley to the subways of New York.

As we mentioned at the end of last year, most of the energy has moved to CatSynth TV and our social media platforms (especially our Facebook page). The blog is mostly our core cat-and-synth pics these days, although I do enjoy sharing long-form articles now and then. And In 2020, I do plan to revive the “primary highways” series from eight years ago.

On the video side, things have been going very well. Here are the top videos for 2019:

  1. Rick and Morty Pocket Operator, Part 2
  2. Introduction to the KOMA Field Kit [Episode 106]
  3. Ginger Baker, In Memoriam
  4. EXCLUSIVE! Arturia Pigments 1.2 First Look
  5. Folsom Street Fair 2019
  6. NAMM 2019: Rossum Electro-Music Trident [Episode 116]
  7. Rick and Morty Pocket Operator Unboxing [Episode 166]
  8. Mutable Instruments Plaits [Episode 102]
  9. Strymon Magneto Loop & Sample Modes [Episode 125]
  10. NAMM 2019: Interview with Dave Smith of Sequential

By early autumn, I was also thinking about this year as a “tipping point.” The transition from the blog to the video channel is the most obvious, but it also applies also on the personal side. The arrival of Big Merp was one of the big stories, and it’s been a tough integration getting both cats to coexist, but things have been trending well in the past few months, with Sam Sam regaining her confidence and HQ becoming a more harmonious place again. Musically, I have moved in a direction that is perhaps closer to my roots in jazz, fusion, funk while maintaining the experimental electronic aspects. I have also moved to a point where studio work is how I spend most of my musical time, between the videos and other projects. Finally, I am getting older, as we all are, and that adds both perspective and a need to focus on health and wellbeing. In 2020, I may “do fewer things” than in the past, but I hope the things I choose to do make an impact both personally and beyond.

There is a lot to look forward to in the coming days: NAMM 2020 is around the corner, I have a full queue of demos to share, and I am laying the foundations for some major musical projects. And of course, we will continue to post cats and synths.

CatSynth Pic: Georgina and Akai MINIAK

Georgina sits proudly on top of an Akai MINIAK synthesizer. Submitted by Steve Lamb via our Facebook page.

I will confess, I was not familiar with the MINIAK. After looking it up on the Akai site, it sounds like an interesting little instrument, especially the vocoder. Indeed, it reminds us a bit, at least feature-wise, of the Roland JDxi (which also has a vocoder), although the oscillator sections differ significantly.

CatSynth Pic: Studio Meowskers with Persephone

Beautiful Persophone returns. This time she has an Arturia keyboard controller to go along with the Behringer Model D (center rear) and sundry other items. From Rob Robinson via Facebook.