P. Ragde's sounds

Here, in reverse chronological order, are some sounds from synth equipment I started acquiring in January 2021. They are for the most part short exploratory segments, often with randomized or machine-generated pitch sequences. I've also written about some of the ideas and tools in more detail.

In a departure from my usual primitive HTML policy, I have embedded audio tags so that you should see players for the MP3s, with no preloading (if your browser cooperates). Still written by hand, though.

[2024-01-15] Three etudes using the ADDAC 112 VC Looper and Granular Processor module on snippets of recorded music. In order: the first minute and a half of the first track of Brian Eno's "Music For Airports"; about twenty seconds of a John Cage sonata for prepared piano; and about twenty seconds of the intro to an Al Di Meola cover of an Astor Piazzolla tango. Contrast with the use of Morphagene, below, on 2022-02-06.

[2023-10-16] Stochastic Inspiration Generator creating V/oct and gates for the Pizza FM oscillator, whose output goes to the Ikarie stereo filter and the Sarajewo analog delay. Thump by Quad Drum and Euclidean Circles.

[2023-08-27] Two etudes with the Frap Tools Cunsa quadruple resonant filter. The first one "rings" two filters to create drip noises, while processing a drone from Brenso with two more. The second one uses all four filters as dual bandpass on each stereo channel, processing a single drone, with slight variation due to LFOs, and a slow manual sweep of the linked filter frequencies. The first has added reverb; the second is Cunsa's direct output.

[2023-08-13] The return of gentle ambient made on the Elektron Digitakt, using modified sounds from the same sound pack as below.

[2023-04-02] From a single sample taken from a video of my daughter's son banging an IKEA Gladom table with a hammer, I crafted two pieces on the Elektron Digitakt, a sample-based groovebox. The first is closer to the spirit of the original sample; someone remarked that it reminded them of gamelan. The second is laconic techno.

[2023-03-23] Slow ambient made on the Elektron Digitakt. Both versions have very similar arcs and composition, but one is condensed for those in a hurry. Not quite a radio edit, but in the same spirit. Headphones recommended.

[2023-03-15] Five short fragments in reverse chronological order, using Generate 3, Paradox, and Intellijel Bifold, with Three Sisters to filter, SAC for delay/reverb, and Analog Heat for light enhancement. Pitch/gate generated by Pachinko. Some knob tweaking. The fragments range from cinematic (#1) to metal (#5). Headphones or large speakers suggested for #2, so you can hear the bass.

[2023-02-04] Two pieces with a similar setup as the one below, but with Generate 3 and Paradox in place of Morphos. In the first, Three Sisters is pinged for percussion while G3 plays lead on top. The second is a drone etude.

[2023-01-25] Norand Morphos complex oscillator showing off timbres, Three Sisters filter, Source Audio Collider for delay/reverb, Analog Heat. Slowish ambient.

[2023-01-13] Fluss on the iPad sequenced by Fugue Machine, with output processed by lofi-af.

[2023-01-12] Bright wavefolding etude from Brenso through the Sarajewo analog delay.

[2023-01-10] Slow ambient from Brenso, using a stolen riff from long ago. Wavefolding etude.

[2022-12-23] Music made on an iPad; first play on Fluss (Granular Playground), the new collaboration between Bram Bos and Hainbach, with no other effects or interventions. I tweaked one of the presets, then recorded while manipulating only one control, the Scan Speed / Filter X/Y pad (and occasionally repositioning the playheads).

[2022-11-29] Patch made on a single modular skiff set up in temporary digs. Sounds from Norand Morphos (modulated by Pachinko) through Three Sisters, Source Audio Collider (delay/reverb), and Analog Heat.

[2022-09-06] Patch made on a small modular pod case, featuring the Stochastic Inspiration Generator, as well as the Pizza FM module, Ikarie filter, and Electus Versio clocked reverb. Hypnotic beat.

[2022-05-28] Patch made on a single modular skiff for Drone Day 2022. (Pachinko, Paradox, Generate 3, Desmodus Versio).

[2022-04-23] Similar setup to below, but with a sequence from Usta (an unrecognizable Cure riff) processed by Pachinko, some waveform changes from Brenso, and slight modulation for Desmodus. A bit spooky.

[2022-04-22] Brenso modulated by Paradox and Quadrax, random pitch and gate width from Pachinko, Ikarie and Desmodus Versio processing the sound. Soothing.

[2022-04-08] First patch with Versio flashed to the Desmodus reverb, processing the triangle from Paradox FMed with a sine from Generate 3. The pulse-width-modulated square from Paradox is put through Ikarie. Falistri provides modulation all over. Slow and slightly spooky.

[2022-04-03] Immersive cinematic fragment, with percussion from Rings (modal resonator mode, no modulation apart from slow pitch/gate from Pachinko), its alternating outputs split, one going to Sarajewo (subtle delay time modulation), one to Melotus Versio (grain density/length modulated). Drone is Brenso (waveshaper bus modulation) through Three Sisters (envelope on Span, LFO on FM).

[2022-03-27] Lyra-8 with all the oscillators turned off. The sound is from feedback within the dual self-modulating delay, with added E-Dome reverb.

[2022-03-08] Some gentle ambient sounds from my single modular skiff. The lead voices are from the two Falistri function generators repeating at audio rate. The drone is Generate 3, through-zero FM-modulated by Paradox. Pitch/gate sequences are from Pachinko, supplied with irregular Euclidean clock from Pam's New Workout. The three voices are mixed and fed into Melotus Versio, whose dry/wet control is set to mostly dry.

[2022-03-06] Lyra-8 into the third-party (hammondeggsmusic) cathedral reverb on the Korg NTS-1. It's easy to get transported by this device for an hour or more. This is nearly ten minutes long but I've tried to keep it moving along.

[2022-03-06] Paradox osc 1 into Melotus, Paradox osc 2 into Ikarie, modulation from Falistri and Pachinko. I patched this late one evening, enjoyed it, went to record it the following day and realized I'd switched the envelope/VCA connections (into Delta-V). I corrected it but it didn't sound nearly as good. So here is the "wrong" version.

[2022-02-{21,26}] A series of snippets exploring some new modular acquisitions (the Paradox dual oscillator, the Pachinko random pitch/gate generator, and the Melotus Versio granular texturizer). The lead arp is Generate 3 through-zero FM, modulated by Paradox osc 1 and an LFO from Falistri, into Melotus. The drone is Paradox osc 2, pulse-width modulated by an LFO from Falistri, into the Ikarie stereo filter and then Melotus.

[2022-02-{13,14}] Two snippets from a borrowed Lyra-8, a Russian drone synthesizer with a mind of its own. In the first one, I tuned each of the eight voices carefully, and brought them in and out in groups. In the second one, I turned all the knobs at random. Much of the sound variation comes from minute changes in the time knobs of the self-modulating dual delay. Both are put through the E-Dome reverb on the Source Audio Collider.

[2022-02-06] Three drone pieces with different timbres, made with a small borrowed Make Noise skiff, all with the same simple patch (Morphagene into Echophon into Erbe-Verb) but some changes in knob position, and with a very slow ramp from Batumi on Morphagene's Slide input to control the starting point of the sound grains. The first snippet scans forward through the first nineteen seconds of Radiohead’s “Just”, and the second through the first seventeen seconds of “Knives Out”. The third one, with shorter grains and subdued delay and reverb, scans backwards through the first seventeen seconds of an Al DiMeola cover of an Astor Piazzolla tango (guitar and muted bandoneon).

[2022-01-30] First time putting the Brenso oscillator through the Three Sisters filter (and then synced Sarajewo delay). Pitch sequence from summed LFOs on Batumi, quantized by CVilization, flipped upside-down and transposed halfway through by my throwing a couple of switches on the T43 precision voltage adder.

[2022-01-23] Pitch sequence: ramp LFO from Pam’s, offset and phase modulated by two hand-tweaked Falistri triangle LFOs, quantized by CVilization.
Osc: Generate 3, core patched into phase.
Envelope: Delta-V, Euclidean triggers.
Filter: Three Sisters, formant, slow LFO on FM (one Freq knob twist halfway).
Delay: Sarajewo, 2x tempo-synced, taps panned in stereo space.

[2022-01-21] A couple more generative arp studies on the Korg NTS-1, this time with a bespoke 8-note slow sequence in C minor from the QuNexus Red keyboard, once in pendulum mode and once with “Brownian motion”. LFOs on LP filter and VPM shape, slight differences in osc/delay/reverb settings, no manual intervention.

[2022-01-18] An experiment with a minimal system: the tiny NTS-1 and the Launchkey Mini (two other early acquisitions). Slow arp on Launchkey Mini repeating one note (because there is no keyboard latch), and the “Volca Bass” user oscillator (three detuned saws), 4-pole low-pass filter on the edge of self-oscillation, flanger, pingpong delay and submarine reverb washing out a faster NTS-1 arp building on the LkM's slower one.

[2022-01-03] Music made on an iPad Pro, using the Mononoke drone synth (inspired by Lyra-8), Ruismaker Noir for percussion, and Rymdigare for effects, all hosted in AUM.

[2021-11-28] Blipblox After Dark, a synthesizer aimed at children, bought for my daughter's kid, recorded after about five minutes of use. I set knob positions but otherwise I’m not touching it. More metal than I would have expected.

[2021-11-21] Through-zero FM étude: manual carrier pitch sweep on Generate 3 (a touch of higher harmonics added manually at times), modulated by audio-rate Falistri taking random pentatonic minor pitches from Pam’s, which is also sending Euclidean envelopes to G3’s Exp FM and V/oct inputs, into Sarajewo with synchronized delay times (altered for pitch shifts by an LFO).

[2021-09-25] Early Eurorack modular synthesizer étude: square wave from Brenso oscillator (being random quantized pitch from Pam’s New Workout) into the Falistri function generator patched to generate subharmonics, dropped two octaves by flip-flops, into Ikarie for lowpass stereo weirdness, and sent out of the rack into analog-style delay and spring-style reverb from the Source Audio Collider pedal.

[2021-08-29] A classic modular synthesizer patch called "the Krell patch" (random unquantized pitch and duration, with lower notes lingering more than higher ones). The twist is that it's done on a single Eurorack synthesizer module, Quadrax, whose primary use is for envelopes (e.g. for amplitude). But an envelope repeating fast enough can become an oscillator.

[2021-02-05] One of the few things I did with one of my earliest acquisitions, a Teenage Engineering PO-33, an inexpensive sampler that looks like a calculator without its case. Most of what I did in my first six months is forgettable, as is this, but the twist here is that the sound samples are from my making espresso in the morning.