I DREAM OF WIRES, 28.7.2015, Kino Babylon Mitte, Berlin/Germany

Everyone involved in synth driven music , from electronic to rock, from alternative to experimental, was definitely fascinated by the strange early days electronic instruments: the first modular synthetizers.
Modulars had their golden age during the late 60’s thru the 70’s with experimental and electronic music and with progressive rock and the first new wave.
In the 80’s digital compact synths became the fashion trend and the old analog gear got immediately obsolete.
During the 90’s the interest in old analog synths started to grow and Dieter Doepfer was the first who decided that a new analog modular system had to be born again!
The new modular standard “Eurorack” was born with Doepfer and a couple more manufacturers at first, but then the eurorack market became full of new brands and ever growing.
Today is difficult to know every module in the modular market as it’s full of new units day by day.
I Dream Of Wires” is THE documentary about the modular world, the rise, fall and rebirth of the modular synthetizer!

I Dream Of Wires Trailer from Monoduo Films on Vimeo.

On Tuesday July 28, I DREAM OF WIRES will celebrate it’s release premiere in Berlin, followed by a live performance by the legendary Morton Subotnick. Taking place at Babylon Kino Berlin, Morton Subotnick, accompanied by his frequent collaborator, video artist Lillevan, presents FROM SILVER APPLES OF THE MOON TO A SKY OF CLOUDLESS SULFUR REVISITED: VI, marking Subotnick’s first live appearance in Germany since 2011.

Morton Subotnick’s contributions to electronic music cannot be overstated; as a founding member of the seminal San Francisco Tape Music Center, Subotnick played a key role in the conception and development of the influential Buchla modular synthesizer. Armed with his Buchla, Subotnick composed and recorded the landmark 1967 LP, SILVER APPLES OF THE MOON, widely regarded as a modern classic, and the first all-electronic music album to connect with popular music audiences. In 2010 SILVER APPLES was selected for the National Recording Registry of the Library of Congress. Long considered one of the essential milestones in electronic music, it continues to have great effect on later generations of artists.

Subotnick’s interview in I DREAM OF WIRES, alongside interviews with influential electronic musicians including Trent Reznor, Gary Numan, Carl Craig, James Holden and Vince Clarke, is pivotal in the film, and provides a revealing insight into this true electronic music visionary.

The film will be introduced by I DREAM OF WIRES’ director Robert Fantinatto, who will also join Morton Subotnick for a post-screening Q&A. This July 28 event is more than just a celebration of the modular synthesizer; it’s a rare opportunity to learn and experience the historical roots of electronic music.

I Dream Of Wires is an independent documentary about the history, demise and resurgence of the modular synthesizer – exploring the dreams and obsessions of people who have dedicated part of their lives to this fascinating, esoteric electronic music machine. Over 100 inventors, musicians and enthusiasts are interviewed about their relationship with the modular synthesizer – for many, it’s an all-consuming passion.

Beginning with an historical primer, I Dream Of Wires explores the early development of modular synthesizers in the 1960s, from pioneering companies R.A.Moog Co and Buchla and Associates. We speak to early adopters of the modular synthesizer, forward-thinking musicians like Morton SubotnickHerb DeutschRamon Sender and Bernie Krause. These musicians offer insight into the modular synthesizer’s conception, providing an outline of Robert Moog‘s “East Coast,” and Don Buchla‘s “West Coast” synthesizer design philosophies, two radically different schools of thought on how musicians would interact with electronic music instruments. The groundwork laid by Moog and Buchla continues to inform the way electronic instruments are designed, and used by musicians, to this day.

Legendary and influential electronic musicians and producers like Gary NumanChris Carter (Throbbing Gristle), Daniel Miller and Flood discuss the modular synthesizer’s 1970s heyday, through to its near-extinction in the 1980s. From there, we trace the phenomenal resurgence of the modular synthesizer. Established musicians such as Trent Reznor (Nine Inch Nails), Carl CraigCevin Key (Skinny Puppy), and Vince Clarke (Erasure) show off their systems and explain why they opt to use this volatile but ultimately rewarding technology. Meanwhile, a new generation of dance and electronica artists including James HoldenJimmy EdgarRichard Devine and Clark explain why they’ve stepped away from laptops to embrace the sound and physicality of modular synthesizers. Innovative companies like ModcanDoepfer, and Synthesis Technology, driven by a desire to revive modular synthesizers, discuss how they planted the seeds that have now grown into a major cottage industry, represented by contemporary manufacturers including Make NoiseIntellijelThe HarvestmanMetasonix, and Verbos Electronics.

Through tracing the history of the modular synthesizer, I Dream Of Wires also outlines the history of electronic music as a whole, from its very beginnings at the dawn of the electric age. The film provides a fascinating look at how technology has shaped the electronic music landscape; from the giant, “unobtanium” analogue machines of the ’60s, to portable synthesizers and preset digital keyboards… from software synthesizers running on computers and smart-phones, to today’s potpourri of vintage and cutting-edge technologies. Today, the modular synthesizer is no longer an esoteric curiosity or even a mere music instrument – it is an essential tool for radical new sounds and a bona fide subculture.

Morton Subotnick EJ3_6637-300dpi

Morton Subotnick is one of the pioneers in the development of electronic music and an innovator in works involving instruments and other media, including interactive computer music systems. The work which brought Subotnick celebrity was Silver Apples of the moon [1966-7], was commissioned by Nonesuch Records, marking the first time an original large-scale composition had been created specifically for the disc medium – a conscious acknowledgment that the home stereo system constituted a present-day form of chamber music. It has become a modern classic and was recently entered into the National Register of Recorded Works at the Library of Congress. Only 300 recordings throughout the entire history of recorded music have been chosen.

He is also pioneering works to offer musical creative tools to young children. He is the author of a series of CD-RoMs for children, a children’s website [] and developing a program for classroom and afgter school programs that will soon become available internationally.

He tours extensively throughout the U.S. and Europe as a lecturer and composer/performer.



Official Website I Dream of Wires

Official Website Morton Subotnick

Website Monoduo Films:

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Event Details

Babylon Kino

Rosa-Luxemburg-Strasse 30,

10178 Berlin

28.07.2015 | 8PM

20€ Presales

25€ At the Door

+10€ w/DVD


Tickets Available:


Babylon Kino:

Korg Little bits

korg little bits

“The new Synth Kit includes an assortment of 12 electronic Bits modules that instantly snap together with magnets to create circuits like those used in KORG’s famous analog synthesizers. Modules included in the Synth Kit are power, oscillator (x2), filter, envelope, delay, keyboard, micro sequencer, mix, split, random, and synth speaker.” – Korg

more info : korg usa

Harvestman Hertz Donut demo part-1

I’ve done some audio demo of the Harvestman Hertz Donut as a “standalone unit”, the audio path is just Hertz Donut and A132-3 VCA , no filters, no efx!
The only modules used to control the vco and the vca are a MFB ADSR on the VCA and a Plan B Model 10 on some sounds to control fm amount and wave discontinuity on the hertz donut.
The Hertz Donut is a voltage controlled digital dual oscillator that can provide sine, saw, tri and square waves on both the generators and a ringmod for the square waves.
The oscillators can work synched together in some different modes :

  • No Sync
  • Bad
  • Worse
  • Stupid
  • “strong” Sync

As you can imagine except for the No sync option the other sync options go from a classic perfect sync to a bad , worse or even “stupid” wich forces the second oscillator out of sync in random ways, shifting the sync point .

Harvestman Hertz Donut demo1 by francescopoggianti

The idea behind the Hertz Donut is to get a Zero-FM oscillator using a Primary (the first oscillator) and a MODULATION (second oscillator) with different kind of sync and modulation capabilities over Frequency , Wave Shape and AMP.
Frequency , Shape and AMP are the possible destinations of the modulation oscillator, the Hertz Donut is indeed a simple 2 operator FM & AM generator!

Harvestman Hertz Donut Demo 2 by francescopoggianti

Harvestman Hertz Donut Demo 3 by francescopoggianti

Cwejman VCO2-RM & STG LPF demo

This is just a short demo of the Cwejman VCO2RM thru the STG Soundlabs “Post  lawsuit ” LPF filter.
The VCO2RM is set on the middle wave (the modulated TRI) modulated by the VULCAN MODULATOR by Livewire.
Each VCO has its indipendent modulation rate.
The 2 vco are mixed by an A138 and then pass thru the STG LPF.

An A145 modulate (sine) the filter frequency.

The filter has 75% resonance and the frequency is between 5-6.

Cwejman & STG LPF by francescopoggianti

4 Filters shootout (part1)

The 4 filters:

  1. Doepfer A-120
  2. STG Soundlabs Post-lawsuit LPF
  3. Analog Systems RS-500 e
  4. Analogue Solutions SY02 Multimode filter

The oscillator: MFB OSC02 Triple VCO

The two filters that can be directly compared are the A120 and the STG, they are both 4 pole, 24dB slope ladder filters.
Ladder filters copy the classic “moog filter” (electronically speaking) so they have a very definite cut , a really fast response to modulations and oscillates at full resonance generating a sine wave.

The DOEPFER A120 was concived as the classic moog emulator but it doesn’t sound moogish at all, it is very clear and have a minimal touch to the sound, it lacks the organic carachter of the ladder moog, but it’s perfect for other tasks as aggressive minimal sounds or percussions.

The STG LPF emulates the ARP 2600 filter “post lawsuit” (the one used after the legal problems with R.Moog). I tried this filter face to face with the original and it is quite similar but not the same, but it retains the warmth and power. The only downfall of this filter is a kind of bleed you can hear as the resonance increase, not very pleasant but all in all tolerable. This filter has 2 freq inputs and 2 signal inputs all without attenuators, 1 amount input and a audio output.

The Analogue Solutions SY02 was dsigned as a Korg MS 20 filters and vca clone. It consist of a highpass + lowpass filters both with resonance and amount and a vca. The sound is raw and the filter can distort easy, this module is used even in the Vostok and Black Coffee . The fourth filter is the Analog Systems RS500e, a diode filter with 18dB and 24dB slope  clone of the classic EMS VCS3 and AKS Synthi (pre and post 1974). This filter has the classic frequency, amount and response  (resonance) controls plus a level in and level out (to get a kind of overdrive sound) and a cv slew (fast or standard), a mod that was usually done on the original synthi.

The first set of demo is based on arpeggio and bass sounds as they show the behaviour of the filters in simple sounds.

my eurorack modular synth evolutions…

Just to keep you tuned about my eurorack modular system, this is my actual configuration:

  • Cwejman VCO2RM
  • MFB OSC 02 Triple VCO
  • Doepfer A138 mixer
  • Analogue Solutions SY02 Multimode filter
  • Doepfer A120 lowpass filter
  • STG Soundlabs “Post-lawsuit” LPF
  • Doepfer A145 LFO
  • Livewire Vulcan Modulator
  • PlanB Model 10 Polyphonic Envelope
  • MFB Dual ADSR
  • Doepfer A132-3 dual VCA
  • Analog Systems RS500E EMS Synthi filter


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