Deli #54 - Bodega, Brooklyn Stompbox Exhibit and Synth Expo 2018

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the deli nyc emerging bands and gear



dal and Sy Pe n o Exp th

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Issue #54 Vol. #3 Spring 2018


18 9 -10, 2 0


the deli

The Deli is a labor of love for the most exciting music scene in the world, and since 2011 our events for musicians have helped keep the print edition alive. This year we decided to consolidate our pedal and synth events into a bigger expo, and while we were at it, we even threw a new Vintage Guitar Exchange into the mix!

nyc emerging bands and gear

Issue #54 Vol. #3 Spring 2018 EDITor IN ChIEf / PuBLIshEr

All our events for musicians are free, just like the magazine. If you are into synths, pedals or guitars, show your face on June 9-10. There will be discounts, vouchers, manufacturer reps, and a lot of toys to play with!

Paolo De GreGorio fouNDEr

Charles NewmaN ArT DIrECTor Kaz Yabe ( WWW.kAzYABE.CoM ) ExECuTIVE EDITor

Paolo De Gregorio Editor in Chief

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his year, the Brooklyn stompbox Exhibit will have for the first time a

vintage Guitar exchange

component to it. used and vintage guitars will be bought, sold and exchanged by ten NYC area stores that specialize in vintage guitars—so if you are looking to sell or buy something special, this is the stop for you! The stores involved in the exchange are:

30th street Guitar Chelsea Guitars Guitar Center my Generation Guitar Pentatonic Guitar rivington Guitars rudy’s music southside Guitars vintage Guitar Gallery

Fresh Buzz | New NYC Artists

B il ly W oo d s

Sultry and confident, in their latest video for single “DDt”, New York’s alt-rock trio Uni makes good use of a mix of vaguely S&M imagery, glam-rock sartorial choices and the fetishization of all the iconography it portrays. the song itself is lumbering and heavy, with swelling organs, crunchy guitar riffs and powerful lead vocals by Nico Fuzz. Glam rock had roots in NYC with the New York Dolls and David Bowie’s formative years; times seems ripe for a revival in the city. (EthAN AMES)

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Ps y ch R oc k

Billy Woods still won’t show his face. Even as one of the forerunners of Brooklyn’s Indieground, he remains cloaked in mystery and blunt smoke. In the video for “Keloid” from his most recent LP Known Unknowns, Woods is a stark silhouette against an antiseptic backdrop. In a world that gets scarier with greater exposure to the evils at play behind the curtains, we all wish we had a “clean room” to escape the radioactivity and radio activity. For a stream-of-consciousness MC whose consciousness is more finely attuned than most could hope for, I imagine Woods’ brain is his clean room. Let’s hope he keeps scribbling away. (BroKEMC) In her new EP Kitsch II, New York avantpop artist Sur Back—real name Caroline Sans—deeply mines the esoteric, incorporating obscure facets of many different genres into the record’s four tracks. It’s part baroque-pop, part new wave, and extremely avant-garde. An artist able to synthesize complexity, structure and melody into music that’s relevant and current, Sur Back can at times also be sweet and melancholic, with unconventional string orchestration and an abundance of compelling, unexpected melodic twists. (EthAN AMES) Building on a reputation for reckless and disorderly behavior, NYC rockers Beechwood deliver a sound that draws equally from the psych, punk and glam rock realms, with stylistic elements of both Marc Bolan and Daniel Ash (in particular his soft vocal style) audible in many of their tracks. thickly layered background voices often juxtapose against garagey drums and guitars, leading to frequent psych-out jams. Single “C F” makes full use of all these aspects while adding slide guitar and keyboards into the mix, while more aggressive party numbers like “I Don’t Wanna Be the one You Love” walk the line between Sonic Youth and rockabilly. (DAvE CroMWELL)

Records of the Month

fortH WandererS

Half Waif



Forth Wanderers’ new self-titled album, their Sub Pop debut, is symphonic and rollicking. the band’s songwriting duo— Ben Guterl on guitar and Ava trilling penning lyrics—are perpetually in sync, despite often writing at a physical distance. the album is a triumph, bursting with angst and dissonance while maintaining an innate pop appeal. the five-piece band’s members are rarely in the same place at once (they’re all college students in Massachusetts, New York, New Jersey and ohio, respectively). Despite this, their chemistry and synchronization as a band is abundantly evident on this release. this album has something for just about everyone who has an ear for pop music— it’s bright and jangly at times, distorted and gnashing at others, and it always has something to say. (EthAN AMES)

Nandi rose Plunkett’s singing is deliberate. her voice moves slowly, with seeming ease, as if each line is a response in real time, never rushed but carefully thought out and confident. the music Plunkett makes under the half Waif moniker is equally precise, particularly on the group’s latest album, Lavender. though often meditative in its ambience and melodic complexities, half Waif flexes a knowledge of pop that brings the music to sweeping highs. throughout, Plunkett contemplates womanhood and the distance accompanied by travel, perhaps best summarized in the opening track’s description of a visit with her grandmother. Both musically and lyrically, Lavender makes for a thoroughly engaging and ambitious addition to the half Waif catalog. (CAMEroN CArr)


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Katie Von ScHleicHer Shitty Hits Late in 2017, NYC based singer-songwriter (and vocalist for Wilder Maker) Katie von Schleicher came out with a poignant and plaintive album with the not-so-poetic title Shitty Hits. From the very beginning, opener the Image treats the listener to von Schleicher’s unusual, yet elegant melodies, supported by an unexpectedly noisy production based on an original and intriguing approach to loud/quiet/loud. the results are spectacular. the perfectly controlled, vaguely industrial clangor keeps coming in the following tracks, together with Katie’s incredibly beautiful vocal lines, forging a record that’s as unique as it is enjoyable and moving. Perhaps it’s true, these songs aren’t hits, but, on the other hand, they are definitely art. (PAoLo DE GrEGorIo)

Feature | Cover Artist


e l b b u b e th n i s r e Johnson k c Ro Graham D y W r i t te n b


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hE LIGhtS ArE DIM and the band members’ silhouettes soft against Brooklyn Bazaar’s trademark stained glass as Bodega starts their set. Frontwoman Nikki Belfiglio plays a converted computer keyboard as percussion before bite-smooching frontman Ben hozie’s cheek.

hozie’s reading from the biography of French film critic Éric rohmer: “A classicism among the ruins… the cinema is definitely invested with a redemptive mission… [empowered by] the impartiality of the movie camera and the limits it imposes on human intervention.” Consider this the band’s ethos, alongside a motto inscribed in the lyric book of their forthcoming debut Endless Scroll: “the best critique is self-critique.” But there’s an irony to the rohmer quote: no one could seriously claim the camera and the screen as “objective” or limiting “human intervention” in 2018, year of the DeepFake (which followed 2017, year of Fake News). hozie knows better than to sell cinema’s impartiality with a straight face, which is why on Scroll’s closing track, “truth Is Not Punishment,” hozie shouts out the tv as the fulfillment of writing’s “porcupine dream… / where a man and his dream, let loose on caffeine, see it only one way.” Like everyone else, Bodega’s stuck inside a perspective and ideology. the question Endless Scroll can’t stop posing is: What happens when you’re aware of this stuckness? What are the limits and liberations of self-knowledge? Bodega used to be Bodega Bay, back before they broke up, played a final show to a desperate sweaty crowd, then pulled an LCD and were born again. the new record is being released on What’s Yr rapture, the same label that puts out Bodega’s post-punk peers Parquet Courts. It’s more traditional than former Bodega Bay’s eccentric thirty-three-track Our Brand Could Be Your Life. But the never-say-die mode of “can’t go on, I’ll go on,” of trying to slip serious engagement into knowing snark, is standard practice for hozie and Belfiglio, the two holdovers from Bodega’s previous incarnation. their projects have always focused on the hypocrisy and self-oriented pragmatism that characterize political and moral life — hozie makes full-length films in his free time, most recently The Lion’s Den, which took time out, Peter Singer-style, to examine the nuanced ethical trade-offs involved when consumption is framed as a zero-sum game: spend it on yourself, or spend it on others. the band’s biggest influence is, as it has been from the start, New York (“an island of blue / a nipple in water”). Wilson Ave venue Alphaville is a home base for the group, and hozie and Belfiglio are regulars in Bushwick’s weeknight scene. the constant set-up and erosion of class oppositions, and the selfaware disparagement of yuppies is vintage Whit Stillman updated for the iPhone bourgeoise. that’s always been the conflict, right? Yuppies vs. Yuckies (aka Young Creatives). they used to fight over Downtown real estate but the suits won so the bands packed up for Brook-

lyn. Now the Yupsters have landed on the waterfront, set up a beachhead at the vice Media offices. It’s no coincidence that vice is the conflict’s ultimate go-between, an intermediary agent with a history of swapping sides as is convenient. In his essay “Joe Chip, What’s on Your iPod?” tom Ewing compares the death of rock, and the New York DIY scene by extension, to the “shrinking reality bubble” of half-life in Philip K. Dick’s Ubik: Within the bubble we listen to what we always did, we talk to people who listen to that stuff too, we enjoy the unspoken shared experience. But outside the bubble, that experience is irrelevant or forgotten... radio stations change format... mailing lists sputter out; fellow fans move away and are not replaced. Ben hozie is the rocker in the bubble who’s also read the think pieces written about the bubble. the political analogy is quick at hand, Bodega’s point of departure: for the man in a bubble aware of the bubble, what options are left? If you’re implicated, and you know you’re implicated, are you redeemed? Ultimately, self-knowledge is not just limited, it’s limiting. Accepting your slivered access to the truth, digging into your own moral impurities and hypocrisies, can be as paralyzing as it is necessary. Where to go after self-revelation’s incapacitation? Paraphrasing rohmer, you return to the past to find a classicism among the ruins, look to the history books as navigation. Cue Montana Simone, drums, standing up behind a cymbal, tom, and snare à la Moe tucker. Bodega is cratedigging through the archives, reincorporating discoveries and walking backwards as a way to move forward. In the end, well, there is no end — but perhaps it’ll work. d Bodega’s Stompboxes

[Top] Madison’s Pedalboard: TC Electronic Echobrain / MXR Analog Chorus / Fulltone OCD / MXR Dyna Comp / BOSS NS-2 [Bottom] Ben’s Pedalboard: BOSS BF-3 / Cusack Music More Louder / Wampler Velvet Fuzz / BOSS TU-2

the deli Spring 2018


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Vlad Holiday

Indie Rock

New York’s indie-pop sensation vlad holiday is a force to be reckoned with. Just take one of his latest single, the ambient and melancholic “Children”—channeling the likes of M. Ward and the National; holiday waxes nostalgic for simpler days and laments a certain loss of innocence that comes with the territory of growing up. Moreover, he seems to long for the kind of blind optimism that drives so many of us to plunge headlong into life and love, for better or worse. (EthAN AMES) Your family moved to the US from Bucharest when you were 10 for political reasons, how did the passion for rock’n’roll manifest itself? I fell in love with music right around the time I moved to the US. I was a bit of an outcast coming from a country no one had heard of (as 10-year-olds) and barely speaking English, so I found an escape through music and learning the guitar. I was in my own world and no one was judging. that ended up defining who I’d become in every way. Your singles, “Quit Playing Cool” and “Children” both seem tinged with irony. What purpose does irony serve in your lyrics? It’s the realist in me fighting the dreamer. For example, the line in Children, “Lie and say this world is fine, that we will be alright,” (to me) acknowledges the reality of life but also that you can’t focus on the negativity 24/7 and lead a sane life. Photo: Lisa verberght

Klon Clone / ZVEX Instant Lo-Fi Junkie / Strymon Flint / BOSS DD-3 / Malekko Omicron Fuzz / Fulltone OCD / KORG Pitchblack Tuner


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Your tracks have a lot of interesting and varied guitar sounds. Tell us about the pedals that were the most utilized during the recordings. ZvEX Instant Lo-Fi junkie was a key ingredient, as well as the Chase Bliss Warped vinyl. Strymon Flint for all reverb/tremolo, that might be my favorite, it does those two staple effects just so well. EarthQuaker Devices Bit Commander for the crazy fuzz parts and EarthQuaker Devices Bellows with the drive on 1 to add a bit more body to certain parts. I have a Klon clone for leads and a Malekko fuzz I got as a gift from a fan. All running through my Analog outfitters Sarge class A tube amp. What else do you have on your board these days? the BoSS DD-3 is cool for certain things, including crazy digital stutter effects, but my little EhX Memory toy does slap-back a lot better. ZvEX is for all the tape warble lead parts which are sprinkled throughout basically every song. Fulltone oCD is on there now with the drive set to 0 (it still ads just a tiny bit of dirt), for when I need a bit more breakup. Also recently got this tweed Blues Junior equipped with a Jensen from Fender, sounds great, cool spring verb and that classic fender tube crunch.

[Top] Yamaha PortaSound Voice Bank PSS-270 [Bottom] Yamaha DX21

ProMiSeland All you really need to know is that you want to see Promiseland’s tear-yourself-apart, no-limits live performances. the project’s industrial-techno tracks sound like they could come from a secret warehouse rave on the edge of the city, but Australian-born Johann rashid’s vocals are straight from the realm of punk. Collectively, it makes for an intense, nightmarish experience, which coupled with the performance aspect, becomes simply jarring - in a good way (if you can take it). those in need of a cathartic ritual that’s at once cerebral and wild are warned. (CAMEroN CArr) Industrial rock is a tough genre to pull off, how did it all start? Johann: Promiseland has many moving parts. one is the live show. It’s loud, aggressive and really has its own energy. Behind the scenes there is a lot going on in terms of production and collaboration. It began when I approached Melbourne producer harmon with a few demos. he was able to take my sounds and song ideas and ultimately structure a sound I feel is ever changing. though the two singles that are out lean more into the industrial world the other songs move through many different vibes, slower tempo dub vibes, some experimental female vox and a general exploration of collaboration.

Industrial Electro-Rock

What personality traits do you think are necessary to make this kind of music? I think one needs the ability to feel tense and physical. one needs to trust in subverting images and sounds into any environment. Like throwing your body around, clenching your teeth and really destroying something uncontrollably. Acting out destruction through schizophrenic thoughts and actions. Letting the mind travel anywhere and become anything and also having some sort of enjoyment doing that. What are the pieces of gear central to your sound? Johann: the energy of where I am and whom I get to jam with is at the centre of the sound. When I left for New York I didn’t bring anything with me. I borrowed a Yamaha DX21 and a Yamaha Portasound PSS-270, which I still use to record a lot of home demos. Harmon: We like to change things up from song to song and do a lot of gear borrowing. My go to outboard instruments are my Gibson bass and guitar and Yamaha sk20, as well as the kaos pads. I like playing around with reverbs and delays a lot. I will spend most of my time getting these sounds right. Some of the new tracks feature things like the Pro 2, korg mono/poly, ms10, Juno 6, tr 707 drum machine. We really just love getting into the studio firing up what we can and record as much as we can. the deli Spring 2018


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ellen o

Chillwave Avant-Pop

Ellen o synthesizes her training as a classical pianist with an affinity for hip hop and trap to forge a fresh sounding chillwave blend. the artist’s experimental fusion creates a soundscape of eerie synthesizers driven by a future bass aesthetic, all of which forms the perfect background for her smoky vocals. Ellen o’s second and most recent album You/Sonata features artists Smoke DZA, ShrAF, and Khallee, as well as a more mature vision of her unique aesthetic. (AMANDA oGEA) How and when did you start producing your own music? I started producing music in 2012 after I moved to NYC and finished grad school at Brooklyn College. I bought a synthesizer and drum machine and realized that it was more inspiring and interesting for me to produce and write songs than composing for acoustic instruments. What do you find most rewarding and challenging about being your own producer? It’s most rewarding to be independent and being able to directly articulate the exact sound and feel I’m looking for. Being independent can simultaneously be isolating at times, but I have found that it’s very important for me to continue to collaborate with other artists via features on my music or by doing features with vocals/ instrumentals on other producers’ tracks. Your music is at once atmospheric, intimate and playful, do you have a method to your songwriting process? I start by finding and sculpting a patch on synthesizer, then I make sketches of chords and progressions that will make up different sections of the song. Next I use my MPC for sampling and sequencing the beat. Words and melodies usually come to me last by improvising and humming over the chords and beat. the last step is figuring out the form of the song.

[Top] Roland Juno-106 [Bottom] Waldorf Blofeld


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What are your other essential songwriting tools and sound sources? I use the Akai MPC 1000 for sampling and sequencing. I usually use a foundation of roland tr-808 and tr-606 drum machine samples for the drum sounds. I make beats using the live performance sequencer on the MPC. I love the 16 levels function which allows you to map out a sample with a parameter like pitch, velocity etc. over the 16 pads. I love the roland Juno 106’s full, lush and pillowy beds of sound, in particular the string patches with chorus. I tend to use this synthesizer as a more static pad like texture. I was drawn to the Waldorf Blofeld for its more digital sounds that are contrasting to the analog sound of the Juno 106. this synthesizer is a great tool for making glassy FM like patches, and it also has an arpeggiator which add a more rhythmic melodic element.


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Photo: Ben Benson

cool company Cool Company’s 2016 album, Slice of Paradise, is a salient and smooth piece of R&B/neo soul and hip-hop fusion. Each song is rife with enticing percussion, hypnotic melodies and deceptively intricate, jazz-like chord progressions. The album is appealing and original, a testament to Cool Company’s potential for greatness. It did so well that, in 2017, they released a Remixed version of it. (ETHAn AmES) Your breakout 2016 single “Beneath the Lights” features a distinct sound, with a very lo-fi Ukulele creating the foundation of the track’s otherwise electronic arrangement. How did that part happen? Fat Matt: We were just chilling in the backyard of my parent’s house in new Jersey when it came together. It was a beautiful day and I had my laptop outside with us. I came up with the ukulele riff, and instead of going into the basement to record it on my mic like I’d usually do, I just used the laptop microphone outside, which picked up the crickets, birds and car sounds that gave it that summery, Lo-Fi feel. We added a few more layers on the laptop mic like finger snaps and our buddy michael rubbing his hands together to make the shaker sound. After that, we brought it inside and recorded the bass and vocals in our regular fashion. 18

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[Top] Ableton Live 10 [Bottom] Ableton Analog

Soul-Pop Electro-Soul

What’s the set up as far as synth and recording gear/software? Fat Matt: We use Ableton for every song. The synth I use most is Ableton’s “Analog”. It’s got 2 oscillators and lots of options for filtering, pitch shifting, and lfo. I usually end up running it through several effects afterward, and often bounce it to audio and warp/ sample it. I record guitar and bass direct in and do a lot of percussion by striking or tapping random objects. I also try to use Yan’s voice as an instrument as much as possible. For each song, I try to develop a new technique or a new way of approaching the process, to keep my production from feeling stale. I’m most inspired when I feel like I’m discovering something new as I write. How is your songwriting process? Do you compose your songs before recording, or do songs ever evolve in the DAW during the recording process? Fat Matt: For us, recording and composing are always intertwined. We rarely write more than a few parts before recording, to keep our ideas organized, and because we work simultaneously. Ideally, I’m usually still working on the production while Yan’s writing, and since the ideas are developing simultaneously, the vocals and production are more connected than songs I’ve done where the beat or song was completed first.

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deal casino Indie Rock Avant-Pop

Already proven adept at hook-heavy alt-pop/ rock, in their new EP Isadora Duncan, Deal Casino progresses their sound into more nuanced sonic territories. The tempos drop considerably, opening up space for a more atmospheric production where synthesizers challenge the edgy guitar parts, while vocals double up in intensity, for a more mature and powerful listening experience. (CAmEROn CARR) What feelings, events, people and/or records worked as a source of inspiration for your first two records? You try things. Sometimes they work out and sometimes they don’t. We tried to make an honest record, committing to a lot of (somewhat silly) minimalist principles like single tracking all guitars, getting every take live, not overdubbing anything, recording certain songs with no click etc, but we thought that record fell a bit short of our own expectations. After that, we realized we wanted a more original vibe, with derivative tones for guitars and keys. By expanding our palette of sounds with synthesizers, vocal effects, and drum machines, we had a much easier time developing initial concepts for pieces that we found interesting. What are the crucial pedals on your boards? Vibrato was a key effect on the new material for essentially every instrument, so Joe P has gone through a bunch of vibrato pedals: he tried a Behringer UV300, ZVEX Lo-Fi Junky, and a BOSS VB-2. Joe P now has a vocal pedal board, in addition to his guitar one. He uses an Eventide mixing Link to send his mic line through guitar pedals and then back out to the frontof-house. It helps bring the effects we got in the studio to the live setting. The JHS Colour Box adds some dirt, the BOSS Space Echo pedal adds delay, the mooer ShimVerb Pro adds nice reverb, and that other pedal controls his Space Echo for guitar. On his guitar board he has two memory Boy Deluxe pedals for different delay types, a TC Electronic Hall of Fame mini, the Xotic EP booster, and an EQD Tentacle for really crushing the guitar tone. Joe C has a Strymon Sunset drive, malekko spring reverb, and the Strymon El Capistan, which he uses for a really cool dirty chorus effect. 20

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[Top Left] Joe C’s Modular Synth [Top Right] Joe P’s Vocal Pedalboard: Eventide Mixing Link / Voodoo Lab Pedal Power 2 Plus / Mooer ShimVerb Pro / JHS Colour Box / BOSS RE-20 [Bottom] Joe P’s Guitar Pedalboard: TC Electronic PolyTune 2 Noir / Roland Volume Pedal / (2x) EHX Memory Boy Deluxe / TC Electronic Hall of Fame Mini / Xotic EP Booster / EQD Tentacle / BOSS VB-2w

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[Top] Josh’s Pedalboard: BOSS BF-3 / TC Electronic Flashback / BOSS DM-3 / Voodoo Lab Pedal Power 2 Plus / Mooer Pitch Box / Whirlwind Orange Box Phaser / BOSS TU-2 / Way Huge Green Rhino MkII [Bottom] Sam’s Pedalboard: BOSS PH-2 / EHX Stereo Electric Mistress / BOSS RE-20 / Xotic AC Booster / Ibanez ES2 / JHS Crayon / BOSS CE-3 / BOSS PS-5 / BOSS CS-3 / Voodoo Lab Pedal Power 2 Plus / MXR Mini Phase 95

maybird maybird is a band that finds itself in the middle of the intersection of vintage psychedelia and modern alt pop. While by no means following in the direct veins of those rock forebearers, the manipulated guitars and electronics found throughout the band’s music keep an eye on psychedelics as inspiration far more than most alt-pop peers. Live, maybird captures its sound by frequently bringing along pedal steel guitar, saxophone, and even incorporating an unusual overhanded guitar playing technique. (CAmEROn CARR) How did your creative process change since your 2013 debut LP? Sam: Working with a producer definitely was eye opening, as I imagine it generally is for bands and artists that are for the most part self produced. The record has a lot of interesting and varied guitar sounds, tell us about the pedals that were the most utilized during the recordings. Josh: We tracked most of this EP with Patrick Carney in his nashville studio. He has every EarthQuaker Devices pedal 22

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Psych Pop Indie Rock

known to human-kind. We ran plenty of things through those. Sam: I REALLY enjoyed using the Jext Telez fuzz that Pat had (It may have been a Dizzy Tone?). At the time I was still trying to sort out my own board, and I’m just an avid collector of pedals, so it was a dream for me. What do you have on your board these days? Sam: I use the Ibanez Delay on just about everything, and I’m constantly bending down adjusting stuff on it. One of the big ones on the record is the EQD Sea machine, which belonged to Pat. I also used the JHS Crayon a bunch, Pat and I must have auditioned 20 different fuzz pedals for different things. Josh: The BOSS BF-3 Flanger is the first pedal I ever bought. I use it for sentimentality and ultra-flange. The BOSS DD-3 delay was given to me by my history teacher from middle school and high school. mr. Jones. We used to jam. Love that guy. It’s my favorite delay pedal. green Rhino is just a good fuzz for rhythm guitar. It’s also got a bass boost that adds to its crushingness. The Pitch Box is Sam’s, I use it as a chorus pedal but it also changes pitch, and sometimes that aspect of it surprises me during live performances.

Feature | Gear Trends

The SynTheSizer ThaT aTe The GuiTar Pedal Are Stompboxes Turning Into Little Synths?

written By Christopher Scapelliti Synth Illustration by Amy Walters (poster prints at


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t's a good time to be a sonically adventurous guitarist. The market is flooded with effect pedals from manufacturers big and small, and the range of tones and processing power on offer is nothing short of jaw dropping. Stomp boxes are no longer limited to one or two decent-sounding effects and a few knobs and switches. Digital signal processing (DSP) has made it possible to pack high-fidelity sounds and features once reserved for studio-quality rack gear into even the most compact of pedals. The further we go down this road, the more guitar effect pedals are becoming, both literally and figuratively, like synthesizers. Literally, because many tone-bending features once reserved for synthesists, like arpeggiation, bit crushing and mIDI functionality, are now available to guitarists in stomp boxes. Figuratively, because an increasing number of pedal makers are creating products with deep feature sets and highly tweakable functions that put them on par with patchable modular synthesizers. Consider Chase Bliss Audio, makers of distortion, delay, phaser, chorus, tremolo and EQ pedals: not only are the company’s stompboxes studded with control knobs and switches that can route the circuits in dozens of ways, they’re even outfitted with external DIP switches that allow the user to customize a host of parameters. Perhaps the only question is “What took so long?” This day has been coming ever since the transistor revolutionized electronics in the 1960s. That innovation gave birth almost simultaneously to small and affordable effect pedals and the electronic synthesizer. The timing of these developments may have been coincidental, but there’s no denying that the two industries have fed from the same trough and enjoyed a mutually beneficial association. guitar effect pedals and synthesizers have more in common than you may think. The groundbreaking synths that Bob moog introduced in the 1960s had many features that eventually worked their way over to the effect pedal community. The novelty of moog’s devices is that he used voltage control to tell the synth what note to play, to trigger the envelopes that determined how the filter’s cutoff frequency and amplitude changed over time, and to create effects like vibrato, wah and tremolo. Together, the components of his voltage-controlled system formed the basis for subtractive synthesis,

in which a harmonically rich waveform is passed through a resonant filter and treated with envelopes and low-frequency oscillators, or LFOs, which produce wavelengths below the audible range. It’s called “subtractive” because the filter is applied in a way that removes some of the waveform’s character in order to alter its timbre. many early guitar effects used elements of subtractive synthesis as well as voltage control. Consider the wah pedal, a highly resonant filter whose cutoff frequency is swept manually by the user, or the auto wah, a voltage-controlled filter whose cutoff frequency is controlled by an envelope that’s triggered by an audio signal. As for tremolo pedals and vibrato boxes—they’re nothing more than tiny circuits that apply a sine or triangle LFO waveform to an input signal. Under the circumstances, it shouldn’t be surprising to learn that synth maker Oberheim briefly produced the Voltage Controlled Filter auto-wah for guitarists in the 1970s, or that effect maker Electro-Harmonix created the 1980 mini-Synthesizer keyboard. Though product crossovers like these were uncommon, the shared technologies of the effect and synth industries made them possible. Of course, guitarists have been using distortion, overdrive and fuzz for longer than synthesizers have been around. As it happens, all of these are forms of distortion synthesis, which creates complex timbres from relatively simple waveforms. For that matter, when you run a fuzz pedal into a wah, you’re combining distortion synthesis with subtractive synthesis. And let’s not forget additive synthesis, the technique of combining the fundamental tone with its harmonic partials. This is how pipe organs and electronic organs synthesize complex sounds. An octave pedal is a simple form of additive synthesis that uses frequency dividers or doublers to create a synthesized version of the original note. Dividing that signal produces a tone one or two octaves below the fundamental, while the deli Spring 2018


doubling it creates a new tone one or two octaves higher. In recent years, Electro-Harmonix has made more complex forms of additive synthesis available to guitarists with its HOg Harmonic Octave generator pedal and POg Polyphonic Octave generator. For all their similarities, synthesizers and guitar pedals differ in many ways, not the least of which is their audio source. Traditional synthesizers use raw sine, triangle, sawtooth, ramp and square waveforms. As tones go, they’re about as generic as you can get. guitars, on the other hand, use strings and always sound like guitars. To give guitarists synthesizing power equal to that of a keyboard, you have to get the instrument’s “guitarness” out of the way.

PedalS WiTh SynTh feaTureS Wah Wah Pedal (1966) An example of “subtractive synthesis,” the wah is a highly resonant filter whose cutoff frequency is swept manually with a pedal.

In 1977, Roland did just that with its gR500 guitar synthesizer. The gR500 featured a hexaphonic pickup with six outputs, one for each of the instrument’s strings. This connected to a converter that extracted the pitch of each string to drive the unit’s internal voltage-controlled oscillator (VCO). It also turned note on/off data into gates that could control envelopes, trigger LFOs and perform other functions associated with voltage-controlled synthesis. In essence, the guitar became a controller to play the internal synthesizer’s waveforms, triggers its envelopes and so on. mind you, this was well before the advent of mIDI in the early 1980s. Roland has continued to develop its guitar synth line. The gR55, its latest mIDI-based device, even has samples as digital audio sources for the guitarist to trigger. But the company has also pursued traditional subtractive synthesis for the guitar through its subsidiary BOSS, which makes the SY-300 guitar synthesizer. The SY-300 requires no special pickup—just plug in your instrument and start playing. The unit uses DSP to extract from your audio signal the information it needs to drive the SY-300’s polyphonic synth engine. In effect, the SY-300, like the gR-55, gets your guitar tone out of the picture, allowing you to create synth tones just as a musician does using a traditional keyboard synthesizer. The SY-300 is a deep machine, but many guitar effect pedals are now packing similar features into the standard stomp-box format. DigiTech’s Dirty Robot stereo mini-synth pedal has a synth voice and a vocal formant voice for talk box and vocoder-like emulations, as well as filter modulation and even chorus and vibrato effects. The Pigtronix mothership 2 is a three-voice synth with a sub-

oberheim Auto-WAh (1976)

The short-lived Oberheim Voltage Controlled Filter pedal is early proof of the cross-pollination potential between synths and stompboxes.

roland Gr500 (1977)

The first device to give guitarists access to true synthesis. A special pickup/converter transformed the guitar’s output into pitch and note on-off information that was then used to drive a synthesizer.

ElEctroharmonix hoG (2006) An example of additive synthesis, the EHX Harmonic Octave generator produces sounds one or two octaves above and below the guitarist’s original notes.

Eventide is a registered trademark of Eventide Inc. Š 2017 Eventide Inc.

zVex rinGTone (2008) oscillator for subharmonic tones, a sync mode that slaves the VCO to the input signal for complex overtones, and even portamento to create those wild Keith Emerson “Lucky man” pitch swoops. And traditional waveforms aren’t the only options available when it comes to a synthesizer’s voices. A number of pedals today, like the Red Panda Particle and Electro-Harmonix Super Ego, make use of granular synthesis, which chops the input signal into tiny snippets, or grains. Heard in isolation, one grain wouldn’t be recognizable as a guitar tone, but when time-stretched or combined with other grains, it becomes a malleable material for creating new sounds based on your guitar’s own tone. Even guitarists who prefer the sound of their own instrument to that of a synth might enjoy adding some “Baba O’Riley”-style arpeggiation and sequencing to their fretwork. For that there’s the Alexander Colour Theory, a versatile eight-step sequencer and effect processor that creates rhythmic combinations and tones previously heard only from synths. Other contenders include the meris Ottobit Jr., which combines sequencing, stutter effects and bit-crushing to create tones reminiscent of arcade games, and EarthQuaker Devices’ Arpanoid, a polyphonic pitch arpeggiator that transforms whatever you play into an adjustable ascending or descending scale. It was probably inevitable that greater degrees of synthesizer functionality would come to guitar pedals once technology made it feasible. But what’s surprising is how a sort of synthesist mentality is taking root in the industry, even with pedals that aren’t synth effects. The Chase Bliss pedals are perhaps the most obvious manifestation of a growing movement to give players deep control over sound creation within the realm of traditional effects. Taking matters to an extreme, Empress Effects’ upcoming Zoia (featured on page 31) pedal employs a modular approach to creating everything from effects and utilities to instruments. Its 8x5 grid of pushbuttons can be programmed in seemingly limitless ways. All of which begs the question, Will this hyper-functionality serve us, or will the trend toward complexity pass and we’ll once again gravitate toward the simplicity of single-function pedals and the familiar tones of the electric guitar? Time will tell, but both approaches have their own fans. What’s undeniable is that guitarists will continue to have a new and ever-expanding world of tone to explore, while synth players will find in guitar pedals new effects regular synths don’t provide. d 28

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The successor to the ZVEX Seek Wah, which was the first guitar pedal to feature a very simple step sequencer. The Ringtone lets guitarists produce textural rhythmic patterns, ranging from the intriguing to the atonal.

red Panda ParTiCle (2013) Using “granular synthesis,” the Particle chops an input signal into tiny snippets, or grains, that can be time-stretched and/or combined with other grains to forge new sounds.

diGiTeCh dirTy roboT (2017) A stereo mini-synth pedal with a synth voice and a vocal formant voice for talk box and vocoder-like emulations, as well as filter modulation and even chorus and vibrato effects.

ChaSe bliSS audio Thermae (2018) Like little synths, Chase Bliss Audio’s stompboxes are studded with control knobs and switches that can route the circuits in dozens of ways—they’re even outfitted with external DIP switches that allow the user to customize a host of parameters.

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Pedal Shopping Guides What’s Up Pedal-Possessed Creatures!

Have you had a chance to check out our pedal blog and aggregator Delicious Audio yet? It’s all about stompboxes, featuring news, videos, advice, and also uber-thorough shopping guides organized by specific effect! Here are a few of the ones we posted recently.

BEST AMBIENT/SHOEGAZER PEDALS Once upon a shoe-gazing time, guitarists had few choices when it came to stompboxes that could create washes of ambiance. Many players used multiple delay and reverb pedals at the end of their signal chains to generate deep, blooming and lingering soundscapes. These days, thanks to advances in digital signal processing chips, pedal makers can create stompboxes dedicated to this particular brand of reverb, and as it happens, these kind of effects are all the rage right now. We’ve spent some time with the current crop of offerings and have collected 18 that we consider the best. All of the pedals listed in this article will allow you to create cavernous reverbs with lingering tails, shimmer effects, delay, modulation and much more. Which is not to say they’re all one-trick ponies. Many of these entrants can cover a range of reverb densities and tail lengths, making them rather useful for other musical styles as well. Google “Best Ambient/Shoegazer Pedals” to find the article by Christopher Scapelliti.

BEST GLITCH/STUTTER/GRANULAR PEDALS The music genre known as “glitch” has been around since the late ’90s. It embraces all sorts of electronic noises that are typically produced through error, such as the skipping of portable CD players and the stuttering of damaged digital audio formats, as well as lo-fi sounds like bit-rate reduction, sampling artifacts, and extreme time stretching and compression. Traditionally, musical artists have created glitch effects in computer audio workstations by manipulating samples. In recent years, however, advances in digital signal processing have made it possible to replicate the sounds of the genre just by hooking up to a stompbox. And in the spirit of stutter-guitar pioneers like Radiohead’s Jonny Greenwood, players have begun to embrace these extraordinary sounds, as well as tape-speed effects, audio blurring and stretching, and many other tones associated with glitch. If you’re looking for a pedal that’s built for the sole purpose of generating great glitch sounds, there are numerous units out there worth checking out, and in this article, we’ve collected 16 of the best glitch stompboxes currently on the market. Google “Best Glitch Pedals” to find the article by Christopher Scapelliti. 30

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Tech 21 Fly Rigs are pro units armed with sweet analog tones. In the footprint of a pixie, each embodies an entire, multi-application “rig,� so you can rule the road, rehearsal or recording gig. Choose from the Richie Kotzen RK5 Signature Fly Rig for guitar, the Bass Fly Rig, and the Acoustic Fly Rig.

NEW: dUg Pinnick Signature DP-3X

Tech 21 delivers consistent quality sound studio to studio, club to club, arena to arena. Choose yours today.

The Pedals of the

bklyn stompbox exhibit 2018


June 9: 12pm – 7pm / June 10: 10am – 5pm

Absurd Conclave (360 Jefferson St. Lower Level)


BOSS JB-2 Angry Driver

6 Degrees FX Amplitude Eleven

EarthQuaker Devices Westwood

JHS Pedals Bonsai

• A dual-mode drive engineered in collaboration with JHS Pedals. • It pairs the tones of the BOSS BD-2 Blues Driver with JHS Pedals’ popular Angry Charlie. • Dual-concentric knobs provide independent drive, tone, and level control for each overdrive type. • A six-position mode selector, lets you use each overdrive independently, or combine them together in series and parallel.

• Super flexible 2 Channel Class A overdrive. • Blue Channel has 2 gain stages acting as gains 1 - 2 on some vintage amps, producing crunchy tone with a natural tube-like clipping. • RED channel is a 4-gain stage high gain channel that gives you saturated drive for both rhythm and lead. • G.A.S. mode delivers Germanium fuzzy clipping texture.

• Overdrive pedal with a powerful EQ section (20dB of cut and/or boost at 80Hz and 2kHz). • Designed to work with low wattage amps, pushing them into anything from cutting, edge-ofbreakup rhythm tones, all the way to articulate, singing lead tones stacked high with pleasing even-order harmonics and sweet sustain.

• Utilizes a rotary knob to switch through nine replications of classic, vintage, rare, or hard to find variations of the Tube Screamer. • Two mods included in the replication: Keeley’s 2002 “Mod Plus” and JHS’s own “Strong Mod”. • The three other knobs also replicate the response of the original units.


Mod Kits DIY Persuader Tube Drive

One Control Baby Blue OD

Outlaw Effects Cactus Juice

Deep Space Devices Golem

• You’ve got to build this one yourself! • Darlington preamp pushes cascaded triode vacuum tubes into distortion. • Four dual triode vacuum tubes are included with each kit (JJ5751, 12AX7B China, JJ12AU7 and a NOS USA made 12AT7). • A boost switch provides an additional layer of flexibility.

• A straight forward three knob pedal based on a discrete circuit that combines dynamic overdrive and fuzz. • Delivers quality tone both at reduced volumes as well as at cranked-up lead output.

• A take on the Tube Screamer clone with two separate overdrive modes. • “Normal” mode offers warm and creamy breakup, great for rhythm parts, blues guitars. • “Juiced” mode increases the gain dosage to extra strength, and lets you tear through denser mixes.

• A seriously deep analog distortion pedal with tons of tonal options. • The “Tremble” toggle switch reconfigures the placement of the silicon and germanium diodes. • “Form” and “Shift” knobs affect the tone’s EQ, while “Rage” and “Power” govern volume and gain. the deli Spring 2018




The Pedals of the

June 9: 12pm – 7pm / June 10: 10am – 5pm

bklyn stompbox exhibit 2018

Absurd Conclave (360 Jefferson St. Lower Level)


Floating Forest Drifter • A delay with an embedded photocell-controlled tremolo. • The bottom right switch gets the tremolo controlled by the photocell (rather than the regular LFO). • It comes with a USB light that can be plugged into the USB plug on the side of the pedal, which features a rate control. • When the mix knob is around 75% you can engage the momentary switch (center footswitch).

Walrus Audio Arp-87

Hotone Binary Eko

Malekko Thicken

Stacks FX Thsee Anomaly

• An affordable but extremely powerful digital delay based on a dual-DSP platform and a modeling system. • Features 17 high-quality delay effects types including analog, digital, tape, dual, ping pong, filtered, modulated, slap back. • Stereo I/O and expression pedal support.

• A multi-tap delay/chorus with two modes: Exponential and Random. • In the former, the Spread knob exponentially widens the delay times. • In the latter, both the short delay and the long delay are randomly selected within a time “range”, at a fixed rate, and they keep changing randomly within the long or short length set by the Spread knob.

• An optically controlled delay with a fully featured LFO section with 8 different waveforms to choose from. • Tap tempo, six multipliers and Swell function controlled both through a footswitch and a knob. • The LFO section can produce anything from lush chorus and vibrato to wild rising swells and “falling star”–like tones.


Wilson Effects Slapback

• A compact and feature-rich • Dual, digital PT2399 based delay multi-function delay with tap tempo with 700ms delay per channel and and optional trails mode. uniquely flexible routing features. • Four algorhythms: digital, analog, lo- • The two separate delay circuits are fi, and slap-back. internally cascaded into one another, but can be separated using the rout• The X knob changes functions depending jacks on the top of the pedal. ing on which Algorithm you are using. • Bypass footswitch double as a mo- • Oscillation, triggered by the middle footswitch, can be applied to either mentary swell when held. channel through a toggle switch. 34

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Tomkat Super Day Dreamer • A delay/reverb with simple and interactive controls and self-oscillation mode (holding footswitch). • Bright sounding medium length reverb (spring/hall) with slight modulation. • “Regen” and “Time” control the delay’s feedback and delay time. • Features tap tempo, subdivision, and modulation options.

API TranZformer GT • A 3 band EQ/Compressor from the legendary console manufacturer. • Input Gain control with +30dB of gain. • Separate footswitch for compressor and EQ.


Pedal/Synth cross-pollination will take place in all its glory at the upcoming 8th Brooklyn Stompbox Exhibit! Yes, because this year this event will happen in the same space as the Synth Expo, on the same weekend! As always, BRING YOUR GUITAR!



Earthquaker Devices Pyramids

Old Blood Noise Flat Light

Rabbit Hole FX Phaser

Mastro Valvola LFO Tremolo

• A Stereo Flanging Device with five presets, eight modes, tap tempo, tap subdivision and variable Mix control. • Modify control affects different settings depending on the selected Mode. • Right footswitch works as tap tempo and re-trigger of the LFO cycle.

• Generates original sounding effects from flanging. • Three modes: Detune (shimmering pitch shift), Resonate (highly resonant multiflange), and Echo (reverb-like delay). • Tilt footswitch momentarily maximizes Rate or Shift controls.

• An 8-stage analog Phaser with a rich sound that’s uncharacteristically large. • Can deliver anything from soft character to chaotic phasing insanity.

• Vintage sounding optical tremolo with a range of feature you won’t find in vintage units of the ’60s. • 16 different waveforms with Symmetry control to alter their shape. • Tap Tempo with 3 selectable divisions.



Empress Effects Zoia

TWA Dynamorph

• Described as “a compact grid of musical anything.” • Modules are used to build instruments, and each block in the grid can become a varying piece of your patch like an effect or a function or an oscillator. • Patches can then be saved in presets.

• A filter + distortion pedal with an envelope-detection circuit that interacts with the player’s performance. • Features a series of obscurely named switches and knobs that open a sea of sonic possibilities. • Mode switch selects between two different overall EQ settings.

The King of Gear Mini Glitch

Red Panda Tensor

• Inspired by Jonny Greenwood’s • Gives you live reverse and tape stop random Max/MSP “stutter” effect. effects, pitch shifting, time stretching and hold functions you can • It does more than that, through three combine in creative ways. “glitch triggering mechanisms”: Random, Switched and Threshold. • Slow down, speed up and rewind in real time. • The glitching sample can be set to a fixed length or randomized, • Stretch or compress time with no pitch while the Dry-Path switch can rechange. Loop, overdub, and randomly move altogether the original dry slice phrases up to 4.8 seconds. signal when glitching is active. the deli Spring 2018



The Pedals of the

June 9: 12pm – 7pm / June 10: 10am – 5pm

bklyn stompbox exhibit 2018

Absurd Conclave (360 Jefferson St. Lower Level)


• A modern and versatile take on the Tone Bender fuzz. • The “Wool” control allows to get the compressed vintage sound or a more tight and articulate one. • Adjustable distortion, level & EQ.

• A single stage high frequency boost + triple stage English 70s-style fuzz box by an established builder of Pro Audio gear. • The two effects can be used in series or independently. • Individual gain pots for each section. Fuzz section also has control pots for Juice, Bass, and Treble.

Fuzzrocious Grey Stache + Octave Jawn • Good for both guitar and bass, it’s based upon the GGG-tuned and Civil War versions of a muff fuzz. • Separate Tone and Mids controls make it extremely versatile in the mid-range (scoop/flat/boost). • Dialing back the sustain delivers a sound more similar to an overdrive. 36

the deli Spring 2018

Death By Audio Absolute Destruction

BAE Audio Hot Fuzz

Animals Pedal Rover

• A glarly fuzz with a twist. • The two horizontal sliders (“Overload” and “Gain”) interact with each other to push and /or starve the pedal’s circuit with unpredictable results.

Main Ace FX Navigator • Boost + Fuzz producing classic fuzz tones until you hit the Double switch - then it can “rip apart your soul with devastating fuzzy agony.” • Dialing down Bias and Fuzz controls starves it into a buzzing crackle. • “Tone” and “Spice” toggle switches add extra tonal flavor.

Pelican NoiseWorks Half Horse • A dynamic JFET based fuzz originating from half of the company’s signature pedal The Pelitaur. • “Grain” knob controls the gain, while “Sound” is basically a tone knob.

Farm Pedals Sweet Leaf • A knobless fuzz, what else can we say? • Internal trim pot allows to dial the volume back or turn it up a little.

SolidGoldFX 76 Octave Fuzz • A multi-voiced germanium octave fuzz that can deliver many fuzz flavors. • The three-way “Color” switch combined with the “Texture” control provide infinite midrange options. • Two internal DIP switches deliver extra tonal options.



The Pedals of the

June 9: 12pm – 7pm / June 10: 10am – 5pm

bklyn stompbox exhibit 2018

Absurd Conclave (360 Jefferson St. Lower Level)


Jonny Rock Gear Moby Depth

Meris Mercury7

• A digital spring reverb with a series of tweakable settings. • The “Regen” knob regulates the amount of effected signal sent back in the Reverb (Feedback control). • Useful FX Loop (Send-Return).


• A stereo digital reverb inspired by the reverbs used in the soundtrack of Blade Runner. • Extensive modulation capability, high & low frequency damping and auto swell envelope. • Selectable higher headroom signal path for Synthesizers.

multi- effects

Mooer Radar

Eventide H9

• 30 different speaker cab models with customizable EQ. • Capable of loading custom IRS. • Optional microphone (11 mic models) and power amp simulation. • Headphone and line outputs.

• Runs all of Eventide’s stompbox effects. • Fully controllable through one knob user interface. • iOS/Android app allows managing presets, live control and algorithm purchases.


the deli Spring 2018

Source Audio Ventris Dual Reverb • Features two completely independent reverb processors, one entirely dedicated to the spring effect (True Spring Engine). • Seamless and unlimited “spillover” from one preset to the next. • 12 onboard reverb engines + expanding extras via the Neuro app.

Wampler Pedals Reflection • Two reverbs (spring and plate) in one pedal. • Features the often overlooked pre-delay function, that leaves more room for the note’s attack. • Internal switches let you adjust the effect’s tails and dry signal to your liking.



Electro-Harmonix 95000

Tech 21 DP-3X

• An advanced “Performance Loop Laboratory” with six mono tracks and one stereo mix-down track per loop. • Tap, Quantize, Overdub, Reverse functionalities among many others. • Two ins/outs + monitor and headphones outs. • Optimized for boot floor and tabletop use.

• A dUg Pinnick signature pedal (with built-in tuner) that’s an adaptation of his Tech 21 Ultra Bass 1000 Signature head. • Also recreates the sound dUg developed in the ’80s merging highend distortion from a guitar amp with low-end bass from a bass amp. • It also provides more traditional bass tones through the drive, compressor and EQ sections optimized for bass.


DR Strings

Founded by Mark Dronge, son of Guild Guitars founder Alfred Dronge, in 1989, New Jersey’s DR Strings re-introduced handmade round core string making to the general market. Although the process requires a lot of skill and time, the company felt it was worth it because the difference can be heard. The idea paid off, and today DR is a market leader in the string manufacturing field with dozen of string models that fit every player’s needs.

The Deli’s Expos’ Sponsors

D’Angelico Guitars Hosa Cables A leading supplier in analog and digital connectivity solutions, Hosa Technology is a favorite among those working within the musical instrument and professional audio industries. Always redefining and advancing what modern analog/digital connectivity should look like, Hosa Technology recently announced the introduction of their Hopscotch Patch cables, a unique, pigtail patch point ideal for modular synths.

MONO Pedalboards

Already an industry leader in the instrument case realm, MONO’s first line of pedalboards have been an immediate hit. Available in five different formats, the MONO boards are cut from a single piece of 3mm anodized aluminum, and feature cut-outs optimized to facilitate any kind of custom wiring. MONO offers these boards in either a flat or ten degree incline, and each one is shipped with 3M dual lock for attaching the pedals to it. The boards come with a sturdy padded soft case and are available in black or silver.

Strymon Zuma Strymon has long been synonymous for studio quality stompboxes, but the company has recently entered the PSU market and it’s pushing the envelope with the release of the Zuma, the highest horsepower and most technologically advanced pedal power supply of its kind. The PSUl is designed with the modern player in mind, offering 500mA of current per output, and advanced, multistage filtering power that allows your pedals to have the best possible dynamic range. 40

the deli Spring 2018

A guitar company whose name is synonymous with New York City, D’Angelico was founded in 1932 by Lower East Sideborn John D’Angelico. A talented luthier, he opened shop in the city’s Little Italy neighborhood, where he built his custom, hand-made archtop six-strings. D’Angelico’s guitars became soon extremely sought after, but John’s early death in 1964 put an end to the company’s first chapter. In 2011, the brand was relaunched through a new owner, who created a line of authentic reissues and introduced a solid-body collection, delivering D’Angelico quality at an affordable price.

Big Thanks also to


Since its 2013 launch, this online marketplace focusing on musical gear has quickly become one of the most popular sites for musicians. Reverb allows both dealers and individuals to create free listings for instruments and other equipment, charging a sale fee that’s a fraction compared to other generic online marketplaces. The platform also offers a useful price guide and a very popular news section featuring, among other things, video reviews, tutorials and interviews with artists and manufacturers.

The synths of the

bklyn synth expo 2018


June 9: 12pm – 7pm / June 10: 10am – 5pm

Absurd Conclave (360 Jefferson St. Lower Level)

Arturia MatrixBrute

Arturia MiniBrute 2S

• An incredibly powerful analog monophonic synthesizer. • Features the flexibility of modular systems but offers presets thanks to the Matrix concept. • Offers three Brute oscillators, a Steiner-Parker filter and a ladder filter, and five analog effects.

• A portable, semi-modular evolution of the super-successful MiniBrute, the 2S is designed with the sequencing player in mind, with pads instead of keys. • Unexpected features include a second VCO; a second LFO; new VCO and Filter frequency modulation possibilities; modifier-related modulation destinations; a brand new, loopable AD envelope. • Its CV/Gate patch bay lets you reinvent and restructure it.

Critter & Guitari ETC Video Synthesizer

Dave Smith Instruments Prophet X

• Reacts to sound/music/MIDI to create endlessly mesmerizing visuals. • Create and recall presets for performances, music videos, etc. • Programming is open source and accessible through the optional USB WiFi adapter.

• The first Prophet to fuse samples and synthesys. • It powers two16-bit, 48kHz sample-based instruments plus two high-resolution digital oscillators. • 150 GB of internal samples from sound developers 8Dio, including a collection of acoustic and electronic instruments as well as edgy ambient and cinematic effects. • Features new, 24 dB-per-octave resonant low-pass filters based on a vintage design, poly step sequencing and two effects per layer. the deli Spring 2018



The synths of the

bklyn synth expo 2018



June 9: 12pm – 7pm / June 10: 10am – 5pm

Absurd Conclave (360 Jefferson St. Lower Level)

Elektron Digitakt

Elektron Digitone

• A compact drum machine/sampler with a highly flexible sound engine, 8 internal audio tracks and 1GB of storage. • Features a live-friendly sequencer, 8 dedicated tracks for controlling external MIDI gear, and Overbridge support. • 1 filter, overdrive and LFO per track + delay and reverb Send FX.

• Elektron’s first foray into FM synthesis combines FM sound generation with a classic subtractive synthesis signal flow. • Multiple FM algorithms, 8 voice polyphony, 1 arpeggiator per track + 4 synth and 4 MIDI tracks. • 1 filter, overdrive and base-width filter per voice + 2 assignable LFOs per voice. • 3 Send FX (chorus, delay, and reverb) and a master overdrive FX.

Expressive E Touché

IK Multimedia Uno

• Touch controller with pressure and direction both adjusting the outputted control signals. • The controller is highly sensitive and has adjustable sensitivity. • The controller can be used to control external gear or paired with its Lie’ software counterpart. • Four CV outputs allow for connection with modular Eurorack equipment.

• IK Multimedia’s entry in the hardware synthesizer world is a collaboration with Italian boutique synth-maker Soundmachines. • Portable, monophonic, true analog synth with 2 VCOs, noise generator, resonant multimode VCF and VCA. • 2-pole OTA-based analog resonant sweepable multimode filter with LPF, HPF and BPF. • Custom-designed, dual-stage overdrive and flexible LFO section.

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SYNTH GIVEAWAYS (worth thousands!) – Did you know that most companies participating in our Synth Expo also agree to do an online synth giveaway? You can find the full list here:

KORG Prologue

KORG minilogue

• Powerful polyphonic analog synthesizer with 8 or 16 multitimbral voices and 49 or 61 keys options. • Puts the analog circuits of the minilog through newly developed digital multi engine and powerful DSP-based effects. • Open Interface for user-created oscillators and effects, Bi-timbre support and flexible arpeggiator.

• Four-voice analog synth that delivers polyphony and full programmability at a very affordable price. • 16-step polyphonic note and motion sequencer. • Intuitive layout and inspiring effects section including a tape-style echo and ring modulator.

Malekko Manther

MOOG GrandMother

• A tabletop monosynth with an analog signal path, an advanced 64-step digital sequencer, and onboard delay. • The Source Mixer allows for total control over the Square, Triangle, Saw, Tri Shape, Noise and Sub levels and waveforms also include individual outputs. • Each step of the sequencer can be automated across all main features and all automation saved within a total of 64 presets. • An intuitive menu offers additional control and setup of the more complex features.

• New, semi-modular analog synth inspired by classic Moog designs of the ’60s and ’70s. • Features built-in arpeggiator, sequencer, and spring reverb tank. • 41 patch points, including input to process external sounds. • Beginner-proof intuitive when used without patches.

the deli Spring 2018


The synths of the

bklyn synth expo 2018



June 9: 12pm – 7pm / June 10: 10am – 5pm

Absurd Conclave (360 Jefferson St. Lower Level)

Native Instruments Maschine MK3

Novation MiniNova

• A groove production control surface now sporting a 24-bit/96kHz USB 2.0 audio interface with included sounds and samples. • User-friendly layout and seamless DAW integration. • MK3 has a more intuitive interface, larger pads, and it’s more expressive and fun with the Smart Strip function.

• A tough and compact 37 key mini synth with 18 note polyphony. • 8 Animate buttons to trigger performance functions. • VocalTune™ Vocoder for robotic and iconic vocals. • 5 effects slot per voice with 20 digital waveforms and 36 wavetables.

Novation Circuit Mono Station

Novation Peak

• A powerful sequencer and synthesizer with a fully analog sound engine. • Three sequencer tracks and 32 velocity sensitive RGB pads. • Monophonic and paraphonic modes. • Adaptable modulation system with a 4x8 modulation matrix for complex alteration and routing.

• 8-voice polyphonic synthesizer with three numerically controlled Oxford Oscillators. • Each oscillator has traditional wave shapes plus up to 17 digital wavetables. • 16 slot modulation matrix plus 16 direct assignments controlled from the front panel. • Features a multi-mode filter, built in effects, arpeggiator, and CV input.

the deli Spring 2018


The ETC™ reacts to music and MIDI to create mesmerizing visuals. It’s great for live visuals, music videos, and programming your own graphics!

The Organelle™ combines playful and intuitive controls with a powerful sound engine: perfect for experimenting with new ways of making music!

The synths of the

bklyn synth expo 2018



June 9: 12pm – 7pm / June 10: 10am – 5pm

Absurd Conclave (360 Jefferson St. Lower Level)

Pioneer DJ Toraiz SP-16 Sampler

Pioneer DJ Toraiz AS-1

• A sampler and step sequencer created with DJs and producers in mind. • It features analogue filters by the Dave Smith (the same found in the Prophet 6). • Powerful tool both in the studio and on a stage, thanks to its 16, multi-colored, velocity sensitive touch pads.

• A monophonic analog synthesizer with touchpad-style keyboard and slider. • Driven by a fully programmable, true analogue synthesis engine based on the circuitry in Dave Smith Instruments’ Prophet 6. • Features 7 on-board effects from the Prophet-6 synthand a brand new digital distortion.

Roland SE-02

Roland TR-8S

• A vintage sounding synth designed in collaboration with US manufacturer Studio Electronics. • 3 voltage controlled oscillator analog monosynth module with discrete analog circuitry. • Voltage-controlled 24dB lowpass filter, and a dual-gainstage amplifier. • Lots of high-grade knobs and switches, plus a fully featured 16-step sequencer.

• Combines the best of Roland’s heritage with modern production techniques and professional sound design. • Features Roland’s iconic drum sounds but also allows to import custom samples. • Designed for live performance, features two new automatable fill sections per pattern and the ability to lock parameter values to individual steps. • Ample choice of percussion-tuned effects and dynamics editing tools.

the deli Spring 2018


The synths of the

bklyn synth expo 2018

Absurd Conclave (360 Jefferson St. Lower Level)

Teenage Engineering PO-20 Arcade

Waldorf Quantum

• One of the most and musical fun Pocket Operators. • Arcade-style samples meet Omnichord-style chord changes and techno-style gateable drone. • 16 punch-in effects such as bit crush, stutter, and delay.

• A flexible digital synth featuring 3 Oscillators offering four synthesis algorithms each. • Generates a wide variety of sounds from classic analog to experimental sequenced clusters. • Color-lit knobs guide the user through complex settings. • Features the classic Waldorf Wavetables, Granular Sampler with multi sampling, and the Resonator for virtual sound sculpting.

Yamaha Montage 7

Yamaha Reface CS

• A hybrid synthesizer built on the legacy of the DX and Motif series that combines subtractive synthesis and frequency modulation. • Motion Control uses Super Knob, Motion Sequence and Envelope Follower to facilitate evolving sound creation.

• A portable 8-note polyphonic synth inspired by the legendary CS-80. • Features five types of synthesis, tons of tweakability and onboard effects. • Includes phrase looper to capture songs ideas, battery functionality, built in stero speakers.

• Seamless sound switching lets you change performances in realtime without any cut-off of envelopes or effects.



June 9: 12pm – 7pm / June 10: 10am – 5pm

the deli Spring 2018













www.da vesmithinstr ument s.c om

Deli - Prophet X - FINAL.indd 1

5/17/18 11:22 AM

The synths of the

Eurorack Expo selection curated by Three Wave Music

bklyn synth expo 2018

Eurorack 2hp Pluck

Conjured Circuits Cloak & Dagger • Analog filter and distortion module based on the ARP 2600 “post-lawsuit” 4-pole lowpass filter. • Two additional “attenuverting” CV inputs for controlling the cutoff frequency. • Two independent drive circuits can drive the input (“pre-filter”), output (“post-filter”), ot both.

• 4 Voice physical modeling synth that uses the Karplus-Strong algorithm to create plucked string sounds. • Dampening control sets the size of the string and allows for dramatic timbral shifts. • Decay control changes note length from percussive transients to infinite harp sounds.


Expert Sleepers FH-2

• 10 seconds of pristine delay at a sample rate up to 192 kHz. • Soft saturation clipping, low pass filter, feedback, insert loop, relay bypass, and +20 dB boost are all analog. • Can do looping, and has reverse and tap tempo functions.

• MIDI/USB Midi to CV conversion including polyphonic and MPE operation. • MINI/Analog Clock generation and synchronisation, including internal clock (BPM or Tap Tempo). • LFO generation (including tempo-synced LFOs), arpeggiator and Step sequencer.

Mutable Instruments Stages

Qu-Bit Nebulae V2 Granular Sampler

Rossum Electro-Music Assimil8or

Strymon Magneto

• A “Modulation Construction Set” that allows you to build from scratch the behavior of your modulation. • ASR envelope, complex 6-stage envelope, LFO, 4-step sequence or switched LFO: Stages can be any kind of modulation. • Reconfigures itself according to which of its gate inputs are patched.

• A granular sampler with 5 minute recording buffer and stereo ins and outs. • File playback from USB flash drive of wav, aif, ogg, and flac files. • Supports Pure Data, Csound, and SuperCollider alternate firmware files.

• Powerful, flexible sampling engine with 8 separate channels of sampling at variable sound quality. • 24-bit A/D and D/A conversion with mono or stereo sampling and stereo mix out. • Unique timbral capabilities with the ability to phase modulate samples by external analog signals or by other samples.

• A stereo multi-head tape delay that can do a lot of other things. • Can function as a looper, phrase sampler, vintage spring reverb unit, phase-aligned clock multiplier, chaotic oscillator, zero latency sub-oscillator and more. • Adds vintage character to the signal through Tape Age, Crinkle and Wow & Flutter Knobs.