I’ve been through many iterations of what musical gear-heads call “GAS” over the years. Once coined to stand for “guitar acquisition syndrome”, now more often meaning “gear”, it describes the compulsive desire to buy the next piece of musical kit.
In my case, I’ve been a sufferer since my teens, when I’d feverishly leaf through the school music supplier’s catalogue looking at all the guitars I’d never be able to afford. It branched out: amps, basses and – most fatally – pedals. I got lost down the pedal wormhole for literally years, obsessing over getting JUST the right fuzz or delay. Daftness.
I was GAS free for many many years, until I tripped, fell and acquired my first hardware synthesizer. I ADORE synths. And the worst part is, you can get enormous modular racks of them which are never, ever finished. And they do so much!
To date, I’m the slightly shamefaced owner of a big Nord workstation, a MeeBlip Triode, a Korg Monologue, a Novation MiniNova, a Roland TR-8 drum machine (808 JOY) and a Roland JU-06 reissue of the incredible Juno 106. About to arrive is a hardware sequencer, my first: a Squarp Pyramid. I’ve had enough of pointing and clicking: I need PHYSICAL. This little gizmo will enable me to play live with every single sound being made in real time with a real box of squelches and bleeps. No software. Software can do one.
And the sounds you can get out of a synth never fail to delight. So – what about you lot? Are you fans of a synth yourself? Got any goodies? And if not, what’s your favourite synth music? Let’s hear it.
Meantime, here’s a bloke using some of the boxes I myself own to recreate the Stranger Things theme. Feel the 80s squelch!