A little bit about me

I’ve been making electronic music since the late 90s – first using just software (initially Cakewalk and then Cubase as my DAW, with software such as ReBirth and Sound Forge to make noises) on an old P66 desktop computer, and eventually incorporating hardware synths when I bought my first analog synth in 2009, which was the wonderful Novation BassStation Rack!

This was and still is an incredible monosynth (which I still have) and is capable of some awesome basslines!

By April 2010 I had a couple more rack synths – the Novation A-Station and the E-mu Orbit 9090 which I used to make my very first Muzoid tracks. Check out my humble little studio setup below, from when I co-wrote and co-produced this indie album.

I first discovered modular synths in 2014 through this rather unexpected 8 hour musical interpretation of Siddhartha by Billy Corgan of the Smashing Pumpkins. I had no idea what he was doing and thought it looked very messy with all those cables, but at the same time was fascinated by it.

Fast forward to 2018 and we moved house to a place with enough space so I could finally get my gear out of storage and start to play with my toys again. I added a few more bits of hardware to my setup – a Roland TR-8, a Behringer MS-101 and a few other bits.

Around this time I discovered Doepfer on the internet and would joke with my wife about getting a Doepfer A-100 system and filling up all our newly-found space with modular racks, but the price felt too prohibitive at the time (and I still had no idea what they did or how to use them).

Doepfer Musikelektronik GmbH Firmensitz Graefelfing Amtsgericht Muenchen im Handelsregister HRB 97 399 Geschaeftsfuehrer Sibille Heller, Dieter Doepfer USt ID-Nr. DE129329318 Website www.doepfer.de

Then for Christmas 2018 my wife gave me a voucher for Elevator Sound – a Bristol shop which specialises in modular synths and desktop synths/drum machines! So in January 2019 I spent well over an hour there with the most helpful, patient and awesome Ben, who gave me an introduction to what various modules did and how they connected together, and I walked out with my first Eurorack setup 🥳

I loved the physicality of seeing the connections and signal path laid out in a visible way, and gradually I started to understand how synths worked! And yes I had slight anxiety about the gaping hole in the middle of my new rack, and quickly filled it with more modules…

For me, modular synths give me 2 things. First, they allow me to experiment and create new and unique sounds and patterns that I wouldn’t normally come up with on a non-modular system. And second, they satisfy the problem-solving part of my brain that is always thinking “how can I make a sound that goes like du du du wa wa wa grrrrr boing!”

Since getting into modular I’ve met some awesome people, learned lots about synthesis and sound design, and also discovered loads of companies and super talented people who design, build, make and use these amazing creations. And there’s still so much to learn too!

Welcome to my happy place 😊