radi safi

Big Synths

In 2007 I bought a Hartmann Neuron. I don’t know why I did but I remember the day clearly. I was hung over and Tam was out and about with the boy*. New music was on my mind. I like the kind of hangover that doesn’t involve pain but merely a certain disassociation with hard core reality. I make fun decisions during such times. And other times I start fights with people. This beast was a whopping $8000 and weighed a tonne. I was looking for sounds back then. Sounds that would differentiate what I was doing from everyone else and also create a sound for an album I had in mind. This I believe I achieved with EGBDF. A couple of years after the Neuron I heard that Jason Lytle buys up a whole heap of gear, old and new (mainly old I figure) for each new recording project; he learns the gear, starts pulling sounds and the magic begins. It’s a great way to approach any project as a producer. You’ll always the tricks that you pull but why not draw from a whole new palette of sounds? Isn’t that why we visit different studios? So while I was designing half a dozen business cards every day I was learning my new synth. It was a masterpiece in disguise of a piece of futuristic insanity in disguise of a pretty fat synth. The track Astro Boy in particular benefited from the experiments and mistakes that came out of that box. I didn’t use it on Just Keep Swimming but when time came for Xmas Omas I got into the mood again. We dragged it up the stairs into level 7 and somewhere between my car and studio floor, it died. I mean it fucking died. It’s hard drive based and essentially had a crash. It now sits in its custom case in a paid storage facility in Marrickville. No idea what it’s worth in the state that it’s in but sometimes, on a cool Autumn morning, I remember the day I decided I had to buy it. I wish I’d found Dan McPharlin’s paper synths first. I’d still have one here in front of me and it would still be working.

* There are two boys now


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